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Primal Journal - FireChick

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  • Primal Journal - FireChick

    I read the book, started the program, joined the forum so I might as well start the journal as well - lifestyle commitment right? I can't promise I'll be consistent, but it will be a good tool to track my progress and dedication to changing my life.

    I'm Jen, I live in Coto de Caza, CA with my husband, 3 kids and a German shepherd named Marley. I am a firefighter and commute to Las Vegas. I work crazy hours, as does my husband. We are both very unhappy with the quality of our lives and those of our children. We NEED a change - we must change our lives and find happiness, rather than the daily grind that is so prevalent in Americans.

    Reading The Primal Blueprint changed me. Cliche, I know, but we ARE the Krog family. My husband has a chronic condition - psoriatic arthritis - and takes medications to alleviate symptoms. I was the over-exercising cardio queen (albeit, I was half-marathon training and still doing weight resistance 2-3x/wk) but I was exhausted and moody with high/lows throughout the day. I have a broody 14 year old, and 3.5 yr old twins who are sick often. Reading that book enlightened me to make positive changes in the lives of our family.

    Background: Husband works 45 miles away, commutes twice a day (evening shift). I work 300 miles away and fly/drive to Vegas for 48 hour shifts, then I'm home 3.5 days on average. Our lives are hectic. Lots of stress, not much family time or play time. And crappy, zero-nutrition foods. Not fast food - but pretty close.

    Some changes I (well, we, but I'm not getting a whole lot of help here...) made:
    - Organic fruits and veggies (as many as possible) and veggie wash rather than rinsing
    - Organic, free-range, hormone-free chicken and eggs
    - Grass fed, hormone-free beef (hard to come by apparently...)
    - Gluten-free foods for the toddlers such as waffles, pancakes, pastas, corn tortillas, quinoa, wild rice - not the greatest but I'm trying to determine if the absence of gluten will alter some behavioral concerns in my son.

    With me being gone half the time and DH unwilling to feed gluten-free, veggies, etc (he's a hot dogs and hamburgers kind of guy) I need to be realistic and pick my battles. That said, IMO it would benefit him greatly to change his eating habits, kick the Coke habit (ahem, soda), and start light exercise. He is pretty inactive due to his disability, but I'm optimistic that if he would give it a chance he'd notice significant health improvements by changing his diet.

    - I switched to Primal Nutrition for my multi, Omegas, probiotics, and Vitamin D for me and the husband.
    - Kiddos: my teen is on a teen multi, twins on a toddler powder multi, probiotic and liquid Omegas.

    Here's the kicker - I'm not a cook. Yes, yes I work in a firehouse. And I'm a woman. But I have never cooked, and actually appreciate the label because it gets me out of cooking! But at home I am starting to research, shop for, prepare and cook meals for my kids that aren't chicken tenders, fries and broccoli. So we're experimenting with different meals that incorporate lots of veggies, good, lean meats and different variety of textures and tastes. My favorite thing I've done so far is to get a ton of different kinds of veggies: butternut squash, yellow squash, zucchini, broccoli, spinach, kale, brussel sprouts, red pepper, carrots and steam them all, then puree and freeze small containers. I can add them in to pasta sauce, ground meat, casseroles ... anywhere I can sneak them in so the kids get the nutrients but not the textures that they refuse to eat! (The extent of their vegetable palate is broccoli, carrots, corn.) Now, because I'm cooking different things they already seem to have a higher tolerance for "strange looking" foods.
    **If anyone has any helpful hints for me in regards to going primal with toddlers let me know!

    Another change I would like to focus on is slowing down my off time and enjoying my family - going for a walk or hike, playing in the yard, walking the dog, going to the park - something outdoors for fresh air and revitalization instead of sitting in front of the TV, running around cleaning up the house and doing laundry, or running errands. I can find a million things to keep me busy - a long list of "tasks" that need to be accomplished - but I'm realizing that most of them can wait, and I am much more fulfilled when surrounding myself with my kids and watching them watch the world.

    So, that's my very long introduction to my journal. My personal goal is to get into better shape (stronger and leaner!) lose 15 lbs body fat, feel more energetic, happier, and more positive... all to be able to handle stress in a healthier way!

    Height: 5'9"
    Age: 35
    Weight at start (12/30): 163
    Goal weight: 140
    Currently: 155.5

    Calories: ~1400-1900 depending on appetite
    Protein: 110 grams
    Carbs: 75 grams

    Yesterdays food:

    BF: 2 eggs, 2 egg whites with spinach, red pepper, basil, majoram, mushrooms
    3/4 c blackberries
    S: 1/6 c. dried cherries, .5 oz macadamia nuts, 2 tbsp shredded coconut, 24 dark chocolate-flavored almonds
    4 oz turkey jerky
    L: Scoop Muscle Milk w/ 1 cup coconut milk and 1/2 c frozen berries
    D: 5 oz roasted chicken breast (in olive oil, balsalmic, rosemary) and corresponding roasted veggie medley (1c)
    S: 2 glasses of red wine (I went out) and 3 squares TJ's Dark Chocolate bar

    Yesterdays Workout:
    Cardio: 5 min walk/job warmup
    5 min of 20 sec tabata sprints w/10 sec rest
    - 10 total sprints
    2 min walk
    10 sprints 9.5 mph treadmill for 30 seconds with 1 min walk or light jog in between
    3 minute cooldown
    Total: 30 min

    Circuit: 3 sets, 12 reps
    Jump rope x 50 reps
    DB 1 arm squat, snatch & press
    Hip hinges
    MB sit ups fast reps (25 reps)
    Jump lunges (20 total)
    Pushup position DB rows alt arms
    Prone swiss ball roll-outs

    Today's workout: none

    Today's food:
    BF: same as yesterday
    S: 2 rice cakes (my only grain indulgence) w/ 1/2c full fat cottage cheese and 2 tbsp almond butter
    L: none
    S: (moody) ~ 400 cal of dark chocolate (hand-slap cause I feel like garbage now!)
    D: None

    If you read all of this, thanks for taking the time!!

  • #2
    Welcome Firechick. You do have a challenge to do Primal. I hope it goes well. A few thoughts . . .

    Not sure that veggie wash is necessary, but not a problem.

    Maybe try non-grain waffles, pancakes, bread - e.g. made with almond or coconut flour.

    White rice is better in some ways than wild rice or quinoa. It is neutral in terms of damage to the digestive system. Potatoes and sweet potatoes are better than grains and most people like them. (I personally eat some organic white rice, organic traditional corn tortillas and organic white potatoes. Not really primal but not terrible.)

    Hamburgers are fine . . . without the bun. Is it possible to cook up some burger patties to have on hand for husband and get some glutten free buns? Good, natural sausages are better than wieners, but the latter are ok if good quality.

    Vitamin D is great, provided you get enough vitamin K2 (which most people do not) and vitamin A. Search MDA for more info.

    +1 to sneaking in the veggies.

    Are you trying to avoid saturated fat? (Egg whites, chicken breast, though I see you had full fat cottage cheese.) If you are, don't. Saturated fat is healthy. Your body needs it.

    Sprints - from what I have heard, you are doing more than you should. If you are doing ten 20 second sprints with 10 sec. rest, you are not doing them hard enough, IMHO. Twenty-thirty seconds to the point where you gasping for air followed by a minute and a half slow movement. Total of 8. Twice a week. That's all you need. I think you are over-exercising.

    Good luck!
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