#41 Health Blog – Why Fasting Isn’t Starving

Good Morning!

I’ll be fasting all day today.  That will make it 33 hours from yesterday at 11pm until tomorrow morning at 8am. 

I’m testing out every-other-day fasting routine to see how it feels and works for me. Testing things out is how you figure out what works and doesn’t work for you and sometimes the process sucks.

You typically want to stop eating at least 3 hours before sleep time. I chose 4pm to keep a tighter eating window and 8pm max.  This will yield a 36-40 hour fast. It’s not that much different than the 48-hour fast, but it allows me to eat more frequently instead of just one meal every two days.  I think this might be the important difference because I don’t have a gallbladder, which is essential for properly digesting a larger amount of food in one sitting. With every-other-day fasting, I can get in a second meal to spread the digestive load.

I missed the 8 pm cut off time by 3 hours instead of just by 1 yesterday because I didn’t want to give up on trying to beat a level at Dr. Mario during the stream, and the stream ran late.

I was going to try three 48 hour fasts this week, but I don’t want to push it too hard right now.

I have a lot of mental work to do getting into this fasting focused lifestyle.

One of the biggest marketing ploys we’ve been subjected to is from the food industry telling us that we need to eat every single day. 

Well, the truth is you don’t.

Even if you have you have a single digit body fat percentage, the chances of death from not eating for a day or two is very unlikely.  There would have to be some very extreme circumstances for this to happen.

Fasting is difficult because it comes with the feeling of insecurity that you could die if you don’t eat. This feeling is pronounced quite a bit more in individuals who eat lots of carbs like bread, alcohols, and fruit on daily basis, like me at the moment; I do really enjoy pizza and bbq and beer…

While it’s true that you could in fact die when fasting longer term when your fat reserves are extremely low, it’s simply not true when you’re a fatass like me.

I try to rationalize it like this:

At a near 350 lbs and just over 5’-10” tall, I could easily be 200 lbs. 

So I figure I have 20 lbs of extra water at least. 

That leaves me with at least 130 lbs of fat and extra tissues, like skin, that can be used as energy.

If we use standard 3500 calories as the amount of energy per pound of fat, 130×3500=455000 calories of stored energy.

If 2200 calories is the average daily requirement to maintain weight, 455000/2200=206.81 days.

I have 207 days worth of energy.

That’s over 6 months !!

Granted, these numbers are not exact and vary quite a lot on an individual basis. It’s just a quick way to visualize that energy is plenty and fasting is safe.

I’m not going to starve to death if I don’t eat, even for a month or more. This is why fasting isn’t starving.

What I do need though, is salt-water and mental toughness.

Progress

As expected, I gained about 5 lbs worth of water and food mass back after refeeding.  I weight myself on the same scale at my gym. So from 349 lbs on Wednesday down to 339 lbs on Friday and then settling at 344.5 lbs on Monday got me down 4.5 lbs.

Not too bad at all.

I can’t wait to see what the numbers are on Wednesday after today’s fast. I’m not expecting more than 2-3 lb drop, but let’s see what happens.

At The Gym

Yesterday was a chest and back day today. Here’s what we did.

  • TRX Chest Press, 3 x 15, body weight to warm up.
  • Inclined Single Arm Chest Press, 3 x 12, with fat grips, progressive 25lbs, 30lbs, 35lbs.
  • Single Arm Dumbbell Row On Flat Bench, 3 x 15, with fat grips, 45 lbs.
  • Single Arm Lat Pulldowns, 3 x 15 each side, 35lbs.
  • Straight Arm Row, 3 x 12, 70lbs.

The Next Meal

I have some broccoli in the fridge that I need to eat. I think that fried up with some thin cut beef, carrots, and some fresh green onions and garlic. Add in a bit of olive oil, fish and soy sauce, and a bit of honey and a splash of water…

I’m sold! Beef and broccoli it is. Here’s the recipe I like to use.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

-Karsy

P.S. If you enjoy reading my articles and posts you can get on the email list if you haven’t already and I’d love it if you give my Facebook page and post a like and please share it with your friends.

P.P.S If you’re wondering what this fasting stuff is all about an want to get read up on it, check out “The Complete Guide To Fasting” by Dr. Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore.*

Disclaimer:
I am not a medical professional and I don’t claim to be.  Any health-related things that I write or talk about in my blogs, emails or how ever else you get the information from me should NOT be taken as medical advice. Make sure you check with your health-care provider that whatever it is that you want to do, is safe for you.  Any health-related information is intended for entertainment purposes only. Use at your own risk.

#39 Health Blog – The Fast Is Complete

Good Morning!

I want to write the health blog posts later on in the day after my gym session so that the progress and activity information is current for post the next morning.

Expect to see Health Blogs on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

I completed the full 48 hours of the fast. I think it was actually around 51ish hours or so, but who’s counting.

The first day wasn’t too bad. I kept myself busy most of the day, took a nap in the afternoon, and then the live stream kept my mind off eating for the most part. I wasn’t even really hungry by the time I went to sleep.

Second day, Oh boy. I’ll call that day, pee day. I must have gone to the bathroom three to four times per hour. One of the effects of having low insulin level and not being bombarded by reactive foods, is the body starts to shed water like crazy.

The second day I experienced almost near constant mental hunger, with a few actual stomach rumbles here and there, but other than that, I was thinking about food things one after another.

Coffee plus work in the morning sure helped with passing the time and not thinking about food and the last hour of the morning I spent in a bit of pain while my RMT worked way on my back and legs. For a couple hours afterwards I didn’t really care about much, let alone thinking about food. Endorphins are super powerful to say the least.

Working in the afternoon and evening was almost impossible, scrolling through Facebook was almost torture with people posting pictures of their delicious looking food, and even trying to watch TV was difficult because food is everywhere, even animated food looked good.

I made it to bedtime despite having opened the fridge to look at the steaks for the refeed meal more than once.

I should have meditated. Next time I will for sure.

This morning’s planned breakfast of steak and eggs, brussels sprouts, olives, pickles, coffee, and water, turned out very, very tasty. I finished eating just before 8 am as I wanted to get refeed meal in with at least four hours of digestion time before the gym so that I’d have some blood available for the muscles.

Progress

Well, The number speaks for itself. I fasted for 48 hours and 10 lbs came off.

Yep, most of this was water and some nasty bits hanging around in the bowels no doubt, but probably 1-2 lbs of that was probably fat.

I weighed myself at the gym, typed it into the tracking app and saw the number.

I immediately went back to the scale to verify that I hadn’t screwed up. My trainer saw me going back to the scale and was wondering if something was wrong because I looked concerned.

He later mentioned that he immediately noticed that I had lost weight in my face when I walked in to the gym. I should have taken some pictures of myself . ugh.

So yeah, fasting is no joke. It’s not a fad, it just works.

I’m expecting to regain about half of this weight back after eating again, which is the normal response after fasting.

If nothing is going on this weekend, I will probably fast again, starting Saturday morning to Monday morning. We’ll see how things pan out.

At The Gym

Gym Session was great. It’s usually great. Shoulders and arms today.

Warm-up,  walking on the treadmill, 10 minutes, 5% incline and 2.8-3.5 MPH. This is my usual warm up. After about 5 minutes, my heart rate is around 140 bpm and I keep it around that for the last 5 minutes.

I stretch quite a bit before I start my session, here’s what I did using a stretching machine: Lower and Upper Back, Hamstrings, Hip Flexors, and Quadriceps.

I stretched my calves out next by elevating the front of my foot and leaning forward. I also hung my heels off a raised platform and lowered them using body weight with my feet together, and then shoulder width apart.

Using a green resistance band strung up overhead on a machine and the free end around my wrist, using various positions I stretched my shoulders, lats, upper back, traps, and pecs, biceps and triceps. Every position is held 15-30 seconds.

Here’s the workout my trainer planned for today.

  • Stacked Motions: side raise, iron cross, front raise and then reverse order, 3 x 12, 5 lb kettlebells each hand. The burn and pump on this movement is INSANE, even at 5 lbs.
  • Single Arm Shoulder Press, 3 x 12 each, 25 lbs.
  • Single Arm Tricep Extension using cable stack, 3 x 12 each, 30lbs.
  • Single Arm Dumbbell Curls, 2 x 15 each, 25 lbs.
  • Single Arm Hammer Curls, 1 x 15 each, 25 lbs.

As you can see we’ve been doing a lot of one-handed movements so that the core engaged in every single movement. This might not seem like much, but every repetition is a also stability movement in keeping proper form and this is where the volume of core training is expanded. Keeping the proper form is always key with weight training.

You might think that the amount of mass that I’m moving isn’t a lot. Instead of using a heavier weight, we’re using acceleration to our advantage on the positive and then a slow return on the negative. If you know anything about physics, you’ll know when acceleration is greater the mass can be reduced while maintaining the overall energy expenditure, which is one of the main goals of doing this type of training, and protects my weaker joints from being hyperextended.

The Next Meal

I have some left over steak and some chicken breasts along with some fresh baked buns I have to dispose of; Sandwiches I think are in order. I have about a kilogram and a half of fresh peeled organic carrots to eat up along with some avocados.

I might even have to make a lemon pie to use up my lemons, black berries, and raspberries.

Fresh food is where it’s at and is one of the best things to make time for in life.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

-Karsy

P.S. If you enjoy reading my articles and posts you can get on the email list if you haven’t already and I’d love it if you give my Facebook page and post a like and please share it with your friends.

P.P.S If you’re wondering what this fasting stuff is all about an want to get read up on it, check out “The Complete Guide To Fasting” by Dr. Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore.*

Disclaimer:
I am not a medical professional and I don’t claim to be.  Any health-related things that I write or talk about in my blogs, emails or how ever else you get the information from me should NOT be taken as medical advice. Make sure you check with your health-care provider that whatever it is that you want to do, is safe for you.  Any health-related information is intended for entertainment purposes only. Use at your own risk.

#37 Health Blog – The Fast Continues

Good Morning!

Today is the 24 to 48 hour leg of the fasting session.

I was a bit groggy when I woke this morning, as expected.  My old friend, coffee will help me out.

All I can say right now is that being able to still have coffee while fasting, even if it’s plain, helps set the day off on the right food.  I don’t need it of course, but it sure makes the morning nice.

I don’t ususally have many issues with fasting, but because the past few weeks has been a food-free-for-all, I expected that the sugar cravings were going to be strong.

I think it’s good for me to experience what genuine hunger feels like again compared to what sugar withdrawl feels like, so that I know the difference.  The lines can get blurred pretty easily.

Genuine hunger usually has a physical sensation to it, whereas sugar withdrawal has a sense of insecurity.  What I mean by insecurity is that it changes the way you think and prioritize what you’re doing in so far that if you don’t eat, you think you might die. That feeling creates a sense of urgency and you feel like you’re going to die, the stress hormones start to do their thing.

The worst part is that it’s not even a real genuine hunger pang. I think I might have felt a rumble or two, but other than that there is nothing except a constant bombardment of mental hunger.

What makes this initial process worse, is every other thought I have is about food.

I know what you’re thinking: “But Karsy, you’re a foodie: that means you always think about food”. 

You’re not wrong, I do have day-dreams about food quite often.

Progress

I measure my weight at the gym when I’m there, usually Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. My weight as of Wednesday, May 22nd,  is 349 lbs. Below is a screen shot of the graph since I stared in October 2017.

This is what struggling with poor insulin sensitivity looks like by the numbers. Every time I look at that graph and see the line rise going from left to right I don’t see failure, I see evidence.  I know what was happening at those points in time.  It’s not just bad food choices, it’s understanding why I made those particular food choices when I know that certain foods don’t do well with me.

Just like how controlling my time is important, so controlling my insulin levels.  When insulin stays low, my body has time to rest and rebuild and use up some of that stored energy.

At The Gym

Gym session yesterday was great. I had lots of energy from the breakfast I ate. Here’s what I did.

  • Warm-up,  walking on the treadmill, 10 minutes, 5% incline and 2.8-3.5 MPH.
  • Single Leg Extensions, 3 sets of 12, 35 lbs.
  • Hamstring Curl, 3 sets of 12, 45 lbs.
  • TRX Squats, 3 sets of 15, body weight.
  • Banded Dead Lift, 3 sets of 12, 50 lbs.
  • Cable Squat Twists, 2 sets of 15 each direction, 40 lbs.
  • Ab Rotation, 3 sets of 15 each direction, Ultra-Heavy (grey) band.

Every session I am noticing that certain movements are getting a lot easier.

The Next Meal

I’m looking forward tomorrow morning. I bought two steaks yesterday when I picked up my water. I have a couple kg of carrots that I can make a pretty big dent in and some left over chicken, brussels sprouts, and that curd cheese from Quebec.  It’s going to be good.

I have a massage booked for later this morning to get my muscles taken care of.  It’s been far too long.

Thanks for joining me on my health journey!

Love to hear from you in the comments.

-Karsy

Disclaimer:
I am not a medical professional and I don’t claim to be.  Any health-related things that I write or talk about in my blogs, emails or how ever else you get the information from me should NOT be taken as medical advice. Make sure you check with your health-care provider that whatever it is that you want to do, is safe for you.  Any health-related information is intended for entertainment purposes only. Use at your own risk.

#35 Health Blog – Fasting Is The New Low-Fat

Good Morning!

Fasting is the new low-fat diet, except it’s cheaper, easier, and it tastes better. But the kicker is that it’s not new at all.  It’s been used for thousands of years.

Why fasting?

Oh man, what a loaded question.

I’ve decided to start a regular fasting regimen because it is way easier figure out what not to eat than what to eat, which is nothing. It just makes sense to me. If the body is designed to store excess energy as fat for times when food is scarce (common knowledge), make the food scarce to use the stored energy. I have quite a bit of stored energy, so I should be good to go.

I’ve decided to do 48-hour fasts, starting after breakfast this morning and then refeeding at breakfast time on Friday.

The reason I’ve chosen to do 48-hour fasts is because I have training Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at noon. Eating a breakfast on training days is beneficial for performance in my experience, otherwise I’d probably fast as long as I could.

I haven’t decided what to do on the weekends yet.  I might eat, I might do a 72-hour fast until Monday at breakfast time, I dunno.  It depends on my energy level and how I feel.

The only thing I get to consume is plain coffee and water.  My favorite water is Evian.  For good measure I’m also going to add some salt and “no salt” to the water to keep my electrolytes up and the dizziness away.  I learned this the hard way the first time around. Oh boy.

If this is the first time you’ve herd of fasting for weight loss or other health reasons and want to learn more, I suggest picking up the book “The Complete Guide To Fasting” by Jimmy Moore and Dr. Jason Fung.

The link below will take you to amazon where you a pickup a copy for yourself.

I’m going to start posting these “Health Blogs” on a regular basis so that you can keep up my progress, keep me honest and maybe pick up some useful information along the way.

You can expect to read how I’m feeling, what I’m going to eat for refeed meals, what I’m doing for my workouts, how much I sleep, the stuff I’ve learned about the keto diet and fasting, and of course, my progress.

This morning’s breakfast: Bacon, Eggs, Chicken, Brussels Sprouts, Espresso Americano. Yum.

Have a great day!

-Karsy

Disclaimer:
I am not a medical professional and I don’t claim to be.  Any health-related things that I write or talk about in my blogs, emails or how ever else you get the information from me should NOT be taken as medical advice. Make sure you check with your health-care provider that whatever it is that you want to do, is safe for you.  Any health-related information is intended for entertainment purposes only. Use at your own risk.

#27 Writing Helps Me Deal

Good Morning.

Yesterday after returning home from the gym I was in a bit of a funk.

Here’s what happened.

My trainer had me doing incline offset wide grip dumbbell chest press. Nothing too crazy, I think it was maybe a 25 or 30lb weight, but it being offset and wide grip this will work many more muscles to keep the proper form. 

As I was finishing the first set I could feel, what I can only describe as static building in my head, getting louder and louder until it seemed like the world was starting to cave in on itself.  So weird. 

This has happened before, but this time was much worse. I wasn’t any more dizzy than normal, it just felt really strange.

I don’t think I’ve ever felt faint before, but if that is what it feels like: man does that ever suck.

I had to stop. I couldn’t do it.

My shoulders and neck have been feeling stiff lately so at the time I thought maybe it’s just a pinched nerve or a small blood flow issue or whatever so I’ll stretch, have some water. The trainer changed up the rest of the exercises to standing movements for the rest of the hour.

Not being able to do something because I physically can’t and add the fact that my body has a death-grip on fat right now makes me feel like a worthless piece of garbage, hence the funk.

At home, I sit down at the computer and start searching for answer in an effort to understand why my body hates me and the internet returns diagnosis: feeling faint, or about to pass out, blackout, white out.

Don’t worry, I already have a doctor’s appointment scheduled for this morning anyways so I’ll be sure to inquire.

Not feeling satisfied with what I read, I start writing.  Why not, it might be worth reading I thought. This is the first line I wrote yesterday:

“Feeling discouraged and have pretty bad case of the fuck-its right now, so I’m just going to write down some shit until I snap the fuck out of this self-destructive funk I’m currently in.”

I keep writing.

What I wrote is a lot more personal that I care to share with the entire world, but I wanted to share that particular passage because it speaks about just getting the thoughts out, weather just speaking or writing about what we have going upstairs.

I kept on writing until I started to feel better in general because I know that how I felt in the moment is not how I was going to feel in an hour.

After about five-hundred words I stopped writing and then carried on with the rest of my day.

I reread it this morning and was inspired to share it on the blog in hopes that it might be something that someone needs to hear.

I chose to write, but you can talk to someone, record a video or a voice note, make a post on social media or however else you want to let it out, get it out. Reflect on it. Understand that what you might feel in the moment is not what you’re going to feel forever.

There is blue skies today.

-Karsy