What is intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting is a way of dieting used primarily by lazy people who don’t want to wake up and put in the real work! It’s for people who lack enough self-discipline to wake up 20 minutes early and cook breakfast.
It’s for people who don’t want to prepare their meals and usually have constant excuses as to why they cannot follow through with anything!
Does intermittent fasting have ANY PLACE in the bodybuilding world?
Yes, but only if you’re someone who is already in shape and needs to change up their diet to shake things up a little or help reset insulin sensitivity. I’d say this is about 5% of people at any given time.
Does intermittent fasting have its place with people who want to lose fat?
Yes, but only for people who are weak minded and have no other options for restriction other than to allow a specific time window for eating.
I wrote an article awhile back on intermittent fasting and Paleo dieting for results. I don’t want people who may have read that article to get confused here; I do believe there is a time and place to fit intermittent fasting into a diet to jump-start fat loss again, but it’s use to me is limited in most case scenarios.
Almost everyone who is carrying excessive body-fat and can’t seem to lose it for the life of them all have 1 thing in common…
THEY NEVER EAT BREAKFAST!
So what sense does it make to start a diet that continues to follow the same trend that got someone overweight in the first place? I would NEVER, EVER throw intermittent fasting at someone like this!
The first thing I’ll throw their way is a properly balanced breakfast with protein and slow digesting carbs and they’re all going to tell me the same thing; “I feel stuffed, I’m not hungry, I want to vomit, this is too much food for me!”
The real answer is, “No it’s not, you just aren’t used to this because you’ve already been intermittently fasting for the past 10 years!”
Most will do intermittent fasting with meals that aren’t the wisest choices. They’ll refuse to cook and look for easy ways to do it; 5 protein bars a day, McDonald’s without the french fries, a turkey sandwich from the deli that contains nothing but salt and bread, if they think there’s a shortcut they’ll do it.
They’ll do it for about a week until mother nature kicks in and then they’ll go eat a cake when they’re starving and cannot take it anymore.
Then they’ll be back to square 1 and begin the entire process over, all while losing muscle and transforming themselves into smaller pieces of shit rather than larger pieces of shit. But in the end they’ll still be left with shit.
Intermittent fasting is only for morbidly obese people who cannot display any form of self control other than a specific feeding window, or someone who is already in shape and needs to mix things up briefly to burn off just a little bit of fat left.
Most overweight people who train with me lose between 20-30 lbs in 8 weeks and NONE OF THEM do intermittent fasting!
“Wait a minute, that’s what our ancestors did and they weren’t fat.”
Our ancestors also didn’t break down and ride the horse to McDonald’s for a “big and tasty” every 2 days and drink a big gulp of Pepsi!! Our ancestors conserved their energy and only expended it when needed, not routinely lifting weights and doing cardio on top of working and hunting!!
Our ancestors also died about 30-40 years younger from diseases that were largely responsible from weak immune systems and undernourishment. So don’t hand me the ancestor bologna because it’s apples to oranges to me!
Go ask any real bodybuilder how they eat and I promise you almost every one of them eats breakfast! Go research people who pipe about intermittent fasting online and you’ll see mostly wiry looking individuals who are leaner but carry little muscle.
Please let me know when they change the name of BODYBUILDING to “BODY-TAKE AWAY!” This site is about bodybuilding, not a how-to guide on looking like a meth-head!
If your goal is to simply get thin and you’re obese then intermittent fasting may help you lose that first chunk of weight.
If you’re already in great shape and need a way to switch things up a little bit to continue to gain results then intermittent fasting may be a good way to set yourself up for more fat loss or muscle gain.
But this isn’t most people! Most people would benefit much more from cooking those eggs, eating those meals, and busting their tails in the gym!
I know, I know, it’s hard! If you quit everything that was hard you’d be nowhere in life, so why would building a body be any different?
“If It Fits Your Macros” is plain bullshit
IIFYM is a diet that has gained popularity over the past couple of years, and for whatever reason I have no idea. It’s probably due to the lazy generation that society produces now and the thought that eating a bag of popcorn is a good substitute for a potato.
Well I’m here to tell you that the thought of replacing good foods with snack-type garbage and telling yourself it fits into your daily diet is idiotic!
I’m sorry, but there is no way that processed garbage can substitute foods like fish, chicken, rice, oats, potatoes and broccoli!
I keep hearing about people eating Pop Tarts because it fits their macros! For some damn reason pop tarts have become the ultimate replacement food for proper nutrition!
Okay, keep dieting on Pop Tarts and I’ll put you against someone who has busted their ass to prep healthy meals instead, and we’ll see who looks better at the end of the diet.
IIFYM is for the lazy, plain and simple. Now, if you’re talking about replacing one specific meal with another healthy option and you want to call that IIFYM then I’m all for it.
But if you want to eat pop tarts, popcorn, pop rocks, or pop f’in’ secret, and sit there and tell me it’s a good substitute for your diet, then I’m the Pope!
The bottom line is this isn’t easy. Yes, there are certain individuals who are genetically gifted and can get away with more, but hard work always trumps talent!
I know plenty of talented people who live like bums because they have a terrible work ethic! Their talents will destroy the competition when they actually put in work, but they never prevail because they won’t put in enough work!
My brother works with plenty of people in the medical field who all went to Ivy league schools and graduated with honors. They all come to him for advice at work, and do you know why? It’s because his work ethic destroys everyone!
He always arrives an hour early, stays an hour late, and when things in medical school were challenging he was probably putting in 3x the hours studying that everyone else was doing. He’ll be the first one to tell you, “I’m not any smarter than anyone else, I just work hard.”
Ask yourself ,”How hard am I really working at this?” Be honest with yourself because results all start with being honest with yourself. People who are bullshitters also bullshit themselves. I don’t take bullshitters seriously and I can spot them a mile away!
“Well, I was sick for the past 2 weeks so…” SICK FOR 2 WEEKS HUH? I got e coli one time from bad drinking water and it didn’t put me down for more than 4 days!
A runny nose somehow makes people walk like zombies to Golden Coral and dip cotton candy into the chocolate wonderfall in a desperate search for the ultimate cure, all while saying “Screw the gym” for the next 2 weeks… let’s be honest here!
Also, while I’m on the topic, for you young guys out there who talk to women who tell you they can’t meet because they’re sick for over a week…yea, the truth is they can’t meet because they’re waiting for an outbreak to clear up!
So you can try intermittent fasting like everyone else does and you can try IIFYM like everyone else does. If these diets somehow don’t work for you (and they won’t for most of you) and you’d like to really learn how to get results then pick up Straight From the Underground today!
I don’t know about you, but I don’t have time for bullshit… I’d rather put my time into what really works!
Train hard, screw Pop Tarts! -JD
15 thoughts on “Intermittent Fasting and “IIFYM” (If It Fits Your Macros) Explained the JDB Way!”
Thank you. Much needed article. I have a confession. I tried intermittent fasting. What a big mistake I did. I went from eating 5 meals a day to 1-2 meals a day. I lost a lot of muscle despite doing my regular lifting routine. People who saw me bigger were like wtf you losing too much weight. However, I still had my strength. My clothes went from fitted to just hanging. I never should have tried it. Thank for clearing this up and spreading the truth. A lot of YouTube channels are lying to the new generation. Guys there’s no easy way. You have to train and eat at least 5 times a day. Just wanted to throw my 2 cents.
IF is a healthy solution to control insulin resistance, It´s not for losing fat, but it makes you loose as soon you start to get healthier. Eating 5 times a day will crash your liver later
Good article. However, what if someone doesn’t want to look like a huge body builder ?
I don’t. I don’t care about size. I’m already short so, size doesn’t benefit me.
I tried intermittent fasting. It worked. I got ripped. I look better than a body building split or any other crap out there. I can fit into normal shirts and girls didn’t mind touching me and I didn’t either.
I tried your way as well. Bought your book. It worked.
For all of those who want to get his book and want to know it works… it fucking works. My chest blew up with all secret tenchinques most idiots don’t bother telling you.
Nothing against you and your rant on fasting. Just keep in mind, if you have game and other things in your life in order…no one gives a crap how big you are, except yourself.
When I go to the gym I see huge massive guys, who think muscles will magically help them in all areas of life. I use to be one of them.
Sure it helps, to a point. Definitely doesn’t help with girls tho unless you have good game.
I would like to see a program from you that helps those people who don’t want to be a big mean gorilla giant. Just lean and mean with strength and some visual pop.
For all you guys who think muscles will get your girls or fame and that’s why your working out…. your wasting your time… girls don’t care period, unless she’s a body builder.
And if you want be admired by another man… there’s something wrong with you, if your straight.
Idk bro. I’m short too. I put on some size. I’m 10 lbs from being obese for my height and still have abs. Girls definitely like me more than when was 35 lbs lighter.
nice article john,
please let the reader know when the books will be available , i have bought only “straight from the underground”
i am curious about other books as well.
The only problem with IIFYM is that there are a lot of people who believe you can eat junk food or whatever you want “if it fits your macros” but the real deal with macro counting is eating the staple meals made up of lean protein and complex carbs but being able to fit in something else you could be craving alleviating the psychological stress of a prolonged calorie restricted diet, reducing binging, and making normal, every day life AND dieting sustainable. A person can’t be expected to eat 5oz chicken, couple cups of rice, broccoli, or whatever 6x a day every single day for the rest of their lives if they want to be “fit” and perform well in the gym. IIFYM can allow for flexibility in a daily life WITHOUT derailing or stalling progress. Instead of consuming a fun size Snickers in ADDITION to your 6 meals, you’d be consuming it INSTEAD of x amount of your rice and fats, or whatever you’re eating.
There is a time and place for IIFYM and there is a time and place for strict dieting. Some people adhere better to a strict diet and freedom can lead to binging etc in some individuals. Strict dieting is likely better, for some just as good as macro counting, when trying to achieve fat loss.
Many athletes, amateur, pro, natural, not natural, use the macro approach successfully. The idea that you HAVE to consume chicken, rice and broccoli only on a daily basis to see results is a dying old school belief.
As far as intermittent fasting goes, it’s really something you have 2 tread lightly with. A few few years ago, I experimented w IF by having a late Sunday night meal, and then not eating the next meal until Tuesday morning. (All in all, about 34-36 hours in a fasted state.) Energy levels were good and I experienced no drop off in strength during Monday night workout. The hardest part was working/training w no meal to look forward to at night. However, I do believe it to be a great exercise in will power ever now and then, say 3-4x’s a year.
Recently, just tried a 3-day water only fast. Lemme be the first to tell you, I do not recommend doing this. I think I went 84 hours w/o food, and man, some weird things start happening to the body on day 3. Rubbery legs, dizziness, heart palpitations, just to name a few. Also, strength levels were down considerably compared to my regular numbers. The only way I could see doing this is if u had a deadline coming up (wedding, spring break, etc.) , in your 20’s, and needed to trim down in record time. Even then though, the better option is to plan it out ahead of time. Over 40, I wouldn’t recommend it. Just too many things too deal w that aren’t worth it.
What is most amazing to me is that though knowledgeable in many regards you speak this way about intermittent fasting. I will not argue hard work but let’s apply your Rambo hard work and discipline to a job etc. most people work hard and are broke. So hard work in anything is not a key to success , though you and many who fail to see the bigger picture. I am sure you look like Adonis ur you have a fixed idea of what it takes to succeed in wellness, and all fixed ideas are small. Many are impressed by your knowledge but it does not scale for most. Intermittent fasting is a good option when combined with hormone replacement and a decent training regimen. No one need to be cultishly serious to succeed u just sell it that way and most are afraid to tell u. You are good but would be better d we all know that making things more balanced is a better way to have a broader and lasting impact. If 3 meals a day works use that , if fasting works use that , if 5 meals work use that . Our species by its continual limitation of my way or nothing else continues to get in its own way of progress by shutting out what can be useful because we don’t like it.
I wish u well
The point about not eating breakfast couldn’t be more true. My dad never eats breakfast and he never believes me when I tell him it would help him LOSE weight to eat in the morning. I will say though that i tried intermittent fasting–it was alright but i prefer the more traditional dieting with a solid caloric restriction of 200-300 calories.
You definitely pointed out some weaknesses people could latch onto in these diets.
Personally, I am very fond of principles found in things like IIFYM and especially IF. Ever 4-6 months or so, depending on what’s relevent to my goals, I like to switch up dieting principles.
Bulking, I’ll track everything and of course stay to mostly healthy foods, but on occasion use IIFYM principles to all a treat to fit it.
Maintaining weight, whichever principles allow me the most mental focus (seem easiest) to focus on my current goals (such as strength).
Cutting, I may do tracking/weighing and after 6 months transition more to IF and this whole time possibly doing keto as well.
There are examples of well muscled individuals who use IF, but to my knowledge I think they use that to maintain their lean and didn’t build their bulk on IF. I see it as an excellent tool with useful principles IF USED PROPERLY!
Your example above with someone who wants to use that as an excuse to not cook and goes get fast food and can’t deal with hunger pangs is someone who hasn’t learned to use it. IIFYM and IF still shouldn’t be devoid of proper food, that’s just a failure of the person.
I will try switching it up like you said when cutting. For bulking i normally let myself have a lot of freedom as I am training a lot harder
Couldn’t disagree more with your article. Saying that Intermittent Fasting is for lazy people sounds like something that would be written by someone who themselves were too lazy to actually put their body through IF and see the benefits. Because if you had, you wouldn’t have written what you did. Nothing burns fat faster and provides you with energy more than IF. Period. Not even a discussion.
Hey John, love your blog, have bought all your books but I gotta disagree with you on this one. I’ve been IFing for 5 years and I’ve never had a problem with it. The problem that the idiots who IF run into is that they don’t eat enough fuckin food. I eat 3 meals in a 6 hour period totaling 2500 calories and I make sure I eat that everyday. I’ve seen morons IF and they eat 3 eggs and some oatmeal one time a day and then they complain they’re losing muscle when they’re actually just starving themselves.
I’m 6’3″, 255lbs with around 12-15% bf (I also have fucked off to junk food central for a bit over the past month)
My muscle retention and strength retention is amazing.
IF, if done right can save your ass in caloric restriction and make it way easier to work a busy lifestyle into it. But you have to fucking lift. Most retards I see doing IF don’t push themselves in the gym, they’re lazy fucks and they’ll always be lazy fucks.
Keep up the good work John.
Lol do wear a pink apron and a G-string while “cooking” and “meal prepping” you oversized sissy!
I don’t understand how a person weighing food and putting it in boxes can have respect for himself and believe he’s tough!!
Probably the reason bodybuilders brains turn to this irritable sissy mode is squatting and activation of some bitch progesterone receptor by things like nandrolones. I don’t give a shit if a guy puts 7 plates on each side of the barbell, squatting is still a feminine thing. Reverse cow girl😉
FYI 80% of people over 30 have already developed obvious signs of the metabolic syndrome and cannot tolerate breakfast. They’d lose energy and would want to go back to sleep.
Rice is nothing more than boring tasteless glucose powder and when adding a digestive enzyme supplement, consuming rice becomes exactly like consuming glucose w/o the sweetness.
“Hard work” and “cooking” do not fit in the same sentence bro (I mean sis) unless you’re a chef at a restaurant working long hours.
Congrats on your life changing decision to avoid rice and meal prep, thanks for reading!