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New Beginnings - My Paelo Adventure

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  • New Beginnings - My Paelo Adventure

    So here goes;

    Im a 31 yr old gal who is living in Thailand at the moment. I herald from Australia but have lived over here for the past 2 years or so. I am about 163cm (5'4") and weigh ~66kg (unfort i have no scale and am currently travelling in Cambodia). I have never been really overweight, nor underweight, but do nudge the upper end of the healthy weight range. Do I like my body? Not really. I have large boobs, do not like my stomach area and can see flab gaining around my arms. In addition to this I have a gorgeous and wonderful boyfriend who is lean and tall (a foot taller than me!) - argh!

    Why the change? A few we all do.
    Firstly, as with many people, I am not happy with my appearance. Living in Thailand is hard because being a foreigner you are already bigger and fatter than the vast majority of the locals - and they love to tell u that you are fat or have been eating too much (yes, the really do tell you it to your face!). Also, I really dislike pictures of myself and my boyfriend. All I can see is "Fatty and Skinny" - me the short, dumpy one beside the tall and lean guy.
    Secondly, I am concerned about food and health. I am the primary cook in our house and really love food stuff. I love fresh produce (which is thankfully very cheap and very abundant here in Thailand!), i love lean meats, and i love reading about food stuff. I cook a variety of dishes and get a kick out of creating beautiful dishes for my friends and family. At one stage, I was cooking & photographing food for money! I have been reading and researching a lot of stuff about food and health of late and have been coming to the conclusion that we all need to live a better life with better food. Documentaries like Food Inc and Food Matters have really stuck in my head and I have been making a concerted effort to eat less processed food. Surely the increase in cancers, obesity, mental illness and other health problems has got to be related to what we are putting into our bodies.
    Thirdly, a very close friend has been struggling with his weight and has been trying to make an effort to shift it. He has even gone as far as to make monetary bets with people about the weight loss he can achieve. Personally I have thought he has been going about it the wrong way - pushing his body too hard, starving his body of amazing foods and of course, relying too heavily on processed carbs. So the Paelo challenge was begun to help him too - Myself, my boyfriend and our friend all have a Google Docs spreadsheet that we are recording our meals in and keeping one another in check. So far so good at day 9.

    I am really positive about succeeding in this lifestyle. It fits into my personal values of eating food that is both delicious and nutritious. I want to look and feel great. I want to be happy of photos of myself and my boyfriend and even think about buying a bikini. I also can see that this isnt just a quick fix, that it is something that can easily be incorporated into a way of life.

    My biggest challenges I think I have already overcome. Saying no to the serve of amazing garlic bread that was put in front of us last night was hard but my god I felt good. Buying fresh fruit instead of a bag of chips for a long bus ride felt great and so did I after it. I have been a sucker for cheese most of my life but I feel I can now say no to binging on it. Being in Thailand means that the breads that I love so dearly are not readily available - sourdough! ARGH! Once back home after this travel (in Cambodia) I look forward to getting stuck into some of the exercise stuff - weights, sprints. I am pretty unfit but live on the 9th story of an apartment building so look forward to running up and down those stairs! ha!

    My Journal in Paleo Eating

  • #2
    Welcome and goodluck with it all


    • #3
      Thanks Ayla

      right now i am waiting for my boyfriend to wake up so I can go eat something tasty! gah!

      I must say that i am really looking forward to getting home and having a kitchen to use. Although I don't have an oven or microwave so some recipes i have seen will be not possible. also, being at home will mean I can eat when I am hungry and not have to wait for the boyf to be awake :P

      My Journal in Paleo Eating


      • #4
        Yesterday went well I think and was day 10 of my Paelo

        B: spinach and fetta quiche (didnt eat the crust) and mixed garden salad + shared a black coffee (no sugar) & a banana, pineapple and coconut blend drink - no dairy. I actually felt very ill and bloated after eating this. I am wondering if I may have accidentally eaten some of the crust of the quiche or it had soaked into some of the spinach stuff? Or perhaps it was the fetta that made me feel queasy??

        L: Steamed blue swimmer crab (1.5 small ones) + stir fried pepper prawns (about 6 medium prawns) - we ended up having a second lot of crab about 2hrs later because we couldnt resist eating them while watching the gorgeous sunset over the Gulf of Thailand! The second serve was just boiled crab and I had 2 medium ones yumm! We also shared one beer which tasted terrible! First beer in 10 days and it tasted bad - really strong yeasty taste. Didn't enjoy.

        D: Grilled pork chop with steamed vegies and salad + soda water with fresh lime.

        S: Handful of pistachio nuts.

        My Journal in Paleo Eating


        • #5
          Day 11 - feeling good today, did some bike riding and walking too.

          B: Omelet with grilled chicken & black iced coffee

          L: BBQ'd pork ribs with salad

          D: Pumpkin soup + freshly squeezed orange juice

          S: Small banana

          My Journal in Paleo Eating


          • #6
            Day 12 - Did a fair bit of walking around Phnom Penh on this day.

            B: Omelet with grilled chicken, black iced coffee no sugar

            L: This was a fail meal - in the flavour and the actual meals - ICK Fish Amok (or supposed to be) & Mixed Salad- this "curry" came out as boiled fish and pineapple with onion. absolutely revolting. couldnt eat it. The "salad" was covered in a sickly sweet dressing. I ate about a tablespoon of rice to eat something because it was just awful. Also had a freshly squeezed apple juice, no added sugar.

            D: Taco salad with no tortilla.

            S: Fresh pineapple slices, small banana

            Day 12 was a bit of a crap day. Travelling can be hard on Paelo, especially in Cambodia. A lot of the food is difficult to order or comes out different to how it is described on a menu. Trying to ask what is in the items can be met with major confusion too. But these are just baby setbacks and I will continue to make an effort. Must say I am looking forward to going home where I can have better control of food though.

            My Journal in Paleo Eating


            • #7
              Day 13 - walked up and down a lot of stairs today. new guesthouse that we are staying at is on the 5th floor, but you have to go up 10 flights of steep stairs to get to it! GAH. good exercise though

              B: Bacon and small pork sausage + black iced coffee (no sugar)

              L: Grilled chicken salad + dragonfruit shake (just ice + water, no sugar)

              D: Shared a Tom Yum soup with prawns, grilled pork ribs + iced jasmine tea and a iced black coffee (had this at about 4pm)

              D: Carrot, celery & cucumber rounds with some cheese! (had this at about 8pm) First decent amount cheese in 13 days and we had blue cheese + swiss cheese. Only had a small amount but feel ok. Little tired - but thats me normally at night anyway!

              S: Rose apple, banana

              My Journal in Paleo Eating


              • #8
                Day 14 - Woo! 2 weeks!

                So today heralded the 2 week mark and I am feeling good, even if my diet hasn't been 100% paleo yet. As I said before, its hard to be 100% when you don't have access to a kitchen and are travelling - but I am trying! I really am noticing the flavour of fruits and vegies a lot - the cherry tomatoes we had today were so so sweet and delicious! Just amazing! Even the carrot was juicy and sweet. The only other tiime I have experienced such a difference in flavour was when I gave up smoking years and years ago.

                B: Omelet with tomato, onion & a sprinkle of mozarella cheese + black coffee on ice (no sugar)

                L: Raw carrot, cucumber, celery & cherry tomatoes with a little blue cheese and swiss cheese

                D: Grilled salmon and green beans + 1 pork rib. the salmon was served with fries and I avoided all but 1 - I had to try one and see. BLERGH! Tasteless and greasy!

                S: rose apple and raw vegies.

                What I think is really awesome is how much my boyf is on board with this change. He's reading loads, sending me links and talking to me about the food and how we are feeling. Its awesome. Can't wait to hit the 3 week mark! And also go home - only 3 more sleeps. YEY!!

                My Journal in Paleo Eating


                • #9
                  Hi Bamboozel,

                  Welcome, I've enjoyed reading your posts! I think you're doing great given the travel situation and foreign language menus, etc. I've been probably about 70% primal since mid December and have really been ramping it up (to lose weight a little faster) since about a week ago. I also taste more flavor in food now (and the small piece of bread I tried at a restaurant a few days ago tasted like paper - EWW no thanks!).

                  Definitely looking forward to fitting in my clothes again that I wore when I met my boyfriend 3 years ago. Being a couple that loves food and wine and happy hours made me gain 20 lbs (9 kilos)... boo! I have about 15 more pounds to lose until I'm back there. Seems doable and I'm excited to do it healthily instead of with a yo-yo effect diet! My boyfriend is super tall and so when he puts on 15 lbs you can't even tell. The good thing is that he's always been more of a low-carb person and so my new lifestyle doesn't really bother him. He happily plays the guinea pig for my chicken drumsticks wrapped in bacon (but then again which guy wouldn't?) and other meals. He also loves grilling meat, so I just throw a few zucchinis on the BBQ alongside the steaks and we have a full primal meal in a matter of 10 minutes.

                  Have a safe travel back, I'll check in with you again :-)

                  25, 5'7" - SW 158 (12/10/11) - CW 153 (01/25/12) - GW 135
                  "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
                  Follow my Journey:


                  • #10
                    Thanks Anna-Banana! my boyf sounds the same as you - an absolute meat freak! he was very happy to cast away the empty carbs and get stuck into the good gear. He even happily munches on the leftover bacon fat that i pull off. annd he LOVES organs, especially chicken hearts. In Thailand they sell them on skewers and bbq'd and he just is in heaven. Ha! maybe one day I will be able to stomach it, but for now I'm fine with other foods heheh.

                    Day 15:

                    B: Bacon! & some cherry tomatoes + black iced coffee.

                    L: Grilled chicken & small salad + blue cheese crumble (we have this cheese we have to eat before we check out tomorrow! eep!)

                    D: We had a cheat meal tonight - the boyf idea, not mine! anywho the place we went had 2-4-1 drinks (didnt know till we arrived and ordered) and I ordered a cider. WOW....soooo sugary. TBH I didn't really enjoy it that much and really noticed how sweet it was. Thank god for ice and making it water the drink dow - yey! Anywho the meal I had was 3 sausages (pork) peas + mashed potato. I ate probably 1-2Tbsp of mashed potato that was in a ginormous pile + some of my boyfriends salad. The meal was ok but boy i felt soooo full afterwards - uncomfortably so. I don't know if it was the sugar, the potato or a combination. But thank goodness we had quite a walk home and stopped off at some markets. The crazy thing was that when I went to go to sleep at about 11pm i tossed and turned. urgghh! Normally I have no trouble getting to sleep or falling back to sleep and even less trouble of late but it was infuriating. Amazing what an impact that cider had on my sleep patterns...

                    S: orange, rose apple, cheese.

                    One thing I have only just realised is how different I am feeling. Normally I suffer from headaches, nausea, grumbly belly, aches....nothing too serious, but enough to whinge about it. And I hated how much i would whinge - one day its this, the next day its that....and I haven't been feeling like that at all in the last few weeks with the exception of a headache twice. One health problem that has always irritated me and made me avoid doing exercise is this weird cramping I would get in my thigh on my left leg. After exercise or if I sat with my legs crossed for too long or sometimes it would just happen, i would get this incredibly painful cramping in my left thigh at the outer side. It would be so bad sometimes that i would have trouble falling to sleep and no amount of tiger balm, massaging, walking it out, stretching it or anti-inflammatory would make it stop. I couldn't touch it in some cases and it would make it hard to walk. really awful. But it hasn't reared its head DESPITE walking lots (including up and down the 12 flights of stairs in this guesthouse!!) or bike riding. If this diet means that I dont have to suffer from that pain again, I will be SO SO SO happy!!!! /crossed fingers

                    My Journal in Paleo Eating


                    • #11
                      Day 16: Final day in Phnom Penh and Travel

                      B: Bacon, carrot, celery, cucumber & cherry tomatoes + cheese (good to see the last of that cheese!)

                      L: we went to this AMAZING cafe in Phnom Penh called "Friends" - its run by a charity and works with street kids and at risk people to train them up to work in restaurants etc. amazing food. We had parmesan crusted white fish with ratattoui (?), pork meat balls with ginger & grilled vegetables with olive oil and lemon. Also had a soda with lime juice. Very yummy.

                      D: We left Phnom Penh and they fed us on the flight. In hindsight we should have eaten BEFORE getting on the plane because they had all carb, all starch all sugar options We ate the filling out of the sandwich - ham,plastic-cheese, tomato and lettuce and then ate the fruity cake thing. Felt so bloated afterwards. Yuck! Later we tried to find some other food but our hotel had no restaurant open so we had to go to 711. Luckily in thailand there are some good options. We bought a tin of tuna and some boiled eggs for the boyfriend and I had some almonds and a carrot.

                      My Journal in Paleo Eating


                      • #12
                        Day 17: YAY! Back Home!

                        B: After looking at the options at the airport (junk, junk and more junk) we ate a yoghurt and some apple slices. Thats one of the last times I will eat that rubbish yoghurt. It was "tropical" flavour and tasted like chemicals. ick. we also had a black espresso on ice.

                        L: YAYY first meal at home!!! We raced to the market as soon as we arrived and loaded up our bags with vegies and meat. YUM. For lunch I cooked up some pork "burgers". The mince here is made right in front of you without any additives - SO awesome. The meat has to pretty much be bought and cooked the same day (because they kill the animals that morning) which is fine - means fresher meat for me! So I mixed up the burgers with minced pork, fresh parsley, onion, garlic, chilli, cumin and salt n pepper. Grilled in a little extra pork fat with some onions grilled too yum! Served it on a bed of lettuce, tomato and home-made beetroot and topped with a slice of cheese (have to finish off the crap in the fridge) and some tasty jalapenos I had made before we left. So yumm! The boyfriend was sooo happy with it too.

                        D: For dinner we went to our friends place to have a BBQ. We asked to be in charge of food (haha!) and cooked up some thick pork ribs, chicken thigh fillets, chicken wings + big fresh salad and I made a "quiche" thing. Just cooked up some onion & garlic, mushrooms, capsicum, zucchini, tomatoes and bean shoots then mixed in 3 eggs and slow cooked it in the fry pan. really yummy and really healthy!

                        Was great to finally have total control over the ingredients and the meals that we have being back. Our friends had noticed that we had lost weight which was awesome and my friend even said that I looked really great. So fab to get a compliment. We also walked to and from the market (about an hour round trip) and I walked back with 4kgs of meat and veg on my back arrrrrgh! My shoulders are feeling it today.

                        My Journal in Paleo Eating


                        • #13
                          Day 18: Back in the Kitchen

                          B: leftover pork pattie served up with some grilled mushrooms, tomato, chinese cabbage, onion and zucchini + black coffee with 1/2 tsp sugar

                          L: big salad with grilled chicken & a ton of vegies including some home-made beetroot.

                          D: chicken, mushroom, chinese cabbage and broccoli soup.

                          S: small handful almonds, iced coffee with coconut milk (wow that is one tasty combination!) 1 Tbsp honey + 1 tsp promite.

                          Today was great! had control over everything that we ate. However, I did notice i was craving sugar a lot today... urgh...not really sure why. Maybe its coming up to my period time? or perhaps because of my sugar in the coffee thing this morning my body was craving it?? who knows. Will fix that tomorrow by having no sugar in coffee - maybe have the coconut milk coffee trick. Also want to get some snack foods - like fruit, make some meat balls, some bacon etc in the house so that I have tasty things readily available so if I am craving sugar then I can have a meat hit instead.

                          My Journal in Paleo Eating


                          • #14
                            Day 19: Back at it

                            So yesterday was not all good and today was a WHOLE lot better. We did get some sad news though and my boyfriend really wanted to go have a couple of drinks to commiserate. His cat that was about 15 years old had to get put down. This is the 4th cat in about 8 weeks that we know that has died and we LOVE cats. The first one was our very own fur baby. She fell from our balcony, 9 stories down and died instantly. She meant so much to me and to my boyfriend and I am still very very upset about this (tears forming). The second cat was his aunts cat who was very sick and had to be put down, then that same aunt came home a few days later to find her other cat dead. It had been mauled by a dog and yesterday we found out about his old cat back in Australia. Urgh. I love animals so much and its heartbreaking to have not one but 4 animals close to us pass away.

                            Anyway, food wise and EXERCISE wise we did well (besides the vodkas).

                            B: 2-egg omelet with capsicum, tomato, cabbage and pork pattie + coffee with coconut milk.

                            L: I didnt eat a proper lunch - was still full after the omelet

                            D: Beef ragu/bolognaise with mushrooms served on broccolini and zucchni noodles

                            S: 3 spicy pork meatballs, 2 bananas + 3 vodka with soda water & lime.

                            And yesterday we also walked to the market and back (about an hour round trip) then stomped up the 9 flights of stairs to our apartment and THEN while we were still motivated did 2 body weight circuts (squats, lunges, plank, jumping-jacks, row). Felt great!
                            Last edited by Bamboozel; 01-24-2012, 06:35 PM.

                            My Journal in Paleo Eating


                            • #15
                              Has anyone else been having troubles posting?? Urgh!

                              Day 20 - Bring it on

                              Today has gone well, nutrition wise I think although I have come down with a damn cold sore. And its also that time of the at least that explains the sugar cravings I was having the other day!! Not sure if the cold sore is related to my period or if it is related to all the crap (sugar/grains/processed stuff) leaving my body...hopefully! Its a pain in the arse and makes it painful to eat But I still managed to eat hehe

                              B: Fruit platter + coffee with coconut milk (had to post a pic cause it was so pretty!) - the boiled eggs were for my boyfriend

                              L: Grilled chicken breast, steamed greens and leftover omelet.

                              D: Pumpkin, sweet potato and carrot soup + 4 pork meatballs with Franks hot sauce

                              S: 3 pork meatballs and 2 bananas
                              Last edited by Bamboozel; 01-25-2012, 06:24 AM.

                              My Journal in Paleo Eating