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I had someone ask me today what a condensed eating window is. I imagine a few people wonder about it, so I decided to do a quick and hopefully simple explanation of it here.

Depending on the intermittent fasting diet  protocol you follow, the condensed eating window , is simply to the time you take in food.

Let’s take a couple of examples that use this process.

The Fast 5 Diet

The fast 5  intermittent fasting plan, works on a 19 – 5 protocol. So you fast for 19 hours, and have 5 hours in which to eat. So your condensed eating window  on this plan is simply 5 hours.

Leangains

The leangains plan  works on a 16 – 8  plan, so in this case the condensed eating window is 8 hours and you fast for  16 hours.

There is no fixed rule for this eating window, again, you can either follow a plan the like ones I mention here, or simply adjust it to something you feel comfortable with.  I have played around in the past with a condensed eating window as small as 3 hours, again, usually between 5 and 8pm on Mondays and Tuesdays. There are no hard of fast rules here.

Not all intermittent fasting plans have a condensed eating window, for example eat stop eat  works on a 24hr fasting period, so no food is consumed during that time.  So there you go, a condensed eating window is just  a period of time you eat between fasts.

 

 

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My First Marathon.

by Dave on April 10, 2012

At The Start - All Set

When I first started writing  this weight loss blog  more than 3 years ago, my goal was to make lifestyle changes that would enable me to not only lose weight, but once I had lost it, to remain within a healthy weight range for the long term. One of those changes is well documented here, after all it’s the name of this blog ! The goal  was to become a retired dieter and get off the diet merry go round for good. One other goal I had, I kept private until now.

I had set myself a target of running a marathon before I was 50. The challenge of running 26.2 miles has always had a strange draw to me. Back in the winter of 2008 , at 44 years of age, and with 56 lbs to lose, that goal seemed a long way off.  Well this past Easter Sunday weekend I achieved that goal.

I ran the Hull Marathon in 4 hours 13 minutes and 28 seconds , not too shabby for a 47 year old former fat boy, on his first  attempt !.

Me With My Marathon Medal

I actually entered for the Marathon way back in November 2011, the reason I did not say anything about it before now was simply because  I still felt so much could go wrong before the day, or even on the day !.  As it turned out, other than the last 3 miles, all went well.  Those last 3 miles ? .. oh those were sheer hell, At 21 miles I  was running well and looking at a time of under 4 hours, but at mile 23 my legs went, and my thoughts turned from doing the Marathon in under 4 hours to just making sure I finished it.

Those last 3 miles took everything I had, pysically I had nothing left, it was just sheer mental determination that got me over that finishing line. Today, 2 days after the race, my legs are still weak. In my training I had done regular long runs up to 20 miles, and I was always fine after those runs, but this extra 6 miles has left me feeling worse than the first day I ever started to do exercise .

The training guide I followed did not have me running past 20 miles. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but knowing what I know now, I would have trained beyond the 26 miles I had to run.

This issue of how to train for a marathon, actually reminds me a lot of the typical advice we see about weight loss. There are so many different people telling you how you should lose weight and what is the right way to go about doing it , but as I often say on this blog, the right way is the way that works for you.  Before Sunday I had never run a marathon, so I had no personal experience I could use to help me prepare. I looked online  and of course found many different views on how to train for a marathon, and of course plenty of debate between runners as to what was the right or wrong way to train, the similarities with the weight loss websites out there was very evident to me, It was hard to know what to do. For ” don’t run more than xx miles per day training or you will burn out, you could easily be reading, “don’t cut calories too much or you will go into starvation mode” !.

NOT mile 23 !

Now that I have done the distance myself, I now know what I would do to prepare for it again, even though there would be people telling me it’s wrong, I know for me that I need to run past 26 miles in training so that I know I can do it on the race day. For every person who tells me ” you don’t need to do 26 miles before the day ” I now know from doing that race, for my own peace of mind, I do !.  I am sure there are plenty of runners who complete marathons while only training to 20 miles on their long runs, but for me, that is not going to work.

Weight Loss is the same, there are plenty of different ways to get to your goal, but the right way, is the one that you can follow easily and  not that you have to take every ounce of mental strength to try and  stick to it. You can do that one day, but long term, you have to find a better way to get you over the line.

So this is one goal complete. So what do I set myself next you may ask ?  Well now I want to run below 4 hours next year, so yes I will do it again, especially as I won a free entry to next years marathon as I was the 500th applicant for this years. Typical, the only thing I win in my life is the chance to run another 26 miles !

What is the take home message  from this post ?  well, 2 things really…

No 1. No matter if you are running a marathon, or looking to lose weight, be sure to take some time and  listen to yourself and not just what everyone else tells you. Do what gets you the results you want. If you don’t like to eat breakfast, then don’t eat breakfast if that is what works for you. If you are making progress in what you do, stick with it, if you are not getting the results you want, then make a change.

 

No 2  Always set yourself new challenges to keep you moving forward, and not slipping back to your old ways.  Keep your goals realistic. I can’t run a marathon in 14 days with no training, just the same as you can’t lose 30lbs in  14 days, but we can start doing the things that help us achieve those targets over time.  The important thing is how much do want it ?

I ran the Hull Marathon in aid of  The Hey Smile Foundation  that link will show you the charities they support. If any reader would like to make a donation, no matter how small, you can do so through my Just Giving Page Here

 

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Weight Loss Help : This Time Make A Change

January 6, 2012

Need some weight loss help ?  Well I hope I can pass on some pointers from my ongoing weight loss tips series that help get you get where you want to be. This weight loss blog is now 3 years old.  It started  January 1st 2009, and in the beginning, it was my own way of […]

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Weight Loss And The Holidays

December 24, 2011

So here we are coming to the end of another year. The holidays are upon us, and it’s a time to eat drink and be merry so the saying goes.  I could not let the Christmas season pass without my usual Holiday saying , so here is just a quick post on the subject. Yes […]

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Maintaining Weight Loss

October 31, 2011

It is now 2 years since I reached my original weight loss target  of losing 4 stone or 56lbs  ( a little over 26 kilos if you want the metrics ). 12 Months later I posted again talking about keeping the weight off  and how I had not only managed to do so, but was now at […]

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Flexible Intermittent Fasting

July 31, 2011

No matter if you are fasting to lose weight or  just looking to use intermittent fasting to help control your weight, the important thing  is to use it in a way that best  fits with your personal lifestyle. I have used I.F now for two and a half years, and I would say the main reason […]

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I Need To Lose Weight

June 30, 2011

So let me ask you… what was the trigger for you ?  The straw the broke the camels back, that defining moment, where you took a good look at yourself and said those 5 words ” I need to lose weight ” It tends to be different for all of us. for some it could […]

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Tips For Weight Loss – Listen To Chris Gardner.

June 29, 2011

Time for another post in the weight loss tips series. The basic idea of losing weight is simple, calories in vs calories out, the problem is  it’s just not easy, so with that in mind I want you to listen to Chris Gardner, or rather Will Smith playing Chris Gardner in the film The Pursuit of […]

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Weight Loss Tips – Dealing With A Blowout.

June 21, 2011

This post is part of  my weight loss tips series. Weight Loss Tips Looking Ahead When you are looking to lose weight life does not stop, Birthdays, Holidays, Social nights out etc, all form part of our regular lifestyle. I have friends who constantly put off losing weight until after whichever one of these events […]

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Weight Loss Exercise and Routine Disruptions

May 31, 2011

For almost 2 years now I have had no problems to keep my weight under control. For many people, losing weight is the easy part, keeping that weight off is what they find difficult. In my view one reason for the weight coming back is that there was no lasting changes made. You often will […]

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