My Intermittent Fasting Journey
When I first began my Intermittent Fasting journey, my main motivating factor was weight loss. I’d tried diets, calorie reduction, good ol’ fashioned exercise, and nothing was (consistently) working for me. I had reached a point where I watched a video of myself in a fundraising performance in front of 600 people and could not believe that was me, in that body. Watching it made me feel so ashamed that I had let myself get so far beyond my comfort zone. In my mind I had used every excuse for letting myself get that way – I’d been too busy, been working in a food related environment, was too tired. But enough was enough.
My father had begun his Intermittent Fasting journey months prior, so he’s been the trailblazer for this family… and he’s just hit a milestone of over 100 lbs of weight lost in just over a year. That’s 12 inches around his waist!
I started slowly in September, as I didn’t want to just jump right into the the Intermittent Fasting zone of eating for 4 hours and fasting for 20. I worked my way up so I am now consistently eating within a 6 hour time frame, and fasting for 18 hours.
Since starting Intermittent Fasting journey, I’ve noticed a few changes (other than my weight loss, which I’ll get to shortly):
- My mental clarity has improved
- I’m not food-focused anymore (thinking about what my next meal will be and counting down to it)
- My skin has improved dramatically
- I have more energy – and use this to work out – usually while I’m in a fasting state, which, “old me” would have said is crazy.
- I no longer get the low blood sugar sick feeling, where I feel nauseous and dizzy. Ever.
Now, the weight loss:
I weighed in today and have lost over 20 pounds since November 1st (so, 3.5 months). For those of you just cluing in – that includes the Christmas Holiday, where I let myself enjoy the festivities, and didn’t stick to the fasting schedule. It’s really been a slow but consistent journey, where I’ve lost anywhere from 3.5-.2 lbs per week.
As a little extra motivation, I’ve been “competing” with 2 of my best friends, who are just doing weight loss however they know how. One of them has lost 6.5 lbs since we started, and the other 10.5. I’m by far the biggest loser – in a great way!
The best way to explain the Intermittent Fasting Journey:
I’m trying to get them on a fasting routine as well, but with no success, simply because despite me explaining it, and being literal living proof, they don’t believe it! I found this book, called Eat – STOP – Eat by Brad Pilon, that explains what it is, how to do it, and the benefits, that range far, far beyond simple weight loss. The book helped me to really understand how Intermittent Fasting works, and keep me motivated to keep going with it! Now, it’s just my lifestyle!
I’ll try and explain a bit of the science behind it here, but the book has clear and concise information!
Recent studies have emerged that have concluded that reducing caloric intake also lowers your basal metabolic rate, which slows your metabolism down, and therefor is the biggest factor for regaining weight. When you stop with your reduced calorie intake, you gain back the weight because your metabolism has slowed down. Ugly, vicious cycle!
With Intermittent Fasting, it’s been shown that it has very little – perhaps zero- impact on your basal metabolic rate. There are ways of also helping with this as well, such as resistance training, but it means that people who lose weight via fasting have a much, much higher record of keeping it off. In addition, people who fast and have a lower calorie input as a result, compared to people that are simply just on a calorie reduced diet, still don’t see their metabolic rate drop.
I’ll keep you posted how the weight loss and intermittent fasting journey continues – I have a trip to Las Vegas planned for 2 months from now, and I’m on track to drop at least another 10 lbs by then!