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Jenny and Optimus Primal's Journal

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  • #31
    Hi there! Yes, I am enjoying the focus. And I do intend to be in good shape at the six week mark.


    • #32

      Week 1:
      Lifestyle Action Item 1: Introduce the Five Primal Blueprint Lifestyle Laws:

      Getting Adequate Sleep:
      Ha! I have a three-week old baby and a toddler. This one is impossible at the moment. Pert of the problem is that the baby keeps waking up at night, and there’s no preventing that for the next few weeks. The other challenge is that we basically have from 7:00 pm to maybe 10:00 pm of free non-toddler time to do chores, relax, play, hang out with our brother-in-law, and prepare for the next day (kid’s lunch, etc.

      Later, when both kids are sleeping through the night, we can sleep from 10:00 or 10:30 pm to 6:00 am and get eight hours sleep. For now, I can do the following:
      While I do like watching TV/movies in the evening, or watching stuff with my brother-in-law, I can ensure that, when I do, it’s worth my time. Otherwise, we can talk or read to settle down. I can reduce chore time at night by preparing several days of lunches at once. My wife and I can schedule things so that we each get half a night’s sleep without interruption (take shifts). I can also avoid digital stimulation (iPhone use) in the bedroom. We have made it a rule that bedrooms in our house will not have TVs.

      We do not do enough of this, since we’ve been tired from pregnancy and having a baby. Also, I do not like the cold. When it warms up I’ll be forcing everyone to take daily walks, and I do tend to take my toddler to the park and goof off in the yard a lot. Also, we do hang out with my brother-in-law and other friends, but these visits tend to be inside and not very physically active.

      For now, I try to play with my daughter, chasing her around the house, etc. Lately, I must admit, we’ve been much more lazy, since our sleep is messed up. That’s temporary though. My goal is to get enough energy so that my kids are begging me to stop chasing them around so that they can get some rest.

      Also, I like skating and hiking, and jumping around in the woods with Vibram shoes. So I’ll be making time for that as it gets warmer.

      We are not spending enough time outside right now because of our schedule and the cold. We do go for some walks. As it gets warmer, this will increase. I’m not worried here.

      Avoiding Stupid Mistakes:
      I don’t make stupid mistakes.
      Just kidding, but I trey not to. When I drive, I WATCH what’s around me. Use turn signals, check mirrors, even when not changing lanes (It’s good to know what’s going on around you). Having kids has made me more aware of surroundings in general, and I want to teach my kids to think about where they are, what they are doing, and what’s going on around them.

      Using My Brain:
      I have gotten a little lazy here, although I do regularly attend seminars to keep my counseling license up. I could spend a bit less time on TV and more on games or reading. To that end, I have a list of books I want to read. I could dig into that. My wife and I sometimes have a game night with friends as well. This can include card games, board games, or video games.

      That’s it for now. I’ll discuss exercise shortly!


      • #33
        Optimus Primal: Are you looking to gain some muscle/weight? at 5'5 125lbs I feel like taking your lunch money. I'm 5'7' 150lb for the record. Though in all fairness my "shredded" weight is probably somewhere in the mid 130s, my lowest weight whilst following the PB has been 143lbs after finishing whole30 just last month.
        I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.


        • #34
          Hey optimus: There is a PB coconut ice cream recipe & hot chocolate recipe in the PB cookbook. Maybe that will help? Grok on you two!
          Notebook of a Nutrition Nerd



          • #35
            Hi Jenny, Hi Optimus!

            Weird, I posted to your thread yesterday, but it seems to have disappeared...?

            Anyway, congrats to both of you for supporting each other on the journey! I think that one of the most hopeful parts of your story is your ability to steer your little ones clear of the carb tsunami. Since mine are a little older, I can guarantee you that almost the *only* food that gets offered to kids is gross, usually overly processed, carbs (crackers, pretzels, goldfish, cookies, fruit strips, etc etc). I'm having to sloooowly turn that ship around with my own kids, and think it is really great that yours will be set on the right path so early!
            50 yo single mom
            Primal since 12/1/2010. Now Whole30ing until I feel WHOLE again, my goals are no longer scale-related.

            Aila's Primal Journey

            "If I cling to circumstances, I could claim to be not responsible. Only she who says she did not choose is the loser in the end." Adrienne Rich


            • #36
              Hi there!
              IniQuity: I don't care too much how I look, but I'd like to have more strength, endurance and energy, so I'll probably end up gaining some weight.

              Me2: I do have the cook book. So, I'll check those out. Thanks!

              Aila: Thanks for the encouragement. Regarding the kids, we're not being too strict, but we are setting some limits on grains, etc. It amazes me (did before PB as well) how quickly kids are introduced to candy and total junk food., the stuff that EVERYONE agrees is unhealthy. Eventually, our kids will become aware of all sorts of junk food from their friends. We'll have to decide how much to limit/allow. Whether we allow canady and junk and non-primal foods, we'll certainly encourage primal alternatives. I was offered candy, donuts, junk food, chips, AND fruits and veggies. I liked all of it. i wonder how different my tastes would have been if I were not introduced as much of the junk...

              The attitude I'm taking now, for myself, is that the bad treats, if I keep them at all, can remain rare treats.


              • #37
                Jenny - that blue knife immediately caught my attention - I love colored kitchen stuff too!
                I have a jar of green olives in the fridge from Halloween (eyeballs for my kids) - I wonder if they are still good...would love to try them on top of tuna, as your picture looks so delicious!
                My Journal:


                • #38
                  PS - oooh, Zombies. If Optimus is on a zombie kick, and he hasn't already, you have to read Max Brooks - World War Z and Zombie Survival Guide. the best...


                  • #39
                    Read it! It's really really good! Have you read the Walking Dead comic? It's very different from the TV show that is based on it (also good). There's also Feed. Good books all.


                    • #40
                      PRIMAL LEAP POST 3

                      Week 1:
                      Diet Action Item 4: Go Primal!

                      NOTE: I have no weight loss goal, so I won’t bother with some of the exercises.

                      Primal Day 1 (Jan 6):
                      Water to drink
                      Fage full fat (with fruit stuff) yogurt cups x 7 (I’ll have to cut down...expensive)
                      Half cup of grape tomatoes
                      2 chicken wings (Bane’s recipe!)
                      1 cup pistachio nuts
                      A big ass salad (celery, carrots, green pepper, spring onion)
                      5 oz NY strip steak
                      a few DARK chocolate pomegranate pieces
                      about 10 to 15 Doritos (LOTS less than I used to in a sitting)

                      Calories: 2838 Carbs: 222 grams Fat:165 grams Protein: 131 grams

                      Primal Day 2 (Jan 7):
                      Water to drink
                      Fage full fat (with fruit stuff) yogurt cups x 5 (There, I cut down....ran out)
                      1.5 cups fresh blackberries
                      2 cups of fresh blueberries
                      2 chicken wings and a drum stick (Bane’s recipe!)
                      1 cup pistachio nuts
                      32 oz beef sirloin

                      Calories: 3381 Carbs: 187 grams Fat: 338 grams Protein: 341 grams

                      FIRST two days (Jan 1 & 2):
                      Calories: 5135 Carbs: 207 grams Fat: 212 grams Protein: 242 grams

                      LATEST two days (Jan 6 & 7):
                      Calories: 3109.5 Carbs: 204 grams Fat: 251 grams Protein: 241 grams

                      Regarding the Carb Curve: I’m still falling within the “insidious weight gain” range, but gaining no weight.

                      I’m sure I’ve improved some just by cutting out ice cream, soda, and pastries, etc. I allowed a few chips, but a lot less than I had. I’m eating a lot of red meat and yogurt. Typically I have a lot of veggies too, in salads.

                      It’s hard to rate my success because I started a while ago. Generally, I think I’m moving in the right direction, since I used to drink several soda’s daily and eat a lot of chocolate, ice cream, and breads. I also used to eat as much or more yogurt as I do now, but it was corn syrup infested Dannon. So that’s an improvement. I’m certainly getting a lot less sugar and corn syrup and a lot more fat and protein.

                      I could improve by adding more fruits and veggies, cutting back further on chips and soda, and maybe getting more variety in terms of meats and nuts.

                      What I like most about transitioning to primal eating is the increased energy, increased awareness of my body and needs, increased ability to get excited about preparing fresh food, being given permission to eat a lot of meat, and increased appreciation for both primal foods and non-primal allowances I have made. But honestly, I enjoy the meats, salads and yogurts more than the chips and sodas (usually).

                      The most difficult thing about the transition has been limiting ice cream, Sarsaparilla soda, and at first, cereals. At this point, I don’t even want cereals, but I’ll make occasional allowances for the other three.

                      Exercise Action Item 1: Introduce Law 3--Move Frequently at a Slow Pace:
                      Between work, taking care of kids, etc, I did not get to creating structured aerobic workouts. I do move frequently at a slow pace in every day life, however. I take walks between our home and my in-laws frequently. I tend to pace or walk around while talking on the phone, socially or for work. I also am constantly moving around the house, up and down stairs, doing anything from laundry to cooking, to reorganizing our home for guests to use the play room, to running around with my older child, to transporting my baby around. So, while I did not structure my exercise, I think I’m getting a good bit each day.

                      Exercise Action Item 2: Introduce Law 4--Lift Heavy Things:
                      Again, I did not get to this in a structured and measured way. However, I do have a Total Gym for pull up and other arm/back exercises, and I think I’ll start using that again. Also, I have spent a LOT of time lifting and carrying my daughter around, and she is pretty heavy. A couple of times I used her as a barbell and also spun her around and did various other lifting games using her. Also, i left the stroller in the trunk when we took our daughter to the doctor. I instead walked into the office weight-lifting with each arm, using my baby in her car carrier seat as a barbell. I think that counts.

                      Lifestyle Action 1: an additional note:
                      Avoid Stupid Mistakes: Fail.
                      A while ago, our bank changed owners and the online banking situation changed. I lost my password and found that resolving it was a hassle. I put it off, resulting in being unable to transfer money for our bills. It caused some strain, and has since been resolved. However, this was not very hyper-vigilant of me, and could have lead to additional problems.

                      Okay. On to week two!


                      • #41
                        PRIMAL LEAP POST 4

                        Week 2:
                        It is now Wednesday of week two and I only just got to looking at the workbook. Over the weekend, we had friends and their child over, and we were were very busy. Then Monday morning I learned that we were being given a surprise audit at work, and I spent the next two days working very long hours and commenting a long way to prepare for and get through the audit. Through all of this, I did not make much time for structured exercise or these activities in the book.

                        Over the weekend, I mostly ate primally. I did, however, try some Mead that my friend brought. It was okay, not something I need to do again and again. I only had half a glass, maybe. I did also have a few Doritos and an eclair. I enjoyed the eclair, which my friend wanted to get among other things (she appreciates fine desserts), but, again, I don’t really want another. The only pastry thing i really like is a donut. I have not had one in quite some time.

                        Sunday afternoon my father wanted to go to Chevy’s, specifically. While I did have some chips, I did NOT order any of my favorite frozen drinks. I instead had water. I did finish off with a small scoop of ice cream, and liked it. What was remarkable about this trip was the meal. I had a primal main course. I ordered the sixteen dollar meat variety set, and left the beans and rice out. BUT, none of the meats even came close to what I fix myself almost every day at home. My conclusions: 1) I only like Chevy’s for the drinks and chips, and therefore should not go often, if at all; and 2) I can add this to the growing list of restaurants that don’t serve anything I want or enjoy as much as what I get at home. In terms of going out to eat, the only places I really enjoy anymore (if we’re not expecting to have yummy sweet drinks) are Japanese, Korean, and other Asian food restaurants. Who knows if I’ll want those places if I decide to learn to make sushi and Korean BBQ.

                        During the audit I did not eat enough and allowed myself to go nonstop for nine hours or more each day. I also had two slices of pizza, which were okay, but, again, I can let go of.

                        Diet Action Item 1: Sweet Spot
                        I’m not trying to lose weight, so I should be going for the 100-150 carb range. I can work towards that by continuing to limit/cut out sodas, watch consumption of Fage yogurt cups, which have some sugar (18 carbs). I think I’ll start monitoring daily for a while on FitDay or, considering how this week has gone so far.

                        Snacks that I can enjoy include Fage yogurt, some milk, eggs, almonds and pistachio nuts, occasional dark chocolate, dried and fresh berries, homemade beef jerky, and a variety of veggies. I also have a few apples, bananas and oranges sitting around.

                        I’ve been dealing with energy lulls in the following ways: walk around the house, do chores that require movement, occasional naps, and eating snacks (nuts, veggies), BATHS, which force me to slow down (that may seem girly, but I like them!).

                        Sleep habits: Again, we have a baby. However, I have begun not staying up with the baby past when she needs it. Even if I feel like I cannot sleep, once the baby is fed/changed/soothed/calm, we return to bed.

                        Sweetened beverages that should be replaced by water/unsweetened tea (I reserve the right to have occasionally, but am now MUCH more aware of how much I have):
                        Soda, including orange soda, occasional sprite, sarsaparilla, pepsi (Already I like these less than I did, and rarely have any).
                        Sweet frozen drinks, like you find at places like Chevy’s
                        Italian sodas at Olive Garden (which I am still willing to have, but we hardly ever go there)

                        Diet Action Item 2: Primal Meal Celebration:
                        We kind of did this on a small scale, since we’re very tired after having the baby four weeks ago. It was not really conscious, but we fixed a meal of huge sirloin steaks, salads for those who wanted them, and tuna salad with olives and onions, for ourselves and our friends who visited. They know about the Pirmal Blueprint, and are on a different low carb diet themselves. So, while we did not really plan a large celebration, we had a very nice dinner and lunch with them.

                        Our families probably won’t go for completely primal meals. But we are making chicken and mashed potatoes for some-one’s birthday on Saturday. We will also have salads. I’m sure, however, that there will also be cake. I’ll take a very small piece out of politeness. In truth, I rarely like cake anyway. But this is demonstrrative of how conventional celebrations are the opposite of Primal. I’ll have to read some journals to see how Primal folks celebrate birthdays. I suspect some replace things like cake while others consider it part of the occasional twenty percent.

                        I will discuss exercise and lifestyle in the next post.


                        • #42
                          PRIMAL LEAP POST 5
                          Week 2:

                          Diet Action Item 3: Week 2 Food Log:
                          Primal Day 1 (Jan 12):
                          Water to drink
                          Fage full fat (with fruit stuff) yogurt cups x 6
                          Sirloin steak
                          1.5 cups pistachio nuts
                          Dinner at in-laws: Chicken breast without skin, baked potato, cooked carrots

                          Calories: 2548 Carbs: 182 grams Fat: 152 grams Protein: 127 grams

                          Primal Day 2 (Jan 13):
                          Water to drink
                          Fage full fat (with fruit stuff) yogurt cups x 3
                          A mango
                          1 cup chocolate milk (very mild on the chocolate)
                          Homemade beef stir fry that included: Beef, onions, carrots, celery, spring onions, green peppers, some soy sauce, and olive oil (I still need to learn more about Primal stir fry sauces)
                          6 oz chicken breast, no skin.
                          1 cup pistachio nuts
                          Salad, which included celery, carrot, and grape tomato
                          20 Doritos (which is a small serving for me, but DID affect my carb rating.

                          Calories: 2,438 Carbs: 220 grams Fat: 126 grams Protein: 121 grams

                          Jan 1 & 2:
                          Calories: 5,135 Carbs: 207 grams Fat: 212 grams Protein: 242 grams

                          Jan 6 & 7:
                          Calories: 3,109.5 Carbs: 204 grams Fat: 251 grams Protein: 241 grams
                          (was 184 before the chips)
                          Jan 12 & 13:
                          Calories: 2493 Carbs: 201 grams Fat: 139 grams Protein: 124 grams

                          I am definitely getting better at controlling my intake, and am eating more primally. Since I’m not trying to lose weight, I’m not as focused on counting carbs, etc., but am still doing so to see how easy it is to get too many or to limit them. I could further improve my diet by limiting the chips or eliminating them altogether. I don’t want to give them up just yet, but I’ll limit them more.

                          One thing I continue to like is the sense of control AND enjoyment eating primally can provide. There’s plenty I like to eat that is not primal, and some of it I’m not willing to give up altogether (pop corn, rice, chips, occasional sarsaparilla), BUT I pretty much like everything that is on the list of good foods, so it’s not that hard to eat primally most of the time.

                          I still really want McDonalds sometimes. But last time I got it I didn’t like it THAT much...

                          Lifestyle Action Item 1: Self-Limiting Beliefs, Behaviors, and Lifestyle Circumstances:
                          There is a section that deals with working to let go of self-defeating beliefs, etc. and reframing to become more proactive, realistic, responsible, and positive. I have spent years at this in the past, so I’ll only comment some here. I think that I still hold some sense of helplessness at work, where I have often found that I could not keep up. That was true, actually, but now I have more help. When at the office (I often work from home now), I tend to feel too busy to eat, take breaks, or exercise. That’s something I still need to work on. I suppose the belief that my work must come first is needing adjustment if I am to make time to exercise and break during the day. That’s mostly it at this point, though. My bad eating habits really come from two things: I like sweet stuff, and at work I hate to stop and take time for myself. At home I think I’m pretty well balanced and enjoying my life a great deal.

                          Lifestyle Action Item 2: Primal Leap Commitments:

                          There are several discussions here: Choose positive attitude, eliminate self-deprecating comments/beliefs. I think I’ve worked on those a long time over the years. I do like the discussion about making commitments. The basic message is that of Yoda: Do, or do not do. There is no try.

                          In keeping with that, I have made the following decision: The area I have most failed to commit so far is exercise. I am moving around constantly, but I have not done the structured exercises. I probably picked a bad time to start this, since we just had a baby and are hardly able to keep up taking care of her, lacking sleep, and keeping up with work as we have fallen behind.

                          Now that I am sleeping more and beginning to feel normal again, I think I can commit to starting the exercise program. Therefore, while I begin the third week of Primal Leap, I will start the exercise program at Week One. It will make this a six week program instead of four week. Additionally, if being a new parent interferes with any of the activities suggested, I will not sweat it. Sometime after my wife recovers, we’re going back through the process anyway.

                          Some goals:
                          Diet: Eat primally most of the time. Cut back just a little on Fage yogurt.
                          Exercise: Start the exercise week one program and continue from there. Have fun.
                          Lifestyle: Play more, limit TV a bit more in favor of visiting friends/lovedones, playing
                          Career: For now, just keep up at work.
                          Personal: I’ll give this one more thought...


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Optimus Primal View Post
                            Read it! It's really really good! Have you read the Walking Dead comic? It's very different from the TV show that is based on it (also good). There's also Feed. Good books all.
                            No! Didnt realise it was based on a Comic. Excited it is Frank Darabont - big fan of him converting Stephen King, wish the series showed down here.

                            Your progress is a good read. The Leap kit sounds like it might be helpful...hope Jenny and Zany are well..


                            • #44
                              Hi everybody, I've been MIA. Kinda silly -- usually I'm a rabid poster and then start this new journal and go missing! I've allowed various aspects of life to kick my butt lately.

                              However! It has been a successful few weeks in the primal sense regardless, I think. I'm still tracking my food as a way to plan meals and I've been sticking with primal foods, so that's good.

                              And since I still can't seriously work out, weight loss is the main goal for me this month -- that's been good too! I was 200 lbs. not long ago and now I'm 190, which is awesome. The last few days the scale has been occasionally dipping into the 180s.

                              So although I haven't been reading or following my Primal Leap guidebook this week, so far so good! Clearly I'll need to restart that on the exercise front anyway once I can do that.

                              And speaking of exercise, although I don't want to overdo it, I am going to the pool tonight. Not going to be aggressive at all, this will just be "move at a slow pace" laps. I love the pool, it's relaxing -- and I have my waterproofed iPod + water headphones to keep me entertained.

                              I usually kick off every swimming workout with the Jaws theme, but perhaps not today since I don't need the adrenalin.


                              Not my best food photography ever, but it's a good excuse to mention some of the simple cooking we've been doing. We wrapped chicken breast in foil with lots of oil... sage, thyme, garlic, pepper, salt... baked at 350. Really delicious result. The carrots got the same treatment and they were just perfect. Omnomnom!

                              Right now I tend to like chicken better than steak. Heresy, I know. But at least I'm eating meat, which is a challenge for me. I've been having a lot of those Applegate grassfed no-nitrate-added hot dogs too, with dijon/ketchup/mayo dipping sauce.

                              Now some replies...

                              Originally posted by iniQuity View Post
                              at 5'5 125lbs I feel like taking your lunch money.
                              Please don't steal his lunch money. I would be forced to Bring the Pain. I'm scrappy and I have a long history of biting people!

                              My impression is that Optimus is not looking to get totally ripped but wants a good amount of functional muscle. Definitely needs it too, to protect his back from lifting and playing with our toddler and baby! (I need it as well, same reason.)

                              Originally posted by Tawny View Post
                              Jenny - that blue knife immediately caught my attention - I love colored kitchen stuff too! I have a jar of green olives in the fridge from Halloween (eyeballs for my kids) - I wonder if they are still good...
                              The knife is by Kuhn Rikon. Works REALLY well and being nonstick makes it handy for sticky veggie chopping (and cleaning). Amazon sells 'em.

                              As for the olives, they're probably still good even if opened IMO. In my experience green olives last basically forever because the brine is so damn salty!

                              Originally posted by Optimus Primal View Post
                              increased ability to get excited about preparing fresh food, being given permission to eat a lot of meat, and increased appreciation for both primal foods and non-primal allowances I have made.
                              Seconded! I don't do as much food prep as you do but I've enjoyed learning various prep and cooking techniques and want to do more with you on that front.

                              You do tons of moving at a slow pace, all day, and all your household-related activities; I'm sure this is a big part of how you manage to stay so skinny!

                              Setting up the Total Gym again sounds good. But don't forget we have that pull-up bar too and the woody bands to help us get started with that -- that could be more of a full-body exercise since it is less body-stabilizing than the machine (make sense?). I definitely wanna try that once I get cleared. And fail miserably no doubt, but with enough bands on there it should be doable.
                              "Trust me, you will soon enter a magical land full of delicious steakflowers, with butterbacons fluttering around over the extremely rompable grass and hillsides."


                              • #45
                                P.S.: We've been trying to encourage our toddler to eat steak and she's finally chowing down on it -- and Optimus is sitting with her eating, so she informed me, "Daddy meat too!"

                                Last edited by Jenny; 01-17-2011, 04:13 PM.
                                "Trust me, you will soon enter a magical land full of delicious steakflowers, with butterbacons fluttering around over the extremely rompable grass and hillsides."