Intermediate fasting feedback - POST HERE!

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    Intermediate fasting feedback - POST HERE!


    There are so many conflicting arguments on the Internet at the moment about fasting its hard to say wether it's a good thing to trial or what kind of issues can you come across.

    A lot of people say it's a typical "weight loss fad" and others say it's a way of life now.

    Who here has or is doing IF?
    What were the reasons behind it? Where you just wanting to get from 10% BF to 8%?
    Any side effects or good results?
    Does anyone think this is just another diet fad?

    Would be good to hear everyone's opinion or experiences because IF is relatively new and hasn't got long term studies of the health impacts etc

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    Sorry about the misspelling in the header of this thread

    Do the moderators would want to maybe correct it?

    I meant "intermittent" not "intermediate"
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    i like it but i try not to take it uber serious. i usually go pretty wide like 11am-7pm as my eating hours. my favorite part is that it makes it easy to stay under maintenance when you limit your eating hours a little
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    First, the anecdotal evidence. I'm a guy in my late thirties, with kids, without a bunch of free time. I'm a former national-class sprinter, so I suppose I've got genetics working for me, but age and lack of sleep were starting to take their toll. More urgently, I had relentless hunger all the time—not a problem back in the day when I was training hard 2-4 hours a day, but a serious issue now that I'm older (with a slower metabolism), have had knee surgeries (so can't run as hard anymore), and just don't have the time. So, long story short, I gained about 35 kilos over a few years. Some of it good weight, most of it not.

    I lost the weight by going strictly low-carb for about 6 months. That worked, but I was hungry, irritable, and listless all the time; I thought about jumping off that particular wagon every single day. But I had bought a bunch of expensive clothes in my new, smaller sizes, so that wasn't an option. Lol (but srsly, I need bigger closets, folks).

    So, like Milarepa of Tibetan lore, I went on a spiritual quest for (dietary) enlightenment. Tried a whole bunch of solutions, all of which left me either (a) hungry and listless, (b) gaining weight back, or (c) without energy for workouts.

    Enter a trip where I was stuck in a delayed flight, and then an airport, for a total of over 24 hours. Without money in the local currency, and unwilling to venture outside (and have to return through int'l security) for sustenance. In other words, involuntary IF.
    Well, hell, wouldn't you know, I wasn't hungry. At least not in the urgent, holy-crap, I-would-eat-that-plastic-table-right-about-now sense of "hungry" that had characterized all my previous attempts at dieting. It was like a revelation.
    Sure I was somewhat hungry, but in a dull, gently urging way, and not in a proto-diabetic FEED ME NOW, MORTAL kind of way.

    I had never felt that way before. Ever since retiring from track & field, I had spent eight years oscillating between "starving" and merely "really hungry", trying to stop eating when I reached the latter. The one time in those whole eight years when I truly felt "full", I had consumed about 6,000 calories in one hour.

    And, to top it off, I had energy. This didn't make sense at first to my rational brain; I wasn't yet aware that the 12th to 20th hours of fasting provoke an increased adrenocorticoid response (= "adrenaline rush"). I wasn't passing out on the airport floor; I put together an entire thirty-page prospectus while I waited and waited and waited. A level of focus and energy I'd rarely felt outside of the "manic" stage (I'm bipolar).

    So yeah, that's my experience.
    I immediately adopted "IF" (though I didn't think of it that way) as a lifestyle thing.
    On workout days, wake up, fast for 8-9 hours, eat a small amount of sugary cereal + BCAA, go work out like a beast, come home, f*** the all-too-sexually-voracious wife, then eat a satisfyingly huge meal. And pass out within 1 or 2 hours of that meal (I can't sleep more than 2 hours on an empty stomach).
    On non-workout days, wake up, fast for 12-14 hours, eat all my food within 4 hours, and then pass out within 1-2 hours of that meal.

    Since adopting that plan (with regular cheating) I have regressed to appx 7% body fat, and a hard-to-believe 13-inch drop from chest to waist (42" --> 29", good thing I can tailor my own clothes). My lipids and fasted blood sugar are better. I get to eat meals where I'm reasonably satisfied at the end, rather than perpetually being forced to eat what feels like 1/2 or 1/3 of a meal every time I eat. I'm not as much of a raving a**hole. The hunger doesn't gnaw at my heart and soul. And I've gained substantial strength from eating so many calories post-workout, despite averaging only about 4.5 to 5.5 hours of sleep a day.

    There have literally been no downsides. Well, ok, occasionally it was awkward to go to dinner with friends or colleagues and have water or Diet Pepsi for dinner. But that's only weird if you decide it's weird; if you don't, it isn't.

    Confounding variables: (I.e., other things that could be at least part of the actual cause here, besides the fasting thing)
    * I plan meals more carefully now.
    * I don't eat as much convenience food, because I cook huge amounts of "macro" food and then eat it over a few days as leftovers.
    * Most importantly, I don't normally eat until after midnight, which means I eat essentially NO restaurant food anymore. That's probably a big factor, what with all the soy oil and sugar that restaurants put into EVERYTHING. (Also, I have more money with which to buy myself clothes.)

    Oh, and my thyroid pills are more effective now, too, because I have a 18- to 20-hour fasting window for them to have full effect, rather than just a couple of hours like most people.

    Amazing, folks.

    --

    As for the evidence, OP, you are wrong about what you characterize as the paucity of that evidence.
    The recent popularity of IF is, of course, a new thing. But IF is hardly some johnny-come-lately idea. Fasting diets of all kinds are as old as the hills.
    Because of their connection to various religions, fasting has a much longer and more storied history than, well, any other type of diet plan imaginable. Probably more than ALL other diet plans, combined.

    You can find studies on "IF" that go back decades and decades. I can't post links (I guess I need a longer posting history to do that), but one particularly fruitful place to look is studies of Muslims who fast for Ramadan—which, particularly if Ramadan falls during summer months, is almost an exact mirror of the 16/8 IF concept.
    Because entire countries of people engage in that sort of "IF" together, there are thousands of such studies. Go look, you'll find 'em.
    The only complicating factor is that the Ramadan fast also includes abstention from water, while most IF proponents advise an increase in water consumption during the fast (primarily to prevent constipation later, but also to mitigate the "empty stomach" feeling).

    There are also loads and loads of "IF" studies that concern ordinary Americans. Poke around the nih.gov database and you'll find those, too.
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    Thank you for sharing your experience! Appreciated!

    Looks like a powerful thing to do for weight loss and overall health!

    I might post some studies in this thread
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    What about lethargy or bloating?
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    Lethargy, yeah no. I wrote about the energy thing in that book I wrote up there (lol)... but, also, don't forget, any energy supplement you take will be super amped up when you're fasting.
    (Do not, I repeat DO NOT, take Roxylean when you are fasted. Unless you are trying out for the role of a tomato in a school play.)

    I get sleepy after meals, especially my big post-workout meals, but I eat all my food in the last 4-6 hours before bedtime anyway. So win-win. In fact, my sleep needs have gone down from 6-7 hrs/day to 4.5-6 hrs/day, because the timing is perfect (I fall into deep sleep within a few minutes, according to this sleep monitor thingy that I have).


    Bloating, I can't say, there are way too many other variables involved. Plus, I have a low aldosterone problem, so I couldn't retain water even if I tried (I have to drink almost 2 gallons of water a day, some of it salted, to stay hydrated).

    The nice thing here, by the way, is that every liter of ICE-COLD water you drink burns 37 calories (thermal energy, your body has to heat it from 0 to 37C, you do the math). So if you drink one gallon (= about four liters) of ice-cold water a day, boom! 148 calories. Two gallons, bang! just shy of 300.
    Drink that water during the fast, and guess where those calories will come from.
    Good stuff.
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    Thanks!!

    This is a very positive link about the benefits of IF

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...healthier-life
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    Similar to Eluruguayo posts: I'm 37, married with a 4 month old baby. Stay busy at work and at home. I miss the days of carefree working out when I didn't have all the responsibility as I have now, but the trade off is well worth it. I've tried various types of cutting techniques: low carb, velocity, simple calorie restriction all with success. I started doing some research into physiology/biochemistry during grad school and adopted a form of IF on my own (before its recent popularity). I also had some personnel experience, somewhat, growing up wrestling through college. I was always on the heavier side and had to start cutting weight at the age of 8 and this carried on through college. My research and cutting experience led me to IF.
    After college I ballooned up to 286 lbs. I started to get back into shape only due to being 100% Native American and over half my family having type 2 diabetes. I dropped down to approx 170 lbs in about 8 months (all running). After this I started lifting weights seriously through majority of grad school. I got up to 205 lbs at about 9% until I started to feel sluggish and the powerlifting bug hit me. I dropped weight again. This time using IF about 10 years ago. I dropped down to around 160 lbs to compete at 165 lbs.
    After various injuries and coming to the end of my grad school and thinking of my career I gave up serious lifting and looking to just live an healthy lifestyle. Being previously overweight I gain weight very easily. During the last 2 trimesters of my wife's pregnancy I put on about 28 lbs of weight to 198 lbs. After our daughter was born I wanted to get the weight off and I adopted a formal IF schedule and in 5 weeks dropped down to 175 lbs. It came off really easy and the whole time I was RARELY hungry. On weekends I didn't even do IF, only Monday-Friday.
    I utilized a combination of heavy multi-joint lifts and complexes (olympic/powerlifting movements) with little rest between sets with a short 20-30 minute session of cardio via the stepmill afterward. I would prefer to run but like Eluruguayo I'm 9 months out from knee surgery and haven't been able to run.
    I also have to add, when I did eat (11am to 7pm) I didn't go overboard with carbs. What carbs I did eat were low GI (mostly greens). There was a fine balance between normal homeostasis and hypoglycemia during this time. Orthostatic hypotension was a daily occurrence during the 5 weeks and I had to push myself through intense workouts both fasted (worked out at 5am daily) and carb depleted.
    At times it was tough energy wise but NEVER hunger wise. When I want to lose weight IF has been my choice for about 10 years now. It's effective but most importantly I'm not hungry which makes it even easier.
    The timing that I chose to eat (11am to 7pm) is good for the family man. I could sit down and have a nice meal with my wife every night and she was never affected by my IF at all so she supported me too. I highly recommend it to anyone only for the non-hunger aspect. As with any cut, IF YOUR NOT HUNGRY IT'S EASY.
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    So you didnt do the 16hour fast and 8hour eating?
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    Yes I did. Ate from 11am to 7pm. Never hungry though. Had to force myself to eat most times.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OKnative View Post
    Yes I did. Ate from 11am to 7pm. Never hungry though. Had to force myself to eat most times.
    I am still starving but it feels like my meals between feeding times are getting smaller?
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    I got to the point when I sat down for dinner I would eat a small portion of my meal and I would be full. Sometimes after a few bites. Forced more down just so m wife wouldn't get upset.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post

    Who here has or is doing IF?
    What were the reasons behind it? Where you just wanting to get from 10% BF to 8%?
    Any side effects or good results?
    Does anyone think this is just another diet fad?

    Would be good to hear everyone's opinion or experiences because IF is relatively new and hasn't got long term studies of the health impacts etc
    First of all IF is a lifestyle as Martin does address on his website Leangains.com. People do it because it fits their schedule. There is no benefit over more meals, it comes down to hitting your macros / micros / calories in a day regardless but it comes down to your time preference and what you enjoy. If its eating 6 meals cool, if its eating 3.. then cool.

    It can be used for offseason or pre-contest i have used it getting ready for 2 bodybuilding shows (avatar was this july at collegiate nationals) I also have a bulking progress interview on Martin's site from 2 years ago in March.

    Side effects - Kills hunger (i never get hungry cutting or bulking)
    Easier on a lifestyle, less packing meals, less thinking about food or eating every X hour, allows to be more flexible with food sources for larger meals. More time spent being social, friends, family activities and not bringing or packing food.

    You can label it a fad, remember its a "Lifestyle"

    just as stated on www.leangains.com
    which martin has addressed about 100 times.
    It has good backup and scientific support via science and with personal results as shown in his clients.
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    I've been doing IF for a week now and have actually gained weight?

    I am still starving but definitely eating smaller meals or getting fuller quicker
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    I've been doing IF for a week now and have actually gained weight?

    I am still starving but definitely eating smaller meals or getting fuller quicker
    Eating more at night compared to when you did prior = reason why. you wake up early and weigh in while eating more at night instead of earlier in the day = culprit.

    Keep kcals the same and ride it out. If your in a deficit you will lose
    if in a surplus you will gain

    Common Sense = Common Sense.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    Eating more at night compared to when you did prior = reason why. you wake up early and weigh in while eating more at night instead of earlier in the day = culprit.

    Keep kcals the same and ride it out. If your in a deficit you will lose
    if in a surplus you will gain

    Common Sense = Common Sense.
    Ok thanks!

    I am more bloated now definitely
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    Check out all the damage intermittent fasting has done to the muscles of these people

    http://www.leangains.com/search/label/Client%20results
    ______________________________ __
    Fasting just destroys your muscles and puts you into starvation mode where you don't lose any fat:

    http://ajpendo.physiology.org/content/265/5/E801.short
    http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org.../50/1/96.short
    http://jcem.endojournals.org/content.../4524.abstract
    ______________________________ __
    Fasting is bad for your health. Scientific studies have shown that over and over again, like these:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20300080
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17616757
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16529878
    ______________________________ __
    It wrecks blood sugar:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17522614
    ______________________________ __ruins your metabolism!

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10837292
    ______________________________ __
    you can't work out while you're fasting?

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3622486
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17489012
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3292504
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/w8712615714k8150/


    Myths

    http://www.leangains.com/2010/10/top...-debunked.html

    Very interesting post made! ^^^^
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Ok thanks!

    I am more bloated now definitely
    Then change your sources, and lower your fiber.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    Then change your sources, and lower your fiber.
    Yes, I've been having heaps of fibre! That could be it
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    Tell you the truth my belly has expanded so much since being on IF.
    It almost looks like I'm pregnant!! :/

    Ive only been doing this for a short while and this "bloating" problem started yesterday and it happened today after my late lunch. It is also quite sore as soon as I started the proper 16 hour fasting 2 days ago

    Does this effect slowly go away? Is my stomach just getting used to this way of eating due to me being used to eating 6 meals a day at least?
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Tell you the truth my belly has expanded so much since being on IF.
    It almost looks like I'm pregnant!! :/

    Ive only been doing this for a short while and this "bloating" problem started yesterday and it happened today after my late lunch. It is also quite sore as soon as I started the proper 16 hour fasting 2 days ago

    Does this effect slowly go away? Is my stomach just getting used to this way of eating due to me being used to eating 6 meals a day at least?
    Common sense here..
    yes
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    Common sense here..
    yes
    Ok thanks

    Not sure wether IF is for me I am having huge bloating and GI issues. Going to see if it improves today but my stomach feels sore already.

    Woke me up last night because I was in agony
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Ok thanks

    Not sure wether IF is for me I am having huge bloating and GI issues. Going to see if it improves today but my stomach feels sore already.

    Woke me up last night because I was in agony
    Fiber.. you already stated you knew it was too high...
    Stop limiting yourself to X sources and vary them.

    You already know your answers but your not changing your ways.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    Fiber.. you already stated you knew it was too high...
    Stop limiting yourself to X sources and vary them.

    You already know your answers but your not changing your ways.
    You're right.

    So just lower my fibre (quest bars can be the culprit) and have smaller varied meals when the feeding happens.

    Ill try that today.
    I am not the only one with this side effect from what I've read
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    You're right.

    So just lower my fibre (quest bars can be the culprit) and have smaller varied meals when the feeding happens.

    Ill try that today.
    I am not the only one with this side effect from what I've read
    Quest bars are about 1/2 of your fiber intake for the day. 40g is plenty. I dont know why you would use them in the first place.

    Pasta, Rice, Bread = Easy Carbs
    Eggs/Beef = Easy Protein + Whey
    Oil's, peanut butter = Easy Fats
    Fruits (Banana's)
    Cereal's, Pretzels, Pancake Mix (protein pancakes)

    Life is not about oats, broccoli, and quest bars.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    Quest bars are about 1/2 of your fiber intake for the day. 40g is plenty. I dont know why you would use them in the first place.

    Pasta, Rice, Bread = Easy Carbs
    Eggs/Beef = Easy Protein + Whey
    Oil's, peanut butter = Easy Fats
    Fruits (Banana's)
    Cereal's, Pretzels, Pancake Mix (protein pancakes)

    Life is not about oats, broccoli, and quest bars.
    Just purely as a snack!

    I definitely know all that simple information

    I never said I was all about broccoli, oats and quest bars?
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Just purely as a snack!

    I definitely know all that simple information

    I never said I was all about broccoli, oats and quest bars?
    so what are you eating to get your fiber so high, i can bet those are 3 of your primary sources.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    so what are you eating to get your fiber so high, i can bet those are 3 of your primary sources.
    I didn't mean to say its too high, on IF I would have thought lowering my fibre would help my bloating.

    Not so much quest bars, I might have one every 3 days or so,

    Lots of oats, all kinds of fruit, veggies etc
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Lots of oats, all kinds of fruit, veggies etc
    This is exactly why your bloated,
    Fiber
    Fiber
    Fiber
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    This is exactly why your bloated,
    Fiber
    Fiber
    Fiber
    And limited amount of bread.

    Bloating is much better today from your advice

    Obviously with IF some people will need to reduce their fibre intake due to the body getting used to digesting 8 hours of food instead of all day
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    And limited amount of bread.

    Bloating is much better today from your advice

    Obviously with IF some people will need to reduce their fibre intake due to the body getting used to digesting 8 hours of food instead of all day
    too much fiber = bad, most people get too much and it does more harm than good on their digestive tract.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Solution View Post
    too much fiber = bad, most people get too much and it does more harm than good on their digestive tract.
    What's your thoughts on probiotics?
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    I'm a couple weeks in to this new lifestyle and loving it! I've def dropped some fat already.

    Things I really enjoy about it:
    1. less stress over when your next meal is going to be, fits better into your lifestyle, creates more room for productivity.
    2. once you enter the feeding period you are never hungry, definitely beats nibbling all day.
    3. you mentioned bloat, I felt less bloated not having food digesting in my stomach all day.
    4. going to bed full is amazing cuz it was always so hard for me to sleep hungry and that just created opportunities to stray from my diet.

    I do have one question for the experienced IF'ers tho... On the leangains page it talks about early morning fasted training. Wouldn't you want a post-workout shake along with the BCAAs to get some nutrition in your anabolic window? I know it would be breaking the fast so kind of a dilemma here for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MavGoose View Post
    I'm a couple weeks in to this new lifestyle and loving it! I've def dropped some fat already.

    Things I really enjoy about it:
    1. less stress over when your next meal is going to be, fits better into your lifestyle, creates more room for productivity.
    2. once you enter the feeding period you are never hungry, definitely beats nibbling all day.
    3. you mentioned bloat, I felt less bloated not having food digesting in my stomach all day.
    4. going to bed full is amazing cuz it was always so hard for me to sleep hungry and that just created opportunities to stray from my diet.

    I do have one question for the experienced IF'ers tho... On the leangains page it talks about early morning fasted training. Wouldn't you want a post-workout shake along with the BCAAs to get some nutrition in your anabolic window? I know it would be breaking the fast so kind of a dilemma here for me.
    Yeah I've definitely noticed I'm not going "I am starving I need to eat!"

    I have read that BCAAS are fine in the morning or during your fast because it has 0 calories
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    I read before that when doing IF that you should skip breakfast and do lunch/dinner.

    My schedule works better with doing Breakfast/Lunch and skipping dinner and thats how I did the IF when I tried it last time.

    Is doing breakfast and lunch and skipping dinner doable ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by gvdook View Post
    I read before that when doing IF that you should skip breakfast and do lunch/dinner.

    My schedule works better with doing Breakfast/Lunch and skipping dinner and thats how I did the IF when I tried it last time.

    Is doing breakfast and lunch and skipping dinner doable ?
    As long as the fasting is efficient enough time? I don't think it matters

    I am doing the 16-8

    As long as the lunch finishes and then you fast for a good period of time before you wake up and have your breakfast.
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    I finished lunch and my afternoon snack by 3pm usually and wouldnt eat again till 7am the next day. I guess I was doing a 16/8 also.

    I hate the fact that I stopped doing it. It really did make it easy for me to deal with hunger cravings. I have to stop letting peer pressure sucker me into eatting out or snacking so much.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gvdook View Post
    I finished lunch and my afternoon snack by 3pm usually and wouldnt eat again till 7am the next day. I guess I was doing a 16/8 also.

    I hate the fact that I stopped doing it. It really did make it easy for me to deal with hunger cravings. I have to stop letting peer pressure sucker me into eatting out or snacking so much.
    Not much different, as long as you're getting a fast in.

    With any diet plan takes lots of dedication
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsbhaver View Post
    Yeah I've definitely noticed I'm not going "I am starving I need to eat!"

    I have read that BCAAS are fine in the morning or during your fast because it has 0 calories
    No they are not... your not reading Martin's site at all dude.
    Only 10g before fasted training (if you do fasted training) thats it.
    if you train fed you can have them intra-workout.

    BCAA's cause an insulin spike alone, therefore your breaking your fast because BCAA's are protein, they are free forms.

    NO BCAA's during your fast... just water, coffee, tea etc.. unless your fasted training.. right off leangains guide.
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