Managing Your Macros 4: Intermittent Fasting, Hearty Breakfast

Whoops: a typical can of Coke is 12oz not 32oz. I was thinking of those uber beer cans.

Remember how to drink more water: increase your water intake is to put down more earlier in the day.

The best resource for comprehensive Intermittent Fasting information is through Andy Morgan and his website RippedBody. But for a very simple and streamlined breakdown, let’s do a “part one” of what IF is and how it can work.

Fasting/Feeding Windows

Everybody fasts, just like how everybody has a diet. It’s just that the restriction will vary from person to person. If we can understand a “diet” as the typical consumption of food, then a “fast” is simply the amount of time you go without eating in between meals.

Fasting can be used for religious purposes, but in the fitness community, you’ll see it pop us “intermittent fasting”. And instead of dealing with the time between each meal, the focus is on the time between the last meal of the day and the first meal of the next day.

Ah! Breakfast— makes sense, huh?

If you eat dinner at 7:30 and finish at 8:00, then don’t eat anything again until breakfast at 7:00– you’ve held an 11 hour fast.

With intermittent fasting, most people will cut out breakfast to create a longer fasting window. For example, finish dinner at 8:00PM, skip breakfast, then have lunch at 1:00 PM. Now you’ve held a 17 hour fast.

A 17 hour fast with a 7 hour feeding window.

In the feeding window, you could do a big lunch with a smaller dinner. You could do three meals in between. You could even do six meals if you’d like just as long as you stay in that feeding window. Fasting isn’t about starving yourself. It’s delaying the calories until later.

Nutritional Priorities

So without even touching on the science and advanced application, why does IF work? Well, by taking out one meal, you’re already reducing calories. Remember the nutritional priorities: 1) overall caloric intake 2) macros 3) timing and frequency.

You can also interpret it as: it’s going to be harder to overeat when you have two meals instead of three. You limit the opportunities to have a caloric excess.

It’s not so much that the timing is “magic”, but if you take out breakfast, that can be a significant chunk of calories for people who like to eat hearty breakfasts.

“Hearty Breakfast” Macros

For this week’s macros set, let’s breakdown a typical hearty breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausage, and pancakes.

  • Eggs – 5F, 0C, 6P per egg
  • Bacon – 4F, 0C, 8P per strip
  • Sausage – 4F, 0C, 6P per link
  • Pancakes – 7F, 44C, 6P per Aunt Jemima 3 Stack

If we total up 2 eggs, 2 strips of bacon, 2 sausage links, plus the 3 stack of pancakes we net: 33F, 44C, 46P.

In the context of my own daily macros of 50F, 200C, and 150P it fits. But, staying under my fats for the rest of the day would be a little tricky. If I have a clean slate to work with for lunch and dinner, I get more options to eat, ya know?

Some people swear by intermittent fasting, but you don’t have to do IF. Fasting can be a way to address your overall calories. Just remember that’s the key: your overall calories. Don’t have that in order? Then, it doesn’t matter what your frequency and timing is.

If you’d like to give IF a shot, I recommend easing into the fasting window. I think it’s easier to cut off the dinner time the night before than to extend the delay of first meal. So instead of prolonging lunch to 2 or 3, try cutting off dinner at 7 or 8.

Progression of Success

Quick soapbox here: in your quest for success, don’t confuse doable with realistic or practical.

I got hit with a spam post on Twitter:

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I have no problem being happy for a stranger’s success. Maybe she really did lose 56 lbs thanks to IF alone with zero exercise.

That’s doable for sure. No red flags on that front.

But is it realistic? Should everybody be expecting to lose that much that fast? I don’t think so.

Is it practical? Is that approach going to be the easiest fit for most people’s lifestyles? I can’t really say…

When people see these kinds of results online or in ads, it can skew actual progression that’s being made. You see the same thing happen with money. For instance, a decent salary seems less valuable when you find out other people are doing less work and getting paid more. Should that take away from what you’ve been able to earn? No.

But does it feel like less value? Sure.

It’s a trap! Buyer beware!


Hey, your’e getting the hang of this thing, eh? If you have a macros suggestion or question, send it our way to be featured on the podcast. E-mail: aoabbu [at] gmail.com

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