Fasting And Why It Is Vital For Self-Discipline

I will be the first to admit that I am not the most religious person. Last year was the first time in my life that I have fasted for the entire duration of Ramadhan, the holy month for Muslims all over the world. Food and Water were always my Kryptonite. Plus I have a few bad habits. Basically I lacked discipline through out my life.

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In  approximately 24 hours, the first day of Ramadhan will begin which will mark 30 days of Intermittent Fasting (IF).

IF has been gaining a lot of momentum recently in the fitness industry and the main reason is because it simply works. The thing about losing fat (along with many other things in life) is that there are many paths to reach the same destination. IF happens to be one of the fastest BUT it is not for everyone, especially for people who have yet to learn to separate emotional hunger from real hunger.

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If you eat like shit, chances are you look like shit too.

For me, there are two reasons why I fast.

1) Faith

2) Conviction

Fasting will be a rude awakening for people on how they view food and water. It serves to remind  them that there are so many people out there in the world who would literally kill to be in their fortunate predicament. For the rest of the year, people take basic necessities such as food and water for granted, because you never know what you’ve got until it’s gone.

However, for the lay muslim, fasting is just one of those things they are obliged to do just because they were born muslim. They simply fast without asking why. Hence, compliance will be an issue for most people because they do not have enough conviction to stick to the full duration of the month of IF.

Let me give you 3 tips on how YOU can use this month to reach your fitness goals which is only to lose fat because gaining muscle is nearly impossible, unless you already have muscle memory.

1) Eat real food.

There are bound to be traditional malay snacks that are laden in sugar and other unhealthy concoctions. It is okay to eat those foods, heck even I have a sweet tooth. Just remember not to go overboard. Eat a proper meal (compromising of meat,eggs,vegetables,fruits,nuts and noodles/rice if you aren’t fat) and drink at least 2 liters of plain water, spaced out of course.

2) Move.

Yes, it’s that simple. Life still goes on even while you are fasting! Do whatever you would do normally, although you might have to accommodate the limitations of fasting. For example, I usually exercise about mid-afternoon but now I will only exercise after breaking my fast.

3) Sleep earlier.

Yes, sleep plays a huge part in reducing fat because sleep is highly anabolic. Let me put it this way, if you don’t sleep enough, you won’t lose fat fast enough. Go to sleep earlier to facilitate waking up earlier, to prepare your meals and agenda for the day.

At the end of the month, if you follow these three simple steps diligently, you will definitely lose fat, not water which is usually the side effect of IF. People think that they automatically lose fat when fasting but that is not the case. Sorry to disappoint, it is just temporary. Diligence begets success.

P.S. My personal goal,

P.P.S. Oops, sorry wrong picture.

Ahhhh, more like it.

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