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December 17, 2017

When I started fasting I was doing it for some unproven health benefits. I quickly realized one benefit immediately, which is more patience.

I usually finish eating by six in the evening, which means I don’t have breakfast until at least ten the next morning. The hunger doesn’t bother me until the nine o’clock hour, when I’m usually downstairs doing weights. Nothing makes a boring workout even less enjoyable than being really hungry.

“I’m so hungry!” one voice inside says. “Yeah. So?” the other one counters. “Good point,” the first voice says. The pangs, now acknowledged, fade a little bit. A few minutes later they start up again. But they quickly pass, again, because nothing’s changed. “Breakfast is at ten. Get over it.”

Here’s what I’ve learned. Hunger is not an emergency. I knew that, but fasting reinforces it. You don’t have to indulge every desire the minute it flares up. That’s a life lesson that comes in handy all the time.