A Guide to Intermittent Fasting

What is intermittent fasting?

A Guide to Intermittent Fasting
A Guide to Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting (IF) is not a diet, but rather a dieting pattern. In simpler terms: it’s making a conscious decision to skip certain meals on purpose. By fasting and then feasting on purpose, intermittent fasting generally means that you consume your calories during a specific window of the day, and choose not to eat food for a larger window of time.

There are a few different protocols to take advantage of intermittent fasting.

16 – Hour Intermittent Fast

Popularized by Hugh Jackman and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as a fast to trim extra pounds. It is common to fast after dinner to around lunch the following day. Fast for 16 hours each day, for example by only eating between noon and 8pm. I am personally a fan of the 16/8 method, as I find it to be the simplest and the easiest to stick to.

13 – Hour Circadian Rhythm Fast

Based on research of scientist Dr. Satchin Panda. Participants aim to start fasting a close to sunset as possible for at least 13 hours daily

Eat-Stop-Eat

Once or twice a week, don’t eat anything from dinner one day, until dinner the next day (a 24 hour fast).

The 5:2 Diet

During 2 days of the week, eat only about 500–600 calories. A plan that involves eating the recommended calorie intake for 5 days a week but reducing calorie intake to 25% for the remaining 2 days – to 500 calories a day for women and 600 a day for men.

The 23:1 One Meal a Day

Referred to as 23:1, meaning a person spends 23 hours of the day fasting, leaving just 1 hour a day to eat, drink and consume calories. Basically you only eat one meal a day

The Potential Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

Since the body is unable to get its energy from food during fasting, it taps into glucose that is stored in the liver and muscles. This begins around 8 hours after the last meal is consumed. When the stored glucose has been used up, the body then begins to burn fat as a source of energy, which can result in weight loss.

Here are some changes that occur in your body when you fast:

  • Human Growth Hormone (HGH): The levels of growth hormone skyrocket, increasing as much as 5-fold. This has benefits for fat loss and muscle gain, to name a few.
  • Insulin: Insulin sensitivity improves and levels of insulin drop dramatically. Lower insulin levels make stored body fat more accessible
  • Cellular repair: When fasted, your cells initiate cellular repair processes. This includes autophagy, where cells digest and remove old and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside cells
  • Gene expression: There are changes in the function of genes related to longevity and protection against disease

These changes in hormone levels, cell function and gene expression are responsible for the health benefits of intermittent fasting.

As long as you stick to healthy foods, restricting your eating window and fasting from time to time can have some very impressive health benefits. It is an effective way to lose fat and improve metabolic health, while simplifying your life at the same time.

The Benefits of One Meal a Day (OMAD)

One meal a day is a form of intermittent fasting that literally involves eating one meal a day. Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern or dieting cycle where you transition between periods of eating and fasting. The primary aim is to lose weight using an effective method that does not include the shortcomings or failures of other methods.

The Benefits of One Meal a Day
Blake OMAD

OMAD utilizes the two periods of intermittent fasting which are fasting window and feeding window. In one meal a day the fasting window consists of about 22-23 hours of a day while the feeding window is limited to 1-2 hours in a day. Therefore, OMAD pushes intermittent fasting to its maximum capacity.

Within the limited feeding window, you can eat as much as you want but maintain a healthy diet that includes appropriate food groups. One meal a day is also quite flexible and allows a calorie-free light snack during the fasting window.

OMAD might seem extreme to those who are ignorant of its benefits and lifestyle plan. It is the most natural and effective way to lose weight, and stay healthy. Here are some benefits of OMAD:

Efficient Weight Loss

So many people struggle with weight loss because they keep trying methods that produce less result. Most of these weight loss plans come with strict diets and counting calories. Still the effects are short-term and unsatisfactory. One meal a day is an almost effortless way to lose weight. By simply eating less and healthy you shed calories quickly without a struggle.

Your Overall Health is Improved

Eating one meal a day helps to reduce various health risks such as blood pressure, cholesterol level and blood sugar levels. One meal a day helps the body maintain better insulin control.

Saves Time

Most people spend long amounts of time cooking, heating, and eating every day. OMAD lifestyle plan will help you cut down on those hours and find more use for time. Eating once a day guarantees less cooking, heating, and dishwashing time.

Saves Cash

One meal a day is one of the cheapest weight loss plans. It helps you save money by purchasing fewer junk foods and using less gas. Your grocery shopping becomes more cost-effective, and so does your lifestyle.

Increased mental and Physical Productivity

The benefits of one meal a day include higher clarity and concentration levels. It also includes increased energy and productivity than eating frequent times a day. OMAD improves memory, energizes cells and reduces fatigue.

Other benefits of one meal a day include:
  • Improved immune systems
  • Discipline
  • Long-term results

Should It Be A Meeting?

Did you know most office workers spend at least 45% of their week in meetings? Have you ever had a moment at work when you’ve thought, “Does this really call for a meeting?”

If you haven’t, you should start. Because if you’ve ever been in a meeting that didn’t go anywhere, you know how much of a waste of time it can be.

Not only can they be a huge time and productivity suck, they’re also expensive! Add up the hourly wage of everyone attending, and multiply that by the amount of hours you spend together, and you’ll get a quick idea of just how much money your company is losing.

Want fewer meetings at work? Learn how to say no. Not all decisions require a meeting in order to drive next steps, and too many meetings have way too many people to be effective.

Should-it-be-a-meeting
Familiarize yourself with this flowchart before scheduling another meeting (source: https://shoulditbeameeting.com)
Think twice before scheduling a meeting

There are few things that will kill a team’s velocity quicker than meeting overload. So before scheduling your next meeting, ask yourself a few simple questions:

  1. Does this decision require input from more than one other person?
  2. Does the group need to talk about this together, at the same time?
  3. Do you have to wait until you can find a mutual time for everyone to discuss later?

Unless you answered yes to all the above questions, you perhaps don’t need to schedule a meeting to achieve your goals. Here are some replacements to consider:

  • Email
  • Chat
  • Quick phone call
  • Brief in-person conversation
  • Shared document
Should you need a meeting, take advice from Jeff Bezos

When it comes to getting more out of business meetings, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has it down. Jeff Bezos knows how to run a meeting. Here’s how he does It. He follows three simple rules.

Jeff-Bezos-and-Amazon

“Two pizza” teams.

To avoid these time-wasting gatherings and ensure that his schedule is only filled with meetings that are worth his time, Bezos has a “two pizza rule” that helps him to banish unnecessary gatherings from his schedule.

“We try to create teams that are no larger than can be fed by two pizzas,” said Bezos. “We call that the two-pizza team rule.” – Jeff Bezos

If you’ve ever been in a meeting with too many people, you can understand the wisdom in this.

No PowerPoint

Bezos actually banned PowerPoint presentations in favor of memos.

“Somebody for the meeting has prepared a six-page…narratively structured memo. It has real sentences, and topic sentences, and verbs, and nouns–it’s not just bullet points.” “The great memos are written and rewritten, shared with colleagues who are asked to improve the work, set aside for a couple of days, and then edited again with a fresh mind. They simply can’t be done in a day or two.” – Jeff Bezos

None of that means anything if the meeting participants don’t prepare, which is what makes the third rule the best one of all.

Begin Meetings with Silence

Bezos starts each meeting by giving team members a half hour to actually read the prepared memos prior to discussing them.

“We read those memos, silently, during the meeting,” “It’s like a study hall. Everybody sits around the table, and we read silently, for usually about half an hour, however long it takes us to read the document. And then we discuss it.”

“Just like high school kids, executives will bluff their way through the meeting, as if they’ve read the memo,” “Because we’re busy. And so, you’ve got to actually carve out the time for the memo to get read–and that’s what the first half hour of the meeting is for. And then everyone has actually read the memo, they’re not just pretending to have read the memo.” -Jeff Bezos

You can imagine why this is so beneficial. How many times have you made it to an important meeting where, despite your best intentions, you’re simply not as prepared as you’d like to be?

Implementing Bezos’ three simple rules could not only help increase productivity but also make meetings less dreadful and boring. And, let’s face it, nobody truly enjoys PowerPoint anyway.

10 Time Wasters

Time is a very precious resource. The fact is that regardless of how well you manage time, at the end of a day, you will still only have had 24 hours. In one year there are still only 8,760 hours. The key is using your time efficiently and eliminating time wasters from your day. Your attitudes and behaviors effect how you use your time.

By substituting what’s not working for you with a more effective behavior and/or attitude you’re on the road to managing your time.

10 Time wasters

1. Waiting for Inspiration

The work of top creatives isn’t dependent upon motivation or creative inspiration, but rather it follows a consistent pattern and routine. It’s the mastering of daily habits that leads to success, not some mythical spark of creative inspiration.

2. Worrying about what people will say

Most of us worry a little too much about what others think of us. We all want to be liked and appreciated for our many talents, our ferocious intelligence, our good nature, our sparkling personality. But when we give over our power to others and allow that their impressions to become how we perceived, we lose out on who we really are.

Care about people’s approval, and you will always be their prisoner.

Lao Tzu

3. complaining

No one cares to be around a complainer. If you want to start attracting and creating the success you desire, you’ll want to stop complainingComplaining can add to your stress levels and the stress of those around you. The first step is to become aware when you are complaining. One of the techniques I use is: Thought Stopping. This is a technique that many therapists recommend for a variety of issues because it works well. When an undesirable thought enters your head, you literally interrupt it with the mental image of a stop sign or the word “stop!” and move on to a different thought.

4. Trying to please everybody

Trying to please everyone will never bring you the approval and love you seek. You absolutely shouldn’t try to please everyone all the time. It’s just not worth it. Not only will you begin to live your life according to someone else’s standards, but you’ll deplete yourself of any sense of happiness. Saying yes to everyone’s requests means you’re saying no to something else.

5. Comparing yourself

You know you shouldn’t compare yourself to others. Yet, that’s often easier said than done. Job title, income, grades, house, and Facebook likes, you’re not alone. I often find my self doing it too. We typically compare the worst we know of ourselves to the best we presume about others. The best way to get over this is to become intimately aware of your own successes. You can control one life—yours. But when we constantly compare ourselves to others, we waste precious energy focusing on other peoples’ lives rather than our own.

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Theodore Roosevelt

6. Repeating the same mistakes

We feel driven to repeat mistakes from the past in the hopes that this time the situation will work out differently, but it rarely does. To avoid this repetition failure, I suggest the following: Engage in vigorous self-examination. You will have to identify the behaviors you want to change. Understand how your history influences these behaviors.

7. Perfectionism

If you’re a perfectionist, it could be seriously holding you back. Remember, there is nothing wrong with having high standards, but when these standards are too high, they can really get in the way of your work/school, relationships, and enjoyment of life. Because adults with perfectionism are often very critical of themselves, one of the most effective ways to overcome perfectionism is to replace self-critical or perfectionistic thoughts with more realistic and helpful statements. “It’s okay if some people don’t like me. No one is liked by everyone!”

8. Lack of priorities

The wrong priorities lead to bad decisions. Being under pressure because of a lack of priority makes your priorities even fuzzier, choosing the now over what really matters. Take a close look at how you ACTUALLY  spend your time. What are you doing that is moving the needle that needs to move?

Busy isn’t’ a sign of success, it’s a lack of priority.

Chase Jarvis

9. The fear of failure

Many of us are afraid of failing, at least some of the time. But fear of failure (also called “atychiphobia“) is when we allow that fear to stop us doing the things that can move us forward to achieve our goals. I do an exercise called “fear-setting” I learned from Tim Ferriss.

We suffer more in our imagination than in reality.

– Seneca

10. Not living your life

I know it’s easy to say we should just stop worrying and live our livesLiving a life where you’re happier and kinder towards yourself is not just about what you can do. But also about what you are already doing. Understand that your life unfolds as your mind perceives it. Cultivate an internal focus of control. Stop existing at the whim of other people, of tragedy, of uncertainty. Develop your personal view and embrace it, let it guide you.

 

How to Drastically Cut Your Electric Bill

What if I told you, you could reduce your electrical waste, save money, and actually earn cash in the process? Would you do it? A company that I have been using for the past year is making that a reality for Californians That company is called OhmConnect. I will explain how the company works and how you can Cash in on it.

Big energy companies really do not like using less efficient power plants. These less efficient power plants are not cost-effective, and they make it harder for the company to comply with pollution regulations. Due to these facts California’s energy companies are actually willing to pay consumers not to use energy during peak energy demand times.

OhmConnect is a big data company that harnesses information to save energy and make money. In fact their company won the U.S Department of Energy‘s American Data Challenge. This is where they come into the picture. OhmConnect’s algorithms monitor energy use on a minute by minute basis. When energy consumption approaches peak loads (When the less efficient power plants come online), OhmConnect starts taking action.

What OhmConnect does at these peak times are:

OhmConnect

  • Alerts you during peak loads. Notice can come anywhere from one day to five minutes in advance.
  • You participate in “Ohm Hours” by intentionally reducing energy consumption for one hour. This means shutting off lights, TV, dishwasher, dryer, or anything else using power.
  • OhmConnect sells your reduced energy consumption back to the grid who pays OhmConnect for the reduction.
  • OhmConnect retains 20% of the profit and passes 80% of it back to you. The points you earn can then get cashed out through PayPal.

The key to making money through OhmConnect is cutting back on energy consumption during “OhmHours“. When OhmHours go into effect you want to cut back on energy consumption as far as possible from your baseline energy use. This means shutting off lights, TV, dishwasher, dryer, or anything else using power. Hardcore Ohm users will actually turn off the breaker to their house. Or you can do what I do and leave the house to curb any temptation to turn on the TV or something.

How does OhmConnect determine wether or not you have saved energy? They calculate your home’s average over 10 weekdays or 4 weekend days prior to a OhmHour. Your average is your baseline. If you use less energy than your baseline you earn points. Each point is worth one cent. If you reduce energy use more than 20% below your baseline you will earn double points. If you reduce it by more than 40% below your baseline you will earn quadruple points. Just to be clear, using OhmConnect is no side hustle. But if you are a California resident who gets their utilities from PG&E, SCE, and SDG&E, you can definitely make some money for gas in the car, beer in the fridge, or paying down a small bill.

OhmConnect

  • On average you can expect to make 10- 30 points per OhmHour. But there are a few way to get the most out of OhmHour.
  • Connect your smart home devices to OhmConnect: You will earn 300-500 points per device (that’s $3-$5 per device), and OhmConnect will automatically reduce energy consumption for you during OhmHours.
  • Put your refrigerator on a smart plug. One of the biggest energy consumers are refrigerators and freezers.
  • Get on an Ohm Streak. You can earn 25%+ Once you reduce energy within 3 OhmHours in a row, you’re on a streak and your points will increase.

So if you are in California, it makes sense to sign up for OhmConnect.

So my final thought is it’s a great tool to help you become more energy (and financially) conscious. You’re not likely to earn a lot from OhmConnect, but you definitely don’t lose anything by signing up.