Intermittent Fasting 16/8 Method
To all the mothers out there, let’s be honest. Getting back to our pre-baby weight can be quite the challenge. It seems that for many women, they “snap-back” to their pre-pregnancy weight within a matter of months. Well, what about the rest of us? I was one of those women who struggled to get that baby weight off. Both of my pregnancies were completely different. After giving birth to my first child, I dropped down lower than my pre-pregnancy weight. I had worked out consistently throughout my pregnancy and also chose to breastfeed once he was born. It seemes as though the weight just melted away. With my second child, I was working full-time and going to school part-time. I was able to work out inconsistently during the first few months of pregnancy. At the end of my pregnancy I struggled with sciatica and hormone related migraines that made it hard to do basic daily tasks. I also chose to breast feed with my daughter. I assumed that the baby weight would fall off after my daughter was born as it did with my first pregnancy but I was sadly mistaken. Don’t get me wrong I did get within 5 lbs. of my pre-pregnancy weight. However, it seemed that those last few pounds refused to be shed! I started working out and continuing to eat well. When you’re breastfeeding, it is important to keep your caloric intake high enough to make sure you are producing enough milk. Let’s just say that was a balancing act.
My husband introduced me to Intermittent Fasting (IF) about a year ago. I was intrigued by the idea and we began to research how to add this to our lifestyle. There are many different kinds of IF, but we have been utilizing Intermittent Fasting 16/8 method regularly for the past 6 months and have seen nothing but positive results.
Intermittent Fasting 16/8 is when you fast daily for a 16-hour period, avoiding caloric foods/drinks. Followed by an 8-hour window of eating. Typical fasting hours can be from 8pm until 12pm, the following day. During this time zero calorie drinks are allowed (water, coffee and tea). At 12pm you can begin your eating window.
The idea is to reduce your caloric intake while burning more calories to help increase weight loss. There are many different hormonal changes that occur during IF. For example, our human growth hormone (HGH) increases aiding in fat-loss and muscle growth while Insulin levels drop allowing our fat stores to be more easily accessible. These are just a few of the hormonal changes that occur during fasting.
It is important to remember that during your eating period not to overdue it and binge eat. This will be counteractive to your fast. For women, it is important to be aware that our hormones are easily manipulated and if done incorrectly IF can cause hormonal imbalances directly affecting menstrual cycles and fertility.
Here is what a daily schedule would look like:
Wake up & Fast until 12pm
1 Meal between 12pm-1pm
2 Meal between 3pm-5pm
3 Meal between 6pm-8pm
Stop eating at 8pm
In combination with working out consistently and intermittent fasting, I have lost about 15 pounds, surpassing my pre-pregnancy weight. I can feel an increase in stamina and endurance. I am excited to continue to master IF and continue to loose fat and gain more muscles mass! My husband and I typically fast Monday-Friday and eat normally on the weekends. Consistency is key. Stick to your plan and slowly you will achieve your goal!
Keep watching the InterSweetz for health and fitness updates from my journey.