5 reasons to work out during intermittent fasting
Got the question? Well, the answer is yes, and here are 5 reasons why you should get your body moving.
A phat way to trim fat
One of the main reasons to do IF (intermittent fasting) is to lose body fat. Now if you’re working out at the same time, logic may suggest that it should double your rate of fat loss, right? Well, not quite. Studies have been done on this and the results are mixed – some people lose more fat doing fasted cardio while for others, the impact is negligible. But there are various benefits to working out while fasting.
You snooze, you lose
You may or may not burn more fat exercising while fasting but if you don’t workout, you will lose muscle. Basically everything you do, eat and drink sends messages to the body. Fasting while not exercising at the same time tells your body that since you’re not using your muscle tissue, you don’t need them. The body then breaks down muscles to produce glucose, its preferred source of energy, that it will be low on when you’re fasting. #problemfixed
Burn, baby, burn
Wait, won’t the body simply burn fat when it runs out of glucose? It will eventually but it takes time to switch from sugar burning to fat burning. During the transition (it can take up to two weeks), your muscle strength and overall physical capacity may suffer – which is all the more reason to keep working out. Remember, what you don’t use, you lose. The good news is that over time, your body will become fat adapted i.e. more efficient in burning fat as its main fuel source.
Pull back, then let go
How does the body build muscle? One of the essential components is a gene called mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) which regulates the construction and rejuvenation of muscle tissue. For mTOR to do its job, you first need to suppress it. When you unleash it (by eating), the mTOR surges and that’s when it builds muscle. There are several ways to suppress mTOR: Fasting is one, exercising is another. When you exercise while fasting, you double down on the mTOR suppression!
Now that you understand the how, you need to know the when. Optimise the twin effects of fasting and exercising on the mTOR by getting your timing right. Workout at the end of your fasting window when your mTOR has been suppressed for the maximum length of time. Break your fast afterwards, which creates that spring or bounding effect that leads to muscle creation. Doing this ensures that your mTOR gets squashed down more, surges more when you break your fast, and builds muscles faster than usual. #gainz