The 5:2 thread number 33 - Counting down to Christmas (and NOT thinking about the impending chocapocolaypse. Yet)

(1000 Posts)

The continuing thread for those of us following the 5:2 fast or other forms of fasting such as 4:3, ADF, or daily 16:8.

The 5:2 diet was featured on Horizon in August 2012 and essentially requires you to fast for 2 non-consecutive days per week. The other 5 days, you can eat normally - or approximately your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE - see explanation below). 4:3 is the same except you fast on 3 days in the week. Alternate-day fasting (ADF) is just how it sounds; you fast every other day. 16:8 is another form where you stick to only eating in an 8 hour window each day, therefore fasting for 16 hours each day.

By "fasting", we mean that we keep our calorie consumption very low, around 500 calories on average for a woman, 600 for a man, on those days.

You'll find on these threads we use a number of acronyms. If you're new to the threads, or Mumsnet in general, they might not make much sense.

WOE/WOL = Way Of Eating/Way Of Life. We use this term instead of "diet" as many of us see this as something to do in the long term.

MFP = My Fitness Pal, a website or app many use for keeping track of the number of calories they're eating.

TDEE = Total Daily Energy Expenditure, quantifies the number of calories you burn in a day. This measure is best estimated by scaling your Basal Metabolic Rate to your level of activity. TDEE is critical in tailoring your nutrition plan to desired fitness goals. Here is a link to a calculator to help you figure out how many calories you should be eating in a day.

NFD = Non fast day

NSV = Non scale victory

Michael Mosley has a website to accompany his book on the subject. Please go check it out, as he's the whole reason most of us are here!

Lurkers and new starters: please just jump in and post - you'll find a lot of support here and we’re a friendly bunch.

Here is a list of links to get you started with this way of eating. Please let us know if you find a new article or some other information online:

All our previous threads can be found by browsing through the fasting section of the site.

Another thread which breadandwine has started is a good resource for some of the tips and links that get lost in these big threads. In addition to sharing links, we try to condense some of our top tips for fasting there. Keep in mind, we all do this differently, so these are just tips, not rules. This might be a good place to catch up with us if you're feeling a bit lost!

eatriskier’s thread has some lovely inspiring stories which are worth checking out if you want some motivation to get started or keep going through a plateau. Please add your own too.

frenchfancy has a recipe thread over here, please post any low-calorie recipes there so they don't get lost in these bigger threads!

If you've been at this a while and are moving on to maintaining your goal weight, there is a thread here to discuss that.

Here is the link to the BBC article regarding Michael Mosley's findings, which was featured on Horizon.

There's a link to the aforementioned Horizon programme here.

A blog post here gives some of the scientific explanation for why this way of eating helps you to not only lose weight, but improve your all-around health.

This link nicely demonstrates that there are many body ‘right’ body shapes and types, because what we are actually aiming for is low body fat for fitness and health.

A Telegraph article which comments on the diet and gives a brief overview by Dr Mosley himself, very informative if you're just starting. (I highly recommend this for an overview)

A study discussed here gives commentary specifically addressing the effect of this diet on obese people (both men and women), with regard to both health and weight loss. ("After 8 weeks of treatment, participants had an average 12.5 lbs reduction in body weight and a 4 cm decrease in waist circumference. Total fat mass declined by about 12 lbs while lean body mass remained relatively constant.) it also mentions "Plasma adiponectin, a protein hormone that is elevated in obesity and associated with heart disease, dropped by 30%. As did LDL cholesterol (25%) and triglycerides (32%).")

Something to consider if you are currently your ideal BMI: this appears to suggest the benefits for women at a lower BMI might not be seeing the same health benefits that are found on men at their ideal BMI.

A BIG THANK YOU to all who have been contributing. Most of us are learning this way of eating as we go along. All of the links above have been posted by others in our previous threads, and they've been very helpful.

A HUGE THANK YOU to Greeneggsandnicht for putting together all this info and resources into one concise OP text, much appreciated by so many 5:2ers!

Come join us, and tell us about your experiences with this diet!

TheLeastAccomplishedBennetGirl Mon 16-Dec-13 08:25:49

Marking place in sparkling new thread!

NFD today, but miniFD yesterday and full FD tomorrow for me.

On the big push for the weigh-in before next Tuesday

Good luck to all for the coming week

postmanpatsreindeer Mon 16-Dec-13 08:32:13

Thanks betsy

More flowers for betsy

ELR Mon 16-Dec-13 09:43:32

Thanks marking place.

MrsFlorrick Mon 16-Dec-13 10:21:54

Thanks Betsy thanks

Chocapocalypse! I do hope it doesn't happen. I will be forced to frenzy on cheese only. Sob.

Place marking for later.

pandarific Mon 16-Dec-13 14:39:28

Hellooooo. First day fasting here - terrible time of year to start, but I really want to lose some weight, so hey ho. My story is that I'm 5'9, 11st, and though it doesn't sound overweight, when I'm naked I've got way too much flab and have 30% body fat. 30%! Not good. I'd like to get down to 20% body fat, so I've got 10% of my fat to lose. My main reason is vanity tbh - I'm 29, no kids, but my body doesn't look at all like I want it to. Though I've also got polycystic ovaries and have diabetics in the family, so would like to get my fat % down for that reason too.

I did do 5:2 for a couple of months during the summer but got exhausted and jittery and just all round felt like crap (full time job and was freelancing in the evenings at the same time), so I stopped. I was doing the 30 day shred at the same time and think my body just gave up - too much stress and the fasts just exacerbated things.

Anyway, I really want it to work this time, so I'm going to try to focus on some gentler exercise this time round - I have a kettlebell which I bought but is gathering dust... maybe tonight??

Good luck all!

Southeastdweller Mon 16-Dec-13 16:05:48

I love the thread title grin

flowers Betsy and welcome pandarific

Hi pandarific fsmile Welcome - this thread might be a bit slow for a while as we're busy using up the tail end of thread 32. We've got some PCOS sufferers on here somewhere (I forget who, sorry…) who've lost with 5:2.

Yoga's great for toning, smaller hand weights are good too - I'm no expert but I think it's quite easy to do yourself a bit of an injury with the kettlebell. I'll defer to resident gym experts bigchocfrenzy, bsshbossh and TiP for more advice in that area.

inamerrymuckingfuddle Mon 16-Dec-13 16:10:58

OMG I've been so busy you've gone and got a shiny new thread! Love the title!

V quick one, FD today, so far so good (nothing consumed except tea and coffee) and NSV - told I was skinny today (admittedly by a teenage girl!). I'm away with work for a couple of days this week, including overnight, so must be 'good' before and after to compensate.

Out tonight but will catch up later on with all your shenanigans

MrsFlorrick Mon 16-Dec-13 20:41:55

Hi pandarific. Welcome.

Try easing yourself into it. Do 16:8 or a few mini fasts first. I did that because I couldn't face a full on fast. I can now easily.

I've been doing various Jillian michaels workouts while fasting. It's not been a problem. Perhaps ease yourself in with fewer JM workouts per week to start with?

ToffeeOwnsTheSausage Mon 16-Dec-13 20:49:03

I didn't realise I was the last post on the previous thread. Quite fitting really grin.

As I was saying, does anyone else get dizzy on FD? I feel it at the moment and can't tell if it is due to tiredness or lack of food.

pandarific Mon 16-Dec-13 20:56:02

Cheers guys. Will do my best!

TalkinPeace Mon 16-Dec-13 21:05:37

Pandarific
Welcome, and surreally this is actually a great time of year to start because you will go through the season with awareness
Just remember to drink LOTS of water and try to cut sugary drinks right back
and yes, Yoga is great .... I'm rather a fan.

TurkeyAtYuleHoHo Mon 16-Dec-13 21:23:01

Helloooooooooooooooooooo Festive thread!

Thank you to the yummy mummy that is our BetsyBell for lovely new thread and great title!

Just love that word! fgrin

FunnyFestive was this one. Can't really vouch for it yet as I only received today and have yet to make it go round without the aid of my hand!

How does anyone do a zero calorie fast? Honestly, I don't think I could do it. I was so looking forward to my dinner! I will have done 24 hours at 7pm and be at 400 cals. If I can get to bed tonight on 5-600 cals I will be ecstatic!

My experiences were that for the first month at least, I was the same. I found it harder to get to evening meal time (mine has only been once a day from start because I knew I would prefer it that way), without snacking. The few times I did snack, I regretted it as soon as I got to meal time and had fewer cals to play with. Not to mention it waking the hunger beast. I would then also spend so much time trying to get as much of a meal as poss for my allowance. Was a lot of effort and a lot of time. But I did feel very proud each day I succeeded.

I did find though, that as time went on, my appetite reduced gradually and now, I have reached a point where I can go the whole day on a few blk coffees, green tea, hot stock drink and by evening I'm satisfied with a milky hot drink, square of choc/apple. Totalling 250 cals.

And I find this EASY!

So stick with it. It may just be an early days thing. But I think most would tend to agree that the longer they're on this woe/wol, the more their appetite shrinks anyway.

As weird as I am, I can't help with your weird symptom though unfortunately!

Peplum thanks for birdy! ahhh! and fgrin for pre mating ritual lol!

Do you have to call him ambassador? fwink

TurkeyAtYuleHoHo Mon 16-Dec-13 21:24:43

Forgot to say....

Hello to Pandarific!

Not2bObvious Mon 16-Dec-13 21:29:21

Marking my spot, thanks Betsy for lovely fresh thread.
Oh yeah and I made today tomorrow fblush In order words, I lost the plot and ate rings about myself, or in keeping with Turkeys new toy, I hula hooped about myself fgrin
Figured it out though! Time of month approaching so my resolve just isn't there, I can't be blamed...

BsshBossh Mon 16-Dec-13 22:02:03

Yoohoo everyone grin.
thanks to Betsy.

LOF complete, managed 20 hrs and broke fast with sub 250 cal grapes and soup. Two NFDs now but am going to try and keep them clean.

DinoSnores Mon 16-Dec-13 22:13:05

LOF? Not sure what that one means. Length of fast?

So that's Fast 1 and Day 1 done. I had had nothing since 7pm yesterday and then had a good dinner of chicken, roast veg, even a couple of potatoes that was carefully worked out. I've even saved some calories for now as I go up to bed, and have come in right on 500.

Next fasting day will be Wednesday as I am going out on Thursday evening, but I'll think Monday and Thursday will be my more regular days.

TalkinPeace Mon 16-Dec-13 22:19:04

Hi DinoSnores
LOF = liquid only fast
so in my case I had Sunday lunch and then no food until supper tonight - lots of tea and water but nothing with calories in or chewable.
I'm used to them now and 24 hours rattles past
and it means I can have a big supper and sleep well

BsshBossh Mon 16-Dec-13 22:20:20

Well done Dino! Any of your colleagues doing 5:2? And what do they think of you doing it?

EarSlaps England Mon 16-Dec-13 22:26:17

Just marking place. Might fast tomorrow, will see how I feel in the morning.

<Back from the gym and finds this gabby lot have already used up the old thread>

Welcome Dino

LOF (Liquid Only Fasts)
Can be "zero"-cal (or technically up to 50 cals total fast)
OR any liquids totalling up to 500 cals for the FD (600 for the chaps)

Zero cal FDs

I don't think what I'm going to eat, because I know the answer is "nothing".

I like to do zero-cal Sat or Sun, so that I don't get tempted by work canteen or colleagues waving food around. If I train hard though, I may only be zero-cal for 18 hrs, then have a shake.

On an FD, once I start eating I feel hungrier (500 cals is a small course within a BigChoc meal, never a meal)
hmm
So, on non-zero FDs, I usually have 2 protein shakes and a cocoa, i.e. LOF.

TurkeyAtYuleHoHo Mon 16-Dec-13 22:42:20

Well done Dino! It's a great feeling when you can get one done on a Monday - gives you maximum flexibility for rest of week.

I'm excited for you! This woe (way of eating) is addictive and sustainable. Even when I struggle, I know that it's not the fasting, but me/my mood/cycle etc that is.

I did not manage my usual fast today so will be doing it tmw. Can't wait for the buzz to wash over me again come the end of the day and following morning!

This thread is not accepting new messages.