2018 Annual Food For Thoughts 4/4

2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (4/4)

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My annual thoughts ends here. Budgeting, and wider thoughts on intermittent fasting.

  • PART 4
    • Costings & Meals Prepping – is Keto/LCHF more resourcefully affordable?
      • Sample Plan $25- $28
      • Sample Plan $35-$45
    • Resource Longevity Analysis
    • Intermittent Fasting and sociology
    • Wrapping it up.

Is Cyclical Keto+IF more resourcefully affordable?

Having experienced sparse periods of HC+IF confirms a resounding yes. As stressed earlier in Part 3 -the need to accessorise each and every meal – with sauces, condiments, desserts to substantiate – quickly becomes a pursuit for flavour. A blessing to the buds surely, and facilitates a much needed glycogen recompensation. But imposes no favour – on my wallet.

I’ve collected enough years of self-metabolic experiment to conclude that hunger management in Keto+IF is more pragmatically sound. Alas, it is very easy for an everyday Pedestrian to label me mistaken; as looking at the numbers on Longevity Analysis section below do not instantly make any “economic” sense to them. “Numbers” alone NEVER, I repeat – NEVER – TRANSLATE TO future metabolic sensations or overall biological experiences. 

Nevertheless, I impose no binary subscription to “nutrition”. If ketogenic intervention is not applicable to you, then HC+IF might be worthy to consider. Irrespective ketogenic or non ketogenic – you must find “yourselves” amidst the various nutritional principles out there at teaching your own “self” against multiple context/s (scarcities / abundance). One context, one circumstance at a time.

Sample plan – $25-$28.

$25 – $28 are my absolute frugal limits. Below sample assumes that (very few) things still yet remains in the pantry, the fridge and the freezer as I do aim to prolong multiple weeks of longevity (see Longevity Analysis sub-section later below).

  1. Eggs: $2 – $2.50
  2. 500g beef heart, livers or if I’m lucky – short dated chicken drumsticks : $3- $3.50
  3. 500ML EVOO: $4
  4. Standard 500g block cheddar: $4
  5. 1kg of carrotsshort dated vegs : kale / turnips / pumpkins : $3
  6. Yoghurt 1kg: $3.50 – $4
  7. 3L full cream milk: $3
  8. 1kg Rice for refeeds: $1.4
  9. 500g pasta for refeeds: $65c
  10. 900g oats for refeeds: $1.2
  11. Lebanese Flat breads for refeeds: $0.90

Sample plan – $35-$45 (fit for a humble king)

As you can see and as previously stressed – $25-$30 per week for indefinite periods – are simply not sustainable because of the severely limited carbohydrate refeed opportunities. Worse – condiment privileges are far and few. Hence, these higher spending bracket once every two or three weeks serves an adequately replenishing purpose; whilst also allowing the weekly dessert whey cheesecakes during Keto/IF days.

  1. <MOST OF THE ABOVE $25-$28 plan> + few combination/s of below;
  2. Extra protein sources: burger patties / minces / whole chickens : $6.
  3. 500g no sugar added peanut butters: $3-$4.
  4. Various condiments: mayonnaise/s, mustards, minced garlic, extra herbs: $5.25
  5. Cream cheese: $2.50 – $2.75 for Keto/LC+IF whey desserts.
  6. 100g Gelatin powder: $3.5
  7. 4kg potatoes for refeeds: $3.5 (sadly unexplained price increase throughout the year)
  8. Rice based cereals for refeeds: $2.5
  9. 2Litre Low Fat Ice Creams for refeeds: $2

(Sample) Longevity Analysis.

Now then, how long do these supplies actually last?

  1. 12x 600/700g Eggs: 2.25 used per day (if also counted towards the making of whey cheesecake as dessert) on average amongst Keto+IF days. Up to 4.5 days of longevity per carton of 12.
  2. 500ml EVOO: 15ML to 20ML per day used = 29 serves average. Theoretically, up to 29 days of longevity.
  3. 250g cream cheese: 50% used per week’s batch of whey cheesecake (see recipe V2). Hence 2 weeks of longevity.
  4. Greek Yoghurt 1kg: from 250g (during Keto/LC+IF) for whey cheesecake + sporadic use / or whey gelatin dessert recipe, to 250g (each day during 2x refeed days) = approx 500g-600g per week. On average up to 12 days of longevity.
  5. Condiments (various).
    • Mayonnaise: $2 250g pesto mayo (ALDI® Colway brand for example) =15-20g each per day. Up to 12 days of longevity.
    • Mixed herbs: $1.60 for 25g. 3 grams each used per day. Up to 8 days of longevity.
  6. The cheese: variable longevity.
    • For the expensive gouda = $4 for 200g at 40g each serve during Keto+IF = 5 serves, hence, 5 days of longevity.
    • Or – For ordinary cheddar = $4.5 for 500g at 45g each serve during Keto+IF = 11 serves. Hence, 11 days of longevity.
  7. 3L Full cream milk: anywhere between 250ML to 300ml per day of use of Keto+IF (dilute with water + xanthan gum), and from 600 to 800ml used during each refeed day. = At best < a week. Sometimes there are days I have to only use no more than 200ml per day of Keto+IF.
  8. Variable meats –> variable longevity.
    • Raw weight 500g beef mince typically yields 425g usable cooked amount. Servings wise – 50g on the low end (combined with other sources such as organ meats), or 100g on the high end. Hence, 5 usable serves across 5 days longevity on average.
    • Entire chicken at $6 (best price I found was $3 though a rare find amongst Asian delis’) typically yields up to seven (7) usable serves cooked amount. Hence 7 days of longevity.
    • 1kg of chicken drumsticks at $4 or if I’m lucky $3.50 for short dated – yields 4.5 cooked serves. About 4.5 days of longevity.
    • 500g livers (either beef, lamb or chickens) – yields around 450g of usable cooked amount. 100g each serve, about 4.5 days of longevity. However due to its insanely high Vitamin A I eat it no more than three times per week,hence longevity may vary on up to 10 days of use.
    • 500g of ox hearts – yields more or less the same usage and longevity as beef minces.
  9. Vegetables: various longevity.
    • 1kg carrots: 50g to 75g serve (grated / processed with mini chopper) per day = 17 serves. Hence 17 days of longevity.
    • 1 bundle of kale (short dated) between 400 to 500g. 100g (raw uncooked weight amount) as average use per day =  4 to 5 serves. Hence 4 to 5 days of longevity.
    • 1 kilogram of pumpkins. Between 50 to 80g of (uncooked weight amount used) per day = 14 to 15 serves. Up to two weeks of longevity, if also turned into DIY pumpkin purees.
    • 1 entire head of cauliflower (approx 1.5 kilogram). Between 100g to 150g (uncooked weight amount used) per day = ten serves. Up to ten days of longevity.

Carb sources during 48 hour or 2.5 day refeeds

  1. 1kg rice: 120g used (dry weight used) per day of refeed meal. Hence, for up to 8 days.
  2. 400g Rice based cereals: 160g (dry weight) per day used. Hence, up to only 2 days.
  3. Potatoes: up to a month and half.
  4. 900g Oats: 100g (dry weight) used per day. Up to 9 days.
  5. 500g pastas: 100g used (dry weight) per day of refeed meal. Hence up to 5 days.
  6. Lebanese breads: finished pretty much in two days.
  7. 2Litre Low fat ice creams / neapolitan flavour: 350ML used per day of refeed. Hence up to 5.7 days

There are other things I’d wish to elaborate – but it is not practical to fit them all into this one singular post.

Besides, I have much more important matters to discuss. Something we rarely hear inbetween realm/s of nutrition and sociology.

Jessica Ruscello @ Unsplash

Intermittent Fasting – a solution to the World’s Problems?

Bear in mind that similarly to my thoughts on the Mouse Utopia experiment, this section are subject for writing revisions; due to its complexity and layered concerns.

Before you ask – no – I am not a Muslim. I am certainly brought up very conservatively, but now as uninstitutionalised as one would never expect considering my ethnicity. What I implore is a question that begs to be reconciled amongst ourselves.

That is – “What if” Intermittent Fasting were an “open liberty”? Expected yet not enforced. Encouraged yet unimposed. Would society then be a different place?

I wholeheartedly think so.

Peter Joseph stated way back in 2011’s Moving Forward, one reason that keeps our current economics system going – is consumption. There is however one mirror image to this word “consumption” that I cannot let go of in my head for however number of years. Somehow – the word “ownership” – remains somewhere or somehow, connected.

This led me to believe that by gaining ownership – one also gains a permit – to consume. “Ownership” today is glamourised quantitatively as amassing enough haven of goods to display purchasing power. Such pursuit resonates amongst a company’s EBITDA graphs, stocks performance charts, balance sheets, profits and loss statements, or an entire country’s GDP.

But underneath these graphs and charts – represents real biological beings; succumbing to these feel-good allures of “standards”.  If “Growth” and “Progress” bear different “standards” to the eyes of a peasant, against that of a politician or a plutocrat. Who then, do you think has a higher seat, display or fervour of power to dictate how or what growth and progress “means”?

Who then; should “own” the qualitative meaning of “consumption?”

My “answer”, be however utopianist it may seem – is that of our own capable and willing – nutritional selves. 

All economic systems and means of distributions demand a harmonious “Order” qualified by quantified validations. After all, Governances and/or Institutions; loves putting entire biological citizens – to blame for any “lack of progress”, “lack of growth”, “lack of GDP” or “lack of contributory output back to the economy“. “Growth” or “Economy” for what? New F16 fighter jets in place of cancer research funding?

All economic systems throughout history rely on collectivist ideologies to coerce, guide and display what is binarily right and wrong. Establishments and institutions stems from this very purpose.

What is correct “enough” for them then, should therefore be (in their interpretation) a display of equality for all the rest underneath the ladder. Can they truly condense biological chaos into binarily-ordered subservience? I think not. 

Coercively also – “growth” both glamourises and perpetuates hedonism (watch 3:45 onwards). Hedonism necessitates even more desire to gain permission for more consumption. Advertising perpetuates this through an ironic contradiction. The more such a race is instilled upon individuals at accruing these haven of securities –  increasingly also becomes susceptible at instilling themselves more in-securities. 

Materialism” – I’d still wager do nonetheless serve as means of a tangibly objective-reward. But their meaningfulness is biologically restrictive to just one (1) pragmatic use and/or context, at a time.

Do you justify the needs of multiple Lamborghinis parked in just one garage? For one space? For one driver? At any given time?

Likewise “investing” (a polite derivative for “owning”) a dozen homes where one can only sleep in one home, at a time. Or a dozen 50″ plasma display screens where you can only watch one at a time. Or ten mobile phones in your drawer all claiming to have the same “smartphone” functionality; yet can be only used one – at a time.

Imkerk @ Unsplash

Fasting – implores a state of being with one.

You may indeed be thrown from all directions as multiple contexts. But only you can address and dissolve yourself in one of them contexts, one (1) at a time. Within this biological state, an authentic self re-evaluation of needs versus wants. I shall elaborate in three points.


Intermittent Fasting – represents a biological, individual – agency of CONTROL – at interpreting what “enough” means.

Let us examine the concept of “control” throughout history. “Control” assumes ownership / coordination of someone else’s nutritional, physiological and sociological – agency, authority and authenticity. All economic paradigms instil “Control”; no matter how “Social” or “violent”; at least in theory. Communism certainly works in theory. Capitalism works in theory. Hell, even Martial Law works in theory.

Damagingly however, “in theory” also assumes concreteness and finality. Thus expecting infinite, unchanged subscription of the same “correctness”.

Can any one of these “economic” systems truly dictate and contain all that of subjective and chaotic variables of “correctness”? Harmoniously? Without conflicts or differences? Across not just one (1) human being, but infinitely – all the next unborn’s in billions? I think not.

Everything bears individualised context. As I assert earlier – “peace” is contextual sufficiency. “Violence” is contextual insufficiency.

“Control” therefore, only in the best of my uneducated imploration – must rightfully remain in the sole hands, the sole agency and the sole authenticity – of the individual citizen. The biology of the “self”. The question of who dictates and owns the meaning of consumption thus – should not be a democratic question, nor a democratic decision. It is an individual question, with a self-pragmatic decision.

Fasting is a state of bravely abstaining the self away from all consumption altogether. Allowing us to reconcile what is democratic, versus what is individualistic. What is pragmatically realistic amidst what is idealistic. 


Fasting – is the ultimate reminder of what is Authentically – present.

To remind what I wrote in my book – the word “Fasting” – is an interpretive symbiosis of how constructively you interpret – “Time”. Agency, authority and authenticity of all “meanings” – should rightfully then be decisively – an Individual decision as accordingly to his or her’s interpretation – of “time”.

When you eat food to a full regularity, each and every single meal and day of your lifetime – you are currently enjoying in the secluded haven of security. You are in the realm of “wants”. Now, when you are not consuming anything – you are in the realm of “needs”. You will not understand much of this, until you alone experience long enough periods of structural scarcities; beyond consent.

When you are in the realm of “needs” it is almost guaranteed – that you also already are in the state of resilience. It is a question of how far you can attest yourself in such a prolonged state; and it is arguably far more of a genuine reception of an achievement – if you can survive against all condescends, barriers and turbulences. Just by chanelling all of embedded resources within you at authentically meeting your objectivities.

Hence, there is no other way at reconciling this present state of resilience anything other – than fasting from consumption itself. An exhaustive meeting and questioning of both structural liabilities; through authentic biological abilities.

Nina Ž. @ Unsplash


Intermittent Fasting implores and encourages – a worldly state of no coercions.

“Eating food” today – has become synonymous to tribal divisions of “either you are with us” or “against ALL of us”. I so wanted to scream out what Jacque Fresco (whom sadly passed away) said over and over again. “This shit’s got to go”. 

Picture yourself a day of living – where by no “race”, or of “believers” or “non believers” aka. “Religion” – are all democratically expected criterias. Only you and your own qualitative objective criteria to pursue day to day, is all that matters.

Fasting – is a whollistic, biological state allowing you to do just that. Fulfilling meritocracies without diversions of competing coercions of correctness. From Lipid Hypothesis to the moral allures of Soylent Green, or doctors’ undying insistence that “morning breakfast is the most important meal of the day” – all this monstrosity at maintaining Coercions Hierarchy, as if some sort of “grand prize” imaginable awaiting them – is absurdly endless and hilarious.

It is human nature that laws are meant to be broken; for the benefit of the nutritional self. Hormones after all overrides any political sensibility. Intermittent Fasting can and shall – be broken in many ways. By only you, without external coercions.

Wrapping it up.

This Annual food for thoughts for 2018 are as diverse as I could have ever written. Spanning across thoughts on psychology, fitness, physiology and sociology. I’ve long envisaged to form for my viewers – an in-refutable insight over what it is like to self-nurture under prolonged austerity. So far I have survived, even despite my lingering uncertainties yet to come.

My book, this “Project”; nearing four years old of lonesome existence – may yet raise a question amongst curious first time readers – “All this project, this blog, this article – sounds full of institutional resentments. Why should it exists?”

I purely wish to remind, to dispel today’s pedestrian subscription of what Humility means. Certainly not based on “spiritual” codex. But of a physiological, nutritional, molecular whollistical compartmentalisation of “being” – all from within. Hence, “This Is™” – what I implore – as the true meaning of Humility. 

One way at exerting this lateral re-definition I feel is to add a social-economics layer of discussion. That which remains sorely missing amidst today’s overly glamourised and saturated “fitness” and “health” Survivorship Biases. Beyond scrutinising the CICO equation to death, over and over.

I am not a “saint” nor a messenger claiming I carry some panacea against all the World’s Problems. All I offer is simply is a contextual imploration, nutritionally – for amongst the damaged or confused out there – to solemnly reconcile what enough means. Through questioning both their liabilities and their own abilities at establishing self-resilience, privacy, and authenticity against today’s institutionalised, coercions hierarchy. 

Rain or shine – may Nutritional Humility be your nurturing path. Thank you, 2018.

And so it ends my annual food for thoughts of 2018. Please leave your comments below.
2018 Annual Food For Thoughts (3/4)

2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (3/4)

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Now, details surrounding training, refeed and supplementation protocols.

  • PART 3
    • The Carb Refeed
      • 2.5 Day refeeds
      • Limit complex starches / more simpler sources
      • Little to no more beans and vegan friendly milks.
    • Training
      • Training philosophy
      • Training Samples / how hard do I train?
    • Supplementation
      • Quasi breakfast intra workout concoction
      • The essentials
      • The somewhat conditionally essentials.
An open message to the (many) fitness orthorexics –  if you already are at a <9% body fat percentage claiming you never complain of hunger, or  the thought of chicken breast, garlic powder and brocolli happily reside with you for life – then by all means close this browser window. You are reading someone else’s in-depth account/s upon nutritional & life intervention/s spanning across ONE YEAR; covering everything from psychology, supplementation and fitness training. This is NOT a light reading. Don’t like it? Then go somewhere else.

“You don’t need refeed!”

Anytime someone shoved the above down my throat, I’d throw back at them: “Do you egoistically claim over someone else’s individuality? 

My stance on Carbohydrate Refeeds still remain simple – I listen not by what research or papers dictates me what to do.

Instead, I look for cues from within – genuine hungers and/or very definite muscle loss visibility. Hence, some things have changed in the way of preferences as curated below:


2.5 Day Refeed experiment

I have for a number of occasions attempted Dan Duchaine’s / BODYOPUS original 2.5 day refeed protocols. Just without the crazy schedule of eating every one and half hour during sleeping window.

  1. My adopted version instead begins as either a TKD-style Preworkout shake (15g worth of WPC + 10g of dextrose) to break the 18+ hour fast and proceeds as an ordinary HC+IF day. OR;
  2. forgo the TKD component make all solid meals firstly from (9:30pm) as carbohydrate meals from there on.

Convincingly – lean muscle mass retained that much more easier. Sounds good right? Yes, and no. My state of readiness to eat on a surplus right away after training remains questionable. “Hunger” hormonal response amongst various training programs as per this study; shows great individual variability. Hence it’d be wise NOT to immediately subscribe to dogmatic advice of “eat big” right away on training days.

Otherwise, I remain adamant at sticking to my own mandatory 48 hours protocol from Saturday to end of Sunday.


Limit Complex starches.

This year puts my preferences of carbs towards simpler sources. The simpler, the more straightforward I feel in the gut. At least, I am not the only one in this boat. High fibre intake might not be the best idea. Long gone the days of my Kellogs’ sultana bran – consuming these paved for the next day’s regretful diarrhoea. Almost without fail.

Give me something logistically accessible white lebanese breads (just don’t buy from Woolies or Coles to save yourselves money), rice-based cereals, with whole milk, whey and pea protein concentrates, yoghurts, with honeys (in moderation),  syrups to taste (if I can afford like a king – pure maple syrups). That; also alongside with usual carb meals from oats (pre-soaked for at least 12 hours+ with boiling water, bit of apple cider vinegar and himalayan salt),pastas, potatoes and white rice.

Buckwheat / Brown Rice? Sadly, for reasons I’m yet to understand – they impose a  somewhat “heavy” psychological numbness and sluggishness all throughout the day.


Using simple sugars (yes, “sugars”).

I have tried both (simple white sugars vs “raw” brown sugars)  as supplementary carbohydrate and as actual sweeteners. Suffice to say it has been interesting. My prior source being cheap $4 per kilo Dextrose (Palatinose now unaffordable to me) seemed rather energetic in comparison. Raw sugar impose me that “warmth” feeling, both in the head and neck; which may or may not be related to an increase of thyroid activity.

Using normal “white” table sugar however did not turn out well. I felt uneasy inbetween meals as opposed to using raw brown sugar.

I assert that I am not a subscriber to Dr. Raymond Peat’s protocols on very high sugars, orange juices, ice cream and low fat milk. I am yet to determine these as a viable hypercaloric, refeed protocol. Because the amount of fructose his protocol demands seems quite high; as per my prior experience could tell– excess intake made me sluggish akin to “hangover” alcohol symptom by Monday morning. Worse – It may even linger onwards for quite some time.


Low fat = underwhelming. No more beans. No vegan milks.

This is a not message you may confide the same dairy tolerance as I do.

The dogmatic law of reefeds heavily revolves around purely low-fat. I have tried acclimatising but continuously felt underwhelmed due to the missing nutrient profile/s, especially amongst dairy milks. The natural fats alone – not only increases their caloric value but also contributed to the full bodied taste, with few if anything is stripped away. I’d wager that for this reason, and speaking from personal experience of refeeds since 2016it is far more easier to gorge on low fat products, than their full fat variety to reach satiety.

I’ve disclosed before that carageenans found amongst Almond / “Vegan-friendly” milks – contributed to sluggish, and cumbersome overall state of being. Not just in the gut, but impacts more so – in my head. Likewise with beans – from kidneys / cannelinis etc- my humble and were once proud protein-replacement staple in my refeed meals – now bloats and brain “numbs” me similarly.

Eliminating one suspect after another, I am now more convinced than ever that at least – the puffiness or very noticeable bloatedness come Monday mornings and afternoon – seems lessened compared to all that of my previous experiences.

Training on Cyclical Keto + IF.

The spirit of Vince Gironda‘s limited rest (<15s for isolations, <30s compounds) 6×6 resistance training still lives on, for three (3) years strong. The reason why I remain subscribed to this principle  – is because it tests the trainee’s overall honesty. My four day training splits remains more or less the same as per last year’s:

  1. Monday (Chest & Tri’s). Up to 300 reps depletion across up to ten (10) exercises up to or under 1 hour & 30 minutes.
  2. Tuesday (Legs). Up to 200 reps depletion across up to eight (8) exercises just under an hour.
  3. Thursday (Shoulders / lats). Up to 300 reps depletion across up to ten (10) exercises up to or under  1 hour & 30 minutes.
  4. Friday (Backs & Biceps). Up to 300 reps depletion across up to ten (10) exercises up to or under 1 hour & 30minutes.

My training session now stretches out bit longer than before because of the need to patiently foam roll before doing any major compound work.

1/4 My stats thus far

Despite prevailing risks of Metabolic Damage; I am met throughout this year a weight set point ranging between (as low as) 63.9kg (at a muscle loss) to 68.5kg (post succesful refeed on Mondays). Note that these weigh-ins are done at around preexercise timing upon arrival at the gym at 6:15/30PM.

Post refeed weight come Mondays hovers between 67.5kg and 68.5kg. As you’d expect – the overall calories and length of refeeding determines the final weight. 2.5 Day refeed protocols would obviously conferred more gain.

Body Fat % via calipers Pollock method on three sites (pecs, halfway quad, and side of belly button) remained usually in a range between 11-13% amongst any given Keto/IF Days.

After 5 days of Keto/IF cycle and before the morning refeed meal – the lowest recorded was just shy under 10%. Of course, calipers are only “feel-good” underestimations. If scanned with a proper DEXA, I would (bravely, without shame) add anywhere between 0.5% to 0.75% on top of caliper measurements. That is if only $125 ever becomes an accessory privilege.

2/4  Humility. Not Intensity.

So how “hard” do I train? Just enough for me not able to talk. Just productively enough – no more than 15 – 30s seconds of rest inbetween sets of five or six. Just heavy enough – that I’m able at holding up two or even three seconds – of genuine eccentric negative tension holds in each rep, with as full range of motion as possible however as accordingly to my connective tissue resilience.

That’s it. Multiply that by Ten and over the next one and half hour – then you’ve pretty much figured out my life routine

I feel no need to envy someone else’s prowess at lifting 250+ pounds worth of squats, benches or deadlifts. Be it from a man or a woman – they remains as “them”. “They” do not represent “my” existing injuries.

I have spent enough years in the gym to realise two types of people.

Ones who sternly gets in and out, hardly a chat inbetween. And the other? “hoofing” around impressing mates on 7-rep incline bell 25kg presses. Rested for ten-minutes chatting before doing volume “air” momentum reps on a curl machine.

The most number of exercises I have done were thirteen (13) exercises, across two hours. Nearing 300 reps all with eccentric tension holds at varying intensity based on however my own (subjective) connective tissue tolerances, all at anywhere between 60-70% 1RM each rep. 

3/4 Sample training – Uppers.

For a chest and triceps split day consists of:

  1. Brisk walk 65 cals level 7 incline with 7.5 speed or Run + Brisk walk 75 cals under 5 mins.
  2. 6×5-6 Compound – choice of either:
    • Jeffersons 25 / 27 / 32.5kg  (each side exc. 20kg bar)
    • or corrective ATG squats progressive from 15kg to 25kg max
    • or 17.5 to 20kg dumbells-on-deltoid ATG squats.
      These being compound movements require absolute synergy from the central nervous system to every other system/s; hence this requires longer resting times (up to 45 seconds) inbetween sets. This compound exercise is repeated across ALL training days.
  3. 6×5 Incline barbell benches 20kg (60kg total inc. bar), lowered if need be to 17.5kg Less than 30 seconds rest.
  4. 5×5 Close grip bar benches 15kg (50kg total inc. bar) Less than 30 seconds rest.
  5. 6×6 Cable crossovers 12.5kg. 15-20 seconds rest.
  6. 6×6 Standard Tricep push downs 150 pounds. 15-20 seconds rest. Attempts with 1-s pause upon extension.
  7. 6×6 Double (each hand) dumbell tricep overhead 10kg. 15 seconds rest.
  8.  5×5 Standard benchpress bells 27.5kg or 25kg (each arm). 20-25 seconds rest. 
  9. 6×6 Inverse tricep push downs 120 pounds. 15-20 seconds rest.
  10. 6×5 Assisted machine tricep dips 25kg. up to 3 second negative tensions.15-20 seconds rest. 
  11. 6×6 Finishing Accessory dumbbells hammers grip standing back laterals 10kg. 15 seconds rest. 

4/4 Sample training – Lowers.

Everyone’s favourite day! Consists of:

  1. Brisk walk 65 cals level 7 incline with 7.5 speed or Run + Brisk walk 75 cals under 5 mins.
  2. 6×5-6 Compound – choice of either:
    • Jeffersons 25 / 27 / 32.5kg  (each side exc. 20kg bar)
    • or corrective ATG squats progressive from 15kg to 25kg max
    • or 17.5 to 20kg dumbells-on-deltoid ATG squats.
      These being compound movements require absolute synergy from the central nervous system to every other system/s; hence this requires longer resting times (up to 45 seconds) inbetween sets. This compound exercise is repeated across ALL training days.
  3. 6×5 Leg presses 170-180kg (first 3 set) restretch briefly before moving up to 200kg. Less than 30 seconds rest inbetween.
  4. 7×6 Seated or standing calfs 45kg -55kg alternate if nerve pain is visible. 15-20 seconds rest.
    <HALF TIME. SPLASH FACE WITH COLD WATER. MENTALLY RECUPERATE. Takes 1/2 aspirin 5-6 minutes total>
  5. 5×4-5 Front ATG Squats (each side plate on a 20kg olympic stick) 15kg, 17.5kg, 20kg, another 20kg (if possible) then lastly on 17.5kg. 30 seconds rest inbetween.
  6. 6×5  Leg extensions 10kg. 15 seconds rest in between.
  7. 5×5 adductors or abductors 65kg-60kg alternating. 15 seconds rest inbetween.
  8. 4×8 Combined Finishing Accessory Exercise – 4 rep of pull ups, followed by 4 Otis Ups using 15kg plate as 1 set. 15 seconds rest inbetween. 


Supplementation (Training)

Pre & Intraworkout all-in-one (as “quasi” breakfast)

I am calling this “Quasi” breaking the fast after 18+hours – because my hunch suggests the small & minute calorie intake of these below will likely overrides this caloric footprint. First sip begins at 6:15-6:30PM. A choice or a 50/50 mix of the following:

  1. BCAAS. I’d willingly change my stance from previous year – that now – I am calling BCAAs a deserved supplement to be deemed essential, but warrants careful periodisation. At any stage I feel somewhat dubious over finding any confidence improvements; I’d alternate its dosage. Or willingly take an on/off usage altogether from one training session or several at a time.
  2. Preworkouts. Now a necessity more than ever; Almost (any) commercial preworkout supplementation works to capacity. Though I must admit that it has been YEARS since I’ve touched any commercial products  but a 30 serve pre-mixed concoctions serves for up to a good TWO (2) months of use at half serving and with quarter serve of BCAAs.

I also likely add some of the left over black coffee + bits of ALCAR + Creatine and 100 to 150mg of cheap Aspirin (taken about 10 minutes before arrival to the gym). As well as up to TWO  teaspoon/s worth of baking soda, if I have neither of those BCAAs or any existing preworkouts.  Since I am still likely consuming this during my workout – hence I am titling this as the all-in-one drink solution as both preworkout AND intra workout. Which typically finishes at around halftime – of each and every training session.


The first meal, politically speaking for the day is not solid. But as post workout shake anywhere between 8:20PM to 8:45PM. Between 30 to 40g powder weight worth of unflav whey protein / pea proteins, sweetener to taste, bit of cinnamon powder and 130ML of full cream milk. If it gets so late (9PM) I would not even bother finishing the PWO shake. Save left over the for pre-bed sips.

Supplementation (IF days)

Now, during weekdays from the criticals to the dubious.

The essential.

Betaine HCL & Pepsin – DIY route.

From assisting mineral absorption to protein breakdown, I feel no need to repeat what I asserted earlier in my 2017 write up of thoughts. It is also thankfully quite cost effective. My one, yes (1) year-ago purchased supply of 100g at $25 is due to soon for a replacement as I am writing this. Combined with separate 25g pepsin purchase – insures for a long enough supply of enzymatic support for an uncountable number of months.

People may ask how I’ve prepped all this myself. I am yet to try a DIY filling station, but take all this with a grain of salt that your needs and dosages may vary.

  1. First things first – would require purchasing a precision micro scale; costed no more than $12.
  2. Then, a 500 qty size “3” gelatin capsules at $17.

Starting with weighing: for a batch of 20 capsules, I measure two (2) grams of betaine HCL and 2 grams of pepsin in a clean tiny condiment bowl. Mix with the handily included scoop my 25g pepsin brand provided then the real labour comes in – individually unscrewing, manually filling in the powder one by one and securing it. Repeat the next capsule and the next. Obviously this is no lab quality, but accommodates humbly. Dry hands and no liquids policy nearby when prepping is a must.

Each capsule thus measures between 150 to 200mg even mix combination of betaine HCL + pepsin. I take this anywhere between two to three times a day during meals.

Magnesium, Zinc + potassium

Once again, it’d be redundant for me to repeat what I previously asserted Magnesiums as an inrefutable necessity. For years without end, I still cling to my morning ritual at applying my own DIY magnesium oil based on any Magnesium Chloride flakes I can afford; dissolved in hot but not boiling – distilled water.

The question that I am yet to find an answer for; is whether they disturb or augment the effects – of fasting windows. General guidelines amongst fasting community suggest none for short fasts. However, to this day I remain pragmatically leaning to safer side of the equation; having previously speculated that during stressful periods that subject to mineral losses – be it through sweat / perspiration I’d certainly take at least a small bite of magnesium; alongside with salted water to mitigate any worrying and signs of deficiencies. Ranging from fainting, palpitations, slow breathing, odd heart beats etc.

Zinc is what I’d consider a long lost forgotten mineral. I need not bother repeating their crucial importance covered in part 2 of this Annual Food For Thoughts.

Vitamin D & E, Milk Thistle, MSM, Baking Soda, COQ10 Aspirin.

I have begun supplementing liquid vitamin D form, derived from lanolin anywhere in the dosages of 4000 IU to self experimental 10,000 IU (ten-thousand) per day. I’d warn for the most serious Fast-ers out there however – that I do notice a glycogen uptake response upon mixing it with water first thing in the morning. Indicating that it MAY have a somewhat insulinogenic effect. To not spoil my fasting window therefore – I’ve decided to apply up to 7 drops topically – on necks, upper pecs, shoulders arms and backs. I put my faith, that utilisation this way is not compromised as from reading this study.

Liver health wise – Milk thistle and organic sulfur MSM. For joints, methylation support agent, an anti-inflammatory and a bone growth hormone potentiatorMSM is what I’d take first thing in morning for all my fasting window. I’m not entirely convinced over the fear-mongering of Milk Thistle’s estrogenic potential, I’m still taking it regardless to help my liver handle all the incoming surplus of calorie. Especially during refeeds.

As explained in Part 2 – Vitamin E also is another one I’d consider supplementing daily to prevent excess LDL oxidations. I’d imagine should anyone dare similarly attempting an Omega-6 PUFA Keto N=1 experiment – Vitamin E and any extra antioxidative support would be crucial.

If statins is the most prescribed drug for aging population – COQ10 is defenitely something I’d continue investing from both supplements + food form as I get older. In addition to of course – natural source from beef hearts & livers.Beyond an antioxidant for the heart but also for kidney health I’d continue taking them on up to 450mg per weekly dosages.

The (somewhat) conditionally-Essential/s.

It’s amazing how much Intermittent Fasting can blindingly saves you so many other minute things you previously thought of being crucially essential. Yet by the grace of passing time itself – eludes much of this fear altogether.

1/4 Multivitamins

Shocking but true, that a significantly 3/4 part of this year – I’ve trialled my next austerity measure – by no longer buying a Multivitamin. My prior choice – the Natures Way multi-vitamin with Spirulina have saved me $15. But does it save me anywhere else? So far, I am surviving.

My reason for omitting them is beyond just saving money – but it is my own interest at truly concentrating on understanding and feeling the effects of isolated mineral intakes themselves. From Magnesiums, Zinc, Potassium, Coppers, to Chromium without added influence of “all-in-ones” blanketed solution.

I’d still classify them nonetheless as essential within my manuscript; fasting or non fasting. A context whereby I still mildly believe a multivitamin still holds in place – is when you are unexpectedly exposed to heavy and regular – stressful waves of change, particularly towards hotter seasons. Many of water soluble vitamins – are likely lost in the process anyway due to fasting or ketogenic’s diuretic nature.

I suspect the need for multis also apply amongst those who travel a lot overseas. Beyond pro, prebiotics supplementation (or in my case, extra betaine HCLs and pepsins) – even if you intend to cook your own meals, you will likely not going to look and feel an exact 1:1 replica of your former self, just from a change of environment.

2/4 Chromium Picollinate / Chromium GTF.

Throughout this year of fasting and feasting – I’d consider this nevertheless essential, but not as life-crucially essential as submitting to humongous 1000mcg+ per day. During 5 days of KETO+IF however – the usage and reliance on chromium is obviously MUCH LESS. I do not think lowering the glucose anymore than what is necessary seems that well justified.

However for carb refeed days or the few attempt/s of HC+IF weeks – very different story. Contrary to the advice of Lyle McDonald – I still believe any “insulin mimicker agents” to be a necessity to keep glucose control in a favourable range. This makes sense to me, pragmatically at least – since you must somehow metabolically prepare yourself to partition that much of caloric surplus of any given “refeed” day. For anyone to refute the need for these supporting agents – is beyond me.

3/4 No-Tropics = optional. ALCAR – still slightly important.

I am glad to say that my reliance on Notropics overall have lessened throughout this year. Simply a pinch of ALCAR into the cup of coffee alongside with baking soda. Or within my pre/intra workout solution as outlined above – ALCAR summed up as my cognitive insurance for getting through the day as emotionally collected, as possible. As I wrote previously, I do not mainly “worship” ALCAR as a weight loss simpleton icon. But also as a muscle protectant during stress during training.

Other NoTropics – including Gingko Biloba or the expensively straight 98% Mucuna concentratesboth remain to this day – an optional “novelty”. I am glad that I have survived cognitively day in day out without such reliance as I was back in 2017. Such supply still remains usable, sitting more than one year old now as I’m typing this.

4/4 fish and krill oils supplementation = detrimental to my morning state of mood?

The most disappointing suspect of all supplementation/s this year, goes to Krill and Fish Oil’s detriments on my psyche-well being. Anecdotal phenomenon suggests their oft-proclaimed anti-inflammatory effect do seemed plausible in the short term, yet strangely turns out worse when supplementing long term.

My on/off intakes have been quite similar in that I am finding Fish oil supplementation as simply just that – confusing and inconsistent. 

At worst – ranging from very pronounced feeling of helplessness, followed by very “heavy” thoughts – both occuring first thing in the morning for at least few hours.

At best – I only noted for their relaxing effect particularly before bed. The above revelation however, is what kept me worried.

I’d still supplement but nonetheless keep a vigilant journalling and whenever needed be – periodize.

Meanwhile, wholefood sources I’d wager, cannot be ignored. There are other things besides Omega 3s and the complete proteins amongst sources such as sardines, mackerels and/or organ meats (particularly brains). Namely the much needed traces of selenium and copper. Hence, ignoring any Omega-3 intakes altogether in my opinion, isn’t wise.


End part 3 of 4.

Now onto the last and final part – of me discussing surrounding aspects of budgeting and final thoughts on Fasting – my deep contemplations – of both its effects, impositions to the world around us.


2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (2/4)

2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (2/4)

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Previously I have summarised all that I could in a single post about 2018, rain or shine. Here we’re getting to the more important bits – every noteworthy updates and interventions.

You are reading someone else’s in-depth account/s of nutritional & life intervention/s spanning across ONE YEAR; covering everything from nutrition, psychology, supplementation and fitness training. All intertwined into both socio-economical and self-scientific (explorative) perspective. This is NOT a light reading. Don’t like it? Then go somewhere else. Pedestrian Normalcy welcomes you back with open arms.

Noteworthy findings & experiences.

In total I’m discussing eight (8) highlights:

  1. Vitamin A and its confusing importance.
  2. Incorporation of Gelatin.
  3. Monounsaturated fats = better sleep?
  4. <30g carb attempts: a blessing in disguise?
  5. Potassium Bicarbonate: not a safe potassium?
  6. Experimentation with PUFA intakes,
  7. Vitamin E: not just for PUFA damage control. And;
  8. Baking Soda; revisited.

Financial oppression sadly; gave me next to no room for other micro interventions.



Vitamin A – a confusing importance for gut health on Keto.

My research led me to realise that both Beta Carotene and Retinoic acids  – may potentiate protective effects on the gut lining. I am calling this “confusing”, because the two competing forms Beta-Carotene (deemed as “inactive” vegetarian sources) and the Retinoic Acids (deemed as “active” animal sources) – still remains open for debate to their bioavailability. Majority nonetheless insists that Livers remains as the best source there is.

Another layer of confusion – individual genetics. Some literature suggested there are those who are able as well as not-so-able – converters from the inactive to the active form. Particularly, individuals carrying both 379V and R267S alleles; were suspect to this conversion inability. Do I believe myself to be a “good” converter? This I don’t know without resorting to expensive Google®’s 23andme DNA screening.

It is well thought that Vitamin A status is augmented with dark leafy greens. But this study – found that hypothesis dubious

…So what to make from all of this?

If I don’t have Livers for dinner (sadly perplexed why beef livers have skyrocketed in price recently), then carrots & pumpkins are here to stay; at least on the basis of affordability.  Taking it with plenty of fat encourages a better inactive -> active ratio conversion. How much of carrots or pumpkins do I actually use for each solid meal? Not a lot. Up to 60g of shredded carrot = nets 6 grams of carbs. Or 80g of butternut pumpkin dry weight: 8 grams of carbs.

By no means organ meats is given up. Over my dead body should anyone dare stealing my oven baked beef livers – with turmeric and minced garlic + butter gently cooked on the oven. I eat beyond for acquiring “taste”, but also reconciling what humility and “respect” truly means; by consuming the most worthy parts of the animal as I wrote earlier.

buenosia-carol @ pexels.com


Inclusion of Gelatin & Zinc for digestive resilience.

The quest for reducing my reliance of Betaine HCLs and Pepsin supplementations first led me to gelatin. It all began me pouring in about 10g worth of cheap Mckenzie’s gelatin powder into my post whey workout shake, one cold evening of August. From there I almost immediately felt – a settling down process of digestion – that much sooner.

Weeks later gone by so compelled – I’ve then decided to write an entire separate article on Gelatin alone. Alas – they can be quite costly considering; especially considering I’m still reliant on  existing unflavoured WPC protein supplies.

Next, another such “long-forgotten” mineral that almost nobody reconcile its vast importance – is zinc.

Re-reading my (prior years of) Master Research & Notes convinced me to reconciling zinc deficiencies’ closely implications to that of gut and digestive function impairments. Also beyond the gut – this study pretty much collates up all about Zinc’s relevance to insulin action and liver health.

I can only describe how I “felt” – especially at a small dose before and during meal/s. A somewhat more noticeable “firming” of the gut, a “sturdier” feeling everything there is deep in the belly. Much less of a feeling as though that something has “leaked” elsewhere. Very difficult to describe; as I doubt myself readily accomodating a $30,000 debt on biochemistry before I can then explain it all in plain English.

So how shall it be best taken? So far – still learning. I’ve tried semi-empty stomach state (as in combined with training preworkout BCAAs) as well as during and after presence of meals, in and out of – refeed days. Research wise, Chris Masterjohn – advised all zinc intakes should be done on an empty stomach, away particularly from foods rich in trypsin inhibitors and phytic acids. Surprisingly, taking it with good ol’ whey proteins seemed highly synergistic at leveraging IGF-1 response.

Alas, financial oppression continues clouding me. A choice between short-dated avocados or 100g tub of gelatin? I’d choose the Gelatin. For the zinc – instead of downing oysters one after another knowing it cost $1 per serve – I’d rather scrape some coins for a 110 tablet worth of chelated zinc for three bucks (though beware this has calcium which may or may not limit its uptake) or a 90 serves of 200mg Zinc Sulphate; for 10 dollars.

Even though I did disclose in 2017 that Zinc Picollinate was once my preferred version of zinc – I am nonetheless still exploring which types I feel is amongst the best for me, and my wallet.

Julia Sakelli @ Pexels.com


Monounsaturated fats = better sleep quality?

I found throughout this year that my sleep / restorative quality seemed more convincing with monounsaturated fats (particularly olive oils on main solid meals). But what about Saturated Fats? From butters and coconut creams and oils?**NEWS FLASH!!! Coconut oil is pure poison!!!!!***  Nevermind that pitiful sensationalism.

I am yet to understand why saturated fats (or how various types of fat) cause changes in sleep qualities. At least however, this study (based on mice) may shed some clues – that saturated fats, but not unsaturated fats – impose changes on select genetic “clock” expressions (“Bmal1, Rev-erbα, and Per2” to name a few). It was needless to say, a technically verbose paper requiring some pre-existing knowledge which I am yet to understand them, unfortunately.

In spite of my previous subscription monounsaturated intakes, this is not however – a conclusion that I am a “saturophobe”.

After all, there are two key missing nutrients in wholefood sources of monounsatured fats (nut seeds, olives). They are Calcium, and (the arguably more so vital) – Vitamin K2.

I know all too well with every pedestrian’s darling of all things “healthy” – kales – seems promising in a form of Vitamin K1. But the much more complex “FAMILY” of K2, from exclusively dairy sources – the MK7, MK4, and MK9-MK10, are almost absent from greens. Those complex forms of K2 seemed plausibly more important at reducing CVD risks than K1 intakes alone. Besides, K1 (again from kale, beet greens, silverbeets, etc) – needs plenty of fat for proper uptake.

So, my hunch for the best all-in-one solution? Gouda cheese. Apparently, the longer it’s aged (13 weeks+) the better its K9 Menaquinone concentrations.

Katrin Leinfellner @ Unsplash.com

Besides better taste, with saturated fats – I feel more mentally attuned like a “sponge”. Intermittently receptive (for the lack of better word) to anything informed at me. Similarly akin to my first experiences with ALCAR / Acetyl L Carnitine.

My problem however, is again tied to economics. The ALDI® Gouda Cheese (might not be on their website only in store) are $3.50 for only a mere 200g block (fit for 5 day usage at 40g serving). Next, the disappointingly inflated pricing of butters I witnessed this year; sadly restricted me mainly with olive oils and peanut butters. I can recall a 250g salted pat costs an affordable two $ between 2015 and 2016. Now? It’s three+ dollars

At the very least, 95c Woolworths Coconut Creams; as I mentioned earlier for their excellent affordability – remains to be the only affordable staple of sat. fats next to normal block cheddar cheese. Otherwise, it’s all predominantly olive oils, some (liberal, not too often) intake flaxseeds, walnut kernels and peanut butters (no added sugars).


<30g carb Keto attempts: a blessing or a curse?

My few “tests” amidst <30g intake of Keto/IF days – was somewhat of a blessing. Yet also sadly a worrisome experience. Mineral deficiencies symptoms, the slow breathing, and overall feeling of unease – were back in full force. More so with revenge.

On the flipside, although yet to be conclusively defined – some pattern of digestion ease convinced me; that restricting my solid meal to just eggs, meat sources, the butter/oliveoils and condiments – brought the most immediate nutrient assimilation I’ve ever felt in recent memory. At times also I was convinced it was during these near zero-carb attempts, if for as long as protein intakes are high enough (IMPORTANTLY) – such intervention enabled me to survive being the leanest; whilst offsetting visible muscle losses comparison inbetween pre and post refeed days.

Sounds hyperbolic and egoistic, but at what cost? the return of mineral deficiencies symptoms above; forced me to re-evaluate my thoughts. Thereby seeking and trying – other types of magnesium and potassium soon afterwards.


Potassium bicarbonate, the worst potassium? Magnesium malate: yet to be convincing.

Starting off with Potassium Bicarbonate (or ‘PBC’ or ‘K/Bicarb’ as I shortened it) – current medical literature praises it a lot. It surpasses the good old baking soda for reducing urinary calcium excretion (…does that meant more calcium retention?).  Anecdotally, Potassium Bicarbonate garnered effective control against those experiencing excessive diarrhoea from other forms of potassium (namely citrate).

Unfortunately, I had many adverse reactions from K/Bicarbonate. The many episodes of tightness in the chest, with slow breathing patterns made me wary. In both fasting and inbetween feeding windows. With water, without water, on coffees, or just tiny finger lick amount. I could recall one Wednesday night surpassing my twenty hour fasts – whilst grocery shopping the next $30 week’s budget I almost fainted as I browsed the aisle. I literally had to brace myself to keep myself awake.

Next – Magnesium Malate – often praised to be a superior form due to its malic acid at supporting the Krebs Cycle, as well as promoting a detoxifying process against heavy metals; particularly alumunium. But in practical terms and use how do I feel out of this? Not convincing enough of response yet, sadly. At least this does not impose that excess laxative effect as per the notorious Oxides form do.

What about the energetic (or ergogenic) part of it? Although an anecdote – some seemed to report overstimulation. Throughout weeks of using it on/off as preworkout aid – so far I am finding it somewhat difficult to find any distinct benefit throughout my training windows.

Perhaps, I shall stick to what I am familiar with. The nanohydrate based magnesium citrate (“Magnesium Forte” by bioorganics) as a plus also provide manganese (one of few minerals which helps offset the excess zinc dominance) as well as vitamin B6 (being synergistic with Zinc). For my go-to potassium source – it has simply been the minute sprinkle of Cream of Tartar / Potassium Bitartrate. It is tasteless (though if mixed with black coffee somewhat appears to have “cream” like palate), and at only small finger pinch amounts – already gives 247mg of potassium.

In spite of all that I am still learning, as there are many others yet to be experienced (Potassium Citrate, Malate, to name a few). These perhaps are reserved for the next year of scrutiny to unfold (with the money to allow, somehow).

Kilian Peschel @ Unsplash.com


Experimenting with Omega 6 PUFAs on Cyclical Keto + IF.

I wrote an entirely separate article; calling for a strong re-evaluation on our understanding of Omega-6 PUFAs. Yes the industrialised “666” of agriculture. The heretics of all things “health” and “fitness”.

I thought; why not put myself to the test. For a few Cyclical Keto/LC+IF week/s on and off intermittently using PUFAs as Nuttelex® sunflower spread (how colourful and bright the packaging!) The PUFA concentration is as according to the packaging is 41% sunflower (17.5g saturated, 24g poly, 23.4 unsat). I’m also using Heinz Garlic Aioli. Both sounds plentiful enough of PUFA to me (the 65g of fat per 100g content in the Heinz® Aioli is only 5 grams as sat fats).

Also to ensure higher Omega-6 to 3 ratio throughout these sporadic experiments I’ve upped the intakes of both flaxseeds and walnuts (though quite a sorry on my wallet) anywhere between 20 to 30 grams huge combo lots as per to my digestive comfort.

How did it go? …Not very good.

On my first full 5-day-pledge of  Cyclical Keto+IF on predominantly PUFAs – I felt more susceptible to feel sick. As in  groggy throats, stuffy noses, and excess mucus. These seems persistent almost without fail; wherever PUFA’s on the meal.

Worse – training windows seemed adversely affected. During  my 5×5 to 6×6 limited rest training across up to 12 exercises – I felt tightness within regions of the chest which were not there before. Especially among tension hold machine eccentrics. ISOLAT-DY Back rows, ISOLAT-Front lats with overhand (bicep) grip seemed repeated suspects.

At times, heartburn and overall tightness sensations were more prevalent than if I were to use less PUFA oriented fats. Betaine HCLs and Pepsins certainly did help, but I still aim to reduce my reliance on it. Amongst refeed days of (light of course) PUFA intakes I also noted surprisingly – that upon Mondays and Tuesdays – there were much less bowel movements.

My verdict? Given from my sparse experiments (on/off with various concentrations) thus far, perhaps it’s likely a “no” for me. However, by no means that I am giving up other very specific form of PUFAs – some liberal flaxseeds, and not forgetting also – copious amount of selenium vital for thyroid function from brazil nuts. Besides, they complement as crunchy companion next to my (next revised!) humble DIY whey cheesecakes.

7/8 Vitamin E – not just for damage control.

Having done the above delirious self-experiment, I am obviously concerned with the many theories over PUFA’s notorious inflammatory effects. Hence prompting me to supplement Vitamin E. The dosages found in commercial shelves however are  hilariously high (250IUs being the smaller amount) – hence I only take up to four in total each week.

The strangest effect I am yet to understand why – is that Vitamin E helped improves sensory and palatability perception in ALL FOODS.

Searching for any medical literature on this phenomenon sadly returns with almost nothing. But one paper suggests Vitamin E’s possible relevance to taste buds and olfactory sensory mechanisms. Although that study sadly, is highly priced against public access.

Further that, interestingly – I have experienced strangely very FAST – hair growth whenever I supplement Vitamin E. This is not a joke – I expect to do my DIY-Undercut-Fades ritual/s approximately once every four & half weeks. On sporadic Vitamin E supplementation? As often as once every TWO and half (2.5) weeks. 

8/8 Baking Soda; revisited.

Last noteworthy exploration this year (as well as the previous) is me revisiting Baking Soda. Whether it’d be a pinch in my black coffees during fasting window, 2 heaped teaspoons as preworkout aids or on refeed cereals, or even with /pwo shakes = I do feel some elusive effects from it.  

Many literatures claiming Baking Soda’s benefits – from improving insulin sensitivity, ergogenic preworkout aid, increasing bodily CO2 levels – all indeed sounds intriguing. I myself confirmed a greater – muscle glycogen uptake in mixing whey shakes with it especially during refeeds. Referring back to Lyle McDonald’s Ketogenic Diet (page 47) shared a study suggesting that a rise in Ph; from supplementing sodium bicarbonate does help prevent protein breakdowns.

More baking soda seems good then right? I remain ambivalent. Tinkering various intakes throughout Cyclical Keto, now IF, during and out of refeeds – I notably experienced some unexplainable light aches in joints within just everyday mobility. Especially when sipping my Warmed Apple Cider Vinegar +Baking Soda + hot water drink. One study may shed some light that perhaps it is the bicarbonates that may compromise bone mineral density.

And what about the gastric GI stress effects? Yes I do experience mildly as such. Obviously not as severe as this anecdote. This just confirms that “nature” is never benign.

I no doubt willingly praise it as an “essential” preworkout aid next to creatine + ALCAR – but unfortunately also almost without fail – I experience constant burrping during ALL training windows. That is, baking soda mixed with or without – commercially sweetened products – BCAAs / various preworkouts / beta-alanines. Perhaps the so called “adaptation” process is required,  akin to Creatine’s twenty (20!!) grams worth of “Serial Loading”. However, “Serial loading” of anything – in my opinion – is mildly abusive, in that I cannot predict the readiness of my state of gut at preparing such an event.

Baking Soda; whilst however seemingly essential; be it Keto or non keto – remains noteworthy to be experimented only at an individual level, further at his or her’s metabolic variability.

All this debate of “Acidity = bad. Alkalinity = good” remains subjectively complicated and context dependent.

INDIVIDUALISED Nutritional journalling remains for life. After all, that’s what Nutritional Humility™ is all about – endorsing individuality against egoistic and subjective – epidemiology of Correctness Hierarchy.

End part 2 of 4.

So that wraps up the second out of four parts. Next in Part 3 = my discussion surrounding training, refeed protocols and (further notes) on supplementations.
2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (1/4)

2018 Annual Food For Thoughts: Cyclical Keto+IF (1/4)

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To help with consistency I’ll structure this feature writeup as similarly to previous as the following sections:

  • PART 1
    • Summary
    • My Setup thus far.
    • Problems?
  • PART 2
    • Notable highlights & experiences
  • PART 3
    • The Carbohydrate Refeeds
      • “You don’t need refeed!”
    • Training
      • About me / my average stats
      • Training Samples / how hard do I train?
    • Supplementation – Training
    • Supplementation – during IF days
  • PART 4
    • Costings & Meals Prepping – is Keto/LCHF more resourcefully affordable?
    • Sample Plans
      • Longevity Analysis
    • My (broader thoughts) on Intermittent Fasting.
    • End

You are reading someone else’s in-depth account/s of nutritional & life intervention/s spanning across ONE YEAR; covering everything from nutrition, psychology, supplementation and fitness training. All intertwined into both socio-economical and self-scientific (explorative) perspective. This is NOT a light reading. Don’t like it? Then go somewhere else. Pedestrian Normalcy welcomes you back with open arms.

A summary.

A humbling and resilient episode. Which in my opinion still remains unchanged – as instinctual necessity.  I’d willingly conclude that no other nutritional intervention, other than the Cyclical Ketogenic +IF, are as daringly honest at truly questioning your capacity for living life to the fullest.

It is what I consider a “complete exhaustion”; at teaching the mind and body to survive against many diverse contexts of “stress”. From one context of psychological / physiological sensing of scarcities (metabolic “damage” as readaptations / stress). All the way to determining readiness at surviving fitness meritocracies (resistance training), and how readily well the partitioning efficiency of all nutrients within episodic caloric abundance vs scarcities (severe deficits vs. surplus / refeeds).

Every struggles faced this year have been met far more genuinely challenging than anything I’ve witnessed collectively. Including  that of all my former years of CKD alone in 2017 and 2016. In spite of all these – I am glad to have survived much of 2018 without the need for excessive support of No-tropics. My anxieties and depressive outlooks; inspite of daily frequency – have convinced me not to rely on their usage.

What about HC+IF days/weeks?

I no doubt would plainly admit – that HC+IF (that is “normal” low fat, high carb) days are helpful to maintain lean muscle mass. I however remain skeptical at times in questioning my own digestive & metabolic readiness; at allowing copious amount of food in the hope that I am “readily able” at coordinating them all into supposed anabolism; without the risk of that pending / “looming”, or lingering – hunger pangs and anxieties I often discussed earlier.

Another concern is the blind pursuit for “accessory” foods. White bread alone, and/or “refined” low fat products –  either is never satiating. Period. You’d need syrups,sauces, condiments, and other trivial accessory-foods to make it all worth while.

Is such an HC+IF eating window a blessing? Indeed. But this hedonic impulses at acquiring more such “accessories” as “flavour” – is abusive to one’s existing financial means.

Carbohydrates nonetheless are still necessary.

In spite of all my praise of Cyclical Keto+IF,  I may appear as though I glamourise starvation, or nutritional masochism. I still however asserts that within my booknever to promote such a case for an indefenite lengths of time. 

It is neither wise nor productive, in my opinion from all that I’ve explored – to stay in a prolonged starvation. Carbohydrate refeeding periods after all – awakens the much needed insulin response to enable their destined job – at rapidly utilising glycogen recompensations as they should be; to prepare me yet for another week of embracing overall resource scarcity.

The word “Intermittent” in front of fasting here, is excruciatingly important at reminding us all not to deeply entrench ourselves in binary dogmatism. Whether in keto or out of keto, within fasting and feasting – I have embraced all realms unbiasedly, each in their own microcosmic experience/s lived to the fullest.

I will be discussing more on refeeds on Part 3 of this Annual Food For Thoughts.

sample 20 hour evidence.

My Setup Thus Far

My most often used setup (surrounding higher protein, but still LC/KETO) + intermittent fasting setup more or less remains unchanged from my previous write up. Fasting begins from 12:30AM onwards. At times when I am still hungry – by 1 AM before sleep.

Mondays through Fridays remain as my 18+ hour fasting days, less than six or (even five) hours of eating window. On Wednesday (my resting day) – I fast willingly up to no more than twenty (20) hours.

Once again of course, warm liquids only intake during all fasts. Not even Creatine with coffees; as I believe arginine, methionine and glycine are all gluconeogenic. Simple black coffees, always – remained as staple. Alongside with few occasions  – warmed apple cider vinegar + water, and (sometimes) quarter squeeze of lemon. Pinch of baking sodas, himalayan salt  and cream of tartar in both the coffees and the warmed ACV drink – helped maintain the needed mineral intakes throughout these 19 hours+ fasting windows.

On training days – my “breakfast” technically begins as soon as I sip my preworkout solution consisting of either a preworkout formula (branded) or my default 10g worth of BCAAs with creatine. In my opinion – it remains debatable whether the small caloric footprint out of this temporarily “fed” are enough to pose concern; considering the sheer volume of training that likely overwhelms it.

On a non fasting day (Wednesday) – breaking the fast simply involves a whey protein shake at around 8PM or as late as 8:45PM, followed by first solid meal of the day at 9:40PM. Many would ask why for the whey protein – speaking only from my experience – I am convinced that higher protein intake help offsetting lean muscle mass losses. Deliberately delaying such intakes in my opinion makes reaching daily calorie intakes very difficult, if not at times impossible.

Top: HC+IF highest intake Low: LC+IF lowest intake

Lowest / highest calorie intakes

General IF Days (HC+IF/LC+IF)

The highest recorded for Keto/LC IF days are 1800 calories. The lowest? 1220. Per day. Yes. On training days. 

“Hunger” hormonal response/s in the context of resistance training remains confusing. Some reported decrease, some – increases. I somewhat belong to the paradoxical group whereby rest days is an inclination to eat more. If I am not hungry even after exercise then by logical instinct – why should I be eating more than what is pragmatically necessary? Numerous occasions have set me unconvinced for big caloric surpluses. Even after a squeamish 35g worth of post workout WPC with up to 150ml or even less worth of full cream milk+water (to save supply for entire 7 day longevity use).

Nevertheless whenever hunger is felt genuine – higher calorie intakes during KETO/IF ranges possibly between 1650 to 1800 calories. But subjectively vary in terms of practicality – from very difficult – to just downright impossible. I have warned not to advocate this in the book repeatedly – that surplus attempts on any Ketogenic regiment is unnecessarily taxing to the digestive system.

Refeed Days (2.5 days or 48 hours minimum)

So when do I truly eat like a hungry person? That’s when refeed day/s come in. Either as 2.5 days Body OPUS Style (beginning from Friday’s late afternoon as preworkout meal or starting from a high carb dinner / 1st solid meal). Or my tried,  and long practised – 48 hours feeding window from rise of Saturday to Sunday bedtime.

Highest calorie intakes on high carb days are so easily doable. Up to 4500 calories were recorded in first day (Saturday) before the mildly decreasing to 4000 or even 3500. More on refeeding protocols in Part 3 of this Annual Food For Thoughts.

What about HC+IF days?

Quite a different picture. The highest intake is 2500+; that is if I opt for a preworkout meal as the first legitimate breakfast-prior to evening training. I find high intakes to be a lot easier amongst non-training days whereby rest and anabolism are expected. The lowest? Less than 1600 calories.

In spite my seemingly patriotic insistence to Cylical Keto/IF; as I mildly suggested beforehand – should a Ketogenic intervention is not conducive to someone else’s physiology – a conventional low fat paradigm such as HC+IF or even ISO+IF (33/33/33) I’d wager would serve plausible alternatives for reducing overall resource footprint.

Are there “Problems”?

Of course there are “Problems”. There is no such thing as fitness or nutritional utopia. “Survival” and/or “Anxiety” is an inflammatory event, “low”, “high” grade, I don’t care. Accumulate enough, Nature shall rightfully respond with all sorts of derangements and repercussions.  

I’d wager – speaking out of my (nearing) four years persisting within this way of life can attest – “surviving” nutritionally on a limited <$30 per week is just as legitimate as “surviving” on your next 300+ pound deadlift PR attempts despite lingering L5/S1 disc degenerations, knee patella mistracks and/or addictions to painkillers


Risk of metabolic damage?

Some reassures this an evolutionary trait as just simply that – a state of self preservation. Any word pertaining “damage”; especially out of today’s black-dog buzzword “Metabolic Damage”; in my opinion nevertheless should imply less of a binary negativity. If anything, it’s a perfect response of Nature at keeping us alive amidst dire resources.

However such is also a period of inrefutable catabolism; in a way that it nevertheless imposes my other primal admission of needs – at a compromise.

Whether it is a subconscious deactivation of certain “impulses”; eg. libido / reproductive systems. Or an instinct hesitation against more exercise / caloric expenditure due to sensing of prolonged and delayed injury healing. Or the helplessly excess lactic acid production during cortisol overload. Whatever physiological and/or psycho-social case may be – what feeds in, ultimately determines and affects the fate – of what gets out. 

Whilst “Fat loss” per se is not necessarily my goal of life (despite vanity remain as my own primal admission of need) – it has been interesting nevertheless that I’ve stalled at a certain weight point, despite five-daily basis of <1400 calorie starvation. Combine that with desire at maintaining fitness meritocracies – accumulates enough for a perfect storm towards catabolism.  


More than 20 hours fasting? I’d say no.

That long of a fasting window to me – is borderline impractical and imposes far more metabolic stresses than it already is. Once again, I am me. You are you. I am not obese. As a disclaimer – this is not a blanket gospel for all physiologies.

Daily pragmatic caloric needs – still remains a physiological necessity. A multivitamin may help a prolonged extended fast for any micronutrients gap. But eating whole foods themselves, I’d wager – are more fulfilling from a primal instinct perspective. However this necessitates a well-coordinated scheduling; which may prove a struggle in one’s inflexible daily motions.

People do not also factor in – the sleeping window – which that not only counts towards the number of calculated hours next to the (awakened) fasting window. But also plays a role in both digestive readiness and comfort. I plainly admit I’d love eating my food at night close to sleeping window. But what if it gets too close / late? Caloric deficits once again are inevitable. Both my digestive capacity and readiness would blunt and thereby a loss to effectively partition any incoming calories.

Sadly, I hereby conclude – fasting beyond 20 hours threshold – is likely too detrimental for my overall sustenance.

OMAD / One Meal A Day seemingly appeals to many people, especially if they hold long and actively demanding occupations. But I’d wager that simultaneously compressing so much competing characteristics of food – acidity, alkalinity, fibres, sweet vs salty vs “umami” Food Combining  would very likely be an impending issue.


People immediately assume I resort to all this by “choice”.

A major problem this way of life imposes, five years strong since 2014  – is withstanding every outside dismissals and frowns of me as simply just that – a resentful, non-significant footnote to society. Under their lexicon – they assume I still have “choices”. Worse, they resort to politics of “-isms” / gender inequalit”-isms” to weaponise their arguments. I beg them to reconsider; over the unreconciled death & suicide statistics on men.

Nevertheless “man” or “woman” – until you truly understand what “scarcity” is, beyond finances but deeply at biological level – depleting enough of your blood ketones, mineral reserves and glycogen compensating all that of your inner pursuits (fitness) and liable obediences (sociological) – you have no right to claim “gender” or “circumstantial condescendence” as sole basis to fuel your argument towards your own correctness superiority.

There is no room for “politics” in the realm of nutritional “fasting”. I’ve said this before, I will stress it again. In the context for life’s preservation – Fasting is not a “choice”. 

Why? Because it is NOT a hedonic or metabolically a beneficiary “privilege”. Hence, it is NOT a “choice”. It is easy to fall prey to subscribe that Autophagy is a readily state of rejuvenation from catabolism; but such a state exist without its concerns. “Choices” assumes there is always a longing for a politicised, sentimentalised – “lesser-evil” option. Except sadly there is little, if at all – “lesser-evil” ways at sentimentalising “choices” in Nature. Period.

Whomever you were; names undisclosed – condescending me down to the depths of all directions – I implore one day waves of change shall overthrow all your prior Survivorship Bias and unsolicited advices down my throat. It’s not a matter of how. It is a matter of when.

Until such time arrives, I shall leave you quietly at absorbing your own pitiful remorse.

Intermittent Fasting; nevertheless is here to stay.

Looking back at the dawn of my very first day of intermittent fasting, on Christmas of 2017 – prepared me a year of resilience like no other. Fasting intermittently, combined with further (to nearing point of dire) austerity – all nevertheless reinforces my own Self-Authenticity – at prevailing against each and every hour of hunger, condescends, barriers, and turbulences.

No matter how much bickering one may frown against the Institutions or the powers that be; we all, nevertheless are left with only one (1) eventual instinct at surviving against insecurities.

I am convinced such eventual instinct – has to be Intermittent Fasting. It allows us to reignite – our inert, INDIVIDUAL and  biological definition – of what “enough” means. A reconciling of our own existing securities, from deep beneath us. Not from “Scientific” perversion of pursuit for statistical”correctness”. But simply acquaint ourselves on our own biology for determining our authentic resilience. Based off from no other “bodies” – be it government bodies or Institutions – than our very own.

Waking up to dawn with no food then begins – the authenticity – of life’s tests. When Food arrives inevitably on the table – you will reinterpret them that much more authentically as sustenance; rather than blind hedonic impulses glamourised amongst pedestrian billboards, glossy packaging, and TV screens.

End part 1 of 4.

Meanwhile, what could be more better than celebrating end of year without an improved whey cheesecake recipe? With up to 40% less resource cost? Be sure to check it out and leave a comment.

I implore all readers throughout reading this frugal “Nutritional Annual Report” – what you make out of reading this account is however up to you. You may mirror my “opinion” but not exactly a 1:1 match and ratio – of my unknown deficiencies or metabolic incapacities.

Next part I’ll discuss notable highlights and interventions thus far .

This Is™ Humility Whey Cheesecake V2

This Is™ Humility Whey Cheesecake V2

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To celebrate my Annual Food for Thoughts 2018 writeup – here is a much more frugality approved recipe over the initial 2017 version. 40% Less Greek yoghurt used. 50% Less cream cheese required. A staple dessert during this year’s strenuous Cyclical Keto/LC+IF.

Ingredients & Pricing

Each cake = 4 serves. Or 3 for a very hungry person.

  1. 165g (any brand) Greek yoghurt preferably NOT low fat (obviously). ($4 for 1kg tub) 65 cents used up.
  2. 1x whole egg. (one 12x 600g carton of egg = $2.00 – $2.50). 18 cents used up.
  3. 125g of cream cheese (regular)($2.50-$2.75 per small tub sadly a price increase compared to 2017). $1.25 used up
  4. WPCs of choice (I’m using unflavoured 2 Brother Foods bulk purchased FIVE KILOGRAMS for $25) = 33g. 17 cents used up.
  5. 3 tsp psyllium husk ($6 per 250g bag). 8 Cents used up.
  6. 1 tsp of Xanthan Gum. A 100g batch @ $5 lasts for plentiful for month/s at a time.
  7. Sweetener of choice, crushed tablet/s of either: Equals (Ace-K/aspartame based) / Hermesetas HMC cubes (the old one as Sucralose based) / or ALDI’s Merryfield brand (Stevia based): $6 for average simplicity sake. I’m not here debating whether all these sweeteners are heat stable or not – one study says yes, and the other says no. My pragmatic conclusion? I’d crush the tablets BEFORE serving.
  8. (optional) Baking soda & cream of tartar: just out of experimentation I’ve been trying to make a cheesecake that “rises” but so far failed. Hence, these two are optional ingredients.

Tallying up the price – it takes approximately $37AUD as “Recipe Initial Investment”. And it takes $THREE to make each cake.

Theoretically, you could make up to TWELVE (12) cheese cakes from this initial investment of $37. You know exactly what goes within it. If you earn a very comfortable $75,000 Australian FIAT dollars (aka worthless currency) per annum (excluding tax) – you should be able to comfortably make this perhaps three cakes (3) every week. Every week, of the year. 

What’s $468 Dollars ($3 times 3 = $9 per week; $9 times 52 weeks per year = $468) per year means to you? That could be a holiday for sure. But a very frugal holiday in paradise indeed – without food.


Preheat your oven to 150 degree Celcius.

Go combine all ingredients (use 150g of yoghurt first of all I will explain why later), before blending it all with a mixer be sure to gently first soften any solid chunks.

The main difference between this and the initial versionis that you HAVE to add plenty of water – up to 100ML worth to ensure that the pysllium and the xanthan gum swells up well.

If you do find the overall mixtures is too “broken up”, add slightly more xanthan gum (tiny pinch at a time) with perhaps 2 tablespoons of water. The goal here is to ensure the overall resulting mix is as fluid like as possible, not dispersed or broken to chunks. This may take time and practise.

About a minute or two worth of mixing, it’s time to bake. Bake for 25 minutes at preheated 150 degrees celsius. After this 25 minutes have passed – turn down the heat to 50 degrees celsius and bake for another 30 minutes.

Take out and let cool to surrounding temperature before storing in fridge for at least six hours before serve. The psyllium + xanthan should resembles a thick enough finish of a cake.

Now – that you’ve used up 150g of yoghurt, chances are – the familiar cheesecake palatability is missing. This is where you’ll need to spoon out a further 15g of greek yoghurt to help achieve that on top of each serve.

Next, you also need to now add the sweeteners. Crush the tablets.

World Peace.

Version 2.0 Macros

One batch, one cake = 4 serves.  The entire cake comprises of 648 calories. 20g of carbs (most are added from fibre), 40g of fats, 52g of protein. Split into four (4) serves you will get 162 calories, 5 grams of carbs, 13g of protein, and 10g of fats.

Nearly HALF the calories off the initial version; but thanks to the added “bulk” from water + pysllium + Xanthan = makes this a more frugality friendly version. Humility approved.

Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 162
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10 g 15 %
Saturated Fat 6 g 31 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 47 mg 16 %
Sodium 320 mg 13 %
Potassium 18 mg 1 %
Total Carbohydrate 5 g 2 %
Dietary Fiber 0 g 2 %
Sugars 5 g
Protein 13 g 25 %
Vitamin A 1 %
Vitamin C 0 %
Calcium 11 %
Iron 1 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

To up the fat content and finish – I serve mine with flaxseeds and if the austerity budget allows – 15g worth of peanut butter, or 15g brazil nuts and raspberries. With cinnamon on top.

Feeling constipated or gassy the next day?

My thoughts on fibre is neither for or against. Try lessening the amount of pysllium husk next time, but try adding more of the xanthan. Experiment the amounts.

Mix the whey 1/2 and 1/2 with gelatin powder.  There seems to be compelling reasons to balance between muscle-meats intake with gelatinous rich sources to aid gut health.

Mineral supplementation is also a must. No excuse whether if you’re Keto or not keto. If 50% of the population in one of the world’s populous countries are deficient in magnesium; then it pays to have a good Magnesium supplement in order. Lacking Potassium may also be another factor; though I’d warn this to be the more difficult to manage than magnesium; too much of one can lead to dangerous side effects.


Another recipe for ending the year done and dusted. Post your thoughts below!