You do not need to consider scaling up your intermittent fasting efforts until you have reached the point where you have built up a good amount of momentum, and that it is now more difficult for you to stop your fasting activities than it is to get started with them. Congratulate yourself for getting to this stage!
Why Consider Scaling Up Your Intermittent Fasting Methods?
This is going to depend on your physiology, but after you have followed a particular intermittent fasting method for a while you may start to hit a plateau. Intermittent fasting is a great way to lose weight and as you know it has other benefits too.
A lot of the weight that you lose at the beginning of intermittent fasting will be water weight. Some people will have around 20% of water weight which is a significant amount. But this does vary from one person to the next – some people are prone to retain more water than others.
Once you lose this water weight, the plateau can then strike. We cannot tell you when this will be as it is different for everyone. When you notice that weight loss is not happening very much, then, it is probably the plateau. You then need to strongly consider scaling up your intermittent fasting by then. Here are the 3 intermittent fasting methods you can do.
If you are on the lean Gains 8:16 program as we recommended, you do not have to go into “full-on” fasting to get over the plateau. Just follow the advice in this blog post to make an easy transition with the scaling-up process.
#1 The “Eat Stop Eat” Method
As you know, you will need to go full-day fasting with the “Eat Stop Eat” method. You will eat one day and then fast on the next day. This can really help to trigger ketosis in your body which is when stored fats are used for energy because food calories are not present.
It is fairly easy to make the transition from “Lean Gains” to “Eat Stop Eat” after you are used to fasting. One thing to remember though is that when you transition to “Eat Stop Eat”, you need to moderate the number of carbohydrates you consume or it will be more difficult to trigger ketosis.
#2 The “2:2:2” Method
Once you have transitioned to “Eat Stop Eat” and got used to it you can make the move up again to fasting for two days in a row with the “2:2:2” method. Here, you will eat for 2 days then fast for 2 days, and then eat for 2 days again.
When you fast for longer periods, it helps to activate ketosis. Fasting for 2 days is certainly not easy and we do not suggest that you rush into this. Spend some time with “Eat Stop Eat” before you make this change.
#3 The “3:3:3” Method
After using the “2:2:2” method successfully, you can scale up to the “3:3:3” method. Yes, this means 3 days of eating followed by 3 days of fasting and then 3 days of eating again. Fasting for 3 days should not be too difficult for you after you have got into the habit of fasting for 2 days with the “2:2:2” method.
Again, the longer the fasting period, the easier the ketosis is triggered. There is a much better chance of you burning more fat if you can fast for 3 days regularly. You must watch your carbohydrate intake with the longer fasting methods though.
Use Mindfulness to Help you with Intermittent Fasting
Adopting a mindfulness routine should help you with whatever intermittent fasting method you are using. We especially recommend this when you are scaling up. You don’t need to formally meditate here. Just learn how to achieve mindfulness in the best way that suits you.
Mindfulness is a powerful way to control your thoughts. If you are having continuous thoughts about eating on fasting days then mindfulness can distract you and bring you back to the present moment. It is a good way to improve your self-discipline.
There you go, the “3 Intermittent Fasting Methods” for scaling up.
In the final post of this series, we will discuss the best practices we recommend that you can follow to be successful with intermittent fasting.
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