With summer in full swing, we are all constantly bombarded with ‘quick fixes’ for our bodies that will give us a ‘great summer body in 30 minutes a day’. The problem with quickly fixing your body is, it usually quickly goes back to how it was before your little ‘quick fix’.

 

If you want long lasting results you need to do it properly and unless you are fully committed to your goal there really is no other alternative other than having a clean dieting and training 3-4 times a week. Or is there? There is one method that is used by many people all over the world and some of the results are amazing. Terry Crews is a great example of a perfectly crafted body, his secret? Intermittent Fasting. This can be done on a 5-2 weekly basis or every day/alternate days if you wish, but I think you should trial it at first and see how you respond. The isn’t so much of a diet as it is specific timings of your meals, not to say you can eat what you wish as it will definitely work better the cleaner you eat. However it is quite simple and the reason it works so well is because of how your body reacts to fasting but before we go into too much detail let’s look at what exactly Intermittent Fasting is.

 

Intermittent fasting is a form of fasting which allows you to switch between non-fasting and fasting. Most intermittent fasts also allow for drinking, water, coffee and so on. It’s so good for the body in that it improves your blood pressure, sensitivity to insulin and lowers inflammation. It also helps mentally, anyone knows that going without food for such a prolonged period of time is very difficult, are you really going to eat unhealthy after going through such a difficult task? Mentally that puts you in good stead for losing unwanted fats, but what about the muscle bit? This is where it gets interesting, IF significantly increases your Growth Hormone secretion, allowing your body to maintain muscle mass while you’re fasting.

The release of Growth Hormone and increased fat oxidation is the perfect recipe for sculpting that lean look we all want, the best bit is, there is no bulk and cut phase, you can maintain this all year round. Losing fat will make your muscles look more defined regardless of how much you train. Notice how I say lose fat and not weight, looking at your scale to judge how well your plan is going is not going to get you very far, you may weigh the same or slightly more depending on what body fat percentage you start on and whether or not you’re weight training (highly recommend you do as it will speed the whole process up). As with everything, you need to find what works for you and something you can stick to. One thing to note, stay below 50-100 calories during your fasting hours to stay in a fasted state, research is weak on what number exactly but you don’t want that Growth Hormone to stop!

 

As mentioned before there are different methods to IF that you can use, daily, 5/2 weekly or alternate days. Fasted state for IF can last anywhere from 16 to 24 hours, but you must do what fits in with your schedule. Once your body gets used to it and you do it often you will be shocked at how much extra time you have, we spend so much time making food, procrastinating about food and gorging on it. From personal experience one of the best things that came from IF was patience and delayed gratification. Being a huge foodie myself I found it difficult at first but you get used to it after a while, after which you can reap the benefits once you get past the stage where your body is getting used to it.

 

There are also other benefits to Intermittent Fasting other than the ones mentioned earlier, there are anti aging benefits, combats bad bacteria and cellular repair. All those cancerous and neurological diseases? Intermittent Fasting helps to combat the molecules that have ties to neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s among others.

“Fasting is the first principle of medicine; fast and see the strength of the spirit reveal itself.”

Rumi

Aside from Terry Crews who has used IF to create an awesome and extremely healthy body, the other celebrities who use IF are Miranda Kerr, Liv Tyler, Ben Affleck, Beyonce and Hugh Jackman. I think we can agree that they have great bodies and remember we are trying to be as healthy as possible. So this includes how our bodies look on the inside as well as the outside and another great benefit of IF is, no detox chemicals are needed, as it allows for the body to do it all for you. There are many different products on the market that help you detox and get a great summer body etc but these are all manufactured products with harmful ingredients that may be doing more bad than good in the long run. Regardless of how our bodies look, how you feel is just as important and once the stage of the hanger pangs has passed, IF may give you that increased energy you seek and you may never look back!

There are many different fad diets out there but you must beware of quick fixes, they will usually leave you worse off. The best way to do something with your body is in a slow and controlled manor, as we all know, slow and steady wins the race! The goal here is to lose body fat and keep it off, Intermittent Fasting has made a great case for achieving this amongst a whole host of other great benefits. It was prescribed by doctors to treat many different things as early as the 1900’s, so why have we then moved away from this and onto pharmaceuticals? Money. That however is a conversation for a different day.

 

Whatever your health and fitness goals are, Intermittent Fasting can be a great part of your firepower. Let us know how you get on! GSY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources

The effects of Ramadan intermittent fasting on athletic performance – Journal of Sports Sciences

http://easacademy.org/trainer-resources/article/intermittent-fasting

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17291990/

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S193152441400200X

The effect of protein timing on muscle strength and hypertrophy: a meta-analysis – Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2405717

https://secure.jbs.elsevierhealth.com/action/getSharedSiteSession?redirect=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.translationalres.com%2Fretrieve%2Fpii%2FS193152441400200X&rc=0&code=trsl-site

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC329619/