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Primal Challenge Journal (mom500)

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  • Primal Challenge Journal (mom500)



    I'm starting the challenge and looking to lose 10 pounds overall. I'm hoping to lose at least half of that over the next 30 days.


    I have five children: two school age girls and two year old triplets. I lost most of my pregnancy weight just being too busy to remember to eat! When the babies were 7 months old I followed Jillian Michaels' Making the Cut and lost an additional 10 pounds or so and added muscle (she has a fun workout plan that includes sprints, intervals, and circuit training).


    Then, I started getting back into running. I love the stress relief of running long distances but one day I was googling something related to running and came across Mark's chronic cardio post. I was running 5-6 miles a day, but I decided to replace two of those days with tabata sprints. And I loved the results: I lost 5 pounds without trying, my regular running improved, and my energy really increased.


    I've been eating more and more primally and thought I'd jump into the challenge and see what happens when I give up grains (at least 80% of the time).


    Day 1 Meals:


    Breakfast

    scrambled eggs

    blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries with cream


    Lunch

    tuna steak with salad

    grapes


    I modified a recipe from Gwyneth Paltrow's GOOP newsletter: Slice the tuna steak in half horizontally and rub each side with 1 tbsp minced ginger. Set a large skillet over high heat. Add peanut oil (I used sesame). When itís hot, cook the tuna steaks for 20-30 seconds on each side or until just seared (this will give you a beautiful sear and very raw interior - I seared it on high heat and then reduced the heat to medium and cooked for about an additional minute on each side - this still has a pink middle, but it gets cooked a little more). I served this over a salad made of spinach, red chard, and arugula (the peppery arugula goes really well with the tuna) and drizzled sesame oil and soy sauce over it all. It was delicious!


    Snacks (planned)

    almonds, oranges


    Dinner (planned)

    chicken lettuce wraps

    roasted zucchini and squash (don't know how well this will go with the wraps, but breakfast and lunch were pretty light on veggies)


    Here's the recipe:


    Thai Satay Chicken

    1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts

    1/4 cup soy sauce

    2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

    2 cloves garlic, minced

    1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

    3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

    2 tablespoons water

    4 green onions with tops, cut into 1-inch pieces


    Cut chicken crosswise into 3/4-inch-wide strips; place in shallow glass dish. Combine soy sauce, lime juice, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes in small bowl. Add water to remaining mixture. Pour over chicken; toss to coat well. Cover; marinate in refrigerator at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours, stirring mixture occasionally.


    Soak 8 (10- to 12-inch) bamboo skewers 20 minutes in cold water to prevent them from burning; drain. Prepare grill for direct cooking.

    Drain chicken; reserve marinade. Weave 3 to 4 chicken strips accordion-style onto each skewer, alternating with green onion pieces. Brush chicken and onions with reserved marinade. Discard remaining marinade.


    Place skewers on grid. Grill skewers on uncovered grill over medium-hot coals 6 to 8 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink, turning halfway through grilling time. Serve with julienned carrots, red peppers, cilantro, and dipping sauce. Wrap in lettuce leaves (I'm using butter lettuce, but I've used romaine and iceberg in the past).


    Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce:

    1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

    2 tablespoons fish sauce

    1/4 cup hot water

    2 tablespoons sugar (I'm skipping this)

    1 lime, juiced

    1 teaspoon minced garlic

    1 teaspoon red chili paste


    In a blender, puree the rice wine vinegar, fish sauce, hot water, sugar, lime juice, garlic, and chili paste until combined.


    WOD

    20 minutes of running/sprints on treadmill (included 4 all-out one minute sprints)

    25 minutes of alternating walking & running 2 miles on the track

    15 minutes running/walking stairs


  • #2
    1



    I stuck with yesterday's eating plan, but never felt hungry enough for an orange. The lettuce wraps were really delicious. I didn't realize I had run out of chili paste, so I just made a sauce with rice wine vinegar, fish sauce, soy sauce, and lime. It was good but very vinegary, so I drizzled just a little plum sauce on the wraps (some sugar in there). I also took a 30 minute walk in the evening.


    I thought I'd add a few details since I plan to weigh in each Monday (more accountability):


    I'm 40, 5'6", and weigh 130. I was at 120 for almost a year and was really happy that weight. I gained 5 pounds when I had surgery and couldn't exercise for 6 weeks. I jumped right back into working out, but gained another 5 pounds. I maintained 120 by exercising and eating whole foods (I can't stand counting calories), and it didn't feel like I was doing anything differently except I was sprinting less and doing plyometrics less (because after lifting I would feel too tired for them and I'd often just walk). I tried to give blood and found out I was mildly anemic, so I've been eating more iron-rich foods and taking a multi-vitamin and getting my sprints in again.


    Day 2 Meals


    Breakfast

    scrambled eggs

    coconut flour pancakes with blueberries (served with butter; I was afraid they would need some sort of syrup, but the sweet hot tartness of the blueberries was more than enough)


    recipe here: http://www.cheeseslave.com/2008/10/1...lour-pancakes/ (I skipped the rapadura and folded in about 1/2 cup of fresh blueberries)


    Lunch

    chicken lettuce wraps

    sauteed zucchini


    Snack (planned)

    pistachios

    smoked salmon


    Dinner (planned)

    grilled steak, grilled asparagus and a big salad

    marinate the steak in garlic, pepper and 3+ tsp of salt - brush with olive oil and red wine vinegar before grilling.


    WOD

    Lower Body Weight Training

    inspired by http://bodyforlife.com/exercise/weighttraining.asp


    Quadriceps

    Barbell Squats

    Leg Presses

    Repetitions: x12, 10, x8, x6, x12, x12


    Hamstrings

    Dumbbell Lunges

    Lying Leg Curls

    Repetitions: x12, 10, x8, x6, x12, x12


    Calves

    Seated Calf Raises

    Standing Heel Raises

    Repetitions: x12, 10, x8, x6, x12, x12


    Abs

    Floor Crunches

    Oblique Floor Crunches

    Hanging Knee Raises

    Repetitions: x12, 10, x8, x6, x12, x12


    Plyometrics

    Jumping Squats x30

    Jumping Lunges x30

    Box Jumps x30


    Track

    alternated running and walking: 2 miles


    Plan to go for a walk tonight.

    Comment


    • #3
      1



      I decided to start a FitDay account and track my carb/fat/protein/calorie intake. I'm only going to do this after the end of each day (I tend to get obsessive if I track it on an ongoing basis).


      For Day 1, these were my results:

      Calories 1,439

      Fat 78.9 g (56%)

      Carbs 56.4 g (14%)

      Protein 125.9 g (37%)

      Alcohol (0%)


      For Day 2, these were my results:

      Calories 1,286

      Fat 80.3 g (55%)

      Carbs 54.1 g (16%)

      Protein 88.6 g (29%)

      Alcohol (0%)


      I was happy to see that my carb level is right where it should be. I could even add a little more fruit if I felt the need.


      My snacks went as planned, but my dinner ended up being a grilled hamburger patty (with pickles, mustard and little ketchup) and a salad.


      I've noticed that when I don't eat after 8 pm or so (which I have been experimenting with for a week - but it's been really easy these last two days because I don't feel hungry) I go to sleep easily and I sleep really well. I've struggled with insomnia for 15 years or so and would often have a bowl of cereal before bed so that I wouldn't wake up hungry in the middle of the night. I realize now that I was actually creating more problems than I was solving.


      Another great thing that I am noticing (after just two days) is that my hunger and carb cravings are almost totally gone. I feel totally satisfied and I don't have that terrible low-energy, almost nauseated feeling I've had on other low carb diets. I can already see that my problem with being mostly primal was that the little bit of oatmeal, toast, rice, and cereal that I was eating was adding to my carb cravings and making it easier to overdo things just to the point of not being able to lose those last few pounds.

      Comment


      • #4
        1



        I felt really great today. I wasn't hungry at all and I had all kinds of energy. I went to the gym with the idea that I'd do sprints and one round of turbulent training (see WOD below) and then relax in the steam room. I ended up doing three rounds of turbulent training and a mile around the track and running stairs because I felt so good. I can't remember the last time tabata sprints felt so good - lately I've just been forcing myself to finish them.


        Day 3 Meals


        Breakfast

        almond flour pancakes with blueberries

        2 fried eggs


        Lunch

        salad with pear, carrot, and sunflower seeds

        smoked salmon


        Snacks

        grapes

        pistachios

        almonds

        string cheese


        Dinner

        steak

        zucchini & red pepper

        1/2 corn on the cob (I know, it's a grain, but it eats like a vegetable - but, it has carbs like a grain!)


        Fit Day Results

        Calories 1,590

        Fat 102.8g (57%)

        Carbohydrate 63.7g (15%)

        Protein 110.4g (28%)


        WOD


        Gym

        - stretches/foam roller

        - tabata sprints 15 minutes

        - turbulent training (http://fitnessblackbook.com/body-weight-training/):

        1) 60 Jumping Jacks

        2) Spiderman Pushups 10-15

        3) Walking Lunges 10-15 for each leg

        4) Spiderman Climbs 20 total

        5) Squat Hold on Wall 45 seconds

        6) Plank Hold for 60 seconds

        7) Burpees

        8) Running High Knees in Place 25 per side

        rest one minute and then do it 2 more times

        - walked/ran 1 mile on track

        - ran stairs 4 min

        - foam roller

        - steam room 15 minutes


        home

        took babies on a walk and pulled them up and down a small hill in their wagon 4 x

        went for a bike ride

        went for a walk

        Comment


        • #5
          1



          I feel lighter today. It's pretty cool to actually notice it.


          Day 4 Meals


          Breakfast

          omelet with spinach, red pepper, cheese

          strawberries and blueberries with cream


          Lunch

          steak with salad

          1/2 pear, sunflower seeds

          small carrot


          Snacks

          1/2 apple with almond butter


          Dinner

          1/2 grilled chicken breast

          grilled hamburger patty

          slice of cheese

          pickles, lettuce, tomato

          grapes and grilled pineapple


          FitDay Results

          Calories 1,436

          Fat 73.8g (45%)

          Carbohydrate 71.7g (18%)

          Dietary Fiber 10.0g

          Protein 124.4g (36%)


          WOD

          went to the gym with my daughters today! I worked less hard than I would have if I'd have gone solo, but it was fun to be with them and probably good for me to play more than work

          20 minutes elliptical

          30 minutes upper body strength training

          Comment


          • #6
            1



            Today was my daughter's birthday. I decided that I would try to stay mostly primal, but that I'd indulge a little if I felt like it. This is about what is the healthiest lifestyle for me more than just the 30 days. Surprisingly, I didn't feel like having pastries in the morning (they looked like a stomachache on a plate).


            I checked nutritional info before we headed to the restaurant and I'm glad I did - because I was going to order Chicken Lettuce wraps, but checked nutritional info online before I went & found out they have 208 grams of carbs. Instead I ordered Wok Charred Beef (which I thought was 15 grams, but when I went to doublecheck the numbers afterwards I noticed that has 5 servings per dish - ridiculous! so that's 75 grams). It was delicious - actually better than anything else I've gotten there, but I felt better about it when I thought it was 15 grams. Instead of rice I had sauteed spinach (8 grams - but I didn't eat much of it).


            Day 5 Meals

            Breakfast

            scrambled eggs and ham


            Lunch

            2/3 PF Chang's Wok Charred Beef

            1/4 Spinach with Garlic

            little bit of chocolate cake


            Snack

            almonds and grapes


            Dinner

            leftover grilled steak


            WOD

            walking around the mall and playing with the kids


            FitDay Results

            Amazingly, I stayed under my 100 grams of carbs for the day (just barely)! But, if I had realized the serving size scam on P.F. Chang's nutritional info, it could've been quite a bit less. Oh well.


            Calories 1,370

            Fat 59.0g (38%)

            Carbohydrate 94.7g (27%)

            Dietary Fiber 1.6g

            Protein 118.4g (35%)

            Comment


            • #7
              1



              Today I felt really tired toward the end of the day. Not really hungry, but tired. I chalked it up to a busy day with the kids, but when I figured out my calorie total for the day, it was really low (800 before I had some chocolate - a planned weekend treat). I'm still not hungry and now it's a bit late, but tomorrow I will try to eat more so I don't feel so worn out.


              Day 6 Meals


              Breakfast

              2 fried eggs, white only (the yolk just wasn't appealing today)

              raspberries and blueberries with cream


              Lunch

              seared tuna steak with ginger on romaine (mixed greens were a better combination with the tuna)

              drizzled with soy sauce and sesame oil

              grapes


              Snack

              almonds and an orange


              Dinner

              grilled chicken breast

              cabbage, broccoli, squash, zucchini, carrots

              little teriyaki sauce


              Snack

              chocolate with almonds


              FitDay Results

              Calories 1,078

              Fat 57.2g (46%)

              Carbohydrate 76.1g (26%)

              Dietary Fiber 8.4g

              Protein 72.1g (27%)


              WOD

              1 hour hike

              Comment


              • #8
                1



                Day 7 Meals

                Breakfast

                scrambled eggs with red pepper, spinach, and steak

                grapes


                Lunch

                hamburger patty with lettuce, tomato, pickle, mustard, ketchup

                zucchini and red peppers


                Snack

                diced peaches, blueberries and strawberries with cream


                Dinner

                salmon cakes with lemon-caper butter (recipe: http://www.nourishingdays.com/?p=1230)

                roasted asparagus


                FitDay Results

                Calories 1,279

                Fat 83.0g (58%)

                Carbohydrate 58.3g (17%)

                Dietary Fiber 12.6g

                Protein 78.9g (26%)

                Comment


                • #9
                  1



                  WEIGH IN: 125.2 lbs


                  I'm amazed that I almost lost 5 pounds in a week - I was hoping to lose that much in a month! It's even more amazing that it wasn't hard at all.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    1



                    Day 8 Meals

                    Breakfast

                    boiled egg (I would've ate more, but the kiddos kept wanting more for themselves)

                    blueberries, strawberries and yogurt


                    Lunch

                    seared tuna steaks with ginger and mixed greens

                    1/2 carrot, grapes


                    Snacks

                    1/2 banana

                    apple with almond butter


                    Dinner

                    fish "taco" salad: cod, avocadoes, diced tomatoes, cilantro, picked red onions, and sour cream over shredded cabbage with a little fresh lime juice over all (this would be good with a little salsa verde too)


                    - I marinated some cod in olive oil, hot sauce and lime juice. Normally we'd grill the fish, but the fish was really falling apart, so I just sauteed it.

                    - To pickle the onions, I brought some rice vinegar to a boil and then poured it over sliced red onion and then let it marinate for a few hours. It adds a whole new dimension to the dish, I think.

                    - I put some fresh lime juice and lime zest in the sour cream.


                    This was so delicious - it was super fresh and just fantastic food! I didn't miss the corn tortilla at all.


                    I realized today that I haven't missed the carbs that I've been cutting out hardly at all. Normally I would have served the tuna steaks on ciabatta bread and I might have had a little pasta with the salmon cakes last night and hamburger buns the other night, but not eating them really hasn't affected the flavor (or my enjoyment of the meals) at all.


                    FitDay Results

                    Calories 1,168

                    Fat 58.5g (43%)

                    Carbohydrate 77g (24%)

                    Dietary Fiber 14.8g

                    Protein 91.4g (33%)


                    I thought my carbs were a little higher because of the yogurt - but that was only 7g. It was just the fruit adding up. I'm surprised at how low my calories are, but I'm not hungry at all.


                    WOD

                    I went to the gym with my daughter. It's nice to be able to go on the treadmill and get in a good workout while she walks.

                    - stretches

                    - walked 1/2 mile on track

                    - tabata sprints on an incline on the treadmill

                    - turbulent training (http://fitnessblackbook.com/body-weight-training/ ):

                    1) 60 Jumping Jacks

                    2) Spiderman Pushups 10-15

                    3) Walking Lunges 10-15 for each leg

                    4) Spiderman Climbs 20 total

                    5) Squat Hold on Wall 45 seconds

                    6) Plank Hold for 60 seconds

                    7) Burpees

                    8) Running High Knees in Place 25 per side


                    rested one minute and then did it again

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      1



                      Today for the first time I felt kind of bored with food - not hungry, but bored. It didn't hit me until after dinner, but I just felt like I wanted to eat something else. I think part of my problem is that I'm not eating enough calories (I'm trying to be accurate with FitDay, but I also wonder if something is off there) - but there's only so much meat, eggs, fruit, vegetables, and nuts I want to eat. I haven't completely cut out dairy - I've been thinking about experimenting with that, but after today I feel like I don't want to cut out another thing.


                      I feel good about eating truly whole foods, I have great energy, and until this last meal, I have actually been loving the food. Maybe dinner didn't have enough fat in it or maybe I should go have some yogurt or something. The challenge has been really interesting (and I have been seeing it as more of lifestyle shift), but I don't want to become obsessed with food.


                      Day 9 Meals

                      Breakfast

                      hamburger patty with fried egg


                      Lunch

                      fish "taco" salad (cod, cabbage, cilantro, tomato, avocado, little sour cream and lime juice), grapes


                      Snacks

                      apple with almond butter

                      almonds


                      Dinner

                      chicken cacciatore with steamed broccoli

                      (saute chicken in oil, add garlic, red peppers, and onion and saute until soft, then add canned chopped tomatoes and 1/4 cup white wine - simmer for 20-40 minutes - today I skipped the wine and it was still good).


                      FitDay Results

                      Calories 1,220

                      Fat 55.9g (40%)

                      Carbohydrate 55.7g (17%)

                      Dietary Fiber 13.2g

                      Protein 127.2g (43%)


                      WOD

                      Lower Body Strength Training


                      free weights

                      squats 4x10 reps

                      lunges 4x10 reps

                      dead lifts 4x10 reps

                      calf raises 4x10 reps


                      machines

                      hamstring curls 3x10 reps

                      leg raises 3x10reps

                      squat leg press 3x10 reps

                      calf press 3x10 reps


                      ab work

                      crunches on balance ball 3x20 reps

                      oblique crunches on balance ball 3x20 reps

                      hanging knee raises 3x20 reps


                      plyometrics

                      jumping lunges 3x10 reps

                      jumping squats 3x10 reps

                      jumping plies 3x10 reps

                      box jumps 3x10 reps

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        1



                        We went on vacation for a few days. I think it was good to get away from the computer and the FitDay analyzing of my meals and just make (mostly) good choices and not worry about data.


                        Day 10 Meals: on vacation

                        Breakfast

                        coconut flour "crepes" (http://lowoxalatepaleocooking.blogsp...ur-crepes.html - I skipped the honey, but if I make these again, I'll add a little salt)

                        with butter and blueberries


                        Lunch

                        fish "taco" salad


                        Snack

                        almonds, 1/2 banana


                        Dinner

                        carne asada

                        guacamole, salad, salsa

                        chocolate


                        WOD

                        tabata sprints

                        tabata squats (these are intense!)

                        tabata push ups

                        (I was going to do tabata burpees, but started feeling nauseated)

                        pull ups (on machine) 3x10 reps

                        bicep curls 3x10 reps

                        military press 3x10 reps

                        flys 3x10 reps

                        chest press 3x10 reps

                        threw medicine ball at wall 4x10 reps

                        threw medicine ball at floor 4x10 reps

                        threw medicine ball in air 4x10 reps

                        ran a mile

                        ran stairs for 5 minutes


                        later: swimming


                        Day 11 Meals: on vacation

                        Breakfast

                        eggs, bacon, a little yogurt


                        Lunch

                        subway salad (spinach, pepperoni, ham, veggies, red wine vinegar and oil)


                        Snack

                        almonds grapes


                        Dinner

                        big salad, pizza slice

                        chocolate


                        WOD

                        hiking, playing, swimming


                        Day 12 Meals: on vacation

                        Breakfast

                        eggs, almonds, 1/2 banana


                        Lunch

                        skipped


                        Dinner

                        Qdoba salad (romaine, carnitas, pico de gallo, salsa verde, veggies)

                        peaches, strawberries, and blueberries with cream


                        WOD

                        playing with kids

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          1



                          Day 13 Meals

                          Breakfast

                          eggs

                          blueberries, strawberries and cream


                          Lunch

                          grilled chicken salad


                          Snack

                          almonds, 1/2 apple


                          Dinner

                          hamburger patty, guacamole, bacon

                          salad


                          Day 14 Meals

                          Breakfast

                          blueberries, peach, cream


                          Lunch

                          salmon cakes and asparagus


                          Snack

                          almonds


                          Dinner

                          brisket and broccoli


                          Day 15 Meals

                          Breakfast

                          eggs and ham


                          Lunch

                          brisket and broccoli


                          Snack

                          cashews


                          Dinner

                          cheese omelet and bacon

                          peach, blueberries, cream


                          WOD

                          tabata sprints

                          ran a mile

                          ran stairs

                          wall squats 45 sec x 3 reps

                          pushups 10 x 3 reps

                          plank holds 60 sec x 3 reps

                          jumping squats 10 x 3 reps

                          running high knees 50 x 3 reps

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            1



                            WEIGH IN: 124 lbs


                            I was prepared to not have lost any weight, or maybe even to have gained weight since I lost so much last week (I figure some of it was water weight), so I was very happy to see this number!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              1



                              Day 16 Meals

                              Breakfast

                              smoked salmon, berries with cream


                              Lunch

                              salad with roast beef, blue cheese, carrots


                              Snack

                              almonds, grapes


                              Dinner

                              hamburger patty with lettuce, tomato, pickle, little bbq sauce

                              salad

                              blueberries, strawberries and cream


                              WOD

                              chest flys 10 x 3 reps

                              skull crushers 10 x 3 reps

                              bench press 10 x 3 reps

                              shoulder press 10 x 3 reps

                              hammer curl 10 x 3 reps

                              forearm press 10 x 3 reps

                              ran two miles


                              5 hours of walking (and tons of stair climbing) at the water park

                              Comment

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