Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the Christian time of atonement called Lent. On this day the fast means simple small meals--no snacks. Unlike other religions where the followers don't eat from sunrise to sunset, we are allowed small simple meals.
If you see people with ashes on their foreheads today, they have attended church services where the palms from palm Sunday are burned to ash and placed on the forehead in the sign of the cross to remind the followers that they are nothing without God.
One of the special gifts of being human is our ability to see outside ourselves and to realize that we can change. We can grow. We can be better than we imagined. That kind of sight begins with deep introspection as to what we have done, where we have been and how that differs from where we want to be. So no matter your religious practice--our ability to fast and atone makes us special. Allows us to grow and believe that we can be better than we ever imagined. Cheers~