For Lent this year, I decided to kick it old school with fasting.
I’ve been half-heartedly playing around with intermittent fasting for the last few months, but I wanted to give it a more serious trial.
I also wanted to try a new form of fasting: the digital fast. I “fasted” a bit this past February with my blogging sabbatical, but I wanted to take this to another level, too.
Since I think Lent is a great opportunity to develop new habits, my penitence practically picked itself.
I wouldn’t do very well in a food shortage situation. I think about food - a lot. In fact, whenever I’m outside of my regular routine, I’m always wondering when I’ll get to eat next.
Given that there are more and more natural disasters occurring in places that they haven’t occurred before, I’ve realized I need to get a better handle on this.
I have to realize that if a situation called for it, I could go without food for a while. I don’t want to be the person in that type of situation who can only focus on getting a meal.
But more importantly (and most applicable to my everyday life) are the many health benefits associated with fasting that I found in my research.
So each Monday during Lent, I’ll be going without food for a 24-hour period. I’m allowing myself only water and tea (no milk or sugar) on fast days. I’m experimenting with a dinner-to-dinner fast and a brunch-to-brunch fast to see which works best for me.
Aside: I know that in the Catholic faith, food fasting during Lent happens on Fridays. But as I’ve stated before, I’m not a very good Catholic.
My research also led me to the discovery of the two-meals-a-day system. I find this very fascinating. Honestly, I think many of us eat too much. It’s pretty easy to see just looking around.
There’s no reason why someone of my small frame, who is fully grown, doesn’t exercise excessively, and does more mental than physical work, needs to eat as much as I have in the past.
It makes sense to me that we should allow our bodies a proper rest in between meals and not to overdo it at those meals.
So in addition to my weekly 24-hour fasts, I’ll also continue experimenting with eating two meals a day. (I’ve been slowly transitioning to this since January.) I’ve had success with eating only brunch and dinner, with a latte-style drink in between . . . perhaps a two-and-a-half-meals-a-day system, then.
I’d like to make it clear that this is what I’m doing. I’ve found in my research that one expert will say one thing, another expert will say the complete opposite. Someone will do their research and choose a plant-based diet, someone else chooses Paleo. Someone chooses two meals a day, someone else chooses six meals a day.
There appears to be evidence to support everything these days. And since most of us have our own bias, we tend to seek out information that supports what we already believe (or what we hope) to be true.
So I’m going with my gut. (Literally.) And then, I’m testing it to see if it’s actually right for me.
It took me a while to get a smartphone. I didn’t really get the fuss. Then, I got my first iPhone in 2010. Now we’re rarely separated.
When I wake up in the morning, one of the first things I do is check my smartphone (which is really quite sad).
I’m not about to give it up - maybe next Lent – but I do think some limitations are needed. You see, it’s not really the smartphone that’s the problem, it’s what I do with it.
So each Thursday during Lent I’ll avoid checking social media, reading blogs, and Googling. I have a
slight big Google problem. My thoughts often result in a Google search. I’ll just have to wait until Fridays to Google whatever was on my mind. If it’s important enough, I’ll remember.
I have a feeling that digital fasting may be harder than food fasting.
Lent only lasts a little over six weeks, but hopefully what I learn during that period can be carried forward for a lifetime.
“To rise at six, dine at ten, sup at six, and go to bed at ten, makes a [wo]man live ten times ten.” – 16th Century Proverb
P.S. I’m not food fasting to lose weight. I think I’m just fine the way I am. :)
P.P.S. I reserve the right to switch around my fasting days. Sometimes, life happens.
Disclaimer: Food fasting isn’t recommended for those that are pregnant, breastfeeding, still growing, have a tendency towards eating disorders, or suffering from a medical condition. Digital fasting, however, is safe for everyone . . . though, it may harm your social life. Proceed with caution.
In other news: I’ve been cleaning out my closet and have some new wardrobe additions (see here and here). I also bought a convertible dress for my upcoming travels, but I’m not completely sold on it, yet.
NEXT POST: April 7th.