Get Awesome Intermittent Fasting Results After One Week
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Over the past week, I have been following the 16/8 intermittent fasting protocol and have seen some awesome results.
For those who have never heard of the 16/8 intermittent fasting protocol, it basically is as simple as this –
- fast for 16 straight hours
- eat during the remaining 8 hour window
- only drink water, black coffee, and tea while fasting
There are plenty of other options or rules depending on who you listen to when it comes to fasting … but those points above are the basics.
Some people don’t believe in drinking coffee (just water) … while others add some coconut oil or ghee to their coffee. Personally I think there is no wrong or right answer and you need to do what is best for you.
Intermittent Fasting Protocols
There are other protocols too like the 24-Hour fast and 5:2 intermittent fasting. The 24-Hour fast is self-explanatory and something I have recently experimented with.
The 5:2 method for fasting is where you eat normally for 5 days of the week. And the remaining 2 days you restrict daily calories to around 500 to 600.
My preference is the 16/8 protocol because it fits with my lifestyle. On days I fast, I simply stop eating after 8:00 PM (no snacking), skip breakfast, and start eating lunch sometime after noon.
It is fairly simple and easy to follow. And it simplifies my mornings on figuring out what to eat for breakfast. Or in this case what not to eat.
Most weeks I try and fast 3 to 4 days depending on my schedule. However, recently I wanted to test out what would happen if I fasted for seven days straight.
In the article below I will cover my experiences on fasting for one week straight using the 16/8 protocol. Overall, I would say the results were awesome.
In addition to covering my fasting results, I will also discuss other important factors in improving my health during my fasting week. These include the foods I ate (started following the Whole30), my exercise routine, stress management, and my sleep.
Intermittent Fasting Results After One Full Week
As I mentioned earlier, I decided to test out intermittent fasting for seven consecutive days.
No … this doesn’t mean I didn’t eat anything for an entire week. What it meant is that I blocked off times each day where I didn’t eat anything. During these fasting hours, I kept things simple by only drinking water and black coffee.
My schedule looked something like this –
- Fasting Starts – 8:00 PM
- Fasting Ends – 12:00 Noon
That schedule was the basic guidelines I used, but I often found myself not eating anything after dinner … which our family ate sometimes around 5:30 or 6:00 PM. So on multiple occasions I fasted much more than 16 hours. The longest fasting day was about 18 hours.
Each day I waited until after 12:00 PM to break my fast, except for one where I started eating at 11:30 AM. But I always hit my goal of at least 16 consecutive hours of fasting.
And for anyone new to fasting … you may have noticed one important tip about when I choose to fast. I try and sleep from 10:00 PM to around 5:00 AM (give or take). So following that sleep pattern, I was able to take advantage of 7+ hours of fasting while I was sleeping!
Overall, I hit my 16/8 intermittent fasting goals for an entire week. But my healthy journey did not stop at just that.
I also changed the way I was eating.
I tried to move a lot and lift things for exercise.
Staying hydrated was also a focus of mine during the week.
And lastly … I worked to try and manage my stress levels while getting adequate sleep.
All of these factors combined with intermittent fasting helped me with my results (which I will share at the end).
Let’s take a look at each factor in more detail.
What Did I Eat?
The same day I started my one week of 16/8 intermittent fasting, I also began a clean eating program … known as the Whole30.
You can check out more on this program here, but it basically removes the following things from your diet for 30 days – sugar, gluten, dairy, legumes, and alcohol. There is more to it than just that … so I suggest following up on the rules if you are interested.
The Whole30 program is similar to the paleo diet with a few modifications.
I wasn’t alone in this journey, as my wife and oldest son started along on the program with me. This is our 6th round of the Whole30 for us in the past 3 years.
We typically start a round shortly after the Christmas holiday to try and have a “healthy reset” as I often like to call it.
Why is it important to talk about what I ate when discussing intermittent fasting? Because I strongly believe it isn’t just about when you eat or what you eat … but instead a combination of the two.
I think it is critical to understand when I discuss my intermittent fasting results, that the foods I eat are also a factor … not just the fasting.
There is no doubt this type of clean eating had a positive impact on my results. And will continue to provide healthy results as we keep on the program.
Intermittent fasting also forces me to eat less food and ultimately consume less calories.
It’s pretty simple when you think about it – less hours to eat during the day means a reduction in the calories I can consume.
Next I want to share what I did to exercise, or “move” as I like to call it.
How Did I Move?
Moving is another important daily habit everyone needs to do in order to be healthy. Whether you do workout routines, run, yoga, walking, pushups, play basketball, ride bikes with your kids … just move!
So I wouldn’t be telling the whole story of my week of fasting without mentioning how I moved.
During the week I completed 4 HIIT workouts of about 30 minutes each. As in the name HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) … these workouts were intense.
In addition to those workouts, I also continued on with my 10,000 pushup challenge. This year I have challenged myself to complete at least 30 pushups per day over the course of a year. The end result will be 10,000+ pushups in a year.
So I completed 7 days of these 30 pushups for a total of 210. Maybe not a huge deal for some … but this simple daily habit will payoff in the long run.
One last thing I want to mention about moving and lifting things. I make a habit of always taking the stairs at work … a lot of my co-workers use the elevator.
I park in the furthest lot at work to get extra steps in. These little factors add up for me and are good places to start if you don’t want to do intense exercises.
I also try and go for a 30 minute walk during my lunch hour … but the weather didn’t cooperate the past week.
Before we move on to talking about hydration I wanted to mention one last thing about exercise. Most of the time when I start working out, I almost always gain a bit of weight instead of losing it. I figure this is because I’m building muscle.
So when we review my intermittent fasting results, keep this in mind.
Focused on Hydration
One of my goals or themes for this year is to keep my body hydrated.
My daily goal is to drink half my body weight in ounces of water. That comes out to about 90 ounces of water per day. Spread out over my waking hours … this isn’t a difficult goal as long as I am consistent.
In order to help hit my daily target, I have added a new daily habit this year (along with my 30 pushups) to drink 12 ounces of water when I wake up in the morning.
Each night before going to bed I fill my 12 ounce glass with water and leave it in our bathroom.
When I wake, that glass is the first thing I usually see and is a trigger that I need to drink my 12 ounces of water before starting the day.
This simple little habit puts me on the right path for the rest of my day.
During my week of intermittent fasting, I made sure to continue hitting my daily hydration goals. This helped remove a lot of the toxins from my body that have been building up.
So far we have discussed the foods I ate, my exercise routine, and hydration. The final piece is to cover stress management (which is a work in progress) and getting adequate sleep.
Managing Stress and Getting Quality Sleep
I never used to care much about my stress levels or how many hours I slept each night. I figured I could steal away hours of my sleep to get more work done.
But after letting my stress levels get way to high (about 5 or 6 years ago) … I noticed my first signs of psoriasis. My belief is that my psoriasis was first brought on by stress and it hasn’t gone away since.
So managing stress and getting enough quality sleep are important pieces of my health journey.
Along with morning pushups and drinking my 12 ounces of water … I also added a healthy habit of 3 to 5 minutes of meditation. I think it can be a good way for me to relax and start the day off right.
I’ve also been experimenting with deep breathing exercises during stressful times at work. So far these have helped to calm me down.
When it comes to getting enough sleep, I have made it a goal for me to be in bed with the lights out every night by 10:00 PM. Except for the weekends where I don’t have to get up at 5:00 AM.
I’d have to admit that I still struggle a bit with stress management and sleep overall. But the past week during my fasting I made a point of focusing on improving both areas of my life.
As you can probably tell, my week of healthy living wasn’t just about intermittent fasting … but rather a bunch of healthy activities and habits.
Combined, these healthy habits or tools as I like to call them helped give me some really good results.
One Week Intermittent Fasting Results
After 7 consecutive days of following this routine … my intermittent fasting results were amazing.
Overall, I lost almost 5 pounds (4.8 pounds to be exact). My starting weight was 190.6 pounds and dropped to 185.8 pounds after just 7 days.
No doubt … most of the weight loss was likely from water and I would never expect to average losing 5 pounds every week. But it was a very good start as I try and get to a more ideal body weight of 170 to 175 pounds.
I can’t help but think I flushed some toxins from my body.
Weight Loss – 4.8 pounds
Note – I made sure to weigh myself at the same time (Monday morning after just waking up) before and after for consistent results.
Losing almost 5 pounds honestly surprised me a bit. I figured to lose around 2 or 3 pounds.
There is no doubt that intermittent fasting (along with the other tools) helped me lose weight. But there were also a lot of other not so obvious intermittent fasting results that I am excited about.
Other Intermittent Fasting Results
Maybe even more important than the weight loss, were the other intermittent fasting results from last week.
For example, all of my psoriasis patches were much less inflamed. My biggest area for psoriasis is my lower back … just under the waistline. While the psoriasis didn’t disappear … it seemed a lot less irritated. The scaly patches also seemed to level out … which I think is a good sign?
I have two other smaller areas where I get psoriasis patches which include my belly button and the groin area. The belly button patches completely went away and the groin patches are still about the same.
It is certainly a work in progress … but I will take the improvement.
Some additional improvements I noticed in the past week –
No more acid re-flux. I started having some acid re-flux symptoms around the holidays when I was eating unhealthy. All of those symptoms are now gone.
Over the past couple of weeks leading up to my 7 day intermittent fasting challenge, I would experience a little shortness of breath. Those symptoms are completely gone now that I have been eating better and fasting more.
Finally, I was able to sleep better than I had been when following my fasting protocol … however I did get up to use a the restroom often I think because of all the extra water I was drinking.
I’m sure there are a few other improvements that I am not mentioning … but I think it was a good week.
A Week of Healthy Habits
The focus of this post is around the benefits I have seen from intermittent fasting. For me … it has reduced the inflammation in my body, given me more energy, and even helped me lose weight.
However, if I only talked about intermittent fasting … then I wouldn’t be telling the whole story.
My health journey includes using intermittent fasting as a tool. But that isn’t the only tool I’m using to improve my health.
I have started eating a healthy, whole foods diet by following the Whole30.
I’m focused on staying hydrated by drinking at least 90 ounces of water each day (half my usual body weight in ounces). Drinking a 12 ounce glass of water is now the first thing I do each morning.
Building strength is yet another tool I have added to my healthy journey. Just this year I started the 10,000 pushup challenge in order to build upper body strength. I have a new daily morning habit of doing 30 pushups as soon as I wake up.
As you can probably tell … all of these tools combined are helping me take back control of my health … not just eating right or fasting.
The week of intermittent fasting produced amazing healthy results. Let’s see if I can continue to build on these new habits I have established and take my health to the next level?
Who wants to come along with me on this health journey?