May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge

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May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge

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  • Welcome to the May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge!

    May is almost there, so it is time to set up a new challenge. The monthly challenges were started by @coda in May 2016 and many of us have benefited enormously from the generous and invaluable support given each and every month from our global community. Some of us are in maintenance while others are on the path of finding their happy weight.

    Below copied and pasted from a previous challenge as I can’t explain how this challenge works any better than this.

    So, here’s how this works (same as it has always been):-

    1. Start your daily post with the day of the month, where you are from, and if you’re on a fast day (FD); a non-fast day (NFD) or a controlled day (CD) – (e.g. for 1st of May it would go something like “Day 1 – Germany – FD” for me.)

    2. Give a quick intro about yourself in the very first post – mostly for the benefit of the newbies. A brief blurb about your journey so far and what you aim get from this way of life (WOL). Also if you wish, your starting weight and any other measurements (waist, hip, bust etc) you aim to keep track of throughout the month.

    3. You can add any comments/questions/moans/whinges/triumphs… or anything you feel like you want to share with the rest of the forum. We all have good days and bad days, days we fall off the wagon and days when we hang in there for dear life………so if you want to share it – post it.

    Recipes, tips, tricks and questions can also be shared – most of us are logged on at one time or another and can clarify things, offer advise, support etc when needed – this is the great thing about this international forum, there’s always someone online.

    Over the course of these monthly challenges, there have been small groups doing their own mini-challenges – called ‘pocket fasters’ or ‘pocketeers’ – they set a target and support each other through it. Anyone can join one of these groups or start a Pocket List – it’s entirely optional and flexible.

    5:2 basics – answers from the much appreciated @simcoeluv to many FAQs plus top tips:

    Being Dutch, speaking German most of the time, my biggest fear in hosting this challenge is to unwillingly hurt or offend anyone by choosing the wrong words or expression, something I never intend to do. I’m looking forward to a great month with all of you!

    Here’s the list of common abbreviations used throughout this challenge and added to on an ongoing basis:

    16:8 – 16 hours fasting 8 hours eating window
    5:2 – 5 days NFD:2 days IF
    ADF – Alternate Day Fasting (FD – NFD – FD – etc. etc. etc.…….)
    B2B – Back to Back (consecutive FDs)
    BMR – Basal Metabolic Rate
    CFD – Controlled Food Day (below your goal weight TDEE, eg 1000 calories)
    DAFD – Day after fast day
    DH,DD, DS – Darling Husband Daughter, Son etc
    DTF – Dry ‘Til Fri (for those limiting alcohol to weekend only)
    EE – Emotional Eating (reflex grazing out of a need for instant comfort instead of satisfying hunger)
    EFS – Epic Face Stuffing (we’ve all had one of those days – or several!)
    FD – Fast Day (500 cals)
    FD800 – Fast Day (800 calories) – see also MFD
    HUNGER DRAGON – that dreadful psychological beast that sometimes cannot be satisfied. Some people even name theirs (e.g. @i-hate-lettuce has an inner warthog!)
    IF – Intermittent Fasting
    Keto – way of eating that generates ketones
    K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple Stupid!
    LC – Low Carb way of eating
    LCHF – Low Carb High Fat way of eating
    LFD – Liquid Fast Day (incl. tea, coffee, miso, bone broth & water)
    LOL – Laughing Out Loud
    M/WOAM – Man/Woman on a Mission (courtesy of @i-hate-lettuce)
    MFD – Modified Fast Day (800 cals) on the new Fast800, it’s a FD
    NFD – Non Fast Day
    OH – Other Half (eg spouse/partner)
    OMAD – One Meal A Day
    PFDS – Post FD Smugness (courtesy of @penz)
    TDEE – Total Daily Energy Expenditure (see the ‘how it works’ link on the home page to work out yours)
    TRE – Time Restricted Eating
    WFD – Water Fast Day (Water only)
    WFH – Working From Home
    WOL – Way of Life
    WOCA – Women Of a Certain Age
    ZBC – Zero Breakfast Club

    Let’s make this month a good one for all of us!

    Day -2 !

    Hello @snowflake56

    Thanks so much for hosting the May challenge and the five year anniversary of this amazing monthly challenge format!

    Your English is absolutely amazing and I always love your posts! They’re always interesting and/or fun and we often seem to share the same challenges 😊

    Looking forward to joining you on the May challenge when it comes! Will answer all above questions on May 1st xx

    Day -2. Very funny. OMAD London

    Please count me in for the May challenge. I’m 64, and have been on the forum for about 3 years. Have lived in London for 27 years, originally from West Yorkshire so still consider myself a ‘Tyke’ even though I left to go to art school in Birmingham when I was 19, and only returned to find my husband, and then moved here. I read all the comments, but don’t post much, and don’t weigh myself because for me it’s counterproductive. I do OMAD because it cuts out lots of decision making! But I’m here all the time, ticking away in the background….

    Dear @snowflake56 thank you for taking up the hosting baton for May and I’m definitely in with you 🤗

    Please find the link for the spreadsheet for anyone who wishes to us it – please let me know if all can access

    I’m in. Thank you @snowflake56 for hosting. See you on the 1st!

    Day -2, 2nd post

    Dear @at Thank you so much for making the spreadsheet again, it’s very comforting to have you with me next month! 🌷

    @fivetwofan5252 Hi, nice to have you on board next month! I sometimes have sudden attacks of bravery and hosting the next challenge is a result of the attack I had this morning. The problem with responding in English lies in finding the right words, I often struggle to say what I mean.

    @emma-taylor Good to have you with us again, just post as often as you like! I just learned my first new word in this challenge: “Tyke”. I had to look it up but couldn’t find out where it originates from.

    @nellen Welcome to you too! Next month I’m joining you in maintenance, perhaps together we can find a good way to stay there forever. I know I’m not good at it and need all the help I can get!

    I’m in. See you on the 1st! 🙂

    Day 0 – USA/GA

    I am a 46 y/o male in northeast Georgia in the US, and have lost 56 lbs since January 2020, the overwhelming amount of which has been thanks to 5:2. My weight loss has slowed considerably, but after a long plateau, it is bumping slowly downward. I hope to continue downwards this month. My goal is to lose an additional 69 lbs to get to a mid-range healthy weight (although truthfully, if I get to the high end of “healthy”, I’ll be thrilled). I am also hoping to no longer be categorized as “obese” by the end of summer. This month, my goal is to get to 219 lbs by the start of June. Good luck to everyone!

    Day 0 – Canada

    @snowflake56 – thank you so much for hosting. I always love your thoughtful posts and look forward to reading them every morning. I will need your guidance for May. I think I’ll try the every other day fast to see how it goes, it seems to have worked for you.

    I’m a 60 yr old woman living in a smallish city on the east coast of Canada. I’ve lost about 30 pounds over the last year and I’d like to lose about 8 more. I’ll know my goal weight when I get there but I think it’s about 128 lbs / 58 kilos. This forum is very helpful and everybody is so supportive. Looking forward to it.


    Snowflake56, thank you for taking up the May mantle. Count me in!

    Thank you so much for offering to host this month, @snowflake56. Please count me in.

    This is indeed the 5th anniversary of the challenges, and I’m so happy to still be here ( off and on over the last 5 years) for the support and encouragement of this group.

    And a special congratulations to @songbirdme for being the ONLY one who has been on these challenges from the very first one of May 2016, and has never missed a single challenge! Amazing!!!

    Day -1

    @songbirdme Congratulations on your 5th year anniversary! It’s really special having someone with us who has been here since @coda started the monthly challenges. You’re also one of the few that managed to stay in maintenance for such a long time. I hope you can share your wealth of knowledge with us, you are where we all want to be!

    @northgeorgia Welcome to another challenge! You did have an interesting last month but your weight stayed the same, not too bad. I don’t think your April was lost, it brought you the knowledge you can use this month.

    @dvw It’s good to have you on the next challenge esp. with half of my mojo! We have about the same weight goal so it’s doable, I got there and I’m sure you will get there too. The last pounds are always the hardest but they will come off. I enjoyed doing ADF last month because it’s so simple, I don’t want to think too much about what to eat when I try to lose weight. For me 5:2 is more challenging because it’s so easy to skip FDs and for me that often means leaving them out.

    @ccco Welcome to you too! I love to read about new adventures with your grandson. Is the weather already warm enough to teach him how to play golf?

    @northerndawn Congratulations also for being 5 years on these challenges! Although you’re not participating in every challenge, I admire you’re determination to take care of yourself and your health. You spoke wise words, I always think I can do it on my own but I found out I can’t.

    See you all tomorrow at the first day of the May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge!

    Day 0 – England

    Hi all and thanks @snowflake56. I’d like to join in if that’s ok.
    I’m very new to this, being towards the end of my first week doing 5:2. I started trying to shed the pounds at the middle of March just calorie counting and I’ve managed to lose 14lbs. I wasn’t enjoying it though and came across the fast diet. Fast days this week were Monday and Thursday. I don’t usually eat breakfast and due to the nature of my job I occasionally miss lunch so I decided to try waiting until dinner before eating. On Monday this worked really well, I drank lots of water and had peppers stuffed with chilli and a side salad for dinner. Thursday was more of a challenge as I was much more active during the day, didn’t drink enough and consequently felt a little light headed until I got home from work and drank a litre of water. I made it through though and although I felt hungry in the afternoons of both FDs it was manageable and I’ve been able to keep well below my TDEE on NFDs. I suspect the weekend may be more of a challenge.
    Onwards and, hopefully downwards!

    Day 1, New Zealand, NFD

    Thank you @snowflake56 for hosting this month. I’m a 58 year old female from the South Island of New Zealand. Our eldest daughter is getting married at the end of the year and I really want to look as good as I can for the photos. Its coming near the end of Autumn here in NZ, so soups are the go-to for fast days.

    Second Post;

    @brewster – It is true that fasting is harder in the first week or two, perhaps 3 weeks, tops. Be sure to drink adequate water: 2-3L. Your body and your mind adapt to fasting fairly quickly. By the end of the month it will probably seem easier.

    Tell yourself when fasting that whatever you are wanting can be had the next day, the NFD day.

    You may discover, like most of us here have, that you no longer want it when you can have it.

    The “ease” of fasting does seem to depend on your NFDs right before your FDs, as to how hard or easy a FD is. If you have lots of sweets and simple carbs the day or two before a FD, it will be hard to turn off those cravings for more carbs. That is what most of us here have found to be true. If you eat sensibly the day before your FDs with protein, vegetable type carbs, and some healthy fats, that will help you feel fine on FDs. It’s only two days a week, if you’re doing 5:2, and that is not so hard.
    I’m glad you are here on the forum with us! Wishing you the best!

    Day 1, Emden Germany, NFD

    Good morning everyone on the first day of the May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge!

    I’m a Dutchwoman living in the North of Germany, married, 64 years old, 163 cm/5’4″ tall. My weight was 56 kg/123.5lbs all my adult life until starting a new job in 2011 where my weight crept up to 72.9 kg. I read the book and joined the challenges on and off from March 2017 on. I lost 20 kg very quickly but gained half of it back after retirement in March 2018. This morning my weight was 58.5 kg/129 lbs, well within my maintenance range of 58-60 kg/128-132 lbs. I’m back in maintenance again and hope to stay there from now on.

    @brewster Welcome to our small and friendly group, of course you can joy us! Losing weight through calorie counting worked very well for you, 14lbs in 6 weeks is good start. The nice thing about 5:2 is that it allows you to eat a normal amount of calories on 5 days a week and only have to restrict your calories on 2 days. I see that @northerndawn has already reacted to your post and I can only agree with her very good advice. On weekends I always try to eat healthy foods that fill me up for a while to prevent myself from snacking. When I feel a bit light headed on my FD, a pinch of salt mostly helps. If you have any questions, feel free to ask, there is often someone on line to give you an answer. I added your name to the spreadsheet in case you want to use it.

    @wacm How nice you’re joining us for another challenge! On the April spreadsheet I saw that you did pretty well last month, you lost 2.3 kg, congratulations! It’s such a nice goal you have, looking good at your daughter’s weddings is also a good motive.

    Have a nice day everyone!

    Day 1 – Lake District UK – NFD

    Good morning everyone

    Thanks to @snowflake56 for leading the way this month, hope everyone has a good one.

    I’m here yet again, the next monthly challenge, ‘found’ this group in July 2019 and never looked back! I’m a 65 year old bloke who over the years had put on a lot of weight, but thanks to this WOL have now lost a load, feel and look (so I’m told) a lot better!

    Since joining the monthly challenges in July 2019 have lost 60 pounds / 28.6 kg BMI down from 38 in July 2019 to 29.4 (last month put on 2 lbs so just need to shift that this month!)

    I have found the help and encouragement of the members of this group fantastic. The 5:2 WOL really does work, especially with help of my forum friends.

    Hobbies, walking, brewing craft beer, baking bread, rugby union (watching these days, my playing days are long over) and gardening.

    Aim for the moment is maintaining, this WOL has become a habit for me and just simply works! I also have one day a week ‘off’ eat anything I want, beer pizza cake, just not to excess then straight back on the 5:2 wagon, it works!

    @brewster – Welcome to the group, Monday and Thursday are my FD’s so see you on the wagon/pocket lists!

    Take care all

    Day 1 UK NFD

    Morning all – Thank you for leading us @snowflake56 – I didn’t realise the originals club was so small

    I joined @coda on that first challenge 5 years ago and got to my happy weight and happily maintained for a few years but I guess I got complacent, forgot some of the basics and a few overindulgent holidays etc and voila! back to square 1 I’m a terribly slow loser but I’m now on the upper range of my happy weight and think another few pounds off and I’ll be happy I’m now concentrating on eating healthy and getting in the best shape I can Looking forward to our journey during May

    Have a good day and be kind to yourself

    Day 1 – Canada – FD

    Good morning. May will be a serious attempt to get closer to my goal of 128 lbs. I’m going to try ADF to kickstart this month. Today will be coffee, a boiled egg, white fish and veg – with lots of water! This past month has been a snack fest so it’s time to renew my acquaintance with willpower. 🙂

    @snowflake56 – thanks for giving me a bit of your mojo, I’m sure it will help.

    Take care all.

    Pocket list

    Day 1 Manchester, UK NFD.

    Thanks for your kind words of welcome and support everyone. I’m a 52 year old woman looking to shed another 35-42lbs. My first week on 5:2 has been good and it seems to be a WOL I could get used to. Had a bit of a blip last night as a Friday night glass of wine turned into several and I ended up over my TDEE. Not downhearted though as this has to be sustainable. Back to business today.

    @Ihatelettuce, I’m a brewer too, hence my name. How do you manage to not drink the fruits of your labour? I haven’t brewed anything since I started trying to lose weight for fear of too much temptation – I have a keg system and tap in the kitchen. I’m itching to brew a lager and a blonde ale for the summer though!

    Have a great day everyone.

    Day 1 – Rural Nebraska, USA – NFD

    Yesterday began at 7am in my herb bed and didn’t end until 9:30 when we got home from a wedding rehearsal and dinner, and I was sad never to have managed time to post. I felt like I ate with abandon, but apparently not, as my weight this morning was a surprising and delightful 148.0. I’ve really been working at remembering the “eat reasonably on NFDs” part of this WOL. Other NFDs for the past many days have put me at 149-something, so I think I can actually say I’ve lost a pound if I’m 148.0 after an NFD.

    I’m a 62yo female who’s been fighting weight gain for 18 years, ever since we began the adventure of my DH going to seminary and becoming a pastor. I’m 5’4″–well, I WAS; I’m probably 5’3″ now–and I’ve been as high as 166 and as low as 136 (just for one day) and then back to 165 with stops along the way. On 2-26-20 I committed to resuming 5:2 in earnest (instead of pretending I was doing it, LOL) and lost ten pounds relatively quickly and easily. Then came the reality of “eating reasonably on five days a week,” and the weight loss ground down to almost nothing. At 148.0 this morning, I’m down 17 pounds since I began again, and must lose 8 more to be at a healthy BMI, and then an addition 8-15 at that point–I figure I’ll know my ideal weight when I reach it.

    @brewster Welcome! The weekends are indeed tougher for many of us; good luck with finding your own “reasonable” and sticking to it! As to beer (DH and I also brew beer, although nothing recently), many of us have found a Dry ’til Friday (DTF) is effective; we’re not cutting it out entirely, but we’re also now indulging daily. My though, and I think others’, is that this must be a way of LIFE, not a way of denial.

    @wacm How fun to be planning a wedding! Good luck on the weight loss journey!

    Thanks, @snowflake56, for being our host today; until you said so last fall sometime, I never realized English wasn’t your first language because you do so well, so have no fear!

    I have a three-layer white cake to make today for my great-nephew’s 21st birthday tomorrow, for which I need to run to town and buy a third pan, and a wedding later, and some more yard work that includes clean up from yesterday’s yard work, so it can’t be ignored–it’s another busy day. Hopefully that will help me stick to “reasonable” today.

    And I believe I’ve found my new mantra: may we all find the awareness and the discipline to be “reasonable” today!

    Day 1 USA (Illinois) OMAD

    FIVE YEARS! Wow … a wonderful anniversary.

    I am Gwynne, 73 years birthday tomorrow, female, a singer, choir director, retired school music teacher, pianist and instructor living in northwest Illinois. We get all the seasons here. That’s what I like about our climate.

    I began 5:2 in March 2016 after getting near to 200# (90kg) at 5’6″ (1.67m). I had gotten down to 160# previously and thought that was a good goal. South Beach Diet had long since stopped working for me. I found this forum for the May ’16 challenge with @coda and found this international band of travelers to be most supportive and excellent companions. I got down to 160# (72.5kg) by the end of 2016 doing a strict 5:2 with very controlled eating and the help of MFP (My Fitness Pal) to count calories. I still maintain the free MFP account and find it wonderfully accurate for calories. I don’t use it for exercise tracking. This weight puts me right at 25 BMI, and I’m happy with some extra fluff to keep some age-caused wrinkles away.

    I like to cook for me and DH – 4 kids and 5 grands all live pretty far away. Maintenance takes a LOT OF WORK doing a 6:1 regimen. I have found Silver Sneakers to do an hour exercise routine 3x a week.

    I look forward to continuing our journey with we “regulars” and getting to know our newbies.

    Onward and downward.

    USA. Day 1. FD

    Welcome to May, everyone! Sorry I have been missing but this time of year normally gets pretty busy! I am joining this month’s challenge and putting myself on today’s pocket list.

    Pocket list Day 1

    Have a great weekend, everyone!

    Day 1 – USA/GA – NFD

    Man, my body seesaws a lot. Today I’m back at 226 lbs to start the month. A 3 lb gain in a day. Sugars and salts. Yeah, I wasn’t that good on Friday. Next week will be difficult with a working lunch on Wednesday and a working breakfast on Thursday. My plan is to shift 5:2 to Sunday and Tuesday next week, and be extremely mindful on Wednesday and Thursday, making any supper on those days very light.

    Still, let’s think positive, be careful with our meals and snacks, and head downwards. I’m going to set my goal for 219 this month anyway. I need to motivate myself to get out of this rut. 🙂

    Have a great weekend.

    Day 1, 2nd post

    @i-hate-lettuce Great to have you with us again this month! It’s a joy to read your positive, uplifting posts every morning.

    @brightonbelle Happy 5th anniversary on this challenge to you too! The original group was much larger but you, @songbirdme and @northerndawn are the only ones still participating in the challenges. It’s the same with me, as soon as I forget the basics, I’m heading back to were I once was and never wanted to be again. Every time I gain weight it’s harder to get it off again.

    @dvw Next week we can do FDs together, I plan to fast on Mo-Wed-Fri. Together it will be easier and I’m certain I’ll need a few FDs next week after this weekend.

    @brewster Ha, my DH was right, as he heard the handle of our new group member. You’re our 3rd beer brewer. Is there no way to incorporate your home brewed beer in your new WOL?

    @stitchincarol Lovely to have you here on this challenge, I always enjoy you chatty posts. We’re stuck in an endless lockdown so life is a bit boring without much input from the world outside. I like doing things in different languages, but it’s often challenging. My syntax, punctuation and style are not the best in English but I can live with it.

    @songbirdme Every time I read you manage to stay in maintenance doing 6:1, I’m in awe. How do you do it? I need at least 2 FDs a week to keep my weight the same.

    @dvw and @ccco Good luck on your fast today!

    Have a nice evening and see you all tomorrow!

    Day 2, Emden Germany, NFD

    Good morning everyone!

    We have a great tit couple breeding in one of the birdhouses. We can’t look into the house but the parents are flying on and off. Last year they had two small ones but they died. The cats are a problem too, we have five cats that visit our garden every day and they hunt and catch everything from butterflies to doves. I know it’s nature but it’s not a nice sight. The Dutch author Kees van Kooten wrote a beautiful short story about a baby blackbird his daughter found and raised. After releasing Thijs the blackbird, it doesn’t end well. He gets eaten by their own cat.

    It’s a cold day again. We plan to go for a long walk and afterwards the wood burner will warm us up again. My DH plans to finish his book and I’ll go on working on a tablecloth I started stitching about 20 years ago.

    Have to stop, my breakfast is being served. See you all later on the day!

    Day 2 – Lake District UK – NFD

    Good morning everyone

    Come on weather, another chilly start to the day, there’s a greenhouse that needs a starvation diet not a 5:2 FD ! It’s overflowing, could do a decent cartoon of a greenhouse with bulging glass sides! However, next few days are looking promising, so have a plan to oust some of the less tender plants to outside the greenhouse and drape with fleece overnight for protection.

    Heading out this morning for a decent walk, then back and crank up BBQ for a whole chicken (spatchcock chicken with loads of herbs or spices) Bank Holiday weekend here in the Lakes yesterday was manic, queuing to get off the motorway in the morning! We did a 5 mile walk locally and hardly saw anyone. Going through the woods and across the meadows soon so avoid the numbers which will be around the estuary today.

    @brewster – brewing, baking bread and BBQ’s, how does it fit in with weight loss? Well, fairly simple to be honest, be aware of what and how much you’re eating and drinking.
    My week is split up, Friday weekly weigh in morning, but then Friday is my 5:2 ‘day off’ within reason eat/drink what I want (but after following 5:2 for almost 2 years now, find I no longer over indulge, I’ve got to a target weight and am staying within 2 lb of that, anything further I know the answer and would get stricter with myself (If we’re honest we all know we ‘con ourselves as to calories consumed at times)
    The beer is easy, don’t drink every day, Monday and Thursday are my FD’s if I’m not feeling particularly hungry on other days I don’t push myself to eat more! So that leaves 4 days a week to just be sensible, sure if you want a beer, have a beer, just don’t head into the bottle store and get half a dozen out, I count each bottle as 400 calories consumed, so if I fancy a beer and the food calorie count is OK I’ll have a beer or even two. But don’t do it every day.
    Similarly brewing the stuff, higher ABV = Higher calories, I generally keep my beers at around 4% and go for a variety of hops to ring the changes, IBU can still be kept fairly low so it doesn’t become too acidic, colour can be darker by adding toasted grains or similar adjuncts so it’s not always light. Plus I started brewing smaller batches ie 15 litre a while ago (around 24/26 bottles) friends come around for a bbq or when we go to theirs plenty of beers (even a number of the lasses actually prefer the beer to wine) so I have a good turnover and I can have the brew day fun of playing with recipes.

    Take care all

    Day 2 – Manchester, UK NFD.

    Yesterday was back to normal thankfully. During my NFDs I’m trying to keep the high GI carbs to a minimum, so have swapped out normal spuds for sweet potatoes where I can and have upped the amount of veg I’m eating to compensate for less pasta, rice or potato. I’m trying to leave them out altogether on my FDs and on Thursday I swapped out the rice for cauliflower couscous which was quite nice.

    As I don’t eat breakfast generally and am not a snacker, I’m finding it almost impossible to get anywhere near my TDEE. Is this going to cause me problems?

    @i-hate-lettuce. Thanks for the advice. I love more traditional British and continental beers so, apart from the odd high abv Belgian style, most of my beers tend to be around 4-5%. My DH doesn’t like the Belgian ones anyway. I can modify my recipes down to 4% so will try that. Not a hophead so the IBUs tend to be low too. My beers go on tap so just putting a couple in the house is not really a flyer but I’m mostly managing to keep alcohol free during week days and none on FDs so I think I’m going to crank the boiler up, put the fermentation fridge on and brew a lager for the summer.

    Not much planned for today. My DH will be working on his racing car in the garage for much of the day so I’ll be doing a workout when the MotoGP isn’t on, taking the shopping to my parents and dusting off my brewing kit for a long, bank holiday brew day tomorrow. FD tomorrow so it will keep my mind off the food.
    Well that’s the plan!

    Day 2 – Canada – NFD

    Good morning everybody.

    Had a very good FD yesterday. I’m doing my best not to fool myself into thinking I’m eating less than I am. Today I’ll take a long walk near the ocean. We don’t have the crowds @at and @ihl experience but Sundays are quite busy.

    @snowflake56 – MWF FDs sound great! Thanks.
    @brewster – I’ve never had a problem reaching my TDEE, most likely because I like to snack. Maybe you could add a few nuts?

    Take care all.

    Day 2 – USA/GA – FD


    Yes, I have discovered my body is in a civil war against itself, not only in its causes to either “got to maintain and add a few pounds before we shrivel up and die (what an exaggeration)” or “let’s keep moving downward; getting healthy feels great.” But I’m also noticing a struggle between “these junk foods should be enjoyed and eaten” and “you don’t really find these treats to be that tasty or enjoyable any more.”

    Friday and Saturday were disasters, skyrocketing 4 lbs from Friday’s low weigh-in of 223 to today’s weigh-in of 227. Although assuredly mostly water retention from too much salt and sugar, I’m pretty sure I exceeded my TDEE yesterday. Kroger had frozen pies on sale, and I just had to get a Key Lime for myself. Thankfully, I said no to the carton of ice cream. That’s OK. I’ve got a strategy posted on my refrigerator door, and I’m going to add to it today. Although our side lost the battle, we have triumphantly discovered another weakness in the enemy camp. I was invited to pizza at my brother’s house yesterday afternoon. I took two medium slices of Papa John’s with a side of soft drink and discovered … this doesn’t actually taste so appealing to me. Normally, I would really enjoy something after not having it for a while. I wonder if other pizza chains would have the same effect. I wonder if other fast food chains would. I wonder if other types of junk foods would. Could it be that I’m now being repulsed by what used to be temptations? Oh, if only LOL

    There are plenty of salty and sweet temptations out for me (like the pie, but also french fries, fried chicken, Kripsy Kreme! haha)

    So what to do with the pies, the pizzas, the potato crisps, the doughnuts?

    First of all, I have to stop buying them. I don’t have any Krispy Kreme in my house, or I’d demolish half a dozen without a second thought! But I still get occasional temptations to buy things like Doritos, and mmmmmm, Key Lime pie! Admittedly, I do pretty well here, but could resist impulse buys a little more often. The sales tripped me up this time.

    Secondly, with foods that I bought but don’t find particularly appealing, I need to give those away to family that would enjoy those. Why on earth do I have store bought cookies? Or Cheetos? I don’t eat those. Also on sale this weekend were restaurant style tortilla chips and cheese dip. I love cheese. But the tortilla chips were still overly salty for my taste, and the cheese dip — meh, it’s good, but I’d rather eat a little bit of fresh mozzarella or a piece of Colby Jack on the side with a meal. So, I will probably be sending those to a new home this afternoon.

    Thirdly, foods that are REALLY appealing to me and yet loaded with salts or sugars: well the nice thing about 5:2 is that you don’t have to deny yourself those treats, but you do have to be sure not to, for example, eat the entire pie. Half of it is going home with other family this afternoon. I’m also thinking of savoring temptations on the weekends and keeping NFD weekdays simple and under TDEEs.

    Fourthly, with being offered food that has lost its glimmer such as Papa John’s: “no, thank you.” Or if discovered in mid-meal, don’t clean the plate — if I’m not impressed after two bites, I won’t be impressed after twenty. If eating out, save for later and give away.

    Fifthly, slowly replace the junk foods with more nutritious substitutes. For example, I love Pizza Rolls. Probably won’t give them up for a while. But if I had the temptation of some pasta in a homemade Ragu sauce with meat and finely chopped vegetables, I’d likely choose the pasta over the snack. Even if the calories were the same, the pasta would be more nutritious, satisfying, and filling. Add a side salad/soup/vegetable for a meal, and even more so. Outside of the pie incident, I’ve been purposefully converting my kitchen into a “dessert desert” LOL! Very hard to find chocolate or sugary treats, and if I find them, they are tiny little pieces (like Hershey kisses). If I want something sweet, there are apples, grapes, and bananas (although these are usually saved for breakfast or mid-day snacks).

    Sixthly, be kind to myself on 5:2s. By kind, I mean that I should take time to research other protein and vegetable alternatives. Soup and beans have made up my default meals, but seasons change and tastes change. I was surprised to see that half a pound of chicken tenderloins had fewer calories than a can of beans, and about the same as a can of soup! Boiling up shrimp is surprisingly very low in calories! Butter spray is my friend as are dried spices. Alternating months between lettuce and cabbage has been useful. My body simply goes into rebellion over one or the other very suddenly. When that happens, time to stop buying one thing and switch it up to the other. And — there can be healthy leftovers for NFDs!

    So, to my refrigerator poster I shall add: “Don’t buy it, don’t keep it, don’t eat it all, don’t force it down, don’t treat it special, don’t be boring with it.” Making my sticky note right now!

    Looking forward to today’s FD and to getting into the 210s this month. I can do this.

    Pocket list day 2
    @northgeorgia (ZBC)

    Day 2 Florida USA FD Thanks @at for the Spreadsheet and @snowflake56 for hosting. Can’t believe we’re into May already. I lost 2 pounds in April. @northgeorgia Do you track food intake with an App. I use Lose It App (not for weight loss, just calorie tracking) It’s important for me to see that the 150 calories from a little bowl of my favorite Trader Joe’s potato chips are not worth it. I’ve used that in combination with the 5/2 since 2013. A broken bone and protruding disc are still keeping me from exercising , which is frustrating.

    Day 2, 2nd post

    @i-hate-lettuce Thank you for giving such good advice to @brewster!

    @brewster Like @dvw I also add some nuts if I haven’t reached my TDEE yet but it hardly ever happens with a TDEE under 1400 cals. A bit of cheese also helps.

    @dvw Your long walk near the ocean sound so nice, you do live in a beautiful part of the world. I’m also glad to have you with me on my FDs next week, I know we can do it if me make healthy filling choices.

    @northgeorgia Have you ever thought of making a weekly meal plan and a shopping list before you do your shopping? I find shopping a lot easier if I stick to the list and don’t look around to see what else there is in the shop. In Germany most of the foods on sale are the unhealthy ones, I assume it’s the same in other countries as well.

    @mogaman Welcome to you too! Your last month went well, a loss of 2 pounds is good. When do you think you’ll be able to do your exercises again, I know how important this is for you.

    Have a nice evening everyone!

    Day 2 Minnesota, US NFD

    Quick check in. Yesterday spent outside and at DD’s home grilling and enjoying the 90 F (32.2 C) day and sunshine. Not much humidity so it was a lovely and unusual May 1st.

    @songbirdme – Happy Birthday!!! I’ll leave the singing to you……Sing it to yourself from me, please.

    @snowflake56 – It is exactly the same for me: each time I gain back weight, it is harder and slower to lose it again. I suppose part of that is just due to increased age. Metabolism slows so much, even every 5 years. I guess that was a good thing throughout human history when food was not always abundant. But it makes it so much more difficult to maintain a healthy weight in these days when food is everywhere–for those of us lucky enough to live in developed countries. I must stay with this WOL for the remainder of my life, I know that, now. I have no excuses to stop the practice of this WOL, because I know what happens when I do.

    Day 2, 3rd post

    @songbirdme Happy Birthday! I hope you enjoy this day and many more to come! 💐

    @northerndawn How good I just read your post that reminded me of @songbirdme‘s birthday. It totally slipped my mind so thank you for being so attentive. I also think that I’ll have to stay with this WOL for the rest of my life. I know it’s doable but there seems to be something in my mind that gives me the illusion I can eat whatever I want and stay healthy and slim. After doing this for over four years I should know at my age it doesn’t work this way any more. It’s not always easy to accept this.

    Day 3, FD, Aus

    Hello everyone!! Thanks for hosting @snowflake56 – great to know this forum is still going.

    I am determined to do better this month. To be honest (with myself and you) I’ve not really done 5:2 at all this year and my clothes show it. I will do a FD today and Wednesday this week. That’s the plan and I will stick with it. It’s been a long time since I’ve done a FD and I know I will get hungry. I usually do a coffee-only FD but today I will allow myself some raw vegies if I really can’t stave off the hunger.

    Mindfulness. Will power. FDs. DTF. That’s what this month is about!

    Bit about me – married, no kids, two dogs. The dogs keep me moving but we’re about to hit rain all week which will keep us house bound. They’re always keen for a run no matter the weather but I dislike walking in the rain! I’ve been doing 5:2 on and off for years, and like so many of you, when I stick to it, it works. When I don’t, the weight creeps back up. I want to be on a downward trajectory and abandon this yo-yo approach.

    Day 3, Emden Germany, FD

    Yesterday’s planned walk didn’t happen, it rained all day long and it will stay this way all week accompanied by storm. I don’t really mind, there are lots of indoor things to do.

    @penz I’m glad you’re here! It’s not easy for most of us to stick to this WOL, we know it works but there are too many temptations around. Being here shows we haven’t give up and that’s a good thing. How do you keep the dogs happy if they can’t go out for a run?

    Pocket list day 3

    Have a nice day everyone!

    Hello @snowflake56. Thanks for putting me on the pocket list. The problem with being on this side of the world and among the early ones each day, is that’s often very lonely for many many hours!!

    My dogs are Australian Cattle Dogs. They’re a working breed which means they demand a lot of exercise. Fortunately, they’re also very intelligence so if I can give them a mental job to do, that can wear them out as much as a physical job. I teach them new tricks or run them through their existing ones. I can usually get away with one day not taking them out for a run, but a week of rain will be a challenge! I will probably have to don the gumboots and rain coat to drudge outside with them at some point. And they do like to wrestle and play chasies with each other so they’re not completely inactive without my intervention.

    Day three, UK, FD.

    Fasting today after an extremely gluttonous bank holiday weekend here in the UK so far!

    I’m also super busy with work so unfortunately not doing as much exercise as I would normally like to be doing……

    Second post

    I am posting from my mobile so I dare not edit my above post as it might go AWOL for three days ha ha ha

    Sorry forgot to say the bit about me

    I am female, aged 50 about 5 lb above my ideal weight

    I really need to do some serious successive fast days this month to lose that last 5 lb as I have been hanging around at this weight now for about two months!

    I initially found fasting through Dr Michael Mosley’s book in about 2013 and then I found this website maybe in 2015 or 2016, I can’t really remember.

    I was ill last year with long covid so I put on the weight over that 6 month period

    5:2 and fasting etc definitely work but it’s tough getting around to doing it hahaha!

    @penz – Sorry to hear that the rain is keeping you locked in… At least you’re not travelling for work for once! 🙂

    Third post, sorry!

    Pocket list day 3

    Brilliant post, very funny and also what a great strategy
    It looks like you’ve put a lot of thought into this and I love the noticed that you have put on your fridge door 🙂

    Day 3 – Lake District UK – FD

    Good morning everyone

    Fabulous walk yesterday, slightly different route from home, new ground, I know some of you love our local names! Out to the crossroads at the top of the village, down into the woods at Teddy Heights, through the farm at Hazelslack, along Dollywood Lane out to Leighton Beck Road. First time, turned left along the road to Slack Head, by this time it had started raining quite steadily, but we were over half way and no short cut! then up through Underlaid Wood to the Fairy steps. A long meander through the woods dropping down to Cockshot Lane and heading for home down the only minor shotcut, the aptly named Throughs Lane via Yans Lane and home, as we approached home, the sun came out! 6 miles but worth every stride, third day in a row a decent walk.
    slept like a log and feeling good this morning.

    Bank holiday Monday and its raining already! We can afford a day off wandering today, jobs at home day.

    Take care all.

    Pocket list day 3

    Day 3 – Canada – FD

    Good morning everybody.

    Looking forward to a good FD today and staying with the meal plan from Saturday- egg, haddock and veg. Lots of coffee of course. Managed to walk 10 kms yesterday and I’d love to make it a daily activity. Today I’m going to explore another walking trail that ends at a waterfall. I hope everybody has a successful day.

    @snowflake56 – thanks for adding me to the pocket list, it helps to know I’m not alone especially when I have friends encouraging me to eat more.
    @ihl – love the charming and creative names in your part of the world 😊

    Pocket list day 3

    Day 3 – Manchester, UK FD

    Good Morning all. Good day yesterday again. Below my TDEE again by about 400 calories, even with a couple of beers in the evening during our Zoom family quiz night.
    Took my elderly parents their shopping. They’ve now had both doses of vaccine but they’re still being a little cautious. It’s lovely to get to see them even if it’s only for a short period of time. I’m looking forward to May 17th when restrictions are lifted and I can go inside and spend some time with them. I have sisters but 2 of them live in Devon and the other in Perth, Australia so I’m the only family they see regularly.
    I managed to get a workout done in the afternoon before making a beef stir fry for dinner. Meals tend to be a bit of a challenge as my 17 year old DD doesn’t like onions, peppers, tomatoes or sauces of any kind, my DH doesn’t like peas and my son, when home from university doesn’t like anything too spicy and mushrooms. I will eat pretty much anything apart from avocado and nuts. DD has to go with the flow most of the time and I try to keep the things she’s not keen on to a minimum.

    Today I’m having a FD so only had my usual cup of tea so far – I tried to go without it on my last FD but I really enjoy a cuppa first thing. I’ll be drinking lots of water and the odd cup of tea until dinner.
    I’m also brewing today, a lager with some hops from New Zealand which give a nice lemon/lime hint. It makes a really refreshing drink in the summer. The process usually takes about 5 hours from start to clean up.

    @northerndawn. You seem to be having the best of the weather at the moment. It’s a cold and wet start to the month here. Enjoy!

    @songbirdme. Happy belated Birthday. Hope you had a lovely day.

    Back to work tomorrow, off up to Glasgow for the day so I probably won’t post until the end of the day. I’ll wave as I go by the lakes on the M6 @i-hate-lettuce. Love all the local names btw. My favourite around Manchester is Welly Hole Street in Oldham!

    Hope you all have a great day.

    Pocket list day 3

    Day 3 – USA/GA – NFD

    Quick check-in: 225 lbs. I’ll be mindful today. I had my oatmeal/banana and a boiled egg this morning, so I should be satiated through early afternoon. Packed my lunch, and for supper … a light vegetable only soup I prepared yesterday. The soup should sustain my supper times on my NFD Wednesdays and Thursdays with a light calorie meal, when I will have working lunches and breakfasts. Let’s think positive this month!

    Day 3 UK NFD

    Moved my usual Monday fast to Tuesday this week, lazy day today Will get back into gear tomorrow I’m with you @northgeorgia Let’s think positive 💪

    Day 3 – UK – FD

    What a wet and windy day here in Cumbria just as predicted…….it certainly looks set to stay with us for the whole day……no walks today so caught up with some much needed housework this morning!!

    Day 1 – Did a great hike of around 11km and just under 500m height gained – from Ambleside to Brathay then up to Lily Tarn via Fishgarths Wood (bluebells were just starting to come out – smelling wonderful!) and Todd Crag. From Lily Tarn to Ivy Crag then up to the top of Loughrigg – quiet and wonderful views. Came down the steep steps to Loughrigg Tarn then back to Ambleside via the shoulder of Loughrigg
    Day 2 – baking morning – spelt raisin scones (for OH who loves them and has a couple after his daily runs) and a Milli Taylor’s Brown Butter Banana Bread (one of our favourite versions) followed by a quick 8km walk before meeting a friend for lunch out in a cafe garden and I will admit it involved a rather nice glass of Picpoul de Pinet. However I had a light supper and managed to come in to TDEE for the day and hopefully setting me up for today’s FD

    My first FD for this May 2021 5th Anniversary Challenge – much needed after an indulgent long weekend, meeting with friends – so nice to be able to sit out and socialise but must keep an eye on my food/alcohol intake……so pressing my RESET button with a FD today

    For those new to the challenges a little bit about myself:-
    I am a 62y.o. female living with my DH, we have a married daughter who has 4 fur babies – 3 cats and an adorable beagle called Archie.
    I started this WOL on my own in January 2016 as I had gained weight during my last couple of years at work and was fed up with being overweight and wanted to enjoy my early retirement and get fitter!
    I decided to join the challenge in November 2016 as I had plateaued for around 3 months and managed to reach maintenance in early December 2016 and with the help of these challenges I have remained in maintenance range of 55-57kg/121-126lbs and a BMI of around 21 since then – Total weight loss = 22kg/3st 7lbs. Height = 165cm
    I will admit that it has not been all plain sailing and I have had a few wobbles especially in the last couple of years but with this WOL and sticking to the monthly challenges I have so far managed to stop any permanent unwanted upward trend.

    @brewster – welcome and you have had lots of good advice and a warm welcome already and it sounds like you are a ZBC fan too – it certainly has worked for me! and 14lbs lost since mid March is a great achievement 👍 I find trying to do a CD/TDEE the day before my FD really helpful to ease my mindset into the FD and I seem to have no problem reaching my TDEE (but it is only around 1500cal) the problem I have is not to go above it 🤣
    @songbirdme – Congratulations on your 5th year anniversary of this WOL and for staying in maintenance so easily! Belated happy birthday wishes for yesterday 💐
    @northgeorgia – loved your Day 2 post of WAR DECLARED!

    This month I am definitely going back to basics and sticking to it
    *2 x FD
    *3 x TDEE
    *DTF club – 5 alcohol free days
    *drinking a minimum of 2L of water per day

    Adding my name to the pocket list for motivation and support – will be needed I think
    Pocket list day 3

    DTF 🚫🍸🍷🍺🥂

    ZBC 🚫
    @at – every day!

    Exercise 🏋️‍♀️ 30×5
    @at (today 45mins aerobic via zoom)

    My personal motto since reaching maintenance has been “If I quit now, I will soon be back to where I started. And when I started, I was desperately wishing to be where I am now”

    Day 3 USA – NFD

    Thank you all for the kind birthday greetings. I even had several serenades 🎶, cupcakes 🎂 and 🍨 ice cream twice! DH took me out to dinner for my fave BBQ ribs and Caesar salad. Presents, connections with the 4 kids and granddaughters. All in all, a wonderful day. I’m not getting on the scale any time soon!

    @at yes, this is a “rest of my life” kind of maintenance. As daunting a task as that seems, I think the alternative of steady gain like I had before is just too unhealthy. I need to keep up my exercise regimen as well as MFP for daily calorie analysis. Just needs to happen.

    @northgeorgia – Amen! Your WAR was so wonderfully spelled out!

    Onward and downward.

    Day 3 – Rural Nebraska, USA – FD500

    That 148.0 from Saturday morning didn’t last, as I was just shy of 150 both on Sunday morning and this morning; thankfully, today’s FD will help with that. Yesterday was the birthday dinner for my great-nephew who’s attending college here in Nebraska; finals are over and he heads home to Missouri on Wednesday afternoon, so we jumped the gun by a couple days. And, as it’s his 21st birthday, I wanted to do it in style. He asked for “beef” so I made a 72-hour sous vide chuck roast. That is, hands down, the VERY best way to cook a a chuck roast, and it rivals a rib roast in flavor and presentation, but given how much cheaper it is, I’d say it’s actually better than a rib roast. I also made a three-layer white cake with vanilla frosting (his choice) and served it with champagne. So it’s no wonder the scale was hovering so precariously close to 150! I sent all but one slice with the birthday boy and with DS24, and DH took care of that slice last night, so those calories are neatly averted!

    After last week’s beautiful sun and warmth, our temperatures have dropped to the 50s/teens and we’ve gotten two inches of rain since yesterday afternoon. It makes any garden work impossible, but it’s needed rain, so I’m thankful.

    @songbirdme Happy, happy birthday yesterday!!! 🎈🎀🎁🎂🥳🎶🎵🎼🎹

    @northgeorgia Great post, very thoughtful and insightful. For what it’s worth, I can’t have ANY junk food in the house if I’m to have a prayer’s chance of losing weight because my TDEE at goal weight is a mere 1400. Thankfully, I’m slowly regaining my disinterest in junk food, and that makes it easier not to buy it, and not to eat what DH wants to have in the house. Have you tried shopping online and picking it up as a way of avoiding the temptations?

    @penz Welcome back; I’ve missed your chatter! Good luck on the FDs, on truly doing it, and being successful despite the hunger. I have enough experience with pretending to do 5:2, but not actually following through, that I well know how tough it is to be “honest” about it; I’ve got your back, friend!

    @i-hate-lettuce I just read to DH your description of your walk; we both chuckled at the delightful names. If I were to do a similar description? Walk two blocks on Oak Street, turn north on County Road 16, go a mile, turn east on County Road Q, go a mile, turn south on County Road 15, go…It’s just not as delightful, LOL!

    Wow, @brewster, what IS your TDEE? There’s zero possibility I could have two beers and eat reasonably and still be below my TDEE by 400 calories; I’m in awe!

    Pocket list day 3

    DTF 🚫🍸🍷🍺🥂

    ZBC 🚫
    @at – every day!
    @stitchincarol, every day

    Exercise 🏋️‍♀️ 30×5
    @at (today 45mins aerobic via zoom)

    I’m not yet committing to DTF or to resuming exercise; all I can be sure I’ll follow through on is a FD, so I’ll call that sufficient for now.

    Have a grand day, everyone, with success in whatever you strive to achieve!

    Day 3 North Canton OH FD

    This is the final week of our project, thank goodness. I am quite spent and cannot wait to see the end. Hopeful for a successful audit and then we are done.

    I would not say I fell off the wagon, but some days were so crazy that I could not eat the way I wanted, so I ate lots of nuts – cashews, almonds and pistachios. Very “healthy” but way over TDEE I am sure ( I stopped tracking), I also did not stop eating at noon or 1pm like I prefer to do.

    So this week, I am stepping away from the madness, fasting very other day and sticking to coffee( with 1 TBS of half/half)and sparking water on my FD. On NFD I will eat to BMR with 1pm as the cutoff for my feeding window. I am looking forward to eating a plant based diet with loads of veggies and fish as my main protein source. I really need a couple days off and I am looking forward to taking it when this project ends.

    Thank you for hosting May @snowflake56

    @songbirdme happy belated birthday 🎺🎼🎼🎼🎼🎼🎸🎹🎹🎹🎹 it looks like you had a joyous day. You deserve it and so much more

    I will catch up on everyone else soon, I promise.

    In the meantime keep the faith – and may the fast be with you all!!!!!

    Pocket list day 3

    DTF 🚫🍸🍷🍺🥂

    ZBC 🚫
    @at – every day!
    @stitchincarol, every day

    Exercise 🏋️‍♀️ 30×5
    @at (today 45mins aerobic via zoom)
    @basyjames -leg day

    Day 3, 2nd post

    @penz I’m not sure where in Australia you live, was it in Perth? Perth seems to be 6 hours ahead of our time so it’s noon in Perth if I post at 6 am. I’m always glad to see your post as I’m the first European posting most of the time. It would be fun to see your dogs doing tricks. My BIL had a bearded collie long ago, he could do a lot of tricks.

    @i-hate-lettuce and @at I also had to read out your lovely sounding street names to my DH, I esp. liked Dollywood Lane, Hazelslack, Cockshot Lane and Lily Tarn.

    @basyjames Lovely to have you with us again! DVW and myself are with you on Wednesday and Friday. Oh, it’s better to overeat on nuts than sweets. Why do you eat to BMR (no idea how much that is) on your NFDs?

    Have a nice evening everyone!

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