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What about exercising before every meal for better body composition? Insulin sensitivity, GLUT4 and AMPK glucose transport induced by exercise

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 29, 2013 at 10:56 AM

A little background: I was more or less obese when I was child because I ate a lot of crap and didn't almost move from the sofa. Then at 22 I started doing fitness/endurance running and improved a lot, but always struggled to get 'ripped to the bones'.

I'm pretty tenacious so since long I've been researching about the best strategies to put on muscle and burn fat. Have read about a lot of strategies from CW magazines, papers, supplement brands, etc. Did pretty well and more or less achieved my goals, but I always aim to get further, I've already spend to much time on this to just stay average, hehe.

Ok, so nowadays we know, because there are many studies on this, that people with metabolic syndrome and Type 2 diabetes mellitus have a difficult time losing body fat because insulin sensitivity issues doesn't allow the nutrients to be transported to the muscle and they get instead stored as fat. We also know that exercise benefits blood glucose transport into the muscles via the AMPK and GLUT4 mechanisms. So that explains why exercise is so widespread and recommended by doctors/dietitians because it helps by-passing a mechanism that the body should be able to allow in normal conditions but that has been very harmed on people suffering from metabolic diseases.

(Thanx to @animaleater because of your latest posts it make me trigger an interest switch on this and I researched a little bit more about the subject!)

This powerpoint summarizes all this in a pretty graphical and understandable way ever for the ones like me that don't have a biological/health/medicine professional background.

Diabetes and Exercise: Why Exercise Works When Insulin Does Not

So here's my theory: Most of us exercise regularly, maybe 3-5 days a week and once a day. What about if we did a little bit of exercise before every meal? Couldn't we hack our body so it makes good use of EVERY meal we have and get override of fat storage as much as possible? Could we be always fat burning and muscle building this way? Could we forget about ketosis and never ever more care about carb intake halting our goals? (not meant to eat crap again, just nutrition-dense foods without caring so much about the ratios). Should't it also mimic original hunter-gathering survival strategy the best? (Don't think we we're meant to be sitting all day and then get our food magically presented in front of us and at any time).

Of course too much exercise can be detrimental (recovery is of utmost importance for body wellbeing and avoiding cortisol related problems and chronic inflammation) but what about if only 5, 10 or 15 minutes of intense exercise, lets say, 2 to 5 series of pushups or body weight sqauts could trigger this effect? Should't it be optimal compared to regular workouts without an specific timing (like most people do)?

What are your thoughts on this? Anyone played with this? Do you know of some studies on this topic? Please share!

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 22, 2013
at 01:59 AM

Then for god's sake, stop. Even if it's a good idea it's not right for everyone.

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on March 29, 2013
at 09:28 PM

that's it... don't be shy. we don't bite

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 29, 2013
at 07:11 PM

My friends think I'm crazy because I usually don't eat unless I've "earned" it...whether that be through a 24 hour fast or a good workout. I have my water and tea when my mind tells me I'm hungry, but my delicious paleo food when my body says the same

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on March 29, 2013
at 05:29 PM

I was just about to write this. So yep do check out the 4HB.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on March 29, 2013
at 03:13 PM

Yes, I believe this is the state we're supposed to be in before most if not all meals. YOu should feel like you've legitimately earned what you're going to eat. Meaning, you should have a physiologic craving for that meal, not a psychologic one.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on March 29, 2013
at 03:12 PM

Yes, I believe this is the state we're supposed to be in before most if not all meals.

048dd52752c45129c1212bfffb37ca72

(3150)

on March 29, 2013
at 02:30 PM

Will have a look at this, thanks a lot!

Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on March 29, 2013
at 01:38 PM

Seems like a reasonable hypothesis to me.

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3 Answers

3
Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

on March 29, 2013
at 02:26 PM

Tim Ferriss discusses this in 4-Hour Body. Through n=1 experimentation he was able to determine optimal timing for best results. Which he found to be 15 minutes before eating and again 45 minutes after eating.

Just light body-weight stuff to get the heart rate up.

Going off your post above I think you would enjoy the book. Some wonky stuff in there, no doubt. But, quite a bit of useful information, too.

048dd52752c45129c1212bfffb37ca72

(3150)

on March 29, 2013
at 02:30 PM

Will have a look at this, thanks a lot!

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on March 29, 2013
at 05:29 PM

I was just about to write this. So yep do check out the 4HB.

2
1d8d318b49aebd4265b6da27efe6f8c6

on March 29, 2013
at 06:58 PM

I usually just lurk, but your question caught my eye.

Glenn Pendlay has his athletes do twice-daily workouts, which could theoretically fit in w/an intermittent-fasting / two-meals-daily approach for the average person. You'd almost certainly wanna tone down the intensity level as compared to his proteges, but the concept seems sound. The canonical post is at http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/too_much_muscle_the_glenn_pendlay_secret and http://bastardolifters.blogspot.com/2010/03/mass-gain-theory-by-glenn-pendlay.html adds some practical advice.

The key is that the extra workouts be concentric only. Concentric is the "positive' portion of an exercise. If you lift a weight above your head, that's concentric. If you then lower it slowly back down, that's eccentric. In the eccentric motion, your muscle cells are lengthening even as they try to contract, and it is this which causes the most damage and soreness. Some eccentric is good, it might even be a better stimulus for the muscle than the concentric on a per-minute-worked basis, but the tradeoff is that you can't do it nearly as often. You can do concentric-only much more.

I doubt you'd absolutely need to do this with weights, either, unless you want to. Stair-climbing, for example, can be HIIT and is purely concentric, as is rowing a boat and any number of other exercises.

If you wanna work out before every meal, this approach might help minimize burnout. I wouldn't go crazy on the post-exercise carbs, either, just enough to replenish should be good. You can calc it based on your effort.

Let us know what you try and how it works out! Back to lurking now....

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on March 29, 2013
at 09:28 PM

that's it... don't be shy. we don't bite

0
Ea1dcda68d9bdb8203aa46b84f2baa11

on July 21, 2013
at 09:42 PM

I tried doing this religiously for years and now I'm dying. I have lost muscle mass, have no energy, and all bodily functions seem to be operating at a senior citizen level. I must have been eating wrong and doing the wrong exercises it seems.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 22, 2013
at 01:59 AM

Then for god's sake, stop. Even if it's a good idea it's not right for everyone.

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