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There MUST be a Six Pack Under There Somewhere: primaLeaf's Journal

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  • There MUST be a Six Pack Under There Somewhere: primaLeaf's Journal

    So I'm skeptical that anyone would want to delve too deeply into someone else's primal journal, but since I've been known to troll around other people's pages in an undoubtedly creepy fashion, I'll start with an introduction, for my fellow creeps.

    My name is Amanda, I'm 22, and I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I work part-time as a legal assistant and part-time as a dental assistant while I wait to start law school in the Fall. I'm starting this journal because most times that I've embarked on some sort of fitness revival journey or lifestyle change, I've been prone to some serious amnesia, regarding both successes and failures, and I think it will be beneficial to have a record of my process.

    Generally, I'm not in bad shape. I played softball in high school and college and walked around a lot. Thanks to a childhood fraught with exercise-induced asthma (why don't they just call it, "people-are-going-to-assume-you're-lazy-and-not-believe-anything-is-wrong-with-you-induced asthma"? too long?) I never particularly enjoyed cardio and I always especially hated running. Nonetheless, I have usually managed to stay in the upper recommended limits for ideal body weight. At just under 5'9, my highest weight has probably been about 175, and I've generally run closer to 165. Everyone in my immediate family is overweight. I assume that being active as a kid prevented any serious weight gain, but my diet has ranged between what I would designate as "McDonalds-SAD" and "CW-SAD," with a trend toward the latter in my college years.

    After college, in the Summer of 2010, my girlfriend of one and a half years and I moved in together. Probably you haven't noticed, but in my experience, by the age of fifty lesbians are either extremely overweight or unusually buff, of the tan, volleyball-tournament-attending variety. I don't really have any interest in volleyball, but I've always known that if it became a choice between the two, I would do everything I could to pursue the latter. With this moderately offensive generalization in mind, I started to become increasingly dissatisfied with the "happy relationship weight" that had mysteriously appeared, (daily ice cream habit = not so mysterious) so gf and I started a competition. First to lose 10 lbs. wins a prize of their choosing. (I lost, and I still haven't replaced her bumper, but I mean WHO selects bumper repair as a prize?) Just after Christmas I cut some of the sugary crap out of our diet and started cooking at home more. I was extremely well-versed in CW. I had aced my physical science class on diet and exercise in college, and I was ready to implement my expertise. We had soy milk, brown rice instead of white, lean meat, and the obligatory dinner vegetables.

    After the first week I dropped from 170.6 to 165. Piece of cake. (Piece of bland, overcooked, boneless, skinless, chicken breast actually) I was encouraged by my results, so I went down to Costco and bought us 24-hour-fitness memberships. I knew I would never be a cardio queen, but I wanted to conquer my aversion to running and I obviously needed to burn more calories than I consumed! I am pleased to report that for the first time in my life, I am able to run a mile without stopping to walk, lazy-man's asthma be damned! Other than that though, I'm not sure I accomplished much. Between January and April I went to the gym religiously on my lunch break to do 30-45 minutes of calorie-blasting cardio! The weight continued to come off but not like it had in the beginning. I went down to 164, stayed there for a couple of weeks, cut more calories, implemented weight training, went down to 162, ate more calories, went back to 164, etc. I was killing myself, Gf was eating cupcakes at work, and she beat me to 10 lbs. by a week. (Genetic freak, am I right?)

    I made it to 10 lbs. lost in mid-March and soldiered on, determined to look awesome by the wedding I was attending in April. I was down to 156 at the wedding, up to 157 the week after the wedding. It was unsustainable. I had never been a girl concerned with numbers but somehow I had become a calorie-counting daily weigher, and I wasn't even making consistent progress unless I was running a serious deficit. Summer was looming though, so I kept at it. I hit the internet in search of inspiration. Most of the sites I found were full of athletes in bikinis or celebrities wearing $500 dollar yoga pants. On May 1st, I googled "best fitness blogs," discovered the "Success Stories" section of MDA, and the rest, as they say, is Primal history, which I will write about in my next post!

  • #2
    I'm a (journal) creep! So sue me
    Newcomers: If you haven't read the book, at least read this thread ... and all the links!

    Jan. 1, 2011: 186.6 lbs PBSW Mar. 1, 2011: 175.8 lbs
    CW: 146.8 lbs
    GW 140 lbs
    A proud member of PETA: People Eating Tasty Animals


    • #3
      I may haunt your journal, just to return the favor.
      Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
      My Latest Journal


      • #4
        Definitely haunting this journal as well. You're a damn good writer.


        • #5
          Journal creeps put a big smile on my face!
          I'll admit, I was (am currently) uneasy about the way the forum records every page you visit and what you're up to, but I can appreciate how it encourages you to make friends!


          • #6
            The forum records every page you visit?!

            I'm in your neighborhood, kinda. Over in Marin. Finished law school. Fifteen or so years ago? Time flies.

            $500 yoga pants is a sin.

            Happy journaling!

            My latest 30 day PB assessment


            • #7
              After college, in the Summer of 2010, my girlfriend of one and a half years and I moved in together. Probably you haven't noticed, but in my experience, by the age of fifty lesbians are either extremely overweight or unusually buff, of the tan, volleyball-tournament-attending variety. I don't really have any interest in volleyball, but I've always known that if it became a choice between the two, I would do everything I could to pursue the latter.
              My girlfriend is definitely of the latter variety (minus the tan, she's not a fan of skin cancer), and if I don't do anything, I'll be of the former :P Count me in on the lurk-fest.


              • #8
                Yup, I'm stalking too...

                Great writing!


                • #9
                  @belinda - I don't start school until this fall so it will be at least a year and a half before I'm ready to sue you
                  @naiadknight - Thanks! Stalking is better for the self esteem when it's mutual, I always say.
                  @geostump and RitaRose - Thanks for the writing compliments! In some small way they justify having spent four years on a BA in History and nonetheless remembering scant historical facts.
                  @Metta - I haven't gotten the forum totally figured out yet, but it seems like it records whose profile you've visited and then in your profile it has a little status blurb about what you're doing at the moment.
                  @unsuperb - I believe in us, we will not be stereotypes! Or at least we will not be the less preferable stereotype!

                  So, on to the journaling. I'm tempted to just dive into the events of yesterday, but the historian in me can't deal with omitting the last three weeks so I'll take a crack at that first.

                  The Primal Transition:
                  As I mentioned in the last post, I stumbled onto MDA on May 1st. I say that I "went Primal" on May 2nd, but since I'm a clutterphobe and a wastegroceriesyouspentgoodmoneyonphobe, I had to finish the canister of oats on top of the fridge, so for the first few days I was restricting grains to breakfast only. Maybe this mitigated the effects of the transition, because I didn't have any of the deathly carb flu symptoms I've seen described on here. The only noticeable negative was that, for the first two days, my vision would go black every time I stood up. It probably would have been a problem had it persisted, but it was gone nearly as quickly as it had arrived.

                  Food Changes:
                  The dietary changes that go along with Primal eating are well known by everyone on here, so what I really mean to say is, "changes in food-related thought processes and approaches," but that would have been a horribly pretentious title.
                  So, between January and April I had a very regimented and repetitive eating schedule. I ate at 8am, 11am, 2pm, 430pm, 7pm, and usually I was still starving after all of that, so 9pm as well. By the time the oats were gone, that schedule was out the window. I definitely don't fall into the, "I'm never hungry" camp, but the way I perceive hunger has totally changed. I don't think about food all of the time anymore because, miracle of miracles, I DON'T HAVE TO. My stomach hardly ever rumbles. Sometimes I only realize that I haven't eaten in a while because I get a headache. I literally used to sit at my desk at work, watching the computer clock, waiting for it to roll over to 11am so that I could eat my trail mix bar, because of course cereal for breakfast left me RAVENOUS by then. I would open the package at 10:59am and wait. If I thought I could put it off until later, great! That meant I would be less hungry at the next feeding time. This should have been the huge tip off that my eating style was dysfunctional. I had heard people say that they ate whatever they wanted, but only when they were hungry, and managed to maintain their weight that way. I knew if I actually ate everything I wanted, all of the time (since i was hungry ALL OF THE TIME), I would go broke just buying groceries, and the only thing I would maintain about my weight would be its consistent increase. Frankly, I thought those folks were lying to be condescending (I still think a good portion of them are). It made perfectly logical sense to me that our genes and our modern ideal body image were at odds. Obviously food would have been scarce when humans evolved, so our genes' mission was to make us as fat as possible for the long Winter ahead. This was why it was essential to monitor food consumption to maintain my weight. Modern humans have no long Winters during which to shed stored fat. This explains why modern humans are fat and Grok was not - our genes don't understand our modern society! They are working against us!
                  Well, that is the sort of scientific explanation you get when you ask a History major about physical sciences, so... oops!
                  If I had gained nothing else from PB, it would be enough that I have so much more control over eating than I had before, when I was meticulously controlling every detail of every calorie consumed. In a society riddled with eating disorders I think that a healthy attitude about food is probably as important as healthy food itself.

                  Mood Swings:
                  I was always a mellow kid, but sometime around puberty I developed Intermittent Raging Bitch Syndrome. I hid my disease well. My outbursts were known only to my family and significant others. I could go from, "Hi, how was your day?" to "WTF is wrong with you? How hard is it to replace the toilet paper? I'm going to kill you!" in about thirty seconds. I didn't want to be a Raging Bitch. Maybe it was just because im a Cancer, and that is our nature. Sometimes I was just hungry. Sometimes I was just on my period. They were the kind of mood swings where you don't even want to be yelling but the fire in your throat burns so badly that you have to yell just to get it out.
                  The fire is gone. I don't mean that I never get grouchy or that I don't point out at every opportunity that Gf has failed to replace the toilet paper, but I am not at the mercy of my discontent anymore. If something pisses me off, I can see ahead to five minutes from now, when I am going to seriously regret whatever I just said, grit my teeth, and just not say it.

                  Physical Differences:
                  I am always happy to discuss poop, but we don't know each other that well yet, so I'll stick to more flattering topics for now.
                  a) Better sleep
                  Insomnia is greatly diminished, bedtime anxiety is improving, and I don't feel like a ton of bricks when I wake up on the morning, only a half-ton.
                  b) Less bloated
                  I think I was always aware of carb bloat on some level, but I was hungry so I would disregard the impending discomfort and pour another bowl of cereal. Now I know that even if I eat more bacon than I had originally intended, I'm not going to feel like an Oompa Loompa (I have no idea how that is supposed to be spelled.)
                  c) Flatter stomach
                  I'm down four pounds and it didn't all come from my ass this time!
                  d) Increased awareness of orthopaedic anomalies
                  I know this one looks weird. Basically, I'm more aware that I'm crooked. I grew about six inches between sixth and seventh grades and I think as a result I'm slightly knock-kneed, which is more pronounced on my right leg, and my left shoulder is higher than my right. Walking around in Vibrams really makes these noticeable. I also have terrible posture. And I definitely walk wrong. I'm happy for any advice anyone has to offer about any of this, and I will probably post a formal question about it at some point in the future.

                  With that, my computer is almost dead, and the guy next door has started BBQing, which means that this IF is most definitely over. Yesterday was a day of great success and failure which I don't want to forget, so I'll be back later to talk about it.

                  brb. STEAK.


                  • #10
                    I very much enjoyed reading this and look forward to future installments.


                    • #11


                      • #12
                        brb. STEAK.

                        It's what's for dinner! And any other meal I feel like having it at!!

                        Great blog! I agree, you write very well.
                        "If a man has common sense, he has all the sense there is."

                        My Journal -

                        Starting weight prePB - 258 lbs on 5/6/11

                        244.2 lbs on 6/3/11 (28 days in!)

                        240 lbs on 7/1/11 (59 days in!)

                        234.2 on 7/15/11 (73 days in!)

                        228.2 on 8/12/11 (101 days in!)

                        224 on 8/28/11 (117 days in!)

                        220.6 on 9/14/11 (134 days in!)

                        Goal weight PB - 205 lbs


                        • #13
                          Lurking and enjoying the prose =)
                          "You can always do more than you think you can !" Sensei Scash


                          • #14
                            Welcome! If you are funny, everyone will read your journal. Mark says everyone does in fact does have a six pack, those are crucial muscles, but most have them hidden under a layer of belly (aka carb) fat.
                            This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

                            Any given day you are surrounded by 10,000 idiots.
                            Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Digby View Post
                              Welcome! If you are funny, everyone will read your journal.
                              Lol. IF. Well, good, I guess IF I get enough responses I'll know I have a career to fall back on when law school has destroyed my soul

                              Well, I didn't have any steak, but I had a ton of eggs and vegetables, so I imagine I should survive long enough to write this post about the events of yesterday.

                              I went to a volunteer event with Gf. It was a sort of literacy-themed activities fair for foster children. The organizers, of course, provided us with food.

                              PrimalChallenge # 1: Don't eat the Svenhard's. In any flavor. You will die.
                              Result: Pass. My mom used to feed us these on our way out the door for breakfast when we were kids. They are delicious, but breakfast quiche kept me strong.

                              PrimalChallenge # 2: Don't eat the hot dog bun. Or the ketchup. Probably not the mustard or relish either. You will die.
                              Result: Pass. I ate the hot dogs plain. Not the bullshit vegetarian ones either. They were in the shape of hexagonal cylinders. (I don't know if that's a legitimate shape. Sorry, I sucked at Geometry.) Both times that I put a plain hot dog on my plate, I was asked by the person behind the table if I wanted a bun. They must have thought I was visually impaired, because the buns were two inches from the hot dogs and if I had been looking for them I obviously would have seen them. That's not really fair though, because I think I would have done the same thing in their position. Maybe. So nevermind. Kind of.

                              PrimalChallenge # 3: Get some sun!
                              Result: Pass, but with a reprimand for being an overachiever. Around age 8, I came to the sad realization that I am white. Except when I spend too long in the sun, at which point I become red, like I did yesterday. Except on the bridge of my nose, where my sunglasses sat, where I am still just white.

                              PrimalChallenge # 4: Don't drink the beer. Especially because all that's left after your first Blue Moon is Keystone and Coors Light, and you finished college, remember?
                              Result: FAIL. I did finish college, but I mean, I'm not above a cleverly engineered game that involves bouncing quarters into cups. I'm just not. And in all honesty, I knew the post-volunteering party was coming and I'm neither a teetotaller nor a centenarian, so I knew I was never going to resist. (PrimalCaveat - I was jazzed enough from all the beer that I sprinted up some steps through a rose garden, so you know, plus two coconut-flour brownie points for me)

                              PrimalChallenge # 5: Don't eat the chips. Don't eat the cookies. I know you haven't really eaten anything since those plain hot dogs and that banana, but seriously, you will die.
                              Result: Pass! This is the one I'm most proud of. They had Sunchips. And GIRL SCOUT COOKIES. And I was HUNGRY. At parties gone past I could easily have justified going for the whole grain Sunchips. Yesterday, I resisted. I held out until the steak skewers with onion and peppers were ready. I ate two. They were delicious. Not as rare as I would have preferred, but my affinity for bleeding steaks seems to categorize me as a minority.

                              PrimalChallenge # 6: Do not get the McDonald's McFlurry. Even if it is the snack size. Even if it has Reese's, the best candy ever created by man. You will... Fuck it. Eat the McFlurry. You won't die. You know it's gonna be delicious. It's 11pm and you will sleep weird and have whacked out dreams, but now that you've gone Primal, you don't have to have an existential crisis every time you eat something that isn't a part of the plan.
                              Result: I mean, pass. I did eat the McFlurry. It was delicious. I did sleep weird. I didn't dwell on it, and I don't regret it. I also didn't gain 12 pounds as a result of eating it.

                              So, yes. A day of successes and failures.

                              Remember PrimalFriends: If you're going to have a beer, It probably shouldn't be Keystone or Coors Light.