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Anecdotal Evidence (RedMenace's Journal)

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  • Anecdotal Evidence (RedMenace's Journal)

    Early morning of my fourth day primal.

    I mentioned in my introduction post that I'm trying this as a last ditch effort to feel good, be healthy, and generally have a better time of this whole life shindig.

    So far, I've noticed two very promising things:
    1) No more energy roller coaster. This also means no more mood swings. Everything has pretty much been very even.

    2) I am really enjoying the food. I have been between CW and ovo/lacto veg for the last 4 years and, frankly, not only was it starting to get boring, but I'd figured out how to eat complete unhealthy crap while still technically adhering to either diet schema perfectly. Go me! (and yay, sarcasm!)

    Today I did all the things one does to keep track of data at the beginning of a diet change. I weighed and measured myself.

    As of today I am:


    I also took some lovely (and by lovely, I mean embarrassing) "headless fatty" shots. I'll combine them with later headless fatty shots to compare the visual aspects of my body composition about this time in Sept.

    I can hardly believe what I've gotten myself into. I am so enthusiastic about the primal way of eating I jumped into this diet with guests coming into town for the next 3 weeks straight. On top of that, I'm due to start an epically carb-bingey time of the month-ish, like, any second now. (All the better to pad my headless fatty shots with extra bloat for a more dramatic difference, I guess.)

    Despite all this, I managed to say no to cupcakes and tortillas today, not to mention baklava and myriad noodles and a hamburger bun (despite the server's weird looks and requests that I repeat my order multiple times) yesterday. I've not experienced this level of willpower since I gave up smoking a year ago. I've never experienced this sort of willpower with food. I REALLY hope it holds.

    I've also noticed a few relatively disturbing things that are going to take some serious time and attention to work through on my part.

    First, I do not respond to hunger or thirst signals properly anymore.

    Thirst, for the most part, feels exactly like hunger. This is probably due to me not being so great about hydration while living at altitude for most of my life, and also being used to drinking a significant portion of my calories. I've acquired a very large water bottle and I hope to learn to be enthusiastic enough about water...or maybe disciplined enough about water, to drink it every time I feel a pang. Theoretically, I should start developing the ability to tell the two signals apart... eventually.

    To do that, though, I need to pay attention to the friggin' pangs! If CW taught me anything, it was that you should ignore your body's requests for sustenance at all costs and bully it into a feeding regimen based on the hands of your clock, or the whims of your company, or whatever. Because of this I find myself suddenly aware that I've been ignoring hunger for HOURS, getting moodier the whole time.

    Secondly, while I've read, appreciate, and understand the science behind low carb styles of eating, high fat styles of eating, and primal eating, I still look into the depths of my morning omelet, 2 eggs with spinach, broccoli, a touch of Parmesan, fried in butter and drizzled with walnut oil (delicious) and think "OMG! MDA is trying to give me a HEART ATTACK! ABORT MISSION! ABORT MISSION!"

    Indoctrination, kids. It runs deep. I dislike the feeling of it. It's like someone else, who may not do their homework well, owns part of my brain. (O hai, FDA! GTFO!)

    Finally I've noticed a general energy increase. Not much, because I decided to switch to this diet coming off a serious bout of anemia brought on by (crappily executed) vegetarianism, so my overall energy is super low anyway. But, I seem to be recovering faster than normal.

    Perhaps this is all enthusiasm-induced placebo effect. It's certainly a lot to be noticing three days into a new routine. Usually I'm just unhappy and starving at this point. We shall see.

    I suppose, aside from the poorly defined goals at the beginning of this post, I don't have any at this juncture. I'm just here to see what happens. If I'm still on board after a month, I'll start setting real, tangible goals. For now I'll just sit back and hope good things happen while I'm enjoying this lovely piece of bacon.

    -Red Out
    Last edited by RedMenace; 09-01-2011, 01:12 PM.
    Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

    My Primal Journal:

  • #2
    Hi Welcome! I love a journaler with a sense of humor. Good Luck.
    Primal since 9/24/2010
    "Our greatest foes, and whom we must chiefly combat, are within." Miguel de Cervantes

    Created by - Free Weight Loss Tools
    MFP username: MDAPebbles67


    • #3
      Preparing for Guests or Testing my Blood Sugar Maintenance Via Housework

      Breakfast: 2 strips bacon, 2 eggs, 1/4c Cauliflower, 1/4c Spinach, 1/4c Onion, all fried in Bacon grease.
      Yeah! Doin' my Southern (and primal?) ancestry proud!
      Lunch: Big Ass Salad - Mixed greens, Spinach, Carrot, Broccoli, 1/8c Almond slivers, 1 strip Bacon, all mixed up with a drizzle of Walnut oil and a splash of Balsalmic Vinegar.
      I'm so in love with walnut oil. It's the best thing in the to bacon....and strawberries....oh, you know what I mean!
      Dinner: 1 lg Pink Lady Apple
      because that's literally all I was hungry for

      Activity: From 2pm to aprx 11pm we (my boyfriend and I) Cleaned. This. House. We rearranged furniture (Literally. Not in the biblical sense.) We put down new area rugs. We vacuumed 5 times. We did nearly every dish we own. It was insanity.

      And even after all that work, not hungry. Didn't sugar crash once today either. This is getting a little crazy. (In that good way.)

      And now, to bed with me. Let's see if I exhausted myself enough for something more than 4 hours tonight!

      Hi Pebbles67! Thanks for the welcome! I'll try to keep the humour up. No guarantees during carb flu, though.
      Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

      My Primal Journal:


      • #4
        Two Sets of Guests Down, Two to Go

        I made it through the carb fest that was my father and stepmom's visit mostly unscathed. Aside from a couple meals where there were "Surprise! CARBS!" included I did very well.

        Eating out is, however, far more challenging than I thought it would be. Someone should go back in time and tell my whiny, vegetarian, teenage self that she has it easy. Carbs are in friggin' EVERYTHING, y'all. I seriously need to hone my "high maintenance" Meg Ryan-like ordering skills.

        I'm mildly disappointed that I made it to ketosis just long enough to get carb flu and then got thrown out of it nearly immediately by unintended carb intake, but these things happen. At least I now have the benefit of knowing, despite my previous assertions that I would "kick carb flu in the face", carb flu has a completely different idea of how things will go down. Mostly it thinks I'll curl up in a ball and feel like crap for a few days...

        It is very persuasive, this carb flu.

        This post has been brought to you by the word "carb" and the number 8.
        Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

        My Primal Journal:


        • #5
          I Bring to You, A Conversation

          Between my boyfriend and I, a few days ago:

          Him: "Did you have bacon for breakfast again this morning?"

          Me: "Damn right I had bacon this morning! It was delicious."

          He makes a face that is equal parts unimpressed and worried.

          Him: "You need to take care of yourself, hon. I just can't buy that you can lose weight eating bacon every morning."

          Me: "Okay, lets find out if I've lost any. I started at 238."

          I wander over to the scale and jump on

          Me: "I've lost 8 pounds."

          Him: "HOLY $@*^&!... That's just not right."

          Me: "Seems fine to me."

          I've been watching a lot of low-carb media. Talks by Taubes and Lustig as well as Fat Head. I also ordered Good Calories Bad Calories and The Primal Blueprint (of Course). I just received In Defense of Food, and hope to pick up The Omnivores Dilemma soon (which I realize are more food ethics books, but I'm into that sort of thing). Reviews to come.
          Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

          My Primal Journal:


          • #6
            Awesome! I just started about a week ago and my wife and I had a similar convo:

            Her: Don't get carried away with the red meat and bacon or you won't lose any weight!
            Me: Lost another two pounds since yesterday! nya! nya! nya!

            Love your writing style btw.



            • #7
              So it's been over a month since my last post. Why? Well the short version is family and school have dominated my time. The long version is that I have myriad character flaws, the least of which is an unwillingness to stick to a writing schedule. But that's a discussion for another forum (read: shrink's couch) on another day.

              So I've been hovering around the 10 lbs lost mark, but that body reshaping stuff (which I was, quite frankly, quite skeptical about) has been occurring. So that's kept me chin up about it all.

              I forewent the 30 day challenge this time around simply because learning this lifestyle while juggling visitors and school would have overwhelmed me and I know it. I have been trying to make this a lifestyle and routine though. So far I think I'm doing all right. . .

              Sprinting for the bus in the morning counts, right?
              Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

              My Primal Journal:


              • #8
                I've enjoyed reading your posts. Congrats on the weight loss!!

                And I definitely think sprinting for the bus counts for something......


                • #9
                  Told you I had commitment issues about writing schedules.

                  So, December will be my fourth month eating Primal to some degree or another. The transition and maintenance has been insanely effortless compared to various CW diets and vegetarianism. I am not hungry, I do not constantly think about calories or how long it is until I can eat again, and I don't feel guilty if I slip up a bit. This way of eating, despite needing a few tweaks here and there, has been like falling into bed in my childhood room. It seems like it's just where I'm supposed to be.

                  The craziest part? I don't even crave noodles, y'all. Like, no desire for them. Isn't that insanity? (Hint: Yes. Yes it is.) I even bought some crazy Kelp noodle things which are no-carb and full of sea plant goodness and they rotted away in my fridge. I've gone from pasta being the main staple of my diet and the thing I always wanted to eat, to not even giving it a second thought. I'd much rather eat a nice piece of meat and tons of kale.

                  As for the aforementioned tweaks, I still need to figure out my daily fat to protein ratio. I also need more veggies (because one always needs more veggies). I also need to get better about bringing food to school with me. Though, perhaps that wont be such a bad thing in the coming quarters. I've gotten a small group of we paleo and celiac people to start petitioning for gluten and carb-free options in the cafeteria. Right now we are limited to bacon (really crappy wafer thin stuff), eggs, and coffee. Which means we can eat at school only until 10am when they switch the menu over to holy carb fest...I mean, lunch.

                  Despite having things still to work out with eating, I'm down 20 lbs-ish. The last 10 went while I wasn't even paying attention. I got on the scale after not even thinking to for a couple of months and *poof*, "Hey! Where'd that 10 lbs go?" Always a nice surprise.

                  I promised myself after I lost about 20 lbs, and my knees were feeling better, that I'd sign up for a gym and start lifting and dancing. I went to my first belly-dancing class in 4 years (in a previous life, I danced for 5 years) last night, and I have an appointment with a personal trainer to show me proper form when lifting on Friday. Though I recognize that I've lost a lot of agility and ability, and that's frustrating, it feels good to be active in some capacity again.

                  Knowing that I'll start seeing major changes in my body composition soon doesn't seem to hurt either.

                  Oh man, do I have media things to talk to you guys about. As well as a serious weight, measurement, and headless fatty update to do. But, guess what? It's finals week. I'm neither ready to face those results or to dedicate the time needed to a post to, you know, make it all witty and stuff. Soon.

                  Until then, I leave you with this:
                  Chorizo. Stuffed. Dates.
                  Buy chorizo. Cook it. Chop it up. Pit dates. Stuff chorizo into dates. Warm chorizo dates in oven just until hot. Serve, consume, hoard, or fight over with friends.

                  This is the recipe for my new once-in-awhile snack. They are a big hit at parties. And by big hit I mean there may actually be fisticuffs over the last one. Enjoy the power you have to end those disputes by eating the last one yourself. Your right as the chef!
                  Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

                  My Primal Journal:


                  • #10
                    I feel empty. No, no, not in that wrist-to-forehead existential way, or in that profound post-partum sort of way, or, no, not even in that way, and I'll thank you to get your mind out of the gutter.

                    No, I mean I LITERALLY feel empty. When I poke at the areas that were solid-ish and filled with fat, they feel empty, like they're nothing but skin and about 1/8 inch void. Gut, butt, hips, thighs, and yes, sadly, even my boobs. All are feeling a little empty. It's strange feeling.

                    This, of course, prompted a measuring session because one would hope all this new marshmallowiness would indicate a significant loss of fat.


                    2in, 2in, 4in lost respectively. Crazy.

                    Couldn't come at a better time, either. I am discovering that outside of Ketosis, I do not lose weight. Also, when stressed about finals week, I gain weight. So, despite my weight going all over the place, I feel like I haven't been making any progress at all. That little piece of data helps. After measuring I immediately tried on a pair of pants that were tight over the summer. Fit like a dream now. Booyah!

                    Today, I start doing body-weight circuits 3x a week. I think that will probably help with feeling like progress is being made. It will also be interesting to see if the weight loss speeds or slows with the work outs. I tend to pack on muscle, especially in my legs, so there's a good chance I'll see less evidence on the scale and more in the measuring tape. We shall see.
                    Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

                    My Primal Journal:


                    • #11
                      Why am I rambling? I DON'T KNOW!

                      Once upon a time, I was a vegetarian. A bad one. In fact, I consistently referred to myself as "the world's sh*ttiest vegetarian", because I would eat meat on an occasion. You know, occasions like special dinners, or when socially obligated, or when trying new cuisines, or exciting new dishes, or....well....any time there happened to be meat in front of me.

                      Beyond that, though, I was a crap vegetarian because, well, I didn't really eat vegetables. I ate mac and cheese, and spaghetti, and ice cream....and really that might be about it. No wonder I'm fat, eh?

                      Now I eat primal, and I eat far more vegetables, far more frequently, than I did before. I feel better, I look better (though I have a ways to go yet) and I function better.

                      This, of course, does not preclude me from receiving the standard holiday office gifts filled with candies, cookies, and cakes.

                      I typically now say "thank you" and bring the stuff home for my still "crappiest vegetarian" boyfriend (he's an ethical vegetarian so no meat for him) to eat. As of late, though, I'm starting to feel guilty about it.

                      My boyfriend eats a diet that mostly consists of Mac and Cheese and Sriracha. I definitely eat more veg than he does on a more consistent basis. He also lacks a lot of good fats and even enough protein to support working out some times. All this taken into account, I sort of feel like I'm poisoning him when I bring food home from the office that I refuse to touch.

                      "O hai, honey! My boss gave me 3 tons of cookies, and I know they'll make me fat and kill me, so I wont touch 'em. Here you go! Enjoy this stuff that will make YOU fat and kill YOU!.... Love you!"

                      I believe I'm just going to have to suck it up and employ a "toss the poison" rule as much as the waste will pain me.

                      So, this, of course, got the ball rolling on thinking about what the BF eats normally, and how I really ought to (you know, because consistency is important) feel just as guilty buying him Amy's mac and cheese to eat 5 days out of the week as I do giving him all the various holiday treats that float past my desk.

                      And so, I do. I do feel guilty now. MISSION ACCOMPLIS....wait, no.

                      I did talk to him about it, and he did agree his diet is laughable, but he's disinterested in what I have to show him about it more than that. So, I guess my only recourse for the moment is ceasing to buy him the BS and helping him learn to cook for himself.

                      Darn you, Paleo and your sound science that makes me care!
                      Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

                      My Primal Journal:


                      • #12
                        Haha, welcome back. I remember reading your early posts a couple of months ago! I have a hard time not trying to bash my family over the head with the ease and awesomeness that is paleo/primal. My sister is vegan and it makes me sad!
                        Depression Lies


                        • #13
                          Well hello there! Thanks for coming back and reading again!
                          Yeah, I wish I could just send my boyfriend links and have him pop out paleo on the other end of the experience like I did, but c'est la vie. I'm giving him In Defense of Food as a primer and seeing how that goes.
                          Veganism is starting to make me sad too. I did it for six months and felt AWFUL. Can't imagine feeling like that for years.
                          Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

                          My Primal Journal:


                          • #14
                            Just found your journal - love your writing style! Another great book that might nudge him off of his "ethical' vegetarianism is "The Vegetarian Myth" by Lierre Keith. She writes in a kick-ass style that just blows away all the moral high ground of vegetarianism, not to mention all the other justifications for it. Lierre was a vegan for 20 years or so and a committed environmentalist, so she knows of what she speaks. It is a great companion to Michael Pollan's books. If you are getting into learning more about food ethics, politics, etc it is a must read. Enjoy!


                            • #15
                              Hi, Barb!
                              Thank you!
                              I should qualify this as "ethical vegetarianism" doesn't mean what it used to. Killing animals makes him sad. It's really a "death ethics" sort of deal. Not really a food ethics thing. It also squicks him out. Not in that overly political eco-terrorist sort of way, but in that he just REALLY doesn't enjoy eating meat anymore kind of way. Even before he was a vegetarian he would hem and haw over a perfectly cooked steak. He's weird. There's literally nothing more to it than that.

                              I have a hard time arguing with him about it because, honestly, that's a personal thing and there's nothing to say other than: "But the bacon is TASTY! TASTY PIGGY! TRY SOM....oh god, honey, don't make that face at the bacon....I'm sure it was HAPPY, you know, before it was butchered for my sustenance.....okay, fine, I'll stop waving the bacon around."

                              That said, I will certainly pick up the book, as I'm interested in the counter arguments to the food ethics and political arguments from the pro-vegetarianism camp. Thank you for the recommendation!
                              Prions are natures way of telling us that cannibalism is for losers.

                              My Primal Journal: