Springing Up – April 2021 Challenge

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Springing Up – April 2021 Challenge

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  • Welcome to Springing up – the April 2021 Monthly Challenge! I’m delighted to be hosting this month. It’s a friendly space to share support and encouragement on the journey to healthier lives.

    The first monthly challenge was started by @coda in May 2016 – so this month takes us to the full 5 years! It’s helped so many of us with amazing support on our 5:2 journey. Here’s how it works:

    1. Brief introduction – helps us to get to know each other. Please use your very first post of the month to introduce yourself – perhaps say something about your beginning, journey so far, what you’re aiming for or how you are benefiting from this Way of Life (WOL). You might like to include your starting weight, or other measurements (waist, hip, bust etc) you’ll be tracking this month and your goal(s) for March.

    2. Spreadsheet – This month’s spreadsheet will appear below. It’s in alphabetical order by username. You can record & track your progress – add monthly targets, mark your fast days (FD) or daily weights, as well as keeping track of how others are doing. It can help with perspective, accountability or planning. Any problems with the spreadsheet please ask – there’s always someone happy to help out.

    3. Format – Start each day’s post with the date, where you are, and if you’re on a fast day (FD), non-fast day (NFD) or controlled day (CD). We live all over the world and in different time zones so It’s helpful to know which day we’re talking about, who else is fasting etc. For example, I’m in the UK and don’t fast on Sundays, so on Sunday 1 March I’ll begin my post Day 1 UK NFD

    4. Frequency – Some people post daily, others check in every few days. Some are brief, others are long & chatty. There can be 40 people around the world taking part in a challenge so we mostly post once a day. If you‘re posting for a second time that day, please head your post eg Day 1 second post.

    5. Content – Comments or questions, complaints or celebration – anything you’d like to share with the forum. Recipes, tips, tricks ideas are welcome too. Remember – we all have good days and bad days, days we fall off the wagon or days when we are hanging on by our fingernails. Whatever it is, you are not alone!

    6. Community – This is a worldwide forum is there’s almost always someone online. We all do our best to offer advice, support or solidarity.

    7. Pocket lists – Over the course of these monthly challenges, small groups have added their own mini-challenges. A ‘pocket list’ is a group who’ve set themeselves a target and are supporting each other through it, mostly by knowing we’re not alone. Anyone can join one a pocket list or start a pocket list for a FD– it’s entirely optional and flexible.

    8. 5:2 basics – answers to many FAQs plus top tips:
    https://thefastdiet.co.uk/forums/topic/the-basics-for-newbies-your-questions-answered/ 🙂

    As host of Springing Up – April 2021 Challenge I’ll aim to read the posts & respond each day. Please forgive me if I miss something. Here’s to a helpful and hopeful month together…

    “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”


    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

    I’m in!

    I’m in for Springing Up April!

    I am a 46 y/o male in northeast Georgia in the US, and have lost 55 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 70 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 lose about three or four pounds, placing me at right about 220 lbs by the start of May. Good luck to everyone!

    @michelinme – thank you for hosting once more – loving the positive vibes coming from your “Springing Up – April 2021 Challenge” tittle – I’m definitely in! See below the link for the spreadsheet for anyone who wants to use it – hopefully I have given everyone access to edit as the wish


    @stitchincarol lovely to have you here – your posts are a highlight for me
    @northgeorgia what an epic journey you have had already! Here’s to the next phase
    @at thank you so much for the spreadsheet & your encouragement 🙂

    Hi. Please count me in for April. My birthday month, so I’m looking forward to pizza and Turkish food. Not together obviously. That would be silly. Happy April everybody.

    Hi @michelinme! Thanks for hosting the April challenge and thanks @at for making the spreadsheet again. I’d like to join please.

    Hello all. Not sure what happened, but I seemed to have disappeared for far too long. all is well. Trying to stay in maintenance, but can feel myself slipping, Somehow the 6:1 is so much harder for me than 5:2 – who knows. But mostly am happy to rejoin, see how you all are, read your posts, and cheer everyone on.
    Happy spring!!

    I’am in

    53 year old female

    Hi, I’m in. Took a long hibernation from mindful eating – blame it on the global pandemic. I’ve been doing 16:8 the few months which works well for me with my teaching/work schedule, but put a creeping 7 pounds of emotional eating on, which I intend to get rid of!! So will do 2 weeks of ADF, followed by 5:2 until I hit my goal weight. I have autoimmune issues so sugar and white flour don’t serve me well.

    I like the support and accountability here. I love healthy food – my problem is emotional/mindless eating so am looking forward to getting back into yoga and exercise and drinking less wine to reset.

    Thank you for welcoming me in.

    USA – Reno, NV
    45 year old F

    Hello, Here’s my very first post – just signed up this morning. I’d like to join into the challenge, as I need all the help I can get. 🙂

    I am a life-long dieter of every kind. More or less you name it, I’ve tried it. Between 2012-2014 I lost just over 110 pounds, which actually made me too thin (I know there’s not supposed to be any such thing, but apparently there is when everyone starts asking you if you’re ill, with a pitying look on their face). I rebounded by about 20 lbs to a total of a very comfortable 90 lost (my weight at that time was about 165), and I maintained that more or less right on the money until about 2 1/2, 3 years ago when I started having some medical problems that caused rapid weight gain no matter what I ate or how much I exercised. The medical problems have been for the most part resolved, but the extra 20 pounds I put back on due to the problems are not.

    My husband and I have been doing keto since January, and of course he’s lost about 17 pounds while I lost about 3. We were doing 16:8 IF for about a month or so along with the keto, but I wasn’t terribly happy with it, so I decided to give the 5:2 thing a go. We are doing a test fast day (500/600) today, actually, trying out some foods/quantities to see how we feel and what we might want to tweak. Our goal’s to really start with the 2 days a week with the 1st of April.

    On the non-dieting front, I am a nerd who loves Game of Thrones, Star Wars, and Rescue Me. Lifelong New Kids on the Block fan who also loves 80s/90s country music and 90s alternative/grunge. We have two adorable pugs named Dudley and Ripley. I am naming my Hunger Dragon Viserion after GoT’s undead scary dragon. 🙂

    Welcome to the April challenge
    @emma-taylor – looking forward to celebrating your birthday
    @snowflake56 always a pleasure
    @nellen – good to have you back, practicing maintenance and sharing your learning
    @nuno – glad to be sharing your amazing journey
    @erikaa67 we all know about emotional eating!
    @calamityjamie welcome! Wonderful that you and your husband are working together. This is s great place to come for friendly support, encouragement and shared learning.

    We’ll have lots more people joining & introducing themselves over the next few days once the March challenge is completed. We are a diverse and international group, with 5:2 experience ranging from years to weeks.

    You might want to think about setting some specific goals for April. These might be around eg eating pattern, weight loss, activity level, fitting into a particular item of clothing or picking up a new practice. Many of us find that posting about our plans adds another layer of accountability and makes them a little easiser to stick to!

    Here’s to a great April challenge, Springing up into a healthier way of life.

    Hi Michelinme, can I join the challenge for April please.

    Count me in @michelinme ☺️

    Count me in too please.

    I’m a 60 year old female and I live on the east coast of Canada. This time last year I weighed 30 pounds (13.6 kilos) more than I do today. Most of my loss came from joining the online FD800 programme. I have about 6-9 pounds until I reach my goal. This month I hope to lose 4 pounds. I’ve not yet decided on my goal weight but no doubt it will be a range, between 125-129 (56.8-58.6). This forum has been an inspirational lifeline and great fun.

    Thank you @michelinme for hosting. Looking forward to April.


    Thanks, Michelinme, for hosting April. Count me in!

    Welcome to the April challenge
    @wacm make yourself right at home
    @daffodil2010 @dvw @ccco looking forward to sharing another challenge with you old friends

    We begin tomorrow – if you’d like to, do introduce yourself and perhaps say something about your goals for the month 🙂

    Hi @michelinme! Please, count me in for the Springing Up – April Challenge!

    Thank you, again, for volunteering to host us.
    I’ve been wondering about your cabbage/carrot/apple/onion slaw, and what proportions you use of those ingredients, and whether any dressing? I would love if you would share your recipe, please? I’m lately into cabbages of all colors, and trying some new recipes to use them.

    Thanks so much, and see you tomorrow!

    I am happily joining the next challenge, @michelinme — and thanks for hosting!

    I am happily joining the next challenge, @michelinme — and thanks for hosting!

    Day 1, NFD, Aus

    Thanks @michelinme for hosting! (and @at for the spreadsheet although I don’t use it.)

    We’re sliding into winter Down Under so I am going to interpret this month’s title as springing back into the 5:2 way of life. I have been far too complacent and my weight is slowly creeping up. I’ve been in denial and not looked at my scales all year – literally – but my clothes are not fitting as well as they did in December and that’s telling.

    Hello @erikaa67 – I’m with you this month. I also need to get away from emotional and mindless eating and drinking less wine.

    Welcome to this friendly and supportive forum @calamityjamie! My OH also loses weight quickly on keto – it’s so unfair! But 5:2 works for me.

    You’re right @michelinme. A plan for April. We have family visiting so that week will not comply with the plan, but apart from that I WILL do 5:2 which means I WILL do two FDs per week!!!!

    About me? I think I’ve been doing 5:2 since 2017 but I have not truly committed to make this a WOL. Over that time I’ve really only lost about 10 kilos and hovered around the same weight for the last few years. Ideally, I’d like to drop another 15 kg. If I put my mind to it I could do this by the end of the year. The problem is I overdo it on the weekends and love my red wine and martinis!!

    I’m married, with two dogs who get me moving in the morning.

    Happy Easter everyone and have a great long weekend.

    Day 1 country West Australia NFD
    Welcome to all the oldies and newbies – we are in good company on this thread.😁
    Thank you @penz for guiding us through March and @michelinme for taking over the reins in April.
    A 60+ health professional who was slightly overweight in 2016 started this WOL in November 2016. Lost 7kgs and got down to 70kgs.😇
    Really liked the health benefits along with the weight loss.
    THEN landed on the dreaded plateau. Stayed there for so long I decorated the damn plateau and made it very homely.🥂☕️👗👜
    Dabbled with 5:2 and pretended I was doing it when I actually wasn’t. 😞
    How many weeks/months can you not have a FD and still think you are doing 5:2 ??🤔
    Gained weight but kept kidding myself it was ‘ only a few kilos which I know I can get rid of.’……NOT !
    THEN fell off the wagon completely and ate enough for a few small countries .🍕🍟🥐🍔🍫🥧🎂
    Watched as the scales went up…. and up… and UP.😲
    When they got to 89.4 kgs ( not a typo!) decided I had better do something.😱
    Started 5:2 again half heartedly end 2020.
    Have been doing 5:2 as a WOL properly for the past 2 months and am now 84.8 kgs so pretty happy with that.😄
    Now very motivated to get back to 70 kgs by end of 2021.
    Things that really help – this supportive community and accountability of posting daily and reading others journeys.
    This is a truly international group from all over the place. Lots and lots of support and encouragement to help us stay on the wagon or to give us a lift up when we fall off.
    I have a good feeling about April.
    Onward and downward.🙂

    Day 1, New Zealand, FD
    Hello everyone, I’m a 58 year old female from the South Island of New Zealand. Married with 4 children, of which only the youngest is still at home. I work shift work which sometimes makes fasting a bit difficult, but I CAN DO IT. I have been told that I have high blood pressure and that losing some weight is one way of helping to get it down, I don’t want to have to go on medication at this stage. Thank you @michelinme for hosting this month.

    Day 1, AUS, FD800

    52 year old woman here, currently trying to get rid of the pandemic (and presumably perimenopausal) pounds) pounds.

    This is my 4th challenge, and I’ve lost 5k since the start of the year (hurrah!), but still have 3k to go. Hoping to get rid of at least half that this month.

    I lost 1k at the start of last month, but now seem to be plateauing. But I noticed my measurements have dropped a lot during the plateau, so that still seems positive.

    Ready to tackle this month with you all.

    Day 0 – USA/GA – FD

    Sorry, thought I’d post for tomorrow instead of doing a second post, since the March challenge is closing. I went through my old “in waiting” clothes, not really thinking anything would fit. There were a few pieces that felt slightly snug, but I have to remind myself that if it’s not uncomfortable like squishing sausage into a tube, it might just be I’ve forgotten what well-fitting clothes feel like. So there are maybe six pieces like that.

    I am washing 17 pieces of clothing that now seem to fit OK, including a drift into a lower pant size. Looking forward to this month!

    Day 1, Emden Germany, NFD

    Hi everyone!

    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 60.9 kg/134.3 lbs, my goal is 60 kg/132.3 lbs, preferably a bit under.

    @wacm and @erikaa67 Welcome back, good to have you here again!

    @calamityjamie Welcome! It’s good you have company at home, it makes fasting a lot easier.

    @basyjames thanks for joining me yesterday. I’m going to try to follow your strategy of fasting every other day until I reach my goal.

    Have a nice day everyone!

    Day 1 – Ireland 🇮🇪 – NFD

    Quick post as I WFH and then have to head into town to see my Doc re these mysterious abdominal cramps.

    It’s also my mothers 29th Anniversary today, and so it’s always a somber one for me. At 53 I am just one year younger than she was, hence the huge effort and will to get fit, get healthy, get well, live long and happy.

    Looking forward to April where this 6 month plateau will be dust, yeah !!!!🙏

    Day 1 Wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 FD

    I’m a 62 year old woman living in Wales with DH and our gorgeous elderly cat. I discovered 5:2 and this forum in summer 2017 and lost 30 pounds and reached goal in summer 2018. Maintenance went well until late 2020 when pandemic anxiety hit me hard and stress eating and too much🍷led to a gain of 10 pounds. For the past few months I have struggled to get back to goal weight losing and finding the same few pounds repeatedly! March was a good month and I feel mentally rebooted and in a good place to move forward and tackle those stubborn excess pounds. Being in the company of this forum helps to keep me focused.

    @michelinme thanks for hosting

    Wishing everyone success 🙂

    Day 1 UK FD

    Morning all I’m 59 live on the south coast of England with my hubby and currently both our sons 23 & 26 are with us, which is great but has its challenges

    I’m one of those people that say they “struggle with their weight” I joined these challenges back in 2016 and reached a happy weight and thought I’d cracked the code – stayed steady for a few years then wham a few too many holidays celebrations etc saw me gain the 20lbs back , nearly back to my goal although it’s been harder and slower to shift this time, I’m listening to my body more and feel fitter and healthier than I have in a long time Looking forward to our April journey – thanks @michelinme for guiding us

    Day 1 – Lake District UK – FD

    Good morning everyone

    Thanks to @mitchelinme 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 now lost 62 pounds / 29.4 kg BMI down from 38 in July 2019 to 29.1

    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, but that was last months challenge plan and I lost 2 lbs, 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!

    Take care all

    Pocket list Day 1

    Day 1 – Canada – NFD

    Good morning! The start of a new month is always exciting. Last month I managed to lose 2.8 lbs so feeling pretty good about that. If I achieve my 4 pound loss this month then I’ll be within spitting distance to my goal.

    @lilymartin – you crack me up, ha ha ha.

    Great to be here with you all. Best of luck to everyone.

    Day 1 – Lisbon, Portugal WFD/WFH

    Hello everyone!!!

    Thank’s for your support messages 🙂

    This month I will continue my plan. Two periods of fasting for a minimum of 36 hours and on normal days eat only twice.
    What is having a big impact on my health is the withdrawal of carbohydrates and sugar.

    I’m getting younger and younger!!!!!!

    Hugs to all and good month!


    Day 1 – USA/GA – NFD

    Today, I met my final goal of 154 lbs. APRIL FOOLS! LOL, no no, if I do meet that goal, it’s still into the distant future hehe

    I decided not to do ZBC today. It’ll be a double banana day: an egg and banana for breakfast, a lunch, then a banana for the mid-afternoon break. Yeah, a banana has lots of calories, but so much less than a small bag of chips and some chocolates, plus it keeps me satisfied until I get home.

    Weigh-in was a new record this morning: 223 lbs. April is promising! I set my goal very conservatively as the same as my March goal: 221, but with a start of 223, I might finally breach that.

    DAY 1, UK, ZBC + CD

    @michelinme – thank you so much for hosting. I really hope that your Long Covid is better now.

    @calamityjamie – welcome and what a great handle!

    Well I am very excited as this morning I managed to happily get into a pair of Going Out trousers, which I haven’t fitted into for several months! Hooray…….. so all of these ZBCs + CDs are paying off, even if I haven’t done a huge amount of proper fasting.

    I shall definitely be in need of a Fast Day after Easter, haha !

    Day 1 – UK – TDEE

    My FDs at the end of the last challenge and the start of this one sadly did not materialise but weight this morning was 56.8kg so happy with that 😊

    Did an aerobic class via zoom this morning then got organised for the last lunch service at our Parish Centre – slightly sad to end volunteering for this but seeing it as a good sign that we are slowly but surely heading back to “normal”

    Part of me is dreading the huge influx of visitors we are expecting in the Lake District but the local businesses will be glad of the income – I just hope that folks take care and stay safe and do not leave rubbish everywhere as sadly we saw in between lockdowns and this past week since day visitors have been allowed to travel…..

    Lovely to welcome @calamityjamie (new to the challenges) and some oldies back to our monthly challenge @wacm (from October 2019?) @erikaa67 (from June last year) @missybear – we missed you in March

    @michelinme – plan for April is to stay within my maintenance range. After reviewing how I feel and look I have decided that trying to keep my weight below 55kg is perhaps not the best option for me. My exercise levels have gone up over the past year, I also want to keep the wrinkles at bay and the new scales have opened my eyes that I’m in the middle of the healthy range of all the recorded data so perhaps a new maintenance range of 55-57kg is more appropriate?? After all that is where I seem to have settled after dropping my weight to as low as 53kg and yo-yoing before settling around 56kg!

    I had added everyone who has joined the challenge to the spreadsheet – all names in black, names in red are those from last month’s challenge and I will change to black as they join (hope that makes sense??) anyway here is the link if you want to use the spreadsheet

    For this Springing Up April challenge I’m aiming to remain in maintenance and do
    *FD500 x 2
    *TDEE x 3
    *Relax and enjoy some 🍷🥂on my 2 x NFD
    *Drinking at least 2L water daily
    *Continuing with my weekly exercise regime of Yoga x 3 – HIP x 1 – Aerobics x 1 – Broga x 2 and going for hikes whenever the weather permits (at least 3 times a week)

    For those new to the challenges a brief introduction:-
    I am a 62y.o. female living with my DH, we have a married daughter who has 4 fur babies – 3 black cats Purrlock, Layla and Toby 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 challenges in November 2016 as I had plateaued for around 3 months and managed to reach maintenance in early December 2016 with the help of these challenges and have remained in maintenance range and a BMI of just around 20 since then – Total weight loss = 22kg/3st 7lbs. Height = 165cm

    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 1 USA (Utah, visiting) ZBC, CD

    It’s wonderful to be back into this forum scene. A bit about me: Home is Illinois but visiting Utah for a while. I began 5:2 in mid-March 2016 so just celebrated a 5 year anniversary. I was able to join the May 2016 challenge with @coda and have not missed one since then. Is that the joy of being retired? Likely. I am 72 (almost 73) who found myself pushing 200 pounds in 2016. I found out about IF from a WordsWithFriends pal from Australia who had success with it. Bought the book before I began to read the research on this way to lose. Over the rest of 2016 I lost over 30 pounds. I’ve pretty much maintained 160 pounds since early 2017. But MAINTENANCE is TOUGH! Generally I have been on 6:1 with other days at 16:8. Often I do ZBC.

    I am a retired music teacher, married with 4 grown kids, 5 granddaughters. I still teach some piano lessons, do church music, and hopefully will be back to our townspeople choir once this Covid is under control.

    It will be good to get to know you newbies as we make it through April.

    Onward and downward.

    Day 1 – Rural Nebraska, USA – FD500

    @erikaa67 and @calamityjamie and @wacm Welcome! You will find a terrific group of people on this forum who can be of great help and encouragement and I hope you stick around and post and chatter with us daily!

    I had only a limited number of minutes this morning, and just got a phone call that ate them all up, so I’ll have to post my introduction and chatter later.

    USA. Day 1. FD800

    Here we go again into another month and another goal! I hope to lose 4 lbs. this month…maybe without the rollercoaster!!

    Pocket list Day 1
    @ccco. FD800

    @ccco. (Indefinitely)

    Have a great first day of the month, everyone! 🌹

    Day 1 North Canton OH NFD

    I am springing up and springing in. Just a quick hi to say count me in @michelinme and thank you for hosting.

    Work calls but I will try to share my story in a little bit.

    Hang in there guys, your goals are within reach

    Day 1 USA/DC NFD
    Happy to be here. Somehow I feel as though I mostly missed last month.
    A little about me – I am 65, live in Washington DC, but am a New Englander at heart. I first was introduced to 5:2 3 years ago by a friend. It is and has been the only program that works for me (but pretty much only when I am on board :))) I have fluctuated between 130-142 lbs on and off for years. 5:2 not only brings me to the weight I want to be, but the weight that feels the most healthy and right for me. I always feel better when I am on the program – something about the fast days, whether 1 or 2 or 3 a week – I feel so much better, clearer, more energetic and awake. My real struggle is the place I am right now – in maintenance. It is just all too easy (albeit not the best feeling) to slowly but surely end up eating my old way of eating which for me is grazing. Whether I actually do a full 500 cal. day of fasting or just turn off the food by 7:30 at night – that does the trick. I am not a breakfast person but once I get started I just merrily eat my way, little by little, throughout the day (and night) UNLESS I am on some type of IF program.
    So that’s my story.
    thank you for hosting and thank you all for being there and keeping me focused.

    Second Post

    @lilymartin I didn’t know you knew me so well, that you could write my own story!!!! 😜 I’m tickled for you that you’ve found the mojo to really stick to 5:2 and make some downward progress!

    @northgeorgia Well done on fitting into smaller clothes, and that 223 this morning must have been a huge thrill!

    So lovely to read chatter from the rest of you!

    I’m a 62yo woman, 5’4″ and currently at 145. Starting in my 30s, I stayed at 132 for quite a few years, then lots of life changes starting in 2003 brought on 34 pounds, although I lost almost all of them in 2015 using 5:2…only to gain back all of them. Starting 2/26/20, I lost fifteen pounds, then hovered there for months (and months and months and months…well, it felt like it, anyway!). Finally, in late February, I started meeting with a hypnotherapist via Zoom and that has–so far!–pushed me into consistently following the behavior I outlined for her, and has also eliminated those EFS days and other lapses in behavior, with the result that I’ve lost five pounds this month. My goal is at least 132, but possibly 125; I’ll know when I get to 132 if I want to keep going.

    My action plan is 4:3 until I reach goal weight, with 10K steps as often as I can pull it off, both because that’s a healthy number and also so that I burn at least 1800 calories per day. As a church musician and office secretary, this is a crazy-busy season for me, so steps are taking a back-seat to all the other things I need to accomplish, but next week is coming. Plus, gardening can start happening in another couple of weeks, and that will really help burn off calories.

    Good luck to everyone on finding the discipline you need to reach your goals!

    Day 1 UK NFD

    Hello and welcome to Springing up – April challenge!

    It’s been a hectic day for me! I started posting earlier,somewhere between finishing baking hot cross buns, trip to hospital for echocardiogram, friend visiting with gourmet vegan cheese delivery and preparing for evening church service. I left the draft text to finish off after the service – but in the middle of the service my laptop died. Completely dead, a brick. A mere 2 months after the epic fix/new laptop/everyone’s old spares Saga. And just at the start of the double bank holiday.😭😭😭

    So it looks as though I’ll be a slightly more challenged host than anticipated! I only have my phone – now with multiply-cracked screen after an earlier mishap. Plus my numb thumbs, peripheral neuropathy from covid. Yay.

    Forgive me if I’m not able to respond to many individual posts. Luckily we have many wonderful warm friends here who will pick up questions and cheerlead. We’re all in this together.

    To introduce myself. I’m f56, 5ft6, living in London UK. I put on weight in 3 stages, through illness stopping smoking and menopause. I began 5:2 with the Dec 2017 challenge weighing 181lb. Over the next year I got down to 145lb with one very long plateau when I lost no weight but went down 2 dress sizes. I fell off the wagon when a friend died suddenly in sept 2019, tho stayed here until falling ill March 20 with Covid, now long Covid. I rejoined in January 2021 weighing 174lb and lost 6lbs, then took a pause with post covid health issues. I’ve had a great March tho lost no weight, a little less puffy and with some great progress in sleep, diet, hydration and gentle exercise.

    My April goals are not to blowout over Easter weekend, to practice adapted yoga 4x/week, get min 9 hours sleep each night, drink 2 lites water/day and continue to follow largely plant based diet. I’m going to practice solid 5:2 or 3:4 each week, 2 meals each day and finish earlier. All of those non-52 goals are what supports me in healthy eating, better relationship with food and more balanced life.

    Today’s hot cross buns were from a kit made by a social enterprise, raising money for projects with homeless people. The dough just needed shaping, second prove, cross adding and baking. Squeezed around my hospital appointment I managed to both under prove and overbake!! They’re wholemeal, spicy and solid. But very popular indeed with visiting friend so must have been all in the mixing!

    Let us know your plans and goals for April. A plan shared is already begun… Here’s to a wonderful challenge Springing up together!

    Day 2, NZ, NFD
    Easter Friday here, chocolate and hot cross buns – AGGHHH. I have resisted so far. Split shift today 5am till 12, then 4pm till 7pm. I have another 5am start tomorrow, so will be a light tea and early to bed.

    Day 2; Emden Germany, FD

    I’m back to weighing out food and calorie counting. I thought my yoghurt with frozen berries and a few nuts had ~250 cals. After weighing everything, it turns out it has ~400 cals. I have it on most days, no wonder I gained weight. I’m eating nuts again, I can’t leave out both sweets and nuts so I decided to have 25 gramm of nuts on my NFDs.

    @michelinme How unfortunate your laptop broke down, can be fixed? I hope your ECG was OK.

    @brightonbelle I’m still wondering, why I lost weight so fast when I started 5:2 and after gaining weight again it’s so much harder to get if off. Does it only work once?

    @nellen Staying in maintenance is not easy. Every time I reach my goal weight, I’m able to stay in maintenance for a while but then gain weight again because I don’t pay much attention to what I eat. It’s so easy to slip back into old habits.

    Pocket list day 2

    Have a nice day everyone!

    Day 2, U.K. NFD

    I forgot yesterday to introduce myself

    I am female, aged 50 and live in the south of the UK

    I am 6 lb off my target weight

    Last year I was pretty ill with Long Covid for six months and put on nearly a stone, maybe more than a stone, I don’t know exactly as my weighing scales broke ha ha ha

    Anyway the point being that I grew out of all my clothes so that was a bit gutting!

    I got back in the saddle for fasting in mid January and since then I have lost 6 lb in weight, with another 6 lb to go.

    Thanks to Covid, I now suffer from hyponatraemia, which is very low salt levels. I’ve always had slightly low salt levels, but it was never a problem until I had Covid.

    This Hyponatremia is a bit of a problem when trying to fast because it means that I need to drink a lot of salt water (3 x teaspoons pink Himalayan salt) over the course of a fast day.
    So I am slightly struggling with all of this at the moment …

    I started fasting in 2013 having read Dr Michael Mosley’s book, But I did not find this forum until a few years later. I absolutely love this forum, the people on it are brilliant!

    Happy April to you all!

    Day 2 – Ireland 🇮🇪 – NFD

    It’s Good Friday, so back in the day it was a ‘black fast’ day with nothing to eat but black tea and dry bread……..it’s still traditional to avoid meat and instead have fish as penance ☺️

    About me, I am 53, live with DH and our cat in a lovely rural village in a county just on the outskirts of the capital, I was slim all my life until in 2002 I stopped smoking. The best health decision I ever made, but slowly weight started creeping on until in 2013 I weighed a whopping 12 stone 7lbs, which is very heavy for a petite 5’2″ female.

    I had been a veteran of WeightWatchers where I was losing a soul destroying half pound a week if lucky, I have tried everything else like the Scarsdale and the Dukan Diet. I was successful with that one, DH also joined me, and we both lost 50lbs each in 2013. But slowly, again, weight crept back up, until 2017 I was 11and a half stone, and found 5:2 on the internet plus this forum. Lost weight quickly to just over 9 stone by the start of 2018.

    And again, slowly, weight started creeping up….I have two stone to lose, but have been at the almost exact same weight to the pound since October 2020. I lost 2lb in March so hoping this is the tide turning.

    I, like a lot of us, now have the super duper scales….and while the measurements for BMI and fat etc are high, all that exercise that I have never stopped doing means that my muscle count is in the green and gives me hope to carry on and get more green in those statistics ☺️

    So I was at my doctor yesterday for these mysterious abdominal cramps, and basically, she just doesn’t know ☹️ They are too high or too low for some things, I don’t have fever, heart rate good, everything else tip-top, BP now managed by tablets…so I questioned whether it is the BP tablets as that is the only difference since last week. Highly unlikely, keep taking them, but a CRP blood test was taken and if she rings me today then I know my inflammatories are high and next steps to be taken. If not, continue on until next appointment next Thursday.

    It’s frustrating and although the cramps are not debilitating and I feel well, they are constant, and mentally I am worried. I am having a “sick day” and going to lie in bed for the morning with a hot water bottle on my abdomen and maybe that will work ?

    Anyhoo, hope everyone is fine, have a great Easter.

    Day 2 – lake District UK – NFD

    Good morning everyone

    Early air frost this morning glad the tender plants were under cover last night, agricultural fleece in the greenhouse is very good stuff indeed! Having said that the suns warm already and the bit of frost has gone.

    Fabulous day yesterday, bimbling around the garden and a walk, the Ospreys have returned from Africa, been seen around the area and at their nearby nesting site. The herons are in full swing, the heronry is very noisy as we walk past. Loads of wildlife and plants springing up.

    My plan for April is to stay within my maintenance range, but that was my plan for March and I lost 2 lb.

    Take care all

    Day 1 – Ireland – NFD
    Day 2 NFD
    Hi all and thank you @michelinme for hosting is this month 💕
    My name is a play on words as I am a french speaker so “J’ai faim” means “I’m hungry” but also stands for Just Another Intermittent Fast And I’ll Maintain… I’m bobbing in and out of maintenance at the moment with the previous goal I had set but might review that this month and revise downwards.
    I’m very active, with lots of muscle but carry weight in my hips and tummy.. unfortunately weight comes off my face first…

    I love being outdoors even in our lovely Irish weather and cycle, walk, do Joe Wicks and some yoga at the moment but not enough… must do more 🧘‍♀️
    I’m pretty much staying away from alcohol 🚫 so “on the dry” and have reduced added sugars ✅ as much as I can 😂 I have two auto immune conditions and the above definitely cause flare ups… I’m falling off the sugar wagon more in Covid than ever before 🙄
    But….. life is for living and like others I tend to have one blowout (EFS) day a week.

    Go gently this month – we all have so much on our minds right now – be gentle with yourself 😗
    I’ll be heading home to look after my lovely mum this weekend so will eat well and enjoy the long weekend 🐣

    Onward and downward ⬇️
    We rise by lifting others 💕

    @daffodil2010 – just a thought before I jump in my car … I’ve been reading about histamine intolerance on menopause sites and it struck me that this could be the problem? I don’t know enough or even much about it TBH but given where you are in terms of age and the fact that you had a reaction recently (to avocado ??? Or am I mixing you up with someone else?) it just may be that…
    hope you feel better soon!

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