Cardio timing fat loss

Two key questions covered in this article:

  • Is there a right and a wrong time to do cardio for fat loss?
  • If I need/want to do cardio anyway, is there a right and wrong time to do it?


Q. Is there a right and a wrong time to do cardio for fat loss?

A. Yes and no.

Cardio for fat loss is nearly always a bad idea, it is an exceptionally poor time investment and not necessary. Two exceptions:

  1. Exceptionally lean individuals trying to get the stubborn fat off themselves. (More on this below.)
  2. Small women that due to their size actually don’t qualify for much food each day to maintain a calorie deficit, and they’d literally prefer to move more to allow for bigger meals.
A Recap on the Nutritional Hierarchy of Importance for Fat LossNutritional Hierarchy of Importance Pyramid

1. The most important factor in whether you gain or lose weight is the net calorie balance for the day. Fat, or more accurately free fatty acids, are constantly being shuttled in and out of the fat stores throughout the day. Whether you are left with more or less at the end of the day is down to your energy intake vs expenditure.  You can eat less, or move more to achieve this but the net result between the two will be the same.

2. The second most important factor – the macronutrients that make up that calorie balance, as this affects the degree to which we gain/lose muscle relative to fat when bulking/dieting.

3. Nutrient timing comes in a distant third. – This is why I don’t tell clients to rush home and eat “within an hour” or something like that. (I’m purposefully ignoring micronutrition, as that’s not going to keep you from losing fat, but it is important for health.)

The thing I want you to take away from this is that cardio, regardless of time performed, is unlikely to have any affect on overall fat stores at the end of the day – the energy balance and the macros are way more important.

The exception to the above is in the case of the exceptionally lean individual.

On stubborn fat removal

Firstly, let’s define stubborn fat as being the fat that is physiologically different and thus difficult to burn off. Stubborn fat is the fat on your lower back, legs and butt, and unless you’re already looking like the guys above, you don’t have any stubborn fat concerns yet, it’s just fat.

Intermittent Fasting - No Cardio - Shredded Abs

Fasted cardio may increase the theoretical limit on the amount of fat burning that can take place in a day by providing greater access to the stubborn body fat. Cardio improves blood flow around the body, and doing it when fasted provides hormonally favourable conditions for shifting the stubborn body fat (insulin down, catecholamines up, etc.).

Does this mean we should all do fasted cardio to get shredded?

No, you should be able to get to a similar condition as the guys in the images above before needing it to get at the stubborn fat. Related article, ‘When is Cardio a Valid Tool for Fat Loss with Intermittent Fasting?‘ (Or geek out on this with Lyle McDonald’s book here.)


Q. If I need/want to do cardio anyway, is there a right and wrong time to do it?

It depends on how serious you are about this cardio work. If you’re doing cardio just for fun, the it doesn’t really matter what time you do it.

If you are fairly serious, you have a race for example, and are looking to increase cardiovascular and respiratory endurance further, you need to think of the impact that the strength workouts will have on that training.

If you’re doing marathon training for example, you will be running several times a week. From my limited understanding is that the once weekly longer run is key for driving endurance adaptations. So, although it’s impossible to position your strength workouts without compromising some running sessions, you will want to give yourself at least enough time for recovery so that the long run isn’t compromised. (Lyle McDonald has a good article on maintaining strength whole marathon training here.)

Important to note: Endurance work can compromise strength adaptations. Running is arguably the worst for it, so if you don’t have good reason then avoid it. More on this in my article, ‘On Cardio for the Physique-Focused Trainee‘.


Training Principles | Training Programs | CardioFAQ

209 Comments on “When NOT To Do Cardio”

  1. Tony T

    Thanks Christine! I lived there over 15 years and hope to return one day. I know that hike down to Hidden very well, there is great fishing in that lake too..

  2. TonyT

    Here’s a worthless comment, but I know exactly where the picture above with the mountains was taken. Glacier National Park in Montana near Logan Pass. I lived 25 miles from that very spot and have climbed the mountain on the far left(Mt Gould) and the furthest peak in middle Mt. Pollock. The little crown mountain between the two is called Bishop’s Cap. That was the only cardio I’ve ever really enjoyed. Thanks for everything Andy!

    1. Christine Woodbridge

      Tony T, That wasn’t a worthless comment. My new husband and I just came back from Montana and also recognized that picture. We hiked down to Hidden Lake and also enjoyed the cardio on trip back up! Kudos to you for those climbs!

  3. Shokraneh

    Hi Andy,
    I was wondering what your thoughts are about doing a fasted 10-15 mins of HIIT followed by a carb and protein breakfast then approx 30-60 mins later a leg session followed by post workout meal as usual? I find at times not only does this method shock my body but also saves me time and it’s just a little different!
    Thank you!

  4. Jimmy

    Hi,

    I do some cardio, not for fatloss, and
    have some questions for you.

    I do 30 min cardio 1-2 times a week:
    10min warmup
    30 sec sprinting x 4-6 times with 90-120sec “rests”
    5-10 min cooldown

    1. Is it better do cardio before I breake my fast or after breaking it?
    2. Shall I take BCAA before the training if I do it before breaking the fast?

    I do cardio becouse my heart need it ;)

    Thanks for best trainingblogg ever,
    Jimmy

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Jimmy.
      Doesn’t matter about timing unless you’re doing it specifically for stubborn fat loss.
      No BCAAs, especially relevant if it is for that latter effect. More on that in a recent Facebook comment answer I did here.

  5. Arnold_B

    Hello,

    So I’m on a 500kcal deficit, doing 16:8 fasting and on rest days I do LISS Cardio for 30min after taking Caffeine+Yohimbine.

    So I know in the article you said it’s better not to do cardio for the caloric deficit but to just eat less. BUT now it seems that it’s universally agreed that fasted cardio does indeed make sense with taking Yohimbine, so if I’m fasted for 15-16h in order to achieve maximum natural fatburn + do fasted cardio after yohimbine ingestion shouldn’t that burn extra fat? Like I mean that in that cardio session supported by yohimbine+16h fast I will burn more “fat calories” than the calories I gain later from eating +300g?

    More simplified:
    If I burn 300kcal from fasted(+yohimbine) cardio it will be mostly fat(90%?).
    If I later eat additional 300kcal to keep the 500kcal deficit, the body isn’t gona store 90% of that as fat right?

    So wouldn’t I be “directly” losing mostly fat that way?

  6. Amanda

    Hi Andy.

    Thanks for the educative article :)
    I am trying to reduce my body fat percentage ( currently 18.9) to add some muscle definition to my figure especially my abs and arms.

    What’s the ideal way to achieve this goal? There’s so much information out there and its confusing.
    Hope you’re able to help me.

    Thank you.

    Amanda

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Amanda.
      “What’s the ideal way to achieve this goal?”
      Sustain a calorie deficit in a way you find easiest, weight train.
      Click the ‘start here’ tab on the menu bar as everything you need can be found there for my recommendations.

  7. Lorenzo B.

    Hi Andy, nice explanation of fat metabolism. But would like to ask you why do you still conclude that cardio useless for fatloss? I understand that weight lifting is more effective but a 12km run clocks in at about 1000 calories during the exercise + the calories consumed for the raised metabolism during the day. Most people don’t enjoy running but i actually do. I do some strength training (15 min HIIT) for the upper body (push-ups, triceps, biceps, shoulders) and leave the legwork to running. So ideally I would run 3 x week and lift 2 x week. I’m also eating at a deficit (approx 500 cal). Do you see anything wrong with my approach?

    1. Andy Morgan

      Lorenzo, please don’t put words in my mouth. I have not said cardio is useless for fat loss, I’ve said it is a poor time investment.
      More thoughts on cardio here.

  8. Landon

    Hey Andy,

    I need to train for a half-marathon I was roped into and was hoping you could give me some insight on whether or not my plan makes sense. Please note that I am currently undergoing a cut (-35/+10).

    Feeding Window -> 1:00PM to 9:00PM.

    Day 1: Weight Training (4PM, Not Fasted)
    Day 2: 5KM Run (5AM, Fasted)
    Day 3: Weight Training (4PM, Not Fasted)
    Day 4: 5KM Run (5AM, Fasted)
    Day 5: Rest Day
    Day 6: Weight Training (4PM, Not Fasted)
    Day 7: 10KM Run (5AM, Fasted)

    1) How does that look?
    2) Would carb loading the night prior better fuel my morning fasted run?
    3) Should I take BCAAs before and after my run? It will be fairly high intensity.
    4) How should I adjust my caloric intake for my rest days that involve the added cardio? E.g. if I run and burn 400 calories in the morning should I tack on an extra 400 calories of protein/fat or rather 100g~ carbs?

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Landon.
      1. Not withstanding the endurance vs strength compromise, it looks fine.
      2. You’ll need to add in carbs to make up for the energy expenditure. Experiment putting that the night before, or the day of your running but after. See which works better for you.
      3. Arguably not necessary because it’s endurance based work.
      4. Running on average is going to burn 8-12kCal/minute. Elite level runners will do ~20kCal/minute.

      1. Landon

        Awesome, thanks Andy. However point 4 is still unclear; should I be eating X calories in fat/protein or carbs if I run on a rest day? Where X is the calories burnt during my run.

        Example if I burnt 400 calories should I eat extra fat and protein or 400 calories of carbs? And again, rest day.

  9. Nick

    I just started carb backloading. I backload on the night before my AM lifting sessions. When would you recommend doing cardio for the best fat loss results without hindering muscle growth? I lift MWF and do cardio on the in between days. Should I lift at night before my backload or in the morning? Thank you!

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Nick.
      1. I don’t recommend cardio.
      2. Thoughts on timing and set-up here.

      More importantly though, don’t try and follow the advice of two people at once. If you want to follow Keifer’s ‘Carb Backloading’ method, do it fully.

  10. Valentin

    Hey Andy, great article. I just have one question.
    Does taking a bit of whey with water plus 3 gr of creatine interrups the so called fasting period?
    I take this after my cardio in the morning and i skip breakfast (i drink a lot of water) and eat at 12pm.
    Thanks.

  11. Anusha

    I have a question.. I’m 23 years girl.. Need to lose fat as i’m overweight. What will be the best time for me to workout and lose fat? pLease reply.

  12. Sean Carlson (@seankcarlson)

    Andy, Great information, as always. Keep up the great work! Question: I’m on a cut so non-lifting days are calorie deficit days. Today was a non-lifting day that started with a 3-hour mountain bike ride that came in north of 1200 calories burned. I do this for fun, not for fat loss. What do you recommend the feeding look like on this day? If I stick to my rest day macros, it will be nearly a net zero calorie day, which surely can’t be good for recovery, right?
    Best, Sean

    1. Andy Morgan

      Add in 1200 calories of whatever the hell you like/are craving Sean. Clearly carbs as part of that would be a sensible idea. :)

  13. Michelle Nethersole

    Hi Andy, I am what you would consider an “unprofessional bodybuilder.” I do it because I like to have a good figure and do NOT like the “stick-figure look.” I was told by a trainer at my gym that I shouldn’t do cardio after doing legs, as I go heavy and that I would end up burning muscle tissue by doing cardio immediately after my quad workout. Is this true? I have been working out for years and I also have seemed to reach a plateau with my cardio. I try to change it up; for example, I will do the treadmill for 30 minutes at level 15 at 3.3 speed for a month, then switch to the elliptical for a month, and so on. I have been mixing it up lately though, one day I do treadmill, next day, elliptical and next, stairmaster. Any ideas on how I can lose the 2 stubborn inches off my waist and obliques?
    I know that “spot reduction” does not work.
    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
    Sincerely,

    Michelle

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Michelle. Answered in order.
      1. No, provided your diet is in check. (Protein consumption high enough, deficit not too extreme, timing not way off.)
      2. Patience. Not cardio.

      1. Michelle N.

        Hi Andy, and thank you for taking the time to answer my questions!!!
        I’m a bit confused as to what you mean in number 1-no, is that I won’t break down muscle tissue if I do cardio after doing a heavy quad workout?
        I always make sure to take in enough protein, right after I am done with my entire workout-with or without cardio.
        In number 2, are you saying that I should be patient with trying to lose the 2 inches off my stomach and still do the cardio? As I don’t see how I can lose the bodyfat without doing cardio.

          1. Michelle N.

            Hello again!! So, I won’t break down muscle tissue if I do cardio after doing a heavy quad workout.
            I am fairly lean, except for the 2 inches that I have on my abdomen and obliques.
            I can’t do fasting as I have type 1 diabetes and have had experiences with hypoglycemia while working out.
            So I cannot go for a prolonged period of time without carbs, unless my blood-sugar levels are elevated.

            1. Michelle N.

              Hi Andy, I don’t know if you had replied to the previous post that I left on Nov 5th, 2013. I cannot do fasting as I have type 1 diabetes.
              I’m just wondering if you have any suggestions as to how I can lose the inches off my abdomen. I also have frequent episodes of hypoglycemia, in which I have to have something sweet to bring my blood-sugar levels up again. This is probably what is causing me to not lose the excess body fat. Sometimes, I just mix sugar in water and drink it to bring my blood-sugar levels up.
              I’m just very frustrated..
              Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!!!

              Michelle N.

            2. Andy Morgan

              Michelle, I’m afraid I can’t advise you given your condition. Best to speak to your doctor.

  14. Lejon

    Hi Andy!
    I want to know how to do on leangains if you NEED cardio. I do not use cardio to get leaner I use it to get better cardio for my martial arts training, no cardio for me would be detrimental as you may understand.

    How do you do when you need cardio, when do I do it? I do not mind if it hinder my muscle growth, I want to get leaner not bigger.

    I really do not find anything about this when it comes to needing cardio instead of wanting cardio just for fatburning. I don’t want it for fatburning, I need it to get better cardio but I still want to get as lean as possible.

    I really appreciate if you could shed some light on this…

    Thanks!

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Lejon. Do it whenever it fits your schedule best. Consider adding in some extra carbs to make up for the extra energy expenditure.

      1. Lejon

        Ok, that sounds easy, that is what I’m doing and it feels better now doing it because of your answer.

        I will add carbs if I start to lose too much weight per week or feeling tired during the days.

        Thanks for you advice, much appreciated!

  15. graham

    Hey Andy,

    Can you discuss a bit more on body- recomp?

    the reason for that, i know alot of guys are worried about putting body-fat on but already on 25%. I know this wont happen with good macros etc but need to hit this home.

  16. Maik

    Havent read the article but cardio is very well worth it for losing weight. If you do cardio and lets say you lose about 200 calories on the cardio workout you will lose another 200 over the day because your metbolism speeds up. Its not a claim that Iam doing, there was a study to show this.

    Also you always have to eat above the calories you need to stay alive (sorry lost the word for it in English ^^) so the only way to speed your fat loss up is to do more cardio.

    But yes muscle training is even more important, especially in a diet. But if you can do both and eat right you are golden.

    1. Andy Morgan

      Please read the articles before posting a comment if you would like a response. I think it’s basic manners.

  17. SGo

    Thank you for the great information. I’ve been doing IF for a few months now while bulking up and I’ve noticed that my body fat % doesn’t go up as quickly as it used to. I’m going to stat cutting and I want to loose the fat I have on me right now (about 20%) and I’m thinking about doing a 24hour fast 1 day a week while taking BCAA supplement. How much BCAA should I consume during my 24hour fast? I would greatly appreciate the advice!

  18. Johnny Bali

    Andy

    Thank you for your detailed information. I am starting to do IF and I really like it. I need to perform regular cardio to condition for big wave surfing. I really enjoy eating a big breakfast. Is it reasonable to have a feeding window from 8am to 4pm and then train cardio at 6:30pm? Should I be eating after I train cardio to rebuild muscle? I see that you say its not necessary to rush home to eat after training but what about fasting after training? What about strength training? Is it OK to continue to fast after?

  19. Lyle

    Andy at the top of this page is a graph showing at 16hr the body is using 100% FFA for fuel, and I understand the R.Q. Of .7…. However, after thoroughly reading your site and Martin’s site and reading mostly all of Lyle MacDonalds book as well as google searches, the best answer I can come up with as far as research is that the body switches to mobilizing and burning FFA for fuel somewhere between 10 and 30hrs, can you point me to more specific literature, or shed some light on the 16hrs number?

    1. Andy Morgan

      Thanks Lyle (great name), very good question and something I have been meaning to come back to and edit in this article for some time.
      This was one of the first articles that I wrote, so please forgive some of the simplicity of thinking. I can’t remember where I got that reference from specifically, but the graph is meant to signify not an absolute optimal value, just how energy usage changes over time. Also, it’s an article in the context of cardio as a tool for fat loss.

      Even so, the practical reality of the situation is that what we now believe to be true from the studies is the following:

      1. Cardio, regardless of time performed, is unlikely to have any affect on overall fat stores at the end of the day – the energy balance and the macros are way more important.

      2. The exception to the above is in the case of the exceptionally lean individual.

      Background science for those other people reading:
      There is a theoretical limit on how much fat can be oxidised (burned) before the body will fuel itself by breaking down muscle mass. Fatter individuals can afford a greater deficit before this happens than leaner individuals because the body uses fuels in the ratio they are available. – Fat people clearly have their pantry stocked with a lot of butter a little meat, shredded people with just a little butter, a lot of meat.

      The reason for this theoretical limit is mostly due to the limited access that the body has to fat stored beyond a certain level of leanness. This has to do with poorer blood flow (alpha/beta receptor ratio differences, etc. that’s you’ll recall from Lyle’s Stubborn Fat Solution) in some places of the body, which you can check now my placing the palm of your hand on your arse cheek and noting how cold it is compared to the other places of your body. This is why the fat on your booty is one of the last places it shifts from and is why you don’t see anyone walking around with shredded butt cheeks at the beach. Also very handy for some cushion when you sit.

      Fasted cardio may increase the theoretical limit on the amount of fat burning that can take place in a day by providing greater access to the stubborn body fat. Cardio improves blood flow around the body, and doing it when fasted provides hormonally favourable conditions for shifting the stubborn body fat (insulin down, catecholamines up, etc.).

      Does this mean we should all do fasted cardio to get shredded?:
      No for the average individual using the system described on this site. More on that here.

      For those interested in geeking out about some of the things I touched upon then I can think of no better book that Lyle McDonald’s one here.

  20. Kelsey

    Andy,
    Great article!
    I am currently following Mark Sisson’s ideas on the Primal Blueprint, therefore I have been in a state of ketosis for 15 days now (feel as though keto-adapted as well because not eating for 16 hours isn’t hard).

    Just wanted to know your thoughts on macro ratios for IF. Can I keep my 125g fat; 85g protein; 46g carbs that make me feel so good? Or to get lean must I change around? I don’t digest starch too well but I am game for your advice!

    Thanks.

  21. Matteo

    Hi Andy, what kind of cario do you think works better if done in the fasted state? Low intensiy or HIIT? What’s best for fat loss? And what’s dangerous for the catabolism? I don’t think so but for you any BCAA needed?

    Thank you from Italy :)

  22. DD

    I work normal business hours of 8am – 6pm (complete desk job) and try to get to the gym at 7.30pm. After reading a lot of positive reviews on IF, I started to follow it but am not sure on what IF protocol should I follow based on my daily routine? Currently, I’m following the 2 pre-workout meal IF protocol but haven’t seen any noticeable improvement. Just wanted to know if I’m missing out on anything here.

    My routine is –
    Mon -Legs, Shoulders
    Tues- Cardio (interval training on treadmill for 45 mins) and light abs
    Wed – Chest, Triceps
    Thurs – Cardio (interval training on treadmill for 45 mins) and light abs
    Fri – Back, Biceps
    Sat or Sun – Cardio (interval training on treadmill for 45 mins) and light abs

    My problem may be that I don’t count calories or do any sort of macro nutrition calculations which may be leading to no portion control for each meal on my part.

    Please advise on how to go about my diet and workout. I am planning to build lean muscle and rock hard and flat abs and currently my weak area is the midsection.

      1. DD

        Thanks Andy for a prompt response. Do you think I should be dropping cardio completely from my routine or should do it as a post workout exercise for 20 mins, 2-3 times a week?

        Also, what daily IF protocol should I follow for my training time (7.30pm)?

        1. Andy Morgan

          I have just give you a link to read on my thoughts on cardio yet, you come back to me with the same question asking about it. Which means you haven’t read it, or you did and you don’t want to follow my advice on it – which is fine, but forgive me if I don’t see any particular value in answering your further questions.

          1. DD

            Sorry if my question was repetitive. I read the article and understood the fact about cardio. Thank you!!
            Do you think I should drop the 2 body part routine and start working on Big 3 routine three times a week to gain lean muscle mass and overall body fat reduction?

    1. DaCloudMan

      Hi Andy,

      I have read this article and the article you have on when cardio becomes necessary for additional fat lost. I believe I am at the stubborn fat stage and am fighting genetics at this point. I am between 10-11% body fat according to my IF calculator and other sources but still am not showing abs efficiently. I have never been able to cut enough to see good definition, so I am assuming I need to get to 5-6%. My 8 hour feeding window is from noon to 8pm. Would you recommend that I run or do some high intensity cardio a couple times a week in the morning towards the end of my fast to help increase my blood flow and burn some more pure fat as you have mentioned in this article? Or try to stick completely to my compound total body lifts in the gym 3-4 times a week, and reduce my meal portions and cut stricter? Any advice will help.

      1. Andy Morgan

        “I am between 10-11% body fat according to my IF calculator and other sources but still am not showing abs efficiently. “
        You have either calculated your body fat wrong or don’t have enough lean muscle mass to justify cutting if you cannot see your abs by the time you get to 10%. Cutting more is not the answer to looking good.

        1. DaCloudMan

          I may be off a little with my calculations you are right. Let me rephrase a little bit though. I can see them, I know they are there. There is an outline of them but they are clearly not defined as in they have an layer of fat on top of them still that I would like to get rid of. I have developed a good amount of lean muscle over the last 3 months. I am 5’10, and weigh 170 now, my arms and shoulders have gotten huge compared to the skinny boy I used to be. Here are some pics so you can judge a bit better. Last pic is most recent. Seeing these do you think it may be time to bulk now, instead of cutting further?

          http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l70/jonjon_cloud/IMAG1892_zpsf5cf0fd5.jpg

          http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l70/jonjon_cloud/IMAG2003_zpsd57a62a9.jpg

          http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l70/jonjon_cloud/IMAG2093_zpsc6533db9.jpg

          http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l70/jonjon_cloud/IMAG2112_zps2908c490.jpg

            1. DaCloudMan

              My apologies. What is the proper way of submitting such request for training advice?

        2. Brook

          Andy,

          I’m pretty thin but it’s always been more important to me to be lean than big. That said, in the above post you mention someone might not have enough lean muscle mass to justify cutting. When would you say that someone needs to put on some lean muscle before cutting? Is it a certain height to LBM or what? How would I tell that I need to put on lean muscle before cutting?

          thanks for your time.and great site.

          1. Andy Morgan

            Personal judgement, but beware of the tendency for everyone to underestimate just how much fat they carry and thus how skinny they’ll look when lean.

            1. Totalholistic

              I must say that I fell into that ‘trap’. I reduced calories and started to cut. Must admit that I also made the mistake by adding some cardio. I started to lose loads of fat but then the muscle started to twindle as well. Now like most people I am a poor judge of how I actually look physically and it was therefore my wife who had to alert me as to how small I had become.

              This forced me to abandon cardio and up my calories to regain the muscle I lost. Anyway, Andy you are spot on with your advice and comments. You are definitely god-send and I must say that I have learnt a lot from you. And I say that with much humility since I am not exactly a novice when it comes to health, nutrition and related issues. Keep the good work up Andy. The universe will bless you tremendously. I may not comment often but I do follow you and this trend.

  23. Joe

    So, a quick question about the catabolism issue. I’m not sure what constitutes “high intensity” vs “low intensity.” I do cardio for conditioning purposes, running at about a 165bpm heart rate for 30 minutes. This is about 12hours into the fast. Should I be taking BCAAs? Or is this type of cardio safe from catabolism. I don’t feel like I’m exerting myself too much.

  24. Rob

    Hey Andy
    Awesome website. You and Martin Berkham have changed my life. After more than 20 years of lifting and never really getting to a shredded state, IF worked for me. I managed to get down to 8% bf with strength gains and weighing at 180.

    Question: Do you need to cycle IF – 3 months on and s couple off? Being in calorie deficit is a must – yes/no? If in calorie deficit, should I do s refeed once a week?

    1. Andy Morgan

      Hi Rob, thanks for sharing your success. If you have a photo then share a link with us.
      1. No.
      2. A must for further fat loss from here, but if you are 8% then increase your calories steadily to find maintenance.
      3. Re-feeds are every training day.

  25. Emily

    Hi Andy. Thanks for all the great stuff. I came here after a recommendation from my personal trainer. Have been reading thru all the above comments and I’m now totally confused. I know IF is what will get me my weight loss results, but I also do cardio (running) and weights. Running because I just love it, and weights to improve my strength. I have been fasting and working out on the same days, assuming this would be best. My workouts are usually in the morning, so after around 12hrs of fasting. Is this right or does it not make that much difference. I am not calorie counting, only tracking my macronutrients, which is going really well.
    Cheers
    Emily

  26. Adam Lasky

    andy.. two weeks on intermittent fasting now. 2 questins i have. at what point should i see results? and in turn, reaccess my calorie intake. I have lost 3-4 lbs and no strength. also . i fast from 9pm – 1pm. I work out at 7am. i drink bcaas between workout and first meal. I sometimes feel like eating postworkout, based on the old thought process about a timed eating window for best results. Should i disregard that and stick to my ‘if’ schedule? also i am calorie cycling and have been wondering how to figure out the exact carb intake number. is it trial and error? thanks for any help.

  27. John

    Funny, this is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks a lot, Andy. I do have one question regarding the type of cardio. I know that LISS is ideal for fasted state weight loss. I’m going to be going on a very grueling backpacking trip in a few months, and I wish to start training for it now. I believe the most effective way to do so will be to hike a few times a week with weights in my backpack. I plan to hike 3 days a week on rest days, after about 12-14 hours of being fasted. If I hike for about 2 hours, what sort of cardio would this be? Would I be risking catabolism? I suppose I’ll take some BCAAs prior, as my legs will probably be getting a good workout as well. Also, if I’m on a longer hike, at what point should I take another round of intra-workout BCAAs. Will 10g prior to the hike last me several hours? Or should I dose again? I don’t wish to risk muscle catabolism. Thanks Andy.

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