Sunday, October 23, 2011

Intermittent Thoughts On Intermittent Fasting - Exercise (2/3): Opening the "Anabolic Barn Door" With the Key of Exercise and Nutrition Science!

Image 1: The "anabolic window" turns out to be more of a barn door, which is unlocked by the key of exercise and nutrition science (Random House Books)
Looking back, the main take-aways from the last installment were the dependence of exercise performance on adequate and not so much constant energy supply, as discussed in the context of the Ramadan fasting soccer players, the increased AMPK response to fasted training on a hypercaloric diet, which would suggest that things like "fasted cardio" in the morning could well have it's place in an intermittent fasting regimen even when you are bulking (in order to ward off fat gains), and, last but not least, the differential AMPK- and p70S6K protein synthetic response of cyclists and powerlifters to unaccustomed training stimuli. Accordingly, a versatile training routine that is timed in a way that allows you to train fasted or semi-fasted training, i.e. having your first easily digestible high protein meal / supplement ~30min-1h before you hit the gym, will certainly help with lean gains and muscle-sparing fat loss.

How to train if someone "just wants to look good naked"?

While the observations of the Coffey study (Coffey. 2005) did underline the importance of versatility, or, I should say constant "novelty", or at least modification of the training stimuli, they did not really provide any clues on how someone, who "just wants to look good naked" (and I assume this applies to the majority of non-athletes, today) should train to transform his formerly at best non-obese physique to the cover-model'ish look everybody is aspiring these days.
Figure 1: Study design of the Vissing study with its 10-week preconditioning phase for the strength and endurance training groups (generated based on information from Vissing. 2011)
In regard to this question, a similar, yet more recent study on non-athletes comes to mind. In the course of the latter, K. Vissing and his colleagues from Aarhus, Denmark, and Geelong, Australia, took a closer look at the response of the "AMPK/mTOR seesaw" to either endurance or strength training (Vissing. 2011) after a comparatively brief per-conditioning period of 10 weeks (cf. illustration 1) - a scenario of which we can expect more reliable results than from its "highly trained recreational athletes" counterpart from the Coffey study, where the participants have been focusing on training for their respective sport (cycling or powerlifting) for years. Accordingly, Vissing et al. expected to see that...
[...] mTORC1 signaling would be selectively activated by SE [strength training], whereas AMPK signaling would be activated by both types of exercise but to a relatively higher degree after EE [endurance exercise] compared with SE [...]
Thus, their research hypothesis was in accordance with the publicly accepted idea that only strength training builds muscle (obviously the role of mTOR-activation in this process is widely unknown in the general public), while endurance exercise would be the better form to train if one wanted to lose fat - as a diligent reader of the SuppVersity, you will obviously be aware that the reduction in adipose tissue you will hopefully observe, when you are dieting, is primarily a result of the depletion of muscular (and hepatic) ATP stores, which brings the AMPK energy emergency police on the scene which will concomitantly tell your muscles to suck up all extra (i.e. more than your brain needs) glycogen from your blood stream and kick your adipocytes' asses, so that they release some of their fatty energy reserves as metabolic firewood for your mitochondria.
I hope you remember "The 'hungry' side of neuronal AMPK activation", i.e. the differential effects of AMPK phosphorylation in reaction to energy shortage in muscle or liver tissue vs. its effects in the brain. If not, I suggest you (re-)read the respective passage in "AMPK III/III: Natural Rythmicity for Maximum Fat & Minimal Muscle Loss", as a thorough understanding of this difference if of utmost importance if you want to be able to compare and interpret the data from various studies correctly.
The Coffey study (discussed in the last installment) did however show that this assumption, i.e. both endurance, as well as strength training will always increase AMPK, does not hold true, when we are talking about highly trained athletes - neither in the cyclists nor in the powerlifters from the Coffey study did engaging in their respective discipline produce statistically significant increases in AMPK phosphorylation.
Figure 2: AMPK phosphorylation (0, 2.5, 5 and 22h post) and approximate area under the respective curces (small graph) during post-exercise recovery from single-bout exercise, conducted with an exercise mode to which the exercise subjects were accustomed through 10 weeks of prior training (data calculated based on Vissing. 2011)
Conversely, in the Vissing study, AMPK phosphorilation did transiently increase in both the strength and endurance trained groups immediately post (at 0h) exercise (cf. figure 2). However, with the subsequent drop of the phosphorylated AMPK (pAMPK) below the values of the control groups, the estimated area under the curve (AUC; I simply used weighed averages for the calculation), i.e. the absolute AMPK phosphorylation over the whole 22h post-exercise window, for which the scientists have data (cf. figure 2, right), was -12% and -17% lower in the strength training group than in the control and endurance group, respectively.  

Without the AMPK elevation of an intermittent fast (or calorie reduction), it is thus unlikely that strength training alone is going to trigger significant AMPK responses.

Interestingly, the scientists state that the protein expression "of any of the reported signaling proteins" was "not altered" by the 10 weeks of pre-training, which would indicate that, contrary to years of competitive endurance exercise (cf. cyclists in illustration 1 in previous installment), 10 weeks with three weekly sessions of combined steady-state and interval exercises on stationary bikes do not blunt AMPK phosphorylation in response to 120 min of bicycle exercise at 60% of the individual VO2 max.

The induction of mTOR phosphorylation is and will remain the real strength of strength training

Likewise, the protein synthetic response (as evidenced by mTOR and p70S6K expression) did not change in response to a 10-week pre-conditioning phase comprising 30 leg workouts (3 exercises; 3-5 sets; 10 reps in the first 15 sessions, 4-6 reps in the last 15 sessions). Interestingly, and contrary to the often heard assertion that mTOR phosphorylation would be a strength training exclusive, figure 3 shows that there is still a minor, yet over the course of the post-exercise period, non-negligible increase in mTOR phosphorylation in the endurance trained subjects, whose 45min cycling session effectively blunted the mTOR dephosphorylisation the control group, who, just like all of the previously (before the preconditioning) 22 untrained healthy male subjects (79.1 kg; 182 cm; 23.3 years), fasted for the first 5h "post exercise" (their exercise consisted of sitting on the couch, doing nothing ;-).
Figure 3: mTOR phosphorylation (0, 2.5, 5 and 22h post) and approximate area under the respective curces (small graph) during post-exercise recovery from single-bout exercise, conducted with an exercise mode to which the exercise subjects were accustomed through 10 weeks of prior training (data calculated based on Vissing. 2011)
Even without looking at the data in figure 3 it should be obvious that the meager increase in mTOR phosphorylation in the endurance group cannot compete with what we see in the strength trained subjects, whose p-mTOR ( = phosphorylated mTOR) levels skyrocket in the post exercise phase, peaking at +218% (control: 56%; endurance: 130%) not immediately or maybe 1h post exercise but 5h after. Thus, the purported "anabolic window" of 1-2h after a workout turns out to be a barn door, in the real world - a barn door which is wide open right in the middle of your intermittent fasting feeding window!

Strength training = opening the "anabolic barn door"

Yet, while we do now know how to unlock the barn door, we still do not know if there ain't a way to push it open even further / faster, and how to keep it wide open for as long as possible. In this context, a study by Burd et al. from Steward Phillips group at the Department of Kinesiology of  McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario (Burd. 2011) could provide further clues into the "optimal" way(s) to push the "anabolic barn door" open, as wide as possible.
After all that has been said about the over-expression of mTOR in our current society in the previous installments, it should be said that the problem does not lie with mTOR itself, as it is not the latter which inhibits AMPK, but the energy abundance that triggers the mTOR response in our western obesity scenario. This chronic nutritionally induced suppression of AMPK is something we need to distinguish from both the training-induced increase in mTOR phosphorylation and the temporary and strategically used dietary stimuli that are so characteristic of intermittent fasting.
Figure 4: If we disregard the nutritional component, the training induced "anabolic barn door" does not only coincide with the feeding window, it would also keep you nicely "anabolic" in the course of the fasting period.
In figure 4, I have extrapolated the missing two hours to complete a 24 hour intermittent fasting period, in the course of which you would do your training session early in the morning, head towards the gym at 8:00am, change your clothes, warm up, training for about an hour and break the fast at 10:00am. Thereafter, you would have a pretty long feeding window of about 6 hours, to then begin another fast... in that, your meal pattern would differ profoundly from the one of the study subjects, because the latter had to fast for the first 5 hours post exercise, so that the mTOR response was not augmented and the study results distorted by meal ingestion (afterwards they were allowed to eat whatever they wanted until 22:00pm and had to report back for the 8:30am blood draw (mTOR still +89% elevated) on the next morning. Due to these differences it is difficult to predict how your overall (i.e. exercise + food induced) mTOR response would look like on the above regimen.

Will the "anabolic barn door" stay open in the course of the fast and thusly prevent muscle breakdown?

This is where the data from the Burd study comes into play (Burd. 2011). In their study, Bird et al. had measured the fractional protein synthesis rate in response to feeding (15g of whey protein) and feeding and exercise (unilateral leg raises) at different intensities, i.e. 90% 1RM to failure, 30% 1RM with matched work-load and 30% 1RM to failure. What they found was that
regardless of condition, rates of mixed muscle protein and sarcoplasmic protein synthesis were similarly stimulated at FED and EX-FED (Burd. 2011)
- an observation, the scientist attribute to the fact that the sarcoplasmic constituents of the muscle may be more susceptible to hydration flux, so that the results may not adequately represent the "actual" protein synthetic response.Thusly, the researchers rely in their interpretation of the data mainly on the myofibrillar protein synthesis rate (cf. figure 5).
Figure 5: Changes (% per hour) in absolute myofibrillar protein synthesis (adapted from Burd. 2011)
As you would expect and actually can see in figure 5, the latter did respond to the additional exercise stimulus. Pumping away at 30% of your 1RM max without going to failure, is yet not enough to augment the statistically hardly significant increase in fractional protein synthesis that was triggered by protein ingestion, alone. It takes some effort, or, in other words, heavy weights and training to failure to trigger elevations in AKT phosphorylation (90% 1RM to failure) or mTOR phosphorylation (30% 1RM to failure) to get that done (note: neither of the two, i.e. protein kinase B = AKT or mTOR was significantly elevated by feeding, alone).
[...] protein ingestion stimulated rates of myofibrillar protein synthesis above fasting rates by 0.016 ± 0.002%/h and the response was enhanced 24 h after resistance exercise, but only in the 90FAIL and 30FAIL conditions, by 0.038 ± 0.012 and 0.041 ± 0.010, respectively. Phosphorylation of protein kinase B on Ser473 was greater than FED at EX-FED only in 90FAIL, whereas phosphorylation of mammalian target of rapamycin on Ser2448 was significantly increased at EX-FED above FED only in the 30FAIL condition.(Burd. 2011)
Moreover, and this may be of even greater importance in the context of exercising on an intermittent fast, muscle protein synthesis stayed elevated way beyond what is usually considered the <4h "anabolic window".
Our results suggest that resistance exercise performed until failure confers a sensitizing effect on human skeletal muscle for at least 24 h that is specific to the myofibrillar protein fraction. (Burd. 2011)
While this is obviously important for everyone who wants to accrue as much muscle muss as possible, any elevations in protein synthesis will also help a dieter to keep is hardly earned muscle, because in essence our muscles are continuously build up and broken down  - proteolysis, i.e. the breakdown of muscle tissue, and protein synthesis are going hand in hand and it is the ratio of one to the other, which decides whether we are in an "anabolic" (synthesis > breakdown) or catabolic (breakdown > synthesis) state. Consequently, any elevation in protein synthesis will ameliorate muscle loss - no matter how proteolytic a dieter may become during the fasting phase.

It takes >24h for the barn door to close itself - use this time to get rid of fat, not muscle

Fine, we unlocked the "anabolic barn door", it stays open for "at least 24h"... blah blah... wtf! how does all that translate from the metaphorical into the real world of intermittent fasting? Well, the answer is pretty simple, as hundreds of trainees have been practicing exactly that with extreme success over the past couple of months:
  1. fast until min. 1h before your training
  2. spike your protein synthesis with a protein shake (~20g of whey), EAAs (~10g) or BCAAs (~8g)
  3. train semi-fasted and heavy
  4. feast within a 5-8h window
  5. repeat the same litany again
Now, the sheer size of the barn door, ahm... sorry, the long-lasting anabolic and thusly anti-catabolic effect of intense strength training should allow you to either skip or replace "3. train semi-fasted and heavy" with "3. passive or active recovery" (in that case you also do not want to ingest the protein shake / EAA / BCAA) or even some "3. semi-fasted cardio" (see notes in red box) if you feel that your conditioning or weight loss will benefit from that, every other day without running the risk of either gaining too much fat weight.
Image 2: Your "anabolic barn" is huge enough to accommodate one or two steady state, low intensity or high intensity "cardio" sessions per week.
If you want to incorporate "cardio" training into your routine, the pre-conditioning protocol from the Vissing study could actually be a very good, since diversified, regimen. In that, you would cycle between doing "standard" steady state conditioning work, longer medium-intensity interval training and short, but intense HIIT sessions. The result would be a very complete "cardio" protocol, of which the Vissing study showed that it will help you ramp up your AMPK levels pretty profoundly, even if you are only sitting on one of those cycle ergometers pedaling away jovially at 60% of your VO2 max. And in case you are now concerned about possibly shutting the barn door - look at figure 3 again, the mTOR response to this kind of exercise may not be earth-shattering, but a plus of 25% @5h post exercise is better than what you would get if you just lay around lazily, as the control group in the Vessing study did.
With these insights into why that of which you already knew that it works actually works, I conclude this week's installment of the Intermittent Thoughts and hope that I did not bore you so much that you do not come back next Sunday for another installment of this series ;-)


  1. Dr. Andro,

    Would eggs be digested fast enough to spike protein synthesis in less than an hour?

  2. if you did not train, you might notice something from raw eggs or egg protein isolate. But I do really doubt that a hard boiled egg delivers its nutrients fast enough to "spike" anything. It will sustain what you triggered by exercise, but it probably won't have effects you could compare to a whey isolate (which is also profoundly insulinogenic, i.e. it will also spike insulin levels temporarily)

  3. Dr tell me a thing please. If I may ask, I understand offcourse that in the final patchway trigging mtor or akt will activate the same thing. But witch one would be better? Ive searched something in pubmed, it seens that akt suffers less influence of other factors always activating the final product (mtor).


    another question if I may, why does creatine activate ampk if it rises the ATP intracellulary, consequently less AMP and ADP will be there to active ampk.

    Thanks; again!

  4. Dr. Andro,

    This timing makes sense and is quite similar to what Martin prescribes for his Leangains clients. I just have some questions around what to do on 'off' days, since I usually am only able to make it to the gym 1-4 days a week. I'm sure many others are also in this unfortunate circumstance. With that said, my main question involves the 'needs' of the body.

    So on days where one doesn't train, what does the body 'need' to ward off muscle loss and other adverse effects on the metabolism. I've heard that about 150g of glucose is required to run the body without having to resort to gluconeogenesis, but beyond that I'm not sure what the body needs in regards to protein and fats on a day to day basis. If 150g of glucose is the primary need, assuming that glycogen in the liver is not fully stocked, would it make sense to just focus on getting that need met and under-eat otherwise? Or does the body needs tons of protein (2-3g per kg of body weight everyday) even if that person isn't training everyday?

    So essentially, my thinking is boiling down to this:
    -on days where one trains, using for example Martin's reverse-pyramid outline (heavy weights to failure), one should have a pre-workout whey+BCAA shake and then eat a lot post-workout. Though if you don't plan on training again for a couple of days, should that post-workout phase be extended to 24 hours or is it better to just keep it to the original 5-8 hours? Also, it would seem to make sense to eat a lot of protein (2-3g per kg of bodyweight) within this period, however long it may be.
    -on days where one doesn't train, eat very light or just fast for most of the day. only making sure to get about 150g of glucose to ward off gluconeogenesis.

    My lack of understanding of all the intricacies on this topic is obvious, but hopefully this outline makes sense. On the whole, I think it breaks down to: Feed the body after training, let it feed on it's own fat when not training.

    Sorry for the long comment, but if you have any thoughts I'd greatly appreciate it.

    Thank you, Mark.

  5. @Bernardo: our current understanding says that AKT is further up in the signaling cascade; IGF-1 for example is believed to increase AKT and trigger mTOR (cf., but if you asked me, we know max. 50% of the "story"... the differential mTOR and AKT response in the Burd study would suggest that despite being interrelated both AKT and mTOR appear to have partly independent effects on protein synthesis, but as I said, I expect further insights into this in the future...

    wrt to creatine, just take a look at the title of the following study > "Creatine supplementation increases glucose oxidation and AMPK phosphorylation..." if you increase glucose utilization you may (for a short time) supply the muscle with more ATP per time unit but you will run out faster, in the end, so that AMPK will be elevated

    @Mark: I would not overcomplicate things. You keep the basic IF regime with a max 8h feeding window every day (no matter whether you train or not) you do not even need 150g of carbs; you can well go without any carbs, BUT if you want to grow I suggest you have some, although you can ward off catabolism on non-exercise days with fat, as well (if not better). Gluconeogenesis does not necessarily mean "muscle loss".
    Protein-wise I would aim for 1.5-2g/kg. Carbwise I would stay below 150g (unless you do tons of endurance exercise OR you want to gain mass). I would obviously skip the preworkout supplementation on non-workout days and post-workout fast carbs + protein shake (which is something I would have on workout days when muscle gain is the aim)... otherwise I would keep the diet about the same on workout and non-workout days, but I will try to set up a very concrete program in the last installments of this series.

    you may also want to look at Duong's website (see Aesthetic muscle in the nav at the right) to see how he did it / I think his success speaks for itself

  6. Thank you very much Dr. Andro. A simple way of looking at it. I always make things too complicated. I'm looking forward to the last installments.

    Thanks again, Mark.

  7. Thanks a lot Doc! I think that soon we will have some good answers about anabolism pathway. The future for the bodybuilding (by the way: Im really exited about the cobalt article youva made)
    Some time ago I believed we would do it by the Selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMs), but until now the results are kind frustating...

  8. @Mark: You are welcome. Making readers happy, or rather getting information out that people can actually build on is all the SuppVersity is about ;-)

    @Bernardo: If you look at the results from Steward Phillips lab at McMasters you will notice that the role of androgens, growth hormone etc. is largely overestimated. I quote from

    "Our recent work disputes this assumption. Instead, our data indicate that exercise-induced hormonal elevations do not enhance intracellular markers of anabolic signaling or the acute postexercise elevation of myofibrillar protein synthesis. Furthermore, data from our training study demonstrate that exercise-induced increases in GH and testosterone availability are not necessary for and do not enhance strength and hypertrophy adaptations. Instead, our data lead us to conclude that local mechanisms that are intrinsic to the skeletal muscle tissue performing the resistive contractions (ie, weightlifting) are predominant in stimulating anabolism."

  9. Great installment to your series Dr. Andro. The protocol you suggest has worked very well for me as you know :)

  10. Great Doc., very interesting and stimulating article.

    I just dont' get one thing:

    you say to substitute "3. train semi-fasted and heavy" with "3. passive or active recovery" or "3. semi-fasted cardio", but it seems strange to me that you suggest to have somne EAAs/BCAAs durning the fast and then do nothing: I know for sure that you do not advice this, there's no sense in it

    Can you explain me better what did you intend in that passage??

  11. @Duong: Thanks for the kind words. Always good to hear that even the "pros" ;-) can learn from reading stuff here at the SuppVersity *lol*

    @Bomb Jack: you are right... that is a mistake of mine. I meant to skimp on 2 as well if you do "nothing" ... will correct that, thanks for the heads up

  12. You're welcome ;-)

    Do you still suggest to have pre- BCAA before HIIT (srints/interval) cardio?


  13. BCAA / EAA yes, complete protein, I'd say no - that will only produce gastro-intestinal distress if taken before a REAL HIIT workout

  14. quoting Dr. Andro--> or even some "3. semi-fasted cardio"

    check out this odd one that I came across:
    Carbohydrate Mouth Rinse Effects on Exercise Capacity in Pre- and Postprandial States

    Results. Mouth rinsing with maltodextrin improved time-to-exhaustion [on a cycle ergometer] in pre- and postprandial states.

    That seems even stranger than the way that artificial sweeteners raise insulin levels.

  15. this is kind of funny. I think I will finally have to address this study, although I initially dismissed it, because you are the second person within ~7day who brought this up (another one of the avid readers sent me a PM on facebook regarding this study)

    I had read it about 2 months ago, but dismissed it, because simply because I am missing the most significant information i.e. how much of the carbs from the rinse did actually get absorbed into the system? I heavily doubt that when you rinse your mouth with sugar water non of the carbs will get absorbed... that being said, this is difficult to measure while you are cycling, because obviously the blood glucose level would not rise significantly, since those little glucose spikes would either be burned or (and that would explain the performance increase + decrease in rate of perceived exertion) get directed to the brain immediately...
    I would like to see a trial comparing sugar water vs. water with artificial sweetener in it... if it really was the "rinse" the latter should be similarly effective.

  16. I just started checking out the references in the study and came about this one >

    which shows that it is not the taste...

    also interesting: no enhancement if post-prandial (further evidence for my hypothesis that the CHO get absorbed) >

    according to this one it must not even be the glucose, but just the signal that there is glucose >
    ^ although from my understanding "real" absorption is more likely, because otherwise the aforementioned study should not have found a difference in the postprandial state // well, maybe those "carb receptors" are not active then

    particularly wicked: Rinsing is better than drinking carbs >

    this study also clearly shows that it is probably a psychological factor related to "I can endure, because carbs are coming" >

    "The mechanism responsible for the improvement in high-intensity exercise performance with exogenous carbohydrate appears to involve an increase in central drive or motivation rather than having any metabolic cause. The nature and role of putative CHO receptors in the mouth warrants further investigation."

    maybe I'll include this idea in my IF training/supplementation protocol. It certainly could not harm... on the other hand it is pretty gross if you do "carb rinse" in the gym *lol*

  17. Am I correct in thinking that the increase in mTOR or opening of the anabolic barn door following a resistance based workout, is the reason you may want to widen your feeding window, if your main aim is to build muscle rather than loose fat?

    Meaning you want to eat and process as much of your food as possible during the window?

    1. That is correct thinking Rich. Although this doesn't mean to stuff yourself 24/7.

  18. Cheers Alex, thanks for your time and effort on here - really appreciated. And yes agreed, but I will continue to add in a breakfast on my off days and a shake + bananas after my morning work out.

    What do you think I should be considering when selecting a breakfast on my off day? I tend to go low carb on off days but I don’t feel religious about it after reading suppversity.

    I've been doing Quark with some frozen berries and half a scoop of whey isolate, mixed with a little full fat milk recently (thanks for that one Dr Andro - think it's the best thing I've come across from reading this blog, even if it was meant for late at night)! In fact I often have it before bed too - how much Quark is too much Quark!?.

    I figured the slow acting protein from the Quark would be good at breakfast if I'm not eating for another three-four hours?

    1. Really any protein source will last you for 3-4 hours (even whey if you ingest 40g of it), and given that you should aim for 30-40g of quality protein at each meal anyway, the source shouldn't matter so much.

      As for recovery days, I typically have fat + protein. On recovery days I like to backload most but not all my carbohydrates since I train in the mornings fasted it also helps pump my glycogen stores to be prepared for the next morning. Lunch is usually a transition meal where I have some fats with some more fibrous starches (sweet potatoes, apple, berries, etc), and dinner would be majority of carbs of whatever I decide to eat (basmati rice, potatoes, squash, sweet potato, etc). Protein is constant although usually ends up being a little higher at dinner since I have a longer fast while I sleep.

      As for actual food choices, my breakfast can be composed of any of the following (changes daily): eggs, steak, avocado, coconut, fish, chicken, any type of meat, macadamia nuts, etc.

    2. as for the quark it would certainly be a better choice than whey. The latter may in fact have your blood sugar drop - and I am not aware if you ever downed 500g of quark Alex, but if you do, you will be asking yourself whether you will ever want to eat again ;)

      Alex is yet right, unless you resort to fast digesting powders you can basically choose any protein you want for breakfast. If you are into having a sweet breakfast quark is yet probably the best option... also: try adding water and 1 heaped teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate + some stevia, stirr well, sit by and watch (I suggest you use a cup that leaves enough room for the "growth" you are about to witness ;) Add some nuts and fruit on top of the "foamed up sweet quark" and you have a full meal.

  19. Cheers guys

    I've also been backloading the carbs on recovery days, I find it's quite practical as I can make extra and use it in my lunch the next day (workout) which I take to work with me.

    Foamed quark sounds good, how much quark with your heaped teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate? 250g sound OK? That is one pack and should hit my 30g of protein on the button ;). Will try this tomorrow if I can get some bicarb on the way home.

  20. this series are awesome! - I work out the whole body - deadlift, rows, dumbbell press, chins, military press - 2-3 days a week (two days recovery between workout) - do you then suggest that I after my workout eat for 8-10 hours (little longer than what's mentioned above) and then fast for 14-16 hours? for muscle gain - fat loss=)

    1. Don't over think it. I train with a similar full body workout. I'm doing Bill Starr's 5x5 mon,wed,fri. Tues is intervals, wed is hills, and sat is easy stead state cardio.

      I use a 8 hr window +- some times a half hour either way due to life. I've been loosing weight and preserving my muscle while still increasing my strength. The only thing I've noticed suffer a bit is my cardio and only slightly.

      Just take some BCAA's 30 min prior and have a good sized healthy meal after.

      You can follow my blog if you like to see how its going. I updated it once or twice a week.

    2. Sorry thursday is hills! Weights and hill runs on wed would be alot. is my blog