Fasting as a means to improve performance in endurance sports

coffeeI’m sitting down to write this having had breakfast for the first time in a week…

Lately, I’ve been practising “intermittent fasting”, which revolves around lengthening the time between your last meal in the evening and your first meal the following day.  It’s one of several ways I involve fasting to improve my health – as well as my running. Continue reading Fasting as a means to improve performance in endurance sports

2.5 day dry fast: dehydration as detox

desert weathering (4x3)This article will describe my first experience of a 2.5-day dry fast.  For more information about dry fasts in general click here, and for my experience with shorter 36-hour dry fasts click here.

Dehydration as detox: the phrase came to mind soon after finishing the fast earlier this week. Continue reading 2.5 day dry fast: dehydration as detox

36-hour dry fast

desert (4x3)Over the weekend I did another 36-hour dry fast: my second in just over a month.  In this article I’ll lay out my experiences and impressions of both.  For general information about dry fasting, please click here.

I first discovered dry fasting a couple of months ago.  Before that, of course I’d heard of the concept of not eating or drinking, but – like most modern Westerners – had written the idea off as something for just religious nutters. Continue reading 36-hour dry fast

Dry fasting

When you tell most people you’re thinking of doing a dry fast – that is, a fast in which you eat or drink nothing at all – they think you’re crazy.  That either you’re a crazy religious fanatic.  Or that you’re just crazy-crazy, with a tendency towards suicide.  Here in the modern world, we’re conditioned to believe that fasting without water is plain and simple stupid, if not dangerous, with little or no possible health benefits.

I week ago I might have said the same thing. Continue reading Dry fasting

Diets, fasts and healing for runners

When most people think of diets or fasting, they usually have weight loss in mind.  At the best of times this is a dubious practice, since changing the way you eat – especially if it involves reducing caloric intake – usually results in the body conserving energy and using calories more efficiently thereafter.  Although a more efficient body is generally a healthier body (good!), the problem is that, as a result, many people actually gain weight once they finish their diet or fast (bad!).  If you need to lose weight, the healthiest and most sustainable way to achieve this is to move.  Get out there and go for a (barefoot) run!!! Continue reading Diets, fasts and healing for runners

5 day water fast (day 6)

thumbs-upIt worked!  I’m talking less about finishing the five-day fast itself (this isn’t such a big challenge for me any more), than about my experiment with no transition back to normal eating afterwards.  I ate lots last night, not only the mung beans and rice, but also about 100 grams of nuts too, as well as a huge salad :-).  Digestion is already working fine. Continue reading 5 day water fast (day 6)

5 day water fast (day 5)

Let’s talk about food!

feastThe transition out of a fast is at least as important as the transition into a fast.  Once your stomach and digestive system have been asleep for a few days, you can’t just immediately pack it full with a deluxe pizza – no matter how attractive the thought of a good meal!  I made the mistake of doing exactly this after my first 7-day water fast.  I suffered with that pizza in my stomach for the next two or three days… Continue reading 5 day water fast (day 5)

5 day water fast (day 4)

This is the last full day of my fast, since the fifth full day actually ends tomorrow at dinner time.  I find myself looking forward to cooking dinner tomorrow and getting back to normal again.  It’s like the opposite of what happened before the fast, in saying goodbye to food before the actual fast.  Now it’s a funny combination of the clarity of consciousness while on a fast, and yet with the frequent pull away from being here and now by thinking about the menu… Continue reading 5 day water fast (day 4)

5 day water fast (day 3)

I can’t believe how smoothly things are going. On my first couple of water fasts, the 2nd and 3rd days were by far the toughest. I just wanted to crawl up in a corner and collapse. In contrast, today it’s been a full day, and I still feel good, full of energy. It’s amazing the way the body can adapt with a little practice in fasting. It totally changes the experience. Here’s what happened today: Continue reading 5 day water fast (day 3)