Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
21 Nov

A Midweek Kick in the Pants

Do it!Every Friday I love highlighting stories about men and women who took the challenge and transformed their lives. Whatever their circumstances (e.g. diabetes, obesity, chronic autoimmune conditions), they grabbed hold of the Primal process and made it their own. Whether they went cold turkey or began in fits and starts, they eventually committed 100% and got the life they wanted. It doesn’t get any better than that. That’s why I wonder so much about folks who come to MDA on a regular basis but never really get so far as to implement the content in their own lives. Whether it’s information about low (or even moderate) carbing, moving frequently, standing workstations, going barefoot or relishing good natural fat, their interest never translates into action.

I’ll call them earnest lurkers. They’re regular readers and enjoy the community here, but somehow the rubber never meets the road. Sound familiar? (No need to slink back in your chair – seriously.) They enjoy what they read, but then they sort of ignore/forget about it and go back to doing the same old thing. So, they come back for more inspiration and a few more ideas. So armed, they muster up a little more resolve but then never quite get things off the ground. It becomes an ongoing passive cycle. Maybe they’re doing some parts right like surrounding themselves with positive influences (e.g. the MDA community) and learning about how to live healthily – Primally. Yet, they never really make the plunge and stay content to dabble.

You’ve of course heard the old saying about “&%@# or get off the pot.” I’m not suggesting anyone stop reading MDA or not look to this forum or other like-minded communities for support and inspiration. However, there’s a certain confusion about one’s intent if you keep coming back for something you never take on. What’s keeping you at a polite (and thoroughly ineffective) distance?

I think people in this situation often run the risk of self-identification by mere association. In other words, you can read about something for so long that you end up feeling like you’re a true blue follower even though you’re more of a passive onlooker. Although I appreciate anyone’s readership, the fact remains that the Primal Blueprint doesn’t happen by osmosis. Ultimately, it’s a crying shame because instead of nodding in agreement, you could be feeling amazing at this very minute. The PB isn’t an intellectual exercise. It’s a blueprint for living, and either you’re living it – or you’re not.

Let me say I’m not picking on anyone. The truth is, I think we all at some point in our lives need a swift kick. For whatever reason there’s a psychic blockage that we can’t snap ourselves out of. After weeks or months or years (or decades) of denial, someone calls us out in a way that first gets our dander up but ultimately shifts the ground enough for real change.

Nor am I talking about unquestioning compliance with every suggested activity.

As someone who devoutly questions authority, I don’t ever encourage obedience just on principle. (That’s why I designed a blueprint and not a regimen.) What I’m talking about is grabbing the ball and running with it instead of sitting in the stands time and again watching it go from place to place – observing other people’s game instead of pursuing your own. What’s the point, really?

At the heart of this hemming and hawing or general passivity lurk a few motivations, I believe. Sure, one can be sheer laziness: I want to show up and enjoy the community but not do the actual work. The thing is, those people eventually seem to float elsewhere over time. If you’re reading but consistently coming back, I think there’s something deeper at play. Call it self-directed stone-walling, an inward withholding from yourself – of better health and a better life.

Address whatever is going on – the nonsense about I’m not capable or I don’t deserve the good life in the same way other people do or it’s never really going to happen that way for me. Bull. Dump the self-defeating attitude. Resolve to end the self-sabotage. (Seriously, accept it for that.) Analyze it if you will, but the point is to move on even if you have to fake it until you make it. Fake the confidence if you don’t feel quite worthy. Fake the motivation if you feel (or even know) that you’re 100% lazy. Fake the self-image if you think on some subterranean level that you shouldn’t and won’t ever be thin/healthy/successful/happy. Faking it will at times hurt. It will take energy. It might even take more energy than working out and lifting the chopping knife to make yourself that Big A$$ Salad you’ve always meant to make for lunch. No matter. Work your own sense of worthiness or optimism or diligence as a muscle, and expect the same stress, fatigue and progress along the way.

So, have we cast every phantom excuse into the light of day? What’s left that’s keeping you hiding or distant? Are you willing to put it out there on public display? (Trust me, it will feel good having done it.)

By all means, read. Visit. Chat. But more than any of that, manifest. No one can do this part for you, but everything meaningful hinges on it. Make yourself a Primal plan every single day if you have to. What am I going to do today to get my butt in the game? Bring some chicken thighs and cut vegetables for lunch? Get sun over the weekend instead of sit inside? Hit the gym on the way home? Practice a mini power outage and be coaxed into a natural bedtime? Then do it. The next day, do it some more. Start edging out all the garbage that doesn’t work for you in your life and health. Come back for more ideas to elbow out more still. Nod less. Do more – today of course.

Anyone willing to admit being in the hot seat today? What’s been holding you back from taking the plunge? What’s the first thing you’re going to commit to right now? Does this ring true of your past with the PB? If so, what gave you the swift kick to get going? Looking forward to reading your thoughts… Thanks for stopping by today, everyone.

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Time and money, and a little stress, like so many others have said!

    If you’d write a corollary book – on how to do PB on a college-type budget and an overloaded schedule, that’d be awesome. I’ve seen the occasional post around here on how to save money, or make things easier, but more often it’s just “Oh, just buy -one- session with a personal trainer rather than a whole year” or “You don’t need those little luxuries that keep you sane, spend the money on some grass-fed beef instead” etc.

    I go partially primal when I can manage it, but that’s often just a short time, before I have no time to go on daily grocery trips and work in an extra workout, and I wind up just grabbing fast food around the edges of work. Granted, it still helps to look at what the options are – but when you’re trying to pick out primal food at McDonalds, things start to slip. XD

    Adrian wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • This is not a total answer, but recently I was living a workaholic lifestyle (short-term and intentional) and the meal-planning chapter in the cookbook “Well Fed” was pretty useful. Basically I started mostly following Mel’s advice for one day of mega-food-prep (3 hours on Sunday night with a couple podcasts, in the kitchen) and I’d have essentially 15-21 easy meals to either bring to school or collapse with after work. She had some good recipes too for working with cheaper cuts of meat (chicken thighs instead of breasts, etc) and where I was living the veggies were super-cheap. I didn’t buy bread or milk, which can both be significant costs if you eat a lot of it, so $20 of meat and $10 of veggies and $10 of random was pretty fine and cheaper than going out to eat.

      kt wrote on November 21st, 2013
  2. You caught me! I’ve been lurking and dabbling for months, and only this week did I sit down with myself and decide to resolve what’s holding me back from committing. It’s 2 things: 1) I hate to be an inconvenience to anyone, and saying “I don’t eat grains or sugar” (put simply) can make having me over for dinner a challenge, and 2) I’m an emotional eater, and I’m going through huge life changes. BUT those are both things that I can overcome, and I am more determined than ever to do so, especially because I now have a major goal in mind: hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2015.

    Thank you for calling us lurkers out, Mark! I feel like it’s a sign.

    maddie lion wrote on November 21st, 2013
  3. There is so much good information here not related to eating. I was one of the many that read every day, because of all the interesting topics. I love to read and learn. I finally took the plunge three months ago. I can’t get enough of the lifestyle. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Jason wrote on November 21st, 2013
  4. And on a parting note, from the mind of the all worldly yoda:
    “do, or do not, there is no try”….

    Jason wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • I like that very much

      Sharon Elliott wrote on November 22nd, 2013
    • My feelings exactly! That’s the phrase I use to get out the door and walking, walking, walking…

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  5. I recently discovered a gadget that has really added to my primal existence…. a wok!

    I am getting tons of great veggies, and I cook with Organic olive oil and pastured butter from Ireland.
    I just don’t tire of this health food, and it’s so quick and easy to prepare.


    Jboy wrote on November 21st, 2013
  6. I am a loyal reader, but not so much a loyal follower! I have every book written by Mark and often use the cookbooks. However, as many have commented, stress and my oral reaction to it have been my downfall. I know that I should do this. I am 51, overweight, and on 3 hypertension meds. Just got diagnosed with sleep apnea as well. Even with all that, I often binge on chips, fries, etc. in a misplaced desire to comfort myself. Booze is my big downfall. Mostly wine and beer, but generally every night, again as a liquid stress reliever. A lot of empty calories and it breaks down my brakes on stuffing bad food into my pie hole.

    Steven wrote on November 21st, 2013
  7. Confession is good for the soul, no?

    Long time lurker, long time (decades) sufferer of fibromyalgia, overweight, 61 next month and recently diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. I have been on and off primal type eating for many years and always revert to SAD. Self defeating behavior for sure. The “not thinking I deserve to be thin/fee good” et cetera hit home.

    MizChriz wrote on November 21st, 2013
  8. I can’t decide if you would call me primal or not.
    I eat about 90% primal food all the time.
    I sleep by the sun time.
    I have a small tribe around me.
    I play with my one child.
    But the move slowly and lift heavy things, does not happen.
    I can sure talk the talk but the walk just doesn’t happen.

    Debi wrote on November 21st, 2013
  9. I don’t think I’ve commented before but I read MDA everyday. I found it because I was experiencing awful stomach pains and nausea after every meal starting when I was 18 and left for college. I tried every diet out there to fix my issues, I even went Vegetarian (this was awful steak, ham and bacon are my favorite foods)! Then my mom found the whole 30 and MDA and its all history, however I feel like a lurker because I still have some weight to lose despite being “primal” for almost 2 years, and because of the college atmosphere I find myself drinking on the weekends or going out for sushi occasionally because we are celebrating and its “gluten free” with almost no exercise to go along with it.

    I definitely needed this kick in the a** Mark to get myself together and remember that just because I want to celebrate or I’m really busy I shouldn’t eat crap and that I need to be less hard on myself when it comes to vegetables that may be higher in carbs. Any vegetables are healthier than no vegetables at all!

    Primal Munchkin wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • You don’t have to give up special foods to celebrate, Primal Munchkin. Just learn to substitute another (PB) food and you’ll do fine. For example – popcorn at the movies. No problem since I pack (don’t tell anyone) a small bag of Macadamia nuts. I still have my treat but it’s PB!

      I need to buy Mark’s Primal Comforts book! Next on my list…

      Step by step, grasshopper!

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
      • Make that Primal Cravings!!!

        Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  10. Guilty as charged. I found Paleo a few years ago and I’ve made some great changes in my life. Dropped sugar, keep the carbs low, avoid grains, etc. But consistency has been difficult for me. No excuses… just is what it is.

    I read MDA daily and it seems that whatever I’m struggling with at the moment surfaces in an article that appears to be directed at me personally. I suppose this means (and reading the other confirms for me) that I’m no different than others.

    For me, I think it’s a self-defeating attitude that’s holding me back. I’ve tried and failed so many times that I’ve convinced myself that I’m destined to be overweight.

    Thank you, Mark for having such insight into your community!

    Lisa wrote on November 21st, 2013
  11. I’ve been a lurker for nearly a year now – this is my first ever comment : ) I have been a vegetarian my whole life (31 years) but in the last six months I have introduced fish to my diet. I still have a big psychological hurdle to overcome regarding eating meat which is stopping me from fully committing to the primal lifestyle. I’ve cut back on grains by about 80% but I find it difficult to make good food choices when I am away from home and still reach for the sugary snacks when I am stressed. My mum got into the paleo thing at the end of last year and started eating meat for the first time in about 35 years. She feels much better for it – and has apologised for raising my brother, sister and I as vegetarians! If there is a positive side to it though it’s that my siblings and I are all generally pretty health conscious and have never eaten a SAD diet or fast food. But can anyone who has been in a similar situation give some advice as to how to get over my aversion to meat?

    Aimi wrote on November 21st, 2013
  12. I “lurked” for all of 2 weeks. I incorporated Mark’s ideas and teachings in a little over a month…that was in April of this year. I haven’t felt this good in…well I honestly can’t remember. I have lost 45 pounds since and only have a few more to go.

    I thought I was going to have trouble eliminating the grains because I was a huge bread junky. But I realized how it made me feel when I didn’t eat it any more; no more bloating, no more fatigue. That is what made me stick to it. I eat and I’m not tired. I’m actually energized. I’m satisfied, not “full”. And i am thankful for the ideas and support this community shares.

    Ben wrote on November 21st, 2013
  13. I am a lurker, but not just a lurker. I have eaten a mostly primal diet most of my adult life, except that I crave sweets really badly. So I am addicted to dark chocolate and sugarless gum.
    Otherwise, I eat meat, veggies, eggs, salads,etc most of the time. Breakfast for me this morning was brussel sprouts, chicken and sweet potatoes. I don’t really eat grains unless I eat real sourdough bread, long fermented. I repost Mark’s articles and try to help others see there is hope. However, I just moved into my parents house to help them out as they are elderly and need help. Their diet is VERY SAD. My mother has congestive heart failure (two heart operations), thyroid disease (her thyroid was so destroyed it was removed), and gall bladder failure (it was also removed). My dad has terrible rheumatoid arthritis, and type II diabetes.
    I figure most of their ailments are related to their SAD diet. I have started to introduce salads and more veggies into their diet, but they eat lots of white bread, white rice, cookies, candy, treats, sweets, pasta, sauces, thick gravy,etc etc.
    I just told them I can’t eat any types of flour/grains except fermented sourdough. So they let me eat my own thing.
    I wish I could figure out why I am so addicted to sugar. Sure, I have cut it down to dark chocolate, sugarless gum (which I feel is bad for me) and occasional ice cream, but I was super addicted to sugar my whole life and have struggled with it forever,( scrounging pennies to buy ice cream and candy on my way home from school when I was little).
    I am guessing it was the VERY SAD diet my parents provided me. Even though I was the only one who liked vegetables, I didn’t have access to many. I remember eating dry cereal for breakfast, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch and white toast after school. Meat was served mostly on Sundays. :(
    So I need to dive all the way in but my addiction to something sweet, even dark chocolate keeps me from diving in. Any ideas on cutting the addiction? Thanks primal friends!

    Teresa wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • This might not help, but usually it takes 3 weeks to break a bad habit. Can you cold turkey sugar? After 3 weeks, you just might be free.

      Nocona wrote on November 21st, 2013
      • Thanks, going cold turkey is probably the only way for me.

        Teresa wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Sounds like me, LOVE sugar!!! However, I choose to ignore the cravings (I get a headache and nappish w/in 30 minutes after eating a candy bar) and so far it’s working to cold turkey it.
      The problem with me eating sugar every day was that it did NOT make me gain weight…. didn’t make me feel good either, so I know it’s poison and just treat myself with meat.

      2Rae wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • I’ve been eating two servings of PB-approved fruit per day (one between breakfast and lunch & the other after dinner) and find that satisfies my sweet tooth 99% of the time. When I give in by eating a small (1 scoop) cup of ice cream (my downfall) it may taste great going down but I feel so guilty afterward it ruins the enjoyment.

      Putting on blinders and bypassing the ice cream case in markets also helps!

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  14. Great article today Mark! I too was a lurker until I landed 11 weeks ago. I wanted to rid myself of my wheat belly and have already done so. I have gone 90/10 primal and feel fantastic for a person 60+ in age. I believe that the majority of lurkers will eventually land on this eating and exercise plan once they connect with stories that really hit home to them. My hubby’s meals all consist of carbs and cereal is his go to at night. I cook what he wants and prepare my primal meals. We are all in control of what we eat, not what someone else is eating. Get control and just do it, you won’t regret it!

    Laurie wrote on November 21st, 2013
  15. I have been a lurker for a long time. I have managed to eat pretty primal most of the time. However I have also abused alcohol to deal with my stress. I have always loved cooking. I am a food snob and I love wine. I got in the habit of coming home after a stressful day and popping open a bottle of wine and cooking. While I usually was cooking something primal I told myself the wine was practically primal and I was only having a few glasses. It helped me relax and it felt great. Over the past 2 years I have put on about 15 pounds. I know it has been the wine. But I kept telling myself that it was my 20 or my 80/20 lifestyle. I started having more than a few glasses and then I was having more than a few glasses every night. I have a stressful job, my husband has a stressful job, we have 3 kids and a crazy busy lifestyle. So I finally had enough…last sunday I took a hard look at myself in the mirror. I realized that I was heading down the slippery slope of alcoholism if I didn’t change my relationship with wine. But it became a habit, almost a compulsion and more nights than not after having some wine I had more than an inclination to eat something carb-loaded, like a giant bowl of tortilla chips. They are gluten free after all. So I made the commitment. I told my husband that I had to quit drinking right now. It was making me unhealthy and unhappy with myself so it needs to go. I want my pants to fit again. I needed some accountability so I ordered the 90 primal blue print journal. I am committed to getting back on track. I want my ideal body back. I also know that my drinking was causing me to not deal with my feelings of insecurity and failure. So I have decided to look it in the face, wrestle it to the ground and rise above. So I have had 5 days of no wine. And I am on my second day of journalling. I can’t wait to see what 90 days brings. The holidays will be challenging. I am going to strive for progress and not perfection. I am going to forgive myself for not being perfect and when I stumble I will get up brush off the dust and I will keep moving on. My only goal is that I will do better today than I did yesterday.

    Laura wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Good for you, Laura. “Progress and not perfection.” You’ve got a great attitude and I hope you enjoy your life without the alcohol. It will be worth it.

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  16. Yeah, I’m a bit like what Mark has described, if not completely. I’ve done the easy stuff like replacing canola oil with olive, butter, ghee etc, giving up junk food and sweets, eating more fruit and vegetables, switching lowfat to full-fat dairy, and walking everywhere.
    1. I’m already healthy (not overweight, underweight, IR, or sick in any way) and already have lots of energy so I don’t have any negative reinforcement. Don’t fix what ain’t broke right?
    2. I was raised vegetarian and don’t like the taste/texture of meat. Yes, I’ll eat a little bit maybe 5 times a week but I couldn’t bring myself to eat as much as Mark recommends.
    3. My family eats rice, tubers and legumes on a regular basis and are pretty healthy, so they wouldn’t stop, and I don’t want to single myself out. I enjoy the social cohesion and delicious taste more than any additional health. That said I do try to eat more of the meat and vegetables and limit the grain to one corner of my plate.

    Miryem wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • So basically I read MDA for the information so I can consider what I want to apply to my life. It’s already been a great help, but I don’t think I’ll ever go completely primal – that is, lots of meat and super low carbs (like veg and a little fruit only).

      Miryem wrote on November 21st, 2013
  17. I think the main thing I’m taking away from the comments section today is to not date and/or marry someone who isn’t Primal 😐 Sounds like a headache I don’t want to endure.

    Stacie wrote on November 21st, 2013
  18. Geez, didn’t know you could see me over the web! I own the 21 Day book. I own one of the PB recipe books (you know, the “easy” one). I have Robb Wolf’s book, and the Paleo Primer (and whatever PB book came free with that). Just read the “Bonus” thread and the “Fake complaints” thread again for inspiration. Am I primal. No.

    I am really going to do it this time. Not all at once. That slow cut out grains and sugar first thing. What has stopped me before? I don’t know. Tried something similar a few months ago and lost two pounds pretty easily. I like to blame my husband. “He’s the reason I don’t cook because he doesn’t like onions, and what does every recipe start with?” “I can’t cook fish because he won’t eat it.” “It’s easier just to order in!”

    But we both need to do this, and there is no way he will start unless I can prove it with results first. So I need to do this for the both of us, no matter that I’ll have to put out an effort (shop?? cook???) before I get all this wonderful energy people are talking about. I just need to get over the inertia hump, get going, lose 25 pounds relatively fast (you know, in less than the year it took me last time with a different method) (and yes, I regained it, of course), and tell my husband that hey, look, this works! You should do it too!

    Amy wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • So don’t use the onion. I don’t. My family will not eat the real thing. But they don’t know I have added some onion powder. Gives the flavor with out the whole onion.

      Debi wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • My hubby became very onion sensitive over the years, even to onion powder! I season with garlic now. Rosemary goes nicely with garlic, as does basil.

      gibson wrote on November 21st, 2013
  19. Lurker here. I think.

    Been reading MDA for 3+ years. Changed my understanding of life and nutrition when I found it.

    Took about a year, then I went whole hog for a summer, lost 30 pounds (200 down to 170). That was 2011. (For those who comment on kids, we had a one year old).

    Then I softened, but was still 80/20, and maintained 180, felt good, looked good, exercised somewhat regularly for about a year. During this time, we had our second daughter. Felt great.

    Then, toward the middle of 2012, into 2013, reigns loosened, and I gained the weight back and exercise regime went to hades. Also had our third, so part of that was “sympathy weight gain” during my wife’s pregnancy.

    So I’m back up to around 200, don’t work out much, and work (sitting down) at a computer for most of the day. I also really prefer beer over wine…

    Bottom line, I appreciate the kick in the pants, but I think it’s important to recognize that it’s never “over.” You’re never “there.” I thought I was there for over a year, and it had changed my life for good. Wrong. Having kids and changing jobs (all wonderful changes, by the way), means life changes, routines change, and you get thrown back on the vicious wheel of conventional, unhealthy, modern living, and you have to fight your way back out.

    And that’s just it – it’s a fight. It’s always a fight. That’s why we lurkers keep coming back. Because some days I’m fighting, and some days I’m lurking. And checking this blog daily is one of the ways I can tilt the balance.

    James wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • You are right, it is a fight…or as I call it a commitment; a choice. I sometimes hate working all day at a desk job everyday, coming home every night and preparing a meal, from scratch, for my family…still have to feed the animals, and take care of all the other stuff…but it is a commitment, a lifestyle, a choice, but it is so worth it in the end. I want to go into my retirement years with enough vitality to enjoy them, not end up living in a retirement home rotting away in a rocking chair…it is a choice like everything else in life.

      Rosalie wrote on November 21st, 2013
  20. I’m not wholly primal, but I don’t eat SAD either. I’ve been a vegetarian most of my life, and was going through a low spot health-wise (brain fog, mild depression, sudden allergies, weight gain etc). I couldn’t ignore all the information I ran into at the MDA – it helped that I was a vegetarian by culture (many, many Indians are brought up as vegetarians) rather than dogma. I spent two months mulling over the possibility of eating meat, and one fine day (it helped that it was Jan 1) I stood resolutely in the queue for the grill at my workplace, and choked down my first wild-caught salmon fillet.

    Since then I’ve been eating wild-caught fish(salmon when in season) five times a week. I don’t eat any other meat, or cook fish at home. I’m lucky to work at a place where they offer wild-caught fish at subsidized rates.I also eat pastured eggs, lots of veggies, some fruit, grass-fed cheese (occasionally), and mostly avoid grains (except rice). I cook traditional Indian food at home, and eat quite a bit of white rice and legume-based recipes (properly soaked and prepared, very Sally Fallonesque). And Indian food tastes best when cooked with ghee! I’ve also removed all vegetable oils from my diet. I use ghee/coconut oil/mac nut oil. I also consume coconut oil in coffee like nobody’s business.

    Sugar (though I’ve switched to less evil forms like coconut palm sugar, honey, and maple syrup) is still my vice. Working on that.

    I’ve toned down my workouts since I began reading MDA. More fun stuff like climbing and ping pong, and less mileage on the treadmill. It’s a lot more fun, and I don’t feel any less fit.

    primalnoob wrote on November 21st, 2013
  21. Hmmm. Well, I suppose I am a lurker. I don’t implement primal 100% for sure. I come here for inspiration and to continue to improve. I come here for information and inspiration and recipes and help with my health problems.

    Mark, I do feel kind of put out that you don’t seem to welcome anyone but “converts”. You may view impediments as lame excuses, but that’s not really fair.

    Moving towards is better than away. Every change you make is positive.

    Yeah, not feeling the positive love like usual. Bummed out, in fact.

    Colleen wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • +1

      Miryem wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • You gotta want it for yourself…someone else can’t get you to do it.

      Rosalie wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Mark isn’t turning you away – he’s acknowledging that you exist and trying to focus on you with today’s post. Don’t be a victim, be thankful that there are folks out there who understand what you are going through and trying to help you. Read through these replies. You’re not alone by any means.

      Pure Hapa wrote on November 21st, 2013
      • +1

        Mark Sisson wrote on November 21st, 2013
      • Trying to be honest about how I felt after reading the post. I am mostly primal-food wise. I struggle with the movement portion-some of that related to health issues, some related to my lack of motivation. I guess the point I was trying to make was-what makes you a lurker? Is it 0% primal? 50/50% 80/20%. Does your percentage make you more welcome or of value?

        I’ve turned so many people on to this website. Bought the book, shared my successes with family, but I am not a total success story. Does that make me a lurker?

        I agree with Mark that the Friday success stories are inspiring. Yet, often a comment by those people is that it took them a few tries to get it all going. Sometimes people need to shadow along and feel the swell of the wave of the hardcore to get them moving. It takes some longer.

        I felt that the post may not just inspire people to commit fully, but exclude some who are not. Just my opinion, and enjoying all the comments.

        Colleen wrote on November 22nd, 2013
        • I initially felt the same way after reading today’s post, Colleen. But I also started answering “yes” to some of Mark’s questions.

          I began a couple of months ago and am still not quite 100% PB. I may never be 100% but am working on being the best 80%/20% PBer I can be. I’ve given up all grains, beans/legumes, and most dairy. I’m getting my daily sun time and my long walks as well. Not heavy-lifting or sprinting yet but may include that as the weight drops and I’m not afraid of hurting my knees. I turned 70 a few weeks ago and just don’t see myself sprinting but I’ve learned never to say never so we’ll see.

          I come to this forum on a daily basis for inspiration and also to help (if I can) those who are starting from a similar place. I’m always picking up some tidbit of information (love the recipes) and guidance from real PBers and don’t plan to ever stop “lurking.”

          Grok On!

          Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  22. Ive had no problems when it comes to eating, id say I’m probably 80\20 and happy with that. Can’t afford grass fed or pasteured anything, but I’m grain and sugar free for three months now(have lost 20lbs so far). My problem is exercise. I just. Can’t. Motivate. I plan, i organize, it all looks great on paper. But then i just sit. And sit. I sit 90% of my waking hours. How can i motivate myself to get some activity the same way i motivate myself to eat this way? Anybody? Ideas? I’m gonna go sit down while i wait for a response….

    PaleoPete wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Hi PaleoPete ~ Have you tried scheduling on your calendar and then treating it like any other appointment you must keep? It took me a few attempts at this but that is what I’m doing now and it seems to be working.

      I started with writing in (in INK!) my exercise (just long walks – 30 min. – 1 hr. for now) on Mon. Weds. & Fri., with 1/2 hr. with weighs on Tues., Thurs. & Sat. Sundays – I either do whatever I want or zilch.

      Try it – one day at a time. Good luck to you. If this doesn’t work for you – just keep trying until you find a routine that does.

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
      • I need to add something else, PaleoPete ~

        It wasn’t as easy as it might seem from my post. Getting out the door is the hardest part for me. I need to ask “What’s In It For Me?” I had to make a list of the positive results and then recite that list to myself when I need motivation. If I can do that and Just. Get. Out. The. Door. – I’m fine. No problem. It’s getting up and out the door that I still struggle with – but I’m getting better at it. And so will you. I know it sounds trite and obvious but – Just Do It!

        Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  23. I came across MDA a couple of weeks back, probably as a result of reading and visiting the Wheat Belly site, and I’ve started PB implementation. I went low carb about 7 years ago and went from 205 lbs to 153 lbs over 18 months (5’11”). I floated back up to about 158 over the years, probably from too many sweet potatoes and such. Now I know that wheat is bad news. Today, I weighed 153 and my psoriasis is starting to heal and IBS is gone. I have you and MDA and all the success stories to thank! (Wheat Belly, too, but I like this site better)

    ROY wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Try some coconut oil for the psoriasis, apply topically.

      Rosalie wrote on November 21st, 2013
      • Thanks… will do.

        ROY wrote on November 21st, 2013
  24. I stared mortality in the face years ago – long story, but that experience made me a doer. I went Primal with my husband almost three years ago now.

    Yes, you will cheat. Yes, there will be weeks on end when you drop your fitness regimen. We’re human and it is hard to have temptations all around us and the TV or computer calling us to watch instead of play.

    I think many don’t come aboard because they feel if they cheat they won’t be able to look themselves in the mirror; or feel like a failure, let themselves down, etc. So they just do nothing.

    It’s like kids who don’t study because they put so much pressure on themselves to be perfect that they just don’t participate at all.

    But when you do nothing out of that sense that you won’t be perfect, you are doing yourself a huge disservice. You’re sitting on the sidelines of your own life because you may not get an A grade. Right?

    It’s like this country song:

    “…when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

    I hope you dance….I hope you dance.

    I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,
    Never settle for the path of least resistance
    Livin’ might mean takin’ chances but they’re worth takin’….
    ….Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance,
    And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

    I hope you dance….I hope you dance.
    (Time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along,
    Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder where those years have gone.)”

    Dance people, dance! Be a doer! Do it for yourself! Don’t wait for some ideal time down the road. The time is now.

    Pure Hapa wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Thank you so much Pure Hapa ~

      “…when you do nothing out of that sense that you won’t be perfect, you are doing yourself a huge disservice. You’re sitting on the sidelines of your own life because you may not get an A grade. Right?”

      See why I “lurk” Mark? This comment could apply so so many facets of our lives beyond health/weight. This is just one of the reasons I will continue to read MDA. Maybe I’m “actively lurking” ?

      I got the feeling that you assume everyone who lurks doesn’t also do. That is not always the case. I know your intent was to movitvate us but I think it came off a little heavy. JMO – Still a lurker AND a doer.

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
      • that should be – how about “motivate” us.

        Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  25. I started back in April, after blowing out a knee just because I was over weight and inactive…I am 58 years old and was fed up with being borderline hypertension and borderline diabetic. I was also planning my first trip to Europe 3 months after the knee issue, and knew I could never get through my trip without being able to walk. Make a long story short, I dropped 25 lbs, no longer suffer from inflamation, look 15 years younger, have no more knee problems, look great great, feel great, but the best part is, my blood pressure which ranged 145/95 for the past 3 years, is now 115/65…and I never suffer any cravings for hunger pangs. My husband has also dropped 20 lbs, just by eating the paleo meals I am preparing. I bake a paleo bread/muffin each weekend with almond or coconut flour, which satisfies my love of breads, only there is no guilt!!! I eat bacon and eggs everyday, and blood work is perfect. I hope to live long and healthy in retirement as we have many places to go!!

    Rosalie wrote on November 21st, 2013
  26. Ouch! Umm… Yeah… I’m a primal eater, probably 80/20 – terrible on the exercise and sleep. I know what I need to do, just not motivated to do it… yet… I’m going to keep lurking though in hopes that the motivation will strike. This very harsh post just might do the trick… 😉

    Ara wrote on November 21st, 2013
  27. I’m a lurker. Probably for about 2 years now. I had many false starts. I would do great for a couple of months and then completely fall flat on my face, and it would take a long time before I could get myself back to being able to start again. Part of the problem is I was not seeing weight loss results – nor was I able to get off or even reduce any of my medication like others have, and that was really discouraging. Another part of the problem is I hate cooking – I do it because I have to, but I don’t enjoy it and often get burnt out. And yet, a third part of the problem is that hearing how I *must* eat grass-fed this and pastured that wears down on me because I cannot afford it, nor do I have much access to those things. Kerrygold butter is about as good as it gets, and I can only afford that because I can get it for a great price at Costco. This last time, I was going strong for about 9 weeks – still with very little weight loss, still with no health advantages, but I was determined to really make it work this time – and then I found out I was pregnant (with #5, pleasedearlordhelpme). “Self,” I said, “keep eating all of those meat and eggs and salads and veggies. Let’s have a healthful pregnancy!” That lasted about 1 week before pregnancy hormones hit me full swing, and now all I want to eat is pretty much all the carbs in the world. Not the good carbs, either. Things that my brain says, “You have got to be kidding me!” my body is saying, “Bring it!! Now!” I can’t use nausea as an excuse, cuz I’m not feeling nauseated (at least not yet). But I can definitely feel the hormones, because this is pretty much eating insanity. It makes me very sad and very defeated, cuz I can never seem to hold it together, no matter what the circumstance. Hoping I’ll be able to at least do better during my 2nd trimester, when perhaps this aversion (or whatever it is) might taper off, at least I hope.

    Melinda P wrote on November 21st, 2013
  28. I just realized I’m still lurking…

    PaleoPete wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Me, too!

      Darlene, San Francisco, CA wrote on November 22nd, 2013
  29. In November 2011 I went primal with a breakfast of sardines. For 9 months it was great. I didn’t lose weight, but I felt great. On July 28, 2012, my f(&*^ng birthday, I had a roll. One damn white bread roll at a french restaurant. And it has been all downhill from there. By 2013 I was eating more sweets (that’s what the roll triggered), and I do find it hard to stop. I still eat well generally (though there was the two slices of think crust pizza yesterday) like today I had a poached salmon with salad for lunch and a naruto (no rice) sushi roll for dinner. So I lurk, but I know that I have experienced and will experience again, the delight of primal living! Soon, I swear! Plus, we missed 2013 Lake Tahoe Primal Con because of an illness (after having been signed up since November 2012!) So bummed. But we’re signed up for Oxnard 2014!

    Suzanne wrote on November 21st, 2013
  30. My problem is that I have an autoimmune disorder. It’s mostly gluten allergy, and that is controlled, but there are random flareups that HURT and leave me achy from head to toes and exhausted. I have been to many doctors, and the things that help are things they are very hesitant to prescribe.

    The problem is that sugar is a highly effective pain killer and serotonin stimulant. Every time I get a flareup, I reach for junk food because it literally works better to ease my pain and fatigue than Excedrin.

    So, every time I get on the Primal bandwagon, I loose weight and feel AWESOME, until I get a random immune flareup and it all falls apart. Sometimes I go a few months, but some other times flareups are less than a week apart.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Daphne wrote on November 21st, 2013
  31. Wow. This post resonated so much with me.
    I am a “lurker” (of at least a year) and I’ve never commented here before.
    Today, I just had to.
    Just as I finished some greasy ole disgusting takeaway (again) … boom.
    Thanks for the wake-up call, it was exactly the arse-kicking I needed.
    It’s commitment time.

    Em wrote on November 21st, 2013
  32. I’m a bit of a lurker. Everything I read makes sense to me, but I have a history of disordered eating and I find this community difficult because people get so zealous and perfectionistic about everything. It took me about 20 years to reach a point where I was not constantly obsessing about food and hating my body. I’m still not completely there yet. I probably eat almost 80/20 already, but all the restrictions – no beans! no oatmeal! no peanut butter! no beer! no rice! – along with the demonization of carbs (particularly fruit) and the advice to IF and count calories and do exercise that I personally abhor (lifting weights and high intensity intervals) are hugely triggering for me, sending me back into obsession with food and then feelings of worthlessness and failure. I’m not overwieght, I never get sick and I feel fine most of the time. I’ve decided to stop worrying about it, continue trying to listen to my body and intuit what is right for me. I’m going to keep doing yoga instead of lifting weights and keep trying to eat three healthy normal meals a day and keep enjoying my fruit and oatmeal.

    Lucia wrote on November 21st, 2013
    • Fellow lurker who has struggled with severe eating disorders in the past, specifically anorexia. There was a time in my life when eating anything, even if it was an extra Oreo, was a success and one step closer to staying alive.

      I’m really trying to get on this bandwagon without obsessing. It’s hard. I can see this from two perspectives. One, just eating at all is a success for me and I’m glad to be alive. Eating perfectly is not my goal. Eating to live and learning to follow my body’s natural satiation cues is my goal. So I do have beans, and I eat oatmeal. And I try to live with the abundance mentality mindset (eggs! lard! bacon!). I’m not going to let the perfect be the enemy of the good though, because for me, eating enough to stay alive has been a victory.

      Celeste wrote on November 23rd, 2013
  33. While I am technically a Lurker my silence doesn’t indicate passivity. I hesitate to participate to much out of a legitimate fear of failure / disappontment. So many things I have tried and they have failed to produce the desired results. So while I have fully embraced eating primally….for me it was really just dropping the grains as I’d already cleaned up my act quite a bit.

    I’m 3 weeks in and am feeling good but very bluntly I am tired of being fat and when I see results I might be more motivated to join in more.

    I’ve spent the past 3 yrs trying to get rid of the weight….and while I’ve went from almost 300# down to 235 my weight has stayed semi steady for the past 2 yrs..even while being involved in cycling and yoga and walking and weightlifting and now karate.

    I’m learning how I might have made some well intentioned mistakes …
    And am adjusting my routine….but for now I’m simply tired.

    Very very tired of seeing no changes in my weight and the disappointment that goes along with public failure.

    I feel so much better than I did 3 yrs ago but darn it I want to look better to!

    Lori wrote on November 21st, 2013
  34. wow I needed this post! I found MDA in June and have been “lurking” since then lol. I do good for a week then freak out and eat chocolate or potato chips, then I feel like crap, yet I continue to repeat this cycle. its almost like im afraid of total success or something….really strange….

    brittany wrote on November 21st, 2013
  35. So, I was turned onto PB over 2 years ago by a triathlete coach. He told me to not go over board or stop my tri training, but to slow down, teach my body to burn fat, and can the processed foods. I still feel like a lurker. Don’t think I can say I am 90%. Back then training buddies thought this coach was a kook. I try hard, I take salad and protein for lunch, I cook paleo, and I endurance train…… No change, hello! Then an IT band issue arose. I had to stop running. Now comes the physical therapy and the realization that I am weak. So I have been strengthening for
    6 weeks. Then I started push ups and squats at the beginning of Nov. I can see my shoulders and legs changing. I now know that strengthening is vital for me. I think as I progress, I will see more change which will keep myomentum

    liz wrote on November 21st, 2013
  36. Some people lurk … others get to work. 😛

    George wrote on November 21st, 2013
  37. Great post! I have been coming to this website since January and have started and fallen off the wagon many times. Each time I get back on track , it seems a little bit easier and over time some things have completely made their way off my diet such as bread. Thanks for the kick in the pants. Time to press the re-start button once again. I am starting NOW!

    CindyLuu wrote on November 21st, 2013
  38. Great article Mark! :)

    I see a lot of people who love to learn and do the research on something and it gives them that “junk food” fix for there mind without actually doing what they learned and applying themselves.

    – Trevor

    Trevor wrote on November 21st, 2013

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