How long after finishing the last meal does it take to qualify as fasted training?
How long to begin autophagy?
Once a week I eat at 7am, go to the rock climbing gym and train from 3pm-7pm, then eat at 8pm. Qualify?
In my experience I can tell when I'm in a deep fasted state (when I would consider autophagy happening the most) in a few ways.
True, strong hunger feeling. Not emotional or due to lack of activity, but persistent. I usually get a unique taste in my mouth (probably lots of ketones). Extremely heightened senses, and in some cases a very strong forceful feeling of physical ability (Just feeling really capable physically and mentally). Thought is very clear.
Ultimately, with enough fasting you'll know when you're in a fasted state, it just takes some experience. For me, at least, the feeling is clear, and I know exactly what my body is up to. Maybe others here experience this as well.
For autophagy, that's a bodily process that's always happening. What are you curious about, exactly?
For fasting, some schools of thought consider breaking the "3-6 meals a day" routine, with any larger than common gap of time an intermittent fasting protocol. By this logic, if you worked out just prior to the next meal after more than 2-5 hours, you are "fasted."
Other schools of thought (which I subscribe to) consider the minimum amount of time at least 12 hours. I stick with 16 hours, since it's fairly easy to accomplish with a 8PM-begin-fast, sleep, morning workout, 12PM-break-fast routine.
Even if you are only somewhat fasted when you begin your routine at 3PM, it also sounds like you have a routine of substantial duration, so definitely take that into account. I would be wasted after 4 hours of climbing and not eating for 8 hours before, even though I regularly fast 16 hours, and workout for at least 1 hour.
Thought I recalled that MDA had the benefits of fasting kicking in around 16 hours, and increasing thereafter, to a point of diminishing return, which I'm not sure I ever saw.
I don't know how much of a factual answer you can get here, but I've kind of embraced 16 hours. With a daily 16/8 IF, that's just skipping breakfast and then in your case, perhaps lunch to get out to 3:00.
Many have remarked that they could never work out without eating. I'm certainly not an elite athlete, but I've put in very good work (relatively) at 20+ hours.
If you're LC for a while, and the engine is running smoothly, it might be surprisingly easy. Probably at least worth a try.
Look - you're not likely to get the answers here! IMHO better to take a look at the "lean gains" site, which will likely answer the questions you haven't thought of yet. "Eat stop eat" is still one of the best sources out there on IF. MDA, already mentioned, is also OK.
Bottom line: work out not before 5hrs have lapsed since you tossed the haunch you were gnawing on. Furthermore, it is best to make the work out shorter, and early evening, then eat again soon after - as soon as you feel hungry - don't force feed. Bedtime 4 - 5 hrs after that.
I think you are clearly doing quite sufficient resistance work to offset potential catabolism, while still getting the desirable autophagic benefits of IF. I only question the timings of meals - there is no escape from diurnal hormone rhythm - none! Therefore, dine accordingly - nothing after 7pm latest. Breakfast is for debate. Only opinion, but if you can't delay, then the coffee/butter/coconut oil ("starvation mode") breakfast seems like a good approach.