I came home from my big cross-country road trip having packed on a few pounds, what with having eaten and drank anything and everything I felt like for two whole weeks. I weighed in at 257.8, which is quite a bit higher than my preferred weight of about 245. Mind you, I am 6’6″.
Since 2009, I have lost 10+ pounds on at least 3 different occasions. In ’09, I simply started going to the gym every single day after years of inactivity, and the weight melted off quickly. I went from 273 to 228 leading up to our wedding. I didn’t really change my diet either, I just simply ran on an elliptical machine for 30 minutes a day. And then twice in recent years—2017 and 2020—I did keto and had great success, dropping 15-20 pounds very quickly both times. In both cases I stopped keto after I exceeded my goal, and then was able to keep it off decently well, at least 6 months.
This time, I thought I would try a new method to get back into shape—intermittent fasting. I got the idea while watching a Twins game, when guest commentator LaTroy Hawkins told the audience that’s how he was able to stay so lean while chomping down on some BBQ on air. I did some research and found there were other benefits to this as well—from heart health to memory to insulin levels.
On August 16, the great experiment began! My eating window, I decided, would be from 2-10pm. Some felt that might be too late in the day. Why not do 12-8, or 1-9? Well, I work from home and my office is literally in the kitchen. I sit here from 8-5 every day. The greater chunk of eating time I can take out of that period, the better. It’s too easy to snack all day. Another contributing thought is that I often like to stay up at night watching TV, and I would like to be able to have a drink in hand for that.
The first day or two were pretty tough to adjust to. I had been in the habit of making large breakfasts for myself to start the work day—hashbrowns, sausage, and eggs with coffee and orange juice. All of that had to be scrapped, except for the coffee, and even then it had to be black, no cream or anything. While my stomach rumbled, demanding I intake some calories, my brain seemed to appreciate the effort. I found myself a little more zeroed in on work and slightly more productive.
Most weekdays I got a workout in over lunch as well, whether elliptical, swimming, walks, or other. I usually burn about 333 calories per 30 minutes. Factor in that the average person’s body burns 75 calories/hour just by existing and doing nothing, and by 2:00 each day I was net negative-1,500 calories for the day. After sweating it out over a workout, with nothing in my body, my lowest weight was achieved on August 31 at 250.0 lbs. flat, a loss of 7.8 pounds to that point.
For whatever reason, I have not gotten any lower than that in the first half of September. I have mixed in a couple weekend cheat days including a Labor Day free-for-all with the neighbors where the mimosas started flowing around 11am. But overall I have really stuck to it and continued to close my exercise ring on my Apple Watch daily.
I imagine the reason I’m not losing any more weight yet is because I have been eating an excessive amount during that 2-10 period, maybe even packing an entire day’s worth of calories into it. I still have a normal sized lunch, just delayed, and this fasting perhaps tricks me into thinking I can eat as much of whatever I want the rest of the day.
So, will I stick with it? I don’t know. I may just go back to the tried-and-true keto thing for a couple weeks until I get back to that target weight. Cutting out beer would probably also do the trick, but I don’t want to.