Following on from part 1, we know what intermittent fasting is, if we should do it, whether it works and explained the 5 – 2 intermittent fasting strategy. As I said in part 1, it’s great to give you that kick-start and get the ball rolling, but not so great if your starting to exercise more frequently or have plateaued on your weight loss journey. So for those taking the next step, my personal favourite & the strategy I would recommend is the 16 – 8 intermittent fast.

16/8 involves giving you an 8 hour window of eating. As many meals as you like as long as you stay within the window. The other 16 hours is a fasting period. This applies for every day of the week.

16 hours may seem like a hell of a long time to not eat, but if you consider your asleep for 8 of those hours, not eating within 4 hours of waking up and 4 hours before going to bed, it make this a lot more manageable.

As many people often skip breakfast due to our busy lifestyles, this may feel like a more natural strategy.

The greatest benefit of this strategy is it allows you to maintain high intensity works outs. You’re able to eat before, for energy, and eat afterwards, for recovery.

You can drink water, coffee and other non-caloric beverages during the fast, and this can help reduce hunger levels. No high sugar soda’s or fizzes. Try to keep fruit juice consumption low as well.

Pros

  • More natural
  • Flexible
  • Great results for those trying to become more defined, visible abs etc.
  • Allows you to train at a high intensity

Cons

  • Must be organised
  • Weekends can be hard
  • More knowledge needed about macro’s (protein, carbs, fats, etc.)

Where People Get Unstuck

Eating Junk in Your Window

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts

As with any fasting strategy, the periods of time where you are able to eat, should be filled with healthy nutritious foods. High protein meals with lots of veg/salad work best, saving carb heavy meals for after your workouts.

Being Unorganised

You’re only able to eat within an 8 hour period; however you can move this window depending on your day. Going out for breakfast? Eat 9am till 5pm. Dinner with the family? Eat 2pm till 10pm. The more you move your window around however, the more difficult it will be to stick to, as you may end up with extended fasting periods. Therefore try and stick to the same window 5 days a week.

Weekends

Weekends are the bane of anyone trying to lose weight. You’re out of routine, you’re going out for dinners, party’s weddings etc. Again if your organised you can stick to your window. The worst mentality to have is “it’s the weekend; I’ll eat what I want”. Friday (we’ll count Friday) Saturday and Sunday make up 43% of your week. So try and keep on track for at least 6 days a week, routine and organisation are the keys to success here.

I Don’t Know What to Eat in my Window

The better you get and the more defined you become, the more you need to know what the nutritional content of your food is. This tends to freak people out. Carbs are generally beige, protein used to be alive.

Top Tip: Classify things as high or low. High or low carbs, fats and protein. Get in the habit of checking the backs of packets, within a week you’ll have a good idea of what you’re eating.

Bonus tip: for those you prefer to follow numbers here are some basic guidelines:

  • Carbs: Under 125g
  • Protein: 1g per lbs of bodyweight
  • Fat: Under 50
  • Saturated fat: Under 8 g

The verdict

This is a great fating strategy and one I recommend, predominately because it allows you to maintain high intensity and strength based workouts, while still losing fat at the same time. Slightly more advanced than other strategy, but one that I think will take you on to the next level.

Apply For A Free Body Transformation Session

Discover The Steps To Long Term, Sustainable Weight Loss With One Of Our Expert Body Transformation Coaches