If you are like the rest of the world…
You probably cringed at the thought of intermittent fasting, writing it off as just another get-slim-quick scheme while still secretly hoping that it would be the very thing that would get you closer to your body goals.
Well, you can stop straddling the fence because intermittent fasting is exactly what you have been searching for.
There are no gimmicks or money-wasting “magical” supplements involved either.
As crazy as it sounds, you can actually rid of various health conditions, shed stubborn pounds, and get to your ideal weight in just a few weeks by simply policing when you eat.
- 10 Approved Lazy Girl Fitness Hacks to Exercise Easily
- 8 Best Ways To Properly Start an Intermittent Fast
- 8 Food Habits That’ll Help You Keep the Weight Off
16:8 Intermittent Fasting Schedule and Meal Plan
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
You have probably heard about intermittent fasting in talks about dieting. However, it is actually not much of a diet at all. In fact, it focuses on when you eat, not necessarily what you eat.
This doesn’t mean that you should down a tray of cookies with each meal, but you can definitely enjoy a couple during feast hours. Speaking of feasting, your eating timeframe is customizable, but it is best to limit this period to eight hours so that you won’t give yourself too much time to eat your progress away.
How Can You Start the 16:8 Intermittent Fasting Schedule?
There are so many ways to jump on this fast, but one of the most popular and most effective schedules is the 16:8 version. Don’t give up hope so soon, nighttime snackers.
Put simply, on this plan, you will fast for 16 hours, leaving you with 8 hours to get your meals in. And while that might sound terrifying at first glance, it actually isn’t nearly as dreadful as you think.
In fact, a 16:8 intermittent fasting schedule provides the perfect window to get in all of your much-needed nutrients while still giving your body a break to properly digest it all.
And to put you at further ease, you will actually be sleeping through half of your fasting period anyways.
So, say goodbye to those Tum Tums and that 24-pack of ginger ale because most of your bellyaches and digestive issues will cease to exist in just a couple of weeks or so.
What you will first need to do is to commit to a particular 8-hour window to fit all of your meals in.
Since experts suggest that you should have your last meal about three hours before you turn in for the night, you probably will want to start early, like from 10 am to 6 pm or from 12 pm to 8 pm.
But if you are a night owl and barely exist in the morning time, you can definitely start later on in the day so that you won’t have to make any rigorous adjustments.
The Perfect Meal Plan for Fasting.
So, while you may have rejoiced at the thought of being free to eat whatever you want while on the 16:8 intermittent fasting plan, it is time, to be honest with yourself.
You want quick results and are sick of putting your blinders on every time you walk past a scale.
So, if you want to slim down that waistline and fit your favorite pair of jeans by summer, take note of the following meal plan for fasting and these helpful tips to help you customize it to meet your preferences.
If you are choosing to start fasting during breakfast time, try this:
- Meal one: Two scrambled eggs, a side of whole-grain toast, and a cup of black coffee
- Snack one: A cup of yogurt enriched with fleshy fruit or a fruit smoothie
- Meal two: Salmon or your choice of meat with brown rice and grilled spinach
- Snack two: A full banana and a cup of almonds
If you are skipping breakfast and jumping right into the good stuff, just replace meal one with a salad of your choice, preferably with a healthy fat, like avocado, and a few slices of lean meat.
And before you freak out, you don’t have to eat the same old foods every day, another reason why 16:8 intermittent fasting is a winner.
The sample above is only to give you some guidance as you find your own way.
A few other fasting meal choices you can cycle in and out:
- Nuts and seeds
- Fish, grilled chicken, lentils, beans
- Oats, quinoa, and any kind of whole grain
And as you probably have guessed, anything fried or loaded with sugar is not your friend, and that includes drinks as well. However, you can indulge in a sweet treat about once a week while repeating the word “moderation” in your head until the craving dissipates.
Tips to Help You Kick Things Up a Notch.
Before you go, jot down these cheat codes to help you get where you want to go in a fraction of the time.
- For one, you will want to fuel up on water. Not only will drinking half of your body weight in ounces help with your digestion, but it will give you the energy you need to pull through the day and drastically speed up your results.
- Lemons, ginger, and cinnamon are also godsends when it comes to suppressing your appetite, so incorporate them as often as possible. Another priceless gem is to drink herbal tea spiked with lemon and honey when hunger strikes.
- Reach for chamomile and lavender teas in place of your usual midnight snack as they will satisfy your hunger before luring you back to sleep.
- Lastly, do yourself a favor and hit the gym. We all know the life-changing benefits of combining exercise with clean eating, but because you are already fasting for 16 hours, your body will begin to use any excess fat as fuel, and exercising will only help you capitalize on this post-absorptive state.
Put down the Slim Fast, and step away from those sucky fat-burning supplements.
Intermittent fasting is the single transformative technique to help you become healthier, more fit, and strutting through life with even more confidence than you ever had imagined.
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