I’m Battling the Quarantine 15 with 16/8 Intermittent Fasting – Here’s How It’s Going
It's 10:03 AM and I am inhaling a breakfast wrap. It's pretty much the best tasting thing I've ever eaten in my entire life - not because it's super tasty but because it has been 16 hours since my last bite of food.
This past weekend, I really noticed how the Quarantine 15 had caught up with me. For the past several years, I have been pretty strict with diet and exercise. I lost 50 pounds after my daughter was born and kept it off by making good decisions. BUT, I found myself boredom snacking because of my lack of routine. I found myself treatin' myself a little (okay a LOT) more because of the stress. I found myself loafing around watching a lot more TV because... well... I hate working out! So, I knew it was time to get back on the wagon.
There were a few basics that I knew already. I had to keep my caloric intake below my caloric output. My Fitbit tracks my movement and I use the nutrition calculator on the Fitbit app to keep up with my calories. I had to make healthier choices with my food. And, I had to set goals for myself and stick to them.
One of the goals I set for myself was fasting. A friend told me that it really helped her to not only lose weight but get her blood sugar under control. Just like anything else, there's a good amount of info out there to look at. Fads - "doctors" telling you that they can help you - and just like anything else, it's overwhelming. But I was determined to at least try this out.
I came across the 16/8 intermittent fasting plan. Basically, you only eat healthy food within an eight-hour window of time. The other 16, you drink water. It's safe and if you do it right, can help your body make positive changes like lowering blood sugar and reducing belly fat. So, I decided to give it a go. I mean, if Jesus fasted for 40 days, I can go 16 hours, right?
I'm on day four of my experiment. Here are my thoughts so far.
- I get up between 5 -5:30 AM so I start thinking about food at 8:30 and REALLY thinking about food at 9. I'm waiting until 10 AM to eat my first meal and I can tell you that there are 60 LONG minutes between 9 and 10. I'm so used to eating whatever I want, when I want. I had to change my mindset and be strong. And I kind of like the control I can take over myself and my urges. It empowers me.
- Forcing myself to wait has been hard and uncomfortable. But guess what. It makes me really appreciate food. Everything smells better. Everything tastes better. I am intentional with eating and I start thinking ahead of time about what type of food I should and want to eat instead of just mindlessly eating. BTW you can't binge junk and expect this to work.
- I'm only on day four so I haven't seen significant changes in my body except my stomach doesn't seem to be as irritated with me. I'll keep you posted.
- I'm drinking WAY more water than before. When I feel hunger, I take a big drink of water. I do have a coffee when I first wake up (I still have to live life, people!) But then it's water. And I went from drinking NO water in the morning to downing 32 oz before lunch. That's significant!
Now, if you have a metabolic or eating disorder or any other health issue - be smart. Talk to your doc. But if you are thinking about getting healthy, you should definitely give it a shot.