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Just returned from a 10-day cruise surrounded by friends, family, activities… and unlimited access to food, aggressively flavored and insanely tasty, and predictably comprised of cheap calories like refined wheat and starches.
Damn, it was awesome.
Of course, we managed to find wholesome food like vegetables, fruits, and unprocessed meats. But what’s the fun in just those items while on a cruise ship? Although we ate wholesome nutrients, I’d be lying if we didn’t consume a fair share of low-quality but extremely flavorful stuff.
Lots of it.
But no matter. The first half of the trip I maintained the intermittent fasting lifestyle and preserved visually the same body composition; but halfway through I decided to do a simple experiment of one that would extend past the end of the cruise.
Halfway through I decided to just smash it. I ate whatever, whenever, and however. I forced myself to overeat all kinds of food — wholefood, refined starches, sugar, snacks… round the clock.
The first couple of days of gluttony were fun, but I quickly felt like shit, and food craving went up. I became bloated and the muscular definitions slowly disappeared. No doubt most of this was increased glycogen storage and water retention, but without a reversal in the trend, it’s a sure a path to overweight and obesity.
What is this simple experiment of one?
To maintain body weight and body composition, a caloric excess must be followed by a caloric deficit. I wanted to see what happens if I follow a stretch of overeating by a period of under-eating. A yin-yang eating pattern.
Now that the cruise (and thus the caloric excess) is over, the caloric deficit begins. It’s time to “turn off the valve.”
I decided that for each of the next 3 days I’ll just eat one meal per day. I’ll eat until I’m satisfactorily full — maybe even silly-full — and then no more. This essentially causes a tolerable caloric deficit.
After the 3 days of extended IF, I’ll return to the normal daily intermittent fasting, and then reassess my body weight and composition to see if I need to add a couple more days.
Today was the first day of eating just one meal. I basically fasted 23 hours, and ate a rather large meal to complete satisfaction. As I send off this update post, I’m happily full, yet I’ve created a caloric deficit through the extended IF.
I’ll keep updating you with this simple little experiment, the point of which being: where there’s a caloric excess, there must be a caloric deficit.
This is based on the classic theory of feast and famine, the macro version of the daily intermittent fasting from which I’ve benefited for nearly 2 years.