Unlocking Your Potential with Intermittent Fasting
Ok, now it’s time to talk about Intermittent Fasting and how it may be the missing piece to unlock your full potential.
There are so many reasons to incorporate Intermittent Fasting into your lifestyle… if your goal is to create a healthy, strong, and powerful mind and body.
Before we get into the Why and How of Intermittent Fasting, we need to first dispel a few myths.
Myth #1. You need to eat every few hours or you will lose your precious muscle.
Contrary to “traditional” wisdom taught to body builders over the past century, your body simply does not need to eat every three hours to maintain your precious muscle.
If this were the case, we would all wake up with less muscle than we had before going to bed. Of course, you know this does not happen. Rather, you are more likely to see your abs and also greater muscle definition upon rising in the morning. Not only that, but you probably feel alert, energized, and ready to take on the day… most days!
Well, when we sleep our bodies go through the very natural process of switching our energy source from glucose to fatty-acids and fatty-acid derived ketones (if you are a reasonably healthy man). Not only that, bodies repair and regenerate the vital tissues and organs, which occurs while we are fasting!
Most healthy men wake up in a state of mild ketosis. And that is a very good place to be from a fat loss and muscle gain perspective. We will discuss the amazing science behind this very natural process shortly.
Myth #2 – You should strive to be in an anabolic state all the time.
This one is laughable since you simply cannot be “anabolic” 24 hours per day. And spending some time in a “catabolic” state is critical to experiencing the full benefits of the anabolic time period. The key is to alternate one with the other and then watch your fat levels go down while your muscles grow… it’s a beautiful thing.
In line with this, many top body builders have said “Sleep is the most anabolic thing you can do for your body” – this may sound counterintuitive on the surface but in this section, we will explore the many reasons why good quality sleep combined with intermittent fasting represent the a potent anabolic combo (even though we recognize that these are technically “catabolic” activities).
In the sections below, we will go into detail about how critical the “catabolic” activities of sleep, fasting, and exercise (yes, exercise is a catabolic activity) are to your muscle growth.
Myth #3 – Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Most people think that they need to eat very soon after awakening and/or the minute they feel a little hungry. By eating breakfast right away, they miss out on the many benefits that occurs from extending the fasting period to be 14-16 hours (or even longer) every day.
The key is to train your body to use your own fat and ketones, rather than your precious muscle, for energy. Then while you are fasting, your body goes to work repairing any muscle or tissue damage that occurred from your training sessions (see our recommended program), while simultaneously using your own stored fat for energy.
Not only that, but your body is in a similar state hormonally speaking as when you have just trained (low insulin but high growth hormone and testosterone levels). So you now have the potential to experience two anabolic spikes each day – one following your first meal after your 14-16 hours fast, and the other being your post-workout meal, if you train in the evening.
Does this sound too good to be true?
The good news is that it is not and scientific studies over the past century support the multiple benefits of Intermittent Fasting, particularly for men. Sometimes in life, the solutions are so simple that we miss them.