Funnily, I start losing my motivation after raya. The crazy sleeping pattern which was done to adjust to iftar and sahur from Ramadhan has distorted my workout schedule and even prior sleeping pattern. I tried to make way to working out so that meant eating pre and post workout. All three factors (working out late, eating large before workout and after workout) affected how I’m able to sleep at night—which was none at all. Now that we’re off Ramadhan, I have to find my normal workout rhythm.
I was on this journey of self-discovery when I experimented with numerous ways to live my life in the aspect of food (what I eat), actions (what I do in reference to daily activities), and my mindset (my behaviour, my beliefs). I was searching for a holistic method that encompasses all aspects of the human well-being. Throughout this journey, I have discovered many things about my body, my mind, and my overall self.
Previously, I was very fixated to only adhering to one type of lifestyle: the Keto lifestyle. The Keto lifestyle is comprised of eating foods which are high in protein, high in fats, but low in carbs. I believed this would be a sustainable way of living. Then, I found that it is not the only way to live. It is a way to live, but it is not the only way to live. This is due to the fact that I will encounter numerous circumstances which would validate why I require carbs. One of the more salient reasons: when doing resistance training.
I believed that if I just ate meat, chicken, fish, prawns and eggs, it would be sufficient. I thought that they could provide me with sufficient nutrients (and energy) required to build muscle. Little did I know, my appetite, like so many other non-constant things in my life, changes from day-to-day. What I find pleasing today, I may not find pleasing tomorrow. Aside from that, by strictly abiding to the Keto diet while doing intermittent fasting, it would be counter-productive since I will be in a caloric-deficit. If I am in a caloric-deficit, I would not have sufficient energy to workout. If I don’t have sufficient energy to workout, I cannot push myself hard when working out. The purpose of having progressive overload during workout sessions is to have incremental but sure change in either the weight one uses when training, the amount of repetitions, or even the amount of sets one does in a session.
For days when I need to recover from soreness from having worked out intensely, I would not need to eat too heavily as I would not need that much energy anyway as recovery requires one to rest and not workout. Aside from that, this is one way to ensure my calories stay in the ‘sufficient’ amount. I do not need to go overboard, nor do I need to deprive myself of necessary nutrients by ‘underdoing’ my eating.
Mindful-eating and nutrition should not only cover my workouts. I understand how my eating is also affected by outings with friends and family. I like to attribute my next pattern of eating to ‘social obligations’, as I have always done for quite some time now. I do believe that—when I’m in the company of others, I would feel obliged to eat a little more; indulge in the sweet and the creamy, down the fried and the greasy. Therefore, for days when I am out with my friends, having fun in the company of my family or generally enjoying myself, I should also be allowed to eat whatever I feel like eating, granted I practice temperance, and remember to not overdo my actions when eating. Consequently, I can always fast the day after a very intense eating episode (I use the word ‘episode’ since well, I tend to go apeshit when it comes to binge-eating. Not healthy, I know. But I feel like I’m slowly trying to eliminate this very bad habit).
I don’t want to ever claim that I have figured everything out about myself, but I am slowly trying to unravel secrets about myself, piece-by-piece, layer-by-layer, in the hope that this gradual but sure process leads me to a better understanding of who I am, what I am, and how I am.
P/S: Humans learn first and foremost by: imitating. When you compound reason into the mix, a human being will find the action imperative. When it comes to learning anything, if one finds it difficult, imitate. That will be your stepping stone in making something that is sustainable.
P/P/S: Human beings are programmed creatures. Forever conditioned, and moulded by their surroundings aside from the things they already consciously accept and acknowledge. As with anything that is programmable, it is possible to reprogram.