Category Archives: The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey

So, how are you all getting on?

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It’s been a while since I have wanted to write about the 5:2 Diet. I never intended this site to be diet-based, but it’s still drawing in hundreds of visitors every day. I have to accept what my audience wants!

I just wondered how everyone is getting on with the 5:2 diet? How long have you been on the diet and how successful has it been for you? Did Christmas hinder your efforts?

Also, I am once again recruiting a guest blogger to share their personal dieting story (5:2 only, please). This time I will focus on just one dieter to keep it simple.

Email me at HEC527@live.co.uk with a paragraph about why you’d like to write for this blog for the foreseeable future and I will choose an appropriate volunteer  by Friday 25th January.

I require a writer for one or two posts per week and preferably someone with good grammar so I don’t have to do too much editing.

I look forward to your submissions!

Thanks for reading,

Heather
We Eat Things

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey – The Final Chapter

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I no longer think of myself on a diet.  I’m still doing 5:2, trying to be flexible on which days I do my fasting, but it’s not a diet.  I think I’ve actually changed the way I think about food and the way I eat.  Now I just happen to like to have two days a week when I take it easy and make do with 600 cals.  That’s it really; it doesn’t seem a big deal now, just a minor part of my lifestyle.

I hardly even notice the hunger anymore.  I’ve come to enjoy the feeling of having a completely empty stomach.  After a few hours of not eating I feel a huge rush of air gurgling up from my insides and echoing through my tummy in a muffled roar.  I like that – it’s a lot more pleasant feeling than it sounds!

My weight loss has slowed, but not stopped.  I’m pretty much holding steady with a good, healthy BMI of 24.5.  Officially, I’m no longer overweight, and I do feel better.  No more indigestion, no more squeezing into too tight jeans and no more trying to suck my gut in.

I think 5:2 has been a big success for me, all the more so because I don’t feel I’m really trying.  I’m certainly not restricting what I eat on feed days, so there’s never a point where I can crumble as so often happens in traditional diets.  All I need to do is just slow down a bit two times a week.

It’s a piece of cake!

Pete – Guest Blogger
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The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey (Week 6 Results)

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This week I have been messing around with my formula for the best 5:2 system and had my eureka moment with this arrangement:  Day 1 – fast all day, eat all 600 cals at tea time.  Day 2 (consecutively) – eat 300 cals for breakfast and 300 cals for tea, the other days, eat what I like.  This works very nicely indeed for me.  I always find day one of the fast quite easy anyway; day two was always the challenge, but splitting the fast into two parts during the day makes the hunger pangs more bearable.

As for eating what like on the other days, this week I passed a new milestone, the frontline in the battle of the bulge, my waistline, has receded by a whole notch on my belt!  So I really do seem to be getting away with it, as it were.  Proof of the pudding (and I do love puddings) is the loss of another two pounds of dastardly fat.

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey – Sweetie Bonanza!

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Soft ice cream

My weeks are following a pattern now.  Come the last feed day of the week, I’m raring to go for my fast, and day one of the fast passes without too much trouble.  However, contrary to previous weeks, my second fast day was really hard.  I wasn’t going to cave in and go cupboard raiding, but the thought certainly crossed my mind.  I was so ravenous that the following day, I launched myself at food, so it was not so much a feed day, as a gorge yourself day.

The next four days followed a similar pattern; I consumed cakes, sweets, chocolate and beer like there was no tomorrow.  I did restrain myself at one point, given the stunning weather I fancied an ice cream from an inviting looking Mr Whippy van but decided not to bother, given that I’d already eaten about three packets of crisps and a packet of sweeties that day.

I’ll see how hard my fasting days go next week.  But if I struggle like I have this week, then I’ll try splitting the days instead of hitting them consecutively.

Oh, and by the way, despite my utter gluttony, I still managed to lose one pound this week.

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey

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It’s been an unusual week; visiting family away from home really threw my routine.  I made the mistake of not telling anyone about my diet and then feeling really bad arriving there on Sunday when I saw the food mountain piled into the oversized fridge.  I knew that the next day was a fast day for me and offence could easily be caused by announcing this when my dear Mum had gone to so much trouble. 

So (keeping my diet to myself) I had to feign fullness and feeling a bit “icky” to miss breakfast and lunch and then stopped eating in the evening after an approximate 600 cal serving of lasagne.  That makes a surprisingly small meal and a highly unusual amount of left-overs! 

That done, I decided to divide and conquer the issue by moving my next fast day onto the day I would set off for home (instead of the following day, as I would normally), thus allowing me to enjoy the hospitality for the intervening two days.

This worked, and after the first strange day, nobody had to put up with my strange (to them) eating habits.  It also meant a six hour motorway journey on an empty stomach (which made me feel a bit nervous) and trying to guess another 600 cal portion size from a generous helping of casserole at the excellent Tebay services in Cumbria.

The bad news soon followed, I weighed myself at the end of the week to find I’d lost precisely zero pounds.  Oh dear.  Given the excess portions and ready availability of junk food on my feed days, I’d really gone to town, and it showed.  Fingers crossed for a better week next week.

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey (Week Three Results)

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Mars (chocolate bar)

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

20-21 Aug 2012:
My weight is bouncing around like an over-excited toddler on a trampoline. Over the weekend I put 4 pounds back on one day, and lost 5 again the next day, followed by another 1 on the second fast day. I’m at a loss to explain it, other than scales error?

Interestingly, on my fast this week I noticed a parallel between fasting and dealing with anxiety. I’ve suffered with anxiety problems quite a bit over the years and have learnt to ride anxious moments out, don’t give into them and feel the anxiety ebb away on its own accord. The hunger pangs feel exactly the same. One moment you feel overwhelmed and you think a Mars bar seems like a great idea, but then you stop, take a deep breath, make a cup of tea and the feelings plateau and then they quickly pass. By my second day of fasting it was beginning to feel easy. However, I did keep waking in the night, dreaming of food, my empty belly scolding me audibly.

I’ve told my wife what I’m doing now, and she’s quite supportive and curious about it, although for her, recovering from a diagnosis of coeliac disease means she won’t be joining me anytime soon.

22-24 Aug 2012:
Sad to say, I’ve been on a bit of a pig out the last couple of days. I really haven’t enjoyed it. I feel bloated most of the time, my indigestion is running wild and I also feel horribly lethargic. I really miss my fast days. Clearly I need some kind of regulation on my feed days, because I’m just not enjoying letting myself go. Wii Fit confirms I’m up two pounds since my fast day, although some of that is to be expected from simply filling my belly after a fast. Dismissing the negativity for a moment, I’ve still lost a net 7 pounds in 3 weeks. That’s not to be sniffed at!

There’s a big challenge facing me over the next week, as I go on a family visit where, bless them, in the spirit of hospitality, I will be plied with junk food and all manner of salty, fatty ready meals. I’m going to have to be up front and tell them I can hardly eat for two days, and I need proper healthy food in my 600 calories to get me by.

I expect vacant expressions all round, but hope to be surprised…

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey (Week 2 Results)

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Week 2 results:

13 Aug 2012:  Today I felt elated.  I had a real buzz from going back onto the fasting.  No breakfast, no lunch and then I’m at the gym for a serious workout with one of the trainers to get a personal programme set up.  I was seriously scared I wouldn’t have enough energy and that a might faint.  In fact, my biggest problem was that after a few minutes of cardio, I started to smell.  Not just a sweaty kind of smell, but a smell that would get some households banishing the poor dog out into the garden kind of smell.  Oh dear.  The poor guy didn’t say anything, but he must have noticed.

Hunger pangs came and went and I fought them with ease.  Weighed myself again, and another 2 pounds has dropped off.  I’m suspecting a local distortion in gravitational force.  I can’t really be losing weight this quickly?

14 Aug 2012:  This has been a much harder day.  The hunger pangs bit hard today.  I’ve alternated between green tea and tea, Early Grey – hot, in an effort to placate the demon that’s clawing away on the inside of my stomach.  Frequently I find myself unexpectedly in the kitchen, either standing at the food cupboard, or marvelling at the coy apples peeping at me from the fruit bowl.

I fought it all day, and by the time of the evening meal, I was truly desperate for food.  It was at meal time that I had a revelation.  We had salmon with lots of chopped veg and salad.  Normally, this meal is somewhere around dog food on my scale of personal preferences, chips or curry at the other end of the scale, but today it was magnificent.  Every carrot had a satisfying crunch.  Every tomato tasted as sweet as ethereal ambrosia.  The salmon was sensational.  Even the red pepper sparkled on my taste buds.  And the grapes, they were just indescribable.  The salad leaves were stuffed in like they were the first chocolates of Christmas day.  600 calories has never tasted so good and yet been so healthy.  I was in heaven.  Better yet, towards the end of the meal I actually felt full.  Not bloated, but actually pleasantly full.  This is new to me.  I’m almost dreading going back to eating normally now.  Oh, and I’ve lost another pound in weight.  That’s more than half a stone now.

15 – 19 Aug 2012: Interesting.  I was on a feed day today and feeling hungry as tea time approached.  My normal response here is to go get a snack.  Instead, even though I have no compunction to stay hungry, hungry I stayed.  It’s as if I am becoming used to hunger and accepting it as a normal bodily state rather than something to be feared and fought against.

On my second feed day, I had what the Germans delightfully call “Durchfall”, which means falling through.  As literal description as you’ll ever need.  I’ll let you figure that one out.  Could this be another coincidence?

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey (Week One Results)

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6 Aug 2012, day 1:  Okay, I cheated a little today.  Not a good start, but at least I don’t have to worry about falling later on!  I had a small breakfast, with no lunch, no snack and then a light meal to finish to day off.  Probably more like 800 caloriesrather than 600.  Today seemed remarkably easy, no real hunger pangs, which surprised me, and I feel pretty good in myself.  I’ve weighed myself in and I’ve hit 13 stone 5 pounds, a new and depressing record.  Quite some way off the 10 and a half stone I’d like to be.  Well there’s a motivator for me!  I’ve decided to keep this diet a secret from my family for now.  Perhaps that shows a lack of confidence in me or the diet?  There‘s been too many embarrassments in the past when I’ve grandly announced a new diet.

7 Aug 2012 day 2: I woke up feeling great.  Not good, but great.  I don’t doubt it really helped to go to bed on an empty stomach, something I rarely do.  You see, I have quite severe reflux up my oesophagus and night times tend to be the worst as I lie flat in bed.  My aim has always been not to eat for 3-4 hours before bedtime, but I rarely manage it normally.  Anyway, no doubt not have my insides burnt with acid has helped me sleep, hence why I feel so much better.

However, today I’ve really noticed the hunger pangs kicking in.  I’ve decided to have all my 600 calories in one go in the evening meal.  Mostly to make my diet compatible with family life, but also because I feel that going the full 24 hours without anything but fluids gives my body the best chance of going into fell-on repair mode and burning some of that nasty fat I keep lugging around with me.

I managed to resist temptation and had another small portion meal of what everyone else had.  I’ve got a few strange looks and questions asking me if everything is okay.  Clearly I normally eat a lot more.  I can’t help but feel smug as I stop eating before I’ve cleared my plate of every last molecule of grub.

8-12 Aug 2012: Feeling good to be able to eat normally again now.  Two consecutive days of fasting is about as far as I go!  Weighed myself at the end of the week, I’ve lost 5 pounds already.  I can’t take that at face value.  Surely it’s an error?  But no, Wii Fit and the household scales confirm it.  Wow.

By the last day of eating normally, I’m beginning to feel like a pig.  I’m eating cakes, chocolate and crisps as before, and I’m not enjoying it as much as normal.  In fact, by the 5th day, I feel desperate to fast again.  That’s not something I expected at the start!

Without prompting, my partner suggests that my tummy is looking flatter.  This is incredible.

For the first time ever, I have developed Conjunctivitis in my eyes.  I probably caught it whilst swimming at the gym, but infection is a known risk on low calories diets.  I hope this is a co-incidence

Pete – Guest Blogger

The 5:2 Diet: Pete’s Journey (Introduction)

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Forty approaches all too quickly. Not forty stone, thankfully, but the “life begins at” type of forty. Like most people my age, as the years creep by, the pounds sneak in with them. Where I was a slim, athletic twenty-something (okay, I wasn’t exactly a pin-up, but you get the idea), I’m now officially chubby.

My BMI is straying above the dreaded 25 and every effort I make to bring it down only seems to push it up more. I tried running again. That added 0.5 a BMI point. So I tried cutting out snacks, sweets and biscuits. That added 0.5 a BMI point too. Actually probably more as I pigged out when my resistance crumbled after a few short days. Or was it hours?

I still wear 32” trousers, but I’m only kidding myself. My waist is 34” and pushing upwards rapidly. Well, perhaps 36”. I try to live in denial, but the buttons keep popping off my trousers, or worse yet, I can’t actually get my legs to fit into my jeans, let alone my waist. Something has to change. As I keep telling myself from one week to another. Diet starts tomorrow!

Actually forty stone is only so many delicious cakes away. And then there’s the diseases of old age to fear, no longer something that happens to other people, but potentially something that could happen to me. My blood pressure is already lurching sky-wards.

And then I saw the BBC Horizon programme featuring the 5:2 diet. Here I could truly have my cake and eat it. Surely two days of 600 calories can’t be so hard? Can it? The main attraction, of course, being 5 days of not worrying and dealing with torturous self denial. Plus, not only could it help me control my weight, but it seems to be a powerful weapon in the fight against Alzheimer’s, amongst other things. Well, here goes… Diet starts today. Or maybe not a diet, but a whole new way of eating.

Pete – Guest Blogger

Update: Guest Bloggers on The 5:2 Diet Now Chosen!

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Earlier this week I wrote this post requesting articles from readers who’re taking part in the 5:2 diet.

I have received loads of really well-written and interesting articles from a selection of We Eat Things readers who would like to be guest bloggers documenting their journey.

Due to the high-volume of articles I’ve received, it was not possible to use everyone’s work, but I have chosen four great writers (so far) who will be sharing their stories with you over the next couple of months: Harriet, Juliet, Mickey and Pete.

You can follow their progress by clicking on their journeys on the right hand side of the page in the ‘categories’ section (for example, ‘The 5:2 Diet – Harriet’s Journey’).

I’m still accepting entries until 23:59 (GMT) today (Friday 17th August) so please submit your best work to me by then if you’d like to be a guest blogger!

Thanks to everyone who has given up their time for this project so far. I expect it’ll be very interesting to see how everyone gets on over the coming weeks.

Happy reading!