So after what turned out to be more of a cheat day than a cheat meal, I set about my Monday to go back to my usual staple of veggies and fish. Monday started harmlessly enough with leftover curries from the weekend. Most of the broth remained but the bulk of the veggies were gone, so I loaded it in with my leftover veggies from the pho restaurant on Saturday night.
Then I set about my design work as usual. When I’m getting creative, I always seem to get MORE creative if I’m snacking away. I began craving sweets so I reached for a banana. What I really wanted was hummus — loads and loads and loads of hummus made from scratch, but since chickpeas are off-paleo I had to settle for something with a similar consistency, which lead me to the banana. (Maybe I can find a recipe for banana hummus or something. It probably won’t taste nearly as good though.) I bought so many last week that they were beginning to brown, which meant they were even sweeter than before. Score!
Then, an hour later, hunger struck again. I was in the mood for finger foods but was too lazy to prepare anything so I cracked open a bag of baby carrots and hot house cucumbers. I was reminded of how much I hated cucumbers to begin with. Not sure why I bought them in the first place. Maybe they’ll taste better when I load them in to the curry.
Then, the time came when I had to head out for class. I hadn’t even prepared a dinner to eat since I was so busy with client calls and working. I had no choice but to pack a rather large handful of dates and almonds for the road. It powered me through my 3 hour anatomy and pathology class.
This is where it got tricky. The minute I got to class, I began craving all of these foods that I hadn’t had in a long time. I started craving a ham sandwich (even though I haven’t had pork for seven years now!), and cheese enchiladas, and a grilled cheese animal style from In-n-Out. I talked it over with one of my classmates, who has been following my paleo progress, and lamented with me, which instantly took my mind off of the food. Anatomy and pathology went on and as we delved into diseases of the gastrointestinal system I was thoroughly disgusted and didn’t even want to think about eating another morsel of food.
After school, I stayed out a bit late hanging out with Shant at his office, so instead of grabbing a bite to eat I grabbed a small baggie of nut mix I had in my bag.
So, it wasn’t my best day, but it was decent. I totally skipped a major meal (probably not a good idea) but it didn’t seem to effect my energy or attention span. After weighing in, I’m happy to report that I’ve lost 6 pounds so far.
Some of it was water I’m sure, but it’s a nice first step. I put myself to the test today and went for a run around the neighborhood and already I feel a lot stronger, a little faster, and a bit lighter. To reward myself I signed up for a RunKeeper Fitness Class, the sub 2:30 half marathon. With only 100 weeks left to go before I have to achieve my Ironman goal, I can’t spare the time to stop training!!
How are you progressing on your goals? Chime in!
9 thoughts on “Paleo Day 8…Down 6 Pounds, Here Comes The Cravings, 100 Weeks Left”
I trained for the LA Marathon on a Paleo “inspired” diet after reading a lot about it on NerdFitness.com. Even with major new mileage milestones during the holiday season, consuming crap and quantity, I almost managed to reverse all my weight loss from the previous year. I wasn’t having that, so I took a hard look at my diet.
What had I NOT done? What had I NOT tried? I’ve been a vegetarian, a vegan, read Fit For Life, counted calories, drank cayenne spiked maple lemonade, you name it. What I’d never tried to do was really curb my carb intake. I scoffed at friends who went on these animal protein diets and gorged on bacon. They lost some weight, but how healthy were they? But my current repository of wisdom, NerdFitness.com, strongly promotes Paleo and has some compelling case studies. They basically challenged readers to try it for 30 days and just see how it goes. I figured I had nothing to lose.
I read a lot of internet resources about Paleo and quickly became aware of the controversies around different approaches, what foods are acceptable, what aren’t, how you can modify the diet if you’re an endurance athlete, or how you can train your body to process fat more efficiently and not require carb supplementing. What I think I’ve ended up with is a loose, high protein, low glycemic (for the most part), low (to NO) gluten diet with liberal servings of vegetables.
When I started, I’d never met a baked good I didn’t like, so I was somewhat shocked by the shear number of carbs I’d been consuming. And yes, that first week, going into the second, I craved carbs big time. I briefly tracked my food intake, long enough to realize that I had to consume a $h!+ ton of food to meet my protein requirements (don’t remember how I calculated my needs, but it was conservative). While training, I was consuming massive amounts of food to be satiated. After playing around with it for a couple-three weeks, I started to develop my own balance. Again, I don’t pretend to be pure Paleo, but this is such a significant change for me, and it appears to be working, so I’m running with it.
I’m just gonna put it right out there and list some non-Paleo foods I imbibe:
• 2% Greek Yogurt with defrosted TJ’s mixed berries, pan roasted walnuts, ground flax seed and 1/4 cup of serious tree-hugging muesli. This is my goto breakfast when I’m not eating eggs. It just feels healthy to me, has probiotics, fiber, a lot of protein, etc. and keeps me going for a long time. It’s my marathon day breakfast. Not too heavy for me, but just right.
• Cheese, not all the time. But I’d say it’d be in the top 1/3 of my pyramid.
• Hummus every now and then as a snack.• A little half and half, whole or 2% milk w/ tea, coffee or in recipes.• Soy sauce and a bit of tofu on the rare occasion.These are the foods I live by:
• Hard boiled eggs
• Almonds + a variety of other nuts & seeds (I keep a big fat bag in my car)
• Trader Joes Almond butter w/ flax (I eat about 16oz/wk with apples. This is crack.)
• TJ’s turkey jerky
• Animal & fish protein• Sweet potatoes
• TJ’s Southern Greens Mix
• Every and all veggies usually steamed, raw or stir fry. Lotsa color.
• TJ’s Frozen Very Cherry Berry Blend
• Ground flax seed (a great breading for fish…)
• Almond flour (good combined with flax for another breading alternative)
• Unsweetened Almond Milk
Foods that I avoid (that I use to consume all the time):
• Flour (white & wheat)
• Bread & pasta
• Rice (All)
• White sugar, and most sweeteners (except a bit of agave here and there or in my home made sports drink and sometimes a raw sugar in the rare decaf coffee)
• Almost all deserts (unless they are made of fruit. Sometimes I do a little raw food deserts if they don’t feel too much like faux food)
I eat a fair amount of fruit, but I tend to try and time it for post exercise. Apples I pretty much eat as a desert or snack w/ almond butter. I’ve also taken to those goes of little clementines they have at TJ’s. A recent addition, they are starting to rival my almond butter intake.
I try to avoid processed food with scary ingredient lists, but if I do go there I watch out for nitrates and things I can’t pronounce. Also I try to consume 20-30 grams of protein first thing in the AM, within 30-45 after waking. I read somewhere Tim Ferriss saying this is the single most important thing anyone can do for weight loss.
For my training, here’s my other Paleo compromises:
• I carbo load the night before my marathon with 1 cup of some serious hot cereal that I make with TJ’s multigrain hot cereal (oats, millet, etc.), teff, quinoa, walnuts, flax with almond milk on top. Not much of a carbo load, but it helps me sleep and I think contributes to a nice slow energy burn for the following day.
• I make what I call “go juice” for nursing throughout 1/2 marathon, or longer, runs. Basically the juice of a lemon, lime or orange, 1/4 tsp mineral-heavy sea salt, 1 small box of coconut water, 1 cup green tea, 2 tbsp dark agave & top it off with water.
• I nurse 1 Kids Zbar Honey Graham Cliffbar based any sensation of hunger. My half marathon I at 1 bite. I ate the whole thing for the LA Marathon.
• I do my yogurt breakfasts usually about 1.5-2hrs before I run.
Finally I drink enough green tea, of all varieties, to support a small tea growing community.
I guess I got a little carried away here. Turned into an opportunity to kinda review my journey. Dig the Withings weight chart!
Hey Mark! Thanks so much for sharing all of that. It certainly helps to see how other endurance athletes are approaching paleo. There’s so many times I hear from non-athletes that carbs are the devil, but honestly how can I achieve my mileage requirements without it?!
I also like your list of compromises. They don’t seem nearly as bad as they could be 😉
I will have to try your “go juice” although to be honest, I don’t know how I would deal with that much salt in my elixir. Although maybe I just haven’t noticed the taste of salt in my nuun tabs. Who knows. All I know is that if something is super salty I generally get turned off!!
If you enjoy green tea, you should definitely check out a few tea places that my boyfriend dug up…there’s Bird Pick in Santa Monica and their parent company Wing Jep or something or other in Chinatown. (I know it by the location, not by the name!!)
Love that Wing Hop Fung in Chinatown. When I buy locally, that’s where I go. Since I drink so much loose leaf tea, I’m always looking for a deal! Lately the guys at summittea.com have been taking good care of me. They’ve got some nice selections, Prime shipping offers on Amazon and some interesting teas not listed on either site, that if you get them talking they sometimes share.
As for my “Go Juice,” keep in mind that makes about 32 oz or more. So 1 level 1/4 teaspoon of salt gets really watered down. From what I understand it’s comparable, if not less than what’s in all the bottled/powdered sports drinks out there. After a long run I can literally slough the salt off my skin! Combined with coconut water it helps provide the salt and potassium needed for a good electrolyte balance. At least that’s the theory!
My Withings Scale weight chart:
Trying again, as it didn’t post previously for some reason.
Oh and how about a congrats on kicking @$$ like you usually do?!
Also, I don’t own a Withings scale…That’s just too classy for me. 🙂 I do have a scale that also monitors body fat though. Unfortunately the battery is a bit low so the numbers are all off!
Yeah, I wouldn’t bet money on their body fat accuracy, but I do feel comfortable that they track the trend fairly well. Got mine as a present from my wife when they first came out. I love it.
I’m all about tracking the data as long as I don’t have to do too much data entry!
Down 6-7 lbs already? What? The IM is on my list too but my little guy is only 2 so I need a few more years. I’m not sure if 2014 or 2015 will be the year. It kinda depends on him. But I am anxious. Good luck!
I’m almost positive that it was all bloating/water weight…maybe a little bit of fat loss. These next few weeks will be much more telling! I’m gunning for an IM before I’m 30 but that may change if I start Chinese Medicine school before that…at the very least it’s on my bucket list 🙂
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