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Intermittent Fasting and Running


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I was curious on my fellow rebels' opinions on this. 

 

I've read the great benefits of intermittent fasting for weight lifters (which I dabble in), but I've not really read anything from a runner's perspective.  I love to run, and soon will be taking on my first half-marathon and then training for a full marathon (my dream!) later next year.

 

Does anyone do intermittent fasting with running?  Generally I tend to down a banana and some sunflower seeds or a glass of iskiate before a run, and I know as my mileage goes up I'll need to eat during the run.  Do you just fit the run in your feasting window or what?

 

Thanks for the advice!

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I will not claim to speak for everyone but I can tell you what I've found works for me. I run in the mornings and I don't eat breakfast basically ever. This means my runs are almost always done during my fasting interval, I usually don't eat my first meal until afternoon. On runs over about 6 miles I'll usually take a gel along, and after a really long/hard run (races usually but also while I was training for my marathon) I'll throw in breakfast of an appropriate size to the effort. If I didn't do enough work to feel like I need at least a decent sized breakfast I don't eat one. That's my experience on the subject, I'd be interested to see if others have any input on it.

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As I lace up to start getting into running again, I was wondering the same thing. I'm only doing "long" runs of 3 miles at the moment. I do IF pretty much 95% of the time, so I have no plans on eating before runs. But I'm going to try adding some butter to my coffee and see if that helps significantly with energy.

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"What we face may look insurmountable. But I learned something from all those years of training and competing. I learned something from all those sets and reps when I didn't think I could lift another ounce of weight. What I learned is that we are always stronger than we know." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

Toby: It's going to be hard.
Josh: Then we'll do what's hard.
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Am an IF'er. Do alternate day fastst when dropping weight and regular 16 to 20 hour fasts when I'm maintaining or bulking outright. I enjoy large portions of food followed by the drowse-period afterwards, etc.

Here's the thing... Assuming that you're not an olympic athlete and are running at a pace that's at least twice as fast as your walk, then running in a fasted state is not going to cut it. I KNOW this, because I've done 12 hour rides and 4 hour runs in fasted state. You will hit a brick wall somewhere during your run cause you're going to run out of liver-sugars. That's gonna feel shitty, and if you pull through you'll get an adrenaline response and feel fine again... Never the less, that's your body going crisis mode. 

If your running or cycling time exceeds 1.5-2 hours at the average pace... consider taking some raisins or dates along to snack on every hour... you'll still be expending WAY more sugars than your taking, but you won't run out of sugars as quickly. 

Here's the thing tho... from an insulin point of view (which the point of view most people use when considering fasting) your not going to 'break the fast' by eating a few raisins while running. The sugar hits the blood and gets used... the muscles of your legs etc will soak those badboys up. 

Dont get anal about your fast when it comes to exercise. If you're running for extended periods of time, sugar is going to be taken from the liver... that's the sugar that usually supplies the brain in fasted state, without it you  need a ketogenic adaptation (from eating predominantly fats, etc) to not get headaches and feel like shit.






 


 

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Here's the thing tho... from an insulin point of view (which the point of view most people use when considering fasting) your not going to 'break the fast' by eating a few raisins while running. The sugar hits the blood and gets used... the muscles of your legs etc will soak those badboys up. 

Dont get anal about your fast when it comes to exercise. If you're running for extended periods of time, sugar is going to be taken from the liver... that's the sugar that usually supplies the brain in fasted state, without it you  need a ketogenic adaptation (from eating predominantly fats, etc) to not get headaches and feel like shit.

 

 

Agreed 100%. Although the diagonal argument (not really a counter argument) might involve trying to shift your body to be more fat-adapted ala Ben Greenfield's recommendations. I was listening to his post IronMan roundup and his nutrition is very interesting. Of course the exercise I'm doing and the exercise he does aren't even in the same league. But interesting nonetheless.

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"What we face may look insurmountable. But I learned something from all those years of training and competing. I learned something from all those sets and reps when I didn't think I could lift another ounce of weight. What I learned is that we are always stronger than we know." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

Toby: It's going to be hard.
Josh: Then we'll do what's hard.
- The West Wing

"A good lawyer sees trouble coming from around the corner."
-Professor Tom Ross

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 Although the diagonal argument (not really a counter argument) might involve trying to shift your body to be more fat-adapted ala Ben Greenfield's recommendations.

 

Well, as i understand it thusfar, I see three bodily functions/adaptations that make the fasts easier.

1. Keto-adaptation (less carb, more fat... even by brain although 25% of the brain will still need glucose to function proper, I'm told.)

2. Slower liver glycogen release. Part of the first adaptation. 

3. Tapping into fasting adrenals.

I consider the last one the holy grail, as it isn't so much an adaptation as a tendency or an already inherent ability to keep your body sympathetic and release sugars when you're low on them. Anytime I've had trouble fasting, or been pestered by hungers, so far... it's been because I allowed my body to go parasympathetic. Now, longer fasts usually impact my body temperature either way (which, to me, is a sign of lower metabolism), but when I relax, the effect is much more prominent. I get depressed and listless... When I get my body to stay or become active, i.e. sympathetic, I'll still be a little cold, but my mind is soaring. This used to come in waves. Hunger would set in and I would ignore that hunger long enough and bam, I'd get a jolt of energy. Then I decided 'what the hell, why not force the issue before I get hungry', which I managed to do by doing a 0 to 60 type of exercise in the phosphocreatine range of energy expenditure (standing in place and sprinting for 8 to 10 seconds. Speed was the only concern).

As long as I can get my body to keep from going parasym, I'm golden. Wouldn't recomend it more than twice a week tho.

Why this pertains to running, I'm not sure... but I really feel it does. There's a way to run at the exact same pace while letting your nervous system kick back and do a minimal effort (torturous runs with bodily incentives to stop as quickly as possible. Dilates time, etc). Some people slump with every step one day, then have a spring in said step the next...

So here's my advice if you do decide to run long distance in fasted state: Do one demanding exercise within the phosphocreatine range (like 5 burpees as quick as you can, without hurting yourself) before the run, then do the normal slow increase of speed when running you normally would (As to not burn out).

Sounds a little counter intuitive... but the body has no problem being jolted in the PC range, so it won't add to burning you out.

cheers

 

 

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My GOD!!! That sounds absolutely disgusting!!!

Logically, it should be OK, since butter is just milk, but ... No. I can't get my head around that one. Sorry

Good luck, though, and report back

Never tried the Bulletproof Coffee huh? I'm not a die hard but it's a nice way to sneak in some extra fat when struggling to do so. The taste took me one or two times to adjust to, now I really like it. But I only put about one tbsp of grass fed organic unsalted butter in. Some BP Coffee devotees put in like double or triple that.

I did not notice an energy difference in my 3 miler. But I didn't think I would. I'm guessing that will be more evident on longer runs.

Also, Wawa FTW.

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"What we face may look insurmountable. But I learned something from all those years of training and competing. I learned something from all those sets and reps when I didn't think I could lift another ounce of weight. What I learned is that we are always stronger than we know." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

Toby: It's going to be hard.
Josh: Then we'll do what's hard.
- The West Wing

"A good lawyer sees trouble coming from around the corner."
-Professor Tom Ross

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Never tried the Bulletproof Coffee huh? I'm not a die hard but it's a nice way to sneak in some extra fat when struggling to do so. The taste took me one or two times to adjust to, now I really like it. But I only put about one tbsp of grass fed organic unsalted butter in. Some BP Coffee devotees put in like double or triple that.

I did not notice an energy difference in my 3 miler. But I didn't think I would. I'm guessing that will be more evident on longer runs.

Also, Wawa FTW.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Have you tried coconut oil (solid) instead? Tastes nice to me. just a little spoon will do.. and cinnamon!

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