Does Training in a Fasted State Cause Slightly Stubborn Belly Fat?

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I’ve been doing intermittent fasting on and off for almost 20 years now.

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One of the things I like to do is train in a fasted state, right before my first meal.

This is a solid strategy for fat loss.

But…

You risk burning a bit of muscle due to high cortisol levels… especially if the workout is intense.

intense training raises cortisol levels

I actually get more concerned about other effects of high cortisol.

One of the effects of high cortisol is holding onto stubborn BELLY fat, even when the rest of your body is getting slim.

This doesn’t always happen to me, but when I notice this…

I start my day with a small meal.

If I want to train soon after waking up, I’ll drink a low-fat protein and carb shake of 300-400 calories.

The reason for a shake is that it will absorb quickly… this is also why I make it low fat because fat slows absorption.

protein shake before working out

Plus I follow a low fat diet plan anyway.

It doesn’t even have to be a high-protein shake.

Fruit smoothies work well…

…as long as the calories are kept to 300’ish.

This small amount of carbs lower cortisol levels and also get the body out of a catabolic state.

fruit smoothies before workout

The idea is to time your training after the nutrients from the shake are absorbed.

This is called training in the “Post-absorptive State”.

This is kind of the sweet spot for using the calories for fuel.

  • You aren’t digesting these calories.
  • You also aren’t in a fasted state.

I recommend about 300-400 calories.

Your weight training workout should burn through that amount before you begin cardio.

I recommend weight training for 30-45 minutes.

Follow your lifting with 20-45 minutes of some form of cardio.

Woman having cardio training in the gym

Your weight training workout should easily burn through those 300 calories as long as they aren’t still being digested.

By the time you hit cardio… your body will be in a semi-fasted state and it will work well.

I use the still use the same strategy I outline in my cardio course.

cardio intensity for fat loss

I just now try to train in the “Post-absorptive State” when possible.

What I’m finding is that it DOES make a difference as far as belly fat is concerned.

I never worry too much about the muscle loss aspect of fasted cardio.

Resistance training sends a signal to hold onto muscle.

"Visual Impact Kettlebells" - Home Workout Course
A kettlebell course we filmed on the beach in Costa Rica, aimed at helping you get slim and lean without adding bulk.

We all digest food at different rates, so this does take a bit of experimenting.

Does Training in a Fasted State Cause Slightly Stubborn Belly Fat?Does Training in a Fasted State Cause Slightly Stubborn Belly Fat?

Cheers,

-Rusty Moore

As a former fitness coach to fashion models, I can teach you how to increase muscle definition without adding size.

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