Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Intermittent Fasting Challenge: Week 2

For the month of April, I'm doing the 30-day No Meat Athlete Intermittent Fasting Challenge. Mostly for fun! There's no time like a pandemic for a fun food challenge. I'm also curious to see how I feel doing 16:8 intermittent fasting, which is supposed to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body, protecting against certain chronic diseases. It can also help with digestion and gut health.

The 30-day challenge, available to members of the NMA Academy (No Meat Athlete's membership group) has several options, and I'm doing the "gradual build" option. I started last week with 12:12 fasting (12 hours of eating/12 hours of fasting), and this week, I've graduated to 14:10. The plan did allow for one optional 12:12 day this week for those who have long runs, so I used that option on Saturday when Paul and I ran 10 miles. On days that I run long, I need to eat more, so having more hours to do that is helpful.

So far this week, 14:10 has gone pretty smoothly! I'm using the Zero app to track each day's fast, and they provide a filter to use on your breakfast pic. On Sunday, I broke my fast (after 12 hours, thanks to Saturday's 12:12 plan) with my favorite lazy Sunday breakfast — Rice Noodle Ramen with Veggies & Tofu.

Yesterday, I went on a three-mile run when I first woke up. I'm learning to run in a fasted state. Before, I always had a Larabar first. And then immediately after, I broke my fast with a banana for post-run carbs. About an hour later, I had my breakfast — a Mango Pineapple Green Protein Smoothie with banana, walnuts, flax, and spinach.

This morning, I pushed my fast to 15 hours! That's because I planned to run after work, and I knew I'd need to push my dinner back to 6 pm instead my usual 5 pm to make the 10-hour eating window. I was pretty famished by the time I got to eat this bowl of Overnight Oats with PB, Berries, and Banana at 9 am!

Tomorrow, I start the first of two weeks of 16:8! Eeeek! For this first week of 16:8, I get two optional 12:12 days, which I'll save for the weekend — one for my Saturday long run and the other probably on Friday (so I can drink later in the evening). The hardest part of 14:10 for me this week was over the weekend, when I wanted a glass of wine after 6 pm but couldn't have it! 

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