Now let us address the title below of losing fat while gaining muscle. One day my cousin says, “Hey bro, you should try Intermittent Fasting.” That was the first time I had heard about it in detail. After inquiring, I realized that I was too stuck on my ways with carbohydrate cycling until I over exhausted my body one day from (just to recap) lifting every single day in combination with cardio. My body, muscles, and mind were beyond exhausted. I said, “Okay let’s give Intermittent Fasting a try and see what happens.” As far as the “diet” goes, actually I do not consider this a “diet” as much as a way of life, because once you learn how to master the art of eating properly (which is not rocket science), you’re actually changing your life for the better, not temporarily like “diets” do. So it is quite simple; you calculate the total amount of calories you are to consume in the day which is less than you should consume on a daily basis. A simple and accurate formula is: Multiply your current weight x 10 = Total number of calories to consume daily. i.e Mine is 164 x 10 = 1640 total calories to consume daily. This will put you at a good deficit to allow you to lose a good amount of weight.
Now the fasting portion. Before we dive into this, ask yourself, “Can I learn to skip, forget, annihilate the thought of eating breakfast?” Fasting means goodbye to eating breakfast, hence fasting. You will eat at minimum 5–8 hours after waking up in the am. Before you start with, “OMG, I can’t do that I’ll get a headache.” Blah blah other excuses. Assuming you do not have some underlying or debilitating health issue(s) that would stop you, just give it a try… I said the same thing, that I would be moody and would not function and made excuses until I tried it. Furthermore, it changed my life to where I will never eat breakfast again (Not excluding breakfast food. You can eat that 5–8 hours after waking. That is perfectly fine!). Obviously you will feel a bit hungry. That is inevitable, however there are methods to blunt hunger such as caffeine in the form of black coffee (no creamer please as it has calories), green tea (a favorite of many of my colleagues), and lastly sparkling water with 0 calories such as Perrier, and San Pellegrino which are fantastic. Now get this, not only will you lose weight while doing Intermittent Fasting but you will enjoy other major health benefits which are highlighted quite well in this article. I encourage you all to do more research, as with anything in your life:
The science behind fasting and losing weight is your body takes your current fat and metabolizes it or burns it as an energy source so you stay alive, since your body is not getting calories from food you would normally be eating. Think of your body as a fire place, while fasting your body’s fat is being thrown into the flame as logs are and are burned in exchange for warmth or heat, the flame then becomes brighter and more powerful. The same occurs with your body and mind. Beautiful, right? Take that excess fat! nobody wants you! So everyday after your fast you eat your large, delicious meals, then your body takes in the calories you have calculated and distributes the proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Thus feeding your body’s daily needed intake and avoids storing any additional calories as fat. Brilliant !
The beauty about Intermittent Fasting is you can eat your favorite foods like pizza, burgers, or chili cheese fries (!!) and STILL lose weight as long as you stay under your total calories, which the formula above puts you at. However please bear in mind, you must eat clean for the majority of all meals. Have a balanced view. Although it is possible to eat your favorite foods and lose weight, you get what you put in, as far as quality goes. I have in fact noticed the major difference on how I feel from reducing garbage foods to high quality in a matter of days. My point is please use your brain. A supporting scientific research-based article that is a must-read on proof of how eating at a deficit and counting your calories while eating your favorite foods still leads to weight loss is (for the doubters):
How will you know how many calories foods have? A fantastic tool to use via your phone is the app: MyFitnessPal. This app enables you to search for different foods. Calorie totals and specific restaurant foods are listed. Please download it and use it but do not obsess over it. Be reasonable. As long as you’re close enough to your deficit calories, you will still see results.
Intermittent Fasting is not really meant for those who run marathons or play certain sports that burn a substantial amount of calories at a given time. It would not be optimal for your body since the principle keeps your body at a deficit of calories. Please use your discretion and/or speak to your doctor first.
I hope you will feel and enjoy all the health benefits that come with Intermittent Fasting. Weight loss, mental clarity, and energy are my top favorites. I hope Intermittent Fasting can change your life as it has mine. On the next post I will discuss muscle gains while burning fat. I am developing an at-home workout plan designed for anybody who wants to make a giant change in how they feel and look while living a busy life that does not allow you to make it to the gym. Please stay tuned friends.
Let’s recap: Calculate your calories
- Wake up in the am, eat 5–8 hours later.
- Drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water for hydration throughout the day.
- Black coffee without creamer or green tea to blunt hunger (4 cups max). **while Fasting only**
- Eat up to 2–3 separate big meals that stay within your total calories. I recommend balanced meals. For example, 2 boiled chicken breasts with a handful of vegetables and 2 sweet potatoes sprinkled by brown sugar — Approx. 450 cals
- Walk about 1 hour daily. I prefer to do this when fasting early in the morning but please do it whenever is most convenient for you. Form a habit and stick to it.
That is all, for now. Please feel free to email me, snap me for any questions or concerns and I will be more than happy to help you out with whatever I can. Stay strong!