Should exercise equal more calories on fast days?

Welcome to The Fast Diet The official Fast forums Fast Exercise Getting fit
Should exercise equal more calories on fast days?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Couscous 10 years, 8 months ago.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

  • On my usual method of dieting, I limit my calories per day to a level that is about 75% of what I am expected to burn without any exercise, just normal baseline level. For me that baseline is about 2,500 – I am a guy who is 6 foot 3 inches and 225 pounds (sorry everyone else in the world who is not in the U.S., I really should use metric, but I am from the U.S. of A.).

    So on days that I do non-nominal amounts of exercise – say I ride a bike for an hour which burns 500 calories – then I get to add 500 calories to my daily total. I use and the site automatically calculates and adjusts the total when you enter the exercise performed that day.

    So it seems logical to me that on fast days, if I exercise, I should add the calories burned to my total so that if I burned 500 calories, I should eat 1,100, instead of 600.

    Any thoughts on that? Is there any kind of consensus or official position on this issue?

    Thanks! – Hank Ace

    Hi HankAce, my short answer to your question is NO. As a result of his research Michael came up with the 500/600 cal consumption per fast day. Nothing was factored in regarding working off a certain no of calories. I am not a medical or fitness expert but I do some excercise on fast and non fast days but do not factor cals burnt on a fast day to enable more fuel to go in.
    Follow Michaels philosophy, 600 in only on fast days and if you work out and burn X no of calories then look at it as a plus in terms of extra cals out not extra cals in. Remember the rule, fasting is about the max input being 600 cals, by all means experiment but remember this is not about weight loss in the first instance. The benefits are what happens inside as a result of only eating 25% of your daily recommended calarie intake.
    Good luck.

    Hi Hank Ace – I would say the opposite, and carry on what you have been doing. I was given the advice to stick to 600 cals come what may on the other forum but if you do not make proper allowance for recovery nutrition during the hour or so after hard exercise you will end up either unable to exercise on consecutive days or will start losing lean tissue as muscles are repaired by using bits of other muscles…
    I managed a 4 hour charity walk on a cup of coffee (at nearly 4mph) and a 32 mile bike ride on another day with just coffee again – yes, I was fine on the day but both took several days to recover from, and the rate of weight loss was too great. I’m in maintenance now, happily, so I put back what I have burned on a daily basis but do the exercise first so as to get some fasting benefit.

    Hope this helps! Feel free to check out the exercise threads on the Other forum…

    Hi CreakyPete and HankAce. I wonder if you have both lost track of the initial idea of the 5:2 fast aims. Remember Michaels initial worries were about inner health, the problems that being over weight brings internally and his resulting ideas following research on an effective way of combating those internal health issues. Weight loss is a welcome secondary result I feel of the 5:2 diet. By all means experiment and find out what works for you as an individual, in fact it is good that you do and also let posters know your results. BUT….. for me and many others it is about the impact on possible life threatening internal health issues that come first and how a calorie restricted diet over two days impacts on those doing this.
    Possibly this is an issue that Michael could comment on. I am aware of the need to maintain muscle mass, protein intake, recovery programmes etc following excercise but the 5:2 internal benefits come first.
    Good luck with your efforts.

    I agree with Couscous. This “diet” is not really about weight loss, it is about giving your body a period of time of Fasting. The benefits come from NOT eating or eating very limited calories over an extended period.

    The beauty of this way of eating is that it is adjustable. Adjust your Fast days so that they don’t fall on the days when you have a huge amount of energy expenditure planned.

    Of course you may do whatever you want if your goal is to lose weight but you won’t reap the real rewards of Fasting if you don’t Fast.

    Good luck with whichever way you choose.


    hi HankAce,

    concerning calories 4 exercise

    i can not find the exact post it might b in this area i think it was in march

    if i remember he does not encourage it because he still wants u 2 let ur body fast. however due to tallness he does recommend c below


    4:25 pm on 27 May 13


    Report this post
    Does being a tall woman (5 foot 11 inches) alter the amount of calories I can have on a fast day? I usually feel dizzy and have headaches. I am taller than many men who will be allowed 600 cal.


    9:53 pm on 27 May 13


    Report this post
    Hi jcrfastdiet, the calorie intake can very reasonably adjusted to 600 calories daily for you given your height, particularly if you are feeling dizzy. Also worth checking that you are drinking enough water as this can also cause dizziness and headaches. Good luck !

    and 4 exercise

    michael discusses this intermittent-fasting-and-exercise

    Click here to join us in our forums to discuss this specific post.

    Couscous – the 500/600 calories set by Michael are entirely arbitrary 25% values of the recommended 2000/2500 calories for the average man/woman – they have not been handed down from the Almighty in tablets of stone.
    Michael did not enjoy fasting with one 600 calorie meal so split his allowance between breakfast and dinner – most of us prefer to get the benefit of a longer fasting period and save all our allowance until dinnertime – but the benefits are supposedly equivalent.
    I go further and suggest that anyone who burns 1500 calories in prolonged exercise will have done the equivalent of 16 -18 hours fasting as regards reducing glycogen levels in muscles & liver and to prevent unnecessary damage a good proportion of this should be replaced promptly.
    I would be interested to hear your ideas for maintenance whilst still sticking to 500/600 calories as I for one cannot afford to lose any more weight (same height as Michael, 134 lbs this morning) but still wish to get the benefits of fasting which we both recognize as being more than just weight loss…

    Hi CreakyPete, thank you for your post. First can I say I am not a medical or fitness expert and my comments are my own based on my own experiences.
    In terms of fasting I agree with your first two paragraphs to a point. We know fasting has been around in various forms for ever. I believe Michael based his 5:2 style after his fasting research suggested “hard core” fasting would not be possible fore the majority of us. As a result the internal medical benefits which come from a vastly reduced calorie intake would be lost.
    It is the calorie intake, or lack of it that seems to be the key in achieving internal health benefits and he did not suggest in his programme that calorie intake can be increased as a result of burning off calories.
    I am interested in how posters like yourself and HankAce exercise and restrict calorie intake. While it may benefit weight loss and muscle development along with other physical benefits Michael did not provide us with evidence that such a combination would provide the same benefits as fasting.
    I am not qualified to give indepth advice as to your last comments other than my own experience following excercise. For maintenance, fast on one day a week or say every 8 – 10 days. Why not use this day as a recovery day in terms of physical exercise and not do any other than say stretching.
    Good luck with your fasting and exercise.

    Hi HankAce, it seems like there is no official position or consensus forthcoming – it looks like we have to make the best of things using common sense. For me it was the length of time between meals that worked the magic of resetting appetite & cutting out snacking, not so much the strict adherence to 600 cal meals (after the first few fasts) and adding more vigorous exercise (note the spelling, couscous!) required that the fast-day dinners were supplemented by lunchtime energy/protein replacements to prevent lean tissue deterioration as described above. I am 62 and only had 15 lbs to lose to get to 10% fat approx. I race every Saturday over 5km and my times improved from my first week of fasting, I am now quicker than 2 years ago despite arthritic hips! PS – give up eating grains/bread etc!!

    Good morning CreakyPete. It is interesting about how fasting has improved your fitness levels, you help confirm the health benefits of diet and fitness. My own fitness levels have also improved as a result of the 5:2 lifestyle but sad for me to say I am no where near yours. I also have 3 years start on you. You have found a method that suits you and your lifestyle. I hope HankAce updates us with his.
    By the way thank you for pointing out the spelling error in my last post, it shows how lazy I am getting as a result of spell check. I also seem to have trouble with other words such as Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch. That little welsh village. Usually I forget is it four l or just three?.
    Good luck with your life and fitness.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

You must be logged in to reply.