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Primal Journal ( _sarah_ )

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  • Primal Journal ( _sarah_ )

    Hi guys

    This is my second try at keeping a primal journal. I was keeping one up until a few months ago, and found it quite helpful to have a written record of what I've been doing, as well as for the added accountability. I also found, though, that my posts got long-winded (and often whingingly introspective), which was time-consuming to write, annoying even for ME to read back, and ultimately got me a little concerned about how readily identifiable I was through my journal.

    So. This time around, I'll be keeping a pretty brief log of how I'm going with the PB. I don't really mind if anyone reads it or not, but having it out there will be one more motivation to keep on track.

    This is where I'm starting from:

    I'm 22, female. Primal (to varying degrees of strictness) since November 2011. It works for me. I'm not the best at sticking to it 100%, but when I'm good, I feel good, and I see quick, awesome results. I'm not trying to lose much weight, just to optimise my health, up my energy - and yes, look a little better.

    Weight as of today: 61.9kg (136 pounds).
    Height: 177/178ish cm, or around 5'9"/5'10"ish (I think - haven't been measured in a while, and not sure of the conversion)
    BMI based on those measurements: 19.6

    Hip: 33"; Waist: 27"; Chest: 34".

    Blood pressure - consistently fine - if anything a little low.
    Blood panel - perfect. (yay!)

    My stats are not too bad, and I'm under no anorexic illusions that 'OMG, I need to lose moar weight!'. I would like to lose a teeny bit, though - I'm naturally (luckily, I know) quite skinny-figured, and with my previous primal experiences, I find that my sweet spot is around 58kg or so.

    I hit 58 when I stay around 80/20 primal and exercise regularly, so I'd say that's pretty much the ideal for me (although if I added muscle weight to that, I wouldn't complain!). If I slack on the diet and exercise, I tend to head back up and hover around 62 or so, which I do not love: I look flabby and I feel flabby. If I'm super-strict with primal, plus exercise, I actually shoot down to lower than I want to go - 55kg or so, which is getting pretty damn skinny for my height.

    So: goal is a healthy, energetic, 58kg or thereabouts.

    Dietary goals: eat cleaner, stick to my 80/20, or even more if I can. Lose the taste for junk food that sees me binge at weak moments....and then keep binging for days.

    Exercise goals: ride my bike less sporadically. Hit my LHT workout three times EVERY week, not just quiet weeks. Yoga most days, mix some sprints in sometimes.

    Lifestyle goals: Be energetic enough to make the absolute most of now - a very busy, but incredibly exciting, enjoyable and rewarding time of my life.

    I hope to post daily, or nearly daily - probably just brief logs of what I ate/exercise I did, as well as a note of whether I made the best of the day overall.

    So, guess the forum will be hearing from me soon

  • #2
    First day of my journal. First day of September, first day of spring. A good time to be recommitting and refocusing. So:

    Today's food:

    Lunch (12.30): salad. Chicken, tomato, cucumber, carrot, onion, avocado, capsicum. Mayo and sweet onion sauce. (Both store bought. Wrist slap.)

    Snacks: big handful each of dates and of currants. Some salami slices. Offcut corner of a vanilla slice my boss was baking (tsk tsk, I know, but it was a small corner, and you know - don't want to say no when the boss offers me food).

    Dinner (7.30): chicken, zucchini, and squash, cooked with lemon, olive oil, coconut milk and a sprinkle of cheese. Cup of tea.

    Today's exercise:

    30 min "core" class - what it sounds like. Fitness class full of planks, crunches, death marches and so on.
    90 min yoga class - bliss

    ~10km on the bike: home to uni to work and back again.
    5.5 hours on my feet at work.


    Got up pretty early and went to gym even though I so, so didn't want to. Filled out a long application I've been procrastinating forever. Played some lovely music and enjoyed cooking dinner. Generally pretty focused. If I can finish the last few things on my to-do list tonight, pretty much a gold star day


    • #3
      Day Two.

      To start with, downgrade yesterday to a silver star day. Housemate came home shortly after I wrote that, with friends, and the ensuing noise, and rage about the noise, ensured I didn't finish the last few things on my list.

      But, today:


      Breakfast (8.30ish) - couple of strawberries and dates at the markets. Banana for speed breakfast on the way to work. Bad start - too much sugar, carbs, no protein. But, could be worse. It''s not cereal.

      Lunch (2.30ish) - two eggs scrambled with remains of last night's coconut chicken. Salad - lettuce, tomato, cucumber, capsicum, avocado, lemon juice. Was really gross for some reason. Some strawberries and a few teaspoons of greek yoghurt. Three milk chocolate fingers.

      Dinner - not really hungry. Mixed a few spoons of protein powder in with some more greek yoghurt after my sprints.

      Today's exercise:

      Yep, sprints. 12x15 seconds, all out, mixed with rests. First sprints in a while, so I was surprised at how fast I was! Good stuff.


      Did a great job at work today. Did a good job on a writeup that needed finishing, and which I'm really glad to have submitted. Resisted a lot of temptation to eat junk at work (in a bakery). Enjoyed some nature time during my sprints - gorgeous stars tonight went to the markets. on the downside: Gave in to that chocolate at lunch. Dragged myself out of bed instead of bouncing. Watched a few hours of tv when I should have been working. Consequently, not going to bed early because I still have stuff to do.

      Catch you tomorrow


      • #4
        Day Three.

        Today's food.

        Breakfast (7.30) - two poached eggs. Black coffee.

        Snack (10.00) - three chocolate fingers AGAIN. I was starving, and had only a voucher to the lolly shop, no money. Big fail. Also, maybe a hint that I should eat more than two eggs when I eat breakfast.

        Lunch (2.30ish) - delicious, delicious salad. Lettuce, tomato, cucumber, capsicum, bacon, seaweed, mushroom, tuna, olive oil and a squirt of barbecue sauce. Did I say delicious? Also, some slices of salami. Plus, because this is an honesty journal, six marshmallows and two spoons of raw muffin dough. Yep, food fails were all over the place today.

        Dinner (9.00) - again, not so hungry after a big lunch, so a ramekin full of greek yoghurt with a few spoonfuls of protein powder mixed through. Two strawberries.

        Today's exercise.

        On my feet at work 12.30-8, but nothing formal. Was going for a rest day, but in the end wasn't as sore as I expected to be after first sprints in a while. So, could've done something - but rest won't hurt.


        Wins: Went to class. Did an assignment start to finish in three hours - super focused, and I nailed it! Went to work and didn't hate it even though fourth day in a row. Resisted most temptation to eat bakery foods (except muffin mix, noted above). Gave outstanding customer service all day. Sent a bunch of emails I've been putting off in dread. Had no iphone on the bus ride home so I looked out the window and soaked up the full, incredible complexity of our amazing city - joy. Now, rare, amazing lazy night - gonna read a book, maybe watch some excellent tv, and go to bed early.

        Fails: Snoozed alarm for TWO HOURS before I got out of bed at 7. Consequently, missed online submission for a small assessment piece (only 0.07% of overall mark, but still not pleased). Made conscious decision to walk into the lolly shop and buy that chocolate. Gave into sugar at work as well. Being antisocial and hiding from my housemate tonight.



        • #5
          Day Four.

          Today's food.

          Breakfast (5.30am) - two poached eggs. Black coffee. Fish oil.

          Snack (9.00) - a banana, on the way out of my weights workout.

          Lunch (12.00) - salad with tuna, lettuce, avocado, olive oil, tomato, cucumber and capsicum. Two chocolate fingers. Two espressos. Also, plenty of water throughout the day.

          Dinner (7.00) - three eggs scrambled with chicken, ghee, spinach and a pinch of cheese. Some strawberries.

          Ahem (5.00pm - v. late) - MORE chocolate, plus jelly lollies, to fuel a late night assignment smashing binge.

          Now, let me anticipate anyone who may have happened across this post and, even now, be thinking to themselves 'Tsk! If you're TRULY primal, there's no excuse for resorting to junk food....if I found myself without real food, I would simply IF for eight straight days with no loss of energy. And working late into the night! How can high quality sleep not be everyone's top priority?!'

          ...I know. Unfortunately, my lifestyle remains a work-in-progress, so feel free to use me as fuel for your primal superiority complex and move right along. I am most likely starting new job on Thursday - a fantastic, fantaasssstic, position, but an unexpected one - so it behoves me to get a LOT of work done before then. Clutch your pearls - I might even have an energy drink tonight.

          Today's exercise.

          1 hour Body Balance class - yoga blended with pilates blended with tai chi and set to music.
          1 hour in the weights gym - total body workout, mixing bodyweight exercises with free weights and the odd machine. I'll write down the details of my weights routine another time.
          5km on the bike - possibly another 5km home, if I don't end up sleeping in the lab tonight :/


          Wins: Woke up on time, full of energy - my dream come true! Had a really good session at the gym. Got just the right amount of sun. Meals were ok, in themselves. Had a friendly chat to my housemate instead of avoiding her at all costs. Attended watershed political rally (briefly). Cheered up my sister during a rough time.

          Fails: Junk food binge, obviously. Having a late night. Totally unfocused all afternoon despite urgent need to work --> night will be later than it needs to be. Probably one million other things - hasn't been a winning day for my lifestyle.

          But, tomorrow's another day!


          • #6
            Hi! Welcome! And Congratulations on the new job!

            Don't worry too much about the junk food binge... It happens! It's what you do tomorrow that matters really. As Pumba the Warthog said in The Lion King, "You gotta put your behind in the past!"
            Height: 5' 10"
            Highest Weight: 292
            Recent Starting Weight 287
            Current weight: 244.0
            Goal weight: 195
            Body Fat 32.5%


            • #7
              Hi Sarah

              You were never "whingingly introspective "in your posts. Perhaps I was in your face too much. It won't happen again.

              Last edited by Ezestreets; 09-09-2012, 05:31 PM.


              • #8
                Haha, hello again Dan No, you weren't "in my face" too much - it was always nice to get a comment. I just read back over my journal after a bit of a hiatus, and didn't really like what I'd put out there. Hence the new start!

                Although, obviously, the new start has been a slow one - no posts for a few days. Start of the new job has meant a busy time (and a few not-so-great primal choices, ahem)!
                But, as DCarr very rightly points out (thanks for the hello, by the way), gotta put the behind in the past, and now that things have settled back down a little, so should the eating routine, and journalling routine.

                Thus, Wednesday 12th:

                Today's food:

                Breakfast (8.00) - about a cup of leftover curry from last night (butter chicken, so chicken, tomatoes, cream, spices etc), with rice.

                Lunch (2.00) - Snickers bar. Yes, I am a bad person in every way.

                Snacks (4-6.30 - nannying time) - a few tiny bites of things as I fed the kids: some sausage, peas, a few biscuits, a corner of cake. Black coffee.

                Dinner (7.00) - chicken salad with capsicum, tomato, cucumber, lettuce, lemon. Lemon and ginger tea.

                Today's exercise: Nada. Although I did take my bike to be repaired after some idiot knocked it about, so I took a STEP toward exercise.


                Wins: got my first good night's sleep in ages last night - and GOD it was good. Relaxed all day afterward. Paid bills, did banking, went to boring classes. Took bike in. Resisted weekly temptation to quit nannying ratty kids. Resisted temptation to get takeaway dinner. Going to call my grandmas and do some work preparatory to tomorrow, then get an early night. Cleaned room. Cleaned out fridge. Was HAPPY today, which has been a bit too scarce lately. Took some time out to soak in and enjoy the gorgeous spring sun.

                Fails: Not endlessly patient with nanny kids, who really pushed it today. Ate biscuits, snickers bar, rice. Spaced out a lot in boring philosophy lecture. Still far too consumed by hating my housemate. Went out with idiot hairstyle due to bad time management.

                But tomorrow's another day, and I'm feeling positive.

                Side note: loved the 'Starting from zero' post today - very encouraging. Side-side note: Dan! How have you been?? How's everything working out for you?


                • #9
                  Good morning Sarah

                  I'd like to add my congratulations on getting the new job. A primal/Paleo girl working in a bakery is kind of like hiring a fox to guard the hen house. Way too much temptation. I hope the new job (I infer from your posts that it is a nanny position) will allow enough time for your studies. Is your major still physics?

                  I am sitting on the deck of a vacation cottage on Vancouver Island. (Quagle Cottage - Oceanfront Cottage Near Parksville, Qualicum and Nanaimo on Vancouver Island). Take a virtual tour. It is paradise, and very relaxing. I go back to work a week from now, and then retire at the end of the month. I gave notice because I couldn't stand my boss any more. I still intend to work though -but I not sure where. Anywhere but insurance.

                  In Canada I'm officially old now (65). Staring into the abyss of retirement is quite scary. My financial planner tells me that we will be fine, but I still have a knot in the pit of my stomach.

                  I am still circling the MDA Paleo/primal lifestyle. I've also looked at whole 30, and the Non Nom Paleo website. The science makes total sense, but the effort required for meal preparation looks huge and I am not sure I can handle it. My bride (of 43 yrs) is not well, so it falls to me. Old age is not kind, and I know that I have to get a grip.

                  Way too much about me. This is your journal, so I will sit back in the weeds and enjoy hearing about your journey. My very best wishes. Hope you can shake off the room mate. He/she sounds like a real downer.




                  • #10
                    Long time no posts, but I had an amusing primal moment today that I thought I'd share.

                    I prefer to go barefoot, and usually do whenever I can. In my day-to-day life I wear zero-drop shoes, and I also have some zero-drop shoes for work, where I'm standing all day.

                    However, too stingy to buy vibrams, I've still been wearing my big ol' Adidas athletic shoes to the gym. It's not like I'm on my feet on the treadmill, I've been reasoning: I'm just in the weights room, and doing a variety of movements pretty much on the spot. Can't make that much difference - plus, the firm soles are better for cycling to and from the gym!

                    So it has gone over the past few months. And over the past few months, I have also noticed the odd twinge of knee pain. It's normally when I'm at/after the gym, or after cycling, so I chalked it up to poor technique.

                    For months, I have been maniacally staring at myself in the mirror during squats and lunges and such - monitoring every knee bend. For months, I've been googling exercise techniques to protect the knees. For months, I've been adjusting my bike, trying to find the most knee-friendly seat alignment.

                    And then today, I forgot my normal work shoes, and had to wear my big trainers to work. Zing. Within an hour of just standing in those things, I was suffering my familiar "bike/lunge-induced" ache. Facepalm.

                    I can sense some vibrams in my near future.