Disqus for Where Are My Knees

The 5:2 Diet – one year on

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

The following post is brought to you by the lovely Becca who has written posts for us previously. You can check out her blog here: Friendly Film Fan and I'm sure she would be happy to chat about the 5:2 plan over on twitter.

Almost a year ago I sent in a post about this ‘revolutionary’ diet that I had pretty much fallen in love with after just two weeks. It has now been 48 weeks and I have no plans to ever stop it.

Since I was a teenager I have been unhappy with my weight, looks, hair… if it was superficial I hated it about myself. Previously I had minor success with short term weight loss, soup diets and the like, and I managed a good year of being small with concentrated diet and exercise.

These small successes were in vain however as I possess very little will power. VERY little. I manage six months before I get bored or lazy or hungry.

So when I found out about my friends amazing weight loss, as I talked about in my last post, the 5:2 diet seemed like a good one to at least try. Almost 12 months later I have already beaten my record on both weight loss and sustainability. I even managed to carry on over Christmas…

…Okay so I didn’t manage both days over Christmas but I at least felt the need for one day. Which is why I think I have been converted in my thinking for good; I physically felt the need for a 500 day. Christmas is a time when we excuse over-indulgence with those amazing three words ‘Tis the season’. So when I was nearing a full week passing without my having a 500 day I felt heavier than I ever have done at Christmas time. The day after I had a low calorie day I felt sharper, hungry for normal food, and more keen to get off the sofa and out in the fresh air.

Now I’m not saying this diet isn’t hard. I have days when I give up completely and consume my weight in chocolate. I also do not spend the calories on my five days ‘off’ particularly wisely – if I did I would be able to go down to a 6:1 ratio. Unfortunately my lack of sustainable willpower means I doubt I will be able to do this as I go a bit crazy on the biscuits or bread sometimes.

Back to the positives. Within about six months of this diet I was down to my ideal-ish weight, losing about a stone. This has fluctuated slightly, depending on the amount of alcohol I consume or baking I do, but I have a steady base weight which I am more than happy with.

I have no scientific proof of my blood glucose levels reducing or whether or not I have staved off Alzheimer’s, a couple of the reasons why I wanted to try it in the first place, which is a shame. I hope I am healthier in body and mind physically, I definitely feel it, and it would be an added bonus to the weight loss and confidence boost I have.

All through this I have been calling 5:2 a ‘diet’, but to me it is now normality. My consumer behaviour on my fasting days generally consists of drinking a couple of mugs of tea in the morning, a slim-a-soup mid-afternoon to combat the empty feeling I get, a zero calorie drink if I feel like I need an energy boost, and then a dinner of veggies and protein with some carbs.

This is the pattern I found works best for me. A lot of people split their calories across one big one small meal per day, but I find I get hungry if I eat something solid in the day and then my evening meal is completely unsatisfactory and I go to bed grumpy.

I have also managed to work out filling meals are possible under 400 calories, the key is less carbs more protein. Or couscous. Couscous and roasted veg is my default meal on a 500 day because you can have a lot for relatively few calories.

Sometimes I cheat and have 100/200 calories over my allotted number, but then what is life if we play by the rules 100% of the time? I am in the healthy BMI range and can fit into a size 12 with some room to spare for extra pizza slices on occasion. More than that, I’m happy.

If anyone out there has had the same success as I have, or been on this diet for longer, I would love to hear your thoughts. And if I’ve managed to inspire anyone out there to give this one a go, without using the lighter life version that Gemma has, then good luck and keep in touch!


  1. I'm so glad this was posted! I have literally just made the decision to give this way of eating a try, it seems to suit my lifestyle (and indeed anyone in a fairly sedentary job - my mum tried it but gave up as she has a very active role in a school!). I'm hoping I can keep it up for at least a year too! x

  2. so pleased you stuck to it and it worked for you , i need something like this for me x

  3. Wow I don't think I have ever stuck to a diet that long. Well done. I keep trying to diet but never actually stick to it. I love my food too much x

  4. I love hearing success stories of losing weight and lifestyle changes. A little over a year ago I really started to pay attention to what I put into my body, making strong efforts to eat clean. Not only have I lost weight, but my skin's clarity has improved and I have felt more energized and alert. It's a win-win situation!

    Bob Hudson @ Oval Earth

  5. New Diet Taps into Innovative Concept to Help Dieters Get Rid Of 12-23 Pounds within Just 21 Days!