It is another beautiful autumn day in Colorado. In 23 minutes, I will finish an 18-hour fast. This time, I did not break it. It was challenging. However, there is joy in the morning.
Today is Friday. Our cosmetologist/manicurist is coming this afternoon. The nails on my right hand still look okay, but the left-hand fingernails are worn.
What can I do today to deepen my commitment to healthy living? I can review my Achieve 50 kg mindmap. You can examine the map if you wish. However, it is specific to me, so if you have committed yourself, you will want to make your own map. Mindmeister allows up to three mindmaps free.
Eating Time Management
My Eating Time Management (ETM) frequency report in JV Life Tracker since Day One is showing promise. Ten of eleven days, I have eaten within a twelve-hour window. I have eaten within a six-hour window for three days. That means I have fasted 18 hours on those days.
Eating Time Management is not something you have to be perfect at. You practice it. According to Dr. Satchin Panda in The Circadian Code, fasting for twelve hours yields significant benefits. For each hour that you add to that, up to 16 hours, your benefits double. However, it is harder to fast longer. What do you do? You practice it. I was no pro at first. As you keep doing it, you gain confidence. If you fall off the wagon, you have to work back into it. I have fallen off the wagon several times; I am still developing my ability to fast. Fortunately, I am far better than when I first started.
It is easier to fast when you record your fasts, which I do in Cronometer. Here is yesterday, and today’s fast.
18 hours 22 minutes
Sep 24, 2020 2:38 PM
Sep 25, 2020 9:00 AM
I could comment that it was kind of a pain. However, I did not get nauseous, shaky, or lose my balance. My productivity was not impacted much. It could have been enhanced because my motivation was high. Instead of watching YouTube videos all evening, I worked on my blog. I was a bit tired, but my mind was clear. So what can I say: “Hard but worth it.”
Walk to the Library
The weather was beautiful when I walked to the library. I stopped and got another DVD, this time Disney’s Frozen, which I have been wanting to watch for years.
Lunchtime is approaching. I plan to make another green drink. Fortunately, I have not snacked since breakfast. Usually, I have difficulty getting from breakfast to lunch without eating something. However, the strength of my commitment must be working for me. You may want to eat whenever you are hungry. For some people, that may work.
However, at least 80% of those with a serious mental illness, including bipolar, are overweight or obese. For some reason, maybe several reasons, I cannot even maintain my weight if I eat when I am hungry, let alone lose. One cause of this, I suspect, is my medication, which affects the brain’s neurotransmitters to stimulate excessive hunger. If you are on antidepressants or bipolar meds, you may have noticed a similar problem. Medicine has nothing to offer you for your weight problem except to go on a weight-loss program.
Developing the ability to fast at will is one way to compensate for the effect. Eating high nutrient-density foods helps too. However, even when consuming a highly nutritious diet, I still hunger beyond my physical needs. So a fast may need to be combined with a high-nutrient diet and, dare I say, tracking my food intake. I am sorry weight control is not more accessible, but it is what it is. You may be relieved to know there is a solution, even though it is challenging. You also have the option of living with your weight. However, you may not be happy with it. If you are not, you have come to the right place.
More Lunch and Motivation
I am finishing my green drink. It may not be enough to get me to snack time. What could I eat with it that would maximize my JV Life Tracker points when I score them tomorrow? You can see that I derive pleasure from getting a high score. I can structure those points to motivate myself to reach my goals. If I am not motivated, I can change how I score. Instead of depending on a teacher to set up my points, I do it myself.
Some kind of fat would probably be the most satiating. Going for carbohydrates can interfere with weight loss because they raise insulin levels. It is insulin that makes you store fat, not fat.
I ate pistachio nuts that I had purchased for my husband. Thank goodness he is willing to share. Now that I have eaten them, I still feel a bit hungry. More food will have to wait until snack time.
Unfortunately, the DVD from the library does not work on my computer. I wonder if the format is incompatible. It could be the drive; it has given me trouble lately.
I have been re-reading Tony Robbins’ Awaken the Giant Within the past few days. He says the secret of motivation is associating things you want with pleasure and things you do not want with pain. Since sugar is a source of pleasure for most people, we are attracted to sweets. Children can even be bribed with them. Even though they momentarily make us feel good, usually something adverse follows. For me, it is weight gain, depression, and a flare-up of my yeast infection. I have even lost a tooth to excessive sugar consumption in my youth.
Heart disease, diabetes, cancer, skin problems, and Alzheimer’s disease can result from sugar consumption. However, they happen down the road, and we are not usually thinking about that when a tempting sweet beckons. The cure? Be aware of what is down the road. How can we do that? Education. I wrote a term paper my freshman year in college about sugar. What I learned was what I expected, only worse. Unfortunately, what I knew at that time was not persuasive enough to change my behavior. I learned over the years, through trial and error, that sugar is the seductive enemy. I experienced lots of trial and lots of error. My term paper was right. If you are smart, save yourself the trial and error and give up sugar when you are young. If you cannot, keep trying. You can eventually master it.
I will warn you, though. Sugar is a master in its own right. It will try to control you. Once you eat it, you will want more and more. That is why you can control your children with it. Hopefully, you will teach them when they are young to be free of it. Be free of it yourself, and weight loss and health in general will come more readily.
My husband still has the cookies our new neighbor attached to our door. I have not eaten them; I wish I could get rid of them, but my husband insists on keeping them. They are so pretty; perhaps he likes to look at them.
I ate the remainder of my husband’s scramble bowl. It was not already in Cronometer, so I entered incomplete nutrient facts. The label did not break down the amino acids, for instance. That is okay, though. I believe I got sufficient amino acids, even though my diet diary does not show that. There also was no phosphorus on the label. However, I am well enough acquainted with the ingredients to know I got a sufficient amount of that nutrient today.
Once again, I ended my eating window early and started another 18-hour fast. The pain of my fast last night was more than compensated by the joy of completing it this morning. I can anticipate the pleasure of that joy and associate it with my fast. I also lost some weight, though I was not making that the centerpiece of my motivation, because sometimes, that does not happen. If you hang in there long enough, it will, however.
Diet Diary and Analysis
If you would like to join me on this journey from the beginning, please start with Day One. If you wish to download a FREE copy of my ebook (with no need to enter your name or email), click on the book below. Please continue this journey with me by clicking on the arrows at the right of the page.
This article, with its diet diary, shows what worked for me. I do not claim that it will work for you. Consult a licensed medical provider to determine your diet and medical care. These blog entries do not diagnose or treat any disease. If I provide any clues for you or your provider, I will be happy.