Compensating for an "extra" meal on IF

Answered on April 29, 2012
Created April 28, 2012 at 3:30 PM

Last night was my friends birthday and we all went out for dinner to Rio Grand (totally not paleo friendly, I know). I've recently started a 12 week program (Andy Morgan's approach to LeanGains) which has been going really well.

To jump right into it, I read up on his article on how to eat on the holidays or for special events. That said, yesterday was a training day (deadlifts) with a high carb low fat macro break down. Unfortunately, while out to dinner I ended up eating a whole extra LeanGains sized meal which definitely took me over my allocation for fat on a training day. Probably two or three fold at that, on top of all the extra protein/carbs that came with the meal. Essentially, I'm trying to follow this up with a 40 hour fast to maintain a good balance for my weekly calories. The article on compensating for holday-style meals can be found here: http://rippedbody.jp/2011/11/22/how-to-use-intermittent-fasting-to-eat-like-a-king-and-keep-your-abs-this-holiday-season/

My question is this: I feel a cold creeping in this morning and it could just be allergies but it sure feels like I'm on the verge of a bug or something like that. Little bit of coughing and sneezing, but nothing too serious. Would fasting 40 or more hours (until my next feeding window on a training day, basically this coming Monday) make me get MORE sick or disrupt my ability to recover if I have caught something like a cold? I certainly don't want to suffer the results of breaking my diet and taking a huge spillover from overeating last night, but I also don't want to punish my body just because I broke the diet. The last thing I want to do is have to stay out of the gym for two weeks just because I didn't eat right and ended up doing something extreme to compensate. Does anyone have any good resources on fasting when slightly sick or tired? I know I should listen to my body at the end of the day, but I remember hearing that fasting can boost your immune system. Obviously, I'm not making the assumption that this is going to make me better faster, just wanna know if it's going to hurt anything. Thanks !

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4 Answers


on April 29, 2012
at 10:00 PM

If I feel I've been undereating then I try to take advantage of an 'extra' meal to simply make sure I'm not pushing too hard. Ideally it should just allow me to put a bit of extra effort in the next day. If I'm not doing much the next day though, or I've had several 'extra' meals then throwing in the fast works well. I can always end it if my hunger comes back seriously (which is an indication that I should be eating more anyway). Depending on your goals, if you have the luxury of curling up and resting then I wouldn't worry about eating in order to avoid the bug. Your body is much better able to look after itself in the fasting state.

For me it generally comes down to sleep. If I'm feeling good and comfortable without eating then it's all good. If I'm feeling cranky and unable to sleep soundly then I'd rather eat. The great thing about paleo diets is that your body becomes so much more robust to this kind of variation. One day is rarely going to undermine you for weeks.



on April 29, 2012
at 07:57 AM

just read the article and seems fair enough, I think the real problem is your caveat of being sick.

if it were me, i go for the 2 shorter fasts if I could get away with it, it'll be easier and put less strain on a body that might be fighting off a bug. Otherwise just got with the 1 40hr fast. If you're eating a balanced diet you should be topped up with all the nutrients need to keep your body fuelled (especially after the big meal)


on April 28, 2012
at 07:28 PM

It seems like you have been following strict guidelines for 12 weeks! One night of over-eating is not going to affect you! Especially if you are active. I would just do some HIIT and IF for 24 hours at most then go back to your normal schedule. If you feel sick I would certainly not fast for 40 hours. Plus, under normal circumstances that is too long I.e. puts your body under a lot of stress. Anyways eating this way is supposed to be enjoyable and make you feel good! If you are hungry don't force yourself not to eat!



on April 28, 2012
at 03:58 PM

If you want to gain muscle mass you shouldn't be fasting for 40 hours under any circumstances.

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