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Thread: Looking for the Trail Marker again page

  1. #1
    Hadoop's Avatar
    Hadoop is offline Junior Member
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    Looking for the Trail Marker again

    Primal Fuel
    Hey Now,

    I'm 5 days into the 21 day challenge. Having survived the work week, I thought I'd lay out my thoughts, plans, etc.

    I'm a 42 y.o. guy, 6'4". I've been in a corporate job for the last 6 years and I've seen my weight creep ever upwards. 10 years ago, I was 220 .. a bit on the heavy side but nothing terrible. I don't weigh myself often but this spring was a wake-up call when I stepped on a scale and I saw 272. I knew I needed to do something.

    I'm relatively healthy. My BP has been creeping up along with my weight but I'm not hypertensive. My blood sugar and other blood work have always been ok. Over the past few years, I've attempted a few times to get "back in shape." 2 years ago, I did the Couch to 5k program and took up running. I achieved a few 5K's, But after 3 months, my knees were killing me .. and I didn't seem to lose any weight. Last year, I decided to go slower and do something I love .. hike. There is a great, very hilly park near my home and I started doing 7 mile hikes twice a week. I just love hiking. But as I discovered at my next physical, it did nothing for my weight. This past spring, I was gifted a very nice road bike and I've rediscovered the joy of riding, the first time since my childhood. But again, my weight pretty much stayed where it was.

    My diet has been a mess the last few years. I've tended to skip breakfast except for coffee. I succumbed the illusory ease of fast food for lunch. Dinner has usually be a good protein and greens but almost always along with a hefty serving of rice or pasta or french bread.

    A colleague of mine introduced me to MDA and the Primal Blueprint a year or two ago and I've been lurking, slowly digesting the info. It's got a definite appeal .. it just makes a lot of sense to me. So, I got Mark;s 21-Day Challenge book along with his cook book, spent a few weeks preparing myself. This past Monday, I got started with a pure primal diet.

    My goals: In the short term, I want to begin losing weight .. Mid-term, I'd like to drop 50 pounds .. long term, I'd like to drop below 200 lbs. I'm a patient guy, as long as the trend is in the right direction, I'm not going to panic or fret.

    This first week I started stumbling around with recipes and meal plans. Breakfast has been really hard for me because I detest eggs (and have ever since childhood). This week saw me eating bacon, pork chops, greens and other vegetables for breakfast. I got over the "strangeness" pretty quickly. Lunch has been big salads with protein .. brisket, pulled pork (naked), pork chop, chicken. Dinner has been mostly the same as lunch. I've got some nuts for snacks but haven't really felt the need for them. I've fallen in love with Trader Joe's Cruciferous Crunch slaw .. I throw a few handfuls on top of a pile of greens and pour on the olive oil. Delicious. I've been using grass-fed butter and olive oil. Not sure if I'm ready for coconut oil.

    The first 2 days were good. But on day 3, I hit a wall. I had a terrible headache, I couldn't really think straight and had awful energy levels. I crashed when I got home and decided I'd add a buttered sweet potato to my dinner. I also treated myself to a beer (a love of mine). Dinner really anchored me. After a good night sleep, I awoke on Thursday feeling great. My energy the last 2 days has been fantastic.

    For exercise, I've been doing morning and post-dinner walks for 30 minutes or so, nothing strenuous. This afternoon, I got on my bike and did a quick 15 miles, again not too fast. My bike route the added bonus of some big hills that require me to get in some good sprints .. panting, tongue hanging out sprinting. They're not long but STEEP. For strength training, I was inspired by a success story in the 21-day challenge book and gym related .. all pluses in my book.

    On the macronutrient side, I've been using MyFitnessPal to track my calories and nutrition. I know it's not exact as all my food is homemade but I think its a good enough. Besides, I love the way it freaks out at my fat intake. I've been getting between 45-90 grams of carbs per day. Hopefully in the sweet spot.

    My biggest concern so far .. I fear I am not eating enough. My calorie tracker usually hits 1500 calories by the end of the day. But honestly, the last 2 days, I've just not been hungry. I feel pretty good after breakfast and I really enjoy lunch. But at dinner the last two nights, I've had to work to clean my plate. I didn't feel overly full .. just satisfied. I honestly wonder how people eat so many calories. I suppose I need to eat more fat! But I am worried that I am compromising my weight-loss with too few calories. Any advice out there? How can I get more calories without it feeling like work?

    I've already seen the scale drop some. I know its water-weight but its a start.

    I'll check in again after the weekend. Its my first weekend on the blueprint. I'm prepped with a fridge full of good veggies of all sorts and some great proteins ready to go.
    Last edited by Hadoop; 07-25-2014 at 05:55 PM.

  2. #2
    leighlu's Avatar
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    Good luck and welcome. Great start

  3. #3
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    Meant2Move is offline Senior Member
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    Welcome, Hadoop!

    I wouldn't worry too much about the calories if you feel satisfied. The notion of 'starvation mode' or whatever others call it mostly applies when one does not get enough exercise. If you are moving, you are unlikely to have a problem. Just keep an eye on the food quantity. I tend to think about it in terms of food quality - if it is good (and yours sounds good) then I figure I am getting a nice array of all the good stuff (vitamins, minerals, macros) and my body will manage just fine. I don't see the point of eating when I'm not hungry, but then I don't really think much of the calories in/calories out notion either.

    I wish you great success as you sort out this new lifestyle.
    M2M

    "Nonspecific strength gains have to be converted into real improvements in athletic performance or they are not useful."
    - Training for the New Alpinism by Steve House and Scott Johnston

    Primal Journal: Hmm, I'll take this path...

  4. #4
    angela's Avatar
    angela is offline Senior Member
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    Sounds like you've made a great start already, Hadoop. There is something in my nature that rebels against a lot of rigid structure, so anytime I even think of making a "daily log" or a "food diary", the red flags go up and I resist. I cannot tell you how many failed attempts I've made at a daily anything.

    Which is why I love the Primal Blueprint so much....I just listen to what my body tells me. Like you, I've never been a breakfast eater because I don't like eggs. And that's okay. Most days, I'm not hungry until close to lunchtime anyways. Some days, all I need when I get home is little protein/fat snack. Other days, I'm ravenous and need a full meal. It all becomes so simple when you just eat when you're hungry and don't when you're not. I tried tracking meals and paying attention to calories, macros, blah, blah, blah....but seriously....I am a chef. I don't want to take all the beautiful artistry of good food and break it down into nuts and bolts. It's like listening to Mozart and appreciating the mathematical genius of his music. Where's the passion in THAT?

    I digress.

    What I'm trying to say (very badly) is that you can be successful with PB and not be on top of every detail about every morsel of food that goes into your body. At least, that's been my experience. Three months in, and as of today, down 30 lbs. I exercise at moderate levels, try to eat clean, and just enjoy living! Hope your own path becomes apparent in the coming weeks, and that you find your version of happy and healthy!
    "Locked up inside you like the calm beneath castles is a cavern of treasures that no one has been to....let's go digging" ~ Maynard James Keenan

    I am Angela, Southern Fried Primal... http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread106998.html

  5. #5
    narrowminded's Avatar
    narrowminded is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Hadoop and welcome as others before me have said, you need to listen to your body. It sounds like you've had a great first week. Remember you have a lot of stored calories for you body to deal with so, I wouldn't sweat the calories too much. Sounds like you had a dose of carb flu this week and flew right through it. i think you're doing great. I'll be following you journey to cheer you on.

    Grok on!

  6. #6
    Hadoop's Avatar
    Hadoop is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the warm welcome and support.

    I hear you on the daily calories. As for listening to my body, it's a work in progress. I think that for years I've confused carb cravings with hunger. Now that the cravings are gone .. I'm discovering that hunger, thankfully, is more subtle. I had a great breakfast this morning and went out and got my sledgehammer. I start Shovelglove on Monday as my strength training. Looking forward to it.

    Now out to the Farmer's Market.

  7. #7
    tersie's Avatar
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    I'll be interested to follow your journal and see how you do as we both started to 21 Day Challenge at the same time. Looks like you had a great first week! I also worry a bit about not eating enough. I am eating more filling foods now and I feel like I've eaten so much, but when I look at the daily tally, it's right around a thousand calories. But I'm feeling great! I'm letting that be my biggest marker on how I'm doing.

    Keep fighting the good fight!




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  8. #8
    Hadoop's Avatar
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    Had a pretty successful first weekend on the challenge. I was a bit worried what with a change in daily routine and the new primal habits I'm trying to inculcate.

    Got my sledgehammer and put together my first weeks set of movements.

    Today I did my first set of sprints. I did them first thing this morning, fasted. They were intense but I felt great. Did a ton of chores this morning and into early afternoon when my gas tank finally emptied out. Nothing like carb flu earlier this week but definite low energy. Was moving slowwwwwwww. So added the buttered sweet potato to dinner and expect to be up an at em come dawn.

    I clearly underestimated the intensity of those sprints. Strong stuff.

    On into week 2.


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  9. #9
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    Yay for Shovelglove! It's my exercise of choice and I just love it. You get really nice shoulder muscles and biceps that way - and a strong back.


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  10. #10
    Hadoop's Avatar
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    Looking for the Trail Marker again

    Thanks Meepster. I'm enjoying Shovelglove, just 2 days in but I really like the burn in my arms and shoulders. 14 minutes is really quite a bit of work.

    I'm really digging week 2 of the 21 day challenge. The weigh continues its downward trend.

    My big discovery this week is local, pasture raised and grass-fed meats. I found a great local farm providin amazing cuts of beef, pork and chicken. The taste is simply incredible. Last week, in my first week of the challenge I used meats on hand from the local chain grocery. There just is no comparison in flavor. I really had a religious experience this morning with that local, pasture raised bacon. Got a freezer of more cuts to go.

    Meals have been good. I'm sticking to around 1700-1800 calories a day. Lots of fat and protein. I'm finding not too hard to keep under 60g of carbs. My energy and focus is stable throughout the day (a big change for me).

    It's a really different relationship with food. I find I don't relish the anticipation of eating a meal. In fact, before I eat it, I'm almost disinterested in eating. But when I'm done, I'm completely satisfied without feeling overly full at all. It might be everyday-ish for some but it's a whole new world for me.

    Onward thru to the weekend.



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