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Primal Journal: sibylsybil

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  • Primal Journal: sibylsybil

    about me/my reasons for going Primal:

    I'm a 20 year old college student, raised in Connecticut, going to school in NYC (also known as my favorite city on earth). My reasons for going Primal can be summarized thus: I've done everything that Conventional Wisdom told me is right, and healthy, and it seems clear that CW is wrong. I've eaten "healthy whole grains," avoided saturated fats, done buckets and buckets of cardio, and I've ended up physically and mentally exhausted, with a damaged body, stressed and unhappy. I've done everything that I "ought" to, and it's not working. So I've come to agree: CW is wrong. It's time for something different, and this is it.

    So, more detail on my past experiences with conventional "wisdom": In the summer before senior year of high school, I started to become more health conscious, and modified my diet--to match the Conventional Wisdom ideal. I lost 5 lbs, from 125 to 120 (at 5'6'') I ran cross country at the time, but suffered from chronic shinsplints. I had serious spikes and crashes in energy, often leaving me shaky and unable to focus. Freshman year of college, I lost 6 more pounds first semester, eating 1200 calories or less each day, mostly carbohydrates. I was drained, devoting what energy I had to school work. Second semester, I started to eat more, binging occasionally, though I began exercising (cardio), and reached 135 lbs by summer (gaining disproportionately to my calorie intake). I took up running more intensely last summer, running four to six miles each day, and lost three lbs, eating a carb-heavy, low-calorie diet. However, I suffered a stress fracture in my left femur. Through the winter of 2009 and spring 2010, I continued this way of eating, substituting 30-45 minutes of daily elliptical for the running; in spring I began running again and suffered shin splints (i suspect a stress fracture in my right tibia). I had read this blog occasionally, and was interested but not ready to commit. Now I am.

    I'm just starting out on the primal way of eating/way of life; I eliminated grains a little more than a week ago, and I've noticed fewer spikes/dips in energy already. I've cut back on cardio at the gym, added a lot of butter to my diet, and have started training with kettlebells, using "Body Sculpting with Kettlebells for Women: The Complete Exercise Plan" by Lorna Kleidman. I'm hoping that a journal will help me to track my progress and add to my motivation!

    workout: woke up at 5:30, walked to the gym, and got there by 6. Workout was 30 mins on an elliptical and a circuit on the nautilus-esque machines there. Got home by 7 (the walk from the gym is approx .5 miles) Once home, I did a workout from "Body Sculpting with Kettlebells for Women: The Complete Exercise Plan"; I could definitely feel the 'burn'.

    Breakfast: 4 slices uncured bacon, 1 hard-boiled egg, coffee with 1 tbsp cream
    lunch: leftover pork chop, 1 cup spinach with 1 tbsp olive oil, balsamic vinagrette, 1 oz crumbled goat cheese; dessert was 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp cream cheese, 2 tbsp almond butter melted together, then frozen together, was pretty good...had a cheesecake-ish texture.
    dinner: roasted chicken thigh with skin, 1/2 cup fresh raspberries (picked from the thriving raspberry patch in my back yard!)

    today's totals:
    Cals: 1386 Fat: 94 g; Carbs: 26 g; Fiber: 13 g; Protein: 54 g = (73% fat, 18% protein, 9% carb)

    I cooked up 8 chicken thighs with skin, marinated in ginger sesame mix (ginger, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, rice wine vinegar) and threw them in the freezer; I'll use them for lunches at work next week. I've been cooking for the next day all this weeks, and the lunches were good, but it's so inefficient.

    I'm keeping my carbs under 50 g; I'm 5'6'', 126lbs, 20 years old looking to get down to 116-120; according to online calculators involving waist/hip/neck/arm measures, I've got about 23% bodyfat, which I'd like to reduce.

    I haven't found it too difficult to cut out grains, but I still haven't cut out diet cola. I wonder what exactly it's doing to my body. Obviously, the sugar isn't an issue, but all that aspartame and artificial coloring/flavoring might be pickling my insides or something. obviously, it's completely non-primal... I'm relatively sure that there were no icy springs of diet coke burbling up for the cavefolk to partake in!
    Last edited by sibylsybil; 06-28-2010, 05:38 AM.
    Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)

  • #2
    After sleeping in (hah) until 6:00, I felt completely unmotivated to go running, so I read the New York Times for twenty minutes or so, until it occurred to me that I could borrow my mom's bike and go for a ride! So I left at 6:30, and did 7 miles at a pretty moderate pace. I really think that the early morning is the most beautiful time to be outdoors. The air was cool, I had plenty of energy, the roads were nearly empty, and it was a great ride! Also, I was pleased to feel some soreness in my shoulders and glutes/hamstrings--proof that my kettlebell workout yesterday was effective!

    Today's breakfast was a two-egg omlette-- omelette? can't EVER spell that right. call it an om-nom-nom-lette, 'cause it was filled with tomato basil cheddar and cooked in butter, and therefore DELICIOUS. yum. had a handful of raspberries, too.

    Lunch will be chicken burgers & beef burgers with the family, big bowl of green salad with olive oil & balsamic vinegar; I'll pull off the bun (that sounds dirty... also: I'll have my burger naked! hehehe. grow uuuup, what are you, six? yes, more or less. maturity is for losers. <end parenthetical internal dialogue/>) ANYhooo, the family is not yet aware of my no-grains switch... hopefully they'll just figure it out & not comment on it. I don't really feel like explaining the whole 'primal' idea to them; I might just explain it as not wanting to eat processed foods.

    Dinner was at an Italian restaurant, with the whole family; I had the "special chef's salad"-- a giant bowl of romaine topped with more than a cup of chopped provolone, ham, and salami, with a scoop of tuna salad in the middle of a provolone rosette. this salad was like, WOAH. Delicious. I finished probably 2/3 of it, making a valiant atttempt. Some of the meat and cheese will go into my eggs tomorrow; it might be lunch, too.

    Cals:1458 Fat: 81 g Carbs:16 g Fiber: 7 g Protein: 153 g [52% fat, 4.5% carb, 43.5% protein]
    Last edited by sibylsybil; 06-26-2010, 05:44 PM.
    Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


    • #3
      breakfast was two eggs, scrambled with the provolone/ham/salami from my salad last night (delicious); lunch was leftover chicken thigh and broccoli with the last of the chopped provolone & deli meat, and a generous amount of raspberries. Had a colby-jack cheese stick for an afternoon snack, and grilled chicken breast with mixed veggies for dinner. Going to do a kettlebell workout after I finish this post (hurrah!).

      The raspberry bush in my back yard must love this weather, because I collected about 3 cups worth of berries from it this well as another half cup or so that I ate while picking (I can't resist! they're so juicy, glistening in the sun, begging, Eat Me! Eat Me! Now!) although the birds seem to be enjoying the berry-bounty too. goshdurn birds, git off my propertee an' quit filchin my berries!! hah.
      oh, and I got 10 hours of sleep last night! go, me!

      nutrition totals:
      Cals: 1235 Fat: 66 g Carbs: 26 g Fiber: 9 g Protein: 129 g [49% fat, 42.5% protein, 8.5% carb ]
      Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


      • #4
        30mins elliptical at the gym, plus upper-body work on the weight machines-- shoulder presses, rows, tricep thingies.
        Breakfast was 4 slices uncured bacon (taasty, tasty bacon) plus an egg scrambled in the bacon grease;
        lunch was a Mediterranean-type chicken salad: 8 oz grilled chicken, tbsp olive oil, dijon mustard, chopped green onions, chopped green olives & CAPERS! (mm, capers)
        dinner: salmon salad= packet of pink salmon, tbsp olive oil, squirt of horseradish sauce, salt/pepper/garlic, choppec green onion & MORE CAPERS!! (once again, mmm, capers!!), plus cauliflower in butter. dessert= tbsp butter, tbsp cream cheese, tsp almond butter, cocoa powder, melted together then frozen for a cheesecaky texture.

        walked a mile to the gym and back, probably another 2 on my way to the bus stop/work. I may take the dog for a walk later, if it doesn't rain. And if it gets cooler. it is so HUMID. I'm surprised that the squirrels don't just fall out of their trees, prostrate from heat exhaustion! gaaah, humidity. I do not like, no, I do not. We evolved with pores to evaporate sweat, a brilliant little adaptation that the humidity thwarts. 100,000+ years of evolution, just to be turned into a simmering pool of sweat by the humidity. And I live in the Northeast. god help me if I ever go south.

        Cals: 1438; Fat: 105 g; Carbs: 19 g; Fiber: 8 g; Protein: 105 g [65.5%fat, 5.5% carb, 29% protein]

        urgh. need to eat more fat.
        Last edited by sibylsybil; 06-29-2010, 04:49 AM.
        Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


        • #5
          w/o; 30 mins elliptical
          b: 3 slices bacon, 2 eggs, monterey jack cheese stick.
          s: 3 tbsp almond butter, straight from the jar... whoops, got a little carried away there
          l: not hungry for lunch... probs because of all that almond butter!
          d: mixed nuts, grilled chicken breast, feta, pepperoni, a few cherries

          Cals: 1756; Fat: 126 g; Carbs: 29 g; Fiber: 11 g; Protein: 126 g [65% fat, 29% protein, 6% carbs]
          Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


          • #6
            Going to do my first IF today! It'll be 16-17hrs, assuming that I make it untill 12 or 1. Lunch will be a scramble of 2 chopped hardboiled eggs, 4 slices of bacon, 1 oz of chopped ColbyJack cheese, and 5 oz of roasted chicken from last night. Mmm. I figured today would be perfect for an IF, 'cause I went a little crazy with a spoon and a jar of almond butter and ate 1/3 of the jar (5.5 servings/ 1050 calories!) So my total cals for yesterday were 2,400 with 66% fat, 49 g carb, 28g fiber. So it was ok, not disasterous by any means. but still less than ideal. Anyway, I figured that all that food yesterday would make it easier to IF today (which I planned to do anyway)-- and I'm not hungry yet!
            Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


            • #7
              Way to go Sibylsybil! How I wish I had figured out this way of living at your age. How different would things have been then I can only speculate, but it's not to late to start.

              Grok on!
              Sometimes you need to be told the truth in order to be able to see it.

              My journal

              I see grain people...

              Exist in shadow, drifting away.


              • #8
                thanks, Sungrazer! I feel pretty happy about this way of eating, but I feel especially lucky when I think about the years of chronic cardio and guilt that I probably would be in for if I hadn't found out about the primal lifestyle. When I go to the gym, or overhear people's conversations about food and their bodies, they seem so miserable and guilty (especially the women), convinced that they just need more "self-discipline" to achieve the health and fitness that they want, and I think: that's how I would have felt for the rest of my life! I feel like the primal way of life is really liberating, in that way.
                Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                • #9
                  breakfast= one egg, five slices of bacon, coffee w/ tbsp heavy cream. Made some bacon and eggs for my older brother, too, since he's working 80-90hrs this week and missing 4th of July festivities--he usually eats honey nut cheerios or raisin bran for breakfast... (eat your protein, young man. you need to keep your strength up! these eggs will make you big and strong. Haha. )

                  lunch= green egg salad! looks like a science experiment, tasted great. [Photo below.] Based on a Martha Stewart recipe, but modified to omit the mayo, since the texture just skeeves me out. (5 hardboiled eggs; 1/2 avocado, chopped, 1/2 avocado, mashed; 1 tbsp olive oil; 2 tbsp lemon juice; 2 tsp dijon mustard; minced clove of garlic; pinch of cayenne, salt and pepper to taste= 2 servings) My dad's taking a half day of work, so I made us lunch. I'm going to make a big romaine salad to go along with it. I seem to be making a habit of feeding people today.
                  food 002..jpg

                  dinner= unknown, so far. I'm planning to, uh, gently suggest that we go out to dinner to a seafood place tonight (cheap prices, great food) in which case I'll get charbroiled salmon. Oh, I love salmon. Dammit, my mouth is watering just thinking about it. Must use powers of persuasion!

                  Well, I'd planned on going to the gym this morning, but I got less than six hours of sleep and woke up stiff and still a bit sore from my last workout. Normally, I'd go anyway, but I decided to listen to my body and chill out. I'm feeling pretty good now. I'll probably do an hour or two of work in the garden and the yard this afternoon, since my parents are having a rather large cook-out tomorrow. So I'll get my activity and my vitamin D from that.

                  Cals: 1404; Fat: 96 g; Carbs: 33 g; Fiber: 12 g; Protein: 100 g [9.5 % carbs, 28.5 % protein, 62% fat]
                  Last edited by sibylsybil; 07-02-2010, 04:20 PM.
                  Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                  • #10
                    Fantastic dessert (the cheesecake) - I will try this myself tonight !
                    Last edited by greek_girl; 07-02-2010, 09:17 AM.


                    • #11
                      well, today was a fail as far as primal eating. two eggs and bacon for breakfast, then to a cookout for lunch. I started off fine, with cheese/pepperoni, salad, and a beef patty. but aggggh, the dessert table. it was all downhill from there. I had probably three slices of raspberry pie, five brownies/cookies. Ate wayyyyyyyy too much. Probably 2500+ calories. I always have this impulse to try everything, though, and then it's coupled with this idea of "well, I f**ed up already, so I might as well throw it all out the window and eat everything." Which is dumb, because then I don't even enjoy whatever I'm eating. It's a reminder that that way of eating is insane. Also, I guess, it'll give me a chance to see how much of the weight I dropped since starting PB is water weight, which ought to be interesting.

                      OK, so: this is a note to myself in two months, or whatever, when I feel like eating a plate of brownies, wallowing in chocolate frosting, whatever: Stop! you will feel sick! Your poor stomach will be in pain, horrified that you would cram so much into it. You will collapsed uncomfortably on a lawn chair, stomach protesting, feeling sleepy and ill. Stop while you still can! <Message complete/>

                      I had a good time with the family, though, on the bright side.
                      Last edited by sibylsybil; 07-03-2010, 04:07 PM.
                      Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                      • #12
                        felt sluggish and head-achey all day. Pah.
                        went for a 7 mile bike ride, which, given my pace, probably qualifies as slow movement. Didn't lift any heavy things, though.
                        breakfast= 2 eggs with pepperoni & cheese
                        lunch= broccoli and leftover burger with soy sauce, heated up in butter. a few bites of the filling from yesterday's raspberry pie for dessert, even though it has quite a bit of sugar in it. I'll live.
                        dinner: cheddar cheese and pepperoni, handful of peanuts as an appetizer, bunless hot dog, some green salad.--- ate a lot of sodium today, in all that pepperoni. bah.

                        totals: Cals: 1338; Fat: 104 g; Carbs:21 g; Fiber: 6 g; Protein: 69 g [72.2% fat, 21.3% prot, 6.5 % carb]
                        Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                        • #13
                          did a kettlebell work out, still tired/headachy.

                          Cals: 1210; Fat: 91 g; Carbs: 13 g; Fiber: 3 g; Protein: 82 g
                          [68% fat, 27% prot, 5% carb]
                          Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                          • #14
                            belated from yesterday:

                            went for a 3.5 mile run yesterday at 6am. I somehow missed the announcement that it was supposed to be the hottest day of the year, but by the first mile, I was figuring it out. Tried to throw in a couple sprints, but the heat killed it a little. I was drained the rest of the day, probably due to the heat.

                            b: 1 egg, 4 slices bacon, 1.5 tbsp cream cheese
                            l: 2 baked chicken thighs, cheese stick
                            d: romaine salad, 7oz london broil with butter, 1.5cups sauteed mushrooms and zucchini-- yum!

                            Cals= 1371; Fat=78 g ;Carbs=17 g; Fiber=5 g; Protein=142 g [52.5% fat, 5% carbs, 42.5% prot]
                            Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)


                            • #15
                              I did 30 mins of elliptical this morning-- first time I've worked out since Tuesday. I've felt drained since tues; I think my run in the heat must have depleted my electrolyte levels, since I took two electrolyte tabs yesterday and felt much better today. Yay! I was going to do kettlebells this morning, but ran out of time. (pooh.) ehh.
                              Bfast was 7 slices of bacon-- using up the open package before going to the beach for the weekend.
                              lunch= tuna salad (mayo, cucumber, celery, grated Parmesan, squirt of mustard)
                              dinnr: I made chicken breasts stuffed with herbed goat cheese/artichoke hearts/lemon zest, for my gram, my auntie, and myself; it's a fancy-looking dish without that much effort-- and soooo delicious. Served w/ roasted cauliflower & sweet potatoes.

                              I spent most of the day relaxing. I read "Never Cry Wolf" by Farley Mowat this afternoon while reclining on the porch. Life is tough, haha. I think that my mother must have bought the book, but I'm glad I picked it up, because it was really fascinating. It's also pretty disturbing to think that the book was written in 1963, and nearly 50 years later, wolves and other animals are still being shot and killed from airplanes. I guess it's a tradition, starting with shooting buffalo from trains in the 1800s. But what arrogance. okay, rant over, I think.

                              Cals: 1368; Fat: 88 g; Carbs: 23 g; Fiber: 6 g; Protein 125 g [57% fat, 36 protein, 7% carb]
                              Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. (Thoreau)