/ This two fasting days a week diet thing... advice

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Exile - on 25 Apr 2013
Right - got a few friends who have tried this to good effect. I could improve my climbing by loosing 7 - 14lbs, but the full 14 would put me at 'pretty thin', (I'm 6ft 1in and that would take me down to 11 stone.) However, I do think I could do that healthily.


Does the diet work for 'taking that last bit of weight off' or is it more for people who are in a 'I want to go from 17 to 13 stone' position? (That probably isn't well put - no offence intended!)

And if it is for me, and people have tried it, how does it mix with reasonably intense training?

Thanks all.
madyarra - on 25 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile: Hi! If you use youtube, you can search for 'fasting twins' or 'hodgetwins'. They do intermittent fasting and all their advice is real world-real person advice. You also get great laughs but maybe not so great round kids as they can be controversial and swear. But they are dead serious about their fitness advice.

Also one of my mates i doing it but starting eating at 2pm through til an hour or two before bed with gym inbetween and he says it's great. I think depending on how extreme you go with added calorie control, this diet would work for anyone wanting to loose a mass of excess weight or those few more pounds to lean down and give themselves the added agility that would come with!
lost1977 - on 25 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

i would suggest the leangains approach to intermittent fasting (worked really well for me)
nasher47 on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

My understanding of fasting is that the principle benefit is actually in terms of health rather than weight-loss. (let's not forget that not eating in order to loose weight is probably verging on a troublesome eating disorder). When the body goes into "fasting mode" it stops replicating cells and starts to repair them instead thereby reducing the risk of cell mutations that cause illnesses such as cancer.
Unfortunately when training intensity is high you won't be able to maintain an intensive fasting program but health benefits have been displayed even from those who only fast once a week.
With this is mind the only way I can see to make fasting compatible with high intensity training is to ensure you have a properly structured training plan that has well engineered rest periods that can be used as fasting periods.

If you just want to lose weight then moderate what you eat and run more.
Ava Adore - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

My weight was pretty stable - ranging from 9 stone 3 to about 9 stone 7 - and has been for years without requiring too much effort to maintain.

I tried Intermittent Fasting for one day a week more for general health reasons than to diet. I have made no other changes to my lifestyle yet in about 6 weeks I went down to 8 stone 13. So if it works so well on one day a week I'd say it could be pretty effective on 2 days a week!

I still do as much activity as I did before - running, climbing and yoga - and don't feel IF has interfered with this at all.

Good luck!

P.S. Yesterday was an IF day. This morning I have just eaten a hot sausage roll from Costa downstairs. Ace.
Ava Adore - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to nasher47:

You do realise that the Intermittent Fasting (which I presume the OP is talking about) is not a complete fast - for men it's 600 calories on fast days.
Exile - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to madyarra:

Had a look at fasting twins last night - funniest thing I've seen in a long time, certainly beat TV last night!

Not the type of IF I had in mind, but stil really useful.

I get what they are doing but at certain points in a professional body builders training they will be training to exclusively loose body fat. So, as I want to maintain performance in climbing while loosing weight will it allow me to do this?

I often train between 6.30 and 7.30am and / or in the evening. To have a 8 hr eating window between 12.00 and 8.00pm would it really matter if I didn't take in protein after these training sessions?

To put this in context for me a good week at the moment is three runs, (30min - 1hr, the 30 min ones tend to be hill reps',) and four climbing, (these are rarely more than 2hrs but are usually quite intence - working a route, PE / E traverses, bouldering.)

Exile - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore:

Do you just make sure your fasting day is one you're not training on?
Skyfall - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

I did the 5:2 thing for about two months and lost almost a stone (I'm 6ft and went from 13.5st to almost 12.5st). I lost a lot of fat and a bit of muscle. My climbing grades improved rapidly as a result (before a shoulder injury recurrence). I have since then done the odd day of fasting as it does actually make me feel better.

I didn't do the eating window thing - just "fasted" (ie. less than 600 calories) from going to bed one night to getting up two days later. I found that, to avoid felling like death the next day, I had to consume all my calories in the evening (and have some sugar!),

I know a lot of people who have tried it and failed (to stick to it). It does take real discipline. It's hard if you have an active social and/or sporting life. I would question whether you can do it realistically if you are running 3 times a week and climbing 4x. Finding two days a week to fast is going to be hard for you I think. Whilst I did the 5:2 thing I did drop my normal exercise level a little as I thought the weight loss was worth it as a temporary measure. I did a couple of days during the week and left the weekend free to do whatever I wanted (eating/drinking/exercising).

It is hard to exercise actively on a fasting day (climb, yes, run not really I would say). I don't run but I do gym and, if I did gym on a fasting day, I had to keep aerobic exercise low. Remember that the 600 cal limit is not net of exercise, it's your gross limit.

Worth it imho if you want to lose weight fairly fast and can stick to it. I would agree with Ava that doing say one day a week would probably have similar albeit slower results and might be worth trying as you can then flex it more easily. I haven't put the weight back on and it's taught me a few things about how my body reacts to fasting and, as I say, I do it occasionally now because it makes me feel better and probably helps maintain what I consider to be a better weight for me.
Exile - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Skyfall:

Thanks for that - really useful.
The Bouldering Badger - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

I'm considering this myself. My parents have both done it with good results, interestingly they both claim to have more energy and feel less sluggish. Since I've been at uni I've dialed back the rugby and increased the beer intake with drastic consequences (my BMI now says I'm overweight and I've gained four inches around the waist.) The thing that is affecting my climbing most of all is my weight at the moment and I really want to improve.
Ava Adore - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

Unlike Skyfall I've not had real issues with exercising on a fast day. In fact, I often deliberately choose to do it as a way of being out of the house and not thinking about food!

But then my running during the week is generally short runs (max 6 miles but more often closer to 3), my climbing is punter level and yoga classes are only an hour.

I deliberately arrange it so that I don't fast near to my long runs (6 miles plus) on a Saturday morning. The only time I did have a problem was when I did a long run straight after a fast day and hadn't had time to have breakfast before running. The run was slow and I wilted considerably by the end!
Skyfall - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore:

Interesting the different experience. I could certainly exercise on a fasting day but not anything too tough or I would literally grind to a halt. I did also find it had a big impact on energy levels the next day (which I think you suggest) until I switched away from spreading my calorie intake across the day and just took it all in the evening - which sorted me out the day after (and meant I slept better).

I think that some people do advocate moderate exercise on a fast day but only moderate.
Ava Adore - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Skyfall:

Yeah I think my level of exercise can only really be considered "moderate"
Loughan - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore+Skyfall: Hi Guys, what books/sites did you use to read up/follow the plan. It sounds promising
Ava Adore - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Loughan:

I got info from a thread that lost1977 started on here. I was hugely sceptical to start with as I thought that intermittent fasting meant no food at all. Then I read a magazine article in the hairdressers extolling the virtues and decided to give it a try. There's a book called The Fast Diet that I bought from Tesco a few weeks ago which gives more background and some suggested menus for 500 (women) and 600 (men) calories.
Exile - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore:

What are some of the suggestions for 500 / 600 cal days menu choices?
SAF - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:
> (In reply to Ava Adore)
> What are some of the suggestions for 500 / 600 cal days menu choices?

Pick up the book "the Fast diet", it has menu ideas in there.

I normally go with two boiled eggs for breakfast, some raspberries or other lower sugar fruit as a snack, and fish (seabass is good) and veg for dinner.

I have lost 1 stone 4 pounds since New year by 5:2 fasting. I have done a lot less exercise than normal during this time due to other commitments/neck and shoulder problems, and since all weight loss in the past has relied heavily on exercise this is even more remarkable for me.
nasher47 on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore:
Yes, I do thank you, did you have an issue with any of the content of my post?
Ian Black - on 26 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile: As with lots of these fads no long term research is available. I thought about the lean gains approach as well and after reading pages of bumph decided against it. My personal views are you can achieve your target weight/body fat on the Paleo diet. The key to all this is keeping your insulin levels stable by avoiding starchy carbs. We don't need them, even for endurance training.
madyarra - on 27 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile: Hi! you could always have an amino acid intra workout drink if you're worried about burning muscle but to be honest i think you would be alright if not eating straight after a workout in thew morning. As for losing strength, i dont think that would be a problem either. I think with all diets and training you need to try it for a while and see how it effects YOU, everything is just a guideline, don't get bogged down with strict regimes.

Have you been to a kettlebells class? brilliant for conditioning, strength and complete body balance. Don't go to kettlercise, find a quality hardstyle instructor or club. Its great for you're whole body!
madyarra - on 27 Apr 2013
In reply to Ian Black: Totally agree with the starchy carbs comment, wholegrain carbs are ok in moderation but strictly having no white carbs will make you feel amazing after a few weeks and you'll have loads more energy!
Ava Adore - on 27 Apr 2013
In reply to Exile:

My 500 calories is generally something along the lines of:

Breakfast - apple
Lunch - small piece of grilled chicken with salad, no dressing
Dinner - small tin beans + slice of toast, no butter
Evening - small portion fruit (generally strawberries as they fill me up more)
Exile - on 28 Apr 2013
In reply to Ava Adore:

Thanks for that.
gavina on 15 May 2013
I find just not eating, eg after breakfast until the next breakfast, is much easier than trying to manage down your intake to 500/600 cal through the day. No decisions to make, you don't have to stop yourself overeating at meals, as you don't have meals. Once in fasting mode, having something to eat just wakes up my appetite and I have to go through the hard part of getting back to fasting all over again (actually I don't bother, I give up and try again some other day). Also, after doing it for a bit I actually look forward to the mental state of fasting, which makes me feel calm and kind of ethereal. Hard to tell if there's anything in it, but presumably any health gains from fasting are maximised if you stop eating altogether.

Nobody is going to be pushing not eating, as it means there's nothing to sell on the back of it.

Biggest problem i find, it can exaggerate any depression you may be feeling. But if that happens I just give up, and then do it again some other day.

I don't weigh myself, but pretty sure it reduces fat, and it makes me feel fantastic.

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