Feels like things are on the up, and trying out 5:2

Published June 16, 2014 by Crystal

Imsomnia seems to have made its excuses and left.  It’s a great thing.  Though I seem to be in the opposite state at the moment of not being able to get up in the morning, so I’m still yet to find a happy medium once more.

But I’ve had some laughs the last few days.  And that’s good.  Yes, I have felt tearful, and irrational at times, but there is some recognisable joy of late, and it’s good.

My food issues are still at the forefront of my mind.  Some meals go great, I feel calm, collected, I leave food because I am satisfied with a small amount.  Other times I feel completely out of control, the desire to numb, or not bother at all with paying attention.  Anxiety, stress.  It builds up.

I still want weight loss.  Physically I know I feel better now, a couple of stone lighter.  And I believe I would benefit from some more weight loss.  But I am also aware of the fine line I walk between obsession and normality.  I like control.  I hate being out of control but it easily happens around food.  And when the control is lost, the depression can hit, or depression can hit and control is lost.

So I’ve been thinking what to do about it all, and it was a coincidence that someone asked on a group about the 5:2 and whether anyone has experiences with it.  It’s something that a couple of family members have seen real success with.  Particularly in losing and maintaining the loss.  Personally it hadn’t appealed in the past.  The idea of virtually no food for 2 days of the week just did not appeal.  But then during lent I skipped lunch, and enjoyed the physical feelings.  I felt lighter and enjoyed feeling connected to my body, and noticing the hunger and how it sat in my body.  I stopped before Lent had finished because I was finding it hard to do my long training walks (3+ hours) while Fasting 10 hours a day.  And then in the last few weeks, with my food portions dropping drastically, there was a part that enjoyed again the lighter physical feeling of eating less, but then panic started to come, about what would happen when I started to eat normally (for me) again, and the weight loss I’d got might vanish over time.

So the discussion about the 5:2 was of interest to me this time around.  If you’ve seen the Eat, Fast, Live Longer Horizon show, you will have known the way it took the country by storm.  People didn’t focus on the many possible physical benefits, the actual “Live Longer” aspect of the show, or the information on moving the body into a state of repairing, lowering cholesterol, blood pressure etc. It was the weight loss that appealed.  And  I guess that is human nature in this day and age.  Michael Mosley ended up writing a book after so many requests for his help, and so many people finding the idea of fasting for 2 days a week a really easy way to lose weight.

I downloaded the book, and read through it last night.  Reading with awareness.  Reading with caution that I walk that fine line between obsession and normality.  A part of the book that was of particular interest to me was about Fasting and Mood.  There is some evidence that BDNF is positively affected by Intermittent Fasting, and can have an antidepressant effect, though mostly in rodents, still lots of trials on humans to be done!  I decided that this in itself was a good reason to at least give the 5:2 a good try.  A little bit of control a couple of days a week, feeling hunger, doing things other than eating, then eating “normally” for the other 5 days of the month.

I honestly have no idea how this is going to pan out.  I am going to keep in mind the Beyond Chocolate principle of Be Your Own Guru, but then part of the thing that attracts me to the 5:2 is that this is the approach Michael Mosley says we need to take.  We need to find our own way of making the fast days work for us.  Maybe we’ll want one big meal, maybe 2 small, maybe an apple mid day, maybe no breakfast until it’s gone 11am.  There is flexibility.  Today I started with an omelette.  This evening I will have salmon with rocket salad.

I won’t lie.  There is that little bit of euphoria over starting something new.  But that is better right now than the stress and anxiety over feeling no control.

I’ll keep you posted.




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