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Releasing my inner siren - ErinF

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  • Releasing my inner siren - ErinF

    My journey up to this point.

    Hot dogs were a staple in our house growing up. We often ate things out of a box or a bag and when my mom could afford it, we ate fast food. My mom worked several jobs so I don't blame her for going the easy route with food, but the easy route is never the healthy route. Just before starting high school I started developing allergies to fruits and vegetables. First it was bananas, then tomatoes and bell peppers, next came melons and by the time I was 16 I had so many fruits and vegetables on the CANNOT EAT list that I became very dependant on grains. Later this allergy would be diagnosed as Oral Allergy Syndrome. I became very lethargic in high school and wasn't able to make it through most classes without falling asleep. My mood changed from happy and alive to tired, sluggish, and grumpy. I had a major inability to focus on anything and started getting migraines almost weekly. Because the changes were so gradual I never realized something was wrong and just decided I was never going to be one of those people that had a lot of energy. I was steadily gaining weight despite my efforts to stay thin, I decided the best way to deal with this was to stop eating altogether. I spent about 6 months eating almost nothing and the end result of that was a weak, tired, shakey and sickly thin girl. I weighed 100 pounds and still felt like I was hugely fat and gross.

    Fast forward to 2003, I married my best friend and immediately began birth control. I rapidly gained weight and being a petite 5'3, every pound I gained showed up in an exaggerated way. I looked bloated, unhealthy and unhappy. My weight went from 115 to 150, and despite hours spent at the gym and some crazy fad dieting I couldn't lose weight. My hormones were all over the place and by this time I had been tested for thyroid problems, diabetes and arthritis. I was only 19, diabetes and arthritis at 19?!?! My blood work showed I was healthy and within normal ranges, but I certainly didn't feel normal. I knew I wasn't healthy and I hated it. It was this point that I started to give up. I wasn't able to eat healthy because of my Oral Allergy Syndrome and no amount of exercise was lowering that number on the scale.

    In 2007 my husband and I wanted to start our family so I went off the birth control. We spent months trying to conceive with no success at all. After talking to a fertility specialist it was decided I should go on a fertility med and just a few months after that I was pregnant. Pregnancy was crazy, I was so tired that most days I didn't get out of bed at all. I developed severe back and shoulder pain at about 4 months and wasn't able to exercise or do much more than sit up in bed. This being my first pregnancy I really had no idea what was going on. My hormones were crazy and I de-stressed with food. A LOT of food. I went from 148 pounds to 199 pounds on delivery day. I started exercising almost immediately and was able to lose 40 pounds. After my son was born I had a full blood panel drawn and was diagnosed with PCOS and insulin resistance and was put on a high dose of metformin. 5 months after my first son was born I found myself pregnant again. I wanted my kids to be close in age, but wasn't planning on having them THIS close. I spent the second pregnancy much like the first, in bed and in a lot of pain. My weight climbed back up and at delivery I was 180 lbs.

    I managed to get my weight down to 167 pounds, but then I hit a wall. I did everything to get my weight down, but no matter what I did the # on the scale would only lower temporarily. I started running and doing aerobis everyday and I hated every minute of it. I wanted to spend time doing things I enjoyed! I started falling into a depression and decided to go to the doctor for help. Another blood panel was drawn and the results scared me. My cholesterol and tryglicerides were high and I need to go on yet another medication. That was it! I've had it with medications and feeling tired all the time. I was sick of being depressed over my weight. This time I was going to find out what was wrong with me. I knew I was doing something wrong with my diet so I spent the next week glued to the internet trying to find anything that could help me. I'm still not sure how I happened on a gluten free forum, but thats where this journey started. I immediately went off gluten and started getting my energy back, but I still felt a little sluggish and I knew there was something more I could do to feel even better. I came across a link to this site in someone's forum signature and the rest is history. I started dropping weight immediately and my body fat percent, which has been hovering at 36%, has started to lower also.

    I'm finally excited about a "diet" and can't believe how amazing I feel! I have a long way to go before I hit my goal, but I know with this diet and proper exercise I can get there!
    Last edited by ErinF; 11-01-2011, 01:23 PM.

  • #2
    Today is my 1 week mark, I started the primal lifestyle and 163 pounds and today I weighed in at 159. I can't believe I'm in the 150's!! I'm not at 100% primal yet, because of my carb flu from going gluten free; I've decided to go slow with the remaining carbs and increase my protein intake. I'm still feeling hungry most of the day, but from the advice I've gotten from members of this forum, I've decided it's from not eating enough fat. It's hard to retrain my brain to go from low-fat to eat as much fat as I want.

    So far I'm trying to stay under 1600 calories. I'm trying to eat less than 100 grams of carbs, and despite what I originally thought, it's been really easy! I'm experiencing carb flu, but am finally feeling some relief from that. I have been dealing with some cramping, but it actually feels like the pain is coming from my kidneys so I'll need to research that. All in all my mood has improved and my energy levels feel more stable.

    My next weight loss goal is to reach 149, my ending weight loss goal is to be within a healthy weight range for my age/height, which should be around 120.


    • #3
      I'm finding it easier to stay on the Primal type diet as the days go by. It's awesome to finally be able to eat a normal size meal and feel completely satisfied and full. I'm finding it hard to eat the amount of protein suggested and hopefully I can figure out a way to fix that. Right now I'm adding in a whey protein shake every day, but there has to be an easier way to get it in. I don't really like to eat a lot of meat so getting in all my protein through meat is challenging. I either need to find a type of meat that I'm good with eating every day or continue with my protein shakes.

      I'm finally feeling like my carb flu is gone. I still have slight foggy brain, but overall I feel healthy and have enough energy to make it through the day without needing a nap. I'm still having a really hard time eating all this fat, I can't help but think my body is just storing it all up and I'm going to start gaining insane amounts of weight. So far this hasn't happened and the number on the scale has steadily gone down.

      One of the harder things for me to give up is my alcohol. I don't drink a lot, but I LOVE my Coke and Brandy. I usually have one every weekend along with a nightly glass of wine during the week. My sister was visiting from out of town over the weekend and I drank way more than I should have and it's showing. I'm completely bloated and feel so gross. I've decided that I'm going to completely shut off my alcohol intake for a while and see if the weight drops off any faster. I know I've read an article about alcohol and weight gain.


      • #4
        I think I must be going crazy.

        I woke up with boundless energy and even after cleaning the house, dancing with the kids, and running around like a mad woman; I still have tons of energy. This is awesome!


        • #5
          Keep up the great work - Welcome to the Tribe!
          There are two wolves fighting within a man's heart, one is Love, the other is Hate. The one that wins is the one you feed.

          My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we'll change the world. - Jack Layton

          The Primal Adventures of Griffin - Huzzah!


          • #6

            I bought the 21 day transformation book and am reading it now. I'll be starting that on Monday like Mark suggests. I did my fitness evaluation and have started my workouts twice a week. I actually took some time to play outside with my kids this morning and I loved it. I can't believe how much I miss running around outside in the sun. It was fun to chase the dog while making my toddler laugh. And the best part is I wasn't totally wiped out afterward like I used to be.


            • #7
              Today is day 1 of the 21 day transformation. I've been doing the primal thing for a few weeks so it was an easy decision to start the challenge. The best part is I finally got my husband on board to do this 21 day thing with me!!! I know he's going to love it! Here's my journal entry for the day:

              Kitchen/Pantry Purge
              -hardest part: it was hard to separate the food that I eat and the food my toddler/baby eat. I'm not taking them Primal until they're older and because of that I had to keep some of their food. I had a little bit of a sad moment when I realized my dark chocolate squares had /gasp vegetable oil in them and a slight case of the grumpies when I threw them in the trash.
              -best part: the space in my pantry is amazing. I can actually see what I have in stock now! Before it was like a high fructose and grain filled jungle.

              Re-Stock Preparation:
              -primal shopping resources: Trader Joe's, BJ's, Costco

              Increase daily movement"
              1. walk dog nightly
              2. play hide/seek with the kids during the day
              3. walk to the mailbox each afternoon with the kids/dog
              4. dancing lessons (I seriously have no skills at all in this area).
              5. doing a quick 10-15 min aerobic routine after I put the kids down for a nap

              Today's movement endeavors
              1. I played chase the dog in the backyard wit my son
              2. I'm going to chase my son around the house before his nap to get him tired
              3. We'll be going on a nightly walk tonight with the dog for 30-45 minutes


              • #8
                Welcome Erin! I'm happy that primal is going so well for you! Grok on!
                Ancestral Health Info

                I design websites and blogs for a living. If you would like a blog or website designed by someone who understands Primal, see my web page.

                Primal Blueprint Explorer My blog for people who are not into the Grok thing. Since starting the blog, I have moved close to being Archevore instead of Primal. But Mark's Daily Apple is still the best source of information about living an ancestral lifestyle.


                • #9
                  I haven't been feeling well lately, maybe I'm still dealing with the carb flu? Either way, eating eggs in the morning upsets my stomach for at least an hour, sometimes more. I have noticed that waiting a few hours before eating in the am doesn't give me a stomach ache. Maybe I should keep doing that?

                  I'm still on schedule with my 21 days, I decided to not post my journal entries on here, I'd rather write them down than type them out.

                  Per several forum members suggestions I've stopped using my scale so I have no idea if I've lost any weight lately. I've been working out more and I can see that the fat on my arms is slowly being replaced with muscle. I'm also starting to not fit into most of my clothes which is awesome, but at the same time it's a little frusterating since I don't really have the money to replace them right now. LOL Good thing I have a sewing maching, if only I knew how to use it!


                  • #10
                    I've been following the dietary guidelines within the Primal Blueprint for a few weeks now and I LOVE IT!! I'm still dropping weight steadily and my body is looking a lot thinner. I've been obsessed with the # on the scale going down and have been weighing myself every single morning. I'm thinking my slight obsession with the scale is probably not a good thing and instead of focusing on the amoung of weight I'm losing I need to redirect my attention to the amount of body fat I have.

                    I recently read an article about a girl that lifts weights. I'm not talking about lifting small weights for that "lean" look, I'm talking about lifting uber heavy weights like the ones you see those massive muscles at the gym doing. I've always thought lifting weights like that would make you a giant ball of muscles, with everything bulging and just gross, but this chick looked amazing. She had the body I want and have wanted since I knew women could attain muscles. I am going to look like this girl, just give me two years and my tummy tuck and I'll get there!

                    I do a weekly weigh in and this is where I'm at so far; my current weight is 155. I'm down 5 pounds from when I started the full on Primal diet and down 8 pounds from when I started eating gluten free. My body fat % as of yesterday is 36% yikes!!! That actually makes me want to scream and cry. My new goal is to get that # down as fast as possible and as low as possible. I'll have a small party when it drops below 20% into the healthy range. That may not be until I get my tummy tuck, but I'm hoping it's before then.


                    • #11
                      I'm starting something new for myself. As of today I'll be doing fitness challenges to help get my body fat % down. I don't know if this is a very effective way to do it, but it cant hurt! My challenge for today is: do 10+ push-ups (modified) every hour until bedtime. Go!


                      • #12
                        I'm not really sure what I've been doing wrong. I started dropping weight like crazy when I first started eating Primally. It's been a little over a month and I haven't been losing any weight at all, and what's worse is my body fat % hasn't changed even a little bit. I'm LHT 3x a week and eating as primally as possible. I would think by now my body fat % would have lowered some, even by 1/2%, but no dice. So I guess I need to re-evaluate what I'm doing and what I'm not doing.

                        So far this is what a typical day/week is like for me. I wake up between 6-7am and feed the kids. I usually eat breakfast around 8-9 am, breakfast for me consists of three eggs and a piece of bacon or ham. Lately eggs have made me nauseous so I've had two scoops of whey protein powder, 4 oz of coconut milk, 1 tbs coconut oil, 4 oz water. For lunch I usually have either some protein and stir fryed veggies or a BAS with red bell pepper and carrot sticks. I never use more than 1 tbs of dressing on my salads. For dinner I always prepare some protein and a generous helping of vegetables. I hardly eat any sugar if any on most days. I don't eat fruit very often and when I do it's usually an apple, half of a grapefruit, or a banana. I haven't been eating nuts and when I do it's usually one serving of almonds or cashews. I'm drinking 32-64oz of water everyday. I have a dark chocolate square on most days.

                        I am a little bit stuck in a rut with the veggies I eat everyday, there isn't much variety there. I usually eat mushrooms, bell peppers, carrots, celery, onion, romaine lettuce, zucchini and parsnips on occasion. The protein sources are usually pork roast, beef flap meat or ground beef, chicken thighs and tenderloins, and bacon. They are not grassfed sources, unfortunately we can't afford that yet. The eggs I eat are from grassfed chickens and the butter is from grassfed cows. I don't eat a lot of dairy, maybe an oz of cheese every few days. I use coconut oil to cook with and on occasion will use bacon fat, but this is maybe once or twice a month.

                        According the the macronutrient break down given in the book I should be eating about 1600 calories at with approx 100g or less of carbs, 80g protein and w/e fat I need to feel satiated. I think I'll take a closer look at these #'s to see what that really means in terms of calorie breakdown per category.

                        My lifestyle right now is pretty sedentary. I stay home with my two kids. Most of the day is spent playing on the floor with the baby, doing household chores and a weekly hour or longer trip to Costco and an hour long trip to the grocery store. I do the LHT recommendation in the e-book and have started jogging for 20 mins on the treadmill three days a week (never gonig above the 75% rule). The weather here is cold and extremely windy all day long so I don't have the option to exercise outside. I know I'm not getting enough Vit D because I rarely go outside when it's cold. I haven't found a supplement for that yet, but I need to. I also don't have a decent omega 3/6 ratio, but will be purchasing some fish oil supplements soon.

                        So there you have it! I'm sure when I go back through and read that I'll be able to find something I'm doing wrong. I feel like I'm doing what I should and my body has made some changes, but that stupid body fat % # will not budge. My measurements are also the same from when I started so I know it's not all in my head. I was tested two years ago for insulin resistance and they concluded that I DO have it and was put on Metformin, however I've stopped taking that months ago. I'm hoping I can find a way to get my body fat % down soon, I hate looking at such a high number every week


                        • #13
                          Ok, I've been at this for about 6 weeks now and I'm not seeing any results aside from my initial weight loss. I'm floating at 155 lbs and according the the body fat calculator online (calculated with measurements) I'm stuck at 28% BF. I've been LHT three times a week as well as doing pull ups, squats, and the other recommended exercises when I feel like I've been too lazy during the day. I'm not going to lie, I lead a very sedentary lifestyle, especially when it's cold. I sit on the floor playing with kids all day, and when the kids are napping I'm either cleaning or napping myself. I'm not as bothered by my lack of weight loss as much as I'm bothered by my lack of improvement on the way I feel.

                          I've suspected I have an under-active thyroid for a long time now. I've had multiple tests done and each time the doctor calls to tell me everything seems normal and thats the end of it. I've never actually seen any of the test results so I can't say for sure whether I'm within normal ranges or not, the only inclination I've had to assume otherwise is one doctor said I'm in the low end of normal, but still within normal. I recently had a test done so today I'm going to get a copy of my results and dissect them myself. I'm done going by what the doctor says. And if I am within normal ranges, what is causing so many of my symptoms? I have really low blood pressure and always have, I'm cold all the time, my skin is always itchy and feels somewhat dry regardless of my water consumption and use of lotions. I'm always tired, to the point where I can basically take a nap any time of the day regardless of the amount of sleep I've had. My vision is deteriorating, especially my ability to see at night.

                          I do know that I have PCOS and insulin resistance. I know I'm gluten intolerant and possibly dairy intolerant as well. I've cut out almost all sugars with honey being the only exeption and even then I only eat a very small amount of honey on rare occasion. I've stopped eating wheat and glutenated products/foods. I haven't been eating any nuts for at least a week. I don't eat potatoes and haven't had any amount of rice for over a month. The only grain I've had recently would be corn, in the form of popcorn and corn chips; and those were in very small amounts. I'm drinking enough water and taking Vit D, fish oil, and a daily vitamin. There are small amounts of soybean oil in my supplements, but I can't imagine they're causing any kind of symptoms for me. I do eat a small amount of dark chocolate every day, and I only drink wine on the weekend and only one or two glasses.

                          I'm trying to be completely honest with myself and I know there are some days where I could do better with meals. I do tend to snack between meals and I know that's not good, but could it be what's causing my weight loss stall? I wanted to start doing some IF'ing, but my sleep is still really broken up because of the baby. There's no fixing my lack of sleep and broken up sleep problem until Sophie is sleeping through the night. She most likely won't do this for another 9 months though. I've done what I can to get her to stay asleep and not have to wake up for feeds, but if she gets cold she'll wake up and I'll have to put her blankets back on her.

                          Today I'm just so sick of feeling like sh*t. There must be something I'm either doing wrong, or something that my body isn't doing right; because I'm doing what I should to lose weight and feel healthier with little results. Anyone else doing the same thing as I am would have lost weight and felt like a whole new person by now so why am I not? I'm not giving up on the primal lifestyle, I always give up about 6 weeks into something new. I'm sticking it out in hopes that maybe I just need more time. It did take years for me to get this way and I can't expect an overnight change. Sometimes looking at the success stories helps, but other times it just makes me mad when I read about people that have lost weight and maintained their perfect bodies with little effort on their part; and did it all in such a short amount of time that it seems too good to be true. I know everything isn't easy, I just wish I could get a break every once in a while.


                          • #14
                            Insist in getting testing for adrenal fatigue or find a new doctor that will. I just went to the doctor today for exactly that. I have a home cortisol testing kit (spit in a tube 4 times in one day at various times) that I will mail in to a lab. Testing at one time in the day tells yo only what your thyroid is up to at that moment. over the course of the day helps determine if it's responding inappropriately. I also suffer from chronic fatigue (and "moviation" issues. I know I'd feel better if I got up and walked, but I strongly believe there is an energy component missing that would make me feel like actually getting off my butt inthe first place).
                            Depression Lies


                            • #15
                              Thanks! I'm going to set up another appointment with my doctor and try to not let him disregard my symptoms again. Where did you get this cortisol test kit? You say it's a home kit so I'm assuming you had to pay for it rather than the doctor giving it to you...was it expensive? I know something is up with my thyroid or possibly hormones, I just can't get anyone to listen to me