December books, habits, and my experience with IF

I finished 8 books, one of them through audiobook when we were in Miniloc. Not all of them were life changing but 2 that really stood out.

The promise land by Barack Obama (5/5): this is an unexpectedly great book! Very long, 27+ hrs of listening that I finished in a week time. I didn’t expect to like it as much as I did as I’m generally not interested in politics. But Obama’s writing is excellent! I learned a lot of how hard it is to be in his role as president, as husband, and as a father that wants to be in his daughters life despite the hectic work schedule. His writing is concise, deliberate and thoughtful. I really enjoyed listening it as he narrated. I’m looking forward to the second volume. After learning about his perspective, I’m about to listen to Michelle’s.

The nightingale by Kristin Hannah (5/5): I had this book for months and hesitated to start as it’s over 500 pages and it’s about WWII. Yet, once I started it, I finished in few day as I got absorbed to the story, to the characters, and some tears were shed which rarely happens to me. It’s highly rated for many days and I get it now. Highly recommended. A book about being brave, do the right thing, family, love, and most importantly, asks the reader the question: how far would you go to help others? would you risk your life or even your kids life?

Leaders eat last by Simon Sinek (3/5): I started this book few months ago and finally finished it. It takes a while to get into it as it’s a collection of stories about what means to be a real leader and how to create a healthy caring organisation.

Magical journey by Katrina Kenison (4/5): while I loved all Katrina’s other books, I found this one to be a bit too gray or negative. She shares her thoughts on her 50s, with both kids out of the home, her seek for her new role in life. While realistic and insightful, it didn’t paint a hopeful future for me. I think I can make mine brighter.

On Being 40 (ish) (2/5): The promise of this book sounded interesting, different views of women being in their 40s. Somehow I couldn’t feel related.

Period repair manual (3/5): I wanted to learn more about hormonal changes over the cycle, how they affect other aspects of physical and emotional wellbeing. This book gives a good overview. But what I found much more useful is Hormonology app. It almost 100% describes my symptoms in term of energy level, mental health, food craving, and physical symptoms. I highly recommend the app if you also wonder why some days your energy level is down or you feel blue.

A chinese book about parenting which I didn’t like so much as the mother kept bragging about her daughter’s success while she went for the unconventional route.

There are no grown ups by Pamela Druckerman (1/5): while I loved her previous books, this one was very disappointing. Other than the chapter of her husband’s 40 years old wish list (three some) that was amusing, the rest was plain and boring.

Habits tracked

  • Steps (daily avg): 20400 (19700 Nov)
  • Screen time (daily avg): 26 min (34 Nov)
  • Work hours (daily avg): 7 hrs (6 Nov)
  • Miles run: 158 miles (141 Oct)
  • Yoga: 20 sessions (26 Nov)
  • Sleep (daily avg): 7.2 hrs (7.8 Nov)
  • Mood rating: 4.1/5 (3.6 Nov)

My experience with intermittent fasting

I started gradually increase IF from 14 hrs to 16 hrs in mid-November, then continued in December. In December, I reached 16 hrs or 25 days out of 31, 4 of those days while we were on vacation. I use ZERO to track the timing. When I first started, I had some negative side effects such as headache or brain fog, probably lasting for 10 days when I first started doing 16 hrs. Sometimes the headache gets worse after I have my first meal. I tried a couple of things to mitigate it like drinking more water during fasting, have smaller first meal, add apple cider vinegar in water 30 min before first meal. At the end, it really comes down to time, to let the body adjust. Most of the days, I don’t really feel physical hunger during fast, in those days that I didn’t sleep well and felt the need to eat, I ate. But otherwise, it wasn’t as hard as i thought.

My eating window has settled to 10am-6pm. I still eat 3 main meals a day during the eating window. So for me IF is for its health benefits, as opposed to many to maintain weight. My weight hasn’t changed much over the last 20 years, so that’s not an issue for me. But giving all the science on ageing on the benefits of IF, I want to adopt it as part of my healthy life style.

I can’t say I’ve experienced much benefits of IF yet. Some expected ones include less bloating overall as it let the GI to rest for a longer period, restful sleep as I usually finish eating 3 hrs before sleeping, and overall less craving.

Q: Have you tried IF? What has been your experience?

One thought on “December books, habits, and my experience with IF

  1. Great book recommendations! I actually have on my someday/maybe list – “Coco’d book lists” to remind myself to check your book posts when choosing books! Hahaha!

    I’m just starting a book I got for Christmas about IF. It’s called Fast. feast. repeat. I want to commit to trying IF for at least 4 weeks and see if I like it. I indulged probably too much over the holidays snd I feel kind of yucky/not my best right now. I also didn’t exercise as I normally do either, so the combo has left me feeling…. squishy. Ugh. Hahahahaha. We are leaving for Disney world this morning (!) but when we get back next week I want to really get back on track and I think will be a great time to start IF. I’ll be reaching out to you with questions I’m sure!


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