The Science of Motivation

Tips for Starting Intermittent Fasting

By now, you have probably read about intermittent fasting and all of its health benefits, but now it is time to start planning. You should not just jump into it without getting all the pertinent information, and definitely not without planning ahead of time. Here are some tips for starting an intermittent fasting protocol.

Plan, plan, plan...
One of the most integral parts of starting an intermittent fasting protocol is planning properly. You need enough time to plan ahead, including choosing your protocol, and knowing when and how to eat. Don’t just spend 20 minutes reading about IF, then assume you can start tonight. It takes time to learn about different methods and what will work with your schedule. Take the time to write down what times of the day you will eat, workout, and fast, so that you know what to expect.

Don’t Make Common IF Mistakes
There are some mistakes that people tend to make when they begin with intermittent fasting. By planning ahead, you are already avoiding one of the common pitfalls. In addition, try not to obsess too much about the eating and fasting windows. This is where many people go wrong. Just eat at the same time for each eating window, and it should be fairly easy. You can also set timers or put it on your calendar if that is simpler for you. Over time, you will become accustomed to how long you go without eating. You also want to avoid these common mistakes:
  • Don’t binge eat when it’s time to eat after a fast
  • Avoid excessive cardio when you are fasting
  • Don’t use this as an excuse to eat what you want

Eat as Healthy as You Are able
When you first start with a new intermittent fasting protocol, make sure when you eat, you are eating healthy food, but don’t be too strict. There is a delicate balance here between nourishing your body and providing essential fuel that gets you through the next fasting stage, but not depriving yourself so much of what you want, that you can’t stick with intermittent fasting. It is okay to eat how you normally would with intermittent fasting, unless you have some type of strict diet regimen you need to stick to, from low-carb to being gluten-free. It is also a good idea to talk to your doctor about what to eat even while doing intermittent fasting.

Check out our next post in the IF series:  What to Eat and Drink While Intermittent Fasting