I stumbled upon an old diet strategy from one of the respected strength coaches Dan John in his book titled Before We Go. He speaks about intermittent fasting and says that to be an effective tool. On a similar note, I have been practicing a casual fasting method since six months. I fast only during Sunday mornings and thus skip my breakfast and have a light lunch. I now don’t find it difficult to control my hunger; whereas, the hunger pangs would turn me off and I would hog a heavy lunch earlier—initial days. Moreover, the few hours of fasting would further, psychologically, trouble me as the hunger would unabatedly continue to remind me of food, food, and food. I would continue to indulge and eat a cup of ice cream. Likewise, whenever I cut down my calories I would develop sweet tooth. Ice cream, cookies, or chocolates would satiate my craving.
Now, however, I have adapted to the fasting and don’t have those cravings for sweets and heavy lunch. I have to see if I can go beyond that and adopt what Dan says—fast for twenty four hours. He also says not to fast on a workout day. Truly so! I believe you are better off fasting on a non-workout day. What if you perform your workout routine burning several calories and then feel hungry? Not the right kind off scenario to fast, peacefully.
Dan also affirms about developing mental focus in the game of strength by adopting this method. He says, “This is the fastest way I know.” Nonetheless, we also have to think about the resistance we would have developed to fast. Perhaps, we would have never tried our hand at this. Also, all of us would never want to expand our comfort zone and fast and feel annoyed. However, this is on the cards, and I will try adopting this dietary challenge very soon.
Importantly, I have to say that I had never dreamt of fasting even for few hours. However, since I turned forty years old I also see that my metabolism is relatively sluggish. A slow metabolic rate means easy fat gain, for I have to look at holistic ways, which can help me to sustain muscle and lose fat. I honestly feel the fasting method, though negligible, I have adopted helps to maintain my muscle and not gain fat. Nevertheless, I have to try fasting for twenty four and see the benefits, for it is a gigantic challenge for me.
PS: Anybody interested in fasting for twenty four hours or beyond one meal, please let me know. If I am answerable to you, chances of succeeding in this challenge is more.
2 thoughts on “Fasting………..”
Found an topic is related to autophagy, which fetched a noble prize this year. This topic explain , why fasting is advisable. Please find the details as below.
This year’s Nobel prize for medicine has gone to a Japanese scientist Dr. Yoshinori Ohsumi for his research on autophagy. Autophagy means to “self eat”. In other words, the process by which the human body eats it own damaged cells and unused proteins. Autophagy is a natural process and also one which occurs in cases of starvation. The failure of autophagy is one of the main reasons for accumulation of damaged cells which eventually leads to various diseases in the body. Autophagy is important to prevent/fight cancer and also plays a vital role in degrading and ‘consuming’ cells infected by bacteria and viruses.
I have to observe here that ancient India had recommended a practice of fasting (Ekadasi) one day in a fortnight. Many of us religiously follow this practice to this day as a penance for spiritual progress without any idea of the biological and therapeutic benefits of this practice. Through this process of fasting induced autophagy, our body repaired its damaged and degenerated cells or used up the proteins of the damaged cells for its survival.
Whenever modern science conquers a frontier in any field, it somehow relates back to a quaint spiritual practice followed in India for generations.
A day in a fortnight spent in prayer and divine contemplation was a tonic for the mind and soul while the practice of fasting ensured that the body would heal and rejuvenate itself.
Clearly, our ancients believed in a process of holistic healing of both the body and the mind. They were able to, quite remarkably, connect the yearning for spiritual progress in a human being with the biological necessity of the human body. One cannot but marvel, and bow our heads with admiration and reverence, at their wisdom and deep scientific understanding of the body and the mind.
Thanks for the valuable comments.