Max's Uncreative Journal Title
So after lurking on and off this forum for three years now, I have decided to make a journal. Perhaps I will update it daily, or perhaps I will post a bunch at first and then forget to ever post again. Only time will tell.
I am a 22 year old male, live in NYC, and just graduated college. I have been a long distance runner for the past 6-7 years, and have regularly ran up to 60-80 miles a week for a few months at a time each year (usually two 3-4 month blocks per year). I ran cross country and track for my high school and college.
Anyway, I'll start by saying how I actually got involved with primal in the first place. As a freshman in college, I felt the need to take my running to "the next level" (whatever that means). I began to cut out junk food in the hopes of performing better, but got completely sucked into the conventional wisdom dogma and began cutting out most fats and meats. This was not the problem though, the real problem was that I was [I]cutting calories[/I] too much, and rapidly began to lose weight.
After 6 months, while running up to 10-11 miles a day, I dropped from 135 pounds to 115 pounds (I am 5'5). During the time, I would weigh myself every day and then notice that I weighed less, thinking the weight loss would improve my running. I would purposely eat less each day just to lose more weight, basically becoming mildly anorexic. During those six months, I felt depressed, tired, cold, hungry, and had no sex drive (I might have masturbated once a month during this time). I counted calories at the time, and probably ate around 2,000-2,500 (which definitely was less than I ate in high school). By the way, I severely underperformed for the training I did, and only ran well once I stopped restricting myself. It's amazing what only six months can do.
A typical typical meal was 2 pieces of whole wheat bread, 2-3 slices of turkey breast, no cheese or sauce, and a BUNCH of raw vegetables. YUM. I also drank water and tea all day long to stay "full."
After "snapping out of it," I spent a month eating excessive amounts of food, and for some reason a lot of fruits and smoothies. I stumbled upon Mark's site here and there while starving myself, but I thought he was crazy for eliminating healthy whole grains. After watching Tom' Naughton's movie "Fat Head," I was convinced - and declared that I would never ever eat wheat again. I was so surprised and enlightened to find out that saturated fat was actually GOOD for me, not the evil macro-nutrient I had thought it was.
And so I ate, and ate, and ate, and ate. I ate until my stomach hurt. I would not go to bed until I was completely full (since I went to bed hungry so often before). There was another problem though, for the next 6 months I ate a LOW CARB diet. Here I was, 125 pounds and 20 years old, eating a high fat high meat low carb diet. I may have eaten around 50-100 grams of carbs a day at most.
After realizing it was okay to eat potatoes and rice and bananas, I got into another issue - binge eating. I would often stuff myself silly in the kitchen, and I still find myself doing it now a days (not to the point of discomfort though). During this time (sophomore year), despite running 50-70 miles a week, I ended up gaining weight and fat to reach over 140 pounds.
Fast forward another year, after a good season and back to my normal weight, I decide that doing intermittent fasting for months would be a good idea. At least 5 times a week, I would run high mileage and lift on a 16-24 hour fast. I also over the last 2 years dialed down to lower caloric intake towards the end of the season to get to "racing weight." (No, I didn't go through that awful anorexia mindset again, just ate a little less to get down to 130ish pounds instead of 140.)
Here I am today, after starvation, low carb, binging, cutting calories for race weight, and fasting. I have not done anything crazy in the last year. I have been getting very interested in what Zach has to say about nutrition (randomly popped on here a few months ago to see Derp and Zach posting crazy stuff and couldn't stop following them). The last few months I have been eating a low low PUFA diet, much more sugar and salt, a good amount of saturated fat and starch, and less meat and more gelatin. I'm also not eating gluten, but will not go crazy avoiding it since I don't think I am actually intolerant. I am also not crazy strict anymore.
I have stopped running for 6 weeks now as my final season just ended. I finally can approach fitness in a more balanced way now that I am not on a scholarship and a team. I have been weightlifting, been doing sprints, playing basketball, and plan to run here and there just to stay in shape to run with the people I will be coaching this fall when I want to.
I fear that I did mess up my metabolism during this 4 year nutrition adventure. After reading about metabolism by Matt Stone and Emily Benfit ([url=http://butterbeliever.com/low-body-temperature/]Low Body Temperature? What Your Thermometer Can Tell You About Your Health | Butter Believer[/url]), I am convinced that I screwed myself over. I am over 140 pounds again, but definitely have gained some strength (and perhaps muscle). I also have been severely overeating these past weeks - a) because I could care less if I am not light since I don't have to race b) I love eating and c) I want to "raise my metabolic rate" (Although I don't think that's the right way to go about it ?). Also, I'm sure the restriction from a few years ago still effects me today in regard to overeating. I just know that, I ate more in high school without gaining fat. Some days I feel I look rather muscular and lean, and other days I look bloated and chunky.
I am grateful to have been able to learn a ton about nutrition and health over these last few years. I am also glad that I found out that I love nutrition, health, and exercise.
Wow, that was pretty long. I guess I'm just bored and rambling. Anyway - if you actually read this, thanks.
[B]Also, here I am 6 weeks ago[/B] [ATTACH=CONFIG]12067[/ATTACH].
[B]Here I am almost anorexic[/B] [ATTACH=CONFIG]12068[/ATTACH].
[B]Here I am now - BUZZED[/B] [ATTACH=CONFIG]12069[/ATTACH]