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[This post is a LONG one…  If you are not interested in diets or my specific notes on a diet / lifestyle / fasting, feel free to leave now and come back some other day.  You’ve been warned…  (LOL!)
This post is one of a series of posts about my current diet / lifestyle choice of performing 40 hour water fasts to try to lose fat and get healthier.  These posts are not intended as medical advice as I have next to no formal medical training.  The posts are based on my personal experiences / opinions and are purely anecdotal.  Please consult your personal doctor or other REAL health care professional before starting any diet or exercise regime.    —    KMAB]
This morning I completed my fourth 40 hour water fast.  I hope at some point I’ll start looking forward to them.  So far, they are more of just a grind (before I start).  Once I get going, they are not too bad.  The time does go by more quickly than you would think – and it “really” is just one day.  Then, you have “effectively” two days to eat.
General reaction…  I’m feeling fine.  Maybe a little healthier, even.  I’m not losing any significant amounts of weight (qualified statement), yet.  When I do veggie-juice fasting, I tend to lose a pound a day (sometimes two pounds).  This makes jumping on the scale every morning VERY psychologically encouraging / re-enforcing.  This method of fasting (40hr water fast) is not “intended” (by me) to lose weight as much as it is for losing fat.  The weight will come off as a by-product of fat reduction and is itself not the primary objective / goal.
The morning before my first 40 hours (Tuesday 19 April), I weighed in at 355lbs.  Today, I’ve had my second consecutive day at 350lbs.  This is 5lbs in roughly 11 days.  That is actually excessive!  The short term goal is .5 to 1lb per week.  This rate is meant to ensure I don’t over stimulate my metabolic response to a lack of calories.  For anyone who doesn’t know:  a prolonged shortage of daily caloric intake stimulates a “starvation reaction” in your body which results in a lowered metabolic rate (BMR).  This lowered BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) means you will burn fewer calories to maintain / retain as much energy (fat stores) as possible.  Your body doesn’t know you’re fasting.  It thinks you’re starving and therefore it starts “shutting down” / reducing cellular activities to extend the calories (fat) it knows it has.
More specifically (as I understand it…):
Triglycerides (in your bloodstream) provide energy for warmth, but they also provide energy for all of the other functions of the cell.  We all have cells, called “fat cells” (brown and white) whose job it is to extract “extra” triglycerides and cholesterol from the blood and convert them into “true” fat for longer term energy use when called on / needed.  First we burn the energy in the cell.  Then we burn the energy in the bloodstream.  Then we burn the energy in the fat cells.  The body – as an organism and as individual cells – is continuously monitoring how much energy is available and sending out messages (via chemicals / hormones – mainly insulin from our pancreas) about the needs for energy.  There is a spectrum of reaction.  It is not a true “light-switch” – on or off.
Fasting:  I start each fast period at 5pm…  (Info about hours in the fasting process is from various fasting websites.  All times should be taken as “about / around”, and not as absolutes.  No one’s body reactions function as on-off switches set to fixed timers.)
12 hours.  Food consumed has been burned. …  (to me 5am)
14 hours.  Body has converted to using stored fat as energy. …  (to me 7am)
16 hours.  Body starts to ramp up the fat burning.  …  (to me 9am)
18 hours.  Human Growth Hormone starts to skyrocket.  …  (to me 11am)
24 hours.  Autophagy begins.  …  (to me 5pm)
36 hours.  Autophagy 300% increase.   …  (to me 5am)
48 hours.  Autophagy increases 30% more.   …  (to me, 40 hours ends at 9am)
72 hours.  Autophagy maxes out.   …  (I don’t go here / this long.)
During autophagy, the cells remove unwanted molecules and dysfunctional parts.  Sometimes, autophagy destroys some of these molecules and parts.  Other times, the cell recycles these parts into new components.  The term “autophagy” derives from the Ancient Greek for “self-eating.”
Depending on the individual’s metabolism, significant autophagy may take two to four days of fasting in our bodies.  Autophagy is believed to begin when glucose and insulin levels drop considerably.  Animal studies have shown evidence of autophagy after 24 hours of fasting, which starts peaking at around 48 hours of fasting.  (These last three sentences are “evolving” science.  I have not found a definition of “significant autophagy”.  As near as I can tell, we don’t know the trigger levels or the peak point(s).  I think there is likely to be a spectrum for both.)
A key sign of autophagy is reduced appetite.  It’s likely due to changed levels of hormones like glucagon and insulin.  Specifically, levels of glucagon tend to increase during autophagy.  Glucagon helps manage your blood sugar levels and has been shown to suppress appetite.
Cells use autophagy to get rid of damaged proteins and organelles.  Autophagy “may” counteract “some of” the negative effects of ageing on the body.  Despite advertising claims, I don’t believe this (anti-ageing claim) is settled science.
While it may be difficult to properly measure autophagy, here are some signs of autophagy:  Low blood glucose – When your blood sugar drops, your body raises cortisol, growth hormones, and ketones.  This can enable the beginning of autophagy.  Elevated ketones – as your blood sugar lowers, your ketones elevate.  You can buy strips over the counter (OTC) for home use in measuring ketones in urine.  You can also get OTC blood meters.  I do not currently use either method for testing and am not planning to.  I do get blood workups prior to my doctor appointments at least twice a year.
Because you are fasting and you need a source of energy, your body will use stored fat.  Ketones are chemicals made in your liver.  They are known as “endogenous” ketones because they’re produced by your body.  Your liver turns fat into ketones, then sends the ketones into your bloodstream.  Your muscles and other tissues can use the ketones (energy molecules) for fuel similarly to glucose / sugar.
You produce ketones when you don’t have enough of the hormone insulin in your body to turn sugar (or “glucose”) into energy.  An insulin response (increase) occurs whenever we eat.  The level of response varies, but seems to relate to the amount of sugar molecules in the food.  Insulin regulates the use / burning of carbohydrates, fats and protein by promoting the absorption of glucose / sugar molecules from the blood into liver, fat and skeletal muscle cells.
All of this is kind of a circular explanation and very much a lay-person’s explanation for how (I understand) our bodies work.
Basically, AFTER 72 hours, your body has reached the maximum RATE of self-healing / anti-ageing.  Depending on the amount of fat you have in your body, you will continue to burn FAT (and other tissue) until your body chemistry says “I think we’re starving!”  At that point, your metabolic rate will start to fall as the body first tries to reduce energy consumption.  If that fails (you don’t resume eating), the body will begin to digest muscles and organs for their energy and proteins to protect the most critical body functions (mainly the heart and kidneys).  At this point, fasting for fat / weight loss is self-defeating, because you are losing proportionately more non-fat cells than fat cells.
Because I cut off my water fasts at 40 hours, I “only” have a maximum of 4 hours at the 300% increase rate in each cycle.  It remains to be seen how long it will take my body to adapt a long term response to this fasting regimen.  According to the fasting proselytizers, I (we) can continue the cycle indefinitely until I (we) reach a desired weight / fat level and then I / you simply play with the number of hours between cycles to establish a personal maintenance level.  I guess I’ll find out…
In the meantime, my plan is to continue my current alternating cycles for another 10 days to see how much weight I lose.  If it continues at this rate (5lbs lost over 10 days), I will extend the number of hours between fast cycles by 24 hours to slow down the loss (goal is .5lb to 1lbs per week).  Remember, the “goal” is fat reduction, NOT weight loss, while maintaining my metabolic rate (BMR).  This will (hopefully) maximize fat loss, weight loss and health all at the same time…
Two final points:  1)  Bile is stored in the gall bladder.  I had my gall bladder removed 10 years ago.  The body uses bile to emulsify (mix) fat in with water (blood) for transport around the body.  The gall bladder does not make bile.  Bile is made in the liver (like ketones).  Bile is made continuously and excess is stored in the gall bladder for quick release when we ingest fatty foods.  Bile use (gall bladder) and production (liver) is increased when we eat fatty foods, but it is a delayed response.  I have not been able to determine how this (use or production) effects fasting per se.  I do know if I “binge” on something fatty on breaking fast, I will have indigestion and get the trots – at least that’s what these first four cycles have shown.  Your response to renewed eating may vary.  And…
2)  I have seen numerous videos about “one-meal-a-day” and “alternate-day” fasting, which state most people cannot eat sufficient calories on an eat-day to make up for the calories not eaten on a fast day.  This is NOT true for me.  For whatever reason, I seem to be more than capable of making up for calories missed over a single day of fasting.  I spent almost two years trying OMAD, intermittent timed fasting and alternate day fasting.  All three seem to work (for me) for maintenance (slowed regaining) periods, but none of them worked for extended weight loss.  In other words:  they would help me maintain a plateau, but they didn’t help me continue to lose weight.  I should restate:  my goals for those diets / fasts / lifestyles were weight reduction, not fat loss;  and, both the intermittent timed fasts and the alternate day fasts were severe calorie restriction diets (days) – typically between 500 – 700 calories, NOT water fasts (days) – 0 – or near 0 calories.  I NEVER got to the 18hr (let alone the 24hr) mark without eating something.
Why do either of these points matter?  1)  because I am trying to reduce body fat, so it seems reasonable (to me) to assume fat transport is a factor.  And, 2)  because while 0 and near 0 days sounds more extreme than restriction, at least they offer an explanation for why you need to do it.  It appears physiological time (time between meals) is at least as important as calories.  This is an interesting wrinkle for me.
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On This Day In:
2021 Our Identity Crisis Continues
There’s No Hiding Place
2020 In Need Of Concerted Action
2019 Anything / Everything
2018 Touching A Nerve
Good Fences Make Good Neighbors
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2017 Did I See You In Chapter 13?
2016 As I Recall
2015 Less And More Irritation
2014 That Marvelous Feeling
2013 Exceptional
2012 A Wild And Crazy Believer
2011 A Lack Of Scarcity
The Joy Of Prevention

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You are a fish swimming in the ocean of God.
    —    Sai Baba
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On This Day In:
2021 Republican Big Lies On The Internet
What Did They Say?
2020 We Are All Fish
Should We Take Another Reading?
2019 A Dynamic And Adaptable System
2018 Speak Your Mind
2017 And I Thought It Was Just Me Getting Old
2016 One For Whole
2015 A Good Present
2014 And Your Point Is?
2013 Our Never-Ending Task
Furloughed
2012 More Mature Than I Thought
2011 Outlaw’s Music
Can Do!

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The end of day six and the start of day seven…  Today completes the first week of blend fasting.
Morning weight:  362lbs.  (on Day 7)
I am down / down “2/11”.  As in, 2lbs down from yesterday and 11lbs down from my fasting start weight:  373lbs (the morning of Day 1).
Yesterday, was a peculiar day.  I had to give a blood sample in the morning for a doctor’s appointment on Friday.  This meant I had to “fast” (no eating of drinking of my blend) for 12 hours.  I stopped about 9pm the night before.  I got up and walked the dog about 9am, so I was on time.  I got to the office about 10:15am and gave the sample a little after 11am.  I almost never make an appointment to give blood.  I just bring a book or read email on my cell.  In this case, I did both.  Some time this week, I’ll get my results with my cholesterol and triglycerides levels and the doctor will review them with me to see where I stand.  Hopefully, both will be down (at least slightly) and I’ll be able to avoid any statins.  I was taking them in pill form for a number of years and been having a negative reaction (muscle pains and joint stiffness), but my cardiologist feels I will need to go back on something.  He’s recommending some new drug (new to me) which is administered via shot.   I’m not keen on drugs or shots (in particular), so I have another reason to make a go of fasting and losing weight.
After giving blood, I had a shot of OJ and then went out to mow the front lawn.  That took about an hour.  I settled in to drink at least a quart of my blend.  I watched a bit of TV and read a bit and then took a nap for about 2hrs.  After that, I watched some Netflix and then went to the pool for an evening swim (60 minutes / breast stroke).  I felt like it was exhilarating but (again) I tired quickly (after about 30 minutes).  So, it was another gut check to finish the time.  I just set a nice relaxing pace and got through it…  I can pretty easily do 40 lengths (25 yard lengths) in under 55 minutes, so I say I’m doing 42 to 44 lengths an hour.  That’s a little more than one half mile (36 lengths).  It may not sound great to any young readers, but I started out in April taking between 75 and 80 minutes to do just 40 lengths, so I’ve made reasonable progress for an ol’ geezer.
Today is actually Day 7 of the fast and tomorrow I’ll be posting a photo of my progress.  Tonight I’ll make a decision about going for another week or just going day to day.  At this moment, I’m feeling great, so I’m leaning towards committing to a second full week and then switching.  The thing about “committing” is if I fall off the wagon, I’ll start beating myself up about it, whereas “day to day” is just until yesterday.  I know it’s psychologically wrong, but that’s the way (formerly) A+ personality types think.  “Set a goal.  MUST make it.  MUST make it.  MUST aaauurrgghh!”
Why Studying Dieting Doesn’t Work…
On this journey I’ve struggled with dieting for most of my adult life.  I’ve almost always succeeded (for a while) in losing some weight, and then rebounded – sometimes slowly and sometimes quickly.  I’ve tried every diet plan I could reasonably afford, and almost all of them have worked (for a while).  For me, the problem has been, “What’s next?”  Sure, this or that diet works for a week or two, but what happens next?  I don’t want to “diet” forever.  This means over the last 20 years I’ve used “fasting” as my hack to a non-healthy eating lifestyle.  I either eat too much or I eat too frequently – or both.  For the longest time I’d felt this was some kind of psychological failure / adaptation on my part.  Although not poor while growing up, we certainly didn’t have the quality or quantity of food which I experienced when eating over at my friends houses.
It’s only in the last ten years I’ve thought maybe it’s not me with the problem.  Okay.  Yes, it is ME, but it’s not necessarily my brain’s (a lack of self-discipline) fault.  It’s not that I’m weak.  It’s that modern food is addicting and it’s promoted in advertising as a substitute for happiness.  I don’t mean psychologically addicting, by the way, although there is definitely some of that, too.  I mean modern food is full of chemicals (mainly) – sugar and flavor enhancers – which are meant to stimulate our appetites without giving us a sense of fullness (to tell us to stop stuffing our faces / stomachs).  I mean that modern food is physically addicting.  (Our stomachs, in fact, have sensors which tell our brain “we’re full, stop eating for a while”.  This is why drinking water before eating somewhat deadens our appetites.  The water – which has zero calories – takes up space and generates a sense of fullness in the stomach.)
The human body has served us well for thousands of years and until fairly recently, obesity (and in particular morbid obesity) has been rare.  The trend over the last ten to twenty years has been to blame what we eat (junk food / fast food), how much we eat (portions and frequency), and, everybody’s favorite culprit:  High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS).  The problem we (as individuals and as a society) have is correlation is not causation and food science is closer to a “soft” science (like psychology) than it is to a “hard” science (like chemistry).  This is because we have little to no ability to create valid controls for a scientific test.  The primary variable is the human body and, despite appearances (we all “seem” pretty much the same), in fact, we have wildly different individual reactions to different types of food AND we have no longitudinal studies (that I am aware of) which show the same person has the same reactions to different types of food across their individual life spans.  What longitudinal studies we do have tend to be voluntary, subjective and self-reported.  We are, therefore, highly dependent on the person reporting to provide accurate and honest information / data for our analysis.  We then use statistics and hope accuracy and honesty will level out under our Bell Curve.
More of my random thoughts to come…
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On This Day In:
2021 A Little Forgetfulness
Thoughts While Driving To Work
2020 Making Potential Come True
Predating / Predicting Nerdhood
2019 Duration Unknown
Day 6: Almost There
2018 Just Trying To Be Me
Day 39: Half This Game Is 90% Mental
2017 A Letter To 45
Some Small Place
2016 REDs
2015 Cities
2014 Still
2013 Dare = Hope
2012 Check My Math
2011 Just Asking

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Last summer I started to take advantage of our housing association swimming pool.  Mostly, I brushed up on my treading water with what I hoped would be low impact exercise.  I learned how to tread water when I was living alone (before my family arrived) in Saudi Arabia (way back in 1998).  Back then, I would tread water for up to two-and-a-hours.   It’s not that I couldn’t go longer.   It’s just that it got pretty boring by then.
Anyway, last summer I got back up to 90 minutes or so just treading water.  Towards the end, I switched to a breast-stroke and I got up to about 90 minutes of that as well.  One problem I then had was the constant fogging of my swimming goggles.  (I didn’t wear goggles for treading water.)  Basically, I had to pause ever few laps and rinse out the haze in my goggles.  During the winter I did a search on cures and (lo and behold) I found one.   “No More Tears” baby shampoo / body wash.
Before going to the pool, put a drop in each goggle lens, smear it in with your finger, and then rinse thoroughly – or at least until it stops sudsing-up.  After that, don’t touch the lens.  Just put them on when you get to the pool and your off.  I don’t know how long the “de-fogging” lasts.   It’s worked for me for an hour maximum, three times now, so I’m satisfied it works.  AND, it’s a LOT less expensive than purchasing swimming defogging spray, goes a lot farther (you get more for your money),  and, no, I have no idea if the “real” spray does anything to your eyes.  (But I assume not.)  I repeat the process every time I go swimming, just prior to getting into the car.
I don’t know if it matters but I will mention our pool is fresh water (not salt-water) and is heated to 83°F.  If anyone tries this (or already does this), let me know if it works for you, too.
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On This Day In:
2018 Lost Time
2017 Are You Talking To Me?
2016 Here, Desire Is Purified
2015 Hopefully Just Visiting
2014 Fond Memory?
2013 Distress, Hope, Trust
2012 Creating Interlocking Fragility
2011 Four Stories And A Gospel
What Have You Burned Lately?

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You don’t drown by falling in the water;  you drown by staying there.
    —    Edwin Louis Cole
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On This Day In:
2018 Defining Characteristic
2017 Just Asking
2016 Still A Burden
15 And Counting
2015 All A Game
2014 Two Thoughts
2013 RIP – Dear Abby
Half-Life Problems
2012 To The Soul…
2011 Reverted!!

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Today was the last day of the season for our neighborhood (outdoor) pool.  We’ve lived in the area since 2000 and I’ve never used the pool more than a dozen times in a single year.  Most years, it’s been less than five times.  Most years it’s been zero.  At any rate, I told myself:  “Once I’ve retired, I’m going to use the pool.”  Well, this year I’ve been 94 times and only once was for less than an hour.  The vast majority of times I’ve only been treading water for the hour and then (maybe) doing a few lengths to stretch out at the end.  The last month, I’ve done breast stroke for the hour – almost exclusively.  I must admit I’ve really enjoyed both the treading and the breast stroke.  And now I’m looking forward to next year and hoping for a mild spring so the pool can open in early / mid-May…  Maybe next year I’ll learn how to free-style…
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On This Day In:
2021 Sustainable Development
Duke, Duke, Duke
2020 #IncompetentDonald Is A Clear And Present Danger
VOTE – “We The People” Can Save America
2019 Why #45 Is Fated To Endanger Our National Security
2018 Dehydrated
Dehydrated II
2017 And Some Of Us Have Books
2016 I See No Proof
2015 Whither Tea Party?
2014 Nothing Is Known Absolutely
2013 Decoration Time
2012 The Beatitudes
2011 Good Fences Make Good Neighbors
2010 Back On The Asphalt
No Sweep – Rangers Win Game 3 by 4 to 2
Greek Myths For Kids

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The end of day twenty-eight and the start of day twenty-nine…
Morning weight:  323lbs.
Finally, a 2lbs loss!  I am now down “50/57”.  As in, 50lbs down from my fasting start weight: 373lbs, and 57lbs down from my highest weight ever (two days before I started the fast): 380lbs.  Today’s loss is a 2lbs loss, down from 325lbs yesterday.
In my past fasting attempts, I’ve never had a four or five pound loss after day three.  This is because up until then (day 3) I was losing stomach content and / or “extra” water.  I just finished three consecutive days of 4 to 5 pound losses at the “almost” four week mark.  Today’s loss breaks that streak and, strangely enough, I feel relieved.  I honestly felt if it continued for another couple of days, I would have to break the fast just to stop that kind of ridiculous (unsustainable and probably unhealthy) losses.  They were beyond my experience and therefore I did not consider them “normal” (whatever normal is meant to be).
Today I got my first low sugar headache of this fast.  At first I wasn’t sure what was happening, but I guess the large losses were almost a precursor to the headache.  The cure was to drink more veggie juice and more fruit juice.  This wasn’t the first time in my life I’ve had this happen, but I was still concerned until the headache passed.  I then spent the rest of the day walking a fine line between over drinking and not drinking enough for energy.  My “normal” mid-day drink is 32oz of ice-water with an ounce of lemon concentrate.  The problem with this drink is that it quenches your hunger, but it doesn’t provide very many calories (almost none).  So I also added in 32oz of ginger / mint tea and apple juice.  After that, I felt much better.
Other news:  My wife is still recovering nicely from her surgery.  She was up most of the day and even managed to get out in front and back to water her gardens / plants.  And, at the pool, I managed to do seven straight laps of breast stroke – more or less without stopping.  I usually try to swim fast, but today I just tried to cruise through them and I was able to keep going with only a brief pause to turn around.  Normally, I take a minute or two to catch my breath between laps.  Smooth and easy was a lot easier and more fun.  I believe I will miss the pool when it closes for the season in October.
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On This Day In:
2017 Sea Worthy
2016 Rising Integration
2015 No Worries
2014 Devouring The Present
2013 But So Far…
Twice Moved
2012 Just Like Bubbles
2011 Caring and Driving
Achieve Greatly
2010 Unwise To Trust
Attitude
If The Mind Is Not Tired
Irrationally Crazy
2nd Pair – Shoe Review
Ahnu – Gesundheit!
2009 As for me…
Health Care Reform Now!!

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The end of day twenty-two and the start of day twenty-three…
Morning weight:  339lbs.
I am now down “34/41”.  As in, 34lbs down from my fasting start weight:  373lbs, and 41lbs down from my highest weight ever (two days before I started the fast):  380lbs.  Today’s loss is a 2lb loss, down from 341lbs yesterday.
My son (James) moved out of the house about seven years ago.  I “inherited” his bedroom.  Over the course of time I’ve turned it into another library storage room for my book collection and I’ve (slowly, slowly) added bits and pieces of workout equipment to make it into a mini-gym.  My wife has been in constant battle with me over this as she believes the room is her personal rent-a-space.  I routinely go in and find she’s moved something into “storage”.  I then have to find some way to organize the new items so I can still walk around and use the room as I want to.  LOL.  It’s a constant battle which I slowly win as she doesn’t care what I do with the things as long as she doesn’t have to see or dust them anymore.
Today I moved a bunch of my weights and barbells around in the room.  I laid down some more rubber floor pads.  (Almost the whole floor covered now.)  And, I (re-)setup my inversion table.  Because our housing association community pool was extremely busy today, I decided to pack in the swim and do some step-ups instead.  I cleared a bit of floor space, and did my 30 minutes.  (That was more than enough to raise a sweat and to remind me how old I am.)  I started using step-ups to workout way back in the 1990’s while we were living in Liverpool.  Step-ups are one of those routine exercises that benefit you by giving you a workout without taking you anywhere.  So you have ready access to as much water as you want and to a toilet if needed.  Just my cup of tea…
After the step-ups, I hopped up on “the rack” and gave it a flip for about five minutes.  I got “into” inversion therapy (“hanging”) back in the early 1980’s.  I had a partially slipped disc in my lower back when I was in high school and I spent a good deal of time in pain, which got substantially worse (severe, chronic and constant) when I left the Army and started getting out of shape.  I heard about hanging on TV one evening and I felt desperate enough to try anything (but surgery).  I went to a store which offered them.  I tried one.  Within five minutes my back “popped” and it felt like an exploding nova in the base of my spine.  And then, nothing…  Absolutely, no pain for the first time in close to four or five years.  I got off the demo machine, handed the man my plastic and I’ve owned and used an inversion table ever since.  Sometimes frequently.  Most times only occasionally (once or twice a year).  Either way, I’ve carried my tables to Europe and back again when we returned.  And, yes, I am a avid proponent, advocate, champion (etc.) for inversion / hanging.
Epiphany:  I just re-read the last paragraph and it just hit me how I’ve spent most of my late twenties and most of my fifties and early 60’s in pain.  Chronic and sometimes debilitating pain.  Between my pinched nerve in my lower back and my kidney and gall stones, I’ve been a mess!  LOL.  It’s amazing to me how adaptable the human mind is.  When you are in pain, it is all-consuming.  When you are not in pain, you can take time to smell the roses (forget about the thorns) and look forward to meeting the challenges of day to day living.  We really are strange creatures.  (Or at least I am.)
Apologies to anyone who came expecting to read about my fast.  Sometimes my thoughts wander…  To tell the truth, other than being a bit tired, it’s been an easy (boring) day – fast wise.  And I think that’s a good thing!
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On This Day In:
2017 Adrift In The Oval Office
Regrets – The Donald Failed The Test
2016 Just Ask “The Donald”
2015 Did You Pass On It?
2014 Even When It Ain’t, It Is
2013 Still Happens
2012 Possessing Eternity
2011 I Thought We Were Talking About Afghanistan

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The end of day twenty-one and the start of day twenty-two…
Morning weight:  341lbs.
I am now down “32/39”.  As in, 32lbs down from my fasting start weight: 373lbs, and 39lbs down from my highest weight ever (two days before I started the fast): 380lbs.  Today’s loss is a 2lb loss, down from 343lbs yesterday.  It also represents a +10% body weight loss from my highest ever weight (the week of / before I started this fast).
I am a creature of habit.  It makes feel comfortable to have an idea of what to expect each day.  Today was disruptive.  After walking my dog in the morning, I drove up to spend a few hours visiting my brother.  He is on dialysis four times a week for kidney failure and he also suffers from vertigo, so he isn’t able to get out and about much on his own.  I try to visit him at least every 4 to 6 weeks for a bit of in-the-flesh company.  This visit made the fast difficult because in order to stave off hunger I have to be able to drink regularly.  In order to drink regularly, I have to have ready access to a toilet.  My brother lives about a 45 minute drive away.  This means I can’t really drink until after I get there and I have to stop well before I’m leaving so I can make sure I’m “empty” before getting on the road to come back home.
I made it both ways without bladder issues (i.e. failure), but I wasn’t able to drink my normal amount of fluids.  This put me right on the edge of energy failure.  As I said, I got through it, but it left me physically exhausted.  Not physically tired or sleepy;  just sit on the couch and melt into the cushions exhausted…  And then I had to suck it up, have a drink to get my energy back up and go for my “swim”.  I try to go for a swim each day.  I don’t actually “swim” that much.  I tread water for an hour and then I try to do 5 or 6 laps with a kick board and / or breast stroke.  Except for toe touches, that’s the sum of my daily exercise.
Reactions:  Complete surprise!  I am now three weeks into a (planned) 7-day fast and I feel terrific.  What was meant to be a jump-start into a food / eating lifestyle change has evolved into a mini-achievement all its own.  I must admit this is both a surprise and unexpected.  A surprise because I feel so good after this amount of time.  Unexpected because I’ve lost so much weight.  As stated in previous posts, I have completed four 30-day fasts in my life and many shorter (10 days, 1 week, and 3 days) fasts, but I have never been this successful in losing weight.  As near as I can recall, on each of my 30-day fasts, I averaged about a pound a day and was never more than 30lbs in three weeks.  (In fact, 30lbs was usually my end of fast result.)  I also had much more frequent plateaus where I might not lose a pound a day and then “suddenly” drop 1 or 2 pounds.  This time around, 2 pounds a day seems to be an average loss.  Now, in fairness, my maximum weight (380lbs) was FAR more than any prior starting weight (by 50 to 100lbs), so I had a LOT more weight available to lose going into this fast.  Bottom line:  I’m expecting the law of diminishing returns to kick in any day and I’ll start having more 1 pound-a-day losses and more multi-day plateaus where I don’t lose anything.  But even expecting that change, I feel terrific in myself – clean and getting healthier.
New Goals:  Because I’ve FAR exceeded my initial objective, if I break fast tomorrow, I won’t be disappointed and beat myself up.  I would like to make it to Tuesday noon (which would be 25 days).  Beyond that, Friday noon would be four weeks and the following Monday (27 August 2018) would be one full month.  But that is 10 days away and seems like a far horizon…  Practically speaking, my “weight” goal is to shoot for six more pounds.  This would put me down 38lbs from my starting-the-fast weight (373lbs) and would be a 10% loss from there.  But that is “probably” 4 to 10 days away, and it too seems like a distant horizon…  (Do you see how easy it is for ego to start to slip into these situations?)  Day by day, day by day…  🙂
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On This Day In:
2017 Courage
2016 Don’t H8! — I’m With Her!!
2015 $20 Anyone?
2014 And Yet I Still Study
2013 Use Your Own
2012 Strengthen Freedom
2011 Attrition = A Lack Of Imagination
2010 Mind The Fire, Love
Just Beyond My Reach…
Even A Life Of Quiet Desperation!
Acts Of Courage

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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 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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