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Field Report: Intermittent Fasting!


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So, I have always had a high metabolism, and up until age 35 really had to make an effort to keep weight on. I got used to eating all the time, seriously physically hungry every few hours, etc. I just run hot, slightly overactive thyroid, etc.

 

Then my metabolism slowed down to more normal levels, partly from age, partly from less physically demanding work, partly from doing stuff to help the thyroid issue.

 

Eating habits didn't slow down quite enough to match metabolism, so inevitably, all my pants were too tight. I've tried various things to cut back the excess calories, lost and gained the same 5-10lb a few times.

 

Recently, I've been trying intermittent fasting. Starting by just no snacking after dinner, and skip breakfast. And holy crap, it is fine! It was a huge shock, because all through my teens and 20s I generally needed a big snack around 10a or I'd feel like I was going to pass out between a big breakfast and a bigger lunch. 

 

I wanted to try intermittent fasting just as an experiment, because I really hate fixing food, planning food, fretting over whether I am making "good choices". I figured it'd be brutal, not at all sustainable for me, but you know, for science, lets try.

 

It has been close to two weeks, only eating 12p-8p and I love it. I suspect it wouldn't work so well if I get back to doing a heavy physical labor job, but for my current life, it is great.

 

I'm even finding that I am tending more towards a 4 hour eating window (roughly 4p to 8p). I know what hungry feels like, so if I am not physically hungry at noon, I'll wait until I am. 

 

Normal day has been a moderately sized "healthy" prepped meal (mostly protein & veg), then a big dinner with family (whatever someone else cooked plus extra veg), then another prepped meal later, with generous carbs unless dinner was real heavy. Plus whatever snacks, but I'm pretty stuffed with the meals, so snacks aren't super tempting. I'll sometimes have a tiny (<50kcal) snack outside of that window, but not because I am actually hungry.

 

Working out near the end of the fasting time has been okay. For a heavy workout, I tried doing it right at the start of the eating time, after a small snack. I don't like doing anything more vigourous than a brisk walk when I have a full stomach, so the 12p-8p eating makes an evening workout inconvenient, and the 4p-8p eating makes an evening workout nearly impossible. But evening workouts are nearly always just procrastinating on my part (self-employed, flexible schedule) so I like the extra incentive to get the workout done early.

 

I'm not really trying hard to lose weight at this point, just experimenting. I'm eating as much as I want during that window, but this definitely removes 80% of my temptation to eat junk. No late night snack time free for all. No big breakfast of carbs plus fat with extra carbs on top. No drive-through while running morning errands. I am really suprised how much easier it is for me to just not eat, compared to the stress of trying to pick healthy options, especially in sub-optimal situations.

 

There were two snack-filled social gatherings during this past two weeks, and one family dinner of involving breaded-fried-deliciousness covered in cheese and gravy. For each of these, I included as much veg and protein as was practical, indulged in all the tasty things, enjoyed the company of family & friends, and then just didn't eat afterwards until I was actually hungry again, which was generally around 4p the next day. And for me, 98% of social meals with others are within 12p-8p, so there is no trouble there. (In the extremely unlikely event of a brunch date, I could just eat then. Maybe twice a year, no big deal.)

 

I really see a lot of potential here. This seems like it could be really sustainable for me.

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Joshua - Yoga Ninja Weasel #20: The Weasel goes on an Adventure!

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On 1/4/2022 at 4:12 PM, christine29 said:

I wondered how I got so thin back in my college days, and now I realized it was due to not eating for 12-14 hrs, that did not matter before but now it's called intermittent fasting!

Hahahaha this happened to me as well. My freshmen year I apparently was alarmingly thin according to my friends, but I still felt overweight and flabby. It turns out I was skipping meals and had a loss of appetite due to crippling anxiety from being out on my own for the first time.

 

On 5/22/2021 at 10:09 PM, Darth Yoga said:

I really see a lot of potential here. This seems like it could be really sustainable for me.

I'm also trying the intermittent fasting. Been going since the beginning of the year and I'm starting to see results. Skipping breakfast is definitely helping me to eat at a calorie deficit without feeling like I gotta say no to every food that I like. However, I do find that I feel less inclined to things that are clearly unhealthy after finishing a fast period. Yesterday, work catered with pizza. I love pizza, but I was craving something more healthy so I went home to eat with my family. I definitely get the feel that the fast just makes you crave less and also since you just just felt hungry for a longer than usual period and you know you're doing it for your health, it helps you to feel less inclined to just eat a bunch of crap after all that work.

"We Will Be the Gods We Choose to Be, Not Those Who Have Been" - Kratos

Active Quests:

18% body fat: ⏹️

14 Days Intermittent Fasting: ⏹️ 7 Days Intermittent Fasting: ✅

205 pounds: ⏹️ 210 pounds: ✅

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