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22 and Primal

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  • 22 and Primal

    Hello everyone, anyone...myself? I introduced myself in meet and greet the other day but tonight I will start a journal because tomorrow I am starting a Whole30! A little recap on me and a couple of facts: I am a 22yo female who recently moved up to Brooklyn, NY from Charleston, SC and I am proud to say that I am going primal. After four years of college, binge drinking, eating, smoking, and pretty much anything else you can binge on, I am ready to change my lifestyle! In June I was diagnosed with Grave's disease and hyperthyroidism which I believe I have had for years and was not aware of it. I knew that I had individual things "wrong" with me but I never counted them as a whole and well I guess no one in my life thought about connecting all of the dots. The recommended treatment for this disease is to begin with pills....a LOT of pills which could continue on for years. But who in their right mind would want to participate in a treatment like that?! "May or may not achieve remission" says my Dr....sounds like I need to do something. So here I am. And after 30 days I will be getting labs done for my thyroid to see what I am hoping will be a dramatic change in my thyroid function, essentially I am my own guinea pig!

    I tried to start on August 9th and was doing quite well until last night when I was hanging out with friends who 1. took me to an italian restaurant in Little Italy where I had to endure the large basket of bread presented in front of me and watch the large tables of families eat their complimentary bread while they ate their large pizza followed by was torture to say the least. I ordered the vegetarian veggie plate which did not indicate exactly what "vegetables" I would be receiving. Out came the plate loaded with big chunks of sauteed potatoes, green beans, and two pieces of broccoli, I wanted to cry. No potatoes for me, I offered them up to my friend. 2. they dragged me to some swanky rooftop bar. I know what you must be thinking... "don't you have any self control?! Couldn't you just say no?!" And you would be right in thinking this but at the time I tried to convince myself that I could handle all of these temptations and didn't want to be the party pooper when everyone knows me as the party starter! I had one glass of tequila with lime juice and felt so awful that I left barely saying goodbye.

    My insomnia returned last night after a week because I beat myself up over this little indiscretion. I know that is not what I should do but I can't help but feel guilty about not doing what I know is right for me, I want this so badly! So tomorrow is my one and only do-over. I am going to fall asleep at 12 and wake up at 6 30 and go do my four miles because thats what makes me feel good! Then I am going to journal every little thing that I put into my body.

    My excessive social life will now be taking a back seat to what I need to do for me!
    Before going primal I was always doing green smoothies except I would use way too much fruit and add some nasty protein powder to them. Recently I came up with a DELICIOUS and easy recipe that has been approved by both primal and non primal eaters. Tonight I went to Whole Foods and got almost a pound of spinach, 4 bananas and unsweetened original almond milk.

    I separated the spinach equally and cut each banana in half. Then put a set amount of spinach and half a banana into a ziplock bag and then straight into the freezer, now when I want a quick lunch, all I have to do is put the contents of the bag into the blender and add 1 1/2 cups of almond milk, blend it up and i've got a cold green beverage! Try it out, so so good!

    If you made it this far down, I appreciate you listening to me rant and I hope to hear from you soon. If your doing a Whole30 and want to share your experiences with me or just going primal, i'd love to hear how your doing. You have my full support!

  • #2
    Day 1, its only 12:45 and I already feel the need to post... I went to bed at midnight last night as planned but was not able to get up at my usual time of 6:30am...instead, I slept until 11am! 11 hours!! That seems extremely excessive to me, why oh why am I so tired?? Every time I wake up that late I feel terrible about myself, like I have thrown my day in the trash. I am currently unemployed and looking for a job so I feel that it is of utmost importance that I create a schedule for myself.

    Anyways, once I was able to get out of bed I went into the kitchen and cut up a mango that had become ripe. I learned two things about mangos while doing this 1. I suck at cutting them, wow, what a huge mess! and 2. Mangos are way too sweet...something I had forgotten I guess. I will most likely not be buying another one during my Whole30. Chopped it up and put it in the freezer, that will be a dessert option for me.

    I am going to call this Brunch since I started at 11:30:

    2 strips of bacon (baked in oven at 350 in a cast iron skillet)
    2 Eggs (fried in cast iron skillet with bacon grease) some pepper and basil
    2 slices of heirloom tomato
    1 handful of kale (sauteed in EVOO)

    1/2 cup of decaf coffee (prepared in french press)
    1/2 cup of almond milk (makes the coffee sweet without needing honey and its dairy free, win!)

    Now off to clean my room and then a nice long afternoon in Prospect Park doing yoga and soaking up some sun.


    • #3
      The tiredness could be the Graves disease or that you aren't eating enough. Do you have weight to lose? Trying putting your food into fitday or paleotrack for a few days to check you're eating enough.


      • #4
        Good Luck from Over the pond! keep posting and let us know how it goes!!



        • #5
          Thank you for your response! Sometimes I forget to factor in the disease, you could definitely be right about that! But just in case, I am taking your advice and trying out paleotrack to see if I am in fact not eating enough. Weight loss is not really concern.


          • #6
            2nd 1/2 of Day 1...

            Before leaving for the park today, I made one of my self pre-packaged smoothies which is:

            2 cups of frozen spinach
            1/2 a frozen banana
            1 1/2 cups of almond milk

            I also had:

            1/4 cup raw almonds

            LOTS of water


            1/4 cup raw almonds
            1 slice of watermelon
            more water


            1 Thyme and pepper crusted pork tenderloin stuffed with kale/ garlic (cast iron/ bacon grease)
            1/2 sweet potato and 2 carrots roasted with garlic and EVOO
            Arugula salad with heirloom tomato, pepper, basil, EVOO, and lemon juice

            After dinner:

            4 squares of 80% chocolate (I was upset about something and went a little overboard :/...)
            A couple of frozen mango slices

            Over all, not a bad first day although I could definitely eat more meats and veg. and way less fruit, nuts and...chocolate. I will try and work on that. I am exhausted now, did not do much today but managed to make it to the park where I proceeded to climb a tree which i have not done in years! and put my feet in a waterfall and lay on the rocks for an hour or so.The sun, fresh air, and playtime is always nice to get in this city.

            With this, I feel that I am excited to wake up everyday! Excited about the potential of this new lifestyle and looking forward to gaining energy. Goodnight!


            • #7
              Day 2. What a day. A long one.

              I had a bit of trouble falling asleep at 11 last night because my "neighbors" (people in the apartment building next to ours) were blasting Biggie, not a big deal but hard to get your mind to be quiet with that going on. Started to wake up at 6 30 with my alarm but knew that I set three others at 15 minute intervals and decided 7 sounded much better...still hard to get out of bed. But I got up and made it on the train by 7 40, great day for a walk/run this morning, perfectly overcast and a bit windy which is a definite motivator in the summer. I finished the 4 miles in about 40 minutes, a good bit longer than normal but I felt much stronger when I ran, it felt good.


              3 strips of bacon (cast iron in oven)
              2 fried eggs (cast iron in bacon grease/stovetop)
              1 Large handful of kale (cast iron in bacon grease/stovetop) <---delicious! I am never going back to normal skillet and EVOO
              2 slices of heirloom tomato

              1 cup of decaf coffee from french press 1/2 of it almond milk for sweetening
              Large SmartWater

              Showered. Then headed to the Brooklyn Botanical Garden. Oh my goodness, this place is magical, if you are ever in NYC I highly recommend coming over here and checking it out. Truly worth it and on Tuesdays from 10am-Noon it's FREE! My roommate and I spent hours in there exploring and so excited over all of the fruits, vegetables, and incredible herbs growing everywhere! Of course we stopped and had a little primal snack while sitting near a "babbling brook" (manmade, hah)
              1/2 cup of almonds and water. By time we got back home we were both starving so we made a quick strawberry, banana, and almond milk smoothie to share then headed down the street to pick up some produce from a west indian grocery. Why have I never done that before?! I got 2 giant white sweet potatoes, 2 plantains, blackberries, a hunk of ginger, and a red and green pepper all for $5.60. I felt the need to run back home as if I had robbed the place!

              A healthy portion of both kale and arugula
              1/2 Heirloom tomato
              1/3 red pepper
              1/2 White sweet potato (sauteed in EVOO stovetop)
              Cucumber slices

              Pinches of: Pepper, Basil, Thyme, Cayenne Pepper

              "Dressing": Squeeze of Lemon Juice, Balsamic Vinegar, EVOO

              After this 3pm lunch I was ready to get a nap in but once I laid down I found myself reading a lot and unable to actually put anything down long enough to try, probably best that I didn't so that I am able to sleep easier tonight. I got up and snacked on chocolate...darn chocolate. I ate the rest so now I am out. :/ My stomach hurt for the next couple of hours and I am not sure if it was the chocolate or all of the almonds iv'e been eating lately or it could be the 6 days without grains!? When my roommate got back home she made me some hot water, lemon, and ginger "tea" which helped a whole lot! So I went up on the roof at twilight and did a little flow yoga.


              1 bowl of leftover roasted chicken soup.
              Frozen mango and a borrowed square of chocolate ha

              I'm feeling hungry...but I don't want to eat anymore fruit or nuts. Definitely need to make some kale, sweet potato, or some other sort of chips soon for snacking moments... I am a terrible habitual snacker, especially with sweets. It's only day 2, just gotta power through and watch these nasty little habits change! Goodnight!


              • #8
                Day 3... I just woke is 11 45 am here and I went to bed at midnight. Once again, that is A LOT of sleep and when I do wake up I am still exhausted. What is going on? I don't think it is the Grave's disease, this is not a symptom and the sleep issue I have struggled with on that is severe insomnia. This is the most tired I have been in years. Is my body just catching up? Is it the lack of the enormous amounts of grains I was eating? I know I am eating enough because even last night after I posted I went to the kitchen and got a second helping of dinner which was packed with protein.

                I hate sleeping this much! I intended to do my four miles and now it is too late and too hot here for me to handle.


                • #9
                  Day 3 (Cont...)

                  Well, it's that time of night, put the food away cleaned the kitchen and getting ready for bed.

                  Around 2pm today I had:

                  2 slices of bacon (baked in cast iron)
                  2 fried eggs (in cast iron on stove)
                  1 heaping handful of kale (in bacon grease/cast iron)
                  several slices of cucumber
                  1/2 a navel orange

                  1/2 decaf coffee 1/2 cup of almond milk (for sweetening purposes)
                  Large water

                  Fast forward a couple of hours and I am back in the kitchen munching on almonds and blending up one of my smoothie packs.
                  More water.

                  Then my roommates and I headed to Whole Foods to get lots of delicious Paleo/ Primal friendly foods. While there I introduced Jennifer to the Raw/ Gluten free/ Vegan aisle where they keep all the expensive "snack" type food. She freaked (she is struggling a bit with the whole diet change, really craving things and feeling hungry) and bought the brand: go raw: 100% Organic chocolate super cookies. We each had five. They contain: Organic coconut, sprouted organic sesame seeds, organic dates, and organic cacao. They are pretty good, wafer type things but I probably would never buy them for myself as they are very expensive and I would rather make something.
                  I spent a loooong time in the multiple aisles of chocolate trying to find the darkest and simultaneously cheapest chocolate I could. I settled on Whole Foods chocolate that they make and "chunk" themselves. For $4 I got a big hunk of 99% dark baking chocolate. We also got ingredients to make Teresa Cutter's Paleo Pumkin Bread tomorrow and stuff to make sweet potato, kale, and plantain chips. Here's the recipe for Teresa's bread which I look forward to trying:
                  Paleo Pumpkin Bread : The Healthy Chef – Teresa Cutter
                  I know it's not very Whole30 friendly and maybe I am not following the Whole30 to a T but this is my first giving this whole lifestyle change a go and so far I think I am doing a pretty good job. We are all on a pretty big budget around here and finding it hard to buy all the meat we would like to so the "bread" and "chips" are for substance purposes. If anyone has any ideas on how to do it better I am all ears though! I plan on intermittently doing Whole30's throughout the year so I know this will become less and less of a challenge for me.


                  Leftover garlic and kale stuffed pork tenderloin
                  carrots and broccoli steamed and then sauteed in coconut oil with a splash of balsamic vinaigrette

                  1 Heaping spoonful of Almond Butter and some of the super dark chocolate (practically tasteless in terms of sweetness but very rich and chalky) I think it will be a good filler or something I can melt for fruit or nuts.
                  A couple of frozen mango slices and two specific hah

                  Attempting to wake up and get going by 7am. Goodnight!


                  • #10
                    Hey great log, and looks like it will be updated regularly.

                    It looks like you have a handle on your medical condition and its great thats its not going to be a crutch or stumbling block for you (too many people I try and work with come up with too many reasons not to do what will help them b/c its hard).

                    On the diet side of things. I obviously dont know your goals, height, weight etc (nor is it my business to ask) but it doesnt seem that you are eating enough. The sleeping could be a sign of lack of food.

                    Get a good omelette in you first thing. I eat streakt bacon, and could easily eat 8-10 slices without blinking (and I cant eat alot on one go). This morning I mixed 3 whole eggs with milk, salt/pepper and some basil into a bowl. A littel oil in the pan and made a great omelette. Then dressed half of it with goats cheese, and strwberries (I was in a rush), folded it over and away I went.

                    Iv done this with goats cheese, 6 rashers of streaky bacon, grapes cut in half, strawberries cut into quarters and rasperries. it looks like a omelette calzone and tastes soooo good.
                    I also recommend honey and lemon as a hot drink in the AM. It will wake up your metabolism, brain and therefore wake you up. This comes from the honey. It will satisfy any suger cravings. The lemon is great for your stomach. If you want to know the benifits of this underrated wee fruit google it and you will be shocked at how good it is for you.

                    Im not recommending you start routinely sucking on lemons, but its a yummy drink that is better for you than people think.

                    It isn't the mountains ahead that wear you out....Its the grain of sand in your shoe.


                    • #11
                      Richard- Thank you so much for your kind response. I hadn't posted height, weight or anything because my goal is not to gain or necessarily lose any weight. I am 5'11" and have generally been between 115-130 pounds fluctuating over the past 4 years. Right now I am 132 which is the most average weight for my height I have ever been. In March I was 120, the issue for me is that I gained that 12 pounds due to drinking heavily everyday and also by binge eating things like doughnuts (my favorite), pizza, doritos, snickers, etc. This weight is good but I would rather gain it in a healthy way.

                      This morning I tried something different and made a frittata for the first time. I used broccoli, zucchini, red peppers, garlic, heirloom tomatoes and...eggs (obviously) but specifically 4. I split this with my roommate so I ate about half maybe a little more with 3 slices of bacon and half orange. Also 1/2 decaf and 1/2 almond milk coffee.

                      I don't eat any dairy although I am sure cheese would be a great filler. Hopefully my roommate and I get our dream jobs soon and are able to buy tons and tons of different meats! We have a whole wish list of primal friendly items we hope to be able to buy one day and more bacon is definitely at the top of the list.

                      Thank you for your lemon suggestion, I will be giving that a try tomorrow morning!


                      • #12
                        Your welcome. When I work a night shift I was having a couple of cups of T during the 12 hours. Now Its one cup and one or two honey and lemons. Keeps me awake and is yummy (if you get the quantities of honey and lemon right).

                        At 5'11 even 130 is not heavy at all. Gaining 12 pounds due to alcohol is not bad at all. Ahhhh the student days. I dont drink anymore (the occasional glass of wine, but its so few and far between that I dont even count it) but thinking back to about 2-3 years ago Id kill myself if I tried to keep up with a 24-25 year old me.

                        Yeh eating primal/paleo isnt always the cheapest. If you still like a drink (only on special occassions of course), go to 'seasidekitchen' OR 'cave girl in the kitchen' The seaside kitchen site has paleo cocktails.

                        It isn't the mountains ahead that wear you out....Its the grain of sand in your shoe.


                        • #13
                          Oh my my my what a day Day 4 has been.

                          Debated not going on a date with a man due to being new to this lifestyle and "scared" to go out to eat. Especially with someone who I have not eaten with before...didn't want to run him off but he was very understanding and tried to find us a place that would be okay for me. There was a lot of "Oh! They have this" and me saying that's great but now I can't have "that" because it has "this". We finally settled at some cuban place where I ate:

                          Yuca frites with garlic tomatillo dipping sauce (yes, the yuca frites came out fried...i guess i should have realized that but for some absent-minded reason I thought they would be baked) So I have definitely messed up my 30 but I will keep going anyways, at that point I didn't have it in me to send them back and make a big deal about it. Yes, they were delicious.

                          I also had a side of grapefruit.

                          After that, I came home and made Paleo Pumpkin bread which took like 3 hrs but is so totally worth it but bad at the same time because it is still bread... I was upset about earlier and ended up eating apples, that bread with honey, and almond butter for DINNER. I have the worst headache and no one to blame but myself. So now what... has anyone else fallen off that hard? I feel like a phony and like I have a total lack of with my head!


                          • #14
                            I'm also 22!

                            Isn't it nice to be young and know about primal living? I'm so grateful for all this info.

                            Take care!


                            • #15
                              Date 2? A chance to convert someone?

                              I made banana bread. I thought it was ok b/c I used almond flour. Yes/No?

                              It isn't the mountains ahead that wear you out....Its the grain of sand in your shoe.