I’ve decided to blog about my weight quest in the hope that by blogging about it, it will keep me on the straight and narrow and more determined to have a positive outcome to this endeavour.
I started my new eating regime on 20 June 2017. This was the day after we came back from Amsterdam and I knew that I had to do something and fast! I wasn’t entirely sure which diet I was going to follow at this stage, I just knew I needed to eat less so I decided to just count my calories. Inserted my height, gender, weight etc into some app online and voila, it told me how much I needed to eat in order to lose. At the same time the boyfriend was urging me to start Banting as its always worked for him and he believes it’s the best eating plan one could ever be on. So after doing some research I decided to give it a go. The premise behind it sounded good – if your body doesn’t have any carbs to burn energy, it will turn to the stored fat in your body and start burning that. Sounds foolproof right?! And it kinda is – if you can stick to eating the correct amount of protein and fat. Unfortunately you have to eat a LOT of fat on this eating plan and I didn’t feel like that was working for me either. I like that there are no carbs, except certain fruit and veggies but trying to get the right amount of fat in meant eating a lot of meat and cream and cheese which wasn’t really working for me and I didn’t feel like I was losing weight. At first I didn’t worry too much about the scale, as I have enough clothes in my cupboard that don’t fit anymore and those are the true test. But yes, I wasn’t feeling much difference in those clothes either.
So during this time I am reading and researching and trying to figure out what will actually work for me and I find a term call ‘intermittent fasting’. Banting advocates it and I believe the 5:2 diet does too. It has been around for thousands of years, not as a diet but as a way of life. I am not going to go into the in’s and outs here – there is a vast amount of reading material on the internet – but this one struck a chord with me. For so long I have been eating every 2 to 3 hours worrying that I will feel faint and dizzy if I leave too long between meals. And if I did have longer breaks, I would feel like faint and dizzy. But that’s only because of the all the carbs I was eating. If eating a healthy, balanced, nutritious diet, people can fast for extended periods of time. It sounded crazy to me that there are people on the internet advocating only eating ONE meal a day!
Anyway, so I have started on the lowest one you can get which is sure to make a difference and that’s 16:8. With this one you fast for 16 hours and then ‘eat’ for 8. You don’t obviously eat for 8 hours straight but you have your food during that time. So my normal day is – you tend to work backwards on this one as it depends on what time you finish having dinner. Generally I have eaten by 7:30 so 16 hours later is 11:30. I eat what I guess we can call brunch. It usually consists of an omelette – 2 eggs, spinch, peppers, mushroom and cheese. Then a bit later I’ll have a bowl of fruit and yoghurt and then for dinner is a huge plate of veggies with some kind of protein.
I was crapping myself when I decided to do this, but at the same time reading about it, felt so right. The science behind it made so much sense to me and also I had been limiting my carbs to next to nothing for two weeks by then so I reckoned that I would not feel dizzy and faint if I waited 2 extra hours to eat instead of eating at 9. And I was right!!! It was SO easy! The most difficult thing for me so far has been not to have a snack AFTER dinner. I get peckish around 10 and then want to have an apple or something but NO – that immediately puts your body into receiving food mode again and so even just a little apple or a cup of yoghurt upsets it. But in the morning, those extra hours fly by and to be honest, I’m actually not ever technically starving when I eat, I just eat because I still feel in my head that if I don’t it’s wrong. I’m going to take a while to work myself up to fasting for longer – if at all. The change in mindset has been surreal.
I’ve modified it slightly now so that if I feel like eating a slice of health bread, or a sweet potato, or half a cup of unsweetened muesli with my fruit and yoghurt, then I do. For my body, I feel that some carbs are necessary – you know when you just know.
I am eating FAR less than I was and have completely cut out sugar, bad carbs, beer, wine – it’s all good, healthy food so I feel like I should have lost more in the time I have been on this diet – which is 6 weeks. For the first 4 weeks there was no change on the scale. I deliberately didn’t start an exercise regime because I wanted to be able to see the change on the scale and not get confused between losing fat and gaining muscle. Nada. I was feeling despondent. Then I read some more and most of the articles say that nothing will happen for at least 6 weeks and then the weight will just melt off. My clothes however, were feeling less snug – although I have not yet attempted to put anything on that I couldn’t fit into anymore.
I left the weighing in for 2 weeks and on the 6 week mark I weighed myself – moment of truth readers!!
The sad truth is that on the scale, I’m lucky if I’ve lost half a kilo. BUT on the upside – I went clothes shopping about 6 weeks ago and I found this amazing pair of pants that I liked. They were so amazing that I thought to myself I cannot buy these in a size 14 as I will lose weight and they won’t fit so I bought them in a size 12. They cost a lot of money and I thought if this isn’t incentive, nothing will be. When I bought them I couldn’t even button the top button!!!! Put them on this week and I can button the top button up – so yeah! It really is true about not getting on the scale but rather using your clothes as a yardstick. I still can’t zip them up or wear them but I’m getting closer!!! 🙂