After 93 hours of juice fasting, I had my first full meal on Friday night. I went into the fast with the “I’ll TRY” attitude and never really intended to make it through 7 days. Hell I never though I’d make it far past 1 day but I did a whole heck of a lot better than I imagined. I also feel like I learned so much in the time period I did it.
The first two days for me were soooooo incredibly hard. You already read how the first day went, well day 2 went pretty similar. I had the same typical obsessive thoughts about food and relating the WANT to taste and chew something to the thought of starvation. More headache and a little light-headedness. I started the morning sipping a juice and had another smoothie at lunchtime which held me over the rest of the work day. I then came home and got ready for the gym. This time I was able to get into a Zumba class so I didn’t have to worry so much about doing boring cardio and thinking about food the whole time.
My son had come to the gym with me and afterwards he wanted some food from Chick-Fil-A. They do have some of the best chicken nuggets I’ve tasted so I knew this was going to be hard. While in the line I was thinking “Maybe I’ll just get the three-piece chicken tenders”. I ordered his food and the attendant ask the closing question, “Would you like anything else?”. As much as I wanted to order me some tenders, I replied “No, that’s it”. I was proud of myself for not giving in. Or as I like to say, telling my “fuck it” brain to fuck off!
He was eating in the back seat and by the time he got home he said he was done. I put him to bed and went back downstairs to check out the left over food. There was one chicken nugget and some french fries. I wanted to throw it all away but my mind got the best of me and I ate the chicken nugget. Knowing that I was going against what I had wanted, I took the french fries and fed them to the dogs. I then went upstairs and went to bed. The funniest thing happened next
I was asking my boyfriend how he was doing with the fast, he said he was fine. I asked him if he had any food at all. He said no at first and then I was telling him how someone had eaten the nuts that were in the pantry. He then broke down and said “Ok, I ate some”. I laughed and said “Oh, so you lied to me”. He answered saying that he was lying to himself. Isnt that something familiar? I’m pretty sure we all try to lie to ourselves about certain things. We act as if we can believe the lie then maybe whatever it is didn’t really happen or exist. We try to make ourselves feel better, not by accepting the truth, but trying to believe a lie.
It was funny because the next thing I said was “OK FINE, I had one of the chicken nuggets”. It was like we both wanted to lie, but honestly it felt so good to tell the truth. It was so funny at the same time because here we are both admitting to eating very small portions of food as if it were bad and we didn’t want to go to hell. There was no judging, we laughed about it and went to sleep.
After I made it past day 1 and 2, I was figuring day 3 was my goal. I wanted to make it through 3 days and see how I felt. Day 3 was a breeze. I hadn’t really thought much about eating at all. I felt like I had the most energy I’ve had in the earlier 2 days and my “starvation” had gone away. I heard usually after 2-3 days the hunger goes away and I wanted to know if that was true and how not being “hungry” after 3 days of not really eating anything felt. I felt awesome I and I felt like I had reached my point of satisfaction.
Since we are telling the truth here, ONE of the main reasons I was interested in starting the fast was to lose weight. I had gained weight and was 10 lbs heavier than normal. After spending the last couple months binge eating and eating horribly, the calories had got me. So I was excited to lose a few pounds, especially before leaving for Bali in a few days. The other reason was still true though, I wanted to challenge my discipline and get my control back. After these last few days, became just an added bonus to what I really got out of it.
I knew that food had a hold on me. During that time period I was gaining ten pounds, I knew so many times when I had eaten stuff I knew inside I didn’t really want to eat but had given in to what I played off as a “weakness”. Its amusing when you actually notice those moments in which you have to make a decision either go towards what your inner self is aligned to or go against it. One of the most important steps in making any type of change is being able to recognize those moments. Do I continue down the path of which I am used to, or do I choose something different? Choosing the path you are used to is usually the easy choice. Usually when it’s easy, you aren’t learning. That moment you decide to choose something different then what you are used to, you have created, what Gabrielle Bernstein would call a “miracle” and you have opened the door to learn something new.
Throughout this process I’ve had a few of those moments. The first 20 minutes I was in work I had this moment while staring at chocolate. In 9/10 cases I would have chosen to eat the chocolate. I debated over it in my head and I chose to do something different. I chose to stay on the path in which I wanted to follow. And guess how I knew that was the right path? Because it felt good! I didn’t regret my decision and I didn’t feel bad about it. One of the sure-fire ways to know you are aligned is…YOU FEEL GOOD! A few times I gave in and did what I would normally do. When I ate the pineapple on day 1, I was in that moment and decided to go against myself. I knew the moment right before I chose to eat it that I was eating it because I was making a “fuck it” choice. Something inside of me KNEW that I didn’t need it, that I didn’t want it, that eating it wasn’t aligned to my true choice but that part of me that is used to giving in, gave in.
During the time that I was fasting, especially after making it through day 1 and 2, I realized that I have so much more control over my choices then I give myself credit for. Even through the moments I gave in, there is something to be said about taking responsibility over those choices as well. Realizing that every moment I have a choice and taking full responsibility for my choices, even if they are against my inner self, gives me a sense of freedom. Cutting the excuses and releasing the blame can be very empowering.
Being able to get through these few days showed me that all the excuses and blame I placed on why my eating habits were the way they were, didn’t really exist. There was no truth behind the excuses or the blame. All the excuses or blame did was made me feel powerless to the choices I was previously making. “I have a sweet tooth”, “I’ll start eating better tomorrow”, “I already fucked up so why stop”. Being able to hold a steady ground pushed those statements out the door.
The best part is, when I did decide to eat on Friday, I was at ESPNZone and there were so many bad things I could have gotten. But again, I had that moment in which I had to make a decision. Trust me, I wanted nothing more than to have some hot wings or some artichoke and spinach dip but in that moment I knew that those things weren’t aligned to my goals so I chose a chicken salad with the dressing on the side.
Now that I have tested myself and I have proof that I can stay on the path in which I want to follow, there is absolutely no excuse or blame for going the other way. If in moments I choose to go the other way, all I have to do is take responsibility and learn from it. I believe those moments in which I “gave in” were necessary to further that lesson.
I know that I don’t have to eat a chocolate every time I see it. I know that I’m not gonna die just because I’m not “chewing” something. I know that I don’t have to pick the most unhealthy meal just because it’s an option. I know that if I can handle a few days of not eating food, that when I do eat it, I don’t have to go overboard. I know that I have become more mindful to the thoughts that play out in my head and the control I was letting them have on me. I am more mindful of my actions. In that I can be more mindful to my habits and turn them into intentions.
Even though I had a meal on Friday and a meal on Saturday. I don’t think I am done with the lessons quite yet. I am going to continue on this “juicing” journey. I will place no restrictions on myself but I will continue to pay attention to my mind and my body and listen to what it is teaching me.
My challenge to you is, try to become aware of those moments in which you have a choice…. and choose differently. Even if its something small. Those small “miracles” will lead to great change!