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I F - 5:2 - 4:3 - Maintaining the healthy weight

(1000 Posts)
TalkinPeace2 Fri 01-Feb-13 16:59:38

This thread is for those who have been doing IF for quite a while and are now at or nearing their target healthy weight.

How do we experience fasts and balance a stable food intake while having little or no weight to lose?

How to we ensure that this WOE does keep us at the healthy weight long term rather than revert to yoyo games?

I have now been at the same weight for a month. I'm happy with that. I'm also still enjoying the 24 hour fasts because of the clear mindedness I get during them.

How about you?

Iwearblack Fri 01-Feb-13 19:09:24

Hi TiP2. I have been 5:2 for 5 months and have lost 16lbs with another 7 or so to lose to get a normal BMI. Have worked up to 20 hr fasts and feel good doing this. Have never been a 'dieter' as have always turned my nose up at quick fix or weird eating patterns but this WOE speaks to me and makes sense.
Much more interested in cooking good food now too ....
It will be weird to be in a position to not want to lose weight and do this WOE purely for health benefits .... Would like to hear how other people aim to do this or are doing it already ..

Snowkey Fri 01-Feb-13 20:07:13

Ha! Have just posted on the main thread that I'm on maintenance mode now. Sugar is my weakness, if I can stay away from sugar I can maintain easily. My Bmi has been between 20-21 for a year now.

TalkinPeace2 Fri 01-Feb-13 20:43:56

My BMI peaked at 22.4 and is now 20.5
so, what do you get out of fasts .... was talking to uber fit yoga teachers about it today .....

Iwearblack how far do you have to go to not be able to pinch an inch (as they said in the 1970's) - the only flabby skin I have left is stretch marks and as I hold 9st for longer, the economics of having that 'peeled' grow ....

Ezzza Fri 01-Feb-13 21:02:54

I'm still a stone and a half away from target yet but think this thread is a good idea as I am planning to continue with 5:2 once I get there so I'm going to lurk on here for a while.

TalkinPeace2 Fri 01-Feb-13 21:13:42

Welcome Ezzza
I have No intention of explaining acronyms on this thread.
It is for the experienced to swap notes.

And yes, talking to one of my Yoga teachers who has fasted at least once a month since she was 15 made me feel like a western softie!

FastFeeder Fri 01-Feb-13 22:56:59

My BMI has gone from 22.5 down to 19.5 on this regime. I wasn't officially overweight, but I was really unhappy with my middle-aged spread! In the last two years I took up cycling and got myself fit (probably for the first time in my life!), but the layer of fat around my middle refused to budge.

5:2 has worked for me in a way that exercise on its own just didn't. I've now lost 10kg/22lb since August and am at a weight that feels much more 'me' than where I was before. It's like I got my younger self's body back. I'd been buying (North American) size 12 clothes: last week I bought myself a new pair of jeans. Size 6!

I've never dieted in my life and this doesn't feel like a diet, it's much more like being in tune with what my body needs and giving it a break to recharge now and then. I'm much more relaxed about skipping a meal here and there and I'm fairly sure I'll continue to do that into the future.

Snowkey Fri 01-Feb-13 23:17:35

We fast primarily for the reduced cancer/Alzheimer's risk. It doesn't deliver weight loss for me unless I put the brakes on feed day eating but it does allow me to maintain with very little effort. We tend to tolerate the fast rather than enjoy it, I mean it's a relief each week when we finish them, would be nice at some stage to enjoy the feeling, but after 6 months we're not there yet!

Snowkey Fri 01-Feb-13 23:19:32

fastfeeder that's a brilliant loss - you must be thrilled to get into a pair of size 6's - I'd be dancing around the shop!

Breadandwine Fri 01-Feb-13 23:43:10

Thanks, TiP2 this thread is a good idea.

I've been maintaining since about October, flirting with 6:1, going back to 5:2 and now doing a modified version of 6:1.

This involves a 24 hour fast on Monday, followed by a <600 cals meal. Then on the Wednesday I finish my 2nd 24 hour fast of the week and have a normal meal to end the day.

I did this for the first time this week and I went a bit mad with the unaccustomed freedom in the evening. I don't stress about over-indulging - I just miss one or two meals on the next day if I have.

I'll try this for a couple of weeks and see how it goes. I do like the feeling I get from fasting - both the slight euphoria/extra energy I get, and the knowledge that health benefits are accruing.

I'm still losing a little weight - I'm toying with the idea of adding another notch (making 4 in total! smile) to my belt. So I'm consciously giving myself bigger portions on my non-fasting days.

Cheers, B&W

NatashaMousse Sat 02-Feb-13 01:26:43

I've been extra lean for decades and for at least that long have been interested in fasting but never had sufficient incentive to take it up. Seeing the Horizon programme in October offered an easy way to give it a go, along with a lot of health reasons. I jumped in with a 500-cal day and started researching like mad (IF and fasting in general). Quickly I concluded that longer calorie-free periods were more beneficial. My second fast was 34 hours with no calories. It was not enjoyable but the results were astonishing - I felt better physically, mentally, psychologically, spiritually than I had in years (maybe ever) - and lasted the entire week. I've repeated that (30 to 36 hours, depending on circumstances) once a week since the beginning of November and usually toss in a 16-hour fast later in the week. Like Snowkey ("tolerate the fast rather than enjoy it, I mean it's a relief each week when we finish them"), I still find the fasts to be a bit of a chore, but I'm not going to give up the sense of well-being they've produced.

Along the way I've learned that I can survive without breakfast (I don't recall ever going without prior to this, as I find them one of life's pleasures). I've also become convinced that fasting promotes healing and repair better than anything else.

For over a year now I've been tinkering with my diet and even had a short spell of trying meat after eating vegetarian/pescatarian for most of my adult life. Fasting and all the related reading I've been doing have added more fuel to the experimenting. I'm eating better than ever. Processed food and sugar are down to a minimum (pretty much limited to dark chocolate, which I refuse to give up), while healthy fats are up. I'm rediscovering the pleasures - and burdens - of preparing meals from scratch.

All in all, fasting has been a big boon, far more beneficial than I ever imagined. The issue for me is finding the best way forward. In order to avoid losing weight, I've been eating more on non-fast days, but that's mucking with the "satiety meter" that's served me well for so long. I guess the problem is that I haven't yet accepted my own version of 6:1 as something I will do for the rest of my life, so there's some resistance to adapting to it fully. In part that has to do with the fact that going without any calories for a long stretch still has some unpleasant aspects, particularly being deeply chilled. But it is getting easier. While I could try a variation, like B&W's 24-hour method, I'm reluctant to mess with success and have a gut feeling that additional hours, particularly if they occur during sleep, magnify the benefits. I plan to keep going with my current scheme for some months (feeling colder may be a real plus when summer comes) and keep researching. At some point I'll get blood work done and see if the numbers have improved along with everything else.

I'm very glad you started this thread, TIP. I look forward to learning how others are making fasting a permanent part of their lives. And maybe before too long there will be more research to help all of us work out our optimal regimens.

Snowkey Sat 02-Feb-13 07:57:46

Before Christmas I managed to do the 5:2 without losing any weight. I experimented with eating sugar again but lost the plot some what and have decided whatever dietary approach I choose, sugar has to get the big elbow. Will attempt to only eat puddings when we eat out but in Feb we have at least 6 meals booked into the calendar, which sounds like a lot of pudding and I may have to detox again, if the craving start kicking in outside of restaurant situations. We continue to limit the starches on our plate, having the occasional potato and the very occasional pie.

We are very much a cooking from scratch household, as my dsis always says processed food is such a waste of calories. Food is something we feel passionately about and that's the thing, when we fast, we don't have to worry about the content of our food, we just focus on getting the very best flavour. I'm tinkering with the humble sausage roll atm, which can be mind blowing when made with all butter puff pastry and homemade sausage meat.

virginposter Sat 02-Feb-13 09:04:35

I'm here too. Still have 7lbs or so to go but am switching my mind to the future now. I've decided that I'll concentrate on losing that last bit then I want to give maintenance as much thought and effort as I did to get to that point.
I've also been thinking for a while that soon it will be time to firm up whatever wobbly (not fat) bits are left. grin

Aftereightsarenolongermine Sat 02-Feb-13 09:36:25

Not officially on this thread as I've still got a long way to go but I just wanted to say congratulations to you all for getting here.

I very rarely eat processed food & will probably out myself now, but dd1 is allergic to nuts, dd2 to eggs & lactose & me to gluten! So actually processed food has always been a big no because I cannot be bothered to read through all the ingredients!

snowkey a friend of mine makes homemade sausage rolls, but her magic ingredients are grated apple & Dijon mustard. (Probably outed myself again) smile

Snowkey Sat 02-Feb-13 10:47:11

Intriguing, someone else suggested apple - my issue with sausage meat is that I hold no love for dried herbs and I find the so called premium sausages are a bit try hard, over-flavoured. I have some fresh sage and I'm going to fry it in butter with onion and try binding the mixture with egg and maybe oat bran rather than breadcrumbs. Pork, onion, sage, butter and pastry - I can't go that far wrong, can I?

catsrus Sat 02-Feb-13 11:06:22

I'm here too - though feeling a bit fragile after 3 very large glasses of wine with a friend last night blush.

In the past I've lost weight but not transitioned well to maintenance ( ie fallen off the wagon big time) so will really put some effort into getting it right this time. Tempting though it is to want to lose more I would rather stay at this weight if it's more sustainable long term (9 st 7lb)

Laska42 Sat 02-Feb-13 12:46:52

Hi im here too ... smile
maintaining at just over 10 ..and eating what I like . roast tatties again today !! .

thanks TIP for this new thread ..

Laska42 Sat 02-Feb-13 13:04:16

YAY TIP2 ditto to no acronym or basic principles explaining....wink its great that so many new people starting 5:2 but we were getting a bit swamped.

It seems strange that I'm at 'maintenance' i've never got there with any of the diets i've tried , but then this is not a b diet but definately a way of life for me now..

I'm happy to be here now ..

kiwigirl42 Sat 02-Feb-13 16:02:10

Hi guys, hope I can lurk over here with you guys too. Will keep me on the straight and progressively getting more narrow!

I just can't get over how much this changes how I feel about food. It like having a licence to kill - I know I can now eat anything I want without needing to feel guilty, which has made me in turn a lot more selective about what I eat. It mindfulness in action I suppose. Actively choosing to eat rather than mindlessly scoffing crap.

I add grated apple and chopped up dried apricots to sausage meat for rolls and stuffing. mmm.

sarajaynevz Sat 02-Feb-13 16:30:16

Great thread! I've been doing adf since last October and I'm now 6 pounds away from goal, (have lost 29.5lbs). I'm starting to transition from adf to 5:2 for maintenance and maybe eventually do a 6:1 ratio down the road. Right now I'm mentally struggling with the idea that I'm almost at goal. I've gotten so used to being in 'weight loss mode' that I can't wrap my mind around not working on this part anymore. It's actually causing me a bit of stress right now confused

Laska42 Sat 02-Feb-13 16:51:38

B&W I'm just making my 2nd batch of crumpets! last weeks were good , but not as 'holey' as expected .. This week I'm trying Dan Lepard's recipe ( he says my batter wasn't thin enough) . ..

Anyway , my maintenance strategy ...

I'm now doing what could be described as 5:2 and three quarters ..

Sunday: I eat what I want for breakfast , but then no lunch and only stir fry veggies for dinner (so probably about 900 cals max) , then I have 16 hrs total fast

Monday: 500 cals split into 2 meals.

Tues: I try to go without breakfast and have about 750 cals split into lunch and dinner, 16hr total fast

Weds: eat normally but healthily so if I go out for a meal it would be that day . (I might have some wine but do try not to drink at all during the week)

Thurs: 500cals two meals breakfast and dinner 16hrs fast

Friday: no breakfast and a light lunch usually soup and salad.

Friday evening to Sunday lunch: I eat what I want . .. this includes roasties, bread, cheese and wine.. ..

I'm feeling like this was the eating diet I wanted all along.. no deprivation at all.. grin

I'd like to drop another half stone, but right now this is what I'm doing .I've plateaued at this weight for a few weeks now, but have lost a 21lbs on this so far, BMI 26.0 to 22.4, which is just great . So at the moment I'm concentrating on embedding the new eating habits in it in and will have another strict month , before I go on holiday , probably April time

TalkinPeace2 Sat 02-Feb-13 18:02:17

Well I just got back from an amazing lunch at a vahy posh country house hotel (that was free!!) and it was interesting to be served what, on the plate, looked like tiny portions of food but that were so flavourful that after five courses I do not feel the need for dinner.
Might have a glass of wine though!

For me, because DH still has a way to go on weight loss, fasting will remain part of the routine but I'll play it by ear whether I actually do lose any more. With warmer weather and eating more salads it might be easy, it might be hard.

Lovely to have a quiet corner to chat to the stalwarts :-)

mumrunner Sat 02-Feb-13 18:31:49

Can I join you? I only have 4lbs to get to target and I am now thinking on what to do afterwards. I'm never in maintenance situation before it was always trying to loss the excess weight. I'm going to lurk and post now and then on how I got on.

TheCyclistist Sat 02-Feb-13 19:16:31

Hi smile

Thanks for the new thread TIP2 . Hello all, just marking my spot as it were and catch up with you all after the weekend.

Happy fasting...

welshmill Sat 02-Feb-13 19:25:41

I'm still about 11lb of my target weight of 8st but I'm not stressing to get rid of it as I feel pretty relaxed around food and want to keep it that way from now on. If you'd told me in August(10st 5lb) when I started this WOE that by January I'd be 8st 11lb I wouldn't have believed you. I haven't been under 9st for over 15 years and I still can't quite come to terms with how (relatively) easy this has been compared to all the other diets/exercise regimes I have tried in the past. What's more, unlike those diets, I don't feel bored or dispirited or beaten by it. 5:2, where have you been all my life!

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