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[Disclaimer:  Please remember I am NOT a medical professional and the “tips” in this post are based on my anecdotal experience(s).  Consult your personal physician before starting any diet or exercise regime.    —    KMAB]
My last 40hrs water fast did not go well.  I didn’t complete the 40hr;  I only made it about 19 – 20hrs.  On the “full-day” portion of the fast, I had a late morning doctor’s appointment and some shopping chores.  The sum of this left me tired and HUNGRY.  I ended up breaking the fast just after noon.  Then I didn’t want to start over at 5pm, so I carried on normally through yesterday and started over at 6pm.  Today is the “new” 9th cycle full-fast day.
Why 6pm instead of 5pm?  LoL…  I took a nap and over-slept.  I was reading.  I felt tired.  I donned my CPAP mask and closed my eyes…  Next I knew, it was 4:55pm and I’d not eaten my dinner.  So, I rushed a couple of dogs onto the boil and had a cup of mint chip ice cream for dessert.  (Yes.  I know it’s a heck of a diet…)
My tips for successful short water fasts:
1)  Get the start time right…  Breakfast and lunch don’t matter, but you’ve got to be organized or you’ll never get the dinner cooked and eaten by the 5pm start time.  The later the start time, the later the end time.  (You want to end as close to getting up as possible.)
2)  Stay up a little later on the start day / evenings.  You’ve eaten a couple of meals that day and staying up a bit longer isn’t that much more difficult (hunger / eating wise).
3)  If you are allowed to…  sleep in a little later on the full fast day.  The less time you are awake, the less time you have to think about eating.
4)  Coffee / tea:  I drink a LOT of coffee – about 60 fluid ounces between getting up and 2 “ish” pm – on the full-fast day.  Coffee is a mild appetite suppressant and the volume makes your stomach “feel” full – which may itself BE the appetite suppressant.
The stomach doesn’t have a calorie gauge.  It does have a volume gauge.  If you eat (or drink) a lot, your stomach will tell your brain to turn off the hunger hormones simply because you are full.  The gauge doesn’t know about calories, proteins, carbs, nutrition, sugar, or any of that.  It only knows full, not empty and empty.  And it seems to have a bit of a delay processing between switching from “not empty” to “full”.  For most folks this delay seems to be about 15 to 30 minutes.
The “interesting” thing about black coffee is it gets to be an acquired taste.  I’ve been drinking “stand-up” coffee for about 40+ years and Bailey’s coffee most Saturdays for the last 20 years, so straight-up black coffee was something I had to adjust to.  Now, I must admit, I prefer it to my normal coffee.  (Although, I still enjoy my Saturday’s Bailey’s.)
Some readers may be asking:  “What’s a ‘stand-up’ coffee?”
A “stand-up” coffee is when you add enough CoffeeMate and sugar to your coffee so the plastic stirrer stands-up in your mug.  Super sweet / super creamy.  (And, yes, I have had people ask if I want a little coffee with my sweetened creamer.)  For those of you who may foolishly think to try this at home, I stopped it about 30 years ago when I developed kidney stones.  I (perhaps falsely) attributed the stones to the powdered creamer.   In any case, I’ve not used powder for well over 20 years and I still get kidney stones (grains).
5)  Take a nap on the full fast day.  I’m not a big “bed-napper” myself.  I’m more of TV watching me in the easy chair for a half-hour napper, but it does make the day go by faster.  The simple fact is most of your burned calories is your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) – how many calories you burn just to stay alive – and those get burned whether you’re awake or asleep.  And, I’m generally not aware of food / hunger when I’m asleep.
6)  Avoid watching sports on TV.  Sports are on TV to sell you cars, booze and food.  And, not necessarily in that order.  Except at dinner time:  then all TV is off limits – for the same reason, but mostly take-out food ads.  If you have to watch the evening news – watch public broadcasting.
7)  At meal time, go sit outside or to the far end of your house (away from the kitchen / dining area) when everyone else is eating.  It’s much easier to not feel hungry if you don’t smell the food cooking, being eaten, or lingering in the air.
8)  Drink at least two 8oz glasses of water in the evening.  I drink about 6pm and 8pm.  It fills the tummy a little and helps move anything in your digestive tract from the prior day.  Plus water is just good for you and most people don’t drink enough of it.
9)  You should probably “break fast” the following day with something healthy.  I almost never do.  Mea culpa, mea culpa… but it’s the truth.
10)  And this is probably the most important tip:  Lighten up and learn to forgive yourself.  If you don’t make it through the day – who really cares?  You are NOT a personal failure (in life or even “just” dieting) just because you didn’t make it through the day.  Your imagined state of self-discipline (or lack thereof) is just that:  imagined!  Eat slowly.  Enjoy the flavor(s) and the sensations of eating (smells, tastes, fullness, company) and being alive.  Start again tomorrow (or soon).
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On This Day In:
2021 And Yet I Still Pray
I’m Still Listening To It
2020 What Am I Missing?
If Only
2019 For Most #IncompetentDonald Followers
2018 I Dare You
2017 To Republicans Who Choose Party Over Country
2016 All About Control
2015 Liberty Is Extravagant
2014 Always Remember To Reach
Have You Registered To Vote Yet?
2013 Ripples From The Water’s Edge
Because I Was Alone
2012 POI vs Reality
Dear And Sacred
2011 Chilled Again

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The end of day fifteen and the morning of day sixteen…  Live by the scale, die by the scale.
Morning weight:  355lbs.  (on Day 16)
I am up / down “3/18”.  As in, 3lbs up from yesterday and 18lbs down from my fasting start weight:  373lbs (the morning of Day 1).
As bad as it may be (for a dieter) to hit a plateau, it’s psychologically MUCH worse when you have a day to day gain.  One pound?  Okay.  Three pounds?  WTF?  (Pardon my language / expressions.)  Three pounds is either a healthy meal or it’s almost a half-gallon of water (or similar density fluid).  Since I didn’t eat and I don’t feel bloated (water retention), the most reasonable two explanations are:  1)  I’ve accidentally moved the scale, so it’s giving different readings;  or, 2)  the universe is unkind and / or unjust.  (I prefer to think it’s the second option.)  To make it even more painful, the scale wasn’t “bouncy”.  The needle was stable.
Now, please recall I take my weight two ways each morning:  forwards and back.  This means I stand in almost the exact same spot each morning, but on “forward”, I bend my knees slightly and lean as far to the front as I can while maintaining full foot contact, but with my weight shifted fully onto my toes.  For the “back” weigh-in, I straighten my legs and tilt as far back on my heels as I can without falling off of the scale.  Again, I still keep my feet in full contact with the scale.  This gives me (respectively) my high and my low weight for the day.  The two weights tend to vary about 5 to 7 pounds (as much as 10, but so far never less than 5), and they also tend to vary between themselves.  By this I mean, they don’t usually both go up or down the same number on any given day.  It’s usually 1 and 2 or 2 and 1.  I’m not saying they don’t.  I’m saying it’s far less common for them to correspond.  Today they both increased by 3lbs from yesterday’s weigh-in.
Of course, I have to consider what I may have done different yesterday from any other day.  Off the top of my head, I can only think of two things:  1)  I had a mug of black coffee in the morning;  and,  2)  I had more fruit juice in my blend than normal.  The day before I was a bit fed up with the taste of the blend and I felt a bit down on my energy level.  I countered that yesterday by adding more juice and less ice to the blend mix.  This was probably somewhere between 8 to 12 ounces of juice.  It is certainly possible the extra fructose contributed to the weight gain.  It’s hard to imagine it to have been the black coffee.
About sugar (well, about fructose) –  my understanding is sugar doesn’t (by itself) cause water (fluid) retention.  What sugar does is promote an increase in insulin (there’s that hormone again) which causes the body to retain sodium (salt), which in turn causes you to retain water.  The body has a very narrow band of tolerance for sugar (glucose in the bloodstream) which is maintained by increasing or decreasing the amount of insulin in the body.
About the coffee – I tried adding the coffee because the intermittent fasting book I just read said it was okay to drink black coffee or unflavored (black or green) tea – or plain water, and it wasn’t considered “breaking” your daily fast period.  I have never had coffee or black tea while on a fast before (in over 35 years) as removal of caffeine (like sugar) is usually one of the targets of a “cleansing” fast.  I have had herbal teas before while veggie broth fasting (over 30 years ago), but never while on a veggie-juice or veggie-blend fast.  My expectation was that it would make the hairs on my forearms stand up.  Surprisingly, it did not.  I also don’t feel like I got my usual coffee “buzz” –  that “ahh” sensation.  We drink Folger’s ground coffee at our house.  It struck me as fairly bitter.  Not as bad as back in my (ancient) memory of my Army days, but nowhere near as enjoyable as my sugar / half-and-half / Bailey’s Irish Cream.  Most of the year, I only drink coffee on the weekends.  This last year, with joining Costco and paying only 2/3rds the price for Bailey’s, I’ve been going through a pot-load of coffee on any given day.  (A pot-load is between 10 and 12 cups of brewed coffee.  The Bailey’s and half-and-half are on top of that.)
Ultimately, there is little to no chance to guess or deduce what may have caused the “bump”.  All I can do is continue down the path for a day or two and see if it really is an aberration or if something has fundamentally changed.  I just finished my morning (10:30am) mug of black coffee.  I guess we’ll see what we see tomorrow…  The next step will be to eliminate the coffee and see what that does.  Time will tell (or not).
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On This Day In:
2021 Said The Anti-Vaxxer
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2020 Is #45 In Good Spirits?
Alone With My Tears
2019 Learning To…
Day 15: Die By The Scale
2018 Just Wondering
2017 Until I Think Of Something Better
2016 Who Are You?
2015 Renaissance Reptiles
2014 Book Return
2013 Keep Writing Your Truths
Perilous Times For The U.S. Military
2012 The Victor
2011 Forging Away At My Deadlines
2010 Try This With Your Shoes…

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If something is presented as an accepted truth, alternative ways of thinking do not even come up for consideration.
     —    Ellen Langer
[To start off, #IncompetentDonald hasn’t made America great again.  He wouldn’t know where to start or how to go about doing it even if he really wanted to make it happen.  So, to now claim  he’s “done” it (made America great again), and now wants to be re-elected to keep it that way, is even more laughable.  (Yes, we haven’t even had the mid-terms and #DonTheCon is already running for re-election.)  It reminds me of “W” standing in front of his “Mission Accomplished” banner at the start of the Iraq war (1 May 2003).  We are still there (in Iraq and Afghanistan) over 15 years later…  If you are not in the 1% which the Republican tax cut greatly benefited, ask yourself:  “Will I be better off without healthcare and with reduced Social Security and Medicare coverage?”  That is surely where we are headed if Republicans retain control of both Houses of Congress.  John McCain is gone.  Obamacare will go down if there is another Republican controlled vote to kill it.  The tax cut has already worsened the federal debt AND deficit, and despite their claims they will protect Social Security, Republicans are already targeting “entitlements” (SSA and Medicare benefits) in their rhetoric.   How long will it be before they are reducing benefits in their legislation?  America, it is long past time to wake up and smell the coffee.    —    kmab]
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On This Day In:
2021 Learning And Teaching
Two Loves
2020 Does Anyone Else Look Forward To The Last Lawn Mowing ‘Til Spring?
Only For You
2019 10,000 Tries
2018 Keep America Great – Vote This Tuesday
2017 Old Style Ear Candy
2016 Next Tuesday
2015 Wanna Trade?
2014 Brothers And Friends
2013 So Suddenly
2012 At The Center
2011 Live Long And Thinner
Got Health?
2010 SF Giants – 2010 World Series Champions!!!
52 – 54 – 56 – 58
2009 Diet Update
Pictures from Chicago Trip…

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A few nights back, I was chatting with my older daughter about funny things which happen at work.  She chuckled and said like teaching the boss to make his own coffee.  I asked what she was referring to.  She said a co-worker approached her one day and commented she was sooooo lucky to have a boss who didn’t expect her to get up and make his coffee for him.  The co-worker inquired how she managed it.
My daughter explained she didn’t actually.  She began working for her boss as an office intern while in high school.  Her only experience with adults drinking coffee up till then was her parents (my wife and I) drinking instant coffee.  When she was asked to make some coffee, she added a couple of spoonfuls of ground coffee to the pot, poured in some boiling hot water, and gave it a stir.  Voila!
She didn’t realize ground coffee went in a separate place and required a filter…
No one actually complained, but no one asked her to make a pot of coffee for quite awhile after that.
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On This Day In:
2016 Preparation
2015 Scarcely Asked
2014 They Resemble Us
2013 Both
2012 That’s Success!
2011 Losing At Dominoes
2010 1,001

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You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.
    ―     C.S. Lewis
[Actually, I prefer coffee to tea, but I fully understand the sentiment.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2014 Three…
2013 Uncle Joe’s Song
Live, Then, As If…
2012 Still Trying
2011 Not Deserving

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When I visited coffee farms in Ethiopia, the farmers could not believe we spend a week’s wages in their country on a cup of coffee in ours…
    —    Colin Firth
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