In May of 2018 I decided to try intermittent fasting 16 hours a day for the very first time.
Since then I’ve gone in and out of intermittent fasting, up and down with my weight, and off and on with consistency in my exercise routine.
But today culminates one full year of my roller-coaster of a weight loss journey!
In this post I’ll share my one year intermittent fasting before and after results, complete with photos, stats, lessons learned, and tips for you if you’re considering embarking upon an intermittent fasting journey of your own.
Here we go!
*This post contains affiliate links
HELPFUL INTERMITTENT FASTING RESOURCES
- 12-Week Intermittent Fasting Fitness Planner: Here on Amazon Prime
- The Complete Guide To Intermittent Fasting by Dr. Jason Fung: FREE Audiobook | Kindle Version
- RENPHO Digital Bluetooth Scale with Body Fat Percentages: Here on Amazon Prime
- Easy Measuring Tape: Here on Amazon Prime
- Free Reddit Intermittent Fasting Forum: r/intermittentfasting
- Free 30-Day Fitness Group: Click here to join!
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
If you don’t already know, intermittent fasting is an extremely popular way of eating that keeps weight loss easy.
You eat all your day’s food within a set period of time and fast the remainder of the day.
The most common intermittent fasting diet plan is 16/8.
This means you’ll fast for 16 hours of the day, and consume all your nutrients within 8 hours.
For many, this means eating between 12pm and 8pm, fasting through the night, skipping breakfast the next day, and starting with lunch at noon.
Why I Chose Intermittent Fasting
In my younger years I was extremely active.
I was a cheerleader in high school then danced through college and beyond. Eating whatever I wanted and maintaining a slim physique was SO easy!
But once I grew a little older my lifestyle changed and I began to pack on the pounds.
I fell in love with the best guy on the planet, and proceeded to lots of eating out, Netflix & Chillin’, and not a whole lot of exercise.
Pregnancy and motherhood only added fuel to the fire.
I went from a toned 135 pounds to a jiggly 196 pounds (at my peak) in just a few short years.
Unhappy with my body and my life, I was intrigued when I stumbled upon the r/intermittentfasting forum on Reddit.
People were sharing their wild intermittent fasting weight loss success stories and photos left and right!
As tempting as it was to jump straight in, I was a bit skeptical.
Concerned about scary health risks like metabolic damage or throwing my body into “starvation mode”, it took about a year for me to fully understand how avoiding eating could actually be a safe was to lose weight.
The ONE Book That Changed It All
Dr. Jason Fung’s The Complete Guide To Intermittent Fasting came highly recommended as an intermittent fasting Bible of sorts.
I instantly downloaded the Kindle version and got started reading straight away.
Though I tried to get into it, I found myself too busy with work and parenting to ever sit down long enough to make something out of it.
That’s when I had the bright idea of grabbing the audio book. Now THIS was a game changer.
Not only was I able to devour the entire book in just a few short days while doing other things like driving, cooking, cleaning and changing diapers, but the audio version was FREE!
You see, if you’re a new Audible member you get your first two books totally free (I did not know this at first). And you can still cancel your membership at any time… so it was a totally risk-free way for me to get the information I needed. (I’m still a happy member though, lol)!
What Makes This Intermittent Fasting Book So Great?
I personally enjoyed it because while personal anecdotes and before and after pictures are exciting and motivating, I see the value in science-backed, professional research letting me know what I’m about to do is safe and truly effective.
Upon listening to the audio book I felt confident I was making an educated, safe decision, and it was all systems go!
As a bonus, it helped get my skeptical husband on board with fasting too!
He’s the type to swear you MUST eat breakfast first thing every morning and eat every 2-3 hours throughout the day or you’ll fold up and die lol…
So I strategically made sure to play it while my husband was within earshot, and the information helped soften him to the idea.
In a nutshell, this audio book was the final nail in the coffin that sealed the deal on my trying intermittent fasting!
So, for the month of May 2018 I stuck to intermittent fasting 16 hours a day.
A year later, here we are!
Intermittent Fasting 16/8 Trial
What’s really cool about recapping a year is that at least for me, I get to see the big picture.
I started with 16/8 intermittent fasting in May and got great results – losing ten pounds. But how sustainable was that?
For me, not very.
I went on vacation in June, lost my momentum, and regained twelve pounds (though I only lost 10 in the first place)!
Throughout the rest of the past year I tried different things.
12 Hours Intermittent Fasting Trial
In September I re-committed and tried fasting for just 12 hours a day to see if I could still lose weight with a more sustainable commitment. And I did!
I lost 12 pounds that month – even more than fasting 16 hours a day.
But a huge reason why I lost more weight fasting 12 hours than 16 is that my diet was SUPER clean.
Like, if you ate as clean as I did the last 2-3 weeks of that trial period, you wouldn’t have had to fast at all.
It was great success – again – but I can’t even really say the fasting had terribly much to do with it.
And yet again, I wasn’t disciplined enough to sustain it.
I STILL backslid!
Ever Since Then…
Ever since then I’ve kinda-sorta fasted consistently… more in recent months, actually.
Like many, I trailed off toward the end of 2018, with holidays and stress and such. At the beginning of the new year I jumped in hardcore and did pretty well, then after February fell back off.
Since mid-March of 2019 I have managed to stay consistent fasting around 13-14 hours a day on average. More on that later, but as you view my photos and results in the next section, keep in mind what they really consist of, okay?
Intermittent Fasting 1 Year Before And After Results
So, here’s the part you’ve been waiting for. One year of intermittent fasting before and after results!
Starting weight: 178.6 | Ending weight: 164| Weight lost: 14.6 lbs
Starting body fat %: 38.8% | Ending body fat %: 34% | Body fat % lost: 4.8%
One Year Intermittent Fasting Before & After Pictures
A Quick Note About Measurements With Intermittent Fasting
So, we all know that the scale is definitely a love-hate thing, but it’s important. What I did was get a biometric scale that tracks more than just body weight. The one I use and recommend is the Renpho Bluetooth BMI Scale. This scale is so awesome because it’s 1/3rd of the price of the wildly popular Fitbit Aria scale and has everything you need to track your progress.
I like it a lot because it syncs seamlessly to my iphone and comes with a free app for tracking all my data. So that’s how I was able to effortlessly calculate body fat lost in all my charts!
My Experience Intermittent Fasting One Year
Being totally honest, at the very beginning of my intermittent fasting experiment, things went so well so quickly that I thought I’d found my magic bullet.
Since I lost so much weight so rapidly the first month, I imagined I’d have lost at least 30 pounds in a year.
Having lost around 15 pounds and 5% body fat in a year is a little underwhelming because that’s not that much more than I lost in just the first month.
Looking at my photos, I feel SO PROUD!
Because the thing is, the first month is always easy.
Motivation is through the charts, everything is fresh and new and it’s just a lot easier to commit. But after the newness wears off and life throws curve balls, it takes a certain amount of grit and determination to continue. I just have struggled with that SO freaking hard in the past.
I thought having a public blog about it would help… and it HAS to a certain extent… but I’m still an imperfect human struggling (unfortunately publicly) and… it is what it is.
Focus On The Good
As an unwavering “glass half full” kinda girl though, I am a huge, HUGE advocate of focusing on the good!
So, instead of looking at it as I “only” lost 15 pounds, I choose to celebrate how I KEPT 15 pounds off, which is more important.
If I could choose between losing 30 pounds quickly and regaining most or all of it, and keeping off half of that? Give me the latter!
Resist The Urge To Compare Yourself To Others
Having started my intermittent fasting journey with Reddit forums and by viewing others’ overwhelming success, it’s hard to look at where I am after a year of fasting and avoid comparing.
While others’ stories are motivating, it’s easy to fall into the trap of comparison. My first inkling is to feel bad about myself and view my progress as failure, because I didn’t do as well as they did.
But I know better than that!
Comparing yourself to other people is NEVER the answer. You have no idea what path they have been on, right?
And at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter.
What matters is that you show up for yourself and keep trying and keep pushing to be the best you can be. That you celebrate your wins and find little changes you can make to improve your results.
Be Your Own Best Friend
I was able to turn this attitude around by being my own best friend.
If my bestie came to me and said “Allie, I lost only 15 pounds in a year and I feel bad because I saw some other chick who lost 50… I’m a lard butt!”
I’d say “girl that’s GREAT… you look AMAZING… stop being so hard on yourself, you should be proud of every pound you kept off… just keep going”!
Then I’d offer to do a workout together.
So, that’s what I did! 🙂
After viewing my intermittent fasting 1 year before and after pictures, I analyzed what parts of my body were most improved, patted myself on the back, then went for a jog!
Intermittent Fasting One Year: Exercise Is Key
One of the things I like most about intermittent fasting is that you don’t really have to exercise all that much. But I’m going to give you my honest thoughts based on a year of experience.
Exercise is still really important.
Maybe my personal struggle with consistency makes this more important for me than others who have no issue fasting 16+ hours a day every day all year long.
But fasting 16 hours a day, 365 days a year for me just isn’t going to happen. So working out has to be a key point in my life.
Better Results With Accountability
I started the 30-Day Fitness Challenge Facebook Group back in December. At the beginning of each month the challenge chart is posted. Then there’s a daily thread for the specific set of exercises.
Challenges are fairly easy to accommodate everybody. So those who are super-beginners can swing it. More advanced participants just double or triple up on sets.
It’s not meant to be a full workout (you still need to do cardio and ideally other strength training, too). But it helps to have something light and attainable to do every day, I’ve found.
I definitely feel the accountability group has helped me stay on track so much! Even though I haven’t done each exercise every day since December, I’ve been more active than ever before in the past several years since having the group.
I invite you to join us!
Cardio plus resistance training plus intermittent fasting and still eating healthy really has been the best combo. I don’t think there’s a real shortcut to weight loss.
I know we all want to eat whatever we want, never exercise and just be effortlessly fit.
Maybe some people can do that, but I can’t.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting One Year
Here is a brief bullet-point summary of the best benefits of intermittent fasting for one year, given all the ups and downs I’ve experienced:
- Permanent weight loss: Even though intermittent fasting was off and on, I wound up settling on 13 hours minimum and have stuck with this for several months. I believe this has been key to keeping off 15 pounds over the year and can maintain this indefinitely.
- Intermittent fasting is simple: I still think it’s the simplest weight loss tool I’ve ever used.
- It’s flexible: People write in asking me all the time if they can switch it up for special days, or fast shorter than 16 hours, or take a week or two off and come back. The answer is pretty much always yes. You don’t have to be extremely rigid, and I like this.
The Downside To Intermittent Fasting One Year
- Early quick wins: I know some people don’t see fast wins in the beginning the way I did, but I think this is a good thing. I got overconfident with losing 10 pounds very quickly. Then things got away from me. We want fast wins but too fast isn’t sustainable. If you’re losing much more than 1-2 pounds a week, something is probably wrong. And you’ll crash and burn.
- Can lead to lack of overall health management: The thing is you CAN lose weight just by eating less. You don’t HAVE to exercise or eat clean. You can eat one meal of pizza and fries once a day, never exercise and lose weight. This is intermittent fasting success. But it’s not healthy. I’ve found I feel much better overall when I fast but do it the healthy way.
Intermittent Fasting One Year Results
So there you have it! Another one-year intermittent fasting before and after results story among the many you’ll come to find across the internet. I hope my story gave you some insight to what you can expect if you give it a try.
Results will be different for everyone, but if I have ONE more important piece of advice to share, it’s to take it seriously and don’t look at it as a shortcut.
You still have to do the work if you want massive, lasting results.
Happy fasting, and don’t be afraid to ask any questions or leave comments below. I’d love to hear what’s on your mind!
The ONLY Intermittent Fasting Planner You’ll Ever Need!
If you’d like to get started with intermittent fasting or you want to take your intermittent fasting weight loss to the next level, what you really need is my Intermittent Fasting Fitness Planner!
It literally has everything you need to track fasting, strength & cardio training, pounds/inches lost, space for notes, slots for before & after pics, and three 30-day fitness challenge charts!
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