Intermittent Fasting Before and After – My Experience
There are three different body types, ectomorph, endomorph, and mesomorph. People of the same weight can have wildly different metabolisms. People have different reactions to food – with variations in allergies and inflammation.
And yet, one diet is supposed to solve the problems of everyone at once?
That doesn’t make sense.
But all the fad diets out there want you to believe it. What I’m going to talk about is how I lost 50 pounds in a little under 3 months. Do I think you can as well? Absolutely. But I won’t promise it.
Because I found the secret to weight loss, and it’s not a catch-all solution. It’s a mindset.
Hey there! My name is Kimmy G – I’m a newly single mom with 2 girl that live with me – currently working to take care of both.
Me on the beach with my husband…who is no longer in the picture (literally and metaphorically).
Life has been pretty busy for all of us in my house – since the father of my children decided that he 1. No longer found me and my willingness to stay by him unattractive and 2. Found a thinner, younger model and had been seeing her behind my back for a year.
I’m not going to go into too much detail on that front, because I know that you guys aren’t here to hear my sob story. I just wanted to contextualize the messy break up I went through, so when you hear that I fell into depression and turned to wallowing in pity and binge eating, you understand why.
Iwasn’t in this state for too long. Just a few reasonable… months. I packed on a lot of weight, and frankly became a shell of my former self (inwardly). Outwardly, I packed on a LOT of pounds.
I constantly felt unhealthy and depressed, with little motivation to do anything. Basically I was just forcing myself through the motions, and worse, whether or not I realized it, I was eating myself into an early grave.
Finally – I snapped out of it when one my boys (bless him) approached me one night. He was working up the courage to ask me if I was pregnant again – and was worried about what that would mean for him and his sister.
He had innocent intentions, but that snapped me out of my funk. It was time for a change – and a quick one. I needed to become the mom my kids needed me to be, and to get back to my old self.
One of the first things I did was scour the internet for fitness programs/eating guides that would help me. Eventually I came across the 21 Day Fix, but… let’s just say that it did NOT work well for me.
Following that experience, I turned to something that I’m sure many of you have heard about. Intermittent Fasting.
Discovering Intermittent Fasting
For those of you moms that haven’t heard – Intermittent Fasting is a eating plan that specializes in refining when you eat to a certain “meal window”. The most common form of this is the 16/8 intermittent fasting, and you can see my own detailed success story here.
16/8 means that you fast for 16 hours, and have an 8 hour eating window. If you’re working out (which I highly recommend you do, but NOT with the 21 Day Fix) you want to either skip a meal entirely and work out fasted, and only take BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids) before your workout, or you eat a small meal and then workout after it digests.
FYI – I prefer to workout fasted, and take these BCAAs before my meal. Once I eat, I find that I get lazy throughout the day, but working out fasted makes me feel like I can almost feel the fat burning. Placebo? Maybe, but it worked for me.
To some, 16 hours of fasting sounds impossible. It is hard – at first. You’ll adjust after 1 week, sometimes sooner. But the benefits are undeniable. I thought so too, but when you take into account that you sleep for 6-8 hours, and then you’re probably not eating immediately upon waking up and immediately before you go to bed, it gets a lot more manageable.
Honestly, when I first started out, it only took me 3 days to get adjusted. I used information I learned about Intermittent Fasting guide from the book Eat Stop Eat, which I recommend for any other beginners.
Although I now follow a different eating schedule, I still use the information learned daily. For example, when choosing WHAT to eat.
Anyway, there are plenty other variations on intermittent fasting, some people do 20/4, other people do entire 24 hour fasts, but I stuck with the basic method. Once you devise your eating window, you want to try and keep it stable throughout the weeks.
A good window for a normal person is 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM, or 12:00 AM to 8:00 PM. With 10 AM, you are skipping breakfast, but can eat brunch, and can squeeze in an early dinner around 5-6. With 12-8, you skip breakfast/brunch entirely and make lunch your first meal.
What I Found…
Following the diet plan laid on in Eat Stop Eat made it easy for me to adjust, and before long I had a good understanding of the basic which a
llowed me to wing certain things – every once in a blue moon I would do a longer than 16 hour fast (my record is 24 hours), or I would start making my own recipes.
I began to consult other websites and resources about what was “good to eat” less and less – because I had a good understanding of how carbs really worked.
Carbs are a fuel source – you want them after working out fasted (which is typically the plan with intermittent fasting, although you are allowed to eat before if that works better for you) but you do NOT as much of them them on rest days or lower intensity days. On those days, you go low carb, lower carb, or no carb.
These details, learning the basics, and following the Intermittent Fasting Protocol to the best of my ability produced visible results. Really! Visible results! I could see the changes in my body.
And you can too. Here is my Intermittent Fasting Before and After:
I was surprised in the early weeks at how quickly I acclimated to the lifestyle change. Though, I won’t take all the credit. I’m a pretty visual learner, so I consulted several youtube videos on how to tackle the fasting. I will add some example videos below.
Coming off of the failure of the 21 Day Fix tempered my expectations. I wouldn’t try and force myself with anything if it seemed like my body couldn’t handle it. At the same time, I wouldn’t go too easy on myself either.
My goal was to follow a diet plan that would work for me – something that I could stick to long term. No yo-yo dieting, no fad workout plans, I wanted a lifestyle change that I could stick to. And, thanks to Eat Stop Eat’s Intermittent Fasting protocol, along with Jen Ferruggia’s Bikini Body Workouts (I STRONGLY recommend adding a workout to the diet if you have the time) -I have to say I think I ended up finding that.
- Restricting your eating window actually opens up some of your food options. If you’re like me, there’s only so much you can eat in a certain amount of time. During your eating window, you feel full. So much so that it carries over until you’re ready to sleep – so you’re not fighting off starvation before bed. You’re fine.
- Working out fasted, once you get used to it, feels amazing. There’s no brain fog or fatigue which I get when I eat big, so you’re free to push yourself in the gym.
- There are multiple ways to tackle Intermittent Fasting, so you can pick a plan that works best for you.
- This is the perfect way to diet if you have a decently busy schedule.
- BCAAs. You HAVE to take them before you workout fasted, or you run the risk of burning vital muscle while you workout fasted. I recommend you use this brand of BCAAs, but just keep in mind that this is an extra cost on your bill. Luckily, it lasts for a long time (about 3 months) so it’s not too bad.
- Working out fasted can be hard for people to get used to. You are allowed to eat before a meal if you prefer that style, as long as you don’t eat more than 20% of your daily caloric intake for the pre-workout meal.
- The less busy you are, the harder it will be to fast. If you don’t have actual tasks you can busy yourself with, I can see this being hard to stick to. I basically forget I’m fasting when I’m busy working, which enables me to fast longer than normal.
QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT HAVE:
What’s the Intermittent fasting diet plan 16/8?
I read that book before I got started, so frankly there may be things in it that you absorb that I didn’t. The more information you have, the less likely you are to fail!
Do you see results after 1 month?
I ABSOLUTELY did, and I highly doubt that anyone wouldn’t. Going from freely eating whenever you want to literally fasting 16 hours at a time for a whole 30 days has got to have some significant impact, wouldn’t you think?
Do you have an intermittent fasting meal plan example?
I made an example up for people. Click here.
What do other reviews say about Intermittent Fasting?
I find that the best “reviews” come in the form of people’s personal experiences. Click here to see other 16/8 intermittent fasting success stories!
Even though you use a different time table, Is Eat Stop Eat worth the money?
YES YES YES! It has fantastic reviews, and is pretty much the GO TO BOOK on how to properly Intermittent Fasting, how it works, and why it works. There’s so much useful information in there, so I really can’t recommend it enough.
If you’re going to drastically change your lifestyle, you need to understand the science behind it or you’re probably going to snap back to old habits. That’s why I keep recommending Eat Stop Eat – the less of my readers that fail, the better. I want us all to win in the end.
What did you do besides Intermittent Fasting?
Well, that’s another story! I used the Bikini Body Workouts program – which I think is a lesser known and completely underrated program. One of my guest bloggers actually mentioned it while doing a review of the PiYo Workout! If you’re a beginner losing weight and want a program geared towards women, you ABSOLUTELY should read this review of the workout programs!
Overall, I am beyond happy about Intermittent Fasting. But you NEED to combine it with an improvement in your diet, or your results won’t last!