Welcome to The Fast Diet › The official Fast forums › Soul › Personal stories › My Journey – Pernetty
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14 Feb 20
After yearning to lose weight for years, I finally have found 5:2. It’s early days but I can tell already that it’s working. Clothes that didn’t fit are fitting, hunger cues are changing, energy is increasing.
I’ve been inspired by so many stories on this forum, I thought I deserved to write down my journey and hopefully pay it forward.
I started on February 1, 2020 and 14 days later I can see and feel the magic happening. Fast days are becoming easier and I can safely say I am committed to this long term.
The challenge will be my upcoming two- month trip to Europe; but I am determined to keep two fast days a week.
Un grand merci to all the folks who have shared their stories and inspired my journey with the 5:2 way.
15 Feb 20
More non scale victories: my mother’s rings, which haven’t fit for years (but I refused to resize) glided onto my fingers. Be gone inflammation!
My Levi’s size 29 jeans, which were unwearable are now on my body. And a pretty bra from 10 years ago also fits again.
All this progress in 2 weeks. Amazing?!
16 Feb 20
For the past few years my blood pressure has been borderline high. Just for fun I decided to check it today after my epic six fast days. Drumroll. 127/76. Pulse 70. Range normal.
17 Feb 20
I never thought this would work for me. I somehow believed it could work for everyone, and I would be the exception.
But it is working! And I’m over the moon about it.
My lowest adult weight was 115 pounds, when I was about 30 years old, eating very little and exercising a lot. Then, I met my would-be husband, and started eating and drinking wine. Little by little, pound by pound, my weight increased in small increments over 2 decades until I hit my all time high of 156 pounds.
I dabbled in Weight Watchers, (hated it), low carb, (I lost a few pounds but then I stalled). In hindsight, I was making too many low carb cakes. I tried intuitive eating, (that didn’t work either) and read about every diet book out there.
Then I stopped weighing myself. That was about five years ago. I know I haven’t gained much more since all my clothes still fit.
I am not a binger eater, I am not a yo yo dieter (I have never really lost weight, just gained), and thought I was destined to be this size as a fifty-something woman.
In fact, when I first came across the 5:2 diet a few years ago, I thought it was the craziest idea I had ever seen! But then I started to investigate it and finally realized there was something to it.
I started my 5:2 journey on February 1st. My first couple of fasts were clunky: I allowed myself up to 800 calories, just in case I got too hungry. Last week, I did three fasts in one week, M-W-F, to see how that felt and it was amazing.
That’s when I knew the magic was happening.
My plan is to do 4:3 when time allows. This week, with my son home from university, I’m doing a 5:2 with plans for a 4:3 next week.
I am not counting calories on NFD; to me, this defeats the purpose of giving the 5:2 a real college try in its plain vanilla style. I really don’t want to overcomplicate this or make it another DIET.
I have no final goal weight in mind. In my mind, I’ve already met my goal – TO LOSE WEIGHT. I believe my body will let itself use fat as fuel as I continue to fast. I already am feeling lighter on NFD, really enjoying the food, instead of feeling guilty about it.
So, here I am on FD #7. It’s 1 pm and I’ve only had coffee and tea and am looking forward to my instant cup of soup (50 calories) before my Pilates class.
Here’s to my 5:2 future!
I’m cheering your 5:2 future too, Pernetty. Isn’t it lovely when you can see it will be your way of life. 🙂
18 Feb 20
Pilates class just now:
“Hey, have you lost a ton of weight recently?”
asked my fellow student.
Wow, just 17 days later my waist is especially way more defined.
20 Feb 20
After three FDs last week, this week’s two feel like a breeze.
Tons of research later I’m learning that although 5:2 is great for fat loss, it also has other other benefits that range from boosting your brain power to fighting cancer and dementia.
Other benefits that I’m discovering:
* My eating on NFD’s has settled down.
* My digestion is improving.
* I have increased clarity and mental focus.
Now back to fat loss; it’s like the fat burning switch has been turned on. It seems to me the magic happens when the body begins to burn fat as a fuel source.
I can feel my tummy fat melting away. I love that!
24 Feb 20
It’s happened. I looked forward to my FD. I had three NFD days and enjoyed them thoroughly by including the foods I normally deny myself.
To be clear, I am not a glutton nor am I greedy with food but in the past, I have internally judged food as “good” or “not good”.
But now, I am dividing my judgement between two things – FD and NFD.
So, on my NFDs I enjoyed french fries, chocolate, a few desserts including some home baking. Nothing crazy or over the top, just normal eating.
Today, it’s back to business with an amazing cup of soup (how can it taste so good) and a boiled egg for lunch. I normally skip breakfast so my everyday habit is 16:8, which I have been practicing for the past year or so.
I have three FDs planned for this week as we’re heading to Europe next Sunday. Then, the fun begins on figuring out how to include FD on an extended vacation.
27 Feb 20
It’s rare for a “diet” to become easier the longer you’re on it. But, this is what I’m finding with FDs. They are becoming easier and easier to manage. Today I had coffee for breakfast, a cup of soup and a boiled egg for lunch, tea for an afternoon snack and will roll into dinner with baked fish and steamed broccoli.
The increased energy is a bonus – and not having to think or prepare food is liberating!
19 Mar 20
FD#11 was Feb 29.
Then it was a crazy 17 days in Europe before the chaos of covid-19.
During our time away, I managed a few OMADs (one meal a day), and then escaping Europe, it kind of turned into a few mandatory OMAD.
But, we were lucky, we got out of Europe and are now back home in Canada.
FD#12 March 18
It feels good to have a fasting day. God, I love those cup-a-soups.
24 Mar 20
FD#13 March 21
FD#14 March 23
Breakfast: coffee w/ tablespoon of cream, (50) calories
Lunch: cup of soup, (60); 12 almonds (90) + the world’s smallest apple (40)
Dinner: Stir-Steam: carrot, broccoli, ⅓ cup frozen peas, 4 frozen shrimp, soy sauce + hot sauce (180)
1% Kefir (70)
Total: 490 calories
This fasting day is best described as mildly challenging. I just had a FD two days ago; it almost felt too close together. My plan is to continue with a 2-day FD, next on on Thursday. I have to remind myself that it has to be doable in order to go the distance.
Go me! Not even a chance I would break a FD.
25 Mar 20
I had a very rough night after the last FD. It was very hard to sleep – it seemed like my biology to survive was telling me — “get up and find something to eat!”
I was up at 5:30 am ravenous. I normally don’t eat until lunch but I was starving – so I gave in and had breakfast, and then a hearty lunch. It was very odd. My appetite was very strong.
Cut to the day after. I slept way better and my appetite seems to be back to normal. Perhaps, three FD so close together was the trigger.
So, for the next month, I will maintain a 2x a week FD schedule.
Has this happened to anyone else?
30 Mar 20
I wasn’t going to try on any old clothes but I couldn’t resist. I really felt thinner this morning, especially my very strong, muscular thighs. Et voila, my famous black dress pants (from 2001, size 6 CDN) glided comfortably over them and fastened without struggle over my waist.
This is a serious NSV — I haven’t been able to zip them up since about 2007.
It’s funny what small clothes survived my gradual weight gain. For some reason, these high quality dress pants were kept in my closest, perhaps because they were a staple in my wardrobe at one time.
Talk about a Happy Dance!
I should mention that I don’t weigh myself and my clothes (from my closet archives) are the closet thing I have to measuring. It is very reliable as I know exactly what my weight was when they fit.
Maybe one day I will get back on the scale but for now, I’m enjoying the journey.
After my massive hunger attack after FD#14 and my higher calorie FD#15, my hunger returned to normal.
It was very easy to resume my “normal eating”, which is to say what I would normally consume before beginning 5:2. Like I said, my weight gain was very gradual and it had stopped a few years ago so my weight was very stable for a long time. I was not an overeater, an emotional eater or a binger eater.
So, I am following the original 5:2 advice — fast for two days and eat normally for five days.
Here’s to the last week of March, and hopefully a better April.
8 Apr 20
After a very rough FD#17 (too few calories) and another bad night, I decided to up the calories a little to see if that would help.
Yesterdays FD#18 was a breeze. By increasing my calories to 650 seemed to do the trick. I had a marvellous baked salmon with mango salsa, broccoli with butter and strawberries for dessert. And I always end a FD with a glass of low fat kefir, (so worth the 70 calories).
I’m finding that coffee for breakfast (with this great tasting coconut creamer, 10 cal per tablespoon) and a light lunch, (cup of soup and 12 tamari almonds) allows me more calories for the evening meal.
I slept much better and woke up not feeling hunger. A win.
10 Apr 20
My last experimental FD with 800 calories was a success! I kept the calories low during the day and had 600 calories in my pocket for dinner — spent them wisely on baked fish and extras like mango salsa, cut strawberries and some olive oil on roasted asparagus.
The result is I slept way better and didn’t wake up starving. I’m going with what Michael has recommended from last year; he saw that a 800-calorie FD could be as effective as a 500 or 600 calorie FD.
After reading many forums here, there’s a few things I’ve noticed:
1. People tend to want to complicate the Fast Diet by turning it into a 7/7 diet with a whole lot of calorie counting and mods that are not in the original book.
2. People make too many changes at once: FDs + calorie counting + excessive exercise + food restrictions. Which, we know, always backsfires. You can make proclamations until the cows come home but if the diet is too restrictive, it’s going to fail.
This new way of eating has to be sustainable for today, tomorrow, next week, next month and next year. Are you really going to be able to live without bread/pasta/rice/chocolate/treats for the rest of your life?
I’m taking the slow and sustainable route — I didn’t become overweight overnight, it happened slowly, about a pound a year. So, I reckon, I’ve got a year to lose, even a pound a month is a victory.
With the 800 FD, I’m easily managing to have a third fast day this week. I’m thrilled that my clothes are fitting better and that I’m sleeping better. For the first time, I can see that my face is becoming thinner (I’m blessed with a round face) and that my thighs are sleeker.
To me the magic of the Fast Diet is that your fast burning switch is turned on without a punishing, low calorie diet or excessive exercise.
2. People make too many changes at once: FDs + calorie counting + excessive exercise. Which, we know, always backsfires. You can make proclamations until the cows come home but if the diet is too restrictive, it’s going to fail.
This new way of eating has to be sustainable for today, tomorrow, next week, next month and next year. Are you really going to be able to live without bread/pasta/rice/chocolate/ treats for the rest of your life?
To me the magic of the Fast Diet is that your fast burning switch can be turned on without a punishing, low calorie diet or excessive exercise.
18 Apr 20
No Wine, Day #13
It just seemed like the right time to take a break from wine, and all things related to alcohol. The first benefit? Better sleep. As always, for me, the hardest part is thinking about Not Drinking. The actual Not Drinking is easy. There’s this moment at 5 pm when I crave a glass or three of wine but then the moment passes and I’m fine.
Wine is a powerful drug. I no longer ‘fall asleep’ watching a movie, nor do I get up at 3 am. I sleep like a baby and wake up refreshed.
For me, it seems to be an all or nothing proposition. I’ve tried moderating my drinking but I find it harder than quitting entirely.
Having said that, I know I will return to wine but hopefully, this time with a better understanding and firmer grasp on a 3:4 routine.
After reading some exceptional posts from others, I decided to stick to vanilla 5:2 (no 4:3 for now), and allow myself up to 800 calories. I never do hit 800 calories but just knowing they are there for me makes me relax.
As I experiment, I’m finding it easier to leave the lion’s share of calories for the evening meal. So, that means a few coffees and teas during the day along with a much needed cup of soup mid afternoon for the necessary sodium.
My waist is getting more defined (always the best part of my figure), with some muscle definition appearing in the upper abdomen. The fat seems to be hanging around the area below the belly button but I assume it will go eventually.
On the exercise front, I’m doing a slow jog (15 minutes) followed by 3 sets of sprints plus a push up challenge (so far 8 reps x 4 sets, and increasing) on FDs. I’m also cycling for 30 minutes a day with a long ride on Sundays.
Slow and steady, she goes.
28 Apr 20
Wine-Free Day #24
And steady she goes, encore. Completed another Fast Day easily — I’m finding that keeping the lion share of calories for the evening is a far superior strategy for me than dividing them during the day.
My new favourite Fast Day supper is a huge bowl of vegetable soup, followed by a glass of kefir and a small apple.
Other tweaks from last week, were experimenting with a Light Day (others call it a control day but I don’t like that word, control). It went very well. A Light Day is exactly what it sounds like: no breakfast, soup for lunch and a healthy-ish dinner with few carbs or sweets.
I’m also continuing with my two sprint days but I am thinking about adding a 3rd sprint day to fall on my Light Day.
I tried on my size 6 tweed skirt (circa 2005). Before I started there was a good 3-inch gap where the zipper would not close. This morning, the zipper glided up with generous wiggle room. How exciting!
9 May 20
Wine-Free days #35
For me, finding routines are a great way to build success. I’m continuing with the same-old menu for Fast Days and am building on the other day routines. Wine free has been extremely easy for me. Way easier than trying to limit.
I have increased Sprint Days to 3 days a week, and I now have a personal best for push ups. I started with two sets of 8 push ups back in the beginning of April and now can do six sets of 8 pushups. Hey, that’s 42 push ups. Mind you, they are women’s push ups but they are slow and deliberate.
Other recent mods include walking for 30 minutes on NFDs and keeping my Light Days. I’m thinking about adding 15-min of kettle bells on these days.
This is all possible because I allow myself relative freedom on a few days a week: the two days following each fast day. They aren’t crazy eating days but I allow myself bread, treats, chocolate, etc. But it’s pretty sensible as I do practice 16:8 seven days a week. That has been a habit developed for over 18 months.
A recent measure of success has been the famous black pants, which I’ve been able to wear now for a few months BUT there is now no evidence of a muffin top. Another victory has been a fitted jacket that has been in my closet for years now hangs properly, the waist button fits and there is no tightness around the arms or bust. Hooray!
This is a major victory. I’m still not weighing nor do I plan to. To me, keeping the routines and FAST days are more important than what a scale can do for me.
10 May 20
A Between-Fast-Day News Break…
This ain’t no joke. I’m wearing my vintage (2003) Banana Republic SIZE 4 linen skirt. The last time I wore it was the summer of 2006. Which, goes to show how insidious and slow the fat accumulation was – it took three years of slow fat gain to end this skirt’s career.
And on the menu last night? Homemade lasagne + homemade Angel food cake with whipped cream and strawberries.
Never in a million years would I have thought I could have my cake, eat it too and wear a size 4 skirt.
13 May 20
Hallo Pernetty. I have just discovered your journey posts and found them so inspiring.
I have dabbled on and off with 5:2 and did very well but last year had to go on to steroids and together with the Covid 19 lockdown and too much sitting around plus too many biscuits I am much bigger than I want to be. Steroids are reducing now so I will have to stop blaming them and face up to the fact that the remedy is in my own hands. So have just restarted this week trying to do a week on 800 calories although that may change at the weekend. Do keep posting and congratulations on your success so far.
1 Jun 20
Thanks for popping in to say hello! I’ve got more good news to report:
MAY REPORT CARD:
Fast Days: TEN (most were about 600-800 calories), I’ve following the gentle approach.
Run/Sprint/Pushups: ELEVEN, (this entails a 30-minute circuit of run/sprints with about 4 sets of 8 pushups afterwards). I do them on Fast Days.
No Wine Days: THIRTY. I had two glasses of marvellous champagne on DH’s birthday. Otherwise, I’m enjoying my new wine-free life.
My body continues to respond in wonderful and amazing ways. After my first post-Covid haircut, I noticed that the department store down the street from the salon was open. I tried on and bought a beautiful fit&flare Ralph Lauren dress, size? EXTRA SMALL. Never in a million years would I have thought this would work. As it’s a T-shirt dress and very fitted, there’s no where to hide.
My back fat continues to melt, (although my cup size is the same), my arms are more toned, my inner thigh fat is melting, and best of all my jaw, neckline and cheeks are tightening. How could this approach be the best anti-aging remedy in the world!
I hope this inspires others — because I’m not weighing, I have to look for other signs that this approach is working. Who knows, maybe my weight loss hasn’t been that great but really, who cares as long as other wonderful changes are taking place.
Here’s to a stellar June!
3 Jun 20
So pleased to read your May report. I had a few hiccups in May myself so did not get going however I have started June in much better form and went back to read your posts as I find them so inspiring.
Am doing ok so far with small loss of 1 pound but big loss for me mentally.
I find that reading of someone’s journey is so helpful and much more helpful for me than daily chats which some threads become. I wish more people would post successful journeys to inspire people like me so Very Many thanks for yours. Hope you don’t mind me popping in on your thread.
Keep up your amazing work and post if you have the time
8 Jun 20
I love the company! The reason I began this journal was to pay back all the wonderful folks who posted their successful journeys. It helps so much!
My DH noticing my success, has joined me on my fast days. His goal is to lose the 5 kgs he gained on my Covid-Cakes! After his first fast day, he lost almost two pounds. No fair! I’m so glad I’m not weighing, I know I would be discouraged by his rapid success.
But, I am a happy turtle!
Let me know how you’re progressing in June.
12 Jun 20
Thank for your interest and encouragement. Here is my update with a little background so far.
I started in earnest on June 1st. I knew it was going to be tough but felt after reading your journey I had to give it another try.
I have several things against me.
I contracted poly myalgia rheumatica last summer the treatment for which is steroids. They are marvellous at getting rid of the pain and feeling ill but as with all drugs they have side effects the worst of which in my opinion is weight gain and I have put on a stone (14 pounds).
I am also in lockdown in the UK which means I am in the over 70 age bracket.
The leisure centre where I go for Aqua classes plus other activities has been shut since the start of the Covid 19 outbreak.
I decided that in view of the above and having read Michael’s 800 book that I would have to try the short sharp shock of 800 calories each day but I have allowed myself a slight relaxation at the weekend.
To date I have lost 3 pounds which is big bucks for me and I am very pleased about it. Whooo. Movement at last. I knew because of the meds and age that I would not be making the dramatic losses mentioned in the book but I am just so pleased that I am losing at all.
I have been walking each day as soon as we were allowed outside and this with some Jo Wicks Seniors workout is my exercise. I walk between 2 x 4 miles mainly through the fields close by.
Will carry on this way for the next week or so and then maybe try 3 x 800 each week. I have to be careful not to slide as the fat dragon is just waiting to escape his chains and I accept I may have to stay on 800 each day for some time.
I have read that even when I have stopped taking the steroids, I am on a very slowly reducing dose, it usually takes 6 to 12 months to lose the weight. I don’t propose to be part of that statistic.
I have never been very overweight, my heaviest has been 11.10. I am now 11.5 and intend to get back down to 10.7 at least. I am 5’5 in height.
Will give you an end of June report and let you know how I am getting on.
What about you? I know you had fantastic success. Are you where you want to be and are you still fasting periodically? Would love to hear your news if you have the time.
21 Jun 20
I’m so glad my story could inspire you!
Wine-Free Days #75
Well, we’re more than half way through June and my report card for the month is going to be stellar. FD’s have been a breeze (did I just write that?) and I’m sticking to my workout plan.
A friend who saw me for the first time since early in the year wanted to know my “secret”. She also commented that my face looked slimmer and “she hasn’t seen me looking this good for years.”
Again, I want to stress that I am not counting calories on NFDs but I am paying close attention to eating healthy foods, as well as treats like homemade cakes that I have normally avoided. I have never eaten so well, (and lost weight) without guilt in my entire adult life.
My feeling is that many people on the forums put too much extra stress by turning this into a 24/7 diet, in fact, missing the point.
It sounds like you’re doing great despite your health challenges. And although I love to exercise, I don’t do it for weight loss but for general health. I exercised all during the years when I was gaining weight and it did very little for keeping the pounds away.
I am committed to 5:2 4EVER!
Let’s touch base at the end of the month!
1 Jul 20
June Report Card
Fast Days: NINE
Bike Rides (30 min): TEN
Push-ups: THREE HUNDRED AND SIXTEEN (these are women’s pushups done slowly with purpose)
No Wine Days: TWENTY-NINE (I had a marvellous glass of champagne on Father’s Day)
June turned out to be a stellar month with 9 Fast Days (following a Monday/Thursday pattern) with micro-doses of good exercise most days. Wow, that’s a lot of pushups but done in 3×8 sets after either runs or cycling sessions = lots over the month.
My weight loss has inspired a few more people in my circle with new fasting friends as the bonus.
Fast Days: 9
Bike Rides: 12
I’m so glad I don’t weight myself, I’m not sure if I lost any more this month but my husband thinks I can go into maintenance. I don’t think I’m quite there…but I’m loving the journey.
7 Jul 20
Hi Pernetty just a quick catch up.
Have been unwell for last week of June and first week of July. Feeling better now though.
Have lost another 1.25 pounds, not a lot but still going in the right direction.
My plan is to lose 4 lbs in July.
I am so impressed with your achievements. You are certainly a very energetic lady. Keep it up, you never know what’s around the corner.
Until the leisure centre opens I content myself with a walk each day, was walking for an hour each time but that had to stop due to health issues but have started with short walks and building up.
Will check in with you later in the month to see how you are doing.
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