My diet routine is pretty boring and mainly consists of copious amounts of salmon and chicken with a “splurge day” that involves a basket of tortilla chips, salsa and tacos.

But with bathing suit season on the horizon and my metabolism slowing to a snail’s pace I thought it might be time to shake up my diet. 

Enter intermittent fasting. 

First, I am not a girl who forgets to eat. My life revolves around planning my next meal so the idea of going without food for an extended period of time was as appealing as getting shot in the neck with a dart.

But after a little research, I learned there are several health benefits to IF including improved heart health, cellular repair (whatever that means), heightened brain function and weight loss.

Thinking that sounded pretty good I decided to give starvation a whirl.

The plan I decided on involves eating only between the hours of noon and 6 p.m., then fasting the other 18 hours.

Daunting, I know.

I managed to make it through my first week with only a few minor bumps. Here are the highlights:

Day 1: 

I bounded out of bed feeling confident in my ability to starve myself. 

I had black coffee (yuck!) and was only slightly bothered to ignore my ginormous bottle of vanilla creamer leering at me from the fridge.

Since my usual breakfast of scrambled eggs and turkey sausage was a no-go, I dove into work and the morning flew by with nary a hunger pain. 

This was going to be a cinch.

I made it through the afternoon, enjoyed dinner with The Husband, but that night things got tough; I wanted a snack. 

So I crawled into bed earlier than normal, pulled the blankets over my head and prayed for deliverance.  

Day 2:

The day was going to be a breeze because I was spending it shopping with my friend Mailyn in Fort Worth.

I wouldn’t even think of food.

We browsed the mall then got a hair-brained idea to try on bathing suits. 

Since I had been fasting for an entire day I figured I would look like a super model in a two-piece made for a 40-something.

I was wrong.

I left the store in disgrace and headed straight to the nearest restaurant.  

That night I even ate a small hunk of carrot cake.

At 8 p.m.

Things clearly weren’t going well.

Day 3:

I woke up early, determined to redeem myself from the carrot cake fiasco.

I poured myself some coffee and hurried to work. 

By 11 a.m. food was the only thing I could think about. I was slightly dizzy and wishing I had the rest of that cake. 

My hunger pains ranged from mildly uncomfortable to severe, but I persevered. 

I waited until noon to eat and got through the rest of the day without a hitch.

I went to bed with a smile. Things were looking up!

Day 4: 

Riding on the success of the previous day, I was feeling Xena Warrior Princess-y.

A lack of food would not bring me down! 

I rolled out of bed, ambled into the kitchen and fought the urge to eat a jelly donut. 

I headed to work and noticed the hunger pains had lessened.

For the first time in my life I (kinda) forgot to eat and didn’t reach for food until 1 p.m.

This was cause for celebration so I danced all the way to the kitchen for lunch.

Update: The rest of the week involved moments of teetering between starvation and feeling strong.

I have no idea how long I can do this. My stick-with-it-ness is sometimes lacking and I don’t mind being called a quitter, but if the scale tilts in my favor, this starvation thing might be for me. 

Sara Vanden Berge is the managing editor of the Empire-Tribune and Glen Rose Reporter. She can be reached at 968-2379, ext. 240.