I am totally confused. Over the last 24 hours I have discredited a lot of my preconceived ideas about food, energy and lifting heavy weights.
Last time I fasted there was no workout. I reported that my energy levels seemed fine and that adding a workout to the mix shouldn’t be a problem.
So me being me, decided that I would try to fast for 24 hours and do my heaviest workout of the week between hours 22 and 23! That way I would be confronting all of my doubts and realise what was possible (or not so possible) without eating.
This time I started my fast at 4pm. First time around I started at 7pm and thought that if I started earlier then I could finish earlier. Even though it is still 24 hours most of the challenge is mental.
Getting started is the easy part. Basically I didn’t have dinner and went to bed after having a cup of tea. Add 7 hours of sleep and I’m past the half way mark.
Being at work, and being busy at work, made life easier. I know that when I’m not busy on weekends, or when there is downtime at work, my first thought is food. Not that I’m hungry but is gives me something to do. This is just a habit and can either be kept or broken. And with short, intermittent fasting, this is an easy habit to bust.
To be honest with you, second time around this was easier. I knew what I was going to feel like (no different really) and I knew that I would be having cups of tea and coffee instead of food. And I knew that I wasn’t really going to be hungry, because I have decided that being hungry is a mindset. If you can control your thoughts about food and hunger you will master weight control.
If you can control your thoughts about food and hunger you will master weight control.
That’s not a typo or editorial mistake. Read it again.
I’m sure that if you read Eat Stop Eat and give short term fasting a go, you will change the way you think about food, hunger and your weight in less than two days. That’s a pretty big call, but when you try this you will learn so much about yourself and what eating habits and triggers you have and how easily they can be changed.
So back to my workout. At the moment I am working towards maximal strength gains with my resistance training. This means I am doing three week micro cycles. Each week gets harder and heavier with the third week being the maximum effort before changing exercises. Without going into heaps of detail, my Wednesday workout is the toughest. It is a lower body workout and starts with deadlifts.
Before I decided to fast for this period, I had already planned out what weight i would be lifting based on the previous 4 or 5 weeks of training. With the deadlifts I was going to work up to a maximum set (aiming for more that 3 reps) with the bar set to 170 kilograms (375lbs). Now this isn’t a world beating deadlift, but it is reasonable considering that my current body weight is about 72 kilos (160lbs).
I must admit that leading up to the workout I had images of myself passing out, flaking it and not having the energy and power to get through the workout. But this was all in my mind and I actually had normally energy levels and smashed the whole workout. Deadlifts went for 5 reps @ 170 kilos, followed by weighted walking lunges, single leg weighted back extensions and a killer core circuit.
So why do I have the same amount of energy and strength I would normally possess after not eating for 24 (well 22 hours)? Why do I feel ‘weak’ if I haven’t ‘eaten enough’ during the day? A lot of it has to do with the incredibly powerful grey matter that sits between my ears. After doing two fasts, I am going to read the book again, this time with a better understanding of what happens physiologically and psychologically to better understand the philosophy behind fasting for fat loss.
This is to date the longest post I have written, but that is because I am blown away with this method. It is not something that I would have tried or recommended not having read Eat Stop Eat.
Let me sum it up like this:
- Fasting is by far the simplest ‘dieting’ method I know of
- You will learn more about yourself and your eating habits in 24 hours than you would otherwise in months or years.
- You can train heavy and hard at the end of a 24 hr fast with great results.
- Your brain really does control your body.
Tagged as: 24 Hours, Busy At Work, Coffee, Cup Of Tea, Doubts, Downtime, Eating Habits, Energy Levels, First Thought, Food Energy, Habit, Heavy Weights, Hours Of Sleep, Hunger, Intermittent Fasting, Last Time, Mindset, Mistake, Preconceived Ideas, Second Time, Sleep, Tea And Coffee, Tea Coffee, Typo, workout