My Eating Routine Before the Experiment
I have been practicing intermittent fasting daily for over two years. Although I've tried several different protocols from 5:2 to alternate day fasting, my go-to is 18:6.
I usually eat from 12:30 to 6:30 and it works with my CrossFit and yoga schedule, my work schedule, and my family schedule. This eating routine is effortless for me. I'm not hungry until lunch, I eat a snack in the afternoon, then I'm done with family dinner by 6:30. I'm in bed two hours later since I have to get up by 5 a.m. to work out, so late-night eating in a non-issue.
During those six-hour eating windows, I eat a healthy plant-based diet, but I also indulge a little every day. The only issue is that since the holidays, I found that bigger indulgences were becoming an everyday thing — it wasn't just a square of dark chocolate after dinner. I was baking several times a week, spooning into nightly bowls of ice cream, and taking several trips to our local vegan bakery.
There's nothing wrong with indulging every day, but for me, my insatiable sugar cravings were becoming out of control. Eating tons of treats every day was making me super bloated, which got in the way of me getting a good night of sleep, and prevented me from feeling my best for early morning workouts. Actually I started to skip out on them because I was feeling so moody.
I thought if I had a designated day where I could enjoy these foods, then move on and stick to my healthy ways the rest of the week, that would be a win-win. Saturday was the day. The rule was there were no rules! Eat what I want, when I want it.