In an earlier post, I talked about my experience with Intermitted fasting or IF for short. I am not following the 16/8 rule that rigorously anymore for reasons that are already explained. What I do want to touch on in this blog are some food intake strategies or at the very minimum some food for thought J how one can manipulate food intake and play with variables like time of intake and actual content of intake. Small disclaimer, this blog is about pragmatically looking at food from my point of view. And most of the time I look at food from a nutritionally and energy standpoint. That means, again most of the time, that I don’t sit down and enjoy food with a glass of wine and enjoy the taste, smell and secondary effects of sharing a meal with friends. Obviously I do that, with great delight also. Although I do have to confess that I consume my meals by the former method just described above. One of the reason why I look at food from that standpoint is because I see the obesity epidemic that our culture is facing and I do not want to be part of it. Period. I think me view point is at its core a coping mechanism for dealing with the situation. But I digress..
Another disclaimer. [Last one, I promise] The things that I am going to explain works really well for me. My body type is what’s considered an ectomorph. That means that my metabolism goes trough the roof and I have a hard time gaining weight. That goes for fat and muscle. The former is nice and the latter sucks when you want to bulk up. I am also quite active and working out at least 4 times a week hard in the gym or running outside.
In my experience and having read and seen other IF enthusiasts, doing Intermitted fasting for true ectomorphs who want to bulk up and get some size is hard. But of course not impossible. I think we put too much stress on the body by not eating consecutive and thereby having sub optimal recovery times. It is for this reason that I start eating almost directly when I wake up. And I follow Tim Ferriss’s his rule of 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes after waking up. But I also follow Martain Berkhan’s rule of eating around 60% of my daily caloric intake after my workout. Which is almost always after 18:00. My morning meal looks like this:
A [big] shake that is made in the blender and is comprised of the following ingredients:
- Spinach or beets
- MCT oil
- Protein powder [unflavoured]
- Fruit like berries, strawberries, watermelon,
- Algae like spirulina or chlorella
This shake is comprised of a lot of fibres, proteins, good fats and has minimal amounts of carbohydrates. Which I want to preserve for after my workout when my muscles are depleted of glucose and my glucose update is improved. A shake like this will keep you full for hours and has a good steady energy release effect. I have about 2 more meals before my workout. These meals are comprised of most of the remaining fat calories that I want to consume that day. Which in total is about 30 grams. I am one of those high carb [250+ grams per day] and low fat [±25 grams per day] guy. It is quite funny to see the attack on carbs and how a lot of people praise fats nowadays. Of course there is scientific merit for that, but some people make it come across that it is on or the other. Which is horse crap of course. Although I do have to say that the quality of the carbs is paramount. The only simple sugars I consume are pure honey straight from the bee keeper. The rest of the carbs are comprised of quinoa, rice, sweet potato, vegetables, roots and tubers. I do have to mention that I don’t really consume beans. I get super bloated even after soaking the beans for 24+ hours. I have not figured out if bloating is a sign of my body to warn me to not eat a certain type of food. It does not give me unpleasant feelings or cramps or anything.
The remaining 60% of my calories are consumed after a demanding workout to give the body enough food to repair and improve itself. And hopefully get some super compensation. With that, I do a 24 hour fast every 2 weeks. For me, that’s always on a Saturday for personal reasons. To still get the autophagy benefits of IF. And I do a 48 hour fast every 2 months so that’s 4 a year. Will this routine give me the same benefits of following the 16/8 protocol? I doubt it. But one has to make compromises. Life is a trade-off in my opinion. I will probably do more IF as I get older and I will probably eat less carbs when I get older and be less physical active.
Hopefully, this method of thinking and seeing what is possible with regard to food intake and timing will give you some ideas to experiment. Remember, there is a shit load [literally] of information on the internet about food from so called experts. But if information is the only aspect of importance, everybody these days is ripped, super smart, productive as f*ck and knows how to beat the stock market. But surprise, surprise, the opposite is rather true.
Only information that is acted upon is of true value. So, test, test and iterate where possible. This does not only mean for your diet but I would say for everything. The ‘truth’ is out there, somewhere. But the actual location where you can find it differs for most people. But hopefully you have some fun in finding it. Your ‘journey’ will go [most of the time] effortless.
As always, have fun and enjoy the ride.
Ruud - Co-Founder Pulve