I am currently more than half way through a 24 hour fast to raise money for the DEC Philippines Campaign and I’m doing pretty good! Feeling pretty hungry but nothing that seems impossible to deal with.
Googling survival tips for fasting proved to be rather terrifying yesterday. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but a whole underbelly of Tumblr devoted to ‘thinspiration’ blogs and teenage girls bragging about how long they can go without food was not it. One of the first posts I saw was a young woman bragging about how she had gone almost 2 days without food and had already lost 5lbs. I’m not sure why I didn’t expect this – I’ve certainly seen and been horrified by websites and blogs glorifying anorexia and other similar illnesses before – but I just got it into my head that the only reason someone would decide to fast would be for something along the lines of raising money like I am, or for religious reasons. Probably incredibly naive of me! I was also surprised by how many blogs/website aimed at men were promoting the idea of fasting as a way to loose weight or get fit.
I’ve already survived the Amnesty Mayfair & Soho Christmas Party – and that really made me think about how much I graze and snack without even thinking about what I’m doing. I expected it to be pretty easy, especially as much of the food brought consisted of things I don’t really like (our French contigent brought in lots of cheese for instance) but just little things like wanting to eat a few crisps while sitting around chatting really made me think about how often I don’t think about what I’m putting into my body.
So far this fast has made me think about myself and my eating habits more than I ever expected – as well as appreciating my mum for dieting without imposing her all of her issues with loosing weight onto me. I like to think I’m pretty strong-minded and I would never have gone down an even scarier path where food is concerned, but looking at some things posted in the depths of the Internet has really made me think.
This is without even thinking about the fact that I’m raising money to help people so many miles away. To put this into a bit of perspective, I received an email from an engineer working out in Tacloban with Save the Children that included just a single photo to show the sheer devastation people are facing out there. I’ve printed out said picture to help keep things in perspective when I’m might be struggling to finish the fast.