Updated: Jan 13
I know plenty of you are taking this Challenge on 2 meals a day – good on you. If you weren’t aware, you’re “Intermittent Fasting” (IF).
First, why the hell are we doing it? Were trying to find out how much food the body actually needs – so we can give it that. We consume too much in every sense of the word, and a simple method to reduce the food we eat will benefit us on multiple plains of wellbeing. It’s just a dead good thing to do. “3 square meals a day” is on the dock, and this month, we will bring down the gavel. If you don’t need it, don’t eat it. You’ll be leaner, lighter, and – if Ben was right – you’ll lead a longer life.
“To lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals” ~ Ben Franklin.
As a fellow IF’er I wanted to share with you a few things I’ve learned since I began my IF journey one year ago.
IF’ers are the second biggest twats in the universe. Vegans are still out in front here, but make no mistake about it, we IF’ers are a pain in the ar*e.
How do you know if someone is IF’ing? They will tell you all about it.
I once drove two meek and mild women to rage, because I couldn’t stop talking about it. We work together once per week, and every time they ordered breakfast, I would make some snide comment about why I’m not eating, and why they shouldn’t too. After a while, they’d had enough. They began to gang up on little Philly P. All I can say is that it got pretty catty. When you find IF, you think you’re on a different level, and for some reason, you just can’t keep your mouth shut. Eating 2 meals a day is great, but it doesn’t make you Superman.
It’s Tough At The Get Go. You’ve spent your life teaching your body it needs 1/3 more food than you are now giving it. Of course, the reaction to such a huge drop in calories is going to be a giant F.U. The body will use hunger, anger, and an assortment of emotional middle fingers to bring you back to heel. You must win this battle of wills. Your body is like a child – it will eventually do as its told, but it may eject a few toys from the pram first. Intermittent Fasting isn’t hard – the adaptation phase is hard – after that, it’s easy. I always reference Ramadan. A Billion muslims going nil by mouth when the sun’s in the sky. They struggle for the first few days, and then they plain sail. Clearly, the body adapts to new less food incredibly quickly. When the boat rocks, don’t fold – stay the course until the storm passes.
Breakfast late – You have 16 hours, and 2 meals to fuel them. Eating times are crucial to your success. Push your breakfast as late as possible. 10am is OK, 11am is better, midday is gold, 1pm is ninja. Like a McDonalds with wheelchair access, I would advise ramping it up. Start at 10am and then push it further and further back. A midday breakfast assassinates lunch, allowing you to cross the bridge into dinner territory. The perfect dinner time is a time that allows you to feel satisfied all the way into unconscious. If you eat too early, you’ll end up semi naked, eating cheese by the light of an open fridge.
Movement in the morning – When I was first getting into IF – God it’s so f*cking good to be able to legitimately talk to hundreds of people about IF… vegans, here I come – I digress. When I was first getting into IF, I found a morning jog an extremely useful tool in helping me to remove my morning food pangs. Nothing Olympic – a gentle canter around the whore-infested Tecom streets was always enough to jumble up my stomach, and remove all hunger sensations. Of course, when you’re an IF’er (like me), and you run in the morning, that energy isn’t coming from food in your stomach, so it must have to come from somewhere else. High five emoji. Now I’ve been doing it for so long, I don’t need to exercise in the morning – but I still do.
Safety nets – Make sure you have some basic, durable foods in your cupboards. Eggs, nuts, oats should be fine. If you’re just getting in to IF (I’m not, I’ve been doing it for over a year now), you can use these as snack when you feel a wobble. Rather than blowing the bloody doors off (fridge / cheese / knickers), just nibble on something respectable, and get yourself back to bed.
Balance your meals – This isn’t the place for some weird zero carb, low fat, cabbage, Hollywood, Dukan nonsense. You’re giving your body 1/3 less food, so it’s important the meals you eat are balanced. A chicken breast is not a healthy dinner. There should be green stuff everywhere. And decent portions. IF is a different way to eat, not a segue to anorexia.
Don’t be militant – Bones are rigid, and without that rigidity, we would fall into puddles of our own flesh. But bones, also have a degree of flexibility. Without that, we would crack, and fracture, and fall into a dusty pile of osteoporotic splinters. When it comes to your IF adventure, be a bone. Have rules and structure, but don’t be too militant about the whole sitch. Enjoy it, vibe with it, flow with it. If you screw up a few days, who cares, they doesn’t exist now anyway. Remember you’re the 2nd biggest twat in the universe – you can be a hypocrite every now and then. Some days – just to p*ss off everyone even more – I eat conventionally. I have an early breakfast, snacks, lunch, and dinner. When you fast most days, and take breaks whenever you want, it takes off all the pressure.
I start a lot of things and give them up. My new years resolutions were to learn Spanish and to give up masturbation. I failed both. I’m proud to say I haven’t flunked IF. Told you all IF’ers are w*nkers.