10 January 2018

48 HOURS OF MADNESS?



This time last week, the first Wednesday of 2018, I did something I have never done before, a fast (I can almost hear my mum saying 'oh my God, you never told me this information'... no mum, because you would have freaked out!). 

I'll start by saying that I really don't agree with fasting for long periods of time for 'diet' reasons. 'So why did you do it' I hear you ask! Well, at risk of coming across like I've lost all my marbles, I did it because I was following my intuition and what I had come to me during a meditation. It is hard to describe how somethings appear in your head isn't it, but sometimes you just have to go with it. I can guarantee that one of the farthest things from my mind at any given time is going without food (I love food... too much!) but I had a feeling I should take a step back, to re-calibrate and reset, for my mind more than my body. I had this come to me more than once and, as I am trying to lean into my intuition more this year, I decided to listen. I must admit though, doing something drastic, just because you 'feel' it's what you are 'meant' to do is a bit... well, strange to some. If you are the type of person who is always getting 'signs' and things just popping into your head, then you will get it, but otherwise you may feel like it is all a little 'woo-woo', and that is fair enough.

Alongside the fast, I was feeling like I was meant to step back from the usual routine in general, which meant no gym (probably wise given I'd be running on empty anyway), and take some time to journal, read, nap if I needed and mediate a little more. So, I trusted the pull (well, my word of the year is 'trust' after all), hoped that I would get some kind of epiphany (!) and went for it, telling only a couple of people close to me; purely in-case I started to go a little insane! 

My plan was to have 48 hours of purely water or the (ever so yummy) mixture I have in the mornings of lemon, apple cider vinegar and honey and then do 24 hours on green juices and snack on fruit and veg. Don't judge me, it's just what I thought felt right. I am happy to say that the first day and a half went well. Thanks to having a little honey in some of my drinks, I felt pretty 'switched on', all things considered. After 36 hours I started to feel a bit rubbish but I kept on going and made it to the end of the two day mark fairly easily. I then made myself a green juice and decided I had got enough out of the 48 hours and really couldn't stomach another day of kermit-coloured beverages!

All that in mind, I guess you may want to know if I got anything out of it spiritually, seeing as that was kind of the point; I would say that I did. My journey into learning to quiet my mind during meditation is a new one, and learning to listen more to any messages that come through when I am in a more quiet and still state of mind is something I am consciously working on this year but, it has to be said that, being more present within any specific moment is not something I am good at. My mind is always jabbering on at a million miles an hour and so, when I had this urge to do the fast, part of what I felt I was meant to get from it was a stillness. It was almost like I was forced to slow down my thinking, purely through the lack of food reducing my cognitive ability, especially by day two. Towards the end of the second day I sat in several meditations and did a slow yoga practice, and it was at this point in the process that I seemed to get several thoughts pop into my head, which I later journalled about; I can share just one of the things with you here (but the other things were personal to be so I won't be sharing those).

One of the biggest things that came up for me was my relationship surrounding food. I have always had many issues with food and, whilst I have never experienced an eating disorder, I would certainly admit to it being a huge contributing factor to some of the mental health struggles I have had. Christmas time always messes up my mind because, like the rest of us, I like to indulge in (all) the treats, eating way too much and my portion sizes go crazy too. Aside from Christmas I do give myself a really hard time about food and it is something I have been trying to find a healthy balance with for many years. The fast seemed to come along as a reset, like I have already mentioned, but also just as a way of reminding me that I don't need food as an emotional comfort blanket, I don't gain anything, mentally and spiritually speaking, by eating big portions or not listening to my body tell me it's not hungry and then stuffing my face anyway. Having started counting macros again since the fast, I can honestly say that I have had a serious word with myself about food and am journalling several thoughts surrounding helping my mindset stay balanced, so I would say that I gained some insight by following what I felt I needed to do in terms of this specific subject.

All in all I am happy that I listened to my intuition as what I got out of the experience was certainly worth it for me. I think that consciously taking the time to plan out two whole days of meditation, writing and yoga helped me get through the time and also made me a little more aware of the importance of self-care too. If you guys have any helpful advice, recommendations or insights about fasting for spiritual reasons then do get in touch with me or leave me a comment below, I am honestly really keep to learn more and to find out what journeys people have been on with fasting and what gets discovered along the way.
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4 comments

  1. Ooooh Lucy this is ever so interesting. As you know, I'm definitely one for going with my intuition - whilst I've never had a feeling that I need to fast I'm very tuned into what my body needs. After being very poorly for two years, in and out of hospital with a tumour in my neck which had to be removed and severe allergies - my body just decided to reject different foods until eventually all I could hold down was jacket potato and water. (My doctors were going insane with questions.) Very gradually I brought in an item of food each week, it took forever to be able to eat what I can eat now, however I learned so much.

    When I have a cold, I'll have huge cravings for things like carrots, red peppers, tomatoes, oranges, lemons etc. All things with high quantites of vitamin C and minerals. When I have been anaemic in the past, all I can think about is eating baked fish on a blanket of spinach with brown rice. It's crazy, but because I know my cravings are usually on point, I'll listen very closely to what I want to eat. As you know, I can't eat dairy or refined sugar, deep fried foods also cause havoc with my system, so my choices are pretty healthy. On Monday my dinner didn't touch the sides, I eat dinner on my break at work just before evening classes, and my initial response was "well, you'll be fine you've eaten enough." Luckily I caught myself, I really didn't feel like I had, so I popped to the shop, bought a bag of almonds, ate some with a cup of tea and about 20-30 minutes later I was feeling so much better.

    It takes a very long time to tune into oneself, for me it took years of illness (I've had problems with food my whole life) but I wouldn't change that for the world now. Because I trust in what my body is telling me. I'm so sorry for the very long comment!!
    Sending lots of love your way, keep listening to your intuition and gut feelings, I'm sure they'll steer your in the right direction. Well done for telling a few people too beforehand, it's always good to have someone there to make sure you don't overstep the mark with things like this!

    (That being said, my doctors went absolutely mad at me when I told them I'd be embarking on a plant based diet experiment - this reduced the other tumours in my body by 90%... if I'd have listened to them I'd be in a totally different situation now!)

    Peta xx

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    1. Thank you so much for that wonderful comment lovely; it shows the power of our bodies and what they tell us. Not enough people listen to their intuition and I really am starting to realise that it is pretty on point for me. I know that I have always used food as an emotional leaning post and I also know how bad that makes me feel, triggering more emotions and more food (of course!). The older I get the more I realise the viscous circle of destruction and so I am now in a place where I am strong enough to let myself 'feel' what I need and work it out from a different place (rather than food!) - I have a blog post this time next week about that too! As always honey, your comments and thoughts mean the world. You are such a huge inspiration always. Sending heaps of love your way (give the fur babies a kiss from me too!) xxx

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  2. Hello. This makes for a very interesting read, Peta's comment too. I've always tried to follow my gut and it's never let me down. I've never tried a fast, I don't think I could, if I go without food for more than a few hours I go a little nutty. But if it works for you, go for it. This year I'm trying to make the time for myself, be it exercise, quiet time, or whatever, it's so important to stop, listen, and evalute once in a while.

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    1. Hey! Thank you for your comment. I totally know what you mean about fasting; it is not my thing at all but when I 'got the call' to try it I figured I would trust my (hungry) gut!xx

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