|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on January 21, 2020 at 5:15 PM|
5 Day Fast
Ok, so I've been thinking of doing this whole 5 day fasting thing for years and always been too chicken, the thought of not sacrificing my body to that velvety bar of chocolate, the moistness of a welsh cake or whatever sugar laden treat literally struck fear into my very soul. After a lot of research, a lot of additional reading and a lot of telling myself it's a good idea I was going in.
I kissed the dog, wrote my will and left a note saying "If you don't hear from me in 5 days send help, I may be dead"
Let's talk a little about what got me here? Many years ago I ate my feelings and bloated to a American Goodyear blimp size 30 stone. After realizing this wasn't a good or healthy look I spent a couple of years getting down to 20 stone and then after reading Dr Michael Moseley's book about fasting and a 600 calorie a day diet, stopped all my Metformin and Insulin injections and lost 2.5 stone.
My HBa1C reading put me virtually "un" diabetic and I had won, I pulled my oversized t shirt over my head and ran round shouting "GOOOOOOAAAALLLLL!!!!"I had taken on the Gods of the faulty pancreas and defeated them......WRONG!
Whereas I lost about another half stone I took my eye off the cake ball and 3 years, 3 house moves, a divorce and a year eating ready meals, KFC's, kebabs and drinking a lot of Heineken, Budweiser and Birra Moretti I cleverly punted my blood sugars thru the uprights to the cheers of "You're diabetic AGAIN! WELL DONE KNOBHEAD"
Ok, serious stuff now, I need to make this statement right here.
DO NOT DO WHAT I'VE DONE, I AM MERELY SHARING AN EXPERIENCE, I'M NOT MAKING A SUGGESTION OK? BEFORE DOING ANYTHING YOU NEED TO SEE A DOCTOR. IF I DIE BECAUSE I DO THIS IT'S ME DYING AND I'M RESPONSIBLE FOR ME, YOU TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES, ITS GOT NOWT TO DO WITH ME!
Right, Fasting! Let's dance you and I.........
11am - Woke up. Last night I had a massive kebab, I'm regretting it as I'm heavy as hell this morning and I had chips too, a stupid fasting rookie mistake because I've woken up hangry (Hungry / Angry)
I don't feel too bad, but then again I've not actually done anything more fasting wise than I usually have by this time of day?
I'm feeling a bit doomy and gloomy, Midnight Thurs / Friday seems an eternity away right now.
4pm - It's been a bit weird as I thought I'd have less energy but I have energy, I just feel a bit disjointed, again though I'm still not in unknown territory, I go this long without food a fair bit. I'm wondering if I should take the hour long drive to Cambridge tonight to play an open mic but think I will, just need to make sure I don't wobble too much.
4:30pm - Went for a sleep, listened to some sounds of a stream on spotify which was lush but felt very cold and have a naggy headache.
Decided against the Open Mic, it's an hour away and don't think I should drive, I'm sure I'll feel better soon though
7pm - Had a spoon of marmite in hot water, tasted like the greatest thing I've ever eaten, been very tired all day but will still have an early night
11am - Slept well and pretty much unbroken BUT have a head ache and generally feel moody. Strange how I don't actually feel hungry though? It's quite bizarre?
2pm - Feel pretty lethargic and generally shitty but still no hunger to speak of, that said I'm doing very little, finding it difficult to concentrate on stuff a lot.
5:30pm - Went out and played a gig in Peterborough's finest pizza parlour brilliantly called the Pizza Parlour and Music Cafe. Trust me, the food in there is beyond immense, a fact I remind myself of at regular intervals throughout my show. As an additional stroke of luck the birthday party who were eating and partying in the venue put a slice of birthday cake on the stage right in front of me at the start of my 2nd set. I'm not usually a fan of cake, more a savoury cheese fan but my heads telling me I'd eat cake from the nostril of a camel right now so THANKS FOR THAT!!!! Good job they didn't have a celebratory baked camembert, I may have dived into it.
Home by 10:30 and in bed for 11. Had a strange feeling of euphoria driving home, something felt like it changed in my body, like a switch had been thrown. It wore off pretty quickly when I realized my post gig cheese on toast wasn't happening
Woken up by a noisy girlfriend at 7am, strangely didn't fall back to sleep but stayed awake while she smashed around the bedroom, dropping her phone and drying her hair with the worlds only Boeing powered hairdryer. I go back to sleep when she goes to work catching an hour's worth of wonderful slumber while she battles the A14, I call THAT penance.
10am - I'm up and feeling ok, I try to do a little bit of basic yoga and realize I'm at a level which is lower than Youtube's collection of "Basic low level yoga for infants and great grand parents" yoga instructional videos. I choose to meditate and manage that pretty well without thinking of cheese.
Midday - I get a sudden rush of energy, I fill in forms I need to, I deliver a hoodie to a printers that I need to and when I get home I walk the forms to the place they should be and then walk the dog a good couple of miles. I feel a little wobbly but I've not eaten since Saturday night and its Tuesday lunch time so what do I expect?
4pm - Really bored of not eating, even though I'm not hungry
5pm - Even more bored yet still not hungry......Figure that one out!
11pm - Sod it, I'm going to bed, still not hungry, and when I say hungry I mean proper hungry, you know when you could eat dog food off the floor hungry? I've had the odd pang but it really is just more the boredom of not planning around food, maybe there's something in that?
The good lady is off today, normally I'd look forward to this but today I know that 4 days in I'm going to be a bit ratty.
I weighed myself and found I'd lost 5lbs and did a "60% of the way through / am I doing the right thing" blood sugar check, I was 16.3 when I started, today I was 5.1!!!!
The foggy head, slight headache, minor wobbliness and boredom at not eating cloud was generally lifted up out of sight when I saw that! I could still murder a pie though or some cheese..........mmmm cheese. STOP IT HENSHAW!
It's a busy day, putting cover designs together for the duo album with a violinist I've been recording with, listening to final masters and getting them away to the printers ready for the first gig we have on our short tour this coming Sunday. I can't get over how cold I've been, I feel the cold anyway due to being an old git but it's been worse for a day or two now, I'm not being overly scientific here, more a simpleton (see what I did there? My band is called The Scientific Simpletons) and put this down to the fact I've not eaten since Saturday and its Wednesday! I'm boosted by the fact that I'm actually achieving this!
Mid day - Feel a bit sick if I'm honest, breathless too but still going
2pm - Feel rank
4pm - Felt really dreadful so thought walking the dog might help, I was a bit of a dick to the girlfriend because I felt wobbly (sorry hunny)
Strangely the walk did me good, I felt a lot better when I got home but can't wait for this to be over now
STATEMENT - Sorry to everyone I've pissed off this week
Bed at 11pm
The end is in sight! I was up early as I had a rehearsal to get to in Nottingham which is an hour and a half away and I successfully got there within the allotted 30 mins late window.
Again I'm surprised at how "un" hungry I am. I have a mild head ache and feel like something's not right (It's not, its Thursday and the last food I had was on Saturday night) but hunger is just not one of the things I've really felt
5pm - Home, I'm short tempered, but know the end is nigh! When I was a kid and my Dad used to take me to the Transatlantic motorbike match races there were always ranty loud men with "The End is Nigh" painted on boards which they wore either side of their torsos, are motorcyclists really such sinners? Why do they care? Why am I thinking about this now? It's to stop me thinking of cheese again isn't it?
6pm, it's the very last quarter of a day, 6 hours left out of 120, I've not eaten for 114 hours! Its bonkers how much energy I have, I feel no different to normal now, it has been a gradual increase in energy levels but seriously, I feel fine.
I do need to decide on whether I stay up till midnight to eat something or go to bed and waiting till morning? and then what am I having? Coffee for starters and I think maybe a little omelette, I need to remember to break back into it gently
11pm - Give up on the day and go to bed, I can eat tomorrow, what's 8 hours between friends and an empty stomach?
I woke up this morning, a massive smile on my face and a huge sense of achievement, I've not eaten for 5 days! FIVE DAYS!!!! That's huge for me. Obviously now I have the whole measurements thing to do, will I have made any difference to my bloods and will I have lost some weight? I have to admit I'm pretty nervous.
When I started this I weighed 16st 12lbs, I tentatively step on to the scales, digital numbers race round and seem to take an age.......6ft 5..........................!!!! EH? I KNOW THAT!!!!!, I step off the scales, zero it again, select setting 4 (mine) and wait again......16st 3lbs!!!!! Sodding hell, thats 9lbs, I'm amazed and very happy but it's the bloods that are key to me, my ability to not have toes and feet cut off in later life is something I find important. My recently eaten kebab blood sugar reading was a massive 16.3, a short pin prick later and its.......5!!!!
Get the f**k in! I WIN, I WIN!!!!!
All in all, as I sit back now, a good 12 hours since I ate 2 Cornish wafer crackers and a tiny slice of Tor Valley tickler cheese I reflect on how the last 5 days wasn't anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be. I was hardly hungry, maybe 5 times in total, I was more bored, I was bored when I realized I didn't have a breakfast or lunch or dinner or tea or secret KFC to look forward to. I didn't have that thing you key your day around, that thing we call "mealtime" and until now I hadn't realized what a ritual it had become, a ritual for my entire life.
I eat 3 meals a day because I was taught to, I also like salt because I was told by some sick bastard in my distant past that it cooled your food down?? I was impressionable, gullible and I think it was about the time I got into Duran Duran in a big way but less said about that the better, needless to say I love salt because I've always put loads on my food.
Back to this whole Autophagy thing I mentioned in the title? What exactly is it? Well short answer is I don't know, or need to know if truth be told but I do know that Autophagy kicks in somewhere around the 12 to 18 hour mark of not eating. I read somewhere that its 48 hours in when your good cells hunker down and your body has the crappy ones go into repair mode. It was certainly day 3 when I felt a big difference to energy and my general feeling of crap-ness, I was fuzzy for 2 days then something flicked a switch and I had energy.
It seems numerous things happen when autophagy kicks in, but the key is that the process instigates depriving the body of nutrients. Now I'm no human biologist, scientist or anyone with a big understanding of this but what I've gleaned from research is this, Glucagon is the hormone opposite to insulin, and when we eat insulin levels go up and glucagon goes down, if we don't eat glucagon goes up and insulin goes down, glucagon stimulates the process of autophagy, in fact it's the biggest boost to autophagy, at least its the biggest boost clever people who research these things know of.
So fasting does this, it stimulates autophagy, but it also does more. Fasting stimulates a growth hormone which makes the body produce new bits for the old worn out bits, the bits that need replacing, like giving your car a service, replacing the old bits and fitting new ones. Pretty much an all round good thing to do to yourself.
For me this was about flushing some fat from my liver, getting control of my blood sugar again and seeing if I could do this fasting thing everyone is talking about and I've put on a pedestal for a few years. I'm happy I've done it and will definitely do it again (Sorry Hunny) It did me good, I'd change things around, maybe getting out of everyone's way would at least help the people in my life.
Right, crackers and cheese, where did I hide you???