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My little n=1 experiment (sharoninboulder)

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  • My little n=1 experiment (sharoninboulder)

    Spent a lot of time reading PB, Peter Attia's Eating Academy, Phinney & Volek, and a bunch of Paleo folks. They nearly had me convinced I could eat more carbs. Ah, not so much. So, I start this journal by going VLC. I read Attia's experience "curing" his insulin resistance. It's hard for me to know if I am insulin resistant, since I haven't had the tests to prove it so. But, the signs are there. I have pre-hypertension, have had it for nearly 20 years. 20 years ago, at the age of 32, my triglycerides were 144 (I know, not all that high), my HDL was 49, and I was eating a diet that was HC/LF. I continued to eat HC/LF until about 1 1/2 years ago when I discovered LC/Primal/Paleo. I did it mostly because my blood pressure kept creeping up. For a while, I was on an ACE inhibitor. Then it crept up and we added a diuretic. About 4 years ago, my blood pressure again went up to 130/85, even with the med's, so my doc doubled the dose. Gave me the same-old same-old advice: eat less fat, stay away from the saturated fat, exercise more. I always laugh when I get the "exercise more" line. I don't exercise as much as my husband - he's just a freak. But, I can hike 10 miles. I can ride my bike 50 miles, over mountain passes in Colorado. I exercise more than most (though I live in Boulder, Colorado so I just appear to be a couch potato by comparison) I'm not buying this exercise more line. Because it doesn't work!

    I knew that if the trend on my blood pressure continued, I was going to be adding drugs on drugs. I couldn't ignore it; my dad had his heart replumbed at 65 after years of hypertension. Nothing my doctor had said had helped to actually reverse the trend. Probably hurt! I figured what did I have to lose by shaking up my whole diet? I started LC/mostly Primal about 1 1/2 years ago. Since then I have reduced my blood pressure med's by 1/2 and my pressure is running 115/75. My weight has come down about 10 lbs, from 157 at a high to 147 now. My HDL went up to 61 after being stuck at 54 for years! My tri's are now around 50. Alas, I still have another 10 pounds to lose and I would love, love, love to ditch the blood pressure meds entirely.

    Have now stalled in both those goals for way too long. My weight had gotten as low as 143 last year when I trained for a half-marathon but that's largely unsustainable as an exercise program for me. The answer lies in the diet, I have determined. Reading Attia's story about going ketogenic, I thought hmmm. Might be worth a shot. And, here I am giving it a go. Don't know until you try. Going to be an interesting road with the holidays coming up. I've found that other people really hate when you decide to adopt a diet that isn't what they eat. And, I'm a chef who bakes a mean dessert, so it's just expected that I will eat what I make.

    Here are the stats du jour:

    51 year old female. 147 pounds. 5' 3" tall. Body fat? No idea. The calculators say 32.8% which I find laughable. Some day I'll get my DEXA scan and have the real answer.

    Some things I've learned and questions to be answered:
    • According to Dr. Phinney, eating too much carb in one day will knock you out of ketosis and it takes a while to get back
    • If ketosis is a possible answer for burning up body fat, I never spent enough time in it to make a big difference
    • Once I reach my goal weight, is it necessary to stay in ketosis or can I relax somewhat? Well, won't answer that question until I get there.

  • #2
    Sifting through the EAT MOAR FAT thread, found a great suggestion at breakfast: use more yolks. I now make my scrambled eggs with 2 whole eggs and one yolk. My dog really likes this plan too, as she gets that egg white I don't eat!

    3 days on VLC and say bye-bye to water. My weight is down to 144.

    Challenge tonight - neighborhood party. I'm bringing cauliflower gratin which is full of cheddar and sour cream. Yum! The other food will be the challenging part! Though at the moment, I have almost no voice, so I may not stay very long.

    I think I will head out for a walk with the dog today. I would like a hike but this sore throat/laryngitis is wearing me down.

    No walk. Rode the bike to buy groceries. Was pretty whooped after that and still didn't have a voice. I skipped the party, which made it really easy to avoid all the scary food.
    Last edited by sharoninboulder; 11-04-2012, 10:29 PM.


    • #3
      Feeling better today. The sore throat is gone and I can talk! OK, maybe others don't appreciate that as much.

      Felt good enough to do a few hill repeats. Those are just wicked. Cruel and wicked. Since I recently dumped the carbs, I can't say that I did any better than the last time. It's just a painful experience, no doubt about it!

      I decided that the one thing I am terrible at is sprinting. Just awful. I can hike 12 miles up and down over mountains at elevations over 10,000 ft. I can ride my bike 30 miles without any trouble. Though I am s..l..o..w going uphill. Gravity is a bitch, I tell you. The more you weigh, the more you have to haul up the hill. Anywho, even if the sprints don't bring about weight loss, they will improve my aerobic conditioning. In the past when I have added sprints to my cycling workouts, it has definitely improved my uphill riding, though it is one painful process.

      I have been tracking my food, though the numbers are approximate. I hate weighing food but I am pretty good at eyeballing stuff. Comes from working in kitchens. Here the numbers:

      Wed 10/31: 1984 kcal, 76/9/15 F/C/P
      Th 11/1: 1932 kcal, 73/9/19
      Fri 11/2: 1860 kcal, 67/10/17 + one glass of white wine
      Sat 11/3: 1988 kcal, 71/7/17 + one glass of red wine
      Sun 11/4: 1635 kcal, 59/23/12 + one glass of red wine

      Today wasn't as good because I just didn't eat much. I pretty much skipped lunch because after my sprints, I wasn't really hungry. Just waited for dinner to roll around. I should really figure out if wine is a no-no. I only drink 1 glass and it's always dry wine.


      • #4
        Massage day today. Ahhhh. Deep tissue to really fix all those aches and pains.

        Mellow day except for having to listen to my sister speak absolute gibberish. Thankfully, the massage came after having to talk to her. I'm still trying to figure out this time change thing. Boy, I'm sure glad I don't need to get up early.

        Walked the dog to the bank. It was a lovely day here in the great state of Colorado. I had a flock of cedar waxwings visit my yard and I saw a sharp-shinned hawk on the dog walk. Love, love, love nature.

        2031 kcal, 69/5/21, one glass of wine

        Tad high on calories but I think I overestimated a few things. I really do hate tracking food. It's just not natural! I figure a few more days and then stop, since after a week, I'm pretty clear on where the calories are coming from and totally bored with the actual tracking thing.


        • #5
          Another beautiful day here in Colorado. Went for a run, about 3 miles. No real sprints but a few surges in there up the hills. Good run.

          Went out to lunch. Resisted noodle kugel and potato latkes. Even though the chopped liver was definitely below par. Which is why my calorie number is a bit low. I'll make up for it tomorrow.

          And though I am celebrating the re-election of Obama, no bubbly this election.

          1429 kcal 63/10/27.


          • #6
            Snowing today. Cold and gray. sharon will rest today. Yesterday I went for a short but spirited ride with some new cycling pals. On Thurs, I rode downtown then up the canyon. It's not a long ride, but it's got some uphill, some on dirt so it's a decent workout. May be awhile before I get to do that one again.

            Eating is going well. Except for last night. Didn't overeat but some questionable things. Had folks for dinner to test out a recipe for my cooking class next week. We also had a wee bit of ice cream. Well, I had a wee bit.

            Tonight, we're going out to dinner with friends. Should be able to stay on the straight and narrow. Pork belly and duck confit on the menu! Yum!

            Read a really interesting post on Whole Health Source (Whole Health Source: Why Do We Eat? A Neurobiological Perspective. Part III). Interesting theory on why people end up at a higher setpoint. My experience has been similar, though my overeating doesn't sync up with the holidays. I definitely ate more when I was pregnant. At least after the first 3 months. I ate nearly nothing in the first trimester due to morning (and afternoon sickness). I think I actually lost a couple of pounds. I made up for it over the next 6 months. But, I didn't gain more weight than my doctor said would be ok. I just gained it all in a fairly short period of time. Hey, when you don't want to eat for 4 months, wanting to eat again is awesome! When I tried to slim down again after my daughter was born, it was a bitch. Even with breast-feeding. I did lose much of the weight but never got back to pre-pregnancy until my daughter was 5. I finally got there when I went to culinary school (I know that makes no sense to most folks) because for some reason I lost a lot of my appetite. I ate very little (but well!) for 18 months and got down as low as I have been in a very long time. Eventually, my appetite came back and my weight started creeping up. It really came back up after going back to a desk job for 4 years. With some very serious cycling (during training season, averaged 120 miles per week, with at least 1 50+ ride every week), my weight drifted down to 140ish. And, that was with terrible eating. Unfortunately, cycling season does not go year round in Colorado and it drifted back up again, as high as 155. Too high! Blood pressure started climbing too. Went low-carb, came down to 148 rather easily. Went mostly Primal. Got a bit more regular with the exercise (cycling, hiking, running, skiing) and now it's down to 144-145. It's winter when exercise really goes out the window, but I'm bound and determined not to let that happen this year. Also, not to let exercise become my excuse to eat whatever I please. When you ride a century, you burn about 4000 calories, so you kind of convince yourself you can eat anything you want. You probably CAN eat anything you want immediately afterward and I certainly want to eat everything in sight for a couple of days. My goodness, I was starving after those efforts. But, I need to dial it back when those extreme efforts stop and it's a lot of off-season maintenance training.