“I’ve been following you for some time now and appreciate all the advice you’ve given. When it comes to a young male looking to put on good weight, would your attitude on breakfast change?”
If this young man didn’t care about body fat gain, then I would say go for it and eat around the clock. But the reality is that most men have the common sense to realise that they will be less happy with more body fat on them, and judging by your choice of words ‘good weight’, it’s probable that you fall into that category too.
Therefore, no my attitude towards breakfast doesn’t change – NO breakfast! Only black coffee.
Intermittent Fasting will be a helpful tool that will keep you lean, and keep the quality of your weight gain to be ‘clean’.
The variables that change should not be the eating structure. They should be your calories and macros. Get more carbs (oats, rice, berries, apples etc.) and healthy fats.
Keep your eating window small – it will keep you controlled.
“Is lifting in a fasted state beneficial? I’ve done it plenty of times but I really respect what you have to say. I’ve been fasting for about 17 hours today and was about to go hit chest and tri but wanted to see what you thought.”
I have lifted fasted for years, and have had absolutely no issue with this – black coffee gives me plenty of energy for high performance (as well as being well slept).
The BIGGEST issues I’ve seen with guys not doing well with lifting when fasted are:
- They were in too great of a calorie deficit (20% or more, in my strong opinion)
- They were still eating stuff that messes with their energy, and it’s fluctuations (think sugar, alcohol)
Don’t do those, and you will be absolutely fine. High protein, high fiber WITHOUT the sugar and booze messing about with your energy, hunger and mental focus.
“Thanks for responding. I basically want to know where I should be at in general. I’m noticing I’m having trouble getting more than 1600 calories in a day but when I do research it says I should be closer to 2600. I know everyone’s body’s can work at different capacity. Just want to make sure I’m not hurting my body with working out/cardio and not getting enough calories. I think I get enough protein, fats and carbs in my diet so that I’m not worried about that.
(This guy mentioned in his previous message that he wanted to drop down to 155, so yes, he wants to be in a deficit.)
The most important mindset with this problem, is an internal one versus an external one.
Alright, so what really matters here is what works for you, and what doesn’t work for you. If an online calculator (external) says that you should eat 2600 and you do this and you start gaining three pounds a week, then that’s a bloody disaster.
But say, 2000 calories works really well and you’re losing 1.25 pounds per week?
Stick to that.
The key here is to trial and experiment with this stuff, and remember that most online calculators are not very accurate FOR YOU, as they’re done on population averages, and they’re a very broad estimate.
Track your intake and your bodyweight, track the relative weekly changes, and then see what calorie levels work well for you.