• nicolejessicacoggan

What Happened When I Fasted for 36 Hours

The longest fast I had ever done was the required 16 hours prior to surgery. That was tough but I survived that so I figured I could give a 36 hour fast a whirl. After all, if I timed it properly, I’d be asleep for most of it.

Why fast for 36 hours?

I’d read about the health benefits of fasting and it seemed like a win-win. Simply fast for 36 hours, once a week and reap the rewards. Apparently if I fast once per week for 36 hours I can expect:

· Increased weight loss

· A boost in longevity

· Reduced diabetes risk

· Lowered heart disease risk

This is sometimes known as the Monk fast and you can read more about it here.

Starting my 36 Hour Fast

I decided to start my fast on a Sunday night. I figured I’m busy with work and Netball on a Monday and my motivation levels for the week are at an all time high, so doing the bulk of the challenge on a Monday seemed like a good idea in theory. After all, I would have plenty of distractions.

I had my last thing to eat at 7:30pm on Sunday night. It wasn’t much of a meal, just my usual frozen yogurt ice block as a treat after dinner. I had no issues sleeping through the night. At this stage my body absolutely thought by 7:30 am, I was going to have a lovely breakfast. Little did it know.

My body remained fooled that breakfast was coming up until about 10am when I guess it started to think I’d forgotten to feed it and sent me a sharp pang of hunger to remind me. Honestly, this lasted all of five minutes and was easily distracted by a pressing university exam that needed my full attention.

I sailed through until about 12:30pm when I had another hunger pang. This one was more persistent, so I distracted myself with a quick walk around the block. From there things became a little trickier. I had plenty of writing work on, but my brain started to feel super cloudy, and I had a tiny bit of difficulty in concentrating. The hunger pains also settled in until around 3:30 when they gave up and started to abate. For about a two-hour period, I also felt quite shaky and jittery.

To be honest, I spend most of this time googling ‘how to avoid hunger on a 36 hour fast’ and ‘why do I feel shaky on a ‘36 hour fast’. I start to think that maybe I should have fasted on a Sunday instead so I could sleep through the worst of it. I’m so hungry damn it!

The Middle Stage of My 36 Hour Fast

Things seemed to settle into a more natural rhythm after about three hours and my brain started to function again and the jitters stopped. The rest of the afternoon at work was pretty standard. I was super glad for the Netball distraction when I finished though!

I don’t think fasting affected my game and I felt pretty good by the time the game was over. I decided on an early night to avoid any food temptations but by 10pm felt absolutely wired and full of energy so I had a harder time than usual in shutting down.

How did I sleep on the fast? Not so well. I had way too much energy which would have been great if I hadn’t been trying to sleep. I wasn’t hungry anymore, but I found I was ready to start my day at 3am which was less than ideal!

The End of My 36 Hour Fast

The good news was that my hunger was absolutely gone so by the time 7:30am came around, so I didn’t even need to break my fast (but I did). I are my usual breakfast of berries, vegetable juice and some oats.

How much weight did I lose on the 36 hour fast.

I lost 1.2kg. I don’t know if that number will stay in place because it’s probably just because of my empty stomach but it’s a step in the right direction.

Would I do the 36 hour fast again?

Absolutely. But next week, I’m going to do the bulk of it on a Sunday so I can sleep away that ditzy, hungry three hours of hell stage😊

PS: I'm not a doctor dudes so consult with yours or do your own research before trying this at home.

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