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Posts Tagged ‘Juice Fasting’

I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.
   —  Erma Bombeck
Okay, the above quote is not strictly true for my family, but it seems pretty close…  All of my immediate family have struggled with weight and the impact of that weight on our health.
If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, you know this (dieting and health) is recurring topic for my posts as I continue to struggle with my morbid obesity.  Last year, I went on a 42 day vegetable juicing / fruit juice & vegetable blending diet.  I dropped from my all time high of 380lbs down to 311lbs.  However, like almost all of my other attempts to lose weight, the real effort is spent in keeping the weight off (not just losing it).  I had hoped to gain around a pound a month for the next five years before having to worry about losing weight again.  Unfortunately, things have not gone to plan and I have gained most of the weight back in less than one year.
In the spirit of “never say die(t)”, I am now trying again.  This time I will be trying the Alternate Day Fast (ADF) technique.  More precisely, I will trying the “modified” ADF.  In a “standard” ADF, you alternate between days you eat and days you fast.  The “fast” day is not a “true” fast day as I’ve always understood it.  Basically, females are allowed 500 calories and males are allowed 700 calories on your Fast days.  On the “Feast” Days, you can eat anything you want and as much as you want.  Obviously, you should approach this with some reason, but as near as I can tell, “common sense” is not a requirement.  If you lack it (common sense), you will simply slow the process of weight loss, but you still will not stop / end it.
In the modified ADF (MADF), I will be trying to stick to either a single large salad in the evening (between 4pm and 6pm), or a series of three smaller “meals” during a 8 hour window (typically between 10am and 6pm).  Inside and outside of the window, I can have as much water, coffee and tea as I want.  I will NOT, however, be counting calories on either day.  The coffee and tea are black (with no cream), but that is not a requirement.  If, some day, I want cream, I will have it.  Basically, I am severely reducing calories on alternating days and eating normally on alternating days.
On a typical juicing fast I would normally lose about 18 to 20 pounds in my first ten days of the fast.  Most of this would be water weight and stomach content.  I estimate between seven and ten pounds minimum (and probably closer to 15lbs).  In this case my “real” loss would be the difference – between five and ten pounds.  To date (today is ADF:9-5), I have lost about eight(8) pounds.  This is actual “loss”, because I am not emptying my stomach and I am, in fact, maintaining my stomach contents (by eating normally every other day).  It is possible the loss could still be mostly water, but I will not be able to determine that for at least a few more days (if not weeks).  I do note that my hands and feet no longer feel swollen in the mornings when I get out of bed.
My goal for this “exercise” (lifestyle change) is to consistently lose 1.5 to 2 pounds per week for at least the next five months.  5months X 4weeks X 2pounds = 40 pounds of weight loss by the middle of June.  After that, I will evaluate whether I need to be stricter / looser or whatever…  This is a completely arbitrary “deadline” and I anticipate I’ll know if the MADF is working or not within the next 30 days.  You may have noticed in the last paragraph I said I’ve lost 8lbs in this first week.  I am expecting this will have been mostly water loss weight, but in any case, I am well over my goal for the week.  This means I will need to have more than my normal amount of calories tomorrow (during my “feast” day).  Losing weight too quickly risks the body slipping into “famine” mode and lowering my Basil Metabolic Rate (BMR) which will only make future losses more difficult.
Starting information:  Age – 63; weight: 355lbs on Day 1; 366lbs on Day 2; waist size: 55.5″ at my belly-button.  My “ideal” maximum weight for my height: 181lbs.  My healthy waist size s/b: 35-36″ at my belly-button.
Based on my height and weight, my “Inactive BMR” is: 2,434 calories per day;  my “Lite Activity BMR” is: 3,347 calories per day.  Generally, we all need to reduce calories 3,500 to lose 1 pound per week.  So, if I have less than 1,000 calories on my fast days and 3,347 on my feast days, I should lose between 1 and 3 pounds each week.  Easy, peasy…
Additional info:  During my last juice fast I struggled to get a consistent reading on my scale.  It was during the summer, so I would be in t-shirt, shorts and barefoot for my morning weigh-in.  I tried to stand a specific way to get a consistent reading, but it was difficult because I had to balance on the scale to do so.  It is now winter and my house is too cold to wander around in shorts and barefoot, so I get up and get dressed now.  This introduces another set of uncontrolled / un-recorded variables: different tops (sweat shirts), different shoes, and different pants.  Since I am too lazy to get dressed just to weigh myself in the morning and then change to what I will really wear that day, I will be letting it all sort itself out in the wash.  More precisely, I’m going to let it even itself out over time.  Although I am weighing myself every day, the main factor I will use for judging success is the weight every eighth day.  Up, down or no change.
I will be recording my weight two ways: 1) HIGH – standing with my knees slightly bent, feet flat but with my weight on my toes; and, 2) LOW – standing with knees straight (but not locked), feet flat but with my weight on my heels.  I have noted my scale can show a variance of 12lbs between these two methods.  In future posts, I will be stating my “HIGH” weight.  On my daily account of “Sweat Equity” (see tab at top of the page), I will list both and also other specific data I track (walks, sleep, feelings, etc.)
So, I will not be counting calories and I will not be on any strict exercise regimen.  I do walk my dog each morning for 30-60 minutes, but it is at a leisurely pace so she can smell the outside world.  We are not walking for a land speed record.  I will be going to the gym because I like to.  This means a couple of times per week with no set day or duration.  I will (generally) not post every day about this (MADF) process.  I will try to post often, though.  I am learning a lot about eating, fasting, exercise and a host of other topics which I am finding interesting and I plan to use this forum to record my observations (LOL – what else is new?).  This is for my benefit more than for any of my readers.  A personal journal, as it were…
Just a last comment on “title of post” nomenclature:  “ADF: Day 9:5” will tell you (me) this post is about the diet (“ADF”).  It will normally be my second post of the day.  If you are not interested, have a nice day and come back soon.  If you are interested in my notes / thoughts, “Day #:#” indicates the total number of days and (at least for now) the second number indicates a “fast” day (odd number) or a “feast” day (even number).  That will let you know if I’m writing while hungry or full (LOL).
Please feel free to leave any questions below in the comments.  I will try to respond to all comments, and who knows, your question may end up the basis for a future post.
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On This Day In:
2018 #DumbDonald: Start With Hearing What You Don’t Want Said
2017 The Press Is NOT The Enemy
2016 It Ain’t Easy
(Leap Year 29th) Or Try To, Anyway…
(Leap Year 29th) Circles Within Circles
2015 A Series Of Funerals
2014 And Your Point Is?
2013 Infinitely Care
2012 In My Room
(Leap Year 29th) Stingray – TV Series Review (This is my most popular post since starting my blog – hands down! It still draws hits almost every week. The hits seem to come mostly from Central Europe. I guess the show must be in syndication there.)
(Leap Year 29th) A Single Thread
2011 Lyrical Mixture
Teaching = Translating
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The end of day eleven and the start of day twelve…
Morning weight: 356lbs.  The scale actually read under 355lbs, but that can not possibly be correct so I am just subtracting 2lbs from yesterday’s weight total.  That’s 24lbs of total weight loss at the end of 11 days.  Obviously, this much weight loss is not sustainable.  IMHO.  It is only possible when you are experiencing rapid weight loss due to elimination of waist in your stomach.  In any case, my expectation is to lose about 1lb per day.  I’m sure the law of diminishing returns will kick in soon and it will much more difficult to lose 2lbs, let alone 3 to 5lbs in a single day.  I guess I know more tomorrow.
Another bad night for sleep.  We were still tired from the prior night, so we went to bed early.  11:00pm  —  Yes, I know, but that’s early for us.  It didn’t help.  Hil fell straight to sleep and I tossed for and hour before falling to sleep.  I then woke up at 3am.  I tossed for another hour (until 4:00am).  When I could not go back to sleep, I decided to get up and read.  I read some emails, played around on my blog and then finally walked the dog at 7am.  The sky was (is still) grey and full of smoke from the wildfires up north.  The sun was bright red and so diffuse you could look directly at it for a second or two (without seeming to hurt your eyes).
I got in my hour of treading water at the pool and upped the twisting motion to four sets of 100 (4X100).  I expect I may get up to 10 sets if I keep practicing.  I’m thinking of naming the twisting motion “agitator”, as I feel like the agitator in a cloth’s washer.  And it sure does make one puff.  It’s kind of like a sprint.
Once again, too lazy to make veggie juice.  I got by on mixed fruit juice, but it is waaaayyy too sweet and doesn’t leave me feeling anywhere near as “clean” inside at my veggie juices.  I am committing to making another bunch of veggie juice (swamp juice) tomorrow.  Ideally, that will get me through 14 days / 2 weeks (this Friday).
We’ll see.  Day by day…
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On This Day In:
2017 Why Don’t You Tell Us What You Really Think?
2016 Discontent
2015 Do You Know Me?
Appetite For Life Update
2014 Tough Journalism
2013 Things I’ve Learned
2012 Abstainer, n.
2011 Rain, Rain, Rain
Test Your Strength
2009 End the mistakes…

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The end of day ten and the start of day eleven…
Morning weight:  358lbs.  We went to bed late last night, so I ended up with a bit of a disrupted sleep.  Consequence:  tired and sleepy all day.  This is what happens when life gets in the way…
I wanted to start working out a bit today, but I was just too tired.  I ended up trying to do a bit of maintenance on our front door.  That tuckered me out instead of a workout.  For some reason the door’s started scraping the bottom against the floor runner.  I popped the door off and shaved it a bit with my hand plane.  It works better, but it’s still not right.  The problem is that it is a right pain to put the door back on the hinges to test.  The result was I’ll have to do a bit more shaving tomorrow when I have a better attitude.  (LOL)
My hour in the pool was better than usual.  I’ve been trying to add in a hip twist to my treading water, but I haven’t been able to get the coordination right.  Today it kind of just clicked and I was able to do it.  The sensation is a mix between doing a crunch and a crossover knee kick.  I managed to do two sets of 50 and one of 100.  The only issue is that occasionally it seems to tweak my side / back.  All in all though, it feels like a very good waist tightening exercise.  I’ve got a bit of a streak going on my pool work.  I’ve gone four days on the run now.  I’ve been averaging 3-4 times a week since the start of June.  I’m sure life will get in the way soon.  It usually does when I start these exercise streaks.  (LOL)
All out of my veggie juice…  I have to make a fresh batch tomorrow.  I’ll drink it even if I don’t continue the juice fasting.  Day to day…  As I learned in Saudi:  “Slowly.  Slowly…”
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On This Day In:
2017 Could You Repeat The Question?
2016 Still Busy?
2015 Why, Just This Morning…
2014 Just Kindness
2013 Now Shaking
2012 Absurdity, n.
2011 Minor Changes
Things I’ve Learned From Life – Nana Carter
Acting Out

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The end of day nine and the start of day ten…
Hil and I picked up my mom and we went to church (like most every other Sunday).  While in church, I put my hands behind my back and I was able to touch my fingers together!  I turned to Hil and told her to “look see.”  It’s funny how some fairly insignificant things can end up making your whole day.
Morning weight:  360lbs.  That’s 20lbs of total weight off since beginning the fast and 10 “real” pounds in only nine days.  I’m still feeling pretty good.  My skin color and surface are starting to look better (to me anyway).  My forehead and cheeks feel smoother, softer and less puffy.  And, I’ve got no water retention in my fingers, hands, feet or ankles.
I had my first craving today.  My wife went out shopping and when she came home she told me she’d gone to Lucky’s instead of to Safeway and Lucky’s had the full rack of ribs we used to love to get at Safeway.   I suddenly had this image of a table set with a big serving plate of ribs, and side plates of corn on the cob, mashed potatoes, string beans, cornbread, and a serving bowl of coleslaw.  My immediate reaction was to start salivating.  LOL!!
Tomorrow I finish ten days.  That sounds like a long time to go without chewing.  Having gone 30 days before (multiple times), I know it really isn’t that long, but it will feel like an accomplishment.  Strangely, somehow “one week” sounds more significant to me.  Then it’s back to one day at a time and seeing if I want to go on to 14 days / two weeks.  Time will tell…
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On This Day In:
2017 Hopefully, I’m Good Company
2016 Maybe Not Most
2015 Differences That Matter
2014 But Sometimes It Takes A Village
2013 Laughter > Grief
2012 Pioneers
2011 It Is Free

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The end of day seven and the start of day eight…
One week done!!  Yippie!  Goal accomplished!
Yesterday evening was difficult, but only from a self-discipline perspective.  The thing about juice fasting is if you do it for any length of time, you are bound to run into a “LIFE” event.  Usually, it’s holidays and birthdays, but sometimes it’s something else.  Last evening was something else…
My eldest daughter has decided to run for a political office (non-partisan, but she still has to get elected).  Last evening was her campaign kick-off event held at a bar(!).  Technically, it was at a brewery, but I’m not sure that’s any better.  So, there was lots of socializing and everyone was having a beer or glass of wine and the event hosted a taco buffet (with a plate of cookies at each table).  Anyway, I toughed it out.  My wife and I are so proud of our little girl (not so little anymore), you know we just couldn’t miss it.  And, yes, my wife was very sympathetic to my fasting – as she sent me to the bar to get her a pint of beer.
I have enough veggie juice to make it through the weekend, if I choose to continue.  So far I am doing just that.  Drum roll please…  Morning weight: 362lbs.  That’s down from 380lbs on 20 July 2018.  Again, discounting stomach and extra water weight (10lbs), that’s 8lbs lost in 7 days!  In case, you’re wondering why I am always using 380lbs as the starting weight even though it wasn’t the actual start date of the fast, it’s because that’s the date I hit the (my) personal worst.  Between then and 27 July (mid-morning) when I started the fast, that is the weight I was bouncing around.  378 to 380.  The “actual” weight on the start day was 380lbs.
Impressions:  at the end of 7 days, my muffin top and my saddle bags are smaller, my stomach looks a bit flatter and I’ve lost some of the puffiness under my eyes.  I’m not deluding myself.  I’m still 360lbs+ and still morbidly obese.  But…  The main thing is:  I feel terrific for having met a goal.  This doesn’t mean I’m done.  It does mean I’m proud of myself for having stuck it out.  The doubt (“Can I do this?“) from eight days, seven days and six days ago seems a long ways away right now.  So, I am happily half-way through day eight and I know I can stop any time / any day because I’ve completed the first step to getting started on my food / lifestyle-change journey.  I did it!
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On This Day In:
2017 A Good Habit
2016 The Minds Of Trumpism
2015 Expressing Nonsense
2014 A Real Fight
2013 Unravelling
2012 I Resolve
2011 Practice, Practice, Practice
2009 Phoenix Trip (Sept ’09)

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The end of day six and the start of day seven…
The last 24 hours was a bad day which may have had nothing to do with the fast.
Yesterday felt like a real good day.  I felt good getting up.  I walked the dog and even went for a late morning jog to end day 5.  After noon, I started day six still feeling pretty good.  I even went for an evening swim (tread water for 60min).  Except while in the pool, my heart started palpitating.  This happened multiple times during the time in the water.  When I got home, I took my blood pressure (BP&HR) and pulse and found I was in active AFib.  Generally, this means my heart is beating erratically.  In my case, too rapidly (accelerated) and not with regular timing (sinus rhythm).
This is all quite “normal” for me.  I tend to go into and out of AFib often if not regularly.  Most times I feel the palpitations for a minute or two and then they go away.  This time they didn’t…  Go away.  In my particular form of AFib, my heart doesn’t accomplish a full beat.  It flutters.  This means I have “stale” blood in my heart and / or in my cardiovascular system.  When blood doesn’t circulate, it tends to clot after a bit of time –  usually about 4 to 7 minutes.  If the clot stays in your heart it may block other blood and then you have a heart attack.  If the clot moves or a chunk of it breaks off and runs around your body, then lodges, you have a stroke.   Depending on where the clot lodges, that’s how serious the stroke is.
What does one do about this?  Well, I mostly wait.  I wait to see if I will get additional or continuing symptoms.  I wait to see if I drop back into normal heart rhythm on my own.  If I get more symptoms or I’m in AFib for too long, I go to the Emergency Room (ER).  This is what happened to me in the last go round.  The rhythm never reverted back to normal and it lasted almost three days.  When I finally went in, the doctors ended up giving me an electro-cardio inversion treatment.  Basically, they electrocuted me to stop and restart my heart with the hope that: 1)  it will restart; and, 2)  that the heart with come back with a normal pulse rhythm.  Mine did.
Day 6’s palpitations (the AFib) lasted all through the night and finally ended about 4:30 pm this afternoon (into Day 7).  The good news is I have been checking my BP&HR almost every hour since then and it’s now after 9:30pm and I’m still in normal sinus rhythm.  So, it looks like I’ve dodged the bullet another time…
Tomorrow at noon is the end of day 7 of my juice fast.  This is the goal I set myself when I started this (juice fast) last week.  This morning’s weight:  363lbs.  That’s down 2lbs from yesterday where I stalled and didn’t lose any weight from the prior day.  As of this morning, that’s 17lbs down from the starting weight of 380lbs.  And, again, subtracting out the “assumption” weight (10lbs), I’ve now lost 7lbs in six days.  I am feeling good and have enough veggie juice to last me at least until Monday which would make it a round 10 days of juice fasting.  I think from here on I will take it one day at a time and just see how far I can go.  At the minute, I feel like I can make the 10 day mark with no problem…
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On This Day In:
2017 The Soul Of Victory
2016 Getting Furrowed?
2015 Pretty Good So Far
2014 Still Learning?
There Ain’t No Thing Like Me, ‘Cept Me!
2013 Little Lives
2012 Evolution
2011 Excellence At Performance = 10,000 Hours
2009 A Brief Poem…
Crater Lake Trip with James

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The end of day five and the start of day six…
Some days are just easy…  Like a cool summer breeze when you’re sitting in the shade on a hot afternoon.
This morning I woke up feeling fit an energized.  This is a normal and expected feeling after the first few days of veggie juice fasting.  Something “clicks”, and you start to feel terrific.  I got up at 8am and took the dog out for her walk.  Still feeling my oats, around 11am I went out for a jog.  2 miles in 34 minutes.  Not far, and definitely not fast.  As a matter of fact, I felt like I was in treacle.  I felt like I was absolutely plodding along, so I was surprised when I finished under 40 minutes.  I didn’t start sweating until the last lap around the block (2 miles = 5 laps X .4 miles).  When I got back in the house I started pouring sweat.  Anticipating a bit, as soon as I got in the door I got a 32oz bottle of ice water to re-hydrate and cool down.
I then had a couple of bottles of juice while watching a movie with Hil, before going out at 6:30pm for my hour of treading water.  Another bottle of juice and one of water and I’m done for the day / evening.  And before I forget…  NO weight change!  Still 365lbs.  If I hadn’t dropped 3lbs the day before I “might” be upset.  But then again, 1) I’m using an analogue scale, and, 2)  I know from past experience that the weight loss isn’t a straight line down.  When the losses start to decrease, you have to get your head ready for the 1 or 2 pound increase coming from water retention / fluctuation.  So, I’m good…
Issues:  No hunger and no light-headedness.  I lost track of a sentence twice while talking to Hil, had a general sense of fatigue when I was making my veggie blends in the afternoon, and, I got mild palpitations while swimming which have continued into the evening.  No secondary symptoms, so all I can do is monitor and hope they go away.  If it doesn’t clear up by morning, I’ll have to go to the ER.  Ah, the joys or asymptomatic AFib.  Oh, yeah.  I made enough veggie juice to easily see me through Saturday, so I can stretch the juicing fast out to 10 days if I feel like it on Friday.  Friday (morning) is when I finish my 7th day – the planned duration.
After thoughts:  Last night I dreamed about a big plate of SOS.  For those of you unfamiliar with the finest of American dining, that’s “Shit-on-a-Shingle”, which is also known as ground beef in gravy served over toast.  I make mine (the gravy) with mushroom soup and added flour (for thickening), with half an onion and a handful of mushroom.  I saute half of the onions and mushrooms before adding them.  The second half of each I add at the last moment, before serving so they’re fresher in the gravy.  Earlier today, while jogging, instead of going back to SOS, all I could think of was one of the Fat Smash dinners of rice, pinto beans and a heaping portion of bok choy.  Go figure…  I always fancied myself a ribs, mashed potatoes and corn on the cob man.  LOL.  Maybe, there is hope for me and a lifestyle change.  (Naaa…)
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On This Day In:
2017 Duty
2016 Still Gaining
2015 Filling Gaps
2014 Even In Our Sleep
2013 Passion Is Always Personal
2012 And You Are?
2011 Innate Talent

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