I am a fat loss expert with 10 years of experience working one on one with clients.
I teach my clients how to achieve long-term success, by focusing on habits.
Not on restrictive diets.
There are many different intermittent fasting plans and methods.
Each one of them is going to suit different people.
Choosing the best intermittent fasting window to lose weight can be confusing.
In this article, I will explain the different intermittent fasting eating windows.
Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss
I would like to add here.
Intermittent fasting is NOT a magic pill for weight loss.
The weight loss benefits of intermittent fasting come from being in a calorie deficit.
For most people, intermittent fasting makes eating in a calorie deficit, easier.
It makes sense.
Eating during a smaller window inevitably means you eat fewer calories.
However, it is still possible to eat in a calorie surplus whilst fasting.
This will mean that you won’t lose weight, and will likely end up putting on weight.
I talk more about this in my article “Top 5 Intermittent Fasting Mistakes”
The reason I am so passionate about intermittent fasting for weight loss is because of all the other benefits you get.
Many people that try intermittent fasting, report having more energy and feeling less hungry.
Plus, you get to eat big, satisfying meals, but overall, you are still in a calorie deficit.
Which means weight loss!
The Different Intermittent Fasting Eating Windows for Weight Loss
There are many intermittent fasting eating windows you can consider.
The one you choose is going to be down to previous eating habits, gender, and experience.
Each one will benefit your health and could help you lose weight.
Choose an intermittent fasting window that fits in with your lifestyle.
Make sure you are flexible in your approach and avoid “all or nothing” thinking.
12:12 – The 12:12 intermittent fasting plan.
Eat during a 12-hour window and fast the remaining 12 hours.
I believe that everyone should aim for this, no matter what their goals are.
I start most of my clients with the 12:12 intermittent fasting window.
Almost straight away, their sleep and energy levels improve.
If you are brand new to the concept of intermittent fasting, start here.
An example of a schedule of the 12:12 eating window would be to eat dinner around 7 p.m, fast overnight and break your fast at 7am.
16:8 – The 16:8 intermittent fasting plan.
A fasting window of 16 hours and an eating window of 8 hours.
This is the most popular method of intermittent fasting.
An 8-hour eating window seems to be the perfect amount of time to get a good number of calories in.
Even if you are particularly active.
But, for most people, not long enough to overconsume and end up in a calorie surplus.
The classic example of this would be to finish eating at 8pm, fast for 16 hours, and break your fast at 12pm the next day.
Although this is the most popular intermittent fasting plan.
This is an intermediate method.
Some people will do well going straight into it.
Others would do much better starting with 12:12.
Some people experience negative side effects by jumping straight into a 16-hour fast.
Those can include, lethargy, irritability, headaches, and hunger.
Concerned about this?
Check out my 30 Day Reset, it will teach you how to ease into the process of fasting, without any negative side effects.
18:6 – The 18:6 intermittent fasting plan.
Fasting for 18 hours with a 6-hour eating window.
Now things are becoming more advanced.
18 hours is a long time to go without food.
Do not attempt this if you are new to intermittent fasting.
You are likely to experience negative side effects.
Once you get used to fasting, 18 hours can be easy.
Particularly if you aren’t that active.
If you are very active, training three times per week, you could do 18:6 hours on your rest days.
An example day would be finishing your eating window at 8pm and breaking your fast at 2pm the next day.
20:4 – The 20:4 intermittent fasting method.
Also known as the Warrior Method, or the “One Meal Day” OMAD.
Is the most intense intermittent fasting plan that can be done every day.
Again, if you are a beginner. Do not try this. You will not be able to sustain it.
If you are particularly active, don’t do this more than twice a week, on your rest days.
Most people eat one big meal when following the 20:4 intermittent fasting window.
It can be done every day if you are very inactive, because of your job, or injury.
An example day would be to finish eating at 8pm and break your fast at 4pm the next day.
2 Meal Day – My method of intermittent fasting.
I created the 2 Meal Day because focusing on eating windows can cause issues.
For me, the benefits of intermittent fasting come from learning to listen to your body.
When you focus on the clock, you don’t learn to listen to your body.
You eat because the clock tells you to.
This can mean that fasting doesn’t become a way of life.
The 2 Meal Day isn’t complicated.
Drop one meal, either breakfast or dinner.
Learn to eat when you are hungry.
Your fasting window will change daily between 12-20 hours.
It’s the best way to learn to be flexible in your approach and get long-term success.
I have spent years experimenting and trying out every intermittent fasting windows.
I have helped 1000s of other people incorporate it as a way of life.
Most people choose to skip breakfast and have a large, satisfying lunch and dinner.
For the particularly active, an optional snack in between those two meals works well.
Want to ease into the process of fasting, lose weight, and eat the foods you love, without calorie counting?
Check out my 30 Day Reset.
Tips to Help You Lose Weight with Intermittent Fasting
Below are some extra tips that I give my one-on-one coaching clients when they start intermittent fasting.
Start Slow – Whichever fasting method you choose, you want to work your way up to a longer fasting period.
Take your time making small changes in building up to your desired fast. That way, you can sustain the changes.
- Eat More Protein – Add protein to every meal, especially when you are limiting your eating window to only a few hours.
Protein can help you feel more satisfied after your eating window.
You will be less likely to feel hungry or experience food cravings when your fast begins.
2. Drink A Lot of Water – Staying hydrated can help keep your energy levels up and keep your moods stable as you manage your fasting periods.
It can also help your control your hunger and make fasting a little more comfortable.
- Up Your Activity – You don’t have to do hard exercise to lose weight.
What works well is upping your overall activity.
You can do this by aiming to get 7-10k steps in per day.
This will burn a lot of calories, but it won’t raise your hunger levels.
If you are a beginner. Start slow.
Do not jump straight into a 16+ hour fast.
You might get quicker weight loss results in the short term.
But you shouldn’t be looking for short-term success.
Instead of asking the question, “how quickly can I lose x weight”
Ask yourself the question: “how can I guarantee that I can lose weight in the long term”
Easing into the process is the best way of ensuring long-term success.
You don’t want to choose a too restrictive plan, or it may backfire.
Trust me, I’ve been doing this for 10 years.
Want to learn more about intermittent fasting?