It sometimes bemuses me how complicated alternate day fasting can be for some people to understand. It’s really quite simple. I eat one day and then I don’t eat the next day. Rinse and repeat. Over and over and over.
Actually, to be fair, most people get caught up with the window of fasting. They want to know how many hours I actually fast. Well, for me, it usually works out to 30 hours, roughly from midnight to 6am. But I’m not religious about it. Sometimes my last meal might be at 1am in the morning or my first meal after fasting at 10am. I do what feels right on that particular day. Sometimes on fasting days I tend to sleep lighter and get up earlier. On these days, I might eat at 6am. On other days, I might sleep in and eat later. I do find that I tend to eat up until I go to sleep on feeding days, though, as mentally I’m aware that I’m not going to eat for the next 30 hours, and I enjoy eating – a lot. Some people shop till they drop. I eat till I sleep.
More importantly and interestingly, most of the time, even if I go to bed feeling slightly hungry on fasting days, usually when I wake up in the morning, the feeling of hunger is gone, and I’m in no hurry to eat. It seems that the body manages to refuel itself while sleeping. As I still have fat to burn (17% body fat), I’m presuming that presently my body is burning stored fat while I’m sleeping. I’m not sure whether or not this phenom will continue if I have a lower body fat percentage. This is something I’m looking forward to verifying, provided my weight loss continues and I get to a low enough body fat to test this hypothesis.
From a practical point of view, I can’t imagine anyone needing to reduce their fasting window to anything less than 30 hours as most everyone sleeps at least six hours a night. More likely than not, your fasting window will be longer. In any case, this is absolutely nothing to get all worked up about. Just do what comes naturally. There’s no such thing as fasting too long. To the contrary, I would suspect the longer the better, allowing more time for your body to heal itself.