The compliance question: intermittent fasting

This is not the first time I’ve followed the 5:2 diet. I did it for about 4 months a few years back, and have done a couple of weeks here and there since then. So I thought it would be easy, and a good diet to follow in a month with a lot of travelling.


It turned out to be harder than expected, though. My aim was to do 8 fast days in the 4 week period, and try not to go too mad on the other days. I fell off several wagons over the course of the month. Broadly speaking, it went:

  1. Conference travel, cake, cigarettes and beer: 1 fast day
  2. No alcohol, lots of exercise: 3 fast days
  3. Lots of beer and cigarettes: 1 fast day
  4. No alcohol, quite a bit of exercise, no cigarettes: 2 fast days

I was expecting the first week to be dietarily challenging. The third week was a general collapse of willpower that I hadn’t anticipated, but hey. It’s the first completely useless diet week this year so I’ll let myself off the hook.

How easy was it to be veggie?

Easy. Particularly if you’re OK with eggs, tofu and quorn, all of which are low calorie and tasty. Just schedule the fast days for times when there’s not much else on.

What about eating out?

Don’t eat out on fast days then you’re fine.

What about snacking?

Don’t. You have to just say “I’ll snack tomorrow”.


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