” That’s the stupidest diet I’ve ever heard of
I believe were my exact words when I first heard about Intermittent Fasting (IF). My thinking being that weight loss is a simple formula:
This is what all the experts seemed to be touting for the last several decades on shows like the Biggest Loser. My thinking went: TIME is not a variable in the equation, thus Intermittent Fasting makes no sense. Oh, how wrong I was!
I had years and years of experience proving that this formula is bullshit, yet I thought the issue was me. I wasn't good enough at implementing weight loss math. 2000 calories of cookie dough (+a few vitamins/fiber) = 2000 calories of broccoli according to the experts -- I happen to prefer cookie dough. The first time I officially became aware of the major flaw in the logic was in the summer of 2013 when I read Gary Taubes book, Why We Get Fat.
I loved his book so much that I sent him a super nerdy email that may have concluded with the phrase "Thanks for bringing bacon back into my life!" So embarrassing. And, just to be clear, I was not in the habit of writing fan mail to authors. This was the first and only time I've EVER done it. That's how much I loved Gary. And, still do.
And, he wrote me back! *Swoon* I digress. My biggest takeaway from his book can be summarized in this quote:
”We do not get fat because we overeat; we get fat because the carbohydrates in our diet make us fat. The science tells us that obesity is ultimately the result of a hormonal imbalance, not a caloric one -- specifically, the stimulation of insulin secretion caused by eating easily digestible carbohydrate-rich foods — Gary Taubes - Why We Get Fat
It wasn't until late 2018 maybe early 2019, that I came across fasting. Initially I dabbled in it. Doing a few 16-8s, then a few 24/36/48 hr fasts, and even once a 3-day extended fast, but it was all experimental and haphazard, nothing serious. Each time, while it was quite a challenge, I felt fantastic and was loving the results.
This New Years, my fiancé and I agreed to a "Fast 30" challenge: 30 Days of every other day fasting, it looks something like this:
- Day 1: Eat normally
- Day 2: Eat nothing
- Day 3: Eat normally
The big question that inspired me to take on this challenge is: could IF help me lose the extra ~40 lbs I'm carrying? I wish my intentions were more noble, I really do, but I want to be honest with you. For me, it was about looking and feeling great! And, yeah, if I happen to sleep better, destroy precancerous cells, and truly know God, that would be great too. But really, it was about getting slim.
Today is January 23rd, I’ve completed 11 fasts, since starting this challenge, and I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon!
My fiancé and I agreed to one modification after two weeks of experimentation. The weekend fasts were, well, ya know, getting in the way of our social life, so we decided to swap to a 4:3 fasting schedule. We now fast Mon, Wed, and Fri every week. I think for us this is a much more sustainable lifestyle.
Getting started was by far the hardest part! And, I still occasionally get headaches (had a really bad one last night) and hunger pangs, but each time we fast, it gets a little easier. And, I’m definitely already noticing results!
My intention with this blog is:
- To put my story out there, as it is unfolding, so that maybe it can help others and I can find other like-minded individuals to learn from
- Compile all the best resources I can find on intermittent and extended fasting
- Make fasting fun!
I have no idea if I will be able to achieve my goal through IF, but it feels great so far, and there is definitely potential!