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primal journal - joan

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  • Hey Joan!
    I went off track for a bit, but am back on as of today. Kept my workouts up, and my diet was still decent, but had way too much non primal food as well.

    Anyways, really great to see you are going strong. Awesome!
    "Your actions speak to me so loud, I can not hear a single word you are saying."

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    • two years later

      i haven't posted in almost two years, and boy have they flown by. i've been decently primal throughout that time, and have watched my body fat disappear. some nice milestones:

      -i can actually See my cheekbones for the first time since hitting puberty
      -my butt has gotten smaller to the point that i need more cushiony chairs to be comfortable. damn! i liked my bigger butt
      -i have seen my obliques for the first time, like, ever

      i've gotten to a place where i wouldn't try to lose more body fat unless i wanted to move into fighting as a profession - women's mma would be awesome if i weren't worried about hurting myself in a way that keeps me from running my farm. And, if i want to make a baby one day soon, i probably shouldn't be much skinnier. i'll try to take the same type and angle of photos that i used to for day to day comparison and see where i'm at. in the mean time, here are a few recent photos:


      dancing rabbit market by henna lion, on Flickr


      cobbing the shed by henna lion, on Flickr


      excellent thrift store sweater by henna lion, on Flickr

      let's see how my life has been fitting into the things i was tracking before:

      food: i've been eating home grown meat, eggs, and raw dairy Almost to the exclusion of bought-stuff. lots of home grown vegetables and herbs, WAY less grains and legumes. still more sugar than i'd like.

      exercise: i still walk every single day. during the summer i live in a hut down in the creek bottom, so i walk up and down a decent hill to get to the rest of my farm. i moved paddocks every 1-3 days all year, which meant pulling and pounding t-posts into the ground and moving ~10 16' cattle panels each time, as well as catching and lifting errant goats and sheep occasionally lots of digging this year, and lots of hauling as always.

      sun: yes. though this is shifting now as we go into winter, for 3/4 of the year i am mostly outside all day. it feels great.

      sleep: this gets easier during the winter. i average 8-10 hours a night.

      stress: SO LOW. i've removed folks from my life who were not good for me. i've got an excellent partner who Loves the way i live, work that is satisfying, a relatively efficient routine taking care of the livestock, and a Comfortable home.

      squat: yes, during work when helpful and every day to poop! i love not having to sit on a toilet seat.

      stand: eh, a decent amount. i'm usually on my feet during spring, summer, fall while working.

      barefoot: not for a few months now. that'll have to wait until spring.
      -joan's primal journal and blog-

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      • Yaaaaay Joan!!!!! Sounds like you are living the life. And you look fantastic too ... very happy <3
        ~elaine. twitter, primal journal.


        Originally posted by vontrapp
        CoWorker: What? Cmon live a little.
        Me: No thanks, I'd rather live a lot.

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        • 27 years old
          5' 9"
          ~170lbs

          a year and a half already since my last update. in some ways i've been more primal, in some ways less. my partner and i moved to the UP of michigan last summer, so my diet shifted away from home grown somewhat, though we did get some venison last season and are now in our first Full hunting/fishing/foraging/growing season here in our new home and are doing well so far eating from the land. i've been canning wild veggies (and eating them fresh, of course), and we've been eating wild turkey, porcupine, and some of the sheep we've slaughtered. since we needed a bit of extra cash after moving i've been working in a health foods store, but i'm down to 2-3 days a week AND our etsy shops are making enough that i can probably ditch that within the next few months. which is to say, i have FOUR Straight Days at home (and in the wild) at Least, Every week to do projects, build, workout, wander the woods, and eat healthy without having to stare at shelves full of chocolate bars for hours on end (at work).

          since sticking with this amazing partner, though, i have found my life getting Easier than it has ever been - which is tough for my activity level... since i'm now only one of Two people hauling all the firewood, chopping, splitting, stacking, moving animals, etc - and he has this strange tendency to make things more Efficient so i'm always doing less and less work... i rather liked my primitive squalor and its attendant muscle mass ah, well. now that we're moving away from domesticated critters i'll have more time to climb trees and run around chasing critters in the woods, anyway. AND we just got the blacksmith shop up and running, which of course is great for my arms and back.

          so. body changes... i don't have a way to weigh myself, but i think i was 170 last time i went to the doc for a checkup (which pretty much never happens, but... that was last fall). despite being at nearly my highest weight ever (175 was highest), i have stayed low in fat in general. i'm still wearing the same clothes i was in college and high school and they fit the same. (i'm 27) my butt is still un-squishy enough that it gets sore on hard chairs, although it is still pleasingly curvy, which i like. i just noticed this week that i can actually see some definition around my chin, which i haven't had since puberty - i have Always had a smooth-edged facial outline, from ears down to chin and up the other side. only in the last two years have i gained Any jawline definition, and now i'm FINALLY starting to lose that extra little fat in my lower cheeks. thank the gods, i've wanted it gone so long.

          now that we are in the building season on our new land i'll have plenty of easy workouts, hauling materials around and helping my honey build. there's also still Plenty of firewood to cut, haul, split, and stack. we borrowed an archery target from a friend, so i'm practicing with bow and arrow (would like to work up to a selfbow someday, which always seem to have a much heavier draw). i guess i'm getting into stats, so i'll go back to that format for the rest:

          food - great lately. very minimal grains, lots of proteins and fats, local and wild meats, varied nuts and seeds, dried and fresh fruits, wild vegetables
          exercise - great lately. lots of building work and hauling work, and i've gotten into the habit of stretching behind the counter at work when no one's here (which is often)
          sun - yes, on days at home. although the bugs are a deterrent, but i'm still outside a good bit doing projects
          sleep - yes! 99% of the time at least 8 hours a night, more often 9ish
          stress - wonderful. i only have a little bit around how much longer this job will last, but i feel Super great knowing that i'm fully ready to put in my two weeks whenever the situation arises
          squat - to poop, every day, and in other situations working with the animals or gathering, etc
          stand - at work, a lot. at home, a lot, moving around doing projects
          barefoot - only a few times so far this year. winter lasts a long time up here but i love squelchy muddy toes, so now is the time

          my biggest change for the future is that i'm not expecting to make a baby any time soon, so i don't have to worry about maintaining a certain amount of fat for a safe pregnancy. which means i can cut down, beef up, and start some real training for hunting and combat fun times. woohoo!!!
          -joan's primal journal and blog-

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          • PICT0122.jpg
            a recent wild salad - with red clover blossoms, thimbleberry leaves, cattail hearts, dandelion leaves, plantain leaves, chive blossoms, and probably other things that i'm forgetting.

            the last few weeks have been good. i've been starting to rate my snack choices based more on fat/sugar ratio than "does it contain sugar=feel bad about it". turns out some of my go-to snacks are less sugar than a typical can of 'juice'/soda/etc and have Tons of good animal fats. still dairy, but i'm not doing those too often anyway.

            i love dried fruits, nuts, and seeds. there are plenty of fruits i'm not that excited about fresh, but putting dried fruits and nuts on food makes it suddenly feel like Everything gets Many exciting toppings, which is super fun for me.

            oh, and i was not a big vegetable person growing up (understatement of the year), but harvesting and eating and exploring Wild Vegetables is incredible and SO different than paying money that you had to work for for stuff that was farmed hundreds of miles away, even if it is organic. so much better. so much more life involved. sumac shoots are delicious. and Grapevine Tendrils are THE BEST SNACK EVER. i did not know this until the last few weeks of my life.
            Last edited by joan; 06-21-2015, 11:43 AM. Reason: added more
            -joan's primal journal and blog-

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            • alright, so here are pictures from the other day - in the same shorts as several years ago, which i fit into somehow despite their being size 7 (normally i wear 12 or 14 if i'm wearing women's - or 32 to 36 in men's). this is at least four weeks into a specific diet shift, away from carbs and with a heavy focus on proteins and fats. my honey says he's noticing a change in my shape and muscle tone. i still don't have a way to weigh myself, which would be nice, but.

              PICT0001.jpg
              PICT0003.jpg
              PICT0005.jpg
              -joan's primal journal and blog-

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              • food - doing pretty well. still more sugar than i need, even if i'm counting it in my total carbs and keeping that below 150g/day in general. fats and proteins are great, lots of nuts, seeds, fruit, wild fruits and veggies from the land. we just butchered a lamb we raised, so we're eating delicious meats right now (and later... i want to make liverwurst)
                exercise - doing okay. i've been tending to have a few 'on' days in a row, then getting sore enough that i take a few days off. i busted ass tanning a sheep skin the other day, and hauling around a roadkill coyote without letting it touch me (was full of bugs) which was a great workout. my arms and legs are super sore from the tanning work. hours upon hours of it. but so worth it for a nice sheep skin.
                sun - yep, and it's Hot
                sleep - doing pretty well. still tired a lot during the day lately, not sure why. getting at least 8-9 hours most nights.
                stress - pretty good. not wanting to have to work in town any more, but. that should change within a few months. patience.
                squat - every day for at least a few minutes if not more
                stand - yes, constantly it seems. i love my couch.
                barefoot - yes! much more lately, which is so great. <3
                -joan's primal journal and blog-

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                • Good luck to you, Joan! I think that's insanely cool that you've built a place to live and thrive. You definitely have the lots of slow movement part of Primal down!
                  Last edited by xchxfth; 07-11-2015, 08:29 PM.

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