Ive been VLC/ZC meat/fat/bit of greens for 5 months. I usually eat (3 meals) at 8am/3pm/9pm 3x per week, and (2 meals) 8am/5-9ish pm 2x per week. Ive done some rock climbing on the cliffs after a 7am breakfast that lasted until 6pm, eating nothing and feeling 'that feeling' of powerful clarity and stamina.
Sunday I tried a 24hr fast for the first time. Ive been loathe to try it because I was hung up on the leptin/cortisol issues mentioned about skipping breakfast. Well, as paleo had broken through many of my other fears and perceived barriers like a freight train, I figured I'd listen to my gut (pun intended) and go for another thing I thought impossible.
I had eaten a huge all-you-can-eat beef BBQ at 7pm the night before. I woke up at 5am , ate nothing, stretched, went to the rock climbing gym at 2pm, climbed and trained intensely until 6:30pm, then ate all-you-can-eat beef/pork shabu shabu (japanese cook at your table meat in broth). I felt incredible 25hr fast!
Still, rock climbing is a sort of slow, meditative, high tension, slow movement, long rest-period sort of training that lends itself very nicely to fasting. I was always convinced that fasted, intense weight training (for me, a former carb addict who couldn't go 3 hrs without eating) was impossible at worst, ineffective at best. So today, Tuesday, I woke up and it occurred to me to go for it. My last meal was 9pm and not so big. I awoke at 6am and stretched, read, and relaxed. No breakfast.
About 9am, I had the crazy idea of testing my rep max of dead hang, full lock out pullups; I broke my all time record! Before that, I had felt like I was hungry and missing breakfast. After that, I felt like I was running on some sort of rocket fuel; I felt awake, lazer-focused, and so full of surging energy that I didn't know what to do with myself.
I went to the gym at 11:30am, with no food in 14.5hrs; nothing, no whey, no shakes, no pills, no BCAA. I was foaming at the mouth as I walked to the gym; I literally couldn't wait to nail those lifts. In 30 minutes, I broke my deadlift 1rm record, and proceeded to do Pavel Tsatsouline style heavy ladders (1rep, 2reps, 3reps, 4reps, rest, repeat), finishing 20 total reps each of 80% 1RM deadlifts, standing barbell military press, and dead hang pullups, in supersets. IN 30 MIN! I absolutely RIPPED the deadlifts off the floor! I had so much power and energy, I thought I'd taken something illegal! How was this possible that I had more energy than I have ever remembered during a workout, when I hadn't eaten in almost 15hrs??
Once at work ( I work 1pm to 9pm), I ate a normal sized meal at 1pm. All day (today) I have felt a rush of energy that won't quit. The usual slow burning diesel fuel-like feeling of being in Ketosis feels today more like raging carb fueled madness, but much smoother, with no drops, and no jittery feelings or shakes, AND super sharp concentration. I'll finish another couple meals for my day's calories by 9pm, keeping a LEANGAINS style 16hr fast / 8hr feeding window.
So what the hell is going on? I have always noticed about myself that I'm suited for long efforts, for endurance. I have always, no matter what I ate or in what way, felt sick and or starving whenever I was not exercising in a day. I always feel hungrier and have less concentration. Whenever I exercise, I feel good all day and not nearly as hungry. When others are bonked from Mountain Biking, thats when my energy just starts to come on (I suck in the beginning and take ages to get in the zone, but once there, I'm BETTER when others are done). Its like my body is just not efficient at digesting, or using energy unless im putting in some capacity of physical work. I feel awful when I'm at rest all day. When climbing, my best runs are at the day's end when everyone else is knackered out. I'm a freak.
So what's happening inside me? Is it that I'm simply more efficient at utilizing/metabolizing energy when A) Training, and B) Fasted Training? Its like my body doesn't want to let go and metabolize fat until I'm really fasted, then once it really starts (with the stimulus of fasted training apparently) its comes on like illegal drug use. I'm 185cm 65.5kilos, slim build, small muscles, ectomorphic.
Any ideas or insights?
asked byanimaleater (2432)
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on June 12, 2012
at 11:45 AM
I have no idea why this happens, but its the second time ive heard of it, and it makes alot of sense. If someone without food is hard core exercising, in nature, odds are they are hunting, so would make sense if lots of chemical reactions took place to help you perform peak as possible...
Fasting can be quite mild altering on its own, after a while. Gives you a sorta emotionless aggression, I found.
on June 12, 2012
at 04:26 PM
Blame adrenaline for your newly found strength. Mark of leangains.com has a few writeups about this on his site.
breakdown of glycogen to glucose
During a fasting period, a little epinephrine (adrenalin) is released into circulation from our adrenal glands (see Blood Glucose and Hormones Figure and Blood Glucose and Hormone Table). Among epinephrine???s many roles will be its influence upon the liver and skeletal muscle. It will support the effects of glucagon in the liver that were just mentioned. In skeletal muscle, the slightly elevated epinephrine will lightly promote the breakdown of glycogen to glucose