I have finally found what works for my body!

nklp
nklp Posts: 62 Member
edited January 2021 in Success Stories
Hi everyone. I began MFP in 2014, after gaining 50lbs in my first two years at Uni, going from 8st6lbs to 11st. While calorie restriction and excercise did help me to lose weight, because I'm short and have a really weird metabolism, in order to lose weight I was having to eat around 1,100 to get any weight loss at all. Over time this was obviously unsustainable. I felt cold all the time, my brain wasn't working properly, and eventually the weight loss plateaued at around 10st and wouldn't shift at all despite the extreme restriction.

I tried the 5-2 diet, eating 500kcal on fasting days, but found that on fasting days I was so ravenously hungry that I would either overconsume and go above my alloted 500kcal, or I would massively over eat on the following day; sometimes up to 2,300. The weight didn't climb up, but it wouldn't budge, and I had wild mood swings and was constantly battling with hunger and obsessive food cravings.

After a battle that lasted years, I gave up, and decided I would intuitively eat. I would allow myself to take comfort in food when I really felt the need, and focus my energy on my career, friendships and self-care. I'm really glad I did this, as completeing teacher training in the UK without these comforts would have been really really mentally draining. However, my weight began to creep up over the course of 3 years. Suddenly, my weight had creeped back up - higher than it had ever been - and I was 12st. I took up running and swimming and began to concentrate on healthy eating, and the weight stopped creeping, but suddenly lockdown happened.

I stopped going to the gym (they were closed). I was still concentrating on healthy eating, but I was definitely over-consuming even though the food was healthy. I went for long walks, but between walks was entirely sedentary. I weighed myself in May 2020 (three months after my previous weigh-in in February), and I was over 14st, and nearly morbidly obese. I was heart-broken. I felt rage at the unfairness of the situation. I felt as though I was doing things right; I was vegetarian, avoided most fats (desipte craving them all the time), ate a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, went for long walks, and ate a mostly balanced diet - very few processed foods, rarely ate take aways etc.

How on earth had I gained 30lbs in three months?? The would have meant (assuming 1lbs = 3500 calories) I would have had to over-consume by 1,166 kcals every single day. I knew that I hadn't done this; a rough estimate of my average daily calories using MFP showed that I had eaten around 2,000 kcal - exactly what I should have eaten for maintanence (in line with my BMR of 1,500 and 500kcal from my 2-3 hours of walking). I remembered the YEARS of calorie restriction that had only resulted in 14lbs lost, and was horrified to think that this would be my life again - for even longer this time.

I was stumped. How on earth was this possible? I despised my body for betraying me, and raged at the calories-in-calories-out equation that clearly - CLEARLY - didn't work for my body.

I began researching on line, and remembered that when I was slim as a teen I would routinely intuitively and often accidentally fast. I've never been a breakfast person, and for a lot of my teens I was accidentally doing OMAD because I was often late for school and forgot to make time for breakfast or remember my lunch money. Some days, I would stay out hopping from friend to friend and miss dinner because I was so engrossed in a conversation / walk that I would genuinely not be hungry. In fact, I often wasn't hungry at all; not the way I felt later in life, after forcing myself to eat at least three (healthy) meals a day, constantly battling uncontrollable hunger and intense food cravings.

I used to think this was awful for my health - and I'm sure that as a teen it most certainly was - but the more I researched into intermittent fasting, the more it intuitively felt right for my body. I could eat whenever I was hungry until I was full, and whenever I wasn't hungry I didn't have to eat. I rejected the mantra that breakfast was the most important meal of the day (all it ever did for me was make me feel a bit sick while I was eating it, and then be so ravenously hungry that I'd over-consume later in the day once the spike in blood sugar fell), and began to really tune into my own body's hunger signals. It turns out, I'm not actually hungry that often, as long as I eat enough for me to feel full in the first place and limit carbs that cause my blood-sugar to massively spike and fall. The beauty of it is that if I eat until I'm full (with enough protein and fat and fiber), even if I do over-consume in that moment, I am as a conequence fuller for longer - the balance between fasting and feasting feels completely natural, as though it is what my body has always been designed to do. And intense food cravings are for the most part, completely gone. It's hugely helping with binge-eating too; because I'm eating almost exclusively high-fat, low-carb food, I don't get those crazy dips and falls in blood glucose that have historically led me to binge when my blood-sugar dips.

I have finally lost over a stone for the first time in my whole life, and feel incredible. I have ebergy, whenever I'm hungry I eat something that is filling and nutricious, no more spreading 500kcals out across the day, no more limiting to 1100 and feeling like I was shrivelling up and dying. This is something I am managing to sustain.

Discalimer - PLEASE do not fast if your body is still developing; it is likely why I have struggled so much with my weight in adulthood! And even if you are an adult, please listen to your own body and do what feels good for it and helps keep it healthy. Listening and copying what I've done and expecting the same results is like a fish watching an ant climb a tree; you may have very different needs and your body may have different (equally cool) mechanisms to keep you healthy. I just wanted to share my story in case someone out there needed to hear that there are other ways than extreme calorie restriction and constant hunger and mood swings, if this has caused your weight to yo-yo in the past.
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Replies

  • Sand_TIger
    Sand_TIger Posts: 839 Member
    I'm so glad you found what worked for you! It sounds like having the freedom to not be locked down to meals is what is helping your to stay in a deficit at the same time as you reduce cravings and feel better. That's wonderful!
  • nklp
    nklp Posts: 62 Member
    Thank you so much sand_tiger and manderson27! I am so happy!
  • solieco1
    solieco1 Posts: 1,559 Member
    nklp wrote: »
    Hi nexangelus - I definitely am eating at a calorie deficit, that's true! I just have realised that eating a small amount of calories spread throughout the day is much harder on my body than eating a small amount of calories all in one go so I feel full :)

    @nklp well done - whatever it's called it's FINALLY my way as well to get to a healthy weight, feel great and feel like I have found the magic formula for me. I have battled for so many years and yo-yo constantly. I now don't eat after dinner for 14-16 hrs most days. Then I have 2 good and satisfying meals of protein, minimally processed carbs and healthy fats. Yes, of course it's a deficit. It's also conquered my cravings, mood swings (mostly) and frustration.

    Great job in finding YOUR healthy way.
  • ninerbuff
    ninerbuff Posts: 46,184 Member
    Whatever way someone chooses to lose weight, the biggest things you have to make sure of is to get in your RDA's and essentials of macro/micronutrients.

    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

    9285851.png
  • 4Phoenix
    4Phoenix Posts: 229 Member
    edited January 2021
    Yay! You found what is working for you....IF is a great tool to facilitate calorie deficit. Each of us, in order to create a sustainable lifestyle that is balanced and healthy has to individually find what resonates and produces success. Good for you finding your path and wishing you much success!
  • joyanna2016
    joyanna2016 Posts: 324 Member
    I recently discovered IF too. It was as if a light bulb turned on over my head! Truly a revelation!
  • SallyKaPow
    SallyKaPow Posts: 61 Member
    This is a really nice story to read. Its so good to see someone cracking what works for them, particularly after having struggled for so long. Keep it up!
  • dramaqueen45
    dramaqueen45 Posts: 1,010 Member
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.
  • swiftyl
    swiftyl Posts: 37 Member
    I too am in the 'don't eat breakfast club' :) Have done slimming world and other diets in the past and had people tell me 'you must eat breakfast' but it just doesn't work for me. So long before intermittent fasting was a 'thing' I was inadvertantly doing it anyway. I still log all my foods as this also works for me, but like you I also listen to my body, so if I'm hungry I eat, if I'm not I don't - and I'm trying hard to curb any emotional eating too. Really pleased you found something that works for you (especially as lockdown has been and continues to be so tough (UK too). :)
  • chrissyhub
    chrissyhub Posts: 9 Member
    I too have lost weight this way. We should be listening to our bodies not shovelling food in at a particular time! I have also now just started fitness videos to help take the last stone off. I used to love dancing and exercising as a child. it is amazing if you look at your inner child- you often do find your answers.
  • nklp
    nklp Posts: 62 Member
    edited January 2021
    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    ...

    Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I totally agree - I'm not trying to get back anywhere near to where I was as a teen! I used to be absolutely tiny - those shorts were a size 6!!! (Excuse the drunken mess I was at 18)

    dvtbbc8mx41o.png


    This is my current progress with 19lbs lost, I think you are right; I'm aiming for around 35lbs lost - so only 16 more to go!

    r6ichry05zcq.png


  • Ddsb11
    Ddsb11 Posts: 607 Member
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?
  • zyxst
    zyxst Posts: 9,131 Member
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?

    Not a medical professional.

    Having 'extra' weight when you're older helps if you get an illness that causes you to not be hungry, eating makes it worse, or you're vomiting/have diarrhea, that 'extra' weight acts like a back-up of calories to keep your body alive until the illness is over (good or bad).

    Extreme example is my mom, who had lung cancer, and couldn't eat much during chemo. She lost a lot of weight and had she been a 'normal' weight, she would have been hospitalized due to starvation.
  • Ddsb11
    Ddsb11 Posts: 607 Member
    zyxst wrote: »
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?

    Not a medical professional.

    Having 'extra' weight when you're older helps if you get an illness that causes you to not be hungry, eating makes it worse, or you're vomiting/have diarrhea, that 'extra' weight acts like a back-up of calories to keep your body alive until the illness is over (good or bad).

    Extreme example is my mom, who had lung cancer, and couldn't eat much during chemo. She lost a lot of weight and had she been a 'normal' weight, she would have been hospitalized due to starvation.

    Thank you! 🙏🏻😊
  • dramaqueen45
    dramaqueen45 Posts: 1,010 Member
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?

    I'm 53 now. When I was 21 I weighed 117. Losing 55 pounds a few years ago got me down to 125 and I found that brought out a lot of wrinkles in my face and neck. I wasn't even thinking of the health benefits of carrying a little extra weight as mentioned above. My "ideal weight" according to the doctor is anything from 110-140. I definitely think 110 has always been too small for me, even being a small frame person. 117 was fine when I was young and had the elasticity in my skin. Now- 130-135 would be a nice, sustainable healthy weight. 140-145 is a bit too heavy for my small frame IMO. And when I was 125 - like I said- I was a bit too wrinkly, AND it was a bit too low to try to maintain my weight without continued strict restricting and counting. It's all individual- I'm still trying to figure out maintenance, but with the plan of IF I think I may be able to do it this time when I hit my goal!
  • Ddsb11
    Ddsb11 Posts: 607 Member
    edited January 2021
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?

    I'm 53 now. When I was 21 I weighed 117. Losing 55 pounds a few years ago got me down to 125 and I found that brought out a lot of wrinkles in my face and neck. I wasn't even thinking of the health benefits of carrying a little extra weight as mentioned above. My "ideal weight" according to the doctor is anything from 110-140. I definitely think 110 has always been too small for me, even being a small frame person. 117 was fine when I was young and had the elasticity in my skin. Now- 130-135 would be a nice, sustainable healthy weight. 140-145 is a bit too heavy for my small frame IMO. And when I was 125 - like I said- I was a bit too wrinkly, AND it was a bit too low to try to maintain my weight without continued strict restricting and counting. It's all individual- I'm still trying to figure out maintenance, but with the plan of IF I think I may be able to do it this time when I hit my goal!

    So for you it was purely aesthetic. I completely get that! Thanks so much for the insight. Now you got me thinking...

    If, say, I was 117 lbs at 53 years without losing weight, would that make a difference in the way the wrinkles looked or sat on my face? This might be a really good incentive to keep my weight in check in the future if so.
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    msalicia07 wrote: »
    This resonates with me so much. I joined MFP for real in 2014, lost 55 pounds over the course of a year and a half through careful calorie counting, and did an okay job of maintenance until the fall of 2018 when a huge amount of stress hit my life and didn't let up and THEN we all went on lockdown. Someone on Facebook mentioned a book called Fast, Feast, Repeat by Gin Stephens and how much they loved this way of eating, so I ordered it and started reading.

    I, too, remember when I was younger and was effortlessly thin, and I remember that I would accidentally fast for long periods of time. I never ate breakfast and sometimes only ate maybe an orange and some popcorn during mid-day and early afternoon and then ate a normal dinner. I didn't count calories, and I wasn't hungry. I was able to easily maintain a healthy weight back then doing IF, eating intuitively until I was full but fasting from about 6-7 pm until 12-1 the following day.

    So I'm back on that-- I haven't been able to give up sweetener and sugar free coffee creamer yet but I'm trying to wean myself off of it (her book preaches black coffee in the morning if you need coffee). Back in college when I did IF without knowing it I just didn't even drink coffee. I tried that one day and found myself really missing it and watching the clock until I could break my fast. I wasn't even hungry that morning, but just seemed to miss having something besides water. I used to just eat a granola bar in the morning, so it's not like I'm cutting that many calories out in the morning, but now the thought of anything in the morning, especially something so full of sugar just doesn't even sound good at all. After gaining 40 of the 55 pounds back I'm back to calorie counting with IF. I plan to maintain by keeping the IF and eating intuitively. Going for a loss of 30 pounds because at the lowest weight I was a bit too thin (even though it's higher than when I was at my thinnest). Seems that an older person needs to carry a little more weight - even my husband said - don't lose that much this time.

    I’m not there yet, so humor me... but why is that?

    I'm 53 now. When I was 21 I weighed 117. Losing 55 pounds a few years ago got me down to 125 and I found that brought out a lot of wrinkles in my face and neck. I wasn't even thinking of the health benefits of carrying a little extra weight as mentioned above. My "ideal weight" according to the doctor is anything from 110-140. I definitely think 110 has always been too small for me, even being a small frame person. 117 was fine when I was young and had the elasticity in my skin. Now- 130-135 would be a nice, sustainable healthy weight. 140-145 is a bit too heavy for my small frame IMO. And when I was 125 - like I said- I was a bit too wrinkly, AND it was a bit too low to try to maintain my weight without continued strict restricting and counting. It's all individual- I'm still trying to figure out maintenance, but with the plan of IF I think I may be able to do it this time when I hit my goal!

    So for you it was purely aesthetic. I completely get that! Thanks so much for the insight. Now you got me thinking...

    If, say, I was 117 lbs at 53 years without losing weight, would that make a difference in the way the wrinkles looked or sat on my face? This might be a really good incentive to keep my weight in check in the future if so.

    I'm another one who finds that being 7-10lbs heavier than my lowest goal weight actually mean my face looks younger/less lined - I'm 51, 5ft 2, being at my lightest weight of 124lbs for a few years ended up making me look very gaunt and older looking imo (plus friends were always commenting that I had lost too much weight). Its only looking at photos now that I can see I look healthier and more vibrant being a little bit heavier. For so long I just wanted to see a certain number on the scale! thankfully for me it now more about how my clothes look/feel and the amount of muscle I have built that feels more important and the nice bonus of having youthful looks now too :smile: .

    I'm also an IF fan, 16:8 have been using that method of keeping my calories in check for over 6 months - personally it feels pretty easy.

    Congrats OP on finding a method of losing weight that works for you.