Intermittent Fasting for Maximum Muscle and Minimum Fat

intermittent fasting muscle gain

Fasting is the SH#%

In the last post I talked about 10 Awesome Benefits of Intermittent Fasting. My fasting article had a hugely positive response and from the looks of it many kinobody readers have adapted daily fasting into their routines with incredible results thus far. In this article I am going to share with you how I use a special approach to intermittent fasting and nutrition to maximize muscle and minimize fat. My approach is highly influenced by Martin Berkhan of Leangains with a few tweaks of my own to improve results.

Cool Reasons to Fast – credit from Martin Berkhan of Leangains 

Here’s a quick primer on the benefits of intermittent fasting for anyone interested in improving their physique and mental state:

• Greater insulin sensitivity, which allows your body to make better use of carbohydrates

• A wide variety of potential health benefits, ranging from cardiovascular health and life extension to neuroprotective mechanisms that may protect against brain diseases such as Alzheimers.

• Mental alertness, boost in metabolism and improved energy levels due to increased levels of norepinephrine.

• Higher levels of growth hormone during the fast, which shifts fuel metabolism to fat burning and spares muscle protein.

• Appetite suppression. Contrary to what people seem to believe, fasting will not make you ravenous. It has a hunger blunting effect, which is invaluable during cutting.

The Intermittent Fasting Protocol

I believe in fasting 16-18 hours per day and having a 6-8 hour feeding window. During the fasting period I consume only zero caloric beverages such as coffee, tea or water. No food or calories whatsoever are to be consumed during the fasting period. There is one exception however and that is 10g of BCAA or 30g of whey taken 10 mins before lifting if you are training fasted. Pre workout protein has several benefits including increased protein synthesis and elevated metabolism. During the 6-8 hour feeding window I will consume 3 meals spaced 3-4 hours apart.

Example:

Meal 1 – 2 pm

Meal 2 – 5:30 pm

Meal 3 – 9:00 pm

Basic Leangains Concepts 

Martin Berkhans system involves special nutrient requirements to maximize muscle gains and minimize fat. These include:

1. Maintaining high protein intake everyday (1-1.5g per pound of body-weight)

Protein should be kept relatively high every-single day to assist with muscle growth. In addition maintaining high protein intake on your ”low calorie days’ will keep you full and satisfied since protein is the most satiating nutrient.

2. Eating higher calories with high carbs and low fat on training days

By overfeeding on workout days we can maximize muscle growth by providing excess nutrients to the muscles when they are most responsive. This is best accomplished by boosting carb intake. Carbs will serve to replenish and restore glycogen levels and put your body into an anabolic mode ready to pack on muscle.

3. Eating lower calories with low carbs and moderate fat on rest days

By lowering calorie intake on rest days we can efficiently burn fat. Carbs should be reduced to 100-120 grams to maximize fat burning without putting your body into ketosis.

5. Getting 60-100% of calories in the meals following your workout either by having 1 pre workout meal of 20% total calories, having 2 pre workout meals of 20% total calories each or training fasted with 10g of BCAA or 30g of whey

By getting the bulk of your calorie intake in the meals following your workout you can promote muscle growth with fewer calories. If you are bulking this means little to no fat gain. If you are cutting this means no muscle loss. Best case scenario you will build muscle and lose fat.

Training Options 

Fasted Training – Best for people who train earlier in the day

For fasted training you will workout on an empty stomach 1-2 hours before your first meal of the day. It is important to supplement with 30g of whey or 10g of BCAA pre workout to increase protein synthesis and limit protein breakdown. If you train early in the morning several hours before your first meal I recommend having 30g of whey protein after your workout.

One Pre Workout Meal – Best for people who train in the afternoon

For this option you will have your first meal 2-3 hours prior to training. Your first meal should be small (20-25% of daily calories). Best options are lean protein and a couple pieces of fruit.

Two Pre Workout Meals – Best for people training in the evening

For this option you will have 2 meals prior to training. Your first meal should be around 12 or 2pm (whenever you finish your 16-18 hour fast) and your second meal should be 3-4 hours later. Both meals should be around 20% of daily calorie intake. This way you still get 60% of calories in the post workout window. 

Kinobody Lean Bulk Protocol 

14 calories per pound of body-weight on rest days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 100-120g of carbs, rest fat (4x per week)

18 calories per pound of body-weight on training days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 50g of fat, rest carbs (3x per week)

Notes – aim for 0.5-1 lbs of weight increase per week. If you are gaining too much cut calories back 10% per day. If you are not gaining weight then increase calories 10% per day. Adjust calories as necessary to stay within the 0.5-1 lbs range.

Kinobody Recomp Protocol

12 calories per pound of body-weight on rest days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 100-120g of carbs, rest fat (4x per week)

16 calories per pound of body-weight on training days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 50g of fat, rest carbs (3x per week)

Notes – goal is to maintain around your current weight while building muscle and losing  fat.  Adjust calories as necessary to stay within your given weight. You may find your weight starts to increase even though you are getting leaner. This is a good thing ;)

Kinobody Cut Protocol

10 calories per pound of body-weight on rest days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 100-120g of carbs, rest fat (4x per week)

14 calories per pound of body-weight on training days, 1-1.5g of protein per pound of bodyweight, 50g of fat, rest carbs (3x per week)

Notes – aim for 1-1.5 lbs of fat loss per week. If you are losing too much increase calories by 10% per day. If you are not losing weight decrease calories by 10% per day. Adjust as necessary to maintain fat loss range.

Sample Training Day Meal Plan

Meal #1

Chicken Breast
Apple
Potatoes, Yams, Rice or Pasta

Meal 2

Flank Steak
Potatoes, rice, pasta or yams
Veggies

Meal 3

Flank Steak
Veggies
Berries with cottage cheese, greek yogurt or casein protein

Notes – If you are working out in the evening before your last meal I recommend taking the carbs (rice, pasta or potatoes) from meal 1 and adding them to your last meal.

Sample Rest Day Meal Plan

Meal 1 

Omelet with 3-4 whole eggs and 1-2 cups of egg whites
veggies
apple

Meal 2 

Pulled Beef
Veggies
Apple

Meal 3

Pulled Beef
Veggies
Berries with cottage cheese, greek yogurt or casein

Additional Tips

Save the largest meal for last! 

Martin Berkhan recommends having your biggest meal first on rest days. I prefer to keep my first two meals smaller and have my biggest meal at the end of the day. Not only is this more convenient but I have found I am much more satiated on fewer calories when I save my largest meal for last. In addition by having my largest meal last I am able to sleep much better and I don’t get hungry at all until much later in the day. When I used to have my biggest meal first I would go to sleep hungry and I would be ravenous the next morning. This would make the fast much more challenging. 

Add low intensity cardio on rest days for more fat burning

If you want to speed up fat burning I recommend adding 45 minutes of low intensity cardio on rest days. I like to keep my heart rate between 60-70% of my max. This low intensity cardio is most effective for burning fat without driving up your appetite or interfering with your strength workouts.

Additional Resources

My Workout Routine  

Kinobody Facebook Page 

My Youtube Channel 

 

 

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  • http://www.icovi.com Daniel

    Thank you for this great article,

    One question… Even If I can’t get/buy a protein supplement can I still do fasting and everything you mention above but except supplements?
    I’m just starting w/ the Visual Impact routines & I have around 3 months going to the gym but I have like 2 months w/o going to the gym because of vacations. And will start next week w/ Visual Impact Routines.

    I’m 17 years old. Thanks! I admire your physique.

    • admin

      @Daniel

      Yes you can still do the fasting Daniel. Pre workout protein is beneficial but not completely necessary. I used to train completely fasted for a while and the results were really good.

  • Wassauce Farooq

    Can I use the Kinobody Bulk protocol with phase 1 of V.I.?
    Also which one of your protocals do you think would be more suited for Phase 2?
    And lastly, is the recomp Protocal for those that want to maintain?

    Thanks Greg! Great article, keep it up!
    Can’t wait to see you after your diet and will definately buy your book when it comes out! :)

    • admin

      @Wassauce

      Yes you can use the kinobody bulk protocol with phase 1 of V.I. For phase 2 I would do the recomp protocol and for phase 3 I would do the cut protocol.

  • Wilbur

    Hey there I was reading through your pros of intermittent fasting. And I am curious as I do have the visual impact muscle building programme, will using this in phase one be effective? as I also aim to have fat loss and lose the the guy i aquired during these holidays?

  • Wilbur

    gut*sorry… I had abs, but i got cocky and let myself go… so will it help into getting back into shape? and build harder and leaner muscles than before?

    • admin

      @Wilbur

      Yes this will be very effective combined with visual impact workout program.

  • Steve

    This is exactly the type of article layout I’ve been looking for. Thank you for sharing.

    Questi on:
    Looking at your workout routine (related link), you do 2x a week of strategic cardio. Does this article assume this is being done? Also, do you do this cardio when you are going for lean mass / body recomp or just when you are cutting?

    • admin

      @Steve

      For strategic cardio I will start with 15 minutes of intervals (1 minute hard and 2 minutes rest x 5) followed by 30 minutes of low intensity cardio. This is valuable for cutting but not necessary if you are gaining or doing a recomp unless you gain weight too quickly.

  • http://somebodylied.com Michael McIntyre @somebodylied.com

    Intermittent fasting is great for burning fat, and as you said also a lot of health benefits. Even though I am not cutting, I do still use this quite a few days a week, mainly for the mental focus as I am a final year student and also running blogs as you is more than just writing.
    Michael McIntyre @somebodylied.com recently posted..Best Leg Workouts For Women For Nice Toned Legs

  • http://www.kinobody.com Josh

    Great post! i was wondering if we ate high protein, low carbs, and few calories could you still bulk up while minimizing fat?? Also i am still youn, 14 so how many calories should i intake????

    • admin

      @Josh

      You won’t be able to add muscle eating low calories and low carbs. That is why I included higher calorie/carb days on training days. Josh you can follow the same guidelines as listed but possible bump up the calories by 200-300 if you have a fast metabolism.

  • Fred T

    Hi Greg,

    Great article and I have also myself been playing around with the lean gains protocol (16-18 hrs of fasting and RPT 3 times a week focusing on the big lifts), one of the best things I have done.

    Just a quick question as I have read that you were following a 5-6 day on very low carbs and then on the 5th or 6th day have a carb up. Are you still doing this or are you now following the LG protocol with increased carbs, mod protein and low fat on workout days now?

    • admin

      @Fred

      The 5 day low carbs / 1 day refeed is quite useful at dropping fat pretty quickly. However it is not that enjoyable and therefore I only recommend doing 2 cycles before switching back to the kinobody cut protocol as listed in the article. Right now I am doing the kinobody cut protocol because it works quite well and is much more enjoyable.

  • javier

    what brand of bcaa’s would you recommend? what about modern bcaa’s form usp labs ? and what kind and brand of protein?

  • Alpha

    Hi greg

    How do you count your calories? for eg if you take your take your main carb source do you only count the carbs in there or do you count the protein content as well. If so would the same apply for the protein source? hope this makes sense…

    Thanks

  • Ryan

    why would you want to avoid going into ketosis on rest days. correct me if im wrong but in theory rest days are ment to use the body’s fat stores for energy, and ketosis would help this, no?

    P.s.- great article btw, fully enjoyed your perspective.

    • admin

      @Ryan

      There is nothing magical about being in ketosis. If you are creating a calorie defecit your body will have no choice but to tap into your fat stores (whether you are in ketosis or not). The reason why we want to strictly avoid ketosis on this cyclical diet is because bouncing in and out of ketosis 3-4x per week isn’t fun.

  • Randy

    Aren’t the 50g of fat and apples counter productive? I mean, you’re trying to lose fat and not take in a lot of carbs (apples contain a lot of sugar> therefore carbs) on the resting days. Or are these levels of fat and carbs low enough to still be losing fat?

    • admin

      @Randy

      For training days I like to keep fat intake around 50g. Going lower then this makes it very hard to stay full no matter how much protein and carbs you are eating. On the fat loss days it’s important to get in 100-120g of carbs to avoid putting your body into ketosis. Bouncing in and out of ketosis several times per week can be uncomfortable. As well many people don’t function well going under 100g of carbs (I can’t sleep going too low). The reason you are going to be losing fat on this diet is because you will be eating significantly under your calorie maintenance on the ‘low cal’ days. Apples and fruit have fiber that keep your full and plenty of nutrition. In addition the fructose will help refill your liver glycogen which will keep you more anabolic.

  • Randy

    Sorry for the double post but, what would I eat on meal one while I’m at school? The only thing I could probably eat during school protein wise is Greek Yoghurt and Low fat protein shake(s) (22g protein, 1,4g fat), an apple, some bread and veggies. Would this suffice?

    • admin

      @Randy

      Could you bring some food to school? Otherwise greek yogurt would work.

  • Wassauce Farooq

    Hey Greg, I’m doing this with 2 pre-workout meals, so when do you recommend I take my BCAA’s? I’m asking because I won’t be going into my workout entirely fasted as Martin says we should.

    • admin

      @Wassauce

      No need for BCAA if you are eating a few hours before.

  • Jay

    Question about the One Pre Workout Meal

    If I eat at 11:30am and train at 3pm, should I still take 10g BCAA?

    • admin

      @Jay

      Nope. Only take BCAA if you are training fasted.

  • ted

    for carbs does it matter which kind? I have heard drinking v8 fusion within the hour after your workout is recommended for fast carbs. What are your thoughts on that?

    • admin

      @Ted.

      My favorite sources of carbs on training days are rice, potatoes or yams. I avoid liquid carbs because they don’t do much for your satiety. If you have trouble eating enough then liquid carbs are probably fine.

  • Alpha

    Hey Greg

    I’m still waiting for answer to my question. When counting calories for your main source of carbs, do u only count the carbs or do you count the protein content as well?

    • admin

      @Alpha

      I have an app on my iphone called ‘mynetdiary’. I just plug in the food and the amount and it plugs all the nutrient data in. Now a days I try to avoid measuring and counting food intake. I prefer to eye ball it and use common sense.

  • John

    Greg,
    Great article. For the rest day based on the sample menu it looks like the carbs are only fruit and not starchy carbs. You mentioned 100-120g of carbs but your body weight is 180 lbs. For 125lbs body weight do you still recommend 100-120g of carbs or lower? Is it a % of body weight?

    Thanks,
    John

  • Jason

    Just want to get clarification — when calculating calories for the Lean Bulk Protocol should I calculate based on my total weight (180lbs) or my lean muscle mass (151lbs)?

    Thanks

    • admin

      @jason

      Use total weight as long as you are under 16-18% body fat, which you are.

  • Joe

    Hey Greg,
    I’ve been following rusty at fitness black book fora while and that is how I found your site. First off just want to say I love your site it really follows the same types of ideas as rusty but with your own twist. Any how I was just wondering about the bulking phase while working out in the evening. If you eat before you workout does this negate some of the benefits of fasting? I mean like having the elevated hgh or would that mainly come into play in the cutting phase? I was doing the 2day a week 24 hr fasts and just switched to the every day fasts last week because I just thought it might make my body more used to it. Any how I guess I’m a little long winded.

    • admin

      @Joe

      You will still get the maximum benefits of intermittent fasting whether you lift fasted or before your final meal. My advice if your training in the evening is to keep your first two meals smaller in size (20-30% of daily calories each) and have your biggest meal following the workout (40-60% of daily calories).

  • Joe

    Ok thanks a lot for your quick response.

  • http://themagictrio.com Alykhan – The Magic Trio

    Greg,

    I follow a similar protocol. I eat two meals within a 6-8 hour feeding window starting around 1 or 2pm. First meal of the day is usually a protein shake. Workout 2-3 hours after that and second (much larger) meal is about 3 hours after that. So far this plan has been awesome for maintaining single-digit body fat while preserving muscle mass, which is my current goal.

    Alykhan
    Alykhan – The Magic Trio recently posted..The Best Fat Loss Diet Plan

  • Zach

    Hey Greg , I have been doing the fasting for 2 weeks now and love it! I have already seen noticeable gains and seem leaner. I just wanted to know when you would use the recomp phase?

    • admin

      @Zach

      The recomp phase should be done when you are pretty lean. 10-12% bodyfat and visible abs. This way you will add muscle while staying very lean.

  • http://www.behindtheworkout.com Tim @ Behind The Workout

    Great, great article. I’m fairly open minded, so I might try the lean bulk option. What is your experience with lean bulk while doing IF?
    Tim @ Behind The Workout recently posted..Workout Tips from Mr Olympia Jay Cutler at the LA Fitness Expo

    • admin

      @Tim

      Very effective man! But only if you are able to eat large amounts of food in one sitting. Most of my post workout meals were around 1200 calories and then my other 2 were around 800 calories on training days.

  • Coray

    Hello There Greg. I really love the site and all the articles especially this one. I have question. During the recomp phase, can a strength workout (Not to Failure) be done or is this desgined for bulking?

    • admin

      @Coray

      Yes you can do strength workouts in the recomp phase. You will probably see some slow and steady muscle gains even if you train mostly with low reps.

  • Daz

    Do I really need to eat that much protein? What do you think about Brad Pilon’s protein recommendations ? He says 70-120 grams a day is plenty. I’m not sure I’m willing to go that low but how about 1 gram per pound of lean body mass? I’m only interested about what the body needs to maintain or build muscle, not satiety or TEF :)

    • admin

      @Daz

      You probably don’t need to eat that much protein. However most of the studies brad pilon utilized are about the protein requirements of average people. Not guys with very low body fat and a lot of muscle mass. Be safe and get at-least 1 gram per pound of lean body mass.

  • Daz

    Also, I’m going to buy your book anyway but what can I get out of it that you haven’t already given away in this post?! haha

    Also, I found this online IF calculator that is pretty awesome in case any readers are interested.

    http://www.1percentedge.com/ifcalc/

    • admin

      @Daz

      There is definitely a lot more I saved for the book. It’s $20 so not a whole lot to invest anyways. If you feel like you are going to be fine on your own then no need to buy it.

  • valdir mendes

    I’m doing VI phase 2 and was wondering if I could use Kinobody Recomp Protocol for it? Also can I have whey shake(gold standard) plus maltodextrin right after the workout or should i skip it and eat my largest meal of the day?

    • admin

      @Valdir

      Yes, you can do the recomp protocol for phase 2 of visual impact. If you are pretty lean and don’t have a problem gaining fat then a post carb protein shake is a good idea.

  • Daz

    Thanks Greg,

    Yeah, it’s really just a ‘money thing’ for me right now so I’ll start at 1 gram per pound of LBM and see how it goes. I agree with you on the Pilon thing. I have had a good look around on the net at guys who follow his ideas and although they look pretty lean they are also pretty small regarding muscle.

    I’m already onto your book, looks like Martin is never going to release one! You get my cash instead!

  • Joey D

    Great sight and good information. Any advice for Vegetarians (I do eat fish) who want to begin this regimen. Thanks. Keep up the great work!

    • admin

      @Joey

      Make sure to eat plenty of protein with each meal. Eggs – whole eggs mixed with whites, dairy, casein/whey proteins, fish.

  • Mark

    Great post! just a quick question, would it be possible to do a body recomp at a faster rate if you were to mutiply your bodyweight in pounds by 10 on off days and 18 on days you workout? would this not result in increased muscle gain and fat loss?

    • admin

      @Mark

      More isn’t always better. I don’t think there will be additional benefits increasing the calorie surplus on training days and decreasing the deficit on cardio days. Gaining muscle and losing fat at the same time can only be done at such a rate.

  • Philippe

    Great post!
    I am thinking of using this diet with phase 1 of Visual Impact. Rusty seems to be a strong diet of working out on a fasted state, would you recommend something like this?
    Many thanks!

    • admin

      @Phillippe

      Yes this would be a great diet for visual impact.

  • Darryl

    Greg, about how much would a fit muscular guy ( ~7% body fat) with the hollywood look weigh if he’s 5’8 / 5’9 ?

    • admin

      @Darryl

      You’re looking at 155-165 lbs. A good estimate is height in cm – 100 = weight in kg at 6-8% body fat.

  • Cyrion

    I ran into your website through Kinowear a couple of days ago and I love it! I decided to start the fasting diet today and as we speak I’m almost 17 hours without any food! It was hard in the morning but now I’m pretty much ok!

    My question is this; You talk about eating your last meal at 9, is there a reason for this? I’m a student and I live with my parents so I eat with them, last night I ate at 6 for example. Is it ok if I just start counting from there?

    Cheers from Holland!

    • admin

      @Cyrion

      Hey Cyrion! Glad you are making use of the site.

      Yes having your last meal at 6pm is completely fine. It comes down to personal preference. For me if I have my last meal too early then I get hungry when I go to sleep. That is why I have my meal later.

  • Gabriel

    Great post Greg. I just started intermittent fasting this week and I’m seeing the benefits already. Waking up sharp at 5am and flying out of bed whereas I used to struggle with the snooze button until 6 or later. Also seeing higher levels of mental alertness during the day (main benefit for me). Can see the NZT comparison coming through (although I haven’t mastered five languages just yet!)

    Question for you – I’m quite lean at the moment (6’4″ and 77kg’s/170lbs). I’ve lost 7kg’s in the last four months since cutting dairy and meat from my diet. I don’t want to lose any weight and if anything I’d like to bulk up a little more. Is this just a case of eating more? Or is there a specific program that you would recommend?

    Cheers Greg (Heard about you through Kinowear – that site is pure gold)

    • admin

      @Gabriel

      You’re going to have to eat a little more if you want to add some muscle. Big post workout meals are going to by your ally here.

      Here is an article you should read that will clear up the late night eating myth – http://www.leangains.com/2011/06/is-late-night-eating-better-for-fat.html

      With that being said I usually don’t go to sleep until 11:30 or 12:00 am. You can have your big meal a couple hours earlier if you would prefer.

  • Perez

    So by taking in 30g of whey protein before a workout i prevent muscle breakdown when training while fasted?

    cheers

    • Greg

      @Perez

      That is correct.

  • Juan

    I’ve been fasting for about a week and a half now and so far I am loving it but I have a couple problems. I’ve set me self eating in between 2-10 which works perfectly for me because I start getting hungry around 2 and with ought breakfast I have a great morning . My first problem Is that im big into the bar scene but I hate throwing back 5 or 6 drinks up untill 3 in the morning, I feel as If I’m ruining my progress , should I cut drinking completely after 10? Secondly some days I have to workout at 5 am with my first meal not untill 2!! As of now I have just considered that day a lost cause and start my fast again the next day, is that detrimental to the whole experience? Thanks in Adavance for the response.

    • Greg

      @Juan

      It is okay to drink after your eating window. Just don’t do this more then 2-3x per week. Ideally stick to hard liquor mixed with diet drinks or on the rocks.

      If you’re working out at 5am you can have a whey protein drink or bcaa after the workout or simply fasting until 2pm wouldn’t be a bad idea either. You would burn quite a bit of fat.

  • Mark

    Hey Greg

    I am 5,11 and around 175 lbs at a body fat percentage of around 14%. I am looking to use the recomp protocol to try and stay at 175lbs but get my body fat down to 7%. for someone with average genetics, how long would this generally take?

    • Greg

      @Mark

      To go from 14% to 7% I think you will need to do a cut. You are looking at dropping around 12-14 lbs of fat. Doing that while building muscle will be very challenging. For a cut you’re looking at 3-4 months.

  • Jason

    Hey Greg,

    Love reading your articles keep up the good work. I want to start implementing intermitent fasting into my routine, but I’m having some trouble wrapping the amounts around my head. I’m currently 6’1″ and 218 lbs. I actually have a decent amount of muscle, but I figure I probably have about 40 lbs of body fat to lose so I’ll be doing the cut variation of the above.

    I guess I’m just a little concerned about some of the calorie totals I’m calculating. Given my weight I would be eating:

    Rest Days:
    220-330 grams of protein
    100-120 grams of carbs
    50-80 grams of fat

    Training Days:

    220-330 grams of protein
    50 grams of fat
    320-430 grams of carbs

    does this sound right? any help would be appreciated.

    I’ll be doing cardio on my “rest” days.

    • Greg

      @Jason

      Thanks man. Those look like good number except no need to go over 220 grams of protein. I recommend basing your protein intake off of lean body mass.

  • John

    Hey man!

    John here again, thanks for the reply on the other article. I was also wondering what you think would be best for me to do in my situation….

    I only have time to hit the gym on my lunch at work so I go from 1PM til about 2:30PM. If I do the intermittent fasting, what would be a simple plan to try to stick to?

    Assuming I fast from say 7PM the night before until the gym, would I just take some whey protein before I workout and then have three meals (high protein, low fat, low carb) on workout days, and opposite on non workout days?

    Sorry, all these articles are super informative, Im just getting a little confused as to a simple plan I can try out with fasting.

    I think I probably need to look about 10 pounds of fat….

    Thanks for your help, your site is great!

    • Greg

      @John

      You got the right idea. If you’re looking to lose weight then you should be tracking calories too. No need to go too low in carbs or fat. More carbs on workout days and less on rest days is what you want. Protein should be kept high everyday.

  • Gabe

    Hey Greg,
    I’ve just started fasting and so far it’s great. I’m just curious does it matter what you eat at each meal? As in does it matter what type of foods I eat at certain points in the day? I know the post workout meal is always the largest and the differing ratio on rest and training days, but is it ok to have say all your carbs in your fast meal with a little bit of protein and then bump up the amount of protein and veggies you eat in the next meal? As long as I ge the right amount of nutrients in the body it does not matter when really, unless it is a training day correct?

    • Greg

      @Gabe

      I recommend keeping protein high in each meal. Having a low protein meal may leave you hungry shortly after and you will have to have a massive amount of protein in your following meals.

  • Gabe

    Sorry, I forgot something on the last comment.

    Also, is it absolutely necessary to train consistently at the same time on each of your training days? Sometimes I work out around 12-1 and other times I’ll hit the gym at around 5-6. Is it ok to switch like that between fasted training, one preworkout meal, or two preworkout meals on different days, or should I try to keep it consistent. And are snacks ok, or are they unnecessary?

    Thanks for the time and response
    -Gabe

    • Greg

      @Gabe

      Nope. You can vary your training time.

  • Mark

    Hey man

    you recommended doing a cut in order to get down 7% body fat rather than a Recomp. How lean can you get doing a Recomp before it starts to become too challenging?

  • http://www.kinobody.com/1576/intermittent-fasting-for-maximum-muscle-and-minimum-fat/ valdir

    I’m in phase 3 of VI and i was wondering if it is still fasting if i take bcaa before my workout. Rusty says no calories whatsoever 4 hours( my fasting are like you’res about 16 or more hours sometimes even 36 hours) but i wondering cause i’ve read that bcaa raises insulin levels and has calories. would appreciate you’re take on this matter that’s been driving me nuts lol.
    valdir recently posted..Kinobody Workout for Women

    • Greg

      @Valdir

      If you are doing a fasted workout it is advisable that you take 10g of BCAA. This has been shown to increase protein synthesis, prevent muscle catabolism and increase metabolism. The small insulin increase will not have any noticeable impact on fat loss. As long as you are in a strong calorie deficit your body will be burning fat.

  • Alex

    Hey Greg,

    I’m in college and eat well throughout the week since I make my own food and don’t cheat much on weekends other than drinking and maybe a late night slice or two of pizza. My question for you is how would you recommend a regimented diet throughout the week at the same times everyday like the example you have given when I’m in class, at meetings, work, etc.? I’m coming up on summer so it will be easier when I just have a consistent work schedule throughout the week, but I would love to come up with a plan to keep things going strong when I go back to school in the fall. I’d appreciate any feedback you might be able to offer.

    • Greg

      @Alex

      Be flexible man! No need to be extremely strict just do the best you can. At the end of the day what is going to matter is if you are hitting your calories and getting in enough protein. Whether you fasted 14 hours or 18 hours is not as important.

      Of course if you pre plan your meals the day before than you can pack 1 or 2 meals with you that you should be able to eat within an hour or two of your meal time. Then you can have your final meal when you get home and are done for the day.

  • Zach

    Hey Greg
    I have been fasting for about four month now and love it! I’m starting a cut now using a modification the sliced and shredded workouts on lift days when cutting do I still want the bulk of my calories to come from carbs?

    • Greg

      @Zach

      Nice. You can go high in carbs up to 3x per week as long as you keep fat intake low (40-50g). On the other days keep your carbs low (100-150 grams) and fat intake can be a little higher (60-80g).

  • Zach

    Thanks Greg, I’m about 155 now at about 12-13% body fat and lookkng to get to about 8% so on the days where I’m only consuming 10 calories per pound of body weight should I still be getting the 100-150 g of carbs or go lower then that?

    • Greg

      @Zach

      I don’t think going under 100g of carbs is really necessary. Especially if you handle carbs quite well. If you would rather have more fats in your diet (fatty meat, whole eggs, cheeses, nuts, butter…) then you may need to reduce carbs to under 100g depending on the severity of your caloric deficit. If you can keep your fat intake around 25-30% on lower calorie days then 100-150g of carbs works very well.

  • Sam

    Hi, Greg,

    Great site, lots of good information to be found here. My question is, how would you recommend I structure diet and training around a military schedule (i.e. morning PT [long, slow distance runs or calisthenics] from 6:30-8:00)? The PT is primarily endurance/mission based, but I don’t want to lose out on the visual impact-style workouts (which I would have to do in the evening). Specifically, I like the intermittent fasting protocols but I’m not sure it would be possible to work them in with what is essentially a two-a-day workout schedule. Any advice for the military man who doesn’t want to look the marathon runner body that comes with typical military PT.

    • Greg

      @Sam

      Long morning slow runs are great for fat burning! My advice is to do them on an empty stomach for maximum fat burning. If you can fast until noon that would be terrific. Eat 2-3 big meals in a 8 hour window (12pm-8pm). As long as you are eating big meals you will be fine and you won’t lose muscle. Just perform a 3 strength training sessions per week.

  • Austin

    Hey Greg,
    If I workout in the morning right when I wake up, should I eat my biggest meal right after the workout or save my biggest meal for last like you recommended?

    • Greg

      @Austin

      Assuming calories are the same it won’t make too much of a difference. Try both and see which one works better for you. Do you feel better and have an easier time having the big meal first or last? Whichever it is then stick to that.

  • http://kinobody.com Valdir Mendes

    since you did the bonus phase on VI, would you mind explaining a few things. Did you take the creatine with anything( was thinking of something like hydro builder by OPN but it has calories on it) and did you wait a hour or immediately after working out? please let me know cause i starting my bonus phase this week.

    • Greg

      @Valdir

      I didn’t use creatine. The higher carbs and high rep training really helped with the shrink wrap effect. I don’t think it will much difference whether or not you eat right after or wait 1-2 hours.

  • http://kinobody.com Valdir Mendes

    I really appreciate the fast feed back. God bless you! As for creatine, is there a specific one you recommend( idk if prograde has one) was thinking between cron cret or creapture by beast. Also should I stay at a calorie defic during the bonus phase? I know I’m asking a lot, but I really appreciate and respect you’re opinion.

    • Greg

      Go with creatine monohydrate! You will save tons of money and it seems to work just as well as anything else. Any brand will work well. If you want to get the full benefits from creatine quickly then take 20 grams per day (5 grams taken 4x per day) for a week. Then switch to just 5 grams daily. Otherwise you can just take 5 grams daily and it will build up in your system after about a month.

      I would eat around maintenance calories for the bonus phase. You’re definitely going to want to eat plenty of carbs (especially on workout days) to maximize your glycogen stores. I wouldn’t go more than 14-16 calories per pound of bodyweight. Keep in mind creatine will cause you to gain lean mass. Don’t mistake the weight gain for fat gain.

      • http://kinobody.com Valdir Mendes

        okay so basically use the Kinobody Recomp Protocol. so no need to go into the workout in a fasted state or can i still do the fasting you advise( just take creatine pre and post.) when you say plenty of carbs( i followed you’re advise and gave up grains and corn, should i reintroduce them back) and should i take the creatine with whey post or no whey post. PS i have told everyone at the gym i go to about you’re site and will continue to do so.
        Valdir Mendes recently posted..Build Rock Hard Shoulders with Handstand Pushups

        • Greg

          Yah there is no need to go into ur workout fasted. Do whatever works better for your schedule and personal preference. Creatine pre/post workout is fine. With or without whey. Shouldn’t make a difference. Thanks for spreading the word :)

  • Julio

    Hey Greg.

    I was wondering how long have you been fasting for and whether or not it is an indefinite thing for you? Id also like to know what you think of Hemp Protein powder, its a more complete protein than whey and has numerous health benefits.

    I have started my intermitten fasting and was curious as to how you incorporate cardio in the routine?

    Thanks

    • Greg

      Fasting is a lifestyle thing for me. Having been doing it to this day. I stay flexible and listen to my body. For example today I did an early morning workout with a friend and was very hungry after. So I broke my fast early. Usually I try and go 16 hours. Some days longer.

      Don’t love hemp doesn’t taste very good and has a lot more calories for the same amount of protein as whey or casein. In addition I don’t think its very high in the BCAA but I could be wrong.

  • Ivan Lee

    Hi Greg!

    Im new to the concept of intermittent fasting but i have to say this idea is looks really attractive. Would you recommend coupling intermittent fasting with your workout for muscle mass (http://www.kinobody.com/906/workout-for-muscle-mass/)? Would there be too little rest days for a diet like this? Loving your site by the way. Good job and keep up the good work.

    Thanks,
    Ivan

    • Greg

      The workout you linked to is a very high volume routine that would require at-least maintenance or a slight surplus of calories in order to recover and grow. If fasting is new to you then you may not be able to get all those calories in a 6-8 hour window. If you have a good appetite you’d probably be fine. Get at-least 14 calories per pound of bodyweight on that routine and you will be fine.

  • Joel

    Hey Greg, i really like the simplicity and clarity of your website. I’m from Singapore and i am attempting to follow your kino recomp protocol. Just a question about training fasted… is it ok if i do not take BCAAs or whey pre-workout but just creatine? Or would you definitely go with whey pre-workout as a must? Reason is because i am using myofusion by gaspari (which is not a pure whey protein but a blend), so i am afraid if i take myofusion pre-workout i would break my fast. and I do not have any BCAAs on hand (tight on cash). thanks!

    • Greg

      Take one scoop of myofusion 30 minutes before your workout. The benefits of pre workout protein override any benefit of being in a purely fasted state.

      • Joel

        thanks greg. will give it a shot!

  • Markoss

    Hi
    Thanks for great piece of knowledge, I have one question, how to incorporate this idea when i’m working out 5 times a week monday to friday?? Should i increase my carbs intake 5 times a week and lower it on weekends??
    Thanks for answer :)

    • Greg

      If you’re going to be training 5x per week then you would likely gain weight too quickly eating surplus cals on all training days. If you’re goal is fat loss I would eat mostly at a caloric deficit with low to moderate carbs. If you’re goal is muscle gaining then you can probably consume higher carbs and cals 4x per week and low cals say on wednesday and sat/sun.

  • Josh M.

    Hey Greg,

    Just finished week 1 of Adonis Index and loving it, but I have a few questions regarding cal intake and fasting. Currently, I’m 5’10”, 150 lbs, and 9% body fat but want to add some muscle to my frame (hence AI workouts) while maintaining my definition. I was thinking the recomp protocol with 16/8 fast 4 days a week with 24 hour fast twice a week. What do you think?

    • Greg

      I wouldn’t do the 24 hour fasts at all. You’re already going to be fasting 16 hours daily AND your goal is to build muscle NOT lose fat. Therefore 24 hour fasts are rather pointless.

  • http://www.practicewingchun.com Edgar

    Hey Greg,

    IF is awesome. I’ve been doing it for less than a week and I’m already seeing results in my arms and chest. I know I’m going to see more results around my stomach/abs within a few weeks!

    Anyway, this whole experience so far has been an eye opener for me and I pay a lot more attention to the food I eat. I’ve also changed my diet to incorporate a protein shake in all my meals. But I have one question though, how should I calculate booze into all this? I love to drink during the weekend and I’m still trying to see what’s a good balance for those rest days since beer has calories and carbs.

    Thanks a lot! Please keep up the amazing work Greg!

    -Edgar
    Edgar recently posted..Notes: Chi Sao Sessions with Another Lineage

    • Greg

      If you’re dieting for fat loss I would ditch the protein shake with your meals. It’s rather pointless unless you are using the protein shake as your primary source of protein for that meal. But in general real food protein is better for fullness.

      If you’re having beer just include those calories so you still stay in a deficit. If this means reducing your carb/fat intake then do so. If you’d rather increase your cardio instead then do so. If it’s once per week then having 4-5 beers and sticking to your diet normal is fine.

      • http://www.practicewingchun.com Edgar

        Hey Greg,

        Thanks for the quick reply!

        I’m following this article for the lean bulk. I put a lot of effort in researching the best meal combinations that hits the right amount of fats/carbs during rest and workout days along with reaching the calories needed. I only add the protein shake to my meals because if I don’t, I won’t hit the protein requirement necessary for bulking up.

        If you have any recommendations for protein shake replacement, I’m open to try it!

        Thanks!
        -Edgar

        • Greg

          I’m surprised you can’t consume enough protein through food alone. Make sure to weigh your meat before cooking not after. Meat generally has 20 grams of protein per 100 grams of meat. If you need to use protein shakes that’s fine.

  • Anthony D.

    Hi Greg, I have already done your sliced and shredded workout for five weeks and my physic had a great evolution. Since then I’ve been intermittent fasting and loving it. Now I’m working out 5 times per week to build muscle (hollywood bulk up routine) and doing 45 mins of slow cardio on rest days (this is my current second week). What do you think about drinking milk (without fat) ? Is there any problem? And what you think it’s better for a lean bulk: eating high calorie for 4 or 5 days a week?

    Thank you for all your tips, you’re such a great motivation!

    • Greg

      Very cool!

      Nothing wrong with drinking milk. Since I prefer to eat as much food as possible I don’t drink any of my calories. So if you struggle to get in enough food then milk is great. If you welcome overeating at times then I would ditch any calorie drinks.

      On a lean bulk you just want to make sure your not gaining more than 0.5 lbs per week. Keep the surplus on lifting days very modest. 200-400 calories over maintenance.

  • http://fitnesswayne.com Fitness Wayne | Strength, Dieting and BJJ

    Thanks for the article Kinobody. I recently started doing IF and I have seen some pretty amazing results already. I only fast once or twice a week but it helps. I was most surprised by the fact that it isn’t difficult. I though I would be painfully hungry, but I have never gotten hungry.
    Fitness Wayne | Strength, Dieting and BJJ recently posted..Welcome to Fitness Wayne

  • Anthony D.

    May I replace the pre-workout whey for egg white protein?

    Thank you!

    • Greg

      Yes but you may want to have egg white protien about an hour before the workout because it digest slower than whey.

  • Ricardo

    Hey greg im feasting with oats+fruit+cereal postworkout but i find it to be too much filling, i get bloated and dont like the feeling. Whats your opinion on having higher gi carbs postworkout like white potatoes, white rice or a combination of sweet potatoes and higher gi carbs

    • Greg

      It’s all about overall carb intake. GI doesn’t matter a damn. Especially when you get protein with you meals (which you should be doing)! Why is there no protien in that meal?

      • Ricardo

        im getting it, i throw egg whites and whey in there too

  • Ricardo

    Hey greg i got a question, i usually do carb refeeds 2-3xweek depending on my weekends, i normally do mon-tues-thursdays high carbs, but friday-saturday-sunday i usually go 80-100 carbs. I train fasted on mondays but im feeling depleted after 3 days of low carbs, do you recommend having some carbs on sunday dinner so that i can have some energy for that workout or should i not train fasted that day. Thanks bro

    • Greg

      I see. You have two options.
      Option 1: Try adding an extra 40-80 grams of carbs to sundays dinner. So you would be taking in 120-180 grams of carbs on sunday with most of them eaten as the last meal. Ideally something slow digesting like sweet potatoes, brown rice, quinoa….. S

      Option 2: The other option would be to do your workout 2-3 hours after a meal. For the pre workout meal include about 50-60 grams of carbs.

      • Ricardo

        cool sounds good i was thinking something like option 1, what do you think of fat free yogurt as a last meal carb choice?

        • Greg

          If that’s what you like then go for it. If you’re trying to eat a lot of carbs (50+ grams) it makes sense to use a starchy source of carbs.

  • Anthony D.

    Hi Greg, I’m lean bulking at the moment, doing exercises 3x a week. Should I add low intensity cardio 2x per week? And should I take BCAA before doing low intensity cardio in fasted state?

    Thank you!

    • Greg

      Probably a wise idea to include some low intensity cardio a couple times per week. No need for BCAA before low intensity cardio.

  • ? Christian reyes

    Hey greg, im doing the fasting protocol, and I had a question do you find yourself extremely full after one of the meals in your 8 hour window? I do, and was wondering if you felt the same, so i know I’m doing it right thanks man!

    • Greg

      Yes, that’s one of the greatest benefits of IF. You get to feel full and satisfied. I love the feeling. If it feels uncomfortable then you’ll probably adapt to it in a week or two.

      • ? Christian reyes

        ahh gotcha! Thanks for the fast reply man, perhaps it is due to eating 6-8 small meals, I am not used to it. I definitely feel more satisfied;) thanks again.

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  • ? David rank

    Yo greg, i read you said you were having trouble sleeping with intermittent fasting? I too am experiencing the same thing. I almost feel pumped before bed and a lot of insomnia perhaps due to my body releasing ephiephrine? is this the case should I stop intermittent fasting?

    • Greg

      I don’t have trouble sleeping with intermittent fasting. I have trouble sleeping if I go too low in carbs. Carbs trigger the release of serotonin in the brain which make you feel relaxed and sleepy. Having some carbs (sweet potato or rolled oats) with your last meal should help your sleep. If you don’t want to add more carbs to your diet you can try using a supplement called 5-htp which I find helps.

  • Wahib Farooqui

    Hey man for the body recomp are we allowed to take in foods like milk and cereal for the post work out meal? Or is milk a fast acting carbohydrate and wouldnt fit well with dieting?

    • Greg

      If you fit it into your calories and macros you will be fine.

  • Wahib Farooqui

    So i can eat anything? even if its un-natural? I know its still important to eat naturally but for me its easiest to get a protein shake or cereal, etc for my macros.
    For workout days to fill my macros i take casein protein shakes, cereal, protein bars and stuff like that but on rest days i eat pretty naturally, yogurt, apples, chicken breast.
    Thanks so much man.

    • Greg

      Yes it’s about hitting your macros more than anything else. It’s okay to have protein shakes and cereal for some of your meals. Although these meals won’t be as filling so keep that in mind.

      • ? David rank

        Greg, if its all about the macros which makes sense for the most part, won’t the excess sugars screw with your body comp even if its fitting macros with pop tarts and cereal?

        • Greg

          I never recommend getting most of your carb intake from junk foods. I am a believer in getting most of your food intake form whole foods. That said, if you wish to have junk food and you fit it into your overall macros then you will be fine. Many of the fittest guys I know follow this strategy and maintain very low body fat year round.

  • Joao

    hi Greg, i will start a recomp protocol in January, what % you recomend for protein/carbs/ fat on training and non training days?

    • Greg

      I don’t really use percentages. These can be flawed. 1g protein per pound of goal bodyweight, 25-30% fat and the rest carbs on training days. On rest days keep fats and protein the same and reduce carbs by 100-150g.

  • Wahib Farooqui

    Quick question, what if we cant get the calories in but we can fit in all the macros, will results differ? Im supposed to be getting 2280 cal but i get in 2000 for workout days but my macros are perfect. Can it still work?

    • Greg

      You realize that makes absolutely no sense! If you hit your macros then you should also be hitting your calories.

  • Wahib

    Oh haha sorry, stupid question. I meant macros for protein carbs and fat. :p

  • Denzel Howard

    Hey man, ive been following your recomp protocol and im 140lb. So thats 2280 cal on workout days and 1630 on rest days. Its been 2 weeks and ive seen a little muscle gain, no fat loss and ive lost weight..haha i know thats strange. But do you have a solution? Oh and ive been hitting my protein, carb and fat needs on the dot as well.
    188 g of protein = workout days 172g protein = rest days
    50g fat = workout 65g fat = rest
    276g carb = workout 105g = rest
    Much appreciated

    • Greg

      If you have gained muscle and lost weight then you sure as hell lost fat. It might not be easily visible to the eye but chances are you lost some fat somewhere.

  • chris z

    Hey greg quick question, if I eat three meals per day and not really sure if I am getting enough protein should I have a protein shake after my workout including the three meals throughout the day?

    • Greg

      If your getting a decent serving of protein with all three of those meals then you’re probably getting enough protein.

  • Robert

    For potatoes could I eat mashed potatoes or would that do more harm than good?

    • Greg

      Mashed potatoes is fine. Just keep track of the amount of butter/milk you are using.

  • scott

    do you judge calories on your desired or actual weight?

    • Greg

      Use current bodyweight. You can re-adjust every 5 or 10 lbs.

  • ricardo

    hi greg, im starting a cut protocol, my question is, since you made this post 1 year ago you still advise 10 calories per pound of body-weight on rest days and 14 cals on training days?

    thanks in advance.

    • Greg

      Yes this is a good strategy. Alternatively you could eat 12 calories per day with one high carb refeed day per week. Whichever strategy is more enjoyable to stick to you should use.

  • luis

    for the lean bulk/recomp and cut protocol, the computation is based on your current body weight or the target weight? sorry it might already been asked too many times..

    • Greg

      Current bodyweight and you can adjust as you go along

  • Steven

    Is doing a half hour jog good enough for fat loss without losing muscle cause I get bored with slow pace

    • Greg

      Fat loss is mostly from the food/nutrition side of things. 30 minutes of jogging can definitely help increase fat loss or give you more room to play with. But it’s definitely not necessary.

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  • PBallard

    Looking over multiple post I have a question… On here during the cut protocol it says to eat 10 calories on non lifting days and 14 on lifting days. Should we use those #’s or the numbers we come up with from calculating our daily caloric #’s and subtracting 20% of daily intake… Then using that # daily.

    • Greg

      Both options can work. Do the one that you enjoy the most.

  • Bud

    Greg should we use the clean bulk for the super hero workout?

    • Greg

      Yes.

  • Dag-Kjetil Kristiansen

    Hey Greg!
    I’m 176 cm high and my weight is 65 kg.
    I’m thinking about starting intermittent fasting.
    I’m thinking about to start Kinobody Lean Bulk Protocoll.
    But i don’t know how much calories i should be on in training days and rest days.
    And how much protein, carbs and fat.
    Can you please help me?
    Do you sell training programs and diet programs?

  • Dag-Kjetil Kristiansen

    Hi Greg.
    My weight is 65 kg.
    I’m thinking about Your lean bulk protocol.
    Here is what i have done, is this right?

    Restday
    Calories = 1820 kcall

    Protein= 195 gram (780 kcall)

    Carbs= 120 gram (480 kcall)

    Fat= 62 gram (558 kcall)
    —————————————-
    1820 kcall in rest days.
    —————————————–

    Training day.
    Calories 2340 kcall
    Proteins= 195 (780 kcall)
    Carbs = 277,5 (1110 kcall)
    Fat = 50 (450 kcall)
    ——————————-
    2340 kcall in training day
    ——————————-

    Am i doing this right? :)

    • Greg

      Yes, that’s the right idea.

  • Kirk

    I workout first thing in the morning at 5am. Would you recommend that I have my protein/bcaa right before or right after that workout? How long after that should I wait to have my first real meal and start that 6-8 hour window of eating?

    • Greg

      You could take BCAA before training and again at 7am. I would suggest having your first meal around 10-11am, 3 pm and 7pm.

  • Marcin

    Hi Greg I bought your Kinobody manual and it’s great! I have a question about whey’s and fasting – if I also do cardio 3 times a week (abs and legs circuit training) is it ok if I take a whey protein first thing in the morning, before cardio, or should I skip that since I’m looking to get down below 10% fat? Thanks, best!

    • Greg

      I would go completely fasted for morning cardio.

      • Marcin

        ok thanks!
        One thing I’m still confused about – if my daily calories allowance is 1580 calories on rest day but I do cardio on that day and consume 500 kcal – does that mean I have to eat 2080 calories on that day?? and what about the macros then? thanks!

        • Greg

          Yes if you’re burning additional calories on a rest day then you will have to take that into account.

          • Marcin

            Ok thanks!
            I’m training with the warrior kinobody method and doing intermittent fasting – I would never have believed that it’s so easy to fast, that it’s so effective when training, and that I would really love it, after years of nervous overeating!
            Great work man!

          • Greg

            Yah hahaa! I wouldn’t be so heavily promoting IF if it didn’t work so well.

  • http://kinobody.com Rajiv Rai

    Question- Greg i wanted to ask which Whey Protein to buy..should i buy 100% GOLD natural whey protein…DOES it contain Soy protein…cause that is harmful and lowers testosterone??

    please Answer…

    • Greg

      It’s a whey protein supplement so it doesn’t contain soy protein.

      I’d personally recommend a sustained release protein. Something that contains whey/casein/egg protein. Alternatively, milk protein isolate works just as well. This is ideal if you’re using this protein for a meal replacement and not just after workouts.

  • Andreas

    I’m thinking about doing this meal plan but with 2 meal each day instead of 3. Witch 2 meals would you put on the training day and on the rest day?

    and what kind of routine would you recommend with this meal plan?

    • Greg

      Hit the macros for each day and you can have a variety of different meals.

  • Daniel

    Stupid question, but this type of diet would work really well with the warrior or strength and density routines you have outlined right?

    • Greg

      Yes it will work very well with them.

  • Andreas

    This is how my meal plan look like right know. what do you think? i will start doing the greek good routine tomorrow :) im 6 foot 2, 79 kilo. my goal is the greek god physique about 86 kilo

    Training day

    First Meal:

    Lean Meats, complex and simple carbs, protein powder

    Second Meal:

    Lean meats, cottage cheese and vegetables

    Rest Day

    First meal:

    Fattier meat, eggs and vegetables

    Second meal:

    Fattiers meat, eggs and vegetables

    Thanks!

    • Greg

      Yah that looks like a good set up. On training days you could probably include carbs in both the first and second meal and make the cottage cheese the last meal before bed.

      • Jansson

        Thanks for the answer :) yes i gonna include some more simpe/complex carbs in the second meal. just a quick question. Milk on training days or rest day?

        • Greg

          You could have it on either day. That said, not a huge promoter of drinking milk. Liquid calories won’t do much to raise satiety. If you need to use milk I prefer unsweetened almond milk, much lower in calories and less sweet.

          • Jansson

            What about doing the ultimate fat burning workout on the rest day? would it work with the my meal plan.

          • Greg

            Yah you could do that 2-3x per week on rest days.

        • Jansson

          Simple or complex carbs in both meals? or just simple in post workout meal and complex in the next meal.

          • Greg

            It really won’t make a difference. There’s no need for simple carbs after a workout. You don’t need to refill glycogen immediately after training.

  • Radu

    Hi Greg!

    Great stuff! You managed to condense the most important information of Leangains in one article! That site has great information but I’ll be damned if I can find the things I’m looking for due to the design.

    Anyway, I wanted to ask you something real fast. Is it ok to have 100 grams of fat on the rest days? And 420 grams of carbs on the training day?

    I’m in a bit of a shock since I just finished a fat loss diet and ate only 1800 calories/day :))
    2790 calories on lifting days at 155 lbs seems like too much. Or is it?

    Thanks a lot!

    • Greg

      If you follow the macro calculations from this article you’ll be fine. 2790 will be a decent size deficit but you’ll off set that with the lower calorie days on rest days. I actually prefer to keep carbs and fats more balanced these days. So if you want, you can decrease carbs and increase fats on training days while increasing carbs and decreasing fats on rest days. This will keep the macros more balanced.

      • Radu

        Thanks a lot!

    • Jansson

      Would it be better to use some faster carbs in the post workout meal like white rice and potatos and stick to slower carbs like borwn rice and sweet potato in the second meal? maby it dosent matter really

      • Greg

        It honestly doesn’t really matter. There’s no reason why you need fast acting carbs after a workout. Plus if you’re eating high glycemic carbs with protein, veggies and fat, it will absorb slowly.

  • Jansson

    What kind of routines would suit this meal plan?

    • Greg

      Try the dual pyramid training routine.

  • Justin

    What’s up Greg, thanks for the great post. I weigh 138 lbs and am going for body recomp. So according to your formula I would be taking in 13,248 calories per week. Could I just eat 1892 calories per day (since 13,248/7 = 1892) while making sure to hit macros? Or does varying calories on work/rest days make a huge difference when going for body recomp?

    -Justin

    • Greg

      You could probably just eat the same number of calories each day and get pretty similar results. I do feel that there is a slight benefit to fluctuating calories with more calories on workout days. But if you prefer the simplicity of keeping it the same then do that.

  • Adel-Alexander Aldilemi

    Hey Greg, I’ve been reading a few places that Intermittent fasting reduces IGF-1, is that something you’ve heard of?

    • Greg

      In the words of Brad Pilon, “IGF-1 should not be confused with growth hormone, or with the variant of IGF-1, called mechano-growth factor 1, which is responsible for the muscle growth associated with contraction (muscular work). They are different, but MGF is often confused with or simply referred to as IGF-1.” – See more at: http://bradpilon.com/weight-loss/the-52-diet-my-review/#sthash.yUl1js49.dpuf

      Reducing IGF-1 is great for health and disease prevention.

      • Adel-Alexander Aldilemi

        So the IGF-1 that is mentioned is Insulin Growth like factor 1 right? And Intermittent fasting does reduce it right?

        • Greg

          Yep, that’s a good thing though.

          • Adel-Alexander Aldilemi

            Sweet. :)

  • Adel-Alexander Aldilemi

    Hey greg wanted to ask, can you drink green tea while doing intermittent fasting?

    • Greg

      Yes… Some people feel sick drinking green tea in the fasted state. This has been the case for me. So be weary of that when trying. I prefer to drink grean tea later in the day when I’m not fasting.

  • Adel-Alexander Aldilemi

    Should I take my egg protein before training in a fasted state? Or is it okay to train without taking anything?

    • Greg

      I actually train completely fasted these days and it works very well as long as my overall protein intake is hit! No need for egg protein before training.

  • Bud

    How long of a process does the recomp diet take. I’ve cut down a bit of body fat. I don’t have a clear 6 pack without flexing but I’ve been using the Christian Bale diet outline. I was thinking of recomp to stay the same weight but shed body fat. But I don’t want it to take 2 months or anything. Thanks

    • Greg

      A good recoup strategy should allow for 2 lbs of fat loss per month and 1-2 lbs of muscle gain.

  • Raven

    Can you tell me if this plan it is ok:

    -Wake up 7 am

    -First meal 1 pm (healthy and small) taking almost always fruits and carbs example: rice, yogurt and banana

    -Workout and cardio session(as you outlined on beach program :cardio) 3:30pm to 5 pm (I take BCAA’S before workout)

    -Second Meal 6:30 (healthy and small) taking proteins and carbs example: eggs with beans or tuna with protein shake

    -Last meal 8 or 9 pm (big meal) taking more carbs and protein with some fats) rice or spaguetti with cheese ,veggies, meat or chicken and 1 glass of milk

    I am 149 lbs and 5.2 of height and 18 % bf aprox.

    Thank you

    Regards

    • Greg

      Yeah that looks like a good set up! Definitely make sure to include some proteins in the first meal though.

  • Kirk

    Hi Greg, I love the Intermittent Fasting idea and have already ditched the eating every 2-3 hour routine for 3 big meals but I’m having trouble finding the best way to fit Intermittent Fasting it into my life schedule. I feel like it’s tailored well for those who workout in the afternoon/evening so they can wait until noon to eat. However, I’m up by 5am every day and at the gym by 6am. I like to train fasted after only a cup of black coffee. I feel like after a workout, I need to feed my muscles so I usually have a shake with chocolate protein, a banana, almond milk, and almond butter around 7-8am which usually keeps me full and satisfied until around 11 or 12. To stick with Intermittent Fast should I go with lunch and an early dinner around 6pm and keep all of my calories between that 10 hour window between 8am & 6pm? Is that a small enough window? Any thoughts/suggestions/ideas are welcome. Thanks.

    • Greg

      THere’s no need to eat after training. As long as you’re hitting your daily calories, proteins, fats and carbs there will be next to know difference. If you are very concerned, then take 10g of BCAA right before your workout.

  • K.C.

    Hi Greg. OK…I’m about to turn 58, weigh in at about 210 with 32% BF (yeah I know). LOL I used to work out and have a pretty good body but never got into to the teens with BF

    I want to get back to the gym and looking at routines and found yours. All of your guys in testimonials were young with one exception. I have a few questions that I hope you can answer before I fully engage.

    1) will the program work for someone my age?
    2) I’m confused about the fasting and the diet. Is that all explained in detail in the book? I don’t mind cooking but…
    3) I don’t want that to be my life either. .Can I use good quality protein drinks for meal replacements?
    4) Since I want to lose FAT as quickly as possible and regain more of my muscle, will this program allow me to get into pretty good shape in minimum of what time?
    5) I was on HCG and considering going back on that to lose fat quickly. Have you have an knowledge how that would work in conjunction with your program?
    6) fasting doesn’t bother me much but I do hope that it is explained really well. Also does your body go into starvation mode and prevent you from actually losing fat? What about moods, sleep, and energy?

    I appreciate your response and look forward to going back to the gym MONDAY!!!

    Thanks,

    K.C.

    • Greg

      I have lots of testimonials from people who are in their 40’s and 50’s.

      1) Yes. the same principles apply.
      2) Yes.
      3) Yes as long as you hit your macros
      4) There’s an aggressive fat loss diet plan that’s an upsell to the warrior shredding program. I’d recommend starting there for the first 2 months to drop fat quickly.
      5) Don’t do HCG. It works because you’re taking in 500 calories.
      6) No that’s a myth. I get into that in the book. Fasting is awesome for mood, sleep and energy.

  • Ricardo

    Hey greg im starting to backload my carbs do you think thats a good strategy? instead of having 2 carb meals on a training day, im eating a carb loaded meal the night before a weight training day and have a good postworkout carb meal then followed by 2 protein/fat/veggies (if im doing weights the day after i eat carbs again that night)

    • Greg

      As long as overall carb intake is the same, it won’t make much of a difference. Do whatever is more enjoyable.

      • Ricardo

        Thanks dude will do

  • Miki

    Yo Greg

    really appreciate what your doing here with your blog , i’ve read almost every article
    keep up the good work !

    i have a question about intermittet fasting , i’m used to drink a casin shake bevor i go to bed around 11pm. i started doing intermittet fasting and i’m eating from 12 to 8pm, now should i take the casin shake right after my last meal or can i still drink it bevor i go to bed ?

    is it bad to drink casin bevor sleep while intermittet fasting ? because it digest slow and i guess the fasting window wil drastically shrink ?

    i would like to hear your opinion on this .. thanks

    • Greg

      Well if you’re getting enough protein from whole food then you won’t need the casein shake. That said, a casein shake is a great option for the end of your fast. ALthough I prefer cottage cheese as a slow digesting protein. And no, it won’t shrink the fasting window. You’re still fasting even though you’ll be getting amino acids in your bloodstream for several hours.

  • Steve

    Hi grey , what do regard as the best product to take , whey protein or bcca , should I take a particular one at post and pre workout , thanks a mil

    • Greg

      You don’t need either if you’re getting ample amounts of protein from whole food. As well, you don’t have to take protein supplements before/after training. Just eat a meal within 2-3 hours of your workout and you’ll be fine. If you’re training completely fasted then BCAAs can help.

  • Daniel

    Greg, I sent you an email last Friday titled “Possible Coaching”. You coaching page is freezing up and crashing the browser on my pc and my iPad, so I just emailed about it. Want to see if you’d received it. Thanks.

    • Greg

      Got it thanks

    • http://comcast Bob Cirillo

      Hey Greg! If I get the $7.00 shredding sheets, am I obligated to purchase more?

      • Greg

        Of course not.

  • George

    Hey Greg,

    I like to do my cardio in the mornings (Intervals, Sprints, Walking on a incline), then follow up my strength training later in the day. Would I just consume coffee, water, and tea to help with the morning cardio and then follow the fasting protocol for afternoon/evening training?

    Thanks,

    George

    • Greg

      Yeah exactly. But you really don’t need to do all that cardio in the morning. Just get some walking on your rest days and that’s plenty.

  • Mike

    Hey Greg,

    The recomp protocol you list here is different than the one in your GG Program. I am 185lbs and using the MEGA routines as my current workout. Here is how my current cals/macros shape up:

    Training Day: 3,000 cals, 185g protein, 83g fat, 370g carbs
    Rest Day: 2300 cals, 185g protein, 60g fat, 250g carbs

    It looks like you are recommending to go super low in carbs and higher fat on rest days which is way different than my current approach.

    If my calculations are correct using the above recommendations for rest days I would be eating 185g protein, 120g carbs, and 120g fat. That seems like an awful lot of fat. I know I can sub in more protein for fat, but that still puts me over 100g of fat for a rest day. Am I missing something?

    • Greg

      Yah this is an old article. I since prefer a much more balanced approach. Go with the protocol in the GG program.

  • mikEe

    A little confused about Cut Protocol workout days eat higher calories with high carbs and low fat on training days Rest days Eat lower calories with low carbs and moderate fat on rest days .But further down its reads reverse .thanks

    • Greg

      I think you misunderstood the bottom part. Read again. Or copy and paste what part you’re talking about.

  • Nick C UK

    Hi Greg,

    Thanks for an awesomely informative website!

    Been gymming regularly for nearly a year now and have managed to drop most of the fat mass. This has mostly been through lifting, interval training and long gym sessions.

    Your tips and videos on IF really helped me shift the last of it, while reducing time at the gym, so a huge thanks!!

    Im 1.8m tall and now down to 70.5kg. The last 4-position calliper pinch test came up with just under 8% body fat. Im guessing I may be closer to 10 though as I still have a little bit hiding lower abs and upper legs, particularly glutes.

    Currently Im following the cut-protocol recs you’ve given.

    My question is what would be your recommendation for when to start bulking? Would you say to carry on cutting until I have full definition everywhere (my muscle mass isn’t that big after cutting though so Im not sure how much to expect to see)? Or would you say that the rest will burn off as you increase muscle mass on the lean gains set?

    Thanks again!

    Nick

    • http://kinobody.com/ Greg

      I’d keep cutting until you’re at your goal level of leanness. Then do a two week maintenance period. Finally, you can move into a lean bulk.

      • http://kinobody.com/diet-and-nutrition/intermittent-fasting-for-maximum-muscle-and-minimum-fat/ Nick C UK

        Thanks for the reply. Thought my question wasn’t registered.

  • john

    Hey Greg,

    I was wondering if I should be taking BCAA on my off days. If so, should I just take it later in the day after I’m done fasting? Thanks!

    • http://kinobody.com/ Greg

      No need for BCAA on off days.

      • John

        Thank you!

  • John

    Would you recommend taking BCAA on days off?

    • John

      Sorry Didn’t see your last answer, thanks!

    • http://kinobody.com/ Greg

      Probably won’t be needed unless you’re eating low protein that day.

  • Justin

    Hi Greg,
    If you do cardio like running sprints on your off days a couple days a week, how do you adjust your calories for those days?

    • Kinobody

      Keep it the same or increase 300-400 depending how much cals you burn.