Reconstitute & Marinating TVP (Textured Vegetable Proteins): 4 methods.

Prepping & marinating TVP : 5 methods.

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In my previous write up I was increasingly left without a choice – resorting back to use TVP once again into my diet. Despite its’ nearing two years of dry storage expiration date I’ve decided to write up a series of methods on how to prepare & marinate them towards basic feature meals.

But…Why I am still eating this?

Good question. Who would dare eating dried, wholefood-like products  beyond its expiry date?

My intent to intermittently revert back to my Keto Quasi-Vegan day/s is not out of mere “ethical” or “emotional” or “moral” choice. But rather – a reason being so structurally constricted – as that of Involuntary Martyrdom. Involuntary; as in beyond my will nor consent. Martyrdom; as in willingness to die for or from – something of our own convictions or inactions.

Regardless – I remain compelled to share anything I consider as pragmatic contingencies, should or IF – my fate coincides others towards worsening access to more optimal resources.

TVP seems so far the only pragmatic contingency plan as food substitute. Although my opinion still stands unchanged in recent years – I do not recommend TVP for prolonged consumption to REPLACE meat proteins. I do not care for whatever external convictions (or should I say coercions) from vegan journals, bloggers, food-activist SJWs, and/or even meta analysis, peer-reviewed journals, etc indoctrinating me that this is “complete moral source of animal substitute proteins”.

My nutritive needs and physiology – unfortunately does NOT agree to this consistently on all contexts. I am sorry.

To be fair and just towards all food “-isms” – this article shares various methodologies to help reduce the excess “processed” aroma and palate whom many are familiar with such meat replacement products.

Further also to a degree (though not completely) helps eradicate the adverse, accumulative side effects of TVP consumption as I wrote in my book. 

I could try “donating” it as perishable foods, but I’d be sued to the court for food poisoning. Nobody from Salvo’s or Good Sammys be willingly dignified to hand out 2-years expired food products. Yet alone them knowing how to prep it.

A decision thus hangs in the balance between keeping a roof over my head or paying another entity called “Lawyers” for likely leaving me nothing but a cardboard box. Between this, lies an alternative food source; half of its supply already dismissed (discarded due to its expiry), and another half awaiting its fate despite its obsolescence.

Hence, my pride swallowed, head down – I gave it another go and resort my life to it once again.

 

Double reconstitution + strain.

Before we get to see all the marinating options, all reconstitution steps must be followed as below.

Reconstitute & Marinating TVP (Textured Vegetable Proteins): 4 methods.

1/2 Weigh, and pour in boiling water
Firstly, weigh together 60 grams (g) of dried TVP granules / originally dried chunks. Bring the kettle to a boil. And pour over on it all just until covers enough to submerge the TVP. More water may constitute greater volume, but this only brings water content not nutritional content. Then leave it to stand, allowing the granules to soak up hence “reconstituted” to approximately 40-50% increased in overall yield size.

That first step is, accordingly to the USA food emergency supply – is all that it takes to prep TVP – theoretically ready to eat within five to eight minutes. The overall 60 grams should more or less result in about 230 grams of initial reconstituted size. However this gives off a notoriously-processed palate & after-taste which I simply do not recommend. We’ll take it few steps further by straining it further with boiling water again.

Reconstitute & Marinating TVP (Textured Vegetable Proteins): 4 methods.

2/2 Strain with boiling water
Using spoon and mesh strain – push down squeezing out as much water as possible. You do not need to be doing any more than few push downs. From about two to three minutes of draining – the final weight from 220 grams of reconstituted size should be reduced to anywhere between 180 to 200 grams.

Now then, the fun begins. Choose your options from hereonward before fridging them for the marinating process (at least few hours or overnight).


Method #1 Milk & Yoghurt

Pour in just enough milk (full cream please) about 60-80ML amount. Add in a teaspoon full of yoghurt. Mix in your spice seasoning (my one year old – bulk bought Kakulas’ lemon peppers seasoning works wonders). Why milk and yoghurt? I am somewhat inspired by various post/s drenching chicken livers in milk. I have no idea whether this alter the nutritional macros. But at least it helps quell that lingering, “processed” taste.

I would not recommend however in combining Apple Cider Vinegar with the yoghurt as the acids may be detriment to the good bacterial composition during marinating.

Method #2 Minced Garlic + Soy sauce

When you’ve run out of milk after your refeed days or that you’ve used it all up during post workout shakes during HC or LC+IF – soy sauce remains a viable option. The challenge here is cost and choice of brand – Kikkoman convinced me as the first “benchmark” for all soy sauce, although Yamasa’s Japanese style comes close as second, then “Pearl River” dark soy sauce as third (however it does contains bit of carbs per 20ML). Alas, Pearl River is the most affordable of all three. For as long as the label bears no added MSG (disguised as flavour enhancers #600 series), nor added synthetic colouring (TVP is already artifically-coloured) – then you’re good to go.

Add a tablespoon of soy sauce alongside with ginger or minced garlic (watch out for carbs though)  to the reconstituted TVP. After marinating you can certainly then heat this towards any meals. Beware however, that the longer you marinate using soy sauce – the sharper its saltiness will result. Hence, my experience suggests when things are marinated-too-long this way – it may be too strong tasting to the point of tasting nothing but very salty chunks of faux meat. Not so palatable.

Reconstitute & Marinating TVP (Textured Vegetable Proteins): 4 methods.

Method #3 Apple Cider Vinegar / turmeric

If there’s no milk, no soy sauce, or no stocks – consider Apple Cider Vinegar. For year/s – ALDI® ACV convinced me as my go to brand @ $3.30 for 500ML for every 3.25 weeks supply. Spoon through one tablespoon amount and marinate as is.

I recommend marinating this no longer than few hours before serving or otherwise it just plainly stank of sour pungentness, to avoid excess pungentness & that vinegarish palate -I’d wager you could try turmeric (more affordable), or rosemary, basil and/or oregano to help quell it to some degree

Method #4 Coconut Cream

This works well if combined with minced garlic and soy sauce. Coconut cream is both a versatile and affordable source of saturated fats in place of sadly inflated price of common butter. I’d personally avoid budget Coles® branded 90 cent coconut creams as that is laden with all sorts of thickeners disguised in synthetic laboratory code/s. Instead go for Woolworths® same priced as it contains nothing but 80% coconut extract + water.

I would not waste my time with coconut milk. It is simply not enough fat to justify its use towards any cooking. A sad industrial failure of modern food production.

Simply pour through up to two tablespoon of coconut cream after the above reconstitution alongside with soy sauce or just additional spices, and let marinate in fridge for up to few hours. Beware however, that most coconut creams by themselves will go off in the fridge within six days cold storage (though it can be prolonged via freezing). Hence be sure if you are marinating with coconut cream it is well within this six day ideal period window of consumption.

Method #5 : make it a part of baked meat loaf recipe

Similarly as per the Pea Protein meat loaf – you could try baking it with pea proteins (if they’re in short supply too). Of all the methods – this one I believe is the best so far due to the Pea Protein’s neutralising flavour, even if mixed in ratio towards TVP dominant. The downside is obviously its resource-intensive demands (pea protein isolates, various condiments, spray oils, and most importantly – precious eggs).

Instead of using 60g of pea protein isolates all at once; try splitting into two halves. 30g pea protein isolates and 30g dry TVP. Reconstitute the TVP as per to the earlier described instructions.  Then add the remaining ingredients (2 eggs, tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, minced garlic, turmeric, 2x finger pinch each amounts of baking soda and cream of tartar)  to the food processor. Blend until thick sludge-like consistency.

Bake in a 190 deg c’ preheated oven for 30 minutes on a small baking tray (with cut baking sheet resting inside) sprayed with a non-gmo canola spray. Check via knife poke test and cook for another 15 mins on 100 degrees. Once done, knife along the edges, gently tip it out, cool for bit, serve or store.  Macros are more or less the same to that if you’re using straight pea protein isolates.

Reconstitute & Marinating TVP (Textured Vegetable Proteins): 4 methods.

So now that your needs for prepping and marinating is done. Let’s remind ourselves on discussing what TVP actually is.

Firstly, what is “TVP”?

For me to remain humbling for not copying off what the Internet already knows – I’d invite you to read Evolving Wellness’ post (by Evitta Ochel). From top to bottom. Do not skim. Decide and determine whether eating TVP feels “right” for you. Whatever image compels in your head from discerning “Textured” + “Vegetable / Soy Proteins” – safe for me to say, you are more or less correct.

Now the next part of this question comes to”where or how should I get them”. The answer is thankfully, a lot more feasible especially if you live in Perth, Western Australia. If not, I’d encourage you to scout major wholefoods establishment stores (here we have Kakulas sisters / bros) anywhere surrounding your suburbs. Sports and natural health food stores may also help you to find local sources or grocers distributors.

One thing to note however – that they are at times labelled differently. Sometimes “Total”  as opposed to “Textured”. They may also be labelled as T-S-P (textured SOY protein). In Perth Western Australia – Kakulas Sisters® grocers label them as “Total” but everywhere else, including an online grocer store 2 Brother’s Foods / aka “The Postal Almond” =  it remains officially labelled as “Textured”. But within the actual brand’s product sheet I courteously requested back in 2016 – it is described as Textured SOY Protein.

Macro composition.

TVP is mostly macro-divided into 50/35/15 ratios – protein first, then fibre and then the effective net carbohydrates. It is virtually free of fats although counted as 1 gram per out of 100 grams of uncooked, dry weight.

Below are tables for 100 grams dry, uncooked, unreconstituted weight. What I have used (2 Brothers’ Foods) alongside with the product specification sheet (kindly provided upon request) seems very identical to Bob Mill’s in terms of protein content and dietary fibre, except the 2 brother foods carry slightly more carbs (33 grams per 100g) yet interestingly less sugar (7.8 grams per 100g) and slightly less overall calories (-16 cals).

Bob Mill’s TVP Granules (Via MyFitnessPal, confirmed by 20 users)
Calories 333 Sodium 8 mg
Total Fat 0 g Potassium 2,475 mg
Saturated 0 g Total Carbs 29 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 17 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 13 g
Trans 0 g Protein 50 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Vitamin A 0% Calcium 33%
Vitamin C 0% Iron 63%
2 Brother Foods’ TVP (branded as “Ben Furney Flour Mills” – Caramel Medium TVP)
Calories 316 Sodium 15 mg
Total Fat 1 g Potassium  Undisclosed
Saturated 0.1 g Total Carbs 33 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 17.5 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 7.8 g
Trans 0 g Protein 50 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Vitamin A Undisclosed Calcium  Undisclosed
Vitamin C Undisclosed Iron  Undisclosed

Each 60g batch as perusing the above reconstitution methods equates to two servings. Each serving (about 90-100g final constituted weight) equates to 90 to 100 calories, 15 grams of protein, 8 grams of carbohydrates but 5 of which is fibre.

Yup, I know what you are all thinking. “2,475MG of potassium! This could be the new spinach!”,.. Not so fast.

Whilst no doubt I agree that potassium is a critical mineral next to magnesium, beware however that too much is just as dangerousy confusing – as being deficient produces the same side effects. From heart palpitations, tightness, etc. Further reading is advisable especially if you live with / amongst those prone to kidney problems or prior history of heart complications.

Cost & Pricing.

Here in Perth, Western Australia – TVP is priced between $5.50 to $7 per kilogram. One kilogram of TVP equates to anywhere between 25 to 30 serves yield. Each 30g (dry unreconstituted weight) serve would thus cost on average 20 cents each.

The recognisable brand (Bob’s Mills) however, in my opinion – is still poorly accessible and excessively cost-inflated. Hence, it would perhaps be advisable to stick to buying it outright yourself from a reputable wholefoods grocer store or order it through 2brothers foods.

No, I am not sponsored, nor paid or endorsed; should anyone suspecting me as a shill to work for any of these brands.

Regardless my point still stands whereby I urge everyone once again to only consider all of the above – as  a last resort for nutritive persistence.

But never – as relaxed indulgence.


My methods known so far in prepping and marinating TVP thus concludes. Do you have any others you wish to add? Please comment down below!
What I actually eat (Cyclical Intermittent Fasting edition)

What I actually eat (Cyclical Interm/Fasting edition) $25-$35 p/wk

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I hereby readily admit that I am “insane”; at times over-acknowledging – that I feel thus exemplarily towards such an admission. From $25 budget/s, reconstituting my two-years expired TVP, two hours of volume training, and up to 20 hour fasting window/s.

Rinse & repeat five days per week. Welcome to Resilience 2.0.

How much can you buy out of $25-$35?

In short – not a lot of food.

In fact, I seriously doubt that persisting on $25 per weeks- for multiple / 4+ weeks at a time is ever conducive towards maintaining overall objective fitness meritocracies. Unless replenished with a higher budget via no more than $35 once every three or four weeks; then THAT in my opinion – potentiates a more viable, pragmatic possibility. 

The last five months have forced me to tinker inbetween LONGER periods within Keto+IF than HC+IF to see if the above budgets are possible WITH some opportunistic hypercaloric refeed periods . I still adamantly believes that despite witnessing my own training and fitness decrements – Keto/LC + IF still what makes reduced calorie consumptions possible.

Recalling way back to my $20-$25 Keto Pescan-Vegan intervention in 2016; would I condone this to be repeated all over again? I’d say comparatively to where I am now – most likely no. 

Irrespective either HC or Keto IF = I hereby declare this new nutritional intervention – “Cyclical Intermittent Fasting” to be marginally possible for maintaining fitness resilience. Given the slightly higher weekly budget of $25 for several weeks strict, followed by $35 replenishment once every three or four weeks.

I call it a “Cyclical” form of Intermittent Fasting; as a deficit principle suggesting five days of 16-18 hour fasted, 6-7 hours of feeding window within CONSISTENT caloric deficits of no more than 25% off maintenance. But still allowing surplus 48 hour refeeds allocated in the weekend to mimic the hormonal re-adaptations similar to CKD principles.

What I actually eat (Intermittent Fasting edition+refeeds) $25-$35 p/wk

So how much can we buy out of this? An initial first week of expenditure for seven days of consumption = $30.50* are as follows; across up two hours of shopping, up to four different outlets.

  1. 500g economy beef mince = $3
    (be sure to strain and drain away the excess polyunsats after cooking with boiling water). 
  2. 2x sardines in springwater = $1.20
  3. English spinach 1 bundle if I’m lucky = $0.70
  4. 1/2 cauliflower shortdated if I’m lucky = $0.50
  5. 1kg of carrots = 50c.
    NOTE to all o f you Keto-Talibans out there trotting your pitchforks out – read my thoughts below.
  6. Just one carton of 600g egg = $2 (700g if I’m lucky)
  7. 3L full cream milk = $3
  8. 500ml olive oil (or 500g of matured cheese block) = $4
  9. 1kg full fat yoghurt = $3.5
  10. at least 350g worth of Mayonnaise or mustard = $2
  11. Up to 500ML Dark or light soy sauce (watch the carb content) = $2
  12. FOR REFEED – 900g oats = $1.30
  13. FOR REFEED – 400g rice puff cereals  = $2
  14. FOR REFEED – 1kg white rice  = $1.40
  15. FOR REFEED – 4kg of potatoes = $1.50 if I’m lucky
  16. FOR REFEED – 500g pasta = $0.65c
  17. Condiments = tomato paste = $1.25
*(this can be lowered down to $25 – $26 upon next week’s actual spending amount; as refeed carbohydrates and condiments can be saved for next week’s consumption there after) 

As you can see that is not a lot of food. This equates up to only roughly 1400-1500 (food only) calories per day for five days. Of course that depends on which nutritional macros (keto or standard high carb). And that for refeed periods – you will most certainly be reliant on supplementary proteins (not included in the budget) to make up for any lack of carbohydrate supplies.

Go read my previous recipe/s here, here and here (all three utilising supplementary protein powders as contributing main food resources) so that you can work out in your head as to how much more is required. Sooner or later you’d realise – alongside with my very own apology – that things are a lot tougher than what is suggestive here. In my case whenever those run out, I am left with my two years (yes two) expired TVP / Textured Vegetable Proteins. Yes, what was once my previously long forgotten and sub-optimal food “substitute”; now returns to the spotlight once again.

Sample outlook – Weekdays.

AM (both KETO & HC+IF)

We’ll begin with breakfast….nothing!

Well almost. I’ve decided that intakes of Vitamin D must still be taken seriously. In one way or another. So when or how would this best be approached?

Simple, begin the day with up to four fish oils and up to 5x Vitamin D; chugged down in water with MSM / organic sulfur; – to help bone-level GH hormone homeostasis and for everyday mobility.

“What? This is utter fasting heresy! Die, traitor!” , Says the Fasting-Taliban/s. [pitchforks out].

As much as I feel somewhat ambivalent on MEGA intakes of Vitamin D, as well as against beliefs on abstaining from it altogether; due to spread fear mongering about calcium leeching, or kidney failures from overdosing, etc, whatever the case may be – some intakes ARE STILL needed. The question is, when or how? I can’t take it in the evening. On the basis of personal experiences for many years – that Vitamin D at night seriously impairs my sleep.

The only pragmatic way therefore is to take it in the morning….Even then here’s another dilemma, Vitamin D is useless without any fat intakes. So what else can I do? I can’t just guzzle down coconut oil or MCTs – because I am not training so soon in the morning. So the only pragmatic way of utilising it? Fish oil.

Pitch forks down. For pragmatism sake. It’s 40 calories from here onwards until evening.

All afternoons (both KETO & HC IF)

Warm apple cider vinegars, pinch of bicarb soda and knife edge amount of cream of tartar to help bring up potassium levels.

Besides from that, coffees and/or teas. As simply dark as pitch black. I recently have been realising that not all instant coffees are the same.  I found myself mixing inbetween one with the other just to get that chocolatey aroma. And as usual – ALCAR still remains, under my opinion only – still an essential supplement to add to the coffees (up to 1.5g used) to help maintain cognitive alertness away from depression + anxiety. And in some cases – some warmth especially now during winters.

About up to three cups of coffee in total (or four if my day starts early). The fourth / last cup  counts towards my preworkout training aid as explained below.

Breakfast! Preworkout @ 5:30/ 5:45PM (both KETO & HC IF)

Either my usual BCAAs (if unflavoured – mix with sugar free lemonade)  or tinkering to my long-lost forgotten paradigm – Targeted Ketogenic preworkout liquid meal of no more than 25g of carbos.

This TKD approach however, requires more resources. I mix 150ml of reduced fat milk, some more water, 16g of dextrose powder, 2 grams of creatine monohydrate and 10 grams of unflavoured whey protein or pea protein powder supply.

Why adding protein? I know that given from my last write up – eating enough calories within short-er feeding window will prove difficult. Further, I still to this day do not have a voracious appetite even after knee-bleedingly painful 300 rep lower leg workout session.

What if it’s a rest day (Wednesday)?

On Wednesdays, I prolong my fast up to eighteen nineteen (19) hours. My hunger seems more pronounced when I am not training hence I try to eat more close to maintenance as attempts (2000-2100 calories) if resources allow for it.

I’ve written this before and I’ll say it again, it makes NO conducive, evolutionary purpose to eat on caloric surplus if you are not physiologically hungry. I am far more PRIMALLY compelled to SAVE RESOURCES if I am not hungry; especially after training. Disagree? Good. You have something for your-selves to stand for.  Keep believing what works for you.

So at no later than fifteen minutes past eight PM – I drink a 35g powder worth of protein supply (mixed unflavoured + flavoured whey / peas) with 150ML worth of full cream milk with more water. To fill time from now on till dinner I simply made another round of warm apple cider vinegars drink with sparkling water, with liquid stevia on top and vanilla essence.

Postworkout – 8PM (both KETO & HC IF)

Up to 45g of mixed unflavoured + flavoured whey / pea protein supply with copious amount of liquid stevia or monk fruit powder.  On 200ML reduced fat milk or 100ML full cream milk. Equates anywhere between 30-40g of protein content.

On Many days without milk – I resort to use yoghurt + water. Taste okay actually.

One thing I’d note however – IT MUST BE FULL FAT yoghurt. Though if I have no choice, fat-free phobiasque brethen would do albeit without much taste or rewarding substance.

Dinner – 9:15 / 9:40PM

KETO / LC + IF

First proper meal, horray. Two boiled eggs, 100g to 300g worth of vegetable fresh weighted content, 100 to 120g of weighted meat protein content (not a lot unfortunately), 15ML of olive oils or 30g worth of butter or 60ML of coconut cream, either way with dijon mayonnaise or low-carb soy sauce. For bigger meal attempts – I usually split the 300g worth of chosen vegetables into two portion – one as entree (the rutabaga), with half of the protein + quarter of the fat serve and the remaining as mains.

English spinach + liberal use of carrots + rutabagas have been my staple combination lately. However I still do use 100g of cauliflower + 100g of daikon radishes on the stove with soy sauce + olive oil if I feel like making a low carbo noodle soup.

One important finding I find so far seems to be an interesting repeat of how I felt long ago in trying to discern between consuming Saturated Fats VS. Unsaturated Fats intakes. With Saturated Fats – particularly on good old butter and coconut creams = I feel much more “warmer”. A defenite rise of bodily temperature that is so sorely needed during colder seasons. Where as monounsaturated fats – surprisingly less so, as unexplainable cold sensitivities.

Regardless, I believe that stomach acidity MUST be maintained or be prepared to be eventually prepped towards my first dining event of each day. Hence, I usually take up to two DIY betaine capsules (measuring anywhere between 100 to 125MG amount each) to assist digestion of each Keto meal/s.

HC + IF

I may not be able to have daily purchasing power of consuming ten eggs per day. I consider them still an essential staple; regardless if it’s eaten with carbs or without carbs.

So in HC+IF days I’d have one boiled egg with up to 250g of boiled rice alongside with 150g of boiled potatoes. 100g dry weight of Cauliflowers, spinach, carrots and/or frozen green beans – still makes up the bulk of my greens. Protein intakes is more or less the same to that of Keto + IF but at times – lower to ensure that glycogen up take is more or less already taken care of from the carbohydrates.

Next meal – 11PM

If I’m rich – I’d be having my whey / pea protein cheesecake. Or otherwise or up to 50g cheddar cheese. On HC+IF days – I’d have a bowl of 50g oats, boiled water, 15g of WPC serve, 80ML full cream milk, and sweetener. Alternatively (still if within HC+IF format) – I’d get those flat lebanese bread with copious amount of greek yoghurt, lemon/lime or pinches of stevia.

Last meal/s – 11:30PM to past midnight

Protein fluff featuring no more than 10g worth of  powder used.

Alternatively if I have no carbonated water for making any fluffs – I would prep (hours before hand) – a protein pudding instead by hand stirring 10g of whey / pea, with up to 3g of guar gum with pinches of xanthan, 15g worth of frozen raspberries, 40ML full cream milk, 25g of yoghurt and some water (no more than half a glass worth). Stir and whip with a fork about six minutes, you will be surprised how thick and pudding like it will get in due time alongside with freezer time.

Irrespective of either HC+IF or KETO+IF – I will always unwind with a 45g worth of whey / pea protein powder shake with 150ML full cream milk.

Sample outlook – Overall calories & Refeed day/s.

Top: HC+IF Bottom: KETO/LC+IF

Overall calories

My “average” intakes within WEEKLY period/s of KETO/LC+IF intervention ranges inbetween sub 1500s to 2000s (though higher ranges are a RARE luxury). For HC + IF – ranges inbetween 1900s to 2200s. I’ve come to conclude that HC+IF is far easier to gorge for higher calories – but still – at a cost…of more resource consumptions, obviously.

Keto/LC+IF as it currently stands – believe it or not – remains my MOST often used periods of intermittent fasting regiment.

My sentiments on HC+IF is positive only when resources availability allow for it.  Carbohydrate consumptions is much easier. Hands down, but also at an additional cost – of greater hunger pangs I find throughout each fasting window/s. This can be either a blessing or a curse – as I find my hunger patterns to potentiate more insulin responsiveness and glycogen uptakes upon exogenous calories.

But alas, pragmatism overrule hedonism. HC+IF would find me more anxious towards establishing volumous “flavour” as opposed to appreciating the nimble but significantly more – nutritional “values” on the KETO / LC intervention. Difficult to explain succinctly, but my thoughts have not changed ever since I wrote my first ever Keto anniversary feature article in 2016.

About refeed day/s

2017 Food for thoughts Keto anniversary (CKD) Part 2/3

My structure for refeed day/s more or less proceeds similarly from what I wrote previously in my CKD Anniversary; which I’d advise everyone to read should time permits them. Nonetheless, people who are devoted “Fast”-eners – are not going be happy with what I’m about to say. Refeeds are still necessary. Disagree? Good – I don’t care. Do what works for you.

Refeeds are the only “filling-the-gaps” metabolic opportunities to help one recuperate through the insane stresses of deficit weekdays; but still may not be enough at addressing existing physiological ailments eg. disc injuries. Even though my injury is one and quarter years old; it still haunts me whenever I descend during corrective ass-to-grass squats. Or even my beloved alternative wide stanced Jefferson Rows.

Qualitatively also, refeeds still must be strategised upon the most sensible selection of foods and if budget allows – diverse palatability to keep you within sanity.

My thoughts & lessons.

Here comes my five month progression of thoughts on Intermittent Fasting thus far.

1/4

Fasting to save resources is never a relaxed “choice”; but a Primal response against Structural Dictatorship beyond consent.

If anyone think that all this is driven by choice. They are wrong. “Choices” represents a desire to select or to experience – one out of many possibilities.

What if – the range of possibilities in front of you are structured and/or dictated beyond your will or consent? You will be left on your own biological accord at experiencing towards FEWER AND FEWER POSSIBILITIES. My possibility to “life” at this present moment –  is to simply “survive”. With less – and lesser access of resources.

Yes, yes, I know. Anyone can freely argue that “lesser” possibilities also assumes a lessening of undesired possibilities. But ironically, desired possibilities themselves are also objectively dependant on economics. So what can we do when possibilities are limited? Simple. Because resources themselves are scarce to accomodate possibilities in the first place. Limited in = Limited out. Garbage in = Side effects out.

Oh wait, Pedestrian Normalcy shouts back at me.

“Blame your lack of creativity!” Blame your willpower!”. “Get a job!”  “Grow a pair of **cks. Be a man! Your willpower sucks“.  Bravo. “Creativity” is an objective re-manifestation of multiple EXPENDABLE & ALTERNATIVE resources to synergise together towards something new. What if ALL resources themselves are limited? If it takes anywhere between 20 to 40 DAYS to grow an edible plant – what are you going to live on ALTERNATIVELY? Suppose you are month/s away from mortgage default, are you thus willing to go on Fast/s that long?

Otherwise all that’s left is for me reaching out for ear plugs. Muting myself away from all moral comparison roller coaster/s for validating who “sucks” the worst. Goodbye, pragmatic realisations & productivity. Hello, Survivorship politics ad nausaeum.

One lack of something or there-of – will pose a series of implications. Side effects. The following implications will inevitably occur; as a result from holding-on or simply “exercising” to this speculative “Willpower”:

  1. Witnessing continuous need for preservation / continuous calculative apprehension of resource wastage.
  2. lethargy from complete 24 hours fast/s (I am yet to experience a complete 24 hour fast/s but one day a possibility)
  3. Increasing risk of injuries, loss of connective tissue strength from up to 25% daily caloric deficits during resistance training; despite preparatory guidelines AND regular intensity reductions. (eg. even with prewarmup sets, foam rollings, static + dynamic stretches, etc).
  4. Decreased cardiac outputs, potentially leading to failures; from prolonged caloric starvation.
  5. Increased risk of metabolic damage from prolonged calorie deficits, leading to prolonged Physiological Insulin Resistance. This remains debateable (adverse VS beneficial); towards achieving the much-publicised aspect of “longevity” or “anti-aging” – but nonetheless worthy enough to mention it as a possible worsening marker towards Metabolic INFlexibility.
  6. Increasing forced acceptances of consuming questionably expired foods and goods – eg. two years of expired TVP. Or one and quarter month old mayonnaise. Possible outcome? Destroyed beneficial gut bacterium = worsening immune function.   
  7. Increasingly lack of validatory support for sociological homeostasis. Increasing reception of Pedestrian contempt/s, and/or stigma of being labelled “dole bludger”. Being passed at numerous unsolicited advices, judgments for sociological “burden” or  blame,  Survivorship Biases, etc. Possible outcome? I’ll leave it to your judgment. 

…So on and so forth.

I remain confident, that as from what I wrote in my book, evidently spoken out of witness and inquisition –  still adamantly believe that “violence” is more or less structurally coerced or perpetuated from outside -> in.

I am thus willingly label myself as “insane” not because I feel desired to this by “choice” but rather I am perpetuated to it by structural coercions and impositions beyond my consent.

And for anyone think or suspect I’m “lazy”? Again, a delusional luxury.

“Left” + “right” weight indicates TWO DIFFERENT SCALES BEING USED.

2/4

Nothing is infinite. Train nimble. Be prepared for training deload/s. TKD+IF isn’t (consistently) magic.

From 67.5kg post 48 hour refeed to as low as 63.9kg in just four days. Fantastic. Up to THIRTEEN EXERCISES across two and quart hours of pure grit, 6×5 limited rests (less than 30s), four days per week. Wonderful. 

…But at what cost? Please don’t argue with me that Ketosis gives off an unlimited source of energy. If that’s true – explain to me why we already are oxidising ATP just from breathing air itself. 

I actually was convinced; for believing that KETO/TKD+IF preworkout intervention regiment would temporarily aid at prolonging training endurance. But not for long. My own training journal convictions so far indicated no consistent improvements from one day to the next. It at least does not bring about magical healing to my already sore connective joints from prior heavy Jeffersons or ATG Bell squats. In addition, the gastric effects prior to training were at times embarrasingly intrusive.

Perhaps indeed – no intervention/s no matter how far it is modified – remains convincingly “magic” for all times and circumstances. I shall borrow a quote from Elliot Hulse – “Everything works. Until it doesn’t.”

What “works now” remains only at best – a speculation for tomorrow.  Sure, it hurts seeing each and every exercise records slowly plummet from one day, one week to the next. The human physiology has all sorts of pragmatic contingencies in place, should tomorrow’s ordeal called “training day” begins, all over again. One such sign/s of contingency? Pain.

“Pain” – as I slowly learn to accept – is a  GOOD thing to both reconcile and reflect. I don’t need to envy anyone whose objectivist pursuits and records overwhelms my already degenerating L4/5/S1. At least I have a marker and reminder to my own Humility. That’s what injuries are for.

3/4

Do not demonise / completely exclude higher carb vegetables.

Complete elimination = self-masochism.

Yes, you need to remain aware that you will have limitations within $25 purchasing power per week. Yes, you have to remain sensible that this is called low carbohydrate for a reason – hence lower than 100 net grams. But also – you need to be aware that you are Human; with limitations with how far you can live in subsisting on just spinach, cauliflower or kale for the rest of your life.

Have some garlic, carrots, pumpkins, rutabagas / swedes. During times whereby chicken livers aren’t available – these are great sources of Vitamin A and Potassium per 100g.

Oh, that includes onions too, unless of course if you DO severely and genuinely do have a FODMAP response from onions – then I’d see no reason why on excluding it altogether. In my case, I am using it succintly for flavouring purposes. Nothing more.

A note for the paranoid – remember that tomorrow – immediately will become yesterday. Rejoin the human race for a while (8/7 hours feeding window or less). Soon you can then reclaim and practise your self-authenticity during the next 16 (or 17) hours of fasting window before you know it. Rinse and repeat.

4/4

Embrace higher protein intakes. Experiment low and high intakes.

I don’t honestly know why or how such universal dogmatic fear on protein intakes came about to us witnessing epic proportion of debates from one extreme end to another.

I am not even sure if such debates are actually ever conducive nor productive. Every little variable of living, training volume, intensity / formatting, and sociological status / accessibility to resources, overall food quality,  sleep quality, etc – all adds up to convincingly variable judgments. Speaking only from my own convictions it is clear – that an individualised experiment between high versus low intakes – is inevitably necessary. 

Think about it. Protein is an essential macronutrient. It is inseparably as however it is defined – “of first and prime importance”, in Latin.

If we were to deprive ourselves of this macronutrient – then surely – something else must come from somewhere as alternative substitutes. Is it thus carbs or fats? What if those things are restricted as well – what are we looking at then, as further confounders at universally judging whether high or low protein intakes are “better”? Low carbohydrate status? High carb status? Or overall total caloric intakes?

There is however something I suspect along the lines of Auto Regulation; if such a thing is medically “correct”. Speaking from my own physiology – increasing protein intakes from any one meal or from that post workout shake – my body just knows and expects intuitively – that I look forward for my next meal bearing less protein content. Could this therefore be my inquisitive marker to better determine if higher or lower intakes is “better” for me? Perhaps. There is still much to learn within these nuanced and complex physiological response to protein intakes.   

Nevertheless of all importances – this rings true as the bottom line – I let my own bodily & hunger response as hints, metabolic cues – dictating to me what it needs. Not by what meta analysis “paper” out of averaged  statistical biases telling me what to do.

There is after all something everybody needs to understand what YMMV stands for. It is truly an underestimated confounder to everything else beneath all the worshipping behind what “Science” is. If everyone believes that Science is all things finalised objectivities – then they are missing the point. They perhaps unknowingly left their own individualised “selfs” – far and away after having been convinced at taking away home every averaged statistical conclusions and averaged assesments. Now then, the individual effort for determining if he/she is indeed ‘average’- is another story altogether.

Closing word.

This evening as I’m typing this line; marks close to my new Fasting record of nineteen (19) hours and 45 minutes, since 12:45 AM the preceding morning. 

Or perhaps more interestingly that I almost forgot – that today is my 33rd birthday. 

I am neither exhilarated or sad; in finding out just how time flies – when my mind and body – are channelled towards one thing – survival at less and lesser – resources.

One thing is certain – from all the money I saved from cutting my own hair to this day reconciling what I learned from Fasting – I am still not immune for tomorrow’s possibility – for not able to keep up with increasing costs of living.

So what do I want for my birthday “present”? I feel increasingly convinced more than ever – that I do not long much for material presences.

…I simply need just food. Meaningful food to the human physiology.

…for allowing me to continue where I always have been. To have every implicit reason to question every explicit coercions.

 


And that wraps up my feature writeup on Intermittent Fasting! Please leave me your thoughts and feedbacks below!