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  • I am really struggling with this. I lost 2lbs the first week and was so thrilled. Next week I gained a lb, third week lost 1lb and for the last two weeks have stayed the same.
    It is disappointing. Has anybody else experienced this? I really don’t want to give up.

    Don’t give up, just look at what you are eating on your normal days. If you haven’t got a lot of weight to lose, loss will be slower than someone who has lots of weight to lose. On average, it is expected that people will lose around 11b a week on 5:2 but it will vary. 🙂

    “Has anybody else experienced this? ”

    Yes, I’ve had minor changes in weight & major changes in attitude & energy levels.

    Are there some other areas that you have experienced a positive change?

    I think aniann meant 1 lb a week, not 11! Otherwise I’m definitely doing something wrong… 🙂

    I think you have to look carefully at what you are eating on your none fast days. It’s not as easy as just eating what you want on those days. You want to become a healthy eater. I tend to eat very healthy on the days that follow my fast with a bit of a build up as I get closer to my fast days. The day before I fast I remind myself that I will be fasting tomorrow so I can’t snack unnecessarily. I kind of practice for the coming fast day. Remind yourself how good you were on your fast day and try to eat more healthy. You know you can eat less when really restricted so you can eat healthy portions when unrestricted.

    “Remind yourself how good you were on your fast day and try to eat more healthy. You know you can eat less when really restricted so you can eat healthy portions when unrestricted.”

    These are great thoughts to live by.


    Give it time. I am on my 6th month. I chart my progress by calculating my average loss each month. Started on April 4. Lost 4.54 pounds in April. 1.86 pounds in May. 1.48 pounds in June. 2.91 pounds in July. 0.77 pounds in August. So far in September I have an average loss of 1.64 pounds and the month is only half over.

    As you can see the progress is erratic and August was a tough month, but I still lost weight, and have lost weight each and every month. When I started I was 207. I’m down to 190. My goal is 165 and it will probably take me till the end of next year to reach it.

    I am retired and that makes it a little easier to make the two fast days each week. I think I have only missed one fast day since I started. Incidentally, I sometimes “cheat” a little when I am too hungry. And so have a cheese stick or a small bag of peanuts or something else low calorie, which means that I may come in at 800 or so instead of 600. But I’m still losing weight. It works!

    Thank you everyone who has posted for your very positive and encouraging comments and useful advice. You give me real hope and I will persevere. Incidentally have just done a weigh in and lost half a pound this week so feeling pretty good.

    I do not get it.

    Why are we being careful with what we eat on non fast days, when we are told to eat anything we want and as much as we can handle without worry, guilt or calorie counting ( which has now popped out of the wood work).
    Wasn’t there testing completed where people were eating over 110% of the daily calorie intake on the non fast days without gaining extra weight??


    I think the bottom line is that if you have weight to lose you can’t eat ‘absolutely everything’ you want on non fast days.
    I say this after a lot of experimentation , otherwise called pushing my luck by really gorging in between fasts.
    I had been on Slimmer’s World for years ( which became so kill joyish) and didn’t have a lot to lose. I got rid of the rest of the weight really quickly on 5:2 but was really only totally pigging out badly once a week and eating ‘normally’ on the other days. Normally though was much less restricted than living on Slimmer’s world. Having got to the desired weight ( which was a number I didn’t think I would ever see again at 57 years old) I was pretty good for a while, but then started eating crazily on more and more days.
    I noticed that I would go up a few pounds and then down again. So in other words, I was only able to keep to the weight I was, and would have been unable to actually lose any more behaving like this.
    Maybe this is what is happening to some people: It is misleading to be told ‘eat what you want’, but I still found I could eat in a much less restricted way on non fast days than on a conventional diet. I had butter on toast ( which I hadn’t for decades) and proper meals, and still lost weight. Plus my one day a week of chocolate and pudding heaven. You can push it more once you have got to your personal target and still stay there. Hope this helps. I am now 2 years in and have kept the weight off despite my bad behaviour! I am on this for life. Hope this helps.

    Hi swaven, I think the ‘eat as much as you can handle’ line has probably come from some magazine article or other that’s gone a bit over the top about fasting.

    Everyone treats the diet in different ways. I’m trying to lose a couple of stone in weight so it doesn’t feel right to me to over eat on my non fast days. As a result, I kind of calorie count on those days, but certainly not to a level where it feels restrictive – it’s more like ‘oh this tasty muffin is probably around 500 calories so it’s probably a good idea not to have cheesy mash with my big meal later’.

    Other people though will take the approach of wanting to know exactly what they’re eating and that works for them. But just because they do it doesn’t mean you have to.

    So now I’m probably eating just over 500 on my fast days and on non fast probably anywhere between 1800 and 2300 on my non fast days (though that is totally a guess). The weight is slowly and steadily coming off. Once I reach target weight I’ll probably do 6 1 and be even more lax about counting calories.

    As for issues with struggling, I tried the fast diet initially last year and only managed 2 weeks before I just stopped doing it. The only thing I can think is that I just wasn’t heavy enough to be motivated. This time it’s different. If I could market the ‘click’ in my head that puts me into the right pattern of thinking in my approach to dieting I’d be a multi billionnaire. Sometimes it just happens and sometimes it doesn’t.

    One thing I do know is that results breed results, so if you can manage to stick to it for, say, 4 weeks and start to feel looser clothes it makes it an awful lot easier to stick to it for another 4.

    hi everyone, this is my first post and only my second week on this diet. i’m actually trying adf to get results quickly. I’m not having a problem on the fast days, just veggies and tuna and chicken. love my feast days tho. i like to work out a lot but i don’t on my fast days as i have low energy and a bit of a headache. i like to eat and drink, which is why I’m doing this. would love to hear from other newbies! have a great day everyone, and remember this is not only for weight loss, but for lower igf1 which is so important 🙂

    Hi Suzy:

    Here are some tips for those just starting:

    You won’t get quick results if you eat a lot on your non diet days. The basic rule is eat to your TDEE or less on non diet days.

    Good Luck!

    Hi Struggling

    Its now day 2 of my fast on the first week of starting the diet. I will update each week even if I only lose 1 lb. I want it to be that way anyway as its suppose to be a way of life. Thats what I want a way of life that helps me get slim but does not adversely affect my quality of life. I look like a roly poly with a huge stomach. At present I weigh 12 stone 5 lb and have drank practically every night for the last year. To go along with the 5:2 I am also planning to cut drinking down to three nights a week. Lets all check my progress together. I would feel embaressed sharing my now photo as I look six months pregnant but will if I get down to my ideal weight by June 2015 which I want to be 10 stone 7 lb.

    Hi Sona,
    As a veteran of this way of life, my top tips are to weigh once a week on the same day and on that day measure and record bust/waist/hips/thighs/calves and upper arms, and try on your clothes. Some times the scales are sluggish or seem to be broken, but the body is shrinking. Sometimes it shrinks were the tape goes and sometimes it shrinks and the only indicator is how the clothes hang. I couldn’t figure out why my dresses were longer, until I realized that the fat was sliding off my back, along with the fat between my neck and the top of my cleavage. I didn’t look matronly anymore either!
    Don’t get hung up on a lb loss, some weeks it will happen and some it won’t, BUT you will be shrinking somewhere, so just keep going. We all get hung up on what the scales say, which is bonkers as the aim is a waist half our height, not some magic number on the scales when our lives will be perfect.
    Check out the calories in what you are drinking, you may well be surprised at how much you are consuming. I was horrified how many calories were in an Almond Croissant, so that is a once a week treat now.
    You can have what you like, just not how much you want, if you want to lose weight.The choices are yours and will dictate how long it takes to reach your goal.Good Luck!

    Hi Sona and welcome:

    ‘I will update each week even if I only lose 1 lb.’

    The average weight loss for women on 5:2 over time is slightly less than one pound a week. Your comment reflects a misunderstanding of how weight loss works and the results you can reasonably expect from 5:2.

    Many people show up on this and other sites and report large initial weight losses. They extol the virtues of 5:2 and other newbies reading their posts come to think those large weight losses are normal and to be expected. However, if you stick around long enough, most of those posters disappear after a month or two. What happens is their weight losses slow dramatically or come to a screeching halt and they give up on 5:2.

    However, some come to understand the potential power of fasting on weight loss and start to modify their diets to allow them to continue fairly rapid weight loss. Many of these people report having 3 or 4 diet days a week while at the same time reducing their calorie intake on non diet days to levels well below their TDEEs. Some on this site report ongoing diets of less than 1000 calories a day. Their weight loss is substantial, but not representative of what can be achieved by a less determined person.

    Their is nothing wrong with losing a lot of weight fast over time, but those that do are not representative of the universe of dieters using intermittent fasting as a way to weight loss. My observation is that many that come to 5:2 leave it because they do not achieve the results they unreasonably expect based on reports by others.

    I would hope you give 5:2 a chance. Do your diet days correctly for at least two months. You will then have a basis for how 5:2 works for you, you will know if ‘fasting’ is bearable for you, and be able to modify your diet and eating pattern in a way that ‘works for you’ which, hopefully, means in a way that is sustainable for you over a period of time that is long enough for you to lose the amount of weight you want to lose.

    Here is some information that might help you on your ‘journey’:

    Good Luck!

    I’ve been practicing the 5-2 plan for a year and a half. I find it easy and interesting how great I feel about it. The most important thing I’ve found is that the day after the fast I FEEL FANTASTIC! I really do. My day starts off light and fresh and wholesome. I do not feel hungry nor do I feel deprived. I feel absolutely great. Then I eat something… and that old bloated feeling begins to creep back into my life. I’m just eating because I think I should, not because I have to.

    I don’t binge but I do feel that I am allowed to eat whatever I want to eat on my eating days, which is why I’ve continued for a year and a half. I released about 20 pounds, but more importantly I feel in control and ready to do my fast again and again.

    When I focus on how great I feel on the day after I fast, everything feels better, and I want that feeling again and again.

    No books or apps required. G


    (I’m new to this forum. I’ve posted this comment elsewhere here. I just think that my experience would be helpful for anyone doing this plan to hear. Forgive me if I’m being redundant.)

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