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David's Primal Journal - it's harder in here rainy England than in Malibu!

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  • David's Primal Journal - it's harder in here rainy England than in Malibu!

    Hi everyone, I thought that I would start a PB Journal here to tap into the great energy and support I have seen on these boards – hopefully to help me progress as I feel like I’ve hit a bit of a wall.

    So a bit (well quite a lot) of background:

    I’m a 44 year old male, 6’foot tall and currently weighing about 96kg (211lbs). Up until I was in my early 30’s I was very physically active in the military and can state with some confidence that at my optimum weight at physical peak is 86 kg – this was the weight I was at when I undertook Special Forces selection, although this optimum goes against some of the scores I will describe below.

    Anyway, usual story upon exiting the army – I still ate like a horse with few of the physical demands, thus I ballooned some what. I was working in an office job trying to establish a second career working late nights and weekends and eating pretty poorly if I am honest. By 2005 I was up to about 115kg (253lbs) and realise enough was enough. I put time aside for exercise – mostly gym cardio machines and went on Atkins, but not in a drastic way – more slow and steady. Within about I0 months I had dropped down to about 102kg was feeling better and went back to “life as normal”.

    Roll forward to 2011 and I am now married with 3 kids, running my own company and my lack of time to exercise is causing the ballooning to happen again - back up to 107kg. I was worried about yo-yo dieting so did some further research. I know that low-carbs works for my body type but was worried about the sustainability of Atkins in the long term. Anyway I started in February 2011 on the “4 hour body” – ie cutting out bread, pasta, potatoes and grains, but keeping in slow release carbs such as beans and legumes. I also started measuring results and in the first few months dropped 7kg which was very encouraging. I was also using one of those home scales that use bio-impedance to measure BF% (which I know are not super accurate):

    05/02/11 15/02/11 24/02/11 13/03/11 26/03/11 02/04/11 16/04/11
    Weight (kg) 107 104.1 102.8 103.6 101.4 101 99.8
    % Fat 42.60% 36.90% 40.40% 38.10% 39.70% 39.30% 38.80%

    But in late 2012 I began to start seeing lesser progress, partly because my compliance was slipping and I was eating more than the allowed 1 “cheat day” per week.

    04/03/2012 14/08/2012 15/08/2012 22/08/2012
    Weight (kg) 100.6 97.8 98.1 96.6
    % Fat 33.20% 37.70% 38.20% 35.90%

    It was about this time that I read Robb Wolf’s “Paleo Solution”, and Mark’s PB books, and they made a lot of sense to me – as it fitted quite well my own experience and body-type. Having been “low carbs” for 18 months, switching to PB was actually quite easy – dropped the weekly cheat meal (and did not beat myself up so much when I DID slip at family outings), stopped diet coke, stopped sugar in my coffee etc, put back in a bit more healthy full fat dairy.

    I will say that on PB I feel a whole lot better, with more energy and “Go” and am sleeping a lot better. Replacing carsio with strength training has also seen a good amount of body shape change, although with plenty of BF left to loose, I have not really dropped any weight at all since the change – hence I would really appreciate advice on what else to try. I would say that I am doing PB at about 90% compliance with only the occasional day of too much red wine. I feel I am probably “over eating” even while I am staying quite paleo, so maybe that might be the issue.

    I will post below the blood results I had done at the start of the change to PB, (which all look quite good to my untrained eye)

    I have also started doing a high intensity strength program “Body by Science” by Doug McGuff. This is a 1 set to failure weekly program using 5 compound exercise in super slow cadence. I have definitely seen good strength improvement in all major musculature areas. I have yet to incorporate any sprints into my training, mainly because I live in the UK and it has been tipping down rain for the last few months  but hope to start on this soon. In between weekly “to failure” sessions I do light daily exercise at home with lighter weights and pushups, pull ups etc.

    At the end of October I had a DEXA scan to really assess what’s going on. Turns out that after nearly two years of eating well and low carb, I am still at 26.6% bodyfat which means I am overweight, just shy of obese according to standard measures. Regional BF:
    Android 39.6%
    Gynoid 26.7%
    Arms: 17.2%
    Trunk: 34.0%
    Legs: 19.9%
    Total: 26.6%

    Bugger! I am generally quite a “big guy” – my 1 rep max bench press is at around 80kg (and increasing) and leg press 1 rep max around 220kg. As you can see legs and arms a quite low BF – I just cant seem to shift the middle! My aim is not to get to a specific weight, rather I would like to be health, strong and lean. If I could get all areas below 20% I’m sure I (and my wife) would be very happy.

    I’ll start posting daily dairies, but would appreciate any comments and feedback. Thanks!

  • #2
    Bloods all within normal range:

    Red Blood Cells
    Haemoglobin g/dL 13.8
    HCT 0.418
    Red Cell Count x10^12/L 4.61
    MCV fL 90.7
    MCH pg 29.9
    MCHC g/dL 33
    RDW 13.4
    White Blood Cells
    White Cell Count x10^9/L 5.32
    Neutrophilis x10^9/L 3.03
    Lymphocytes x10^9/L 1.76
    Monocytes x10^9/L 0.38
    Eosinophilis x10^9/L 0.13
    Basophilis x10^9/L 0.02
    Clotting Cells
    Platelet Count x10^9/L 195
    PMPV fL 12.1
    Inflamation Marker
    ESR mm/hr 18
    Kidney Function
    Sodium mmol/L 143
    Potassium mmol/L 3.4
    Chloride mmol/L 97
    Bicarbonate mmol/L 21
    Urea mmol/L 6.2
    Creatinine umol/L 99
    Liver Function
    Bilirubin umol/L 14
    Alkaline Phosphatese IU/L 50
    Aspartate Transferase IU/L 21
    Alanine Transferase IU/L 22
    CK IU/L 136
    Gamma GT IU/L 17
    Total Protein g/L 67
    Albumin g/L 46
    Globulin g/L 21
    Calcium mmol/L 2.34
    Corrected Calcium mmol/L 2.3
    Phosphate mmol/L 1.58
    Gout Test
    Uric Acid umol/L 440
    Diabetes Test
    Random Blood Glucose (FL) mmol/L 7.3
    Fasting Blood Glucose (FL) mmol/L 7.3
    Iron Profile
    Iron umol/L 21.3
    T.I.B.C. umol/L 43
    Transferrin Saturation % 50
    Lipid Profile
    Triglycerides mmol/L 0.7
    Cholesterol mmol/L 4.9
    HDL Cholesterol mmol/L 1.1
    LDL Cholesterol mmol/L 3.5
    Heart Disease Risk
    HDL % of total % 22.5
    Thyroid Test
    Free Thyroxine pmol/L 18.2


    • #3
      Oh, the reason I said that my "prime" weight at 86kg was at odds with the DEXA scan was because DEXA was saying that my lean weight was 68.4kg, so at 10% BF would only be 74.8Kg and at 15% it would be 78.6kg - both well short of the 86Kg mark. If I was (in my late 20's) at 10% BF at that time it would mean my lean weight was 78kg. Assuming bones, organs etc are unchanged, that would mean I have lost 10kg (22lbs) of muscle - now that seem a huge amount.


      • #4
        Ok, 1st day's journal. And being minful of having and audience I think I ate better that I have last week:

        Exercise: 50 x 20kg Kettlebell swings, 20 pushups.
        Water: 3litres
        • 3 Rashers Bacon, handful spinach, 8 cherry tomatoes (approx. 21.5g Protein, 262 kCal, 5.5g Carb, 17g Fat)
        • Black Coffee no sugar
        Snack: Protein Shake (52g Protein, 262kCal, 3g Carb, 2.25g Fat)
        • 250g Salad bowl no dressing (2.6g Protein, 62 kCal, 8.5g Carb, 1g Fat)
        • 480g Chicken breast (119g Protein, 552 kCal, 2g Carb, 6.8g Fat)
        • Black Coffee no sugar

        Snack: 140g turkey breast. (144 Kcal and 2g Carb)
        • Chicken salad (45g Protein, 320 kCal, 18g Carb, 5g Fat)
        • Black Coffee no sugar

        So roughly 1602 KCal and 39g Carb.
        Last edited by David_e_watt; 11-27-2012, 01:47 AM.


        • #5
          • 5 x 5 80Kg Squats
          • 1 x 5 60kg Deadlift
          • 5 x 5 unweighted dips
          • 5 x 5 30kg Bench press

          Water: 4litres

          • Omelette - 3 Rashers Bacon, 5 cherry tomatoes, 3 eggs, 2 mushrooms, 1 sm red onion (approx. 39g Protein, 421 kCal, 16g Carb, 32g Fat)
          • Black Coffee no sugar

          Snack: Protein Shake (52g Protein, 262kCal, 3g Carb, 2.25g Fat)

          • Large Chicken Salad (18g Protein,150 kCal, 18g Carb, 3g Fat)
          • Black Coffee no sugar

          • 240g Chicken Breast slices (60g Protein, 276kCal, 1g Carb, 3.5g Fat)
          • Black Coffee no sugar

          • 1.25 breast chicken (60g Protein, 276kCal, 1g Carb, 3.5g Fat)
          • Mixed roast vegetables (squash, celery, tomatoes, onion) (really approx. - 8g Protein, 200kCal, 32g Carb, 19g Fat)
          • “Bulletproof” Black Coffee no sugar, but with 1 Tbsp butter (0g Protein, 102kCal, 0g Carb, 11.5g Fat)… interesting taste – not tried it before. Seeing if the fat abates hunger as a possible breakfast replacement.

          Really quite sore from the strength training this morning – which is great.

          So approx. total kCalories 1670, 70g Carb, 240g Protein, 74g Fat.
          Last edited by David_e_watt; 11-27-2012, 03:10 PM.


          • #6
            Look like I am going a bit over the top on the old proteins. What does anyone think about

            15% Carb, 40% Protein, 45% Fat ratio? At target 1700 Cal per day that works out to be 63g Carb, 170g Protein, 85g Fat.


            10% Carb, 40% Protein, 50% fat = 42g Carb, 170g Protein, 94g Fat.
            Last edited by David_e_watt; 11-28-2012, 05:57 AM.


            • #7
              Actually I've just discovered SparkPeople to help track intake. Reviewing Tuesday 27th its closer to:
              1984 kCal
              90g Fat
              55g Carb
              237g protein


              It was adding in the small amount of olive oil that whacked up the calorie!
              Last edited by David_e_watt; 11-28-2012, 04:02 AM.


              • #8
                Revised 26th Nov using SparkPeople

                kCal 1686
                Fat 62g
                Carb 42g
                Protein 237g



                • #9
                  Wednesday 28th Nov

                  kCal 1919
                  Fat 122g
                  Carb 27g
                  Protein 183g

                  OK, so I went slightly over my target of 1600 Cal per day today, but still less than my BMR. I added in more fat to see what that does to my hunger levels, which resulted in lower carbs today. Better on the protein at 183g. Satiety was good, but if I can just ratchet down the fat a littole and still feel full it would be great. Even a few days of tracking more closely has helped me stop snacking a little and I feel quite good.

                  Wednesday 28Nov.pdf


                  • #10
                    Thursday 29 Nov

                    kCal 1769
                    Fat 137g
                    Carb 18g
                    Protein 91g

                    OK today I went a lot over on Fat and v.low on carbs and protein. Damn its hard to get the right balance! The extra dairy and coconut oil are the main cause, but it did keep me very full through the day and perhaps allowed the slight reduction in kCal since yesterday. Felling quite high energy today, and looking forward to the Gym on Saturday. The soreness from the squats has worn off and I feel like i could go back again tonight, but really trying to give the muscles time to build.

                    Thursday 29Nov.pdf