Primal in Alaska
Hi everyone! I haven't technically 'gone primal' yet, as I'm headed out the door to do some grocery shopping to officially be eating primal, but I've been lurking here on Mark's Daily Apple and have purchased and read through much of his Primal Blueprint book.
I think I have quite a long story, but I felt it would be worthwhile to introduce myself and maybe find some people in the same boat. My name is Rebecca, I am 21 and I live in Anchorage, Alaska. I've been struggling with weight since I was 11. I am currently 5'8 and 260 lbs. In high school I lost 60 pounds but it took all I had and I was barely eating. I had to exercise 2+ hours every single day and, as you might have guessed, the weight came back and then some.
Over the past 6 years I've progressed from following an anorexic lifestyle in attempts to lose, to following Conventional Wisdom, to veganism and none of it helped. I eventually gave up and went back to eating SAD. I am a college student so for the last year I'm lived mostly on grain and sugar based products, because they are cheap and don't spoil.
That's not to say I don't love eating natural foods, but at some place in my journey I must've stopped and though "What's the point?" I was fat, tired, depressed and unfufilled. Even while my future is bright there's always the obesity bringing me down, mentally and physically.
To be honest, about a year ago during my conversion to veganism I stumbled on the paleo and primal ways of eating and they made so much sense to me, but I was scared. Scared of giving up the grains, the peanut butter, the bread...and beyond that I was convinced veganism was the healthiest way to be.
Now, one year later and 30 pounds fatter, I am struggling with episodes of extreme binge eating and I've been trying to no avail to find the 'mental issue' causing it but something sparked a memory of the primal lifestyle and in the past few weeks I have been mulling it over and I've decided to make the plunge. I have nothing to lose, except a whole lot of weight and stress. I used to hold on desperately to the idea that it all comes down to 'calories in and calories out' but...if the food I'm eating is causing fatigue, illness and lack of satiety then it's not really a matter of 'calories in and calories out', is it? I overeat on the SAD diet because it's lacking in so many areas.
So I'm heading out the door to stock up on lots of primal foods and I'm going to start frequenting the forum here. I know the next 30 days might be rough, and I'm not even going to focus on weight loss. I want to eat naturally for a while, clear out the grains and sugar, and see how I feel. :) I am really excited to finally start getting in touch with what my body actually needs and wants so that I can someday hope to lose this weight.
Good luck from a fellow Alaskan! I started primal eating back in November. The nice thing is that we have a pretty good selection (in the Anchorage area) of primal options. The dark side is it's bloody expensive, as most things are up here. But I traveled to NC over Christmas and shockingly it was harder for me to find primal foods there than it is here. We've actually got pretty good grocers here. :)
Welcome! My wife is from Kenai, so every time we visit, we stock up on as much smoked salmon and caribou as my F-I-L will part with. The Kenai Safeway was almost devoid of pastured meats, so that made the proteins a little tougher to find, but Anchorage seems a lot easier. Here in Chicago of course it's a breeze!
Your last paragraph is right on. I think you'll find substantial changes in 30 days--I did.
Do you do anything for Vitamin D in the winter? That may be an important thing when it's dark so long.
If anyone wants an update my first day going primal went fantastic! I ate eggs, fruit, veggies, meat, some dairy and almost no sugar and absolutely no grains.
For awhile it was tough, as my family was eating sandwiches, cake and chips for dinner! To be honest, I ate a few too many handfuls of nuts trying to keep myself out of the chip bags but eventually I didn't even want the chips.
I have a roast in the crock pot and I'm quite excited to have some grassfed organic beef for lunch tomorrow!
I can tell there is going to be a learning curve as far as finding things to throw together quickly. Earlier I just wanted something with substance so I ate a can of tuna, and once I'd gotten something in my belly I ended up making some broccoli to help balance out the meal. It was very satisfying.
I'm hoping I can get through tomorrow without too much hassle. I hope eventually the cravings for grains and sugar will be diminished to a point where they're easier to control. :)
I honestly feel really good about the food. I'm a little worried about the sleep. I have long believed I felt the most rested and energetic after about 9 hours of sleep, and with a consistent bedtime and waking time. Working full-time and being in college I feel my sleep rythm is way off and it's disrupting everything else. I am working on it though and hopefully in the next few weeks it'll be worked out and I can get 9 hours each night, going to bed at the same time and waking at the same time. I feel this is something that greatly affects my ability to make good decisions and deal with stress.