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  1. #1
    Jennerator's Avatar
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    Calorie Cycling

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    Hey guys!
    I know IF is supposed to be very effective for this but I find it hard to go to class/study with fasted-brain fog.
    I'm wondering if I could "cycle" my caloric intake as an alternative?
    If I eat very little one day (couple of nuts for breakfast, small salad for lunch hardboiled egg for dinner say) and then eat a bit more than I normally would the next day and just alternate those sorts of days, would this help with fat loss in the same way IF does? Or do I have to be completely fasted to get the fat burning benefits?
    Just having a little food in my tummy makes a big difference I find. But maybe I need to stick it out with IF and deal with the coldness/fatigue/foggy brain I get until I'm used to it?
    Any feedback would be super helpful! thanks
    Last edited by Jennerator; 09-13-2012 at 01:04 PM.

  2. #2
    ChocoTaco369's Avatar
    ChocoTaco369 is offline Senior Member
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    Yes, caloric cycling is how you'll likely have the best luck losing the body fat, but it's a little more complicated than just cycling calories.

    Pick two days that you schedule your lift heavy things workouts and put them back to back. For argument's sake, say you'll put deadlifts, benchpresses, lat pulldowns, shoulder presses and bent over rows on Saturday and squats, leg presses, leg extensions, tricep pulldowns, bicep straight bar curls and crunches Sunday. The rest of the week, you do the easier stuff. HIIT on Monday, light weight depletion weight work on Tuesday, light weight depletion work on Wednesday, low level cardio on Thursday and off on Friday.

    Monday through Friday, eat at a caloric deficit of around 20-25%. If your maintenance is around 1,800 kcal, eat around 1,400 kcal. Keep carbs under 50g, no starch, eat 1g of protein per pound of body weight and whatever's left eat fat, preferably MCT-based fats like coconut and butter.

    Saturday and Sunday, eat 20-25% over maintenance. That means around 2,200 kcal. Those days, eat 1-1.5g/lb of body weight of protein, 200-250g of starchy carbohydrate (skip the fibrous veggies) and keep fats low, under 50g total.

    That sample plan will probably get you to where you want to be in 4-6 weeks. Just plug in your maintenance calorie level (body weight in pounds x 14 roughly or use an online calculator). Of course, before you embark on that diet, take a deload week. Don't do any kind of heavy training. Maybe some walking, pushups or crunches, but nothing that'll make you sore or tired. Eat at maintenance calories or a little more so you reset your metabolism.

    I'm in the middle of something similar now, except more extreme.

    P.S. I like the username. Witty.
    Last edited by ChocoTaco369; 09-23-2011 at 03:02 PM.
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  3. #3
    Jennerator's Avatar
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    Thanks, I read your other posts about carb refeeding and I may give it a shot.
    Although my diet is pretty clean and has been for the better part of 2 years (with occasional slips, usually around exams) it is definitely not perfect. This week for example I indulged in some ice cream and bread. Generally I eat something "bad" about once a week, be that a beer, popcorn or something sugary.
    I wonder then if I am not strict enough with my diet to have this plan work for me? Maybe I should buckle down and eat 100% primal for at least a month before I try this?
    My exercise routine right now is circuit training monday wednesday friday, I run up and down my 7 flights of stairs in my apartment then follow that up with squats, lunges, pushups, overhead presses, core work etc. then I run up the stairs and repeat about 3 times.
    I bike to school every day (only about 4 km but it's something)
    on tuesdays, thursdays and weekends I take it pretty easy, I do yoga on some days.
    I can't run right now, everytime I try my knee has been hurting for the past little while, this then interferes with my other workouts so I have not been doing any HIIT, although I could do it on my bike for sure. (and I am beginning to accept that I don't really like running and there are better ways to look good on the beach haha!)
    I've only been following this exercise routine for 3 weeks, before that I was still active but I didn't do weights very regularly, just lots of biking, running and power yoga without any sort of rigid structure to it. I generally just tried to be active more days than not.
    I'm 5'5 and 122 pounds. I'm decently lean but not where I want to be. I don't count calories but I plugged them in to fitday for the past few days and I eat around 1200-1400 a day.
    Basically I worry that my diet and exercise routines aren't perfect enough yet to try this and that it will somehow backfire? Should I try to take the standard PB further before I attempt this?
    Thanks for your help!

  4. #4
    Laconophile's Avatar
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    The beauty of depleting and then replenishing your glycogen stores a la carb cycling is that nearly all carbs go straight to your muscles on carb-up days. I don't recommend it, but sometimes I eat candy and drink beer(buddweiser is mostly rice,isn't it?) on carb-up days without too much ill effect. Ice cream is another matter, the fat in ice cream is likely to be stored as body fat, so ice cream is a no no.
    Ye shall know them by their fruits.

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