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Where do you keep your caloric intake on recovery days?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 01, 2012 at 7:37 PM

I am currently working to lose the last little bit of excess fat and lean out. I do want to maintain lean mass, so I keep my protein to 20-25% (around 80g daily.) I am 5'3, 115, and working more toward body recomp/losing inches than losing weight.

I do a daily leangains-inspired IF, and I know the LG protocol generally includes eating above maintenance on training days, and aiming for a deficit on rest days. My workouts however are not LG inspired. I do whatever sort of workout sounds motivating and fun that day.

So my question is this-- on Sunday, I did a long full-body HIIT session with kettlebells. Yesterday I did circuits of BW exercises: five sets of burpees, push ups, planks, squats and lunges, a total of about 20 min, then I walked on an incline for 2 miles with short periods of easy jogging mixed in.

Both workouts were fairly standard for me, but today my whole body is a bit sore and I am Making it a true rest day complete with movies in bed and an Epsom bath.

To reap max benefits of resting and muscle recover (and fat loss! I know some say calories are meaningless, but I am very close to my goal body comp and I have to really be careful with everything), is it necessary to stay slightly below maintenance weight? I had planned to, but I listened to my body which led me to frying up a few pieces of bacon, scrambling eggs in the grease with olives and mushrooms, and slicing up a few strawberries with a tablespoon of coconut butter. It was a delicious fatty feast (Remember I am a small female) and eating so much before climbing right back into bed felt kind of gluttonous. For the record, my only carbs today will be from those strawberries + Brussels sprouts and broccoli with dinner. And I have a flat iron steak waiting for me, so I know I will eat to Maintence today.

Is it really necessary to be in a deficit on rest days if I want to lose fat, or should I be eating for maintenance when my muscles are sore? My main exercise today will basically consist of wandering around the fabric store later.

When in fat-loss mode, How do you eat when your muscles are recovering from a day of muscle failure?

Thanks in advance. Sorry for typos, I am on my phone.

980a08fc871f83f803191278d1a8c3c3

(531)

on May 01, 2012
at 09:15 PM

Ok. Maybe at will just eat 4 oz of the steak and a protein shake to cut calories a bit but get enough protein in. Thanks for the input!

980a08fc871f83f803191278d1a8c3c3

(531)

on May 01, 2012
at 09:13 PM

Thanks for your input! I am thinking you are right. I have a hard time allowing myself to eat in excessin training days, and a hard time cutting myself off on rest days. My body tends to just crave the lower end of maintenance no matter what. I think it will be worth the extra diligence though- thanks!

980a08fc871f83f803191278d1a8c3c3

(531)

on May 01, 2012
at 09:10 PM

I ate (cleanly) to appetite for quite awhile, while experimenting with macros and the like intermittently and it got me to a certain point, but now I am stalled with the stubborn fat I have been carrying around since puberty and I can tell it ain't budging until I get some manipulation down to a science. This is the dirst time I have ever been in shape, steong, and proud of my body and I also just happen to be at a place in my life where I have the time, energy and motivation to see how far I can take it :)

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on May 01, 2012
at 08:30 PM

You need to be in a deficit. I've had really good success with LG recomp at +20/-20% on/off days, lost 22kg since Jan of last year, mostly during LG.

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3 Answers

1
F0a3e3f17d9a740810ac37ff2353a9f3

(3804)

on May 01, 2012
at 08:25 PM

I eat to appetite every day.

I've noticed that I eat more on exercise days in general, and more protein in particular on weight-training days.

I'm not convinced that doing anything else has any justifiable benefit.

980a08fc871f83f803191278d1a8c3c3

(531)

on May 01, 2012
at 09:10 PM

I ate (cleanly) to appetite for quite awhile, while experimenting with macros and the like intermittently and it got me to a certain point, but now I am stalled with the stubborn fat I have been carrying around since puberty and I can tell it ain't budging until I get some manipulation down to a science. This is the dirst time I have ever been in shape, steong, and proud of my body and I also just happen to be at a place in my life where I have the time, energy and motivation to see how far I can take it :)

0
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on May 29, 2012
at 10:10 PM

I keep mine 20% below maintenance on recovery days. But I will also create I a substantial 20% surplus on workout days. I think Berkhan does something similar, but I don't know what percentages he's doing. I can't imagine it being much more or less, though.

0
06bf7b92d77f1ac1d8e3dc9d539d8254

on May 01, 2012
at 08:21 PM

I say eat at 20% below maintenance on rest days. If that means that you won't be able to eat enough protein because you're eating high calorie fatty foods then maybe try supplementing with whey protein (if you're not strict paleo). Otherwise I would say that you are just going to be sore.. keep up the epsom baths.

I think you really have to be at a deficit to lose fat.

980a08fc871f83f803191278d1a8c3c3

(531)

on May 01, 2012
at 09:15 PM

Ok. Maybe at will just eat 4 oz of the steak and a protein shake to cut calories a bit but get enough protein in. Thanks for the input!

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