The Warrior Fast - What, How, Why?
Yes, the warrior fast, commonly known as the warrior diet.
The reason why I use 'fast', instead of 'diet', is because I dislike the latter word. Also, I'm adopting the fasting protocol and not the original diet itself. So despite interchangeable terms, there's actually a difference. 'What' you ask?
THE WARRIOR DIET
This diet isn't an intermittent fasting protocol per se. Instead, it's 20 hours of under-feeding and 4 hours of over-feeding. During the under-feeding hours, you're allowed to consume small portions of fruits, nuts, vegetables, and protein to curb the hunger pangs. Then, when you break fast, you'll have to follow an eating order of vegetables, proteins, and carbohydrates. There're also food combinations to avoid - only proteins and vegetables can be eaten with anything, while nuts and fruits, and grains and fruits, cannot go together.
The warrior diet has a handful of rules to follow. And after reading up on them, it seems inconvenient - a personal statement. One of the reasons why I started intermittent fasting was for convenience. So in comes the warrior fast.
THE WARRIOR FAST
It's safe to say the warrior fast was adapted from the warrior diet, as it follows the same time distribution. But unlike the diet, it's a 20-hour fast with a 4-hour feeding window. 20 hours may seem like a long time, but if you've ever pushed your 16/8 protocol to 18/6 before, what's an extra 2 hours?
Since I started intermittent fasting, I've done 20-hour fasts at random. On regular days, I've extended my 16/8 protocol to 18/6. I've also successfully completed a 24-hour fast with little whining. Seeing as these different methods have no ill effects on my body - a constant eye on your body's reaction is required for women - I've officially adopted the warrior fast.
With my current schedule, I've set my feeding window from 5:30pm to 9:30pm on weekdays. Transitioning into the weekends, I do a 16-hour fast (breaking fast on Saturday at 1:30pm, closing at 5:30pm). Then 20 hours into Sunday (1:30pm to 9:30pm feeding window), followed by 20 hours into Monday... and so on, so forth. Simply put, I do the warrior fast six days a week, and the 16/8 once a week.
When it comes to breaking fast, I usually do so with a protein shake. I'll then have a proper meal 30-90 minutes after (depending on whether I weight-train fasted or fed).
BENEFITS OF THE WARRIOR FAST
I kick-started the warrior fast shortly after my return from Hokkaido. Since then, I've got a better control over my appetite. An 8-hour feeding window was too wide for me. And with a huge appetite after a fast, I struggled to stop eating - believe it or not, I could actually eat continuously for 8 hours when at home (where the food is). By narrowing the feeding window to 4 hours, I'm now unable to overfeed. Also, oddly enough, I find myself rarely craving for desserts and snacks - this coming from someone who claims she has a sweet-tooth.
Oh, and let's not forget, I save money on breakfast and lunch.
*Since I mentioned 'appetite', I should add that overeating is a common problem for IFers. After a month, I realised I was developing a habit of stuffing myself. Changing to the warrior fast is one of my steps of combating overeating. I'll also write about my six other tactics in a separate post soon.
SHOULD YOU DO THE WARRIOR FAST?
You should... do what suits you - no body is the same. The lifestyle changes you make depend on you and your body. Nobody can say what's good or bad for you. Ok, well, I guess a doctor can. But I'm not a doctor, so you do you.
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