Fasting Can make You Better At Life, Here's How...
As I sit down to start this post, I’m 61 hours into a 72 hour fast.
That’s right…I haven’t had any food for the last 2.5 days.
Only black coffee and water, sometimes with salt.
But as the hours pass by, I’m starting to realize that an amazing sense of clarity has
started to set in.
I don’t feel hungry, or tired, or on edge. My mind is clear, my body feels great and I
have mostly stopped obsessing over food.
I’ve completed 2 workouts and will finish another one in a couple of hours, this time
with my wife P and a group of our friends.
I’ve played outside with my kids and life has gone on like everything is normal.
Don’t be fooled though, I can’t wait to eat again. I’ve already picked out the steak
that I’m going to have for dinner tonight and I’m looking forward to getting back on
my regular schedule.
I love food, but I also love being healthy, active and strong.
I’ve dedicated myself to staying in shape and pursuing an optimum balance of
fitness, lifestyle and fun. Overall healthy and lean, but not afraid to have a cheat
meal every now and then.
disciplined but not rigid,
hardcore but not hardheaded,
aggressive but mindful,
2 years ago, if you’d have told me that I was going to become an active practitioner
of fasting, I’d have looked at you like you were crazy.
My response would have probably sounded something like: “You want me to go 2-3
days without food? How? I can barely go 15 minutes!”
I was fairly set in my ways, probably a little over-indulgent and a little short-sighted.
But that all changed as I started to become aware of fasting and the people who
were practicing it regularly. People who are way stronger, more successful, and
more advanced than I am.
And as I looked at their lives, the paths that they’re on and the information that
they’re putting out, I felt myself drawn to be more like them. To constantly strive to
maximize my own health and fitness because I know that it will carry over into every
part of my life.
So I started to fast regularly, and as you can probably imagine, it didn’t go well at
My first fast was scheduled to be 48 hours and I had it all planned out.
I was going to start after breakfast on a Thursday and then finish Saturday morning
with a giant steak. It was going to be easy, or so I thought.
What I didn’t account for was the pure obsession that I had with eating. It’s crazy…
when you eliminate something from your life cold turkey, the urges don’t stop.
They actually get stronger at first until it’s the only thing you can think about.
Seriously, my mind could not get off of food. I was driving myself crazy thinking
about my next meal and when I’d finally be able to eat again.
I wasn’t hungry, I was obsessed.
That obsession finally overtook me at the 36-hour mark. I gave in and had dinner on
Friday night, 12 hours short of my goal.
As I took that first bite of steak, I wasn’t disappointed at all. I had completely given
in to the short-term gratification and had no regrets about it.
But the next day it was different, I felt like I had given up on myself and my goal. I’d
also probably prevented myself from realizing the maximum health benefits that can
come from doing a multi-day fast.
I also missed out on a few non-scientific benefits. Positive side effects of fasting
that I have since benefitted from and would love to share with you.
Non-quantifiable results that will definitely change your life for the better.
While I initially started fasting for the above health benefits, I’ve continued to do it
because of the positive side effects. Every time I complete another fast, I feel like
I’ve gained an advantage over the competition, made myself stronger and gotten
one step closer to realizing my potential.
If you’ve made it this far, my guess is that you’re interested in the same things too.
So, let’s take it a little bit further…here are the 3 main benefits that I’ve seen from
Benefit 1: The mental strength that comes when you keep a promise that you’ve made to yourself.
There’s something powerful about overcoming self-imposed obstacles, challenges
that you put in your own way for the sole purpose of testing your own strength.
I’ve always gravitated towards doing hard things. In the past these have always
come from external sources. Things like hard workouts, challenging projects at
work, big goals etc.
But fasting is different.
It’s an internal challenge of willpower and mental strength, and when I first started
on my journey I wasn’t sure that I’d be strong enough to finish.
I wasn’t at first, but after that failed attempt I’ve since completed two 48-hour fasts
and one 72-hour fast. I’ve proven to myself that internal weaknesses can be
overcome and that we all have the potential to keep improving.
Plus, the confidence that I’ve gained from completing these self-imposed
challenges has spilled over into every aspect of my life.
I’m more confident to take on bigger projects, and that confidence is backed up by
the mental toughness that I’ve continued to build over time. I now have the ability
to set a goal and know 100% that I will commit myself to achieving it.
This alone has been worth every hour of suffering that I’ve endured on my fasts.
Benefit 2: Fasting helps you build your willpower.
Some people believe that willpower is a trait that you’re either born with, or you’re
From my experience, it’s more like a muscle. The more you exercise it, the stronger
it gets and the only way for it to keep progressing is for you to continually challenge
For me, fasting has been an incredible tool to do just that.
During the periods that I’m not eating I always encourage my family to go on with
life as normal. That means that we all sit down at the dinner table together, the kids
still get their snacks and they don’t have to feel bad about eating in front of me.
I even go out of my way to help bring their plate to the table or scoop their ice
cream for dessert.
There’s no doubt that going about it this way has added an extra element of
difficulty. I’m within an arm’s reach of food at all times and I have to continually
force myself to stay strong.
But I feel like this is a great way to prepare yourself for real life. There are always
external distractions vying for your attention and you have to be strong enough to
block them out or you’ll never reach your goals.
And seriously, who would ever want to isolate themselves from everything anyway?
Cultivating your ability to ignore distractions and stay on track is a much better
Think about it, if you can build the mental strength to turn down ice cream when
you haven’t eaten in 57 hours, the possibilities are endless!
Benefit 3: Fasting helps improve your relationship with food.
For a long time, eating was my default activity for everything.
Hungry or not, if there was food around I was going to eat it. I do my best to eat
healthy most of the time, but always focusing on food can have other underlying
Think about how much time is wasted if you always have to stop and eat, or if you
can’t sit down and complete a task without a snack break.
This became very obvious as soon as I started fasting. It was the reason that I
failed on my first attempt, and it’s a battle that I’m forced to fight whenever I decide
to do another one.
Honestly, it’s a little bit scary.
When you stop eating the thought of food takes over your brain. It’s almost
inescapable for the first day or two, especially if you are bored or have time to sit
I’m sure that some of this is basic survival instinct, but a lot of it is rooted in pure
habit. If you live a life where food is accessible 100% of the time, it becomes an
easily abused privilege.
Taking it away puts things in perspective.
You learn to put hunger in its place. You discover that it’s not impossible to go
several hours in between meals and that it’s not necessary to finish that bag of
chips just because it’s sitting there in front of you.
Think about the domino effect that this can have on your health and fitness levels in
You’ll be able to meet your goals faster and easier simply by cultivating your
relationship with food, and your ability to limit the unnecessary snacking.
Just like willpower, each time you say no you get a little stronger. Do this over and
over, and the results will be amazing.
Ok…have I sold you on the benefits yet? Are you excited to dive in and plan your
first or next fast?
Fasting has a number of proven scientific benefits but the other positive side effects
that come from it can give you an unbelievable advantage in your everyday life.
It enables you to build mental strength and internal momentum to overcome
It is an amazing tool for exercising your willpower and it will improve your
relationship with food.
Plus, studies have shown that you can maintain muscle mass while fasting!
So, what do you think? Are you in?
I’d love to hear from you if you plan on doing a fast, or if you have completed one in
the past and seen some of the benefits that I mentioned above.
Looking forward to talking soon!
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(***Disclaimer: We aren't doctors and we don't pretend to be. If you plan on doing a fast please consult your physician first!***)