High Intensity Interval Training – HITT



HIIT is a training idea in which low to moderate intensity intervals are alternated with high intensity intervals.

HIIT can be applied to running or to exercises such as squatting. HIIT is considered to be much more effective than normal cardio because the intensity is higher and you are able to increase both your aerobic and anaerobic endurance while burning more fat than ever before.

“In research, HIIT has been shown to burn adipose tissue more effectively than low-intensity exercise – up to 50% more efficiently.” It has also been shown to speed up your metabolism which helps you burn more calories throughout the day. (www.musclemedia.com)

HIIT improves both energy systems for endurance:


Anaerobic literally means “Without oxygen.” The anaerobic energy system is what provides energy in all out efforts of up to 1 minute. For the first 10-15 seconds, the phosphate pool is used up and after that, glycolysis and lactic acid are involved in the effort.

During 10-15 second bursts, there is a very small amount of lactic acid produced. Rest periods of 30 seconds to a minute will provide complete recovery of the Adenosine Triphosphate-Creatine Phosphate (ATP-CP) system. During efforts of more than 10-15 seconds, a large amount of lactic acid is produced and such efforts are extremely taxing on both the athlete’s muscles and their Central Nervous System (CNS).


Aerobic literally means “with oxygen.” This energy system is utilized during prolonged exercise over a period of at least 3-4 minutes. As long as there is enough oxygen to provide energy, the fatigue that you experience will remain at a low level.

This is the reason why many track and field athletes train at higher altitudes where there is less oxygen. By training at high altitudes, they can increase the number of red blood cells which will help them to perform for a longer period of time with little to no fatigue throughout.


HIIT can be used with a few different goals in mind – to lose as much fat as possible while cutting or bulking, or to improve aerobic and anaerobic endurance as much as possible. Diet will mostly determine how these goals are achieved by manipulating calories and macronutrient ratios.

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keto cheat sheet & recipes





FlaxTortillashttp://www.ruled.me/low-carb-flax-tortillas/ wpid-cam00191http://ketoincognito.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/and-alison-said-let-there-be-bread-and-then-there-was-bread-and-it-was-good/








Recipes: Butter Biscuits, Egg Muffins, Paleo bread & More


Almond Flour – Butter Biscuits


Organic Almond Flour Biscuit Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes/Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 8 biscuits
Serving Size: 1 biscuits
Nutrition Info: Calories: 285.4 Fat: 25.3g Carbohydrates: 10.0g Protein: 9.3g


  • 2 1/2 cup blanched almond flour
  • 3/4 tsp homemade baking powder, see recipe
  • 3/4 tsp unrefined sea salt
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp grass fed butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp raw honey


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Mix together the almond flour, baking powder and unrefined sea salt.
  3. With a pastry cutter or fork, work in the butter and coconut oil until you have a crumbly mixture.
  4. Add eggs and honey and mix well to form dough.
  5. Spoon onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes.

More recipes:

Almond Flour Cheddar Biscuits

Keto Friendly

Almond Flour Biscuits (GF) http://thenourishinghome.com/2012/03/almond-flour-biscuits/

Almond Flour Biscuits ~ Low Carb • Wheat Free • Grain Free

Almond Buns



Recipe For Egg Muffins



Paleo Breads




Flavored Butter Compound



Think spices, herbs, citrus zest, etc. Most importantly: Go easy on the liquid ingredients, use plenty of salt, and fresh herbs are better than dried.

Pro tip: You might want to label and date it. Refrigerated, it will keep for about two weeks. Frozen, about three months.




The Fromagette: Here are a few of the infinite possibilities, each uses 2 sticks of salted butter:

orange zest + cointreau +  honey [1 T cointreau, zest of 1 navel orange, 2 T honey]   spread on muffins, scones & breads

caramelized shallot + cognac   [1/2 cup minced shallot caramelized in butter until deep golden brown, 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper, 1T cognac, sprinkle of salt]  top a steak or burger

orange zest + tarragon +  dijon  [1 T packed chopped tarragon, 1 tsp dijon,  1 T orange juice, zest of one navel orange]  pair with Halibut or any mild fish

black pepper + thyme +  lemon zest  [zest of 2 lemons, 2 T chopped thyme, 1 generous tsp. telicherry peppercorns, smashed]  melt over grilled veggies or swordfish

herb blend  [2 tsp.olive oil,  1T sage,  2 T rosemary,1 T thyme, sprinkle of salt, squeeze of lemon juice – pulse in mini processor]  schmear on hearty artisan breads


Dill Butter–wonderful on fish or melted on a cut baguette.

1/2 cup (1 stick) Darigold butter, softened

1 tablespoon fresh chopped dill weed (fronds only)

1 tablespoon chopped shallots

1 teaspoon cracked black peppercorns

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

Fruit and Nut Butter–great on chicken, or on top of a waffle, pancakes or English muffin.

1/2 cup butter, softened

2 tablespoons chopped dried apricots

1 tablespoon chopped chives

1 tablespoon chopped toasted pecans

Mediterranean Garlic Butter–garlic butter with a continental flair!

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 tablespoon chopped sundried tomatoes (packed in oil)

1 tablespoon chopped black olives

1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh garlic


Lemon Thyme

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 clove garlic, peeled
3 Tb. fresh thyme leaves
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp. salt
Dash of cayenne


Lemon Dill:

1 stick unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

1 teaspoon chopped fresh dill (tightly packed into the teaspoon)

Zest of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon lemon juice


Avocado Lime Compound Butter
1/4 cup butter (salted), softened
1 large avocado
zest of one lime
juice of one lime


Spicy Anchovy & Garlic Butter

2 sticks of butter
2 cloves garlic
2 anchovy fillets
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons Sriracha
2 teaspoons red chili flakes
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or ancho chili powder, like I used)


Thai Inspired Butter

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

2 serrano chiles, seeded if desired, finely chopped

1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest

1 teaspoon kosher salt


Indian Inspired Butter

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom


Chipotle-Lime Butter

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 canned chipotle chile in adobo, finely chopped

1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest

Kosher salt


Nori-Sesame Butter

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

2 teaspoons toasted white sesame seeds 

2 teaspoons toasted black sesame seeds

1/2 sheet toasted nori, finely chopped

Kosher salt


Porcini-Red Wine Butter

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

2 tablespoons finely chopped dried porcini mushrooms

1 tablespoon red wine

Kosher salt

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

1 tablespoon heavy cream

2 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped

1 tablespoon freshly chopped rosemary

1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme

1 tablespoon freshly chopped sage

Pinch of salt and pepper

Citrus tarragon butter recipe

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

Zest from 4 clementines (or 1 large orange)

Juice from 2 clementines (or juice from 1/2 orange)

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh tarragon

Pinch of salt

Blue cheese and chive butter recipe

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

4 tablespoons blue cheese (more or less depending on how strong the cheese is)

2 tablespoons freshly chopped chives

Pinch of salt (only if necessary)

Smoked paprika jalapeño butter recipe

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

2 tablespoons smoked paprika

2 jalapeño peppers, pulp and seeds removed, very finely diced

Pinch of salt

Spiced brown sugar butter with walnuts and raisins recipe

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

2-1/2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup toasted walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup raisins

Flavored butter inspiration
  • Add a pat of curry-ginger butter to steamed basmati rice or skewered grilled shrimp.
  • Melt chile-lime butter on sautéed chicken breasts or on sliced grilled flank steak.
  • Toss steamed green beans with almond-lemon butter or melt on roasted fish.
  • Spread orange-cinnamon butter on French toast, pancakes, or waffles.
  • Serve black olive-rosemary butter with crusty bread as an hors d’oeuvres or fold into mashed potatoes.

Pinterest Butter Recipes

Darigold Food Recipes


broiled mussels


Women & Intermittent Fasting – Marks Daily Apple


So, what did Stefani’s research find?

Fasting has different endocrine effects on male and female rats.

In male rats:

No matter the duration or degree of nutritional stress, male rat brain chemistry responds with similar changes. Nocturnal activity and cognition stay fairly stable, regardless of the intensity of the fast. If you push the fast long enough, males will get a little wonky and frantic, but overall they maintain pretty well. It’s like they’re equipped with the ability to handle nutritional stressors.

In female rats:

Any degree of nutritional stress (fasting or mere caloric restriction) causes increased wakefulness (during the day, when they normally sleep), better cognition (for finding food), hyper alertness, and more energy. In short, female rats become better at finding and acquiring food when they fast, as if their bodies aren’t as well-equipped to deal with the stress of going without food. They also become less fertile, while the males actually become hornier and more fertile (probably to account for the females’ plummeting fertility). Ovary size drops (bad for fertility), adrenal gland size increases (which in rats indicates exposure to chronic stress), and menstrual cycles begin to dysregulate in proportion to the degree of caloric restriction.

In humans, the male-female fasting literature is quite scant, but Stefani also found considerable differences beween the sexes, when data was available:

  • One study, which I’ve cited before as evidence of a benefit to fasting, found that while IF improved insulin sensitivity in male subjects, female subjects saw no such improvement. In fact, the glucose tolerance of fasting women actually worsened. Ouch.
  • Another study examined the effect of alternate day fasting on blood lipids. Women’s HDL improved and their triglycerides remained stable; men’s HDL remained stable and their triglycerides decreased. Favorable, albeit sex-specific results.
  • Later, both obese men and women dropped body fat, body weight, blood pressure, total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglyercides on a fasting regimen. These people were obese, however, and perimenopausal women were excluded from the study, so the results may not apply to leaner people or women of reproductive age.

I figured I’d look through my other recent fasting posts for data on female (preferably pre-menopausal) responses to fasting. Here’s what I found:

  • In the only heretofore extant human study on fasting and chemotherapy, seven females (including a 44-year old woman who was likely premenopausal, given when menopause usually onsets, though it wasn’t explicitly stated) and three males found that IF improved their tolerance to and recovery from chemotherapy. Takeaway: male and female (mostly middle aged, though that’s the population that generally gets cancer and undergoes chemotherapy) chemotherapy patients appear to benefit equally from IF.
  • Although both men and women displayed greater increases in VO2 max and resting muscle glycogen concentration in response to fasted cycling training, only men showed greater skeletal muscle adaptations when fasted. Women had better muscle adaptations when fed. Takeaway: fasted endurance training, then, may work better for women than fasted weight training.

As it stands right now, I’d be inclined to agree that pre-menopausal (and perhaps peri-menopausal) women are more likely to have poor – or at least different – experiences with intermittent fasting, at least as a weight loss tool. That said, it appears to be a potentially gender-neutral therapeutic tool for chemotherapy, cancer, and age-related neurodegeneration patients.

Men and women have inherent metabolic and hormonal differences, and it’s evident that these differences in part determine how we respond to a stressor like intermittent fasting. Although my recent series on fasting might have thrown some people off, I want to reiterate that I am not a huge IF guy. For myself, I generally fast when it makes sense – if I’m traveling and good food isn’t available, if I’m just not hungry, stuff like that. I periodically do 16/8 or 14/10 (i.e. eating in an 8 or 10 hour window) and find it works great for me because I am fully fat-adapted. But even I don’t hold rigidly to that.

So who should and shouldn’t consider fasting? Have my recommendations changed?

If you haven’t satisfied the usual IF “pre-reqs,” like being fat-adapted, getting good and sufficient sleep, minimizing or mitigating stress, and exercising well (not too much and not too little), you should not fast. The pre-reqs are absolutely crucial and non-negotiable, in my opinion, especially the fat-adaptation. In fact, I suspect that if an IF study was performed on sugar-burning women versus fat-adapted women, you’d see that the fat-burning beasts would perform better and suffer fewer (if any) maladaptations.

I would also caution against the already lean, already calorie-restricted woman jumping headfirst into IF. I mean, fasting is ultimately sending a message of scarcity to your body. That’s a powerful message that can get a powerful response from our bodies. If you’re already lean (which, depending on the degree of leanness, arguably sends a message of scarcity) and restricting calories (which definitely sends a message of scarcity), the response to fasting can be a little too powerful.

I’d also say that daily fasts, a la 16/8 or even 14/10, run the risk of becoming chronic stressors and should be approached with caution by women. Same goes for ultra-long fasts, like a 36 (or even 24) hour marathon. Most of all, though, I’d simply suggest that women interested in fasting be cautious, be self-aware, and only do so if it comes naturally. It shouldn’t be a struggle (for anyone, really). It shouldn’t stop your cycle or make it harder for you to get pregnant. It should improve your life, not make it worse. If you find that fasting has those negative effects, stop doing it. It should happen WHEN (When Hunger Ensues Naturally), if it happens at all.

I’m not going to say that women should or shouldn’t fast. I’ll just echo Stefani’s advice “to look at options, to be honest about priorities, and to listen to one’s body with awareness and love.” Frankly, everyone should be doing that, but with regards to fasting, it looks like women should probably hew a little closer to her words.

Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/women-and-intermittent-fasting/#ixzz3G940bNNO

Macronutrients & Ketogenic Diet


The 3 main macronutrients that are relatable to a keto diet are fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. All three of these nutrients have different effects on ketosis from their digestion and have consequent effects on blood glucose and hormones.

  • Fats are 90% ketogenic and 10% anti-ketogenic, due to the small amount of glucose that is released in the conversion of triglycerides.
  • Proteins are typically ranged at 45% ketogenic and 58% anti-ketogenic since insulin levels rise from over half of the ingested protein being converted to glucose.
  • Carbohydrates are of course 100% anti-ketogenic, as they raise both blood glucose and insulin.

Protein and carbohydrates will impact our bodies from transitioning into ketosis, but the most important thing to understand is how these nutrients are being utilized for energy. This is through our metabolic pathways after we have ingested nutrients.


Well you might be asking yourself what the heck metabolic pathways are. It’s pretty much the way our bodies handle the breakdown of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates and how it utilizes those depending on the current “state” of our body.

There are 3 different states that we can be in:

  • Fed – Right after a complete meal.
  • Fasting – haven’t eaten in 2-8 hours.
  • Starved – haven’t eaten in more than 48 hours.

Metabolic Pathways


In the fed state, the main nutrients are broken down in separate metabolic pathways:

  • Fats go straight to the liver to be broken down into fatty acids and glycerol. They are then sent around the body to repair cells and make different chemicals/tissues in the body. Excess fats are stored as triglycerides in the fat cells.
  • Proteins are processed into amino acids through transamination and sent off to create neurotransmitters, non-essential amino acids, and other protein based compounds in our body. If we have any extra amino acids, they circulate and repair tissue or get stored as glucose.
  • Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose which is used as immediate energy. The spike in glucose levels will trigger insulin release, which then helps store the glucose as either glycogen or fat in our cells.

The fasting state happens when our blood glucose is at borderline level, which also means our insulin levels are decreased. With the drop in blood glucose, another hormone called glucagon is released to harness the processing of fuel from storage.


In a fasting state, our nutrients are broken down by different processes, but they are all metabolized the same way. They are all broken down into acetyl-CoA, which is an important part of creating ATP (an energy molecule) in the Kreb’s Cycle.

  • Liver glycogen is released and glucose levels increase in the bloodstream. In turn, this glucose is primarily used by the brain and red blood cells.
  • Free fatty acids are released from the fat cells that are in the form of triglycerides. These are the main fuel source for the liver and muscles while we are sleeping. The liver will also form ketones from these, and we can use them as fuel if needed. More triglycerides are broken down and released if we are in a fasting state for longer.


Once we have been in a fasting state for longer than 48 hours, we transition into a starved state. The glycogen in our muscles and liver will run out. The liver will begin to break down lactate in order to create more glucose to fuel our red blood cells.

  • The liver begins production of ketones which enter the blood steam, and the brain and muscles begin to use them as fuel through oxidization.

How does this all relate back to the keto diet? With the lack of glucose in our systems, our body is essentially mimicking a starved state. The liver creates more ketones to use as energy, as there is less glucose available – so we are using more of our fats as energy.


Protein is vitally important in a ketogenic diet, but it’s also a tricky nutrient. If we don’t eat enough protein, we lose muscle mass. You might be thinking “well I can just eat all the meat I can to overdose on the stuff”. Well, that would be pretty delightful, but the massive amounts of proteins would raise the glucose levels in our blood steam.

As you saw, protein is 46% ketogenic and 54% anti-ketogenic, meaning that too much of the stuff will knock us out of ketosis. We have to fall between narrow ranges in our protein intake: enough to not lose muscle mass, but not too much to knock us out of ketosis.

This narrow range is quite hard to determine, as it differs from person to person. Some have reported trouble maintaining keto if they eat excessive protein in a single day, or if they eat too much protein in 1 sitting. Others have 1.2g of protein per pound of body weight and have no problems transitioning and staying in ketosis.

This may also be in relation to the amount of exercise you do, as glycogen depletion will allow carbohydrates to be used up quicker. That being the case, the suggested protein intake depends on your lean body mass and what your activity levels are like.

  • Sedentary: 0.8g of protein per pound of lean body mass.
  • Lightly Active: 0.8 – 1.0g of protein per pound of lean body mass.
  • Highly Active: 1.0 – 1.2g of protein per pound of lean body mass.

Proper Protein Intake


Even though the ketogenic diet is known for the high amounts of fat eaten, dietary fats have a pretty minimal effect on ketosis. In the end, fat intake will determine how much body fat is being used for fuel.

Since fats are 90% ketogenic and only 10% anti-ketogenic, we can get away with big amounts of fat intake. Yes, the glycerol from triglycerides produce glucose, but think of it in terms of the amount of grams you eat. If you eat, say, 160g of fats in 1 day – that is only 16g of glucose.

Since fats are mostly consumed over the entire day and not just in 1 sitting, your body will be using that glucose without you even noticing it’s there. The only time in the day we deviate from a consistent fat intake is after a workout. Fats slow down the digestion process and will slow the absorption of the protein you intake after your workout, so they’re generally not recommended.


As one of the most restricted nutrients on a ketogenic diet, the carbohydrate has the biggest effect on ketosis. The general rule is to consume no more than 30g of carbs a day if on an SKD.

As carbohydrates are processed, they are converted almost gram to gram into glucose when entering the bloodstream. Here, the glucose really has a number of different things that it can do. It will either be burned up immediately for fuel, stored as glycogen in the muscles or liver, or if excess carbohydrates are consumed, it will be stored into fat cells.