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marcid21

question

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a friend of mine has been training pretty hardcore....

She recently told me your fat/calorie intake should fluctuate drastically day to day, in order to give your metabolism a kick in the ass....

Is this true? And if it is, does it matter what your intake is on your "off" days?

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others will have links to this, but i'll just say that while many people do have "off" days, they're usually once every week or every two weeks, depending on the person's initial body fat percentage. they're called "refeed" days, and keep the body from stalling weight loss (after a while of reduced calorie intake, the body will eventually think it's starving and start conserving fat).

while doing a mini yo-yo diet thing and reducing your calories every other day may enable you to lose weight eventually, i wouldn't think it would be as efficient, healthy, or easy to maintain as would a gradual reduction in calories with occasional refeeds... especially considering that a larger stomach will get and stay hungrier than one not expanded from many and large portions!

where's rackham? i'm sure he has a more thorough explanation.

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Right. Refeeding has *partly* to do with a chemical called leptin, which I'm not even remotely qualified to talk about. If you really want to torture yourself with the details, here's a Google link -- pay special attention to anything written by Lyle McDonald as he's an expert on the topic:

http://groups.google.com/groups?q=leptin+refeed+group:misc.fitness.weights&hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&group=misc.fitness.weights&selm=3D38BA0C.B899B8E6%40onr.com&rnum=1

The idea is to refeed occasionally to keep the metabolism doing what you want it to. It's not really a "kick in the ass" -- more like a nasty trick to keep it from slowing down. Most people refeed on weekends, since that's when it makes the most sense anyway. I can eat complete crap all weekend and still wake up Monday morning and weigh less than I did Friday morning! But during the week, I'm *very* strict with my calories...

Refeeding also has great psychological benefits, especially when you're looking at a long road to reaching your target weight. It's much easier to keep away from your favorite foods 6 days a week for 6 months, than for 6 months straight. I think that's the primary reason people should consider refeeding.

It's possible to do shorter cycles, but for most people I really don't think it's worth the trouble of trying to keep track of it.

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I disagree. fluctuating your caloric intake drastically from day to day will help you maintain a good conditioning or help you lose weight.

Typically your lower your caloric intake for a period of time (lets say 2 weeks for example). Then you will use a refeed (large increase in calorie intake) day at the end. When you body is in caloric deficit for an extended period of time your metabolism will slowly diminish. That refeed will kick your metabolism back into gear, at which point you can then go back to caloric deficit to lose more fat.

Bouncing it back and forth from one day to the next is not the correct way to go about doing it.

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Originally posted by ou812

I disagree. fluctuating your caloric intake drastically from day to day will help you maintain a good conditioning or help you lose weight.

Typically your lower your caloric intake for a period of time (lets say 2 weeks for example). Then you will use a refeed (large increase in calorie intake) day at the end. When you body is in caloric deficit for an extended period of time your metabolism will slowly diminish. That refeed will kick your metabolism back into gear, at which point you can then go back to caloric deficit to lose more fat.

Bouncing it back and forth from one day to the next is not the correct way to go about doing it.

Are you saying that it will help, or that it won't? In the beginning there, it sounds like you're saying that it will, but the rest sounds pretty much like what I said.

It *is* possible to refeed on smaller schedules -- it's just not extremely practical. Every week or so is much more reasonable.

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Originally posted by rackham

Are you saying that it will help, or that it won't? In the beginning there, it sounds like you're saying that it will, but the rest sounds pretty much like what I said.

It *is* possible to refeed on smaller schedules -- it's just not extremely practical. Every week or so is much more reasonable.

I'm saying that a refeed will help, but not a refeed every other day.

Typically most bodybuilders that go on low carb diets to strip fat in a hurry go through about a 1 to 2 week period of low carb/calorie stint with a refeed on the last day.

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