Another Intermitent Fasting Question - Regarding HIIT

by (161)
Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 05, 2013 at 5:41 PM

I know that IF is all over the place but I was trying to find resources and articles on what I am proposing. It's summer and I am trying to lean out a bit for a vacation I have coming up :) I have done this for a week so far with seemingly positive results (mirror checks and overall energy levels are up)

I want to continue a protocol for my diet and exercise as follows

M/W/F - HIIT workout day, 6 hour feeding window (high fat, moderate protien, low carb)

T/Th - all day fast via eat stop eat

S/Su - rest days, eat mostly normal but probably have a few cheat meals for social reasons. And the fact that I cant go a week without a slice of pizza. |>

All days I will at a minimum consume 64 OZ of water, most days probably 100+oz

my reasoning is as follows:

After my workout my body will be replenishing depleted stores and hopefully repairing broken down muscles etc. By keeping my exercises short but powerful I wont plow through glycogen stores so I shouldn't need to be carbing up afterwards. (this is a non paleo meat head resource for no pwo carbs http://www.musclehack.com/post-workout-carbs-crucial-or-counter-productive/) This should allow me to be in a stable insulin state and break down free fatty acids for fuel, borderline keto I suppose.

Fasting days, I do really good fasting since trying out paleo/LC/IF about 2 years ago. Once I kicked my "whole wheat habit" fasting isn't hard for me to do at all. Anyways I want to fast for a multiple of reasons, one being I think its a great tool to mitigate weight gain and promote cell autophagy and kick hormesis into gear by keeping your body guessing (similar to why you train muscles with different workouts, because biologically things adapt really fast and you'll see diminishing returns). Also because fasting increases HGH and drastically lowers insulin this should be helpful for the tail end of my 24+ hr of muscle repair and keeping overall weekly calories in check because I will consume more calories than maintenance on training days (probably 2800-3500 cals/day)

Saturdays are my "cheat" day, I'll probably have pizza or a burger on a brioche bun and fries. Also it's hard to go to functions and not eat grandma's special cupcakes or be the guy asking if the meatballs are made with bread crumbs or if there's HFCS in the BBQ sauce. So I'm giving myself some freedom here.

Sundays I play hockey and will probably eat my normal diet (including brunch of bacon and eggs and bacon, and bacon) So I might be a little fluffy from carb-o-saturday but a few hours of hockey should deplete my stores and be in good shape to start the week back over again.

My ending questions are this, does this seem like a quality hybrid of IF and does anyone know of any resources or studies where I can find information on fasting after working out. All I can find is articles regarding working out and then fasting, not really fasting the day after a workout after eating after the workout.

Hopefully I will be able to update this a few weeks down the line and let ya'll know how it went.


8574 · July 08, 2013 at 4:05 PM

A quick Google gave me this: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/post-workout-fasting/

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3 Answers

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8574 · July 08, 2013 at 3:57 PM

A couple of things, not criticisms just points of interest.

Careful you don't go too low on calories over the whole week. By that I mean if you are doing a 6-hour feeding window, get your day's calories plus workout calories in that window.

If you are really doing a HIIT session Monday, fasting right through Tuesday, then attempting another HITT on Wednesday, then straight into another 24 hour fast, and then HIIT on Friday... all low-carb... honestly this sounds like a recipe for a burn-out?

I know Lyle McDonald's UD2 utilizes three days of low-carb/low-calorie high-rep/short-rest workout glycogen depletion, followed by carb-loading with full-body heavy/power resistance training. Days 3, 7 are the rest days.

Rob Wolf answered my question the other day about whether you could liberate and burn-fat for muscle hypertrophy: Lipolysis for muscle hypertrophy? Which leads me to further believe it's probably not going to be easy to add muscle if you are eating just at maintenance, but as you pointed out you will be aiming higher on workout days.

I looked through EatStopEat quickly and didn't see anything specific about fasting after a workout. Pilon simply says do what you normally do on your workout days be that continue the fast if you already were. That whole carb-backloading (see: http://bit.ly/12ayQWu) is an interesting take too. I would say have a look at LeanGains again to see if PWO nutrition is better than fasting.

Personally I would think it would be more useful to take advantage of that post-workout environment for partitioning what you eat rather than fasting. Fasted workouts + PWO nutrition.

The main thing is to watch yourself, as it seems a very easy way to underfeed and overtax yourself. Pilon even warns against trying to do more than 2 x 24 hour fasts a week and not to do them back to back. Whether using the hypercaloric 6-hour feeding window properly mitigates any problems, that you would have to see with this experiment.

This is worth a read: http://www.precisionnutrition.com/intermittent-fasting

8574 · July 08, 2013 at 4:05 PM

A quick Google gave me this: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/post-workout-fasting/

2944 · July 08, 2013 at 5:04 PM

HIIT can be hard on the central nervous system and if you're going low carb at the same time I think you risk burning yourself out.

Also fasting may increases HGH and keep insulin low but having insulin spike after a workout can be fine - the idea is to drive nutrients into the muscle cells to foster and aid repair. Paritucuarly if you're doing HIIT virtually every 2nd day, I think you'd be better served eating carbs after at least a couple of them. Performance will (arguably) be better, so too recovery and overall health...

880 · July 08, 2013 at 1:12 PM

Your plan looks sound (and it definitely looks like you've thought it out). However, only actual testing will tell for sure. Speaking from my personal perspective, I know I wouldn't try doing all day fasts the day after a workout, whether it was heavy lifting or HIIT, just because my body recovers gradually. I'd watch how your workouts progress as time goes on, to see if they get less efficient and harder, as that may be a sign that your body can't absorb all the nutrients in that 6 hour window on workout day. In that case, I'd recommend cutting the non-workout days to a 6 or 8 hour fast as well. Still, each person is different, so do what feels best :)

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