It’s 7:30 on night 20 of my Intermittent Fasting and Night Eating Agreement, and my belly is full! Yes, I stopped eating before 7 pm, 6:45 to be exact (side note, I have not had a slip up since my night 15 post and that experience has encouraged me to embrace and delight in this practice all the more) but, I ate way too much tonight and thought about having (but didn’t) a dessert before my 7 pm cut off just because it would be my last chance.
I have to say there is a great sense of relief that comes with knowing or choosing that after 7 pm, there will be no more food until morning. Otherwise (being me and knowing myself) I, at some point would choose to have a dessert whether my belly felt like there was room for it or not. Then would come the guilt, the discomfort, the feelings of disempowerment.
With the schedule I have agreed to, and am keeping myself accountable to by way of sharing every step with you (whoever you are), I feel free!!!! Heart smiling, inner glow, deep gratitude and contentment knowing I am doing the best for my body, mind and emotions. The anxiety that I experienced in the beginning days of this agreement, (psychological attachment to having some type of treat at night) are not there anymore. Rather than a sense of deprivation, I am now feeling a sense of liberation from a habit that has had me shackled for years. If I choose to watch a movie or am up late doing whatever, I do begin to feel hungry, and I might think about what I would have chosen to indulge in a few weeks ago, but then I let it go and feel the power in being okay with allowing my digestive system a true rest.
Admittedly, I do not enjoy the discomfort of experiencing hunger pangs, or allowing that sensation to stretch out until a predetermined time. But, as a person in this western culture of abundance where there is food (great food), available always, (may the day come soon when this is so for all beings on our planet) the discomfort is mainly an emotional one. I am well aware that my body is completely nourished and there will be more coming very soon. I am also well aware that settling into any new habit means pushing through the discomfort of letting go of the old while being steadfast in the new practice until it becomes the new habit. My body, and mind are adjusting.
The most difficult time of day is now around 8:30 am, when I am feeling the desire to eat, but my agreement is 9 am – just 30 minutes away. However if I make myself a tea (usually containing caffeine, green or Mate`) I often find that 9 or even 9:30 rolls around before I know it.
One last word about night eating; I have begun to brush my teeth right after dinner or that 7 pm hour, and it seems to create a seal on eating. I don’t want to eat again after my mouth feels nice and clean. I happen to think this is a great technique to keep yourself from eating in the night whether you are choosing to practice Intermittent Fasting or just want to stop eating a couple hours before bed.
Do you have any routines that keep you from indulging in the late night hours? I’d love to hear from you.
Until next time,