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Do you fast on workout or rest days?

Home Forums Intermittent Fasting Forum Workouts and Weight Training Do you fast on workout or rest days?

This topic contains 15 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  lisa 9 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #2294

    lisa
    Participant

    I’ve heard that you should fuel your workout. Or that you you should fuel your recovery.

    I notice that women in my gym doing one or the other.

    What works best for you if you’ve played around with it?

  • #2295
    Isabelle
    Isabelle
    Participant

    I do it either way. I don’t have a set schedule, I “don’t eat” when it feels right for me. But lately I like to workout fasted, it just feels better.

  • #2296

    Catherine
    Participant

    I don’t think it makes that much difference really. I’ve fasted on workout days and I think it helps the body burn fat. But that’s just anecdote not science. I’m usually fasted before my workouts because I workout in the morning. Even when I’m not I don’t eat much more than some fruit or coffee with milk. I don’t like working out after eating. I’ve never noticed any appreciable boost from eating before working out. Caffeine is better for that.

  • #2297

    donna
    Participant

    If I can’t get my workouts done in the morning then I fast on my rest days..For me, I feel weaker going all day without eating and then lifting….

  • #2298

    Cyndi
    Participant

    I have been breakfast eater before I met ESE. I thought I would faint if I did not have any food on my stomach when I work out. But fasting and working out feels great. I do not do more than 24 hour fast. So I do not know how 36 hour fast work with exercise.

  • #2299
    Isabelle
    Isabelle
    Participant

    Cyndi, this was me too. And actually some of my friends here would laugh because I said constantly that I could not workout out fasted. I always ate, worked out, then fasted. Also I’ve eaten breakfast all my life and now I don’t. But I have noticed that once I got low body fat level I can’t fast for very long (well I can but my body has a hard time with it for days afterwards), so instead if I want to slowly lean out a bit that fasted workouts is the way to go. It doesn’t work for me if I don’t go to the gym by noon at the latest (I feel too weak).

    Actually I found that working out fasted is the best way for me to cut fat while I’m lean (since long fasts don’t work for me anymore). I also have to take the cutting calories very slow and not much of a deficit.

    Like fasting when I was still over weight, it’s mind over matter. It truly is a mind game. If I say “I can’t” well then I can’t. I find this is true for me but also the body tells me in a very real way that I truly can’t do certain things while I lean (this was the tipping point for me).

  • #2300
    Kelly
    Kelly
    Participant

    I definitely workout fasted. My workout truly is a bad one if I workout fed. I am sluggish and weaker. So fasted and in the morning is optimal for me.

    I am trialling a creatine and BCAA approach from Martin Leangains right now.

  • #2304

    sharon
    Participant

    I workout best fasted for sure. I just have more pump. Eating beforehand somehow makes me feel sluggish. I’ve done personal testing with creatine and bcaas. I take both though I have worked out without them, w/o issue too. However, for me I feel just that bit better especially when I am actually consistently low cal. When I am more fed, the bcaas may not be as necessary.

    If I had to have one or the other, I’d take creatine. Lifts are better. The bcaas I take I like also for electrolytes.

  • #2312

    Eva
    Participant

    My best workouts are when fasted. About 12-18 hr fast esp. Coffee and water helps me out with the workout too.

  • #2313

    lisa
    Participant

    Fasted workout peeps – overnight fast and morning workout? We’re switching to evening workouts for now as the gym is under construction and the windows are boarded. With the short days, I don’t want to miss out on daylight. So I am not planning any fasted workouts until they give us light again but the longest I feel like I can go is about 1pm for a good fasted workout after an overnight fast. Is there some trick to going longer like BCAAs? I’ve done an evening workout after a full day fast from the night before and it’s very hit or miss.

  • #2315

    helen
    Participant

    I just recently read Eat Stop Eat, so it’s still in my mind. I believe there is some research that shows that working out fasted does have benefits that working out fueled doesn’t. The author says that, unless you’re coming off a very long fast, or working out at the end of your fast, there shouldn’t be much difference in performance between fasted and non-fasted workouts. Having to eat before a workout is apparently all in our heads. Disclaimer: Despite having read this last week, I still feel the need to eat before I work out.

  • #2317

    Jan
    Participant

    I workout mid morning…..luckily I can do that with my flexible work hours and running my own businesses. When I was working corporate I used to workout in the evening at about 8pm after work but before dinner and once per week at 6.30am. Neither are optimal for me. My workouts were never as good.

    I still think in slight advantage you get in hormonal profile from working fasted vs non…and even making a longer fast vs a 16 hour window is negligible compared to having a really good workout and keeping your weekly calories low enough. To get the best results focus on the basics and don’t stress the details.

  • #2319

    Gloria
    Participant

    Hmmm…well, I know it’s not popular in these here parts to admit such things, but I will do so anyway.

    Now, keep in mind this is probably at least partly due to my own programming/self talk, but my experiment of one shows I just do better and grow better when I eat surrounding my workouts. I do not have sluggishness working out fed and I much prefer to be fed. I don’t have a fussy tummy, so I never have GI issues even if I workout immediately after eating.

    I can do cardio either way and I always do my cardio fasted for potential fat burning advantages, but I need that energy and full feeling to workout my muscles hard as I like to. And I do believe for muscle repair and protein synthesis purposes, many studies bear out that there are advantages to feeding the muscles surrounding workouts. Of course there are studies to the contrary as well, but that is the way of things.

    RE: BCAA’s, I have been using them and Creatine INSTEAD of protein shake. I know some studies showing that BCAA intake stimulates protein synthesis even in the absence of food, so if calorie restriction is your aim, or if you are working out fasted, BCAA’s can help a lot.

    So that is my strategy…fasted morning cardio, keep my fast til noon or later, eat a decent lunch, do my resistance training with BCAA’s and Creatine, then cook a nice big dinner complete with carbs. Rinse. Repeat.

  • #2323

    lisa
    Participant

    Thanks, Gloria! I think your plan is going to fit in with my recomp/get back what I lost from illness goals! Especially as we are now back to working out in the evening – there was just no way I was going to fast THAT long and then expect a depleted body to pick up heavy shit multiple times a week. More power to those that can swing that!

    My current “cardio” plan is actually a Get Shit Done plan. As in, no machines. Actual useful tasks, best done with that coffee morning buzz and no food. Don’t you find that when you don’t eat and you start getting physical tasks done, you just go go go but if you eat, you lose focus/steam and it’s all over?

  • #2325

    Gloria
    Participant

    Yeas, Lisa! Housework Freaking COUNTS! Just stay a’moving, right? I’m actually kinda’ the opposite from you though. If I don’t eat, I’m comatose, just sit and stare off into space. Which is fine, I know when I’m fasting, I will just stay low. But if I have a big meal I’m buzzing all around.

    Also, I tend to get nauseated when I’m hungry and especially if I exert myself. I’ve been trying fasts of different lengths for a long time now and it never really has gotten better for me. When I try to workout on an empty stomach, I always end up sitting on the floor next to the dumb bells with dry heaves. So, I guess this kind of explains everything. We are ALL DIFFERENT. I don’t see a percentage in trying to force myself to do long fasts or workout fasted when it’s proven itself to be so uncomfortable and counter productive for me.

  • #2326

    lisa
    Participant

    Gloria, so interesting. I have always been more like you, never would consider moving without eating. And my husband has always been the dry heaves type if he eats; all his life if he’s eaten within like 8 hours of any exercise, he’s puking behind a tree. I saw him actually puke enough times in our early dating days to believe him and stop forcing him to eat before we played.

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