Day 266 (F, 110923) — Intermittent Fasting; A New Pic; UPs Workout Day 6

A Broken Fast.  I am still looking for some solid info about how many calories one must ingest to “break” a fast.

I know many consider anything verboten.  But the main drive of my question is that I think I read somewhere ( one time that a small amount of cream in coffee in the morning is acceptable and would not shift the body into a “fed” state.

I’m still looking for a reference and would appreciate a link if somebody finds one.

I found the reference I was looking for in Martin’s Questions & Answers from a few years ago: The fasted state is not an on/off switch.

I often encounter questions that goes a little something like this

  • “…can I use milk/cream in my coffee during the fast?”
  • “…I accidentally drank a mouthful of regular Pepsi during the fast, is this considered a fast breaker?”

A: The fasted state is not an on/off switch that immediately gets turned off once you have a tiny amount of calories, like a lot of people seem to believe. The research is not clear on exactly what it is with fasting that causes the positive effects seen in the clinical trials, but some of the hypotheses revolve around

  1. letting insulin levels drop below a certain threshold, rather than a semi-elevated state (which would be the case with a higher meal frequency approach)
  2. creating an acute energy deficit (which you enter during the fast)

So, it’s a question of a dose-response effect. Can you have some milk in your coffee? Sure, I wouldn’t worry about it and I have it myself. . . . I would put the limit at 50 kcal total used throughout the fast. That’s about 1 deciliter or 1/2 cup 2% milk.

….In conclusion, use common sense and understand that the fasted state and the positive effects that may result from it isn’t an on/off switch, or an ‘all-or-nothing’ kind of deal.

So the answer, according to one of my two main sources of information about IF, is that it’s ok to have a bit but keep it small and worth it.

Sunday, I will likely write about why I am going to stop with the sunflower seeds (in the morning, at least) anyway.

(Hint: it has to do with what I know about myself and my bad dieting habits….)


While We’re On the Topic.  A few days back, I posted a link to a article which criticized both low-carb diets and intermittent fasting.

Justin was inspired to offer a nice response after reading about it here on NJ4NY.

Since I mentioned above, here’s a link to one of Martin Berkhan’s best articles which just so happens to relate to this topic: Top Ten Fasting Myths Debunked.

  1. Myth: Eat frequently to “stoke the metabolic fire”.
  2. Myth: Eat smaller meals more often for hunger control.
  3. Myth: Eat small meals to keep blood sugar levels under control.
  4. Myth: Fasting tricks the body into “starvation mode”.
  5. Myth: Maintain a steady supply of amino acids by eating protein every 2-3 hours. The body can only absorb 30 grams of protein in one sitting.
  6. Myth: Fasting causes muscle loss.
  7. Myth: Skipping breakfast is bad and will make you fat.
  8. Myth: Fasting increases cortisol.
  9. Myth: Fasted training sucks. You’ll lose muscle and have no strength.
  10. Myth: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch a queen, dinner like a pauper.”

As usual, Martin presents his points with clinical precision and links to study after study to support them.

Check it out.


A New Picture.  I mentioned the other day that I would take a new picture to document how I looked (almost) before I started doing the UPs workouts. Here it is.

Before UPs 110921

Sorry it’s a bit out of focus.

I’ll take another one at the end of October.


Exercise. Today is Day 6 of my UPs workout plan.

Push-ups Sit-ups Squats Pull-ups
Set 1
Set 2
Set 3
Set 4
Set 5
A = assisted, Au = Australian, N = neg., NM = neg., max hang

This one is going to be really tough.  Doing 120 push-ups before I even attempt my max reps set is gonna suck.

I can already tell that this is going to take much longer than the previous workouts.


Plan for Week 38.

Day Fast? SCD? Run/Exer?
Sunday No Yes No
Monday Yes Yes Yes
Tuesday Yes Yes No
Wednesday Yes No1 Yes Yes
Thursday Yes No2 Yes No
Friday Yes Yes Yes
Saturday No No Yes
Red = a negative deviation | Green = a positive deviation | Blue = a note


1 I had a Mooyah burger. Yummy. =)
2 I had a Fuddruckers burger with a friend. Yummy. =)

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