Thursday, January 28, 2010

Smashing the Wall

I initially was blindsided by my body's sudden "craving" for carbs after exercise. Been on the "low carb wagon" for years at least partially, and the idea that carbs are "bad" had unfortunately firmly lodged itself in my brain. That was due mostly because the only weight loss success I've had was through following a low carb regime. Ergo, protein and fat was good, while fruit, starchy veggies, pasta and ice cream were BAD. Not to be touched without the risk of getting fat again. Or developing diabetes, or growing hair on my palms.

That was before IF. With IF, I'm off the micronutrient merry-go-round. No more counting carbs or fat or whatever. I don't even count calories. I just eat what I feel I need. And after exercise, especially heavy exercise, I need carbs. Tonight I had a banana slathered in peanut butter and chocolate sauce . And then a plate of spaghetti. Yummy.

Even though I don't count calories, my body does. The fact that I'm fasting 19 hours every day automatically cuts my calorie intake. Rather a lot, I might add. So now, my body just wants FOOD. Not high protein, low-carb, hi-carb, low protein, raw, vegetarian, macrobiotic or fruitarian. But real food that I can enjoy without worrying over every bite. Sometimes it's chocolate, most times meat, fish, veggies and "good" carbs.

What I didn't understand, lo these many years, was that weight loss is mostly calories-in, calories-out. IF lets me hear what my body's telling me very clearly. Instead of me deciding what to eat and how much, I'm starting to let my body decide. This sudden freedom from any diet restrictions, coupled with extremely clear body messages is a little bit unsettling at first. If I keep fasting 19 hours a day, there's no way I'm going to hang on to excess fat if I listen to what my body wants. I'm finally starting to do that. I think it will work out fine after this initial adjustment period. At any rate, I'm staying with the fasts and eating as much or as little as I need. Even carbs. All carbs.

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