First Rule: Do Not Talk About Intermittent Fasting
People are cruel. If people find out that you don’t eat breakfast purposely they will look down upon you and aim malicious verbal intents directly at your soul. You could be totally ripped and that person could be a fat slob, and he/she will still feel right. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, remember?
If you’re bold enough, you will listen to all the negative comments left, right, and center. If you’re not, there’s always the option to pass on invites to breakfast, brunch, and lunch, and instead sit at home sipping on green tea and watching the Olympics.
Both options are ridiculous (even though the Olympics are awesome). That’s why intermittent fasting (IF) is stupid. I should know. I’ve been doing it for over a year and have written more than a few articles on the subject. Anyone can do a Google search on IF and find a plethora of ways to not eat – it’s pretty simple. The real problem is that society doesn’t approve of it, and that's where things get a little tricky.
This article is all about weaseling your way into having a social life and not being frowned upon for your food choices (or lack thereof in this case). Let’s gossip, shall we?
Don’t Tell People You’re Fasting
I remember reading on Dan Go’s blog a while ago that he will avoid telling people he is fasting at all costs. This is such a simple way to not have the subject brought up. If people find out you are purposely not eating, they will let you know how ridiculous you are. I’ve had to deal with this many times. Too many, actually. For some strange reason, my girlfriend (who is a very amazing and lovely woman) loves to tell people that I don’t eat breakfast. I’ve told people why more times than I’ve showered in the past year (and I have very exceptional hygiene). Luckily, I’ve learned some excuses that people will accept when the cat gets out of the bag.
"I'm just not that hungry in the morning" - I’ve found about half of people will accept this answer. Surprisingly, a lot of people aren’t hungry in the morning and can relate. For the other half, you need a better excuse.
"I'm detoxing." - Thanks to the media, people know that detoxing is healthy for the body. Whether or not people will agree with the claim, it’s socially acceptable to cleanse your body of all toxins. Personally, I think that intermittent fasting is an amazing tool for daily detoxing, so I have no problem giving this answer.
Whatever excuse you choose, always be polite, sincere, and say it with a smile.
When people invite you out for breakfast, you can go. Just because you don’t eat breakfast, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the company of your friends and family. Go, and order either water with lemon, tea, or coffee. People love their morning cup of Joe.
When asked why you’re not ordering (since this is bound to happen), use one of the two excuses above. Just last week, I was on a full-day fast, and my lovely girlfriend let the cat out of the bag again. This time, I used both of the excuses above, but my breakfast party didn’t budge. For some reason, they really felt strongly about the subject and wanted me to order something to eat. Luckily, I was quick on my feet and said, “It’s more important for me to see you guys and enjoy your company than it is to actually order food. I’m very happy with my lemon water and our good conversation.” It worked. Next subject please.
Likewise, we can’t overlook the second most popular beverage in human history: alcohol. No doubt about it, people get invited out for drinks all the time. We all know this. Accept it. While it may not be a problem for some people, there is always the chance that you will get invited to drinks on days you are doing a full-day fast.
No sweat; I have a solution. If you are at a loud bar, drink water with a lime in a fancy glass. People will assume you are drinking a gin and tonic. If people are with you at a table while you are ordering, you can still order this drink, but get ready for the age old question, “Why aren’t you drinking, Jason?” Just tell them you don’t feel like drinking, or that your stomach is bothering you. (And also that your name isn’t Jason.) If they’re cool, they’ll understand.
Your Fasting Solutions
So there you go, a handful of tips that continue to form my fasting habits and social interactions each and every day:
- First, never tell people you are fasting. That is a no-no.
- If the secret is let loose, tell people you’re not hungry or that you’re detoxing. Smile.
- Sometimes, people will insist you order food. Embrace their company instead while sipping on your coffee.
- When interaction is accompanied with alcohol, your fake gin and tonic will come in handy. Remember, people just don’t feel like drinking sometimes. It’s okay.
If all else fails, the Olympics coverage is still on for the next week. Just don’t run out of green tea.
Photos courtesy of Shutterstock.