Who is doing TRF?

Discussion in 'Dieting / Supplement Discussion' started by esdoornblad, Jan 21, 2020.

  1. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Anybody here eat according to a TRF protocol? 16-8, 18-6, 20-4? I'm interested to hear personal experiences or if people have tried very aggressive windows like 22-2.

    TRF = time restricted feeding
     
  2. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    Yes, I've experimented with various TRF and IF protocols over the years; all of the above plus occasional multi-day fasts, weekly 36 hour fasts etc.

    I can't tell you which would work best for you (everyone's different). What I will say though is that hunger hormones like ghrelin get trained pretty quickly (which is one of the keys to TRF); so if you break your fast at around the same time every day, and you're able to comfortably eat what you need to in a given time window then it's pretty straightforward.*

    *This is why 22-2 is tough for many people; it's difficult to eat 2500 calories of whole foods in 2 hours (for example). It can also be more restrictive socially/familially.
     
  3. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Thanks for the response.

    I have been doing something like 18-6 for about a year, but it has been sloppy and many days I've had a small snack in the afternoon. Now I have shifted to strict TRF and am trying to manage 19-5 on weekdays. It does annoy my wife although she doesn't complain about it too much. I do agree that it gets reasonably easy to stick to a schedule once you tough out that schedule for a week or two and, as you say, reset your ghrelin response.

    What I have found is that just that little snack is problematic. My body seems to remember even that small snack. I have been strict for about 2 or 3 weeks now and the afternoon-snack craving has vanished.

    The other common challenge for people seems to be what they drink during the fast. I nurse a large coffee with a small amount of heavy cream (zero protein/carbs) over the course of the day. Coffee appears to raise ketones, even with some fat added, but that is a different can of worms.
     
  4. Blake_UK Orange Belt

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    I am a big fan, I do 18/6 or 19/5.

    I find it actually isn’t hard after a week or so of adjustment as long as you don’t start too early in the day (as you end up feeling hungry before bed).

    The only limitation I have found is that if I try to go too low on the calories I get
    hungry and my performance drops, but for maintaining/steady cutting its great.
     
  5. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Yeah, some days I do not get enough calories but this may not be a bad thing. My priority in the past has always been performance but now it is primarily cutting and fat loss (although I'm not fat by any means).

    Interesting you mention timing. I am doing late TRF which has been criticized in the past, although new research is showing that ultimately the timing doesn't matter once your eating pattern stabilizes. Also it is more likely that our ancient ancestors did late TRF than early TRF
    <Y2JSmirk>
     
  6. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    Do you mean the small afternoon snack was before or after your usual feeding window? I eat late but some have their eating window early.

    I've done TRF for around 7 years. Last year was typically 17/7 ish (up to 22/2 occasionally) with a 36hr fast once a week (nearly every week). I drink black coffee early morning and then water with some Stevia flavour drops throughout the day. This does mean around 1-2g of carbs in my fasting window but it means I drink more water and feel much better for it; it doesn't have an impact on my appetite.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2020
  7. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    Just seen this, my post did something weird so didn't before.

    Yeah, ghrelin will train to your afternoon snack.
    Some recent research has indicated that early TRF maybe theoretically better due to our circadian rhythm and related cortisol levels; it wouldn't suit me personally though.
     
  8. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    The snack was at about 3pm whereas my eating window is usually 6pm-11:00. I sleep from about 1am to 8am. I am impressed with the 36hr fast ... once a week!

    You were definitely an early adopter of TRF.
     
  9. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Yes, I have seen the claims about connection to circadian rhythm but I remain skeptical. Certain claims regarding the superiority of early TRF are being refuted. If I remember correctly, newer research indicates that there are problems with late TRF for test subjects used to eating breakfast. Once morning calories have stopped for a sufficient amount of time, these problems go away. This makes intuitive sense to me. Even as a kid I never ate breakfast, so, like you, early TRF would not suit me at all.
     
  10. wufabufa Silver Belt

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    I usually do it if I'm attempting to lose weight. That compressed eating window really makes it tough to get a lot of calories so it's much easier to use it as a tool for fat loss. Once a month or so I dive into a 24 hour fast just to give my body a break from food. And if you're up on the latest science regarding autophagy then it can be a pretty healthy thing.

    At baseline I don't have a crazy appetite so if I've been doing a lot of exercise or I'm trying to put a little weight on then I eat whenever I'm hungry.
     
  11. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    It was in this sub-forum I first heard about it actually; well IF, TRF as an acronym has only been recently popularised. A post on here pointed me in the direction of leangains.com

    The 36 hour fasts are great when you get used to them; I feel at my best for the last 6 or so hours (and then very hungry). Longest I've gone is 72 hours, I'll likely try a 5-7 day one later this year.
    Yeah, it's early days with all IF research, and as you say, lots of problems with the studies looking at timing of eating windows.
     
  12. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    Upregulation of autophagy is one of the main reasons for my regular 36 hour fasts. It's also around the time it takes for most people's liver to burn through it's stores of glycogen which is useful for other reasons.
     
  13. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Thanks for the reply. Yes, I understand the basis of the autophagy arguments.

    I like your point about eating when hungry. I have always regarded significant caloric restriction as a no-no but like you don't have a crazy appetite. So TRF seems like a natural eating pattern. Frankly I really enjoy the idea of unrestricted eating in the TRF time window. And like you say, because it's tough to get a lot of calories in the small window, overeating is unlikely.
     
  14. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    I really appreciate your feedback. Thanks.
     
  15. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    You're welcome. IF/TRF has definitely been one of the most positive things I've done for my health/wellbeing.

    Just to be clear by "at my best", I mean better than usual; my thinking's very clear, hearing seems better etc. The only problem is I often don't sleep as long on those fast days but that doesn't seem to be too much of a problem; it certainly doesn't have the impact it would on a 'normal' day.
     
  16. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    I would assume that you have the same experience as I do when mentioning an extended fasting period (which probably means anything longer than 12 hours): "I would be starving and cranky". There seems to be disbelief that over time you will actually feel very good -- "clear" as you say -- in the fasting period. In fact I think the opposite happens. If you are used to TRF, eating a large meal inside your normal fasting window will make you feel bloated and slow.
     
  17. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    Yeah, it's too out there for most people; I don't start conversations about it but friends, family etc. know I do it, and some ask and are interested; a few people have/are experimenting themselves and ask advice etc.
    My wife has a long term illness and she did a nine day fast in the hope it would help; it did have benefits, a number of which persisted but she hated doing it!
     
  18. monkeyrhythm Blue Belt

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    If you're a reader Martin Berkhan's book's good, also The Obesity Code by Jason Fung

    *Martin's book doesn't push TRF as much as you may expect though, simply as a tool which can be helpful to some people.
     
  19. esdoornblad How soon is now?

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    Thanks!
     
  20. Blake_UK Orange Belt

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    I have done 24hr fasts on Sunday in the past for this reason.

    I usually eat 3-8pm - this works around my day (with fasted cardio 7-8am) and only have black coffee, green tea and water throughout the day.

    I found a really good schedule was:

    Monday-Friday 3pm-8pm
    Saturday eat anything (within reason)
    Sunday breakfast then nothing until 3pm Monday.

    Really sold on the health benefits, feel much lighter, didn’t get any bloating or digestion issues (like with keto). No brain fog either.
     

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