So I completed my Vegan August Challenge and liked it so much I have decided to keep it going through September. For this month I am adding Intermittent Fasting. /Intermittent Fasting (I.F.) is where you voluntarily abstain from eating o/ drinking anything with calories during a specific time frame each day. There are several ways of doing this. My particular route will be approximately an 8hr eating window where I can consume up to 1600 calories and a 16hr period where I no longer can have any calories. (I still drink tea and water).
Day 13 “We are all of us in the gutter, but some of us are looking up at stars.”
I thought I’d start this entry out with one of my favorite Oscar Wide quotes. How we perceive things makes a huge difference on our end results. With this in mind, I am trying very hard to redefine how I look at the fasting periods. I believe one of the reasons this is proving to be so difficult to maintain is I see the cessation period as some sort of deprivation. Something to be endured until I can reward myself with food again. The more I read about what actually goes on during this time of fasting I am learning this is not the case at all. It usually takes about twelve hours on average for your body to process food.
Once this is done, if the G.I. is completed it work it has time to process any healing needed. Studies have also shown that microbes in your intestinal tract have a chance to flourish. These are the “good guys” that help process food and can help fight pathogens. (there’s a very informative article about this in the Chicago Tribune today, 09/18/18 http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/health/sns-green-effective-fasting-benfits-story.html) I don’t want to look like I’m just talking out of my backside.
So it isn’t “deprivation” but “taking a healing break”. That sounds better and the logic side of my brain can buy into the concept. I think this would work on standard dieters as well. Changing the terminology changes the way your mind grasps a concept. Don’t see the gutter, roll over and see the stars.
Day 14 “Use the force, even if it is the dark side”.
I try to avoid talking about the subject too much on this blog, but I have had a lifelong battle with depression. I have never been chemically treated for it or should I say at least not pharmaceutically treated. I have self-medicated numerous times in the past, but thankfully, those days are long past me now. One of the things that really helped me deal with my depression was hearing a quote by Freud that said: “Depression is anger turned inward”. You see, I never once thought of my depression as anger, just sadness/melancholia. I grew up with a rageaholic parent who had a hyper-pleaser partner. I found the histrionic displays of anger so distasteful that I vowed never to become like my mother. I unconsciously became more like my pleaser father. I am still trying to undo that.
Well, I am pretty deep into the weeds of digression, but the point is that I learned that depression can be a form of anger and that despite my denial I was carrying anger around, It became liberating for me. Now when I get depressed, I don’t ask myself “what am I sad about, I ask myself what I am angry about. I usually have to dig deep, But usually, find the source. Now how that plays into dieting/fasting is since I have a bad habit of trying to heal my emotions through food, I now try to find the anger and rechannel it towards a positive health goal. For example, f I feel rejected by someone or something I try to rechannel the energy towards self-improvement. Not so I will suddenly be “accepted’ but because I am a good person who deserves to be healthy. I try to avoid the “I’ll show them when I am in shape.” mantra for the “I am worthy of love, even now, and I deserve to be my best self for me” I don’t always succeed at this but at least I am now aware of the path.
Day 15 “the greatest of these is love”
I am now becoming convinced that maybe 55% of weight loss is mental, not physical. You become slim in mind long before you become slim in body. One of the first ways to become slim in mind is to practice self-compassion. One of the first things I did when I began this path was to take some nude photos of myself. I wanted to see myself the way someone would see me. It took me a long time to work up the nerve to see my pictures. Then I told myself “Keep looking at the picture until you can say to the picture ‘I love you’ and mean it”. I won’t lie, it was rough and it took me a very long time. I don’t have a body that looks the best it could right now. ( I believe that will fix that) But the body does serve me well, and it carries a (sometimes) wonderful soul. Alright, an always wonderful soul that just doesn’t always act wonderfully. I really believe compassion flows from inward to outward. I start here the rest is inevitable.