Sunday, December 4, 2011

Allergy investigation

For the last 6 months or so I have been struggling with a rash on my face that comes and goes. It varies in intensity from a small patch at my temples to the whole side of my face from the corner of my eye to the hairline, all the way around my forehead and to the other side. One time my face swelled up so bad that my eyes were almost swollen shut.

It also spreads to my body during really bad flareups. It kind of looks like eczema when it is on my face and chicken pocks when it is on my body. It has been super frustrating because it is terribly itchy and won't seem to ever go away completely.

I have been to two doctors and two dermatologists. They all say the same thing, it is an allergy. To what they have no idea. And they don't seem to interested in trying to find out either. They have prescribed: antibiotics, high dose prescription antihistamine, cortisone cream, and even steroid cream.

The steroid cream worked like a charm at first, but I know it is really bad for me and has terrible side effects that I want no part of. I used it at first and had relief but only for a while and then the rash came back. Basically the cream only makes it go dormant but inevitably the rash comes right back every time. And now it doesn't seem to work at all.

I asked my doctors for some tests that could help determine what the cause of the allergy was but they hummed and hawed and didn't seem very confident that I would find the source that way. They say a patch test could help find the culprit but that they can't really do the test until the rash is cleared up to get an accurate reading, and I never seem completely cured so that is difficult. They say that I could have developed an allergy to something that I have used or eaten for years but now all of a sudden my body doesn't want it anymore. Because of that, they say that they may never find the cause. Their final thoughts? You are going to just have to live with this for the rest of your life...people develop allergies, too bad for you...

Well, I was not going to be ok with that. So I decided to go to a naturopath and see what they had to say. The doctor was confident that she could find the source of the allergy and fix my problem. That was the first thing she said, now that is much better to hear than what the medical doctors were saying...I hope she is right.

So she first did a blood test that tests for over 90 foods that I could have an allergy to. She thinks that if I have some kind of sensitivity or allergy to food that it could be weakening my bodies defences against whatever is causing my rash. So the food allergy itself may not be the culprit but it may be making my body unable to fight it off as easily.

So, I started with the test. It came back with only one allergy, just one out of 90, everything else had no issues at all. Sesame...I have an allergy to sesame. Interesting. Three days a week or more, I eat a big salad with lots of yummy veggies and chicken and seeds. I always put a handful of sesame seeds and I use an asian sesame

I eat quite a bit of sesame actually. It is something that I really love, the smell of sesame oil, the taste of the seeds. I even put the seeds on my food at home and when I eat stir fry I put a good helping of seeds on my food then too. I love sesame oil in salad dressing and so on...So apparently the sesame is weakening me to this rash. So, now, no more sesame for me and the naturopath has given me this terrible tasting oil to drink and these pills that are supposed to help me get rid of this rash...She said I have high levels of bacteria and yeast in my body that is causing the rash and exacerbated by the allergy to sesame seeds.

Well, at this point I will try anything. So I have been off sesame for a little over a week now and have been drinking this terrible oil and taking these pills...we will see if this works.

In the mean time, I have been changing all my products, shampoo, soap, makeup etc in an effort to try and pinpoint exactly what this is. Sesame may be it but I am not completely sure. It has been over a week since I had any and my rash is as worse as ever.

I am anxious to have it clear up this time because in 11 days I am going to be in the bahamas, and I have to wear a bathing suit...I don't want to look like a chicken pox freak on the beach. I need to get rid of this annoying rash!

I am not a person who has sensitive skin. I have rarely ever had rashes and besides hay fever I have had no allergies until now. Before intermittent fasting I had really bad acne on my face and shoulders and back that cleared up completely once I started intermittent fasting and never came back. I have been so enjoying my completely clear skin for the first time in my adult life. And now this rash has taken that joy away from me. No more clear skin, back to the terrible red patches and marks that I suffered with for all those years in the form of acne...I won't just sit back and say oh well, just going to have to live with this. I am going to keep trying to find out what this is and fix it.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Over-eaters do well with intermittent fasting

Angela inspired me to write this post.

Intermittent fasting is a great way to control over-eating. I am an over-eater. When I eat, I like to eat until I am stuffed to the brim, almost sick. Before fasting that translated to being stuffed to the rim almost all day long. Eat breakfast, then a snack, then a treat, then a big lunch...oh so full, then some dessert, then a snack, then a big dinner...oh so full, then dessert, then a snack, or two, then bed and again the next day...

Now I eliminate two thirds of all of that!!! Now I eat one big satisfying meal, a dessert and a snack. I fast the rest of the time and think about all the food I am going to have the next day to help me complete my fasts. I use my weakness as a strength to help me over-eat just once a day which brings me into normal territory.

Us over-eaters have a problem that is really hard to fix. We need to accept what we are. Know the issue and work with what we have to fix it. This is true for all problems, we all have to just work with what we have. My love of food and of large portions is how I can fast. Thinking about my next big meal keeps me focused and able to obstain.

My over-eating is what helps me to not eat at all...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Patience = Freedom

People often ask me why I don't "just eat small healthy meals" instead of fasting to lose weight. They say that if I can have the will power to not eat at all why can't I use that will power to not eat the foods that can make us fat. Use that will power to avoid those foods all together.

Seems reasonable someone who has been skinny their whole lives. To someone who doesn't struggle with food addiction or eating emotionally or dieting. For someone who hasn't yo-yo dieted their entire lives.

The reason those of us who need to lose weight, need to lose weight in the first place is because we struggle with eliminating certain foods from our diets. If we didn't, we wouldn't be overweight in the first place. It is hard for us, they don't understand how hard.

The reason my "will power" is so strong during fasting is because anytime I feel hunger or think about eating I know that when I do eat, I can eat what I want. Anything I want. I can eat foods that are forbidden when on a diet. That is how I do it. I think about the meal I am going to have. A BIG meal with lots of wonderful, favourite choices. If my choices were to have a hamburger and fries every time, I would still lose weight with fasting.

But here is the even better part about fasting...

I don't choose a hamburger every time...I don't eat all junk everyday...not because I am making a "healthy choice" but because my body asks for healthy things too because it wants it and makes me want it too. I do eat junk too though, because I also like junk. I like french fries and chips and chocolate and cookies and cake. I eat those, I eat those regularly. I also have a ton of veggies in a day and love fruit. I enjoy healthy fats and protein. I have a well balanced diet but I also get my treats.

That is how I am able to fast. I think about my treats. I know I will get them. I know they won't make me fat. I enjoy them and celebrate that I never have to give them up.

Patience can = Freedom too.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Fasting = Freedom

People think about fasting and think, I couldn't do that, it would be way too hard. I get really grumpy when I don't eat. I feel light headed. There is no way I could go that long without food.

They forget that they fast everyday...and don't feel light headed at all. When they sleep. After dinner until the morning when they eat breakfast, they are fasting, usually for about 12 hours. And in the morning, they feel normal, they aren't gnawing their own arm off. It is because the body is used to this. It is used to this routine. So it doesn't send all these signals to the body screaming for food because it knows it won't get it, they are asleep.

That is what happens when you incorporate a schedule of fasting into your life. When you normally eat, that is when you start feeling hungry. That is when the body starts sending signals telling you that it is almost time to eat...the rest of the time, nothing, just the same feeling you always have when you are in between meals, calm, happy body on a schedule and doing fine.

Fasting is really easy once you get on a schedule. Granted, getting on that schedule can be a challenge because it takes some time for your body to adjust. However, the results you will see on the scale if you stick to it and are strict at first will definitely motivate you to keep going. In my first week of trying this lifestyle I lost 8 pounds! That was more than enough motivation for me.

Now that I am adjusted I feel free. Free because I no longer have to count, measure, eliminate or suffer. I eat the foods I love. Tonight we are having Indian food, complete with samosas, naan bread and butter chicken. On a diet, I wouldn't be able to do this. I would be suffering either from guilt from doing it anyway or jealousy from watching everyone else do it...


That is what you gain. Freedom for the rest of your life.

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Intermittent Fasting Closet

I am out of the closet...the intermittent fasting closet.

It is interesting, I was so insecure and worried in the beginning about what people would say. For good reason... people don't understand it because it is a very different way to live than what they are used to. But that doesn't make it wrong or unhealthy or bad...

The best advice I can give about coming out of the intermittent fasting closet is to take your time and learn the program. Give yourself time to get results and compare how you feel now that you have taken fasting into your life. Do research and read about the benefits as well as feel them for yourself.

Once you feel confident that this is the lifestyle for you, just mention it where appropriate. If someone asks you if you would like a cookie and you are fasting, tell them, no thank you, I am fasting right now. See what happens. Most times they don't even ask, but if they do, tell them the condensed version of what intermittent fasting is. I say:

"I eat within a 5 hour window of time each day and the rest of the time I fast."

Questions will come after that of which most are really easy to answer. I have written a post that outlines most of the regular questions that I get here, and if you get someone who hounds you and tells you how bad it is for you, just tell them that it works for you and everyone has to do what works for them, we are all different.

And then brush off the negativity. Do what you know is working for you and what you know makes you feel good.

I find that now, after being "out" for so long, everyone in my life knows my lifestyle and 99.9% of them are supportive. That doesn't mean that they are suddenly going to get on the fasting ban wagon but they are polite and considerate. I have co-workers coming around with treats sometimes and they ask, "Are you fasting right now? I have a treat if you want one..."

People have to accept who you are and what you do if they see that it makes you happy.

The key is, don't try to push this lifestyle on them, don't get defensive when questions happen, and brush off the negative comments with a confidence in your decision.

It is sort of like religion. We don't all believe in the same God or have the same ideas about faith but that doesn't mean you hide your beliefs from those around you who don't believe the same thing. You show confidence in your beliefs, be open to those who have questions and know inside yourself that what you believe in is true.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Preparing for Vacation

I have booked an amazing vacation in the Bahamas for just before Christmas! I am so excited to actually relax on a vacation! Hubby and I usually TRAVEL not VACATION...we explore, take photos, walk 12+ hours a day trying to see and do everything we can...

We have never done a vacation where we just relax on a beach and unwind before. It will be an adjustment. We are going to a Sandals all inclusive resort. Of course this means unlimited food and alcohol any time I I have to get prepared for that. I hope that I can just keep my 5 hour window but I know that on vacation, that is more difficult for me. I went on a cruise a while back and did ok but didn't stick to my window perfectly. I had a couple of days were I ate two meals and a couple of days where I extended my fast. So, I won't beat myself up if I am not perfect but I do want to go in with a plan.

My plan is to stick to dinners only but allow a couple of days where I can have two meals. I will also extend my window by a couple of hours once or twice to enjoy some late evenings.

Before my vacation I am going to be extra strict and stick to my window but also try to avoid eating extra treats and snacks during my window. I am going to do a 64 hour fast before and after the vacation as well to help get me back on track once my fun is over...

I have been doing really well with my fasting and have been able to continue with my all day fast once per week and my 64 hour fast once per month. But still no movement on the just stays exactly the same every time. But I am not discouraged because I am happy with how I look now too. Staying the same most definitely beats gaining any day!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Intermittent Fasting E-book

There is a new free e-book on the market. This one is written by a nutritionist who was a big believer of the 6 meal a day way of life. He tried intermittent fasting and now also thinks that there are some real benefits to that lifestyle as well.

I don't think that one is better than the other or one is right and the other is wrong...but I do believe that one is easier than the other...

Nice to have a nutritionalist onboard, since they seem to be the ones who are always stressing how important it is that we eat constantly...

Check out the article and download the free ebook here.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Being Busy Helps with Weight Loss

I have been really busy at work lately working on our big annual National Conference. Being busy at work always helps me avoid snacking. I have been really good this past week and even completed another extra long fast of 64 hours last weekend.

Still on my unbreakable plateau but feeling confident that I am still on the right track to meet my goal. I have been eating really healthy and feeling really good and so that is half the battle!

I am back into my fall schedule of pottery all day every Sunday and so that also helps with my fasting because I do my all day fasts on Sunday when I am in pottery class. Being so busy in class always helps me complete an all day fast because I don't even think about food until around 6 pm. After that it is no problem at all to continue my fast until bed and the next day I eat at noon so it's a snap!

This year I am taking two pottery classes. The regular on Sunday but also signed up for an evening class on Tuesday nights so I am sure that will contribute to me maintaining my schedule with fasting as well.

Really looking forward to trying out these new pottery classes: Crystalline Glazing and Creative Extruding. Very different than anything I have done in the past and with a new teacher too so I am looking forward to learning lots of new techniques.

Today I am fasting until dinner when I plan to have break-fast at about 7pm of Thai food and then it is off to a comedy club with some friends for a good laugh.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Interesting Article

Take a look at this article on how to eat yourself happy. Intermittent fasting is one of the suggestions.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Using a Long Fast to Correct Eating Mistakes

I am in the middle of a long fast, planning to end tomorrow at dinner time which will make 48 hours.  Fasting for an extended period is an excellent way to even the score and correct some eating mistakes. Last week my husband was out of town to be with his family after his sister passed away.

I ate foods that I are not part of my regular routine. More carbs and less veggies. I usually eat a big salad and a good amount of fruit with little to no carbs 5 days a week and only indulge in more extravagant foods on the weekend. Last week I ate lots of rice and bread and pasta, which is why I probably had much more cravings than usual.

So today I am using the extended fast to correct those mistakes and detox the body in preparation of going back to my regular eating habits. I am drinking lots of water and tea to help cleanse and I am really looking forward to eating my big salad again!

The real key to any lifestyle change or long term successful diet plan is to always go right back to your healthy routine again after a stumble. Don't use the stumble as an excuse to just give up and call it a day. That is why those skinny, healthy people you know who have never struggled with weight a day in their life are thin. It isn't because they never have treats or bad weeks or indulge, it is because, for the most part, they live a healthy lifestyle, always returning to that routine after the stumble.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


I have been struggling much more lately with wanting food out of my eating window. This has really not been that difficult an issue for me in the past, I usually find that I can refrain when I am supposed to. I usually struggle with over eating during my window, but lately, I have just wanted food more when I am supposed to be fasting.

I am going to try harder to keep my schedule. Stress always plays a part with my eating I notice. We suffered a loss last week, my husband's sister passed away suddenly in her sleep and so I have been worried about my husband. Food offers comfort for me and so I have to keep that in mind during this time.

I have been doing well incorporating my longer fasts into my schedule despite my current struggles and this gives me hope that I can keep on doing this. I have been intermittent fasting for over a year and a half, and I so I know that I will never go back, I just need to figure out how to control my trigger points.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Extended Fast

I am on one of my extended fasts and feeling great. Today is day two of fasting and I plan to have "break fast" at noon tomorrow which will be 64 hours.

The scale is holding strong at the same number but I have been feeling slimmer lately. People are noticing that I look slimmer to, so it is possible that the yoga I have been doing has been slimming me down without affecting the scale.

Yesterday I did yoga in a fasted state and I felt very focused and great while doing it. I love doing yoga while fasting, I have much more patience.

Come on scale! It is time to drop!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

On a Diet

"Are you still on your diet?"

This is a very common question that people ask me. It always throws me off a bit. I have been living this lifestyle now for almost two years. I am not on a diet. I never really was. I guess when I started I thought of it as another diet that I would try to see if I could lose weight. But since the first week, I have never felt like I was on a diet ever since.

Diets don't work. Plain and simple. I don't care what kind of diet it is, how healthy or unhealthy the variety. They just don't work.

I know what you are thinking. You are thinking, "But I lost 30 pounds on the atkins diet, that worked." Well sure, it may have worked for a minute. Until you went "off the diet." That's why people always ask that question. "Are you still 'on' your diet?" Diets don't work because diets are not maintainable for life. And in order for a diet to "work" you have to lose weight and keep it off for the rest of your life.

Only when I stopped dieting did I stop struggling. That is why when people ask me that question, I am always so thrown off. Because I associate the word "diet" with "struggle"

and I am not struggling anymore.

Intermittent Fasting = FREEDOM!!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Fasting on Vacation

Well, I am back from my cruise to report how it went fasting on a non stop, floating food buffet!

It went pretty well. I stuck to my 5 hour window about half of the cruise. The other half I had two meals instead of one. Not too bad. I did, however eat tons of rich food and lots of desserts. The food was pretty excessive on the ship, they even had a huge "Dessert Extravaganza" one night at 11pm that consisted of an entire room filled with tables full of all kinds of desserts, cakes, pies, puddings, tarts, cookies, pastries, chocolates and to top it all off, two chocolate fountains and a cotton candy machine. Pretty crazy!

I was feeling pretty bloated and terrible after it all, in fact, I was out at a store the day after and a woman asked me when I was due!!! I could hardly believe my ears. I told her that I wasn't pregnant, and she said, "oh, I was going to congratulate you." I said, "Yah, congratulations for being fat!" I hope she felt like the idiot she is. Who asks that?! Don't people know that unless you actually see a baby's head crowning you don't assume someone is pregnant??

But, despite all that, with my 64 hour fast before the cruise and another 64 hour fast after the cruise, I managed to LOSE a total of 1 pound. Pretty impressive I think considering....

I am back to my regular new and improved schedule and yesterday had my wonderful salad, some fruit, an egg and a slice of wheat free bread. I plan to have the same today and tomorrow have some stir-fry.

I am feeling pretty confident that the scale will keep going down and I will start to see the path to my goal getting shorter and shorter! I am going to pretend that pregnant thing never happened!!! Geeeeze!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Fasting Success

Today I broke my 64 hour fast at noon! I felt so great making it to that last hour that I didn't even rush to the lunch room, but stayed at my desk and finished up some work for 10 or 15 minutes before heading in to eat.

Yesterday, near the end of my long fast I did yoga. I have never felt so focused. It was magical. I really do enjoy the side effects of long fasts, clarity, calm, accomplishment. I lost over 5 pounds in two and a half days. Hopefully at least 2 pounds of that will stay off. I know that if I keep to my plan and continue to do these long fasts once per month that I will reach my goal of 135-140 pounds and stay there! I am so excited!

When I broke my fast today, I was a little concerned that I would overeat, since that is an issue with me. But, I am happy to report that I only ate the food I brought for the day and didn't go overboard or eat past feeling full. I had a big salad with spinach, cucumber, cabbage, broccoli coleslaw, chicken, feta, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, croutons and dressing. I also had a hard boiled egg and a slice of wheat free bread. Then later I had some watermelon, blueberries and cherries with a few squares of chocolate.

I am so happy today!!! Looking forward to continuing on this new path and seeing results!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Long Fasts

Today is the beginning of my new schedule. I have started with an extra long fast. Since next week I am on vacation, on a cruise, where eating is the main event, I feel I need two extra long fasts this month. One just before the cruise, and one just after.

I have been fasting since 8pm on Sunday evening and will break my fast on Wednesday at noon, making my fast a total of 64 hours. I will then have my regular lunch of salad and fruit with a slice of wheat free bread and some chocolate (I plan to be controlled, to eat my food nice and slow, to savour it and not overeat).

Next week while I am on my cruise, I still plan to fast 19 hours every day only I will break my fasts at dinner. I am sure that I will be eating much more than normal though as there are regular 5 course meals on a ship with indulgent desserts everywhere you look. I am going to enjoy the cruise but eat within my 5 hour window and try to make smart choices. Once I am back I will do another 64 hour fast and hopefully the two long fasts will balance out any over eating I do while onboard the ship.

So far I feel great during this fast, I find when I have made a decision in my mind to not eat, then eating is not an issue. It really highlights to me how much of this overeating is "in the mind" and I am sure that if I can figure out how to "just decide" not to overeat, I will be successful. Just got to figure out why I can't "just decide".

The schedule should really help to keep my fasts regular. I am really excited about this new plan and I feel confident that it will be what helps me reach my goal once and for all!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fasting Schedule

Today I decided it is time to make some changes so I can get to my ultimate goal of losing a total of 80 pounds. So far I have lost just over half of that. The changes I have made in my life so far have gotten me half way, but I have now levelled out and hit an unbreakable plateau. Now it is time to kick it up a notch so that I can reach my goal.


I will continue to fast 19 hours of the day and eat during a 5 hour window most of the time.

I will eat lunch and will avoid wheat completely having only salad and fruit with a slice of wheat free bread. I plan to have a small amount of chocolate as well so I don't feel deprived. I really enjoy my salad and LOVE fruit so this won't be difficult for me, I already do this anyway, so no big change here.

I will buy my lunch, probably a veggie stir-fry with rice, or sushi.

I will eat dinner out and enjoy an indulgent meal but make smart choices, salad instead of fries, no cheese, no appetizers.

I will cook a nice meal at home.

I will allow this schedule to shift as needed to accommodate celebrations or vacations but will always get right back to my routine once the celebration is over.

Any desserts will be low calorie options like angel food cake, yogurt, low fat puddings etc. probably only Saturday & Sunday when I eat at home.

I will continue with my all day fasts once per week of 36+ hours.

I will add in an extra long fast once per month of 60+ hours.

I will continue with yoga three times per week.

I will stop eating the following foods:

French Fries
Extra Cheese
I bring slices of cheese to eat with my lunch or snack on slices of cheese. I will stop doing that and won't add cheese to sandwiches etc.

These changes should greatly reduce the amount of calories I have in a day.

I feel like these food changes are going to be easy to incorporate because most of these foods are foods I can take or leave. Slices of cheese were just an easy snack that I felt was healthier than having cookies or chips or something like that.

Chips and French fries might be a challenge but I hope that if I try to eliminate them completely and occasionally struggle with that, at the very least I will greatly reduce them from my diet.

Once pottery begins in the fall, I will switch my cooking at home night from Sunday to Friday and do my 36+ hour fast on Sundays instead. This will mean I eat my salad Monday-Wednesday and have my take out lunch on Thursday (of course this is all not set in stone, just my way of keeping a routine to always go back to if I have to adjust to fit events in my life now and then).

In order to keep on schedule with my fasting and to ensure that I am strict with my long fasts, I have created a calendar. This should make it easy to follow and keep me accountable. It also helps to visualize when a long fast is necessary to help correct any indulgent eating that might happen during a vacation or event. I have organized my fasting days around these events.

I am looking forward to reaching my goal! I know I can get there!






Friday, July 29, 2011

Getting Control

I have been trying to do the 2 hour window with little success...I ate past my window a couple of days this week, even past the 5 hour window. I think it is just stress but I have to get my eating window back under control.

Today I did well, I am waiting for my window to open at 5pm today and we are going to have some burgers at Red Robin tonight and then later have some wine with friends. I will keep my regular 5 hour window for the weekends but next week I am going to try again on the 2 hour window experiment.

I would like to keep it to two hours Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and do a full day fast on Mondays. Then have a regular 5 hour window Friday and Saturday. Hopefully this schedule will help me get back on track.

Aside from this, I do feel happy with the way I look in the mirror lately. I find I look thin, and don't feel bloated or fat lately at all. I think yoga is helping with that. I have really been enjoying yoga, I go three days a week and always look forward to it and feel amazing after class. It is a great little break from the grind of life too, to just focus and breathe.

If I never lose the last 30 pounds, I will be happy with that I think. It would be great to reach my ultimate goal though but I am not obsessing about getting there. I am just going to try to get my overeating under control, continue with my yoga and see how it goes.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Fasting Advice

Thank you so much for all your comments and advice. I am going to take a little bit from everyone of you. Carmen Theresa, thank you, I totally agree with you that self acceptance is a big factor, and not judging myself when I overeat, yes there is always tomorrow!

Breaking the momentum, great advice, I will keep that in mind when I am in my eating window. Scott, avoiding starchy carbs, very good advice. I notice that the more of those I eat, the more I want to eat.

And shortening my eating window will be the biggest thing I can do to ensure success, a lot of you have suggested that. Thank you to my Fast 5 Group on Facebook who have also given me great advice on how to stop the over eating, and to Paula who is now trying just one meal per day which I think is a great idea.

I plan to follow the above advice, avoid starchy carbs as much as possible, break the momentum and take a break, shorten my eating window to 2 hours 5 days per week and 4 hours 2 days per week, eat just one meal and one dessert, and not judge myself if I am not perfect, there is always tomorrow!

Thanks again everyone, I am so lucky to have such great support from a group of people who truly understand what I am going through, invaluable.

Wish me luck!!!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


I still struggle with overeating. I know this is the reason I have been on this plateau for so long. I am eating the amount of calories I need to eat to maintain this weight. Maintaining is good, I just want to maintain at a lower weight.

When I started this process I had 80 pounds to lose. I have lost almost 50 of that. I still have a long way to go and even though I have found my "diet soul mate" I still struggle with the thing that got me here in the first place. I have a food addiction and I always overeat.

I am sure this is why intermittent fasting has worked so well for me, it is easier for me to eat nothing than to just have a little bit. But, once I start eating I have a really hard time stopping within my window even though I am full, extremely full sometimes. I really want to work on this and try harder. It is just that this feels like the hardest thing in the world sometimes. It is so weird though, even I don't understand how I can go for 48 hours without eating anything yet when I am eating, I can't stop myself from having another snack.

It is all in the mind. I have just made the decision that I am fasting and therefore, eating during that fasting window is just not happening, because I have decided. I have to find a way for that to happen in my eating window too. When I am full, I stop, no discussion. I have to make a decision that this is what I am going to do. But how? When is it clear that a person is full? There is so much room for error here. I could talk myself into believing that I am not quite full yet.

Maybe I need a more clear cut indication of when it is time to stop? It is so tricky...because how do you help an addict not overdose? Any suggestions?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Working out for weight loss

I often wonder how we are all so misinformed about so many things in the diet and exercise industry. I think it is mainly because people create these myths to help themselves make money and then they are repeated so many times by people who seem to know what they are talking about and so we believe them.

It only makes sense once you actually think about it, that what they say cannot be true.

If starvation mode was true, how are people who are actually starving so skinny, skeletons actually. Anorexics, poor starving children in Africa etc...If starvation mode were true they would look fat.

The same is true for silly things like "abs of steel" videos. Use this workout video 20 minutes a day and you will have abs of steel! How is this actually possible? If all the person changed was doing this video 20 minutes a day their stomach would actually get bigger.

Think about it. Their diet stays the same, they don't burn fat any other way, like through cardio exercise or fasting, and they are going to get a flat stomach from doing sit ups? NO.

Just doing sit ups will work out your abdominal muscles which will increase their size. When you work out a muscle you make it bigger. That is why body builders have such big arms, they get the muscle bigger by working it out. If you change nothing else and don't burn the fat away that is on top of your ab muscles, your stomach will look bigger with just working out your abs because you are just increasing the size of your abs under your fat.

If you want rock hard, six pack abs, you need to burn the fat away that is on top of them. We all have a six pack under there, it is just waiting to be revealed.

Unfortunately, you cannot isolate the area in which you want fat to burn away over others. Fat will burn away in the way the body wants it to, which is usually not the area we want it to. If your stomach is the area that is always the biggest, your stomach is probably the area that will lose weight last. Fat tends to burn off in the order in which it was put on, from last to first. So if you gain weight in your stomach first and your face last, then your face will lose weight first when you start burning it.

Doing crunches or squats will not speed this process along and somehow allow your body to jump to that area first. You cannot make muscle burn the fat around that area, it doesn't work that way.

Burn off the fat using an actual fat burning method like FASTING or CALORIE restriction. Add in some cardio to help kick it up a notch, Then, your muscles will be visible without all that fat on top of them.

Monday, July 4, 2011

No Diet Guilt

This weekend was a really fun long weekend, it was Canada Day last weekend and it is the 4th of July celebrations in the states. I know I ate WAY too much this weekend is so hard when our lives are so centered on food when we are having fun!

I ate in restaurants tons and had lots of wine. I ate outside my eating window on Saturday and was really bad, having fast food at 3AM after coming in from a night out watching live music at a fun lounge.

It was fun, but now it is over, back to regular old day to day eating schedule...which is another reason I love intermittent fasting. Yes, I was bad this weekend, but NO I don't feel complete guilt and I haven't beaten myself up and thrown all my goals out the window. I just know that I will go right back to fasting for 19 hours every day, eating low carb three-four days per week, doing yoga three days a week and enjoying life with a smaller body.

I know this because, this is my life. There are lots of people I know who are skinny and have been their whole lives. Just because they are thin, doesn't mean they never enjoy a burger at 3am, or drink too much wine one night or have too many desserts one day. They still do these things and stay thin because once the fun is over, they go right back to living their lives like they did before, following whatever healthy lifestyle they live that keeps them thin and healthy.

I have found my way of life and I know that one weekend of over indulgence is not going to take that all away from me.

Live your life, enjoy your celebrations, and get right back to your healthy lifestyle when the fun is over and you will be just fine!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Fasting and Detox

I have noticed lately that my skin is not looking as good as it usually does. I have a pimple...haven't had one in ages and rarely get any at all since I have started intermittent fasting.

I have not been doing as well with my all day fasts that I usually do on Sundays because pottery is on a break for the summer and I find it harder to fast on Sundays when I am at home and doing things with my husband and friends. I really realize that my long fasts are a part of my schedule and help keep the scale in the right range and help me detox whatever it is that have caused my skin problems in the past.

I need to to a small adjustment to my schedule for summer just like I do when I am on vacation. I will now do my long fasts on Mondays at work rather than Sundays until pottery begins again. I think this will help clear up my skin, and keep me feeling good.

The beauty of intermittent fasting is that it is so flexible. You really can just asses how your schedule is working and adjust it to fit your lifestyle. In the fall when pottery begins again, I will switch back to Sundays. When I am on vacation I can move my eating window to evenings...all of these changes make it easy to keep on track with fasting unlike most diets that are really difficult to incorporate into our everyday lives.

Since I missed my fast on Sunday and it is now Tuesday, I am going to do my long fast today and into tomorrow, breaking my fast at dinner on Wednesday which will be a total of 36 hours. I am off work on Thursday and Friday because of our Canada Day holiday, so we have a fun weekend planned of camping. I look forward to enjoying a roasted marsh mellow over the fire on Wed night!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

A book?

Thinking of writing a book on Intermittent fasting...what do you think?

Lifestyle Change

Lifestyle change is not as easy as it sounds. You can't just wake up tomorrow and decide to change your lifestyle.

"Today I am going to change how I eat, how active I am, what foods I like and the portions I problem." Uh, does anyone else see a potential issue here?

It is like trying on shoes...if you buy those really cute ones that make your calfs look fantastic but hurt like hell and make you bleed, what are the chances of you wearing those shoes every single day for the rest of your life? Chances are you will wear them on a hot date or to your high school reunion or that wedding where your ex will be and then they will sit in your closet for the rest of your life untouched.

Trying on lifestyles is the same thing. Keep trying pairs on until you come across that really cute pair that look amazing and are SO comfortable. Just wait, try one at a time, don't rush it for that wedding next week. Take your time and the right shoes will be found if you just keep trying them on one pair at a time.

Little by little, try new things, give them a chance, one at a time, until you incorporate it into your life because you really enjoy it. That is how a new lifestyle is born. You can't rush it in time for summer.

Question everything

Intermittent fasting opens our eyes to just how much we consume and how unnecessary it really is. It makes us feel better than we have ever felt and we start to question everything we have been taught. It makes us understand just how we have an obesity epidemic on our hands and frustrated that the answere is so simple yet so difficult at the same time because intermittent fasting is so different than what the diet and nutrition industries have been selling for so long. 

Keep questioning and keep discovering the truth and together with the rest of the IF community maybe we can start to make a difference and free people from obesity!

Friday, June 24, 2011

What is Starvation Mode?

We have been SO mislead and have completely misunderstood the science behind Starvation mode. When physical trainers or dieticians say it we automatically believe it because they are the "expert". But they are also just repeating what we have all somehow misunderstood and repeated to everyone we know who is on a diet. Lets take a real look at what Starvation Mode actually is.

Starvation mode as we know it is a myth. When we think of starvation mode, we think that when we skip a meal or go on a low calorie diet, our bodies go into "starvation mode" and start storing everything we eat as fat because it thinks it is starving, thus causing weight gain rather than weight loss. People in our society also have a very strange idea of what starving is. To them, starving can be as little as skipping a meal or even a snack. Actual starvation means cutting the total caloric intake to less than 50% of what the body requires per day for an extended period of time (meaning weeks and/or months). So skipping a meal or snack is nowhere near starvation. 

Also, starvation mode doesn't cause weight gain, not even close. Research shows that at no point does the body stop burning body fat during fasting or even during extreme starvation until the research subject hits a rate of approximately 5% body fat. So, if we have body fat to burn, our bodies will not gain weight, but continue to burn body fat for fuel.

What does happen in starvation mode is your metabolic rate drops (after several weeks or months of less than 50% of your recommended daily caloric intake). Which could explain why there may be a misunderstanding that the body would gain weight because we are told that a slow metabolism means weight gain. However, the slow metabolic rate associated with starvation mode is also misunderstood as outlined in the below quote from this article:

"Lyle McDonald explains it this way: 

In general, it's true that metabolic rate tends to drop more with more excessive caloric deficits… But here's the thing: in no study I've ever seen has the drop in metabolic rate been sufficient to completely offset the caloric deficit. That is to say that cutting your calories to less than 50% of what the body needs per day leads to a reduction in the metabolic rate of 10%. Starvation mode you say. Well, yes. But you still have a 40% daily deficit."

This means that you are still so far under the amount of calories that you should be eating that you will certainly continue to lose weight and not gain it as we would be led to believe.

Intermittent fasting is not a starvation diet. People who practice intermittent fasting generally eat near, if not above their daily required calorie intake and so are no where near starvation mode, something which as we understand it, doesn't exist anyway. Furthermore, studies show that intermittent fasting actually increases the metabolic rate, so that would put us well out of "starvation mode danger."

Intermittent Fasting & Health

I found this article online that was SO interesting and really backs up the results that I have experienced with intermittent fasting. I have experienced not only an improvement in my appearance and weight but also a noticeable improvement in my health and how I feel on the inside. Blood test results also show remarkable improvements in my cholesterol levels. My doctor is thrilled with my improved health and has encouraged me to continue with intermittent fasting. 
My favourite quote from this article is: "The big surprise in the whole process was how easy the whole thing was. We realized that intermittent fasting and dieting had opposing attributes and disadvantages. Diets are easy in the contemplation, difficult in the execution. IF is just the opposite – it’s difficult in the contemplation but easy in the execution." 
Please enjoy a snippet from this article by Tim Ferriss below and read the full article here.
"Before the work on intermittent fasting, the only real strategy for extending the lives of laboratory animals was caloric restriction (CR). If rats or mice or even primates had their calories restricted by 30-40 percent as compared to those fed ad libitum ["at pleasure" = as much as they want] they lived 20-30 percent longer. The CR animals not only live 30 percent or so longer, they don’t develop cancers, diabetes, heart disease, or obesity. And these animals have low blood sugar levels, low insulin levels, good insulin sensitivity, low blood pressure and are, in general, much healthier physically than their ad libitum fed counterparts. But not so psychologically.
As we saw in the Keys semi-starvation study, caloric restriction isn’t much fun for humans, and it apparently isn’t all that much fun for the animals undergoing it either. When rats live out their ratty lives calorically restricted in their cages, they seem to show signs of depression and irritability. Primates do as well. If primates don’t get enough cholesterol, they can actually become violent. But they do live longer. Even though CR has never been proven in humans, based on lab animal experience it does work. So, if you’re willing to put up with irritability, hostility and depression, it might be worth cutting your calories by 30 percent for the rest of your long, healthy miserable life.
But could there be a better way?

An enterprising scientist decided to try a little twist on the CR experiment. He divided the genetically-similar animals into two groups, fed one group all it wanted and measured the intake, then fed the other group all it wanted – except every other day instead of daily. When the intake of the group fed every other day was measured, it turned out that that group – the intermittently fasted group – ate just about double on the eat days, so that overall both groups consumed the same amount of food. Animals in the one group at X amount of food per day while the animals in the other group ate 2X amount of food every other day. So both groups ate the same number of calories but the commonality ended there.
The intermittently fasted group of animals despite consuming the same number of calories as the ad libitum fed group enjoyed all the health and longevity benefits of calorically restricted animals. In essence, they got their cake and ate it, too. They got all the benefits of CR plus some without the CR.
Intermittent fasting (IF) reduced oxidative stress, made the animals more resistant to acute stress in general, reduced blood pressure, reduced blood sugar, improved insulin sensitivity, reduced the incidence of cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, and improved cognitive ability."

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Intermittent Fasting for Health and Longevity

This is a great place to learn more about Intermittent fasting for health.

Intermittent Fasting Lifestyle

I am so grateful for intermittent fasting. I have truly found the diet or actually the lifestyle that works for me. Fast 5 has helped me to keep myself losing weight even though I sometimes falter and eat too much or eat outside my window by an hour or so. Yesterday I ate about two hours outside of my eating window indulging in a craving for Doritos and later ice cream.

If I was on a diet, I would have felt guilty and probably continued to binge, deciding to just give up and forget it. I probably would have thought that I ruined my diet. With intermittent fasting, I don't worry, I just begin again tomorrow and know that one mistake or even 10 mistakes will not get me off track because I am not dieting...I am living an intermittent fasting lifestyle!

Today I began again with my lunch of salad with chicken, egg, spinach, broccoli cole slaw, avocado, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, feta and asian sesame dressing. I also had some huge, sweet blueberries and strawberries, some sharp white cheddar, pistachio nuts, and a slice of wheat free bread.

Of course I will also have my chocolate later today for a treat.

Tonight I have yoga and the sun is shining...what could be better?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Intermittent Fasting

Fasting is easier than you think. There are a lot of people I talk to who hear what I do and immediately say that they "could never do that."

When I was a kid, my mom said that I wouldn't eat chocolate pudding. She said that I wouldn't eat it because it "looked gross." I wouldn't try it because I judged it and thought I wouldn't like it even though I had never tried it and so couldn't possibly know if I liked it or not.

Of course once I actually tried chocolate pudding I LOVED it! It was nothing like I thought it would be.

I suggest you just try and never know!

Monday, June 13, 2011


There are a lot of women in my office. Because of this, there is a lot of diet talk in our lunchroom. The women here are always trying this diet and that diet and cleanse after cleanse. The same result always happens. While they are doing the diet or cleanse, they pout at the lunch table, pushing their food around on their plates looking with wide eyes at the normal food on the table.

They whine and complain and cheat and feel guilty. The finish their diet after losing 5 Lbs and gaining back 10.

They are depriving themselves. This is true of all diets. There are rules that you must follow, you can eat this, but don't even think about touching that.

When are we all going to wake up and smell the billion dollar industry? Diets DON'T WORK!!!

We are all human. We all have lives that include celebrations which always include foods we LOVE. There is no way that anyone can stay on that diet that makes them pout at the lunch table and complain and long for other people's food. Failure is inevitable. And once we fail, we eat even more because of all that deprivation!

The only way to truly have freedom is to never deprive yourself.

A few years ago, after doing my own share of pouting at lunch tables, I decided never to deprive myself again...I gave up on diets...and I ballooned to 215 Lbs. I ate what I wanted, when I wanted, how ever much I wanted and just gave up.

Diets had got the better of me and I was done suffering. But my true suffering was only beginning. I was so unhappy and felt so terrible that I didn't know what to do with myself. I felt hopeless.

Then I found intermittent fasting and my whole world changed. Intermittent Fasting allows me the freedom to enjoy the foods I love while teaching my body to love the foods that are good for me.

I have never felt as good as I feel today. Physically and emotionally. I feel like such a huge weight has been lifted off of me, and I don't just mean the 50 Lbs that I released forever.

I now have FREEDOM and I will never pout at the lunch table again!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Research and Common Sense

The below post is an old post of mine in response to lots of things that I regularly hear in the diet industry. Most of them don't make any sense to me when I use my common sense radar so I did a little research and found that my common sense radar is right on the money.

One that is particularly rampant is the "starvation mode" myth. This is almost always the first thing people say to me when I tell them about my lifestyle. They say, "But don't you go into starvation mode if you skip a meal?"

Starvation mode is used as fear mongering. Keep us eating and consuming and buying those diet books. Starvation mode is not what we think it is, not even close, and eating once a day certainly will not put you into starvation mode as you are still eating the right amount of calories in a day, you are just having them in one meal instead of that crazy recommendation of 6 (who has the time or will power for six meals a day?!).

Starvation mode does not mean the absence of food. It means cutting the total caloric intake to less than 50% of what the body requires for an extended period of time. 

This would mean that you would have to reduce your calories by 50% on an ongoing basis for months or years to truly go into what everyone calls "Starvation Mode." 

That means that a diet that requires you to cut back your recommended daily calories by 500 per day or a lifestyle like intermittent fasting where you combine long fasts with eating plenty of food and never count calories at all (although if I did, I am sure I eat more than my daily recommended amount) is in no way going to put you into starvation mode. And you certainly wouldn't go into starvation mode for just skipping a meal.

Check out this article for more science behind the myth.

Enjoy a revival of my old post "The School of Common Sense" below.

I come from the school of common sense. It is how I live my life. For me, if it doesn't sound plausible it probably isn't. I haven't listened to my common sense a lot in my weight loss journey, until now. I think that is because of repetition. Martin Berkhan said it best on his blog LeanGains:
Repetition. Repeat something often enough and it becomes the truth. If everyone is saying the same thing, it must be true. No need to look into it and think for yourself.
Here are some of my common sense observations:

If you fast you will lose muscle because your body will burn muscle first before fat (a statement that one of my readers got from a personal trainer).

COMMON SENSE: If our bodies store fat for the purpose of burning that fat when it is in need of energy, why would it then go and burn muscle instead? It doesn't make sense.

THINKING FOR MYSELF: Wikipedia has something to say about this here. LeanGains blog on myths debunked, myth number six also has something to say. And here.

If you fast you will go into starvation mode and gain weight rather than lose weight.

COMMON SENSE: If I skip a meal, I am not STARVING. I have been skipping meals for almost a year now and I have lost almost 50 LBS so common sense tells me that I never switch into "starvation mode".

THINKING FOR MYSELF: Again read what wikipedia has to say about this here.

Exercise is the key to weight loss.

COMMON SENSE: You need to have a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories to release 1 pound of fat. If I work out HARD for one hour I can burn about 400-500 calories. Common sense tells me that this might work, oh wait, that means I would have to work out HARD one hour per day EVERY, SINGLE, DAY and keep my calories in line perfectly, EVERY, SINGLE, DAY.

THINKING FOR MYSELF: Now lets be realistic here. We are all busy, we all have responsibilities. Working out that hard every day just won't work, not for me at least. And being perfect with my food intake in this society is also really hard. Check out this article on the subject and one of my previous posts on Diet vs. Exercise here.

You need to eat six meals a day if you want to keep your metabolism going.

COMMON SENSE: As we all know, in history, there wasn't always a grocery store on every corner stocked with any food we could ever want in one place. As early humans we had to wait to get food until we could catch it, grow it, find it or whatever. Why would our bodies be designed to need a constant stream of food if for most of history we have been without the grocery store?

THINKING FOR MYSELF: Check out this article from the New York Times. And the US National Library of Medicine here.

Fasting is not good for you health. You need to eat regularly to be healthy.

COMMON SENSE: Since I began intermittent fasting as a lifestyle I have seen positive effects in my health. My skin which usually had acne on my face and shoulders constantly is now perfectly clear ALL THE TIME. I rarely get sick, and when I do it passes easily. Compared to before when I got colds all the time that would put me in bed for a week or more. I feel better and have more energy than ever before. I could go on and on...

THINKING FOR MYSELF: The US National Library of Medicine has countless studies that suggest that fasting is not only safe, but good for you, better for you than eating regularly. Check them out hereherehere, and here. And search for more yourself, as there are more...

Bottom line is don't believe everything you hear just because it comes from a "professional trainer". They don't have all the answers, go and find the answers yourself and learn from experience. What works for one person may not work for you, so customize your weight loss journey to fit YOUR needs.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Just change your lifestyle, duh!

This weekend I was sharing my new lifestyle with a friend and explaining my journey with intermittent fasting. It really opened my eyes while I was talking just how far I have come.

You hear it all the time in relation to losing weight, "It has to be a lifestyle change." Everyone who has succeeded with weight loss (and by success I mean losing weight and keeping it off) preaches the lifestyle change. Since I have begun my journey with intermittent fasting I feel like I finally understand what they are all talking about.

Changing your lifestyle is the key. Problem is, this is not an easy key to find. 

Changing your lifestyle is EXTREMELY difficult. They don't really mention this in their diet books that they sell. It kind of comes off as "just change your lifestyle, easy, duh!" But there is nothing easy about it. 

We are who we are. Changing usually happens as a result of a trauma or a very difficult time in our lives that forces change upon us. Usually we are better for it and that is why almost anyone you ask who has suffered hardship in their lives will tell you that they wouldn't change the bad things that have happened to them because it made them who they are today. Usually stronger, wiser, happier people who appreciate the good things in life because they know how fragile they are.

So changing your physical appearance and your internal health is not going to just happen without there being some significant event that forces change. We have to "hit rock bottom" so to speak.

When I say something significant, I don't mean that it has to be significant to everyone else looking in, although it could be, but it could also be significant only to themselves. It may seem small to outsiders looking in, but to them it was THE thing that triggered change. We have to WANT it for OURSELVES. 

A good example of this is someone I know was a smoker, for almost their whole lives, smoking excessively. They tried everything you can try to quit smoking. Patch, gum, hypnosis, electronic gadgets and on and on and on...thousands of dollars and years of effort all ending in failure. One day something caused a click in the brain that made them decide they had had enough and now was the time to quit. They put down the cigarettes and never picked them up again, with no patch, no gum, no help of any kind, just the power of the mind.

Even though it is difficult, it really is a change in lifestyle that is needed. There really is no way around this. You can try to follow this diet and that diet for a while, but unless you change the way you live, you will continue to struggle. 

The good news is, if you are lucky enough to hit your bottom and are ready for change, it isn't hard to do once it starts happening. Because a true change in lifestyle happens because we start doing things differently because we WANT to and because we LIKE to. I don't eat salad everyday because I have to and I really wish I was having a burger...I eat salad because I actually WANT to and LIKE to! 

I think intermittent fasting has helped me achieve this. I am no doctor, I am only going on my own experience but, I noticed that before intermittent fasting, my body never told me what it wanted, all I knew was I was starving and I wanted to eat everything all the time.

Fasting has allowed my body the time to asses the foods I provide and send out signals about the foods it wants and the foods it doesn't want. 

When you hear about pregnant women who crave really weird things like dirt or drywall, it is called PICA. They don't know for sure why this happens but suspect that it may be because of an iron deficiency. But these cravings are strong, the body is telling them to eat dirt, and they want to eat it just like we would want to eat chocolate or donuts or anything else that we really CRAVE. This is similar to what has happened with me, my body is CRAVING the things it really wants, like nutrients and vitamins and healthy good for me foods that make my body feel good. It tells me what it wants and makes me CRAVE these things and I eat them because I really WANT to. 

Another good analogy I read in the book The Gabriel Method  (an excellent book which also talks a lot about how to make tiny changes that make a huge impact on your lifestyle). He uses the example of a baby crying for milk. If every time a baby cries for milk you give it Pepsi, the baby will continue to scream because what it really wants is milk. Even though the baby may get very fat and look completely well nourished and well fed, it will still scream like it is starving because what it really needs is MILK!

The Gabriel Method tells us that even though a person is obese and in no way starving, they actually are starving because they are starving NUTRITIONALLY. So the body will keep screaming for food because it is not getting what it needs. And because we live in a society of fast food and convenience stores, more often than not, what we have to offer the body is food with no nutrients.

This is why before intermittent fasting, even though I was extremely overweight, I always felt starving and wanted to eat everything all the time. My body knew it was missing something, it just didn't know what it was, or how to tell me, so it just kept telling me it was starving.

So, for people who are obese, it is something that they really don't have control over. It really is unfair how society has branded overweight/obese people as lazy with no will power and blamed it all on them like they have some control over the situation. 

The body is a powerful thing, capable of healing itself, creating a life, controlling our limbs, an immeasurably complex machine. If this powerful body feels like it is starving, starving for nutrients and the only way to get what it wants is to send a message that it is starving, we are going to eat, and eat and eat whether we like it or not. 

If you are overweight or obese, it isn't your fault no matter what anyone says, no matter how much guilt you feel, you are not to blame. If you still haven't had that one significant thing happen to you to make change possible, maybe this can help, maybe intermittent fasting can help your body finally understand what it is really screaming for. 

You can change, you can switch your own switch in your mind and take the first baby step towards a new lifestyle that you live because you WANT to and LIKE to.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Been Busy!

Sorry I have been missing in action for a while... I have been really busy. I went to a wedding in Victoria for the weekend of May 14th, then it was my birthday May 19th and we went on an RV trip down to the Okanagan for the long weekend. Then I came back and had a girls weekend with some friends to celebrate my birthday and another friends birthday that is on the 30th. So, I have been pretty busy lately.

But, still doing well with fasting and still sticking to my reduced carb choices three days per week. I really notice a difference in my digestion and how I feel when I don't eat wheat. I am going to really try to limit the wheat I eat as much as possible. And carbs will be limited too, within reason of course. I don't really like giving anything up completely because it doesn't really seem maintainable for me, but limiting is certainly the first step.

Here is a photo of the food I eat Mon, Tue and Wed. I also have some chocolate for dessert and later have a snack of carrots, cucumber and hummus dip.  I love how colorful this meal is. I REALLY enjoy it when I eat it, so much variety and flavor! The bread is a wheat free bread that I LOVE. It is 100% rye flower with flax seeds. In my salad is some egg, chicken, avocado, spinach, broccoli coleslaw, cucumbers, sesame seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and dressing. Sometimes I also have some pickles and later in the day I might have a banana for a snack.

I often say that two years ago if I had tried to switch the way I eat to this meal overnight, there is no way I would have managed to stick to it. But now, I know that I will keep this up. Fasting gives my body the chance to tell me what foods it wants in the form of CRAVINGS. Cravings that are just as powerful as the ones we get for chocolate cake. I CRAVE this food now, because my body wants it, it wants the nutrients. It feels good when I give it these nutrients so it asks for more.

I am doing all of this in small steps. 

First step was deciding I had enough and making a commitment to change. 

Second step was giving up carbonated drinks and diet sweeteners.

Third step was try fasting, work my way up to the 19 hour fast.

Fourth step was adding in more veggies, always break my fast with veggies and eat them first. That is when I started eating my spinach salad.

Fifth step was adding in more longer fasts to help kick start my weight loss and keep me consistently moving downwards.

Sixth step was adding in some activity, yoga twice a week is now a must for me, and I want to add a third day. 

Seventh step was changing how I eat Mon-Wed and reducing my carbs. 

And there will be many more steps to come I am sure. There were things I tried along the way that didn't stick. Things that I just didn't enjoy, counting calories, lifting weights, cutting out wheat and dairy completely etc. The things that stuck were the things that I found I did because I enjoyed them, not because I had to do it or should do it but because I really wanted to do it. 

That really is the key, try stuff out until you find things that you LIKE to do, food wise, exercise wise and anywhere in your life that you want to make a change. And don't try to do everything all at once and make HUGE changes cold turkey. Do things one small step at a time, and eventually you will look back and be shocked at how far you have come, and it didn't even seem like it was hard to get there because you did it a little at a time.

Two years ago I was 215 Lbs, very unhappy, very unhealthy, eating almost 100% wheat, carbs and sugar, almost all my food was white. I came home every day and sat in front of the TV until bed time. 

Today I have a new life, with new friends and a schedule of fun things to do almost every evening (and very little TV). Tons of travel in my past and in my future and a healthier happier body. Fast 5 has changed my life and I am never going back!

Here are some pics from the various events I have been busy with this month.

My cousin's wedding in Victoria

My Grandma and I at the wedding,
she is 89 and got up on the dance floor for two songs!

My hubby and I on the dance floor at the reception

Hubby, me and our dog Bexley on the RV

The HUGE RV that our friends took us on this trip in

Doing some sightseeing

In one of the wineries in Osoyoos

One of our yummy lunches on our trip

The birthday girls

Girls night out

On the dance floor

Strike a pose girls!

The morning after, outside the hotel.

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