You’ve heard of Intermittent Fasting (IF). You know it works. You want to try it for yourself. But you hesitate to get started because it all seems so complicated. Y
That ends now. Here’s everything you do know about getting started and achieving success.
IF involves restricting eating to certain eating windows. So the real issue is…
Finding The Best Eating Window
The most popular method of this is the Lean Gains method of 16 hours of fasting and an 8-hour eating window. But that doesn’t mean it’s the “best” window. If you have a busy lifestyle and you’re always on the run, 16/8 might not be the best approach.
The best window for you to follow is going to be one you can stick to.
Your fasting window can fluctuate on a daily basis and that’s exactly how mine works. Some days I’ll fast for 14 hours and some days I’ll fast for 20 hours. That’s the beauty of fasting; it works around your lifestyle.
Think about how your days look and what’s going to work best for you. An example could be:
*On Monday, Wednesday and Friday you fast for 16 hours
*On Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday you fast for 18 or 20 hours because your work hours are more hectic.
Don’t obsess over your fasting and feasting period. Sometimes you may hit the 16-hour mark and you may not be hungry yet if that’s the case you can keep fasting.
This is not a square peg In a circle hole approach. Find out what hours work best for your lifestyle and go from there.
How To Train In The Morning
How do you manage your training around your fasting window if you like to train in the morning? The issue with morning workouts is that you risk losing muscle mass. This is because when your body doesn’t have any access to protein, it will start eating away your muscle. Firstly, don’t spend your money on BCAA’S. Studies have shown that they aren’t going to help with maintaining or gaining muscle. You’re pissing away your money if you’re still taking them. Instead, you have two options.
Option One: Use EAA’S
Essential Amino Acids (EAA’S) are amino acids that your body needs and they’re different from BCAA’S because BCAA’S aren’t essential. EAA’S do cost a little more money than BCAA’S but this is a surefire way to make sure that you’re not risking any muscle mass. Depending on what brand you use will depend on the serving size and calorie amount that they contain. Usually, a scoop of EAA’s will be about 30 calories. If you use this option I recommend you choose flavoured Amino’s because unflavored will make you want to throw up (I’m not kidding).
Option Two: Have a scoop of whey protein powder.
Yes, this will break your fast but you’re not risking losing muscle mass and you’re helping with muscle growth. Have a scoop of whey protein after your workout and then continue fasting until your first meal. As long as you track those 130 calories that come from a scoop of protein powder in your macros you’re going to be fine.
Training In The Evening
If you like to train after work in the evening hours, then training in a fasted state is a non-issue for you. Have one or two meals before your training session depending on personal preference. Make sure to have some carbs that can give you energy for the workout. If your last meal will be two hours or more before your workout, eat some slow digesting carbs like sweet potato or oats with a source of protein. Here’s a pre-workout meal that you can have two hours before your workout:
* 150g of meat
* 1/2 medium sweet potato
* 1 handful of cooked broccoli
If you’re going to eat closer to your workout then you want something that’s easier to digest. A piece of fruit like an apple or a banana with a scoop of protein is a great option.
What To Drink When Fasting
If you get bored of black coffee, here are some other options that you can use to make it taste better. I’d suggest buying yourself an Aeropress or French Press to make your own. Buying different types of coffee beans will let you experience the robust taste and flavors that coffee can have. I recommend trying a brand called Caveman coffee. The benefit is that is will taste 100X better than what you buy from a normal coffee shop.
Adding natural sweetener can also make it more enjoyable to drink. I like to use stevia, but if you don’t have stevia you can use any other natural sweetener. Another option is adding cinnamon and or nutmeg to your coffee. It sounds unusual but worth the try . Make sure you use raw cinnamon and not cinnamon sugar. Before adding it to your coffee, check the label to make sure it’s 100% raw ingredients.
If you can’t stand your black coffee, then add some milk to it. Milk does break your fast but if having 100ml of milk in your coffee helps you keep away from food longer then I see that as a win. Your goal is to be in a calorie deficit to lose weight. 100ml of half and half milk in your coffee is only 30 calories so just make sure you track it. Don’t go overboard with milk and make sure you track the calories if you do choose to add it to your coffee.
Water can also get boring after a while so there are a few ways to give it a kick in the pants and bring it to life.⠀⠀⠀⠀
Lemon Water: Cut a lemon in half and squeeze it in the water. Save the other half of the lemon for later on or the next day.
Sparkling Water: Carbonated water adds some variety and fills your stomach. I like to add 1 – 2 tsp of stevia in my sparkling water to make it fizzy. If you’ve got some vanilla essence pop a few droppers of that in there too.
Acv + 2 – 3 tsp of stevia: Apple cider vinegar tastes horrible on its own but here’s how to make it more tolerable. Fill up your bottle with 12 oz of water, add in two tsp of ACV and then 2 – 3 tsp of natural stevia. It doesn’t taste amazing but it tastes better than plain water or a shot of ACV that’s for sure.
Fresh herbs and spices in your water: Basil (for a licorice taste), lemongrass (for a kick of citrus), lavender (floral aroma), peppermint or cinnamon can quickly lend a lot of flavor to your water. Get creative with your herbs and try different combinations to keep things interesting.
Slice up some cucumber: Add a few slices with some mint to your water and you’ll be feeling refreshed and energised.
Energy drinks, 0 calorie soft drinks and unsweetened tea are also good to have during your fasting period. Anything with 0 calories that helps you stay away from food longer and stay in a calorie deficit is what you’re aiming for. If a coke zero does that for you, then have the Coke Zero. Use Intermittent Fasting to suit YOUR lifestyle and work around YOU not the other way.
What A Day Of Eating Looks Like
Currently, my goal is to lose fat which means I’m in a calorie deficit and eating 2000 calories a day. I want to give you an example of how a day of eating usually looks for me.
9:30 am Meal 1, Smoothie
* 2 scoop chocolate protein powder
* 3/4 cup Silk Almond milk, dark chocolate
* tbsp walnuts
* 2 tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
* 1 tbsp cacao nibs
* 1 handful of strawberries
* 4 ice cubes
* ¼ cup water
12:00pm – Train
1:30 pm Meal 2, (post workout)
* 200g (about 4 oz.) of beef, fish or chicken
* 1 medium sweet potato
* 2 cups of mixed vegetables and salad
5:00 pm Meal 3:
* 8 oz. lean ground beef
* 1-cup spinach with 1 tbsp. olive oil
* 1 cup rice
* 1-cup strawberries
5:30 pm Fast for at least 16 hours
I like to start fasting earlier in the day because it helps me avoid the temptations of nighttime eating.
If I were to train early in the morning here’s what my day would look like:
6:00 am – Train
7:00 am – Drink 1 scoop of protein powder with water
11:30 am – Break my fast with my smoothie
2:00 pm – Meal 2
5:00 pm – Meal 3
5:30 pm Fast for at least 16 hours
Make It Work For You
Figure out what eating plan is going to best suit your life. Find out what beverages help keep hunger away and don’t get caught up in a certain “fasting and feeding time”. If you follow the guide above and use fasting to your advantage it’s going to be much easier to lose fat.
Want To Learn More?
If you want to know more about making Intermittent Fasting work for you and how to achieve a lean body. Then I’ve got the perfect thing for you. My amazon best selling book “Ditch The Diet” is the best resource there is on this subject and you can get it now by clicking here.