It’s on like Donkey Kong [fname]!
What: Quivering Quads Trail Half Marathon
When: Sunday, March 4, 2018
Where: Cuivre River State Park in Troy, MO
Why: Because you’re a little bit loco… Because you’re looking to put a big feather in your 2018 cap… Because it’s out of your comfort zone… Because CJ said so… Because you need a new long sleeve hoodie…
Sign-Up Link: http://www.fleetfeetstlouis.com/QQ
The 5-Day Fast Follow-Up…
At the risk of boring you to tears by writing, YET AGAIN, on the topic of fasting… I wanted to detail my experience over the past week where I completed a 5-Day Fast while it’s still fresh in my mind.
1) WHY Fast??
“Why are you doing this CJ?… For fun?… For Lent?… For glory?… For fat loss?… Isn’t this unhealthy?… Don’t you need food?… Besides, you don’t have ANY fat to lose!”
First of all, I’m flattered that some of you think I don’t have any fat. Shout out to Under Armour for making me look like more of an action hero than I actually am.
[I must protect this house!]
Truth is, for men, the ESSENTIAL minimal amount of body fat you must have to remain healthy is approximately 3%. (For women it’s more like 12%.) (Think competitive bodybuilders with paper thin skin where you can see every muscle fiber.)
Frankly, I don’t know my true body fat percentage since I don’t have ready access to expensive DEXA scans or float tanks. The handheld device at Bootcamp usually places me at about 12%, so if that’s somewhere in the ballpark, I’ve got plenty of room to play with.
If you go by Arnold Schwarzennegger’s measurement: “It’s simple… if you can pinch it, it’s fat.” Even by that standard, there’s still some notable “love” in my handles.
Secondly, while I think fasting is an EXTREMELY powerful tool for burning excess fat, that’s not the reason that I undertook this endeavor.
It seems when I talk about lesser known health strategies like cold thermogenesis or fasting… people’s minds SHUT OFF after they hear the words “weight loss” or “fat loss”. (And then their mind shuts down a second time when they realize fasting means NOT eating food… And then a third time as their mind substitutes an image of Speedy Gonzales for ‘fasting’… And then again as they fascinate about tacos…)
What were we talking about? Oh, right..
Yes, fat loss is in on the list.
But I can assure you there are a myriad of other research-verified health benefits to fasting… both intermittent fasts and extended fasts like the 5-Day endeavor I just undertook.
Here are just SOME of the benefits in case you missed them in my previous posts and social media updates:
1) Yes! Fat loss. (But there’s so much MORE!!)
2) Reduce inflammation.
3) Reverse autoimmunity.
4) Reverse Type 2 diabetes.
5) Reverse cancer proliferation. (And quicker recovery if you’ve undergone chemo-therapy treatments.)
6) Improve brain health. (memory, cognition, focus, etc)
7) Reverse brain disease (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s…)
8) Anti-Aging effects & Longevity
9) Improve mitochondrial health
10) Autophagy (replace old, damaged cells with new awesome ones)
10) + NEW DISCOVERY: Reverse cellular damage from EMF exposure
Coincidentally, I just came across a podcast discussing the damage being done by EMF (aka Electro Magnetic Fields—think WiFi, microwaves, cell phones, Bluetooth, etc). These electromagnetic frequencies are doing damage on a cellular level… damaging mitochondria (the powerhouse of your cells), and disrupting cellular communication.
Here’s the podcast if you’re so inlined:
Are EMF’s a problem?
Yes!… and we’re bathed in these frequencies constantly. It’s affecting cows, chickens, insects, and even the tiny critters that make up the microbiome inside your gut. (Remember, gut health is largely responsible for your overall health.)
What makes cellular COMMUNICATION important?
Imagine a football game, where the crowd is so loud, that nobody can hear the quarterback. When the players can’t communicate, it becomes exponentially difficult to operate effectively.
For OPTIMAL performance, communication is critical to:
Tom Brady (and the Super Bowl runner-up Patriots)…
to a husband and wife…
to a hive of bees…
AND to the microscopic cells and bacteria that make up your body.
No communication… No Bueno!
Critical functions break down. We wind up with symptoms and diseases and don’t know why.
Can you minimize EMF exposure?
Can you eliminate it in today’s Westernized world?
How much higher is our EMF exposure today vs 100 years ago?
Answer: A BILLION BILLION fold! (That’s a 10 with 18 ZEROES behind it!)
Can you undo or mitigate the damage caused by EMF’s?
Yes. And the quickest and easiest way to do that is with a 5-Day Fast to reset the system.
In summary, it ain’t just about fat loss. 🙂
2) How much weight can I expect to lose if I fast?
O-M-G!… I’m so glad I got my point across about the NUMEROUS benefits of fasting.
I figured you’d want numbers though. So…
Day 1 Weight & Body Fat: 181.2lbs / 11.4%
Day 5 Weight & Body Fat: 173lbs / 9.0%
So I dropped about 8 pounds (2 pounds per day) and a couple percentage points on body fat.
And yes, my abs looked a little more ripped than usual if I do say so myself. 😉
3) How hard was it?
It depends on who you ask.
My other 5-Day Fasters expressed reaching a point of ease, clarity, peace, and effortlessness. Moments where “Everything is beautiful.”
For me… I won’t lie, this was hard!
I cruised through the first two days pretty easily.
On Day 3, physical activities became more challenging but I forced myself to complete my usual early morning, pre-Bootcamp death match with dumbbells.
On Days 4 & 5, I had to forego my usual training session as pulling out the equipment to set up for class became a Herculean effort. I was a little wonky, off, light-headed, weird, and feeling depleted of energy.
I forced through my normal post-class work assignments during the week with the exception of Day 5 where I wound up napping and counting down the hours to the reintroduction of food.
For all the fasters I talked to, the general consensus was: The desire to eat, chew, swallow, and taste food remained… BUT there was a profoundly new understanding of actual HUNGER.
WANTING and/or CRAVING is not equal to actual HUNGER.
Even on Day 5 when I was feeling depleted… I wasn’t ready to binge like I expected. I wanted something nourishing and light.
At no point did I experience “STARVATION” or even nagging HUNGER.
As with so many things, different people have different experiences. But it’s one I definitely got a lot of benefit from. The mental and psychological epiphanies were (and will continue to be) invaluable. This experiment has positively and profoundly changed the way I view my relationship with food.
4) What did you eat for your first meal?
I finally settled on making myself some stir fried veggies in ghee with some olives and an avocado.
It. Was. MAGNIFICENT!
It may be no surprise that food tastes really good after a 5-day hiatus.
But it was surprising that I didn’t want to eat everything in the house to make up for lost time.
Your stomach, your palate, and your body become re-sensitized in an indescribable way. Almost instinctively, you take slower bites, you chew more, you savor each forkful.
Pre-fast, I’ve become accustomed to wolfing down my food (which probably comes from a lifetime of competing with brothers, friends, and roommates for portions… a desire to save time… the mindlessness of eating while watching TV and to kill off boredom… and a lack of appreciation for food’s roll in nourishment vs mere satisfaction aka ‘filling the hole’.)
In a world where food is always available, you come to take it for granted.
It was only a mini-vacation from food that has helped to increase my awareness and gratitude for it.
5) What would you do differently next time?
Workouts: I probably wouldn’t push myself as hard as I did early in the week. There were Bootcampers who made it through the full week of workouts without any problems. But the amount that I usually demand from my body in the pre-dawn hours tends to be extreme in terms of a muscle-building effort. So in the future, I would probably tone down my workout intensity during an extended fast.
Electrolytes & Probiotics: Most people think of Gatorade when they think of electrolytes and yogurt or pills when they think of probiotics. But my every day morning drink solves this equation in a far healthier way using lemon water with apple cider vinegar and Himalayan sea salt. A GOOD salt (not typical table salt) contains a large array of the minerals/electrolytes your body needs. I might also use my Ease magnesium spray (which you can find on Amazon) or incorporate Epson salt baths to keep up with magnesium intake. Apple cider vinegar takes care of the probiotic component. This is how I start every day, not just during fasting protocol.
Sleep: I started out the week in a bad place sleep-wise. Following my friend’s Super Bowl party I got home late and only got 4 hours of sleep. Sleep is ALWAYS important. But I’d try to do a better job of providing my body with the recovery it needs during a time when I’m adding a hormedic stress (good stress) like fasting.
6) Will I do it again?
Did you not see the list of benefits that I outlined above???
This is a health protocol that I think we should all be experimenting with. (There are exceptions detailed in some of my previous posts.)
Do we need food?
Yes. But our society has become hooked on it like a drug. We have an unhealthy relationship with food and schedule our lives around it.
As a bonus… two of the biggest objections I hear about eating healthy is that
1) It’s expensive. (MONEY.)
2) It takes a lot of time to shop/meal prep/eat well. (TIME.)
Fasting costs ZERO dollars and ZERO of your precious minutes.
What if you regularly partook in intermittent fasting? By skipping breakfast every day you could essentially save ONE THIRD of your food budget. A couple of 24 hour fasts would add additional savings. Toss in a few 5-day fasts each year and all of a sudden you’ve got enough cash to buy yourself some new Gucci shoes and a trip to Disney World.
[“I’m going to Disney World!”]
When you break the hypnotic grip that food holds over most of us you free up so many parts of yourself and open up the possibilities for your life. You no longer feed the dragon of BIG FOOD companies that depend on your addiction and misunderstanding for profits. You no longer succumb to the plethora of diseases that are decimating our nation. You no longer need the pills pushed by Big Pharma. You break the chains of bondage and you become a freer, more empowered, enlightened, aware version of yourself.
And when you’re the best version of yourself, you’re doing your part to set off chain reactions that will make the world the best version of itself.
I know… I know… I’m not Ghandi and I’m not a guru.
But I see potential in all of us. I’m just trying to provide some sparks… So you can bring the FIRE! 😉
BIG CONGRATS to ALL of my fasters who were willing to take the fasting challenge. Whether you skipped your first meal or went the full week, you’re proving to yourself and to the world that you’re a conqueror of challenges. And we need more people like you.
Mark your calendars for 5/19/2018!!
That’s right!… We’re going back to the Battlegrounds!
Our crew had such a blast in the last one, that there was no hesitation in signing up for the next one.
You gotta get in on this!
AND… If you register early, you get a discount! (Discount code: LETSBATTLE)
Don’t miss out!
Here’s what to do (step-by-step instructions):
Go here: http://thebattlegrounds.com/events/
Click Sign Up Now!
Click Sign Up Online Now
Click Register Now
Choose Afternoon Waves 12-3pm
Fill out the form… (CHOOSE Distance: 5k) (CHOOSE Team: Battle-Tested Bootcampers)
Before you finish checking out, use DISCOUNT CODE: LETSBATTLE to get $10 OFF!
Hoping to get a big team together for this one, dominate the course, create some new stories, and party like a rockstar at the finish line!
Discount code may only be good through the end of October… so don’t wait… sign up now and schedule your life around this event. 😉
CJ’s Book of the Week:
“High Performance Habits” by Brendan Burchard
“Skedge” for 2/12/18-2/17/18
Manchester (Class Times: Mon-Fri @ 5:30/7:00/8:30am & Satuday @ 7am)
Monday: Core (CJ)
Tuesday: Lower (CJ)
Wednesday: Upper (CJ)
Thursday: Core (CJ)
Friday: Lower (CJ)
Saturday: Upper (CJ)
Owner, Operator, & “CeejEO”
St. Louis Fitness Bootcamp