Oh you have no idea how close I was to giving this all up, not because it’s hard but just because it’s tedious. But I am still going, and I’ve even given you some inter-fast updates too!
Tuesday 11th February – Day 9
Weight: 52.2kg (-0.8kg / -1.1kg total)
Struggled to sleep again last night; third night out of three fast days, it has to be related to the fasting. I’m surprised as I’m normally not too bad at going to sleep hungry, but I guess this is beyond hunger.
Woke up not particularly hungry, but really craving milky tea and a banana. I finished making the salad I had started making the night before, and savoured the liberty of being able to taste it as I seasoned.
As usual, eating in the early part of the day was tentative; portions were smaller, choices were more deliberate. As the day went on, however, I experienced a pretty voracious snack attack despite not being hungry. I know the whole point of the 5:2 diet is that it doesn’t matter what you eat on non-fast days, but I would prefer to see a diet making long-term changes to one’s attitude towards food, breaking the starve-binge cycle and banishing obsessive thoughts and food-guilt. But that’s just me.
Wednesday 12th February – Day 10
Weight: 52.3kg (+0.1kg / -1kg total)
Had a mammoth sleep so woke up not overly hungry, and surprisingly light after last night’s late night snacking. Well, I say surprisingly, but I’m not surprised; the longer I sleep, the lighter I am. I reckon if you took the too-busy-to-eaters whom the 5:2 diet typically appeals to, and helped them get a full night’s sleep and a lie-in twice a week, they’d drop as much weight on those days as they do fasting (not to mention the benefits their cognitive ability would reap as a result). But again, maybe that’s just me. A bit of pottering around and a light breakfast at lunch time, an easily satisfied appetite – and I didn’t need a day of fasting beforehand.
I’m worried that I’m getting overly negative about this whole fasting thing… I’m tempted to give up but I’m not sure I’d be able to live with myself as a blogger and trainer if I couldn’t get through 8 days of fasting in a month!
Thursday 13th February – Day 11 (Fast day 4)
No weigh-in today as I had to get up at 4am to catch a train; a 4am weight cannot be compared with an 11am weight!
14:00 – I was truly expecting the worst for today off the back of 3 hours of sleep and a 4am wake-up call (despite sleeping on the trains), but it’s actually not too bad so far. A few little tugs on the appetite-strings but nothing that couldn’t be washed away with a much-needed drink. Plus, although I am notoriously obsessed with travelling snacks (I don’t know why, but it’s a real issue!), not having the option to eat anything was actually a relief for this journey; otherwise, travelling so early would mean I’d have stuffed myself by 10am and throw everything out of sync. Thus, so far, so good (and I’m sure the toast and fruit spread and luxury hot chocolate at 11pm last night may have helped too!). Sitting with my granddad, sipping on a cup of blueberry tea which is surprisingly good!
15:30 – Couldn’t get rid of the early-morning dry mouth feeling, so had an electrolyte. Felt much better, now sipping on my second cup of green tea and feeling fine. Did my Lumosity brain training, a mixed session as usual, which so far hasn’t shown any real links to fasting.
17:00 – Finally starting to get hungry, but not really craving anything in particular which is odd. Thinking of having a piece of bread with some peanut butter – I hate the idea of then being limited for my “evening meal”, but I learnt last week that less time spent fasting is preferable to large meals.
18:00 – It is most definitely snack time! One thing I’ve learnt is that when trying to eat less, eat what you want, no excuses. Slice of rye bread and peanut butter it was then – unfortunately the peanut butter over here was slightly rancid so it wasn’t quite the taste sensation I was expecting, but I was committed. It was also Calvé brand which, although a delicious taste of my childhood, is higher calorie than my staple 100% peanuts tubs thanks to its added oil. But then, 500kcal is never going to equate to fine dining. And yes that is a sprinkle of cinnamon, because blood sugar.
- 1 slice (57g) Schneider Brot whole grain rye bread (112kcal)
- 10g Calvé peanut butter (66kcal)
- Total: 178kcal
Not actually too bad; 312kcal is more than enough for a satisfying “meal” over the next few hours. Finishing up with copious amounts of orange-cinnamon rooibos. This stuff is essential for a happy fast, in my opinion.
19:30 – Well, I could honestly quite happily go to bed right now and not worry about dinner. But as I can have dinner, why on earth not?
- 1 Granose meat-free burger (22g dry powder – 117kcal)*
- 1 slice (57g) Schneider Brot whole grain rye bread (112kcal)
- 90g spinach (26kcal)
- 0.5tsp olive oil (20kcal)
- Total: 275kcal
- Daily total: 453kcal
Honestly, I wasn’t going to share a picture with you, because it’s so uncolourful and uninspired, and my bread fell apart, and my patty wouldn’t conform to a patty shape so I had a pile of burger-flavoured mush. But this is a place for sharing, for honesty, and for sympathy and understanding, so I am going to go for it. Please don’t judge my cooking ability on this!
*As these things are notorious for slipping in stealth dairy, I checked and double-checked and triple-checked the packet, which lists nothing animal-based in either the ingredients list or the allergen list, but on looking up a link for the product I found that the “natural flavourings” contain cow’s milk, which is listed in the allergens. There is no mention of this on the packaging I have, so I will try to find out from Granose – if you know, please leave me a comment to confirm whether or not these are, indeed, suitable for vegans!
20:30 – If you guys know me at all by now you will know that I wasn’t about to waste those last 47kcal – and what better use for them than a rich steaming cup of cocoa?
- 1tsp (5g) unsweetened cocoa powder (16kcal)
- 1tsp (4g) coconut sugar (15kcal)
- 2tbsp unsweetened oat milk (15kcal)
- Total: 46kcal
- Daily total: 499kcal
And that is it for the day, folks! Now for a whole weekend of fresh French bread, leftovers crying out to be eaten, Speculoos spread, FRUIT… And who knows, maybe I’ll even go wild and spend my time tomorrow making myself one of those beautiful and healthy Valentines-themed recipes popping up all over food blogs this week, in true self-love fashion!