What I Learned from My First Experience Fasting

  The Last Supper

The Last Supper

Why should you try fasting? Well my basic calculus on the notion was that I tend to overeat on occasion, so I figured I should eat less as well. The Yin to my Yang. I always focused on weight training ever since I was a kid up through college and into my twenties, but I vowed for 2018 to be the year I give cardio the attention it deserves. I have been trying different techniques to knock down a few pounds, and this fasting idea gets a lot of traction online. So, I figured I should see what the fuss is all about and post my personal findings.  

First off, if you are capable of basic math, you won’t need an app to track how long before you can get back to eating junk food again. I started my fast on Saturday after dinner which was around 7:00 pm. My plan was to not eat breakfast and lunch and when dinner rolled around, I would get back to my typical schedule. Sunday morning I woke up and passed on the sugar heavy pancake breakfast and opted for a cup of coffee, black. My body was used to eating breakfast fairly early in the day and I found myself feeling minor hunger around 9:00 am. I chugged a couple cups of water and the hunger passed. The rest of the day, I occasionally felt like grabbing an apple or a quick snack, but I never really felt hunger the rest of the day.

Coffee Mountain.JPG

Second off, I felt much more alert than is typical. I expected to be drained of energy or lacking focus, but I found the opposite to be true. Maybe this is some ancient trait for life in the jungle where our bodies would go into starvation mode. In this mode mankind was more focused and driven in their search for food. I found my energy levels significantly higher than I do on days when I eat a big meal. I rode my exercise bike for a while and lifted weights. I put about 15 miles on the bike which is actually more than a typical day, so lack of food didn’t slow me down. If you have decent willpower and some discipline, the act of fasting should not be too challenging.

This fasting has taught me that most of the times that I feel hunger, I’m just thirsty. Carrying water around at all times is a great way to stop impulse snacking. Most of us don’t need as much food as we think. Yet we don’t get enough hydration. If you are out running errands, you likely will grab a bottle of water that is in the most eye catching and convenient spots. The marketing men know where you will be when your eyes begin to wonder and will get you to pay $1.79 for “Smart” water. That comes out to about $11.45 a gallon. No one is allowed to complain about the price of gas if they get bottled water while they wait for their tank to fill up. More importantly, plastic is toxic for your body and for the environment. So go out and buy a steel water bottle if you haven’t already. It will save you money and protect you from the harmful effects of BPA. This is one of the quickest and easiest ways for anyone to start living a cleaner and healthier life.

People freak out when you buck societal norms. They simply can’t accept that you would do something so radical as to skip breakfast. Gasp! My personal take on this is when they see someone doing something challenging and atypical, it forces them to reevaluate their own life decisions and this makes them uncomfortable. Now when I am grocery shopping or walking around town, I tend to notice what the average person looks like. I used to describe the average person as mediocre, but society is really letting itself go so mediocre might be a little to polite. We are poisoning ourselves with a sedentary lifestyle and junk food and drink. If you want to live an awesome life, then be ready to buck a few societal norms. Because the norm, is not working well for the average person. If you are reading this, then you are not mediocre and are actively striving for an awesome life. Where you are on that path if your own journey and everyone is at different levels.

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” – Ernest Hemingway

Bottom line: I would definitely recommend everyone give this a shot and see how it affects them. I am going to do it again next Sunday and I will likely update this post with the details of a second day fasting. This may even become my own little Sunday ritual where that becomes a day of resetting and gearing up for the start of a new week. Anyway, let me know in the comments below what your thoughts are on the matter and any results you may have if you have tried this out before. Also follow me on Twitter and respond to my thread there with your results.