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    Primal Journal - Owly

    Primal Fuel
    My health and fitness levels have been up and down for much of my adult life. I was a really active, skinny kid, and that carried on through my high school years. I danced, swam, rollerbladed, and loved to play outside and go hiking in the mountains. I practically lived on my bicycle--it was my teenage key to freedom, and I would ride to the other side of the city to visit friends without ever worrying if it was too far.

    However, that all changed. I went away to my first year of university and lived in residence, where the food consisted of casseroles topped with tater tots, french fries and gravy, and desserts every night. I grew up in a house where healthy (if CW) eating was the norm, and I had no clue how much havoc that new eating style could wreak. I went from slim to chubby pretty quickly, especially living in a new city and living a sedentary student life. That was made even worse the following year, when I started smoking (I was one of those rare idiots who pick up the habit as an adult).

    Through my 20s, my weight went up and down. If I was active, I'd be slim, like the years that I worked in the stockroom of a store and lifted boxes all day. Then life would change and I'd go back to being larger again (topping out at a size 16, about 210 pounds).

    Then, four and a half years ago, I quit smoking. I had to do something with the stress, so I began doing taekwondo, followed by getting into ballroom dancing and running. That year, I was also diagnosed with celiac disease. The diagnosis meant learning a whole new way to eat. At first, I had no idea what to do, so I basically cut out all grains, becoming sort of paleo-by-accident. Over the next few months, I dropped from a size 14 to a size 4, losing 65 pounds in the process.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    So then how did I end up back here?

    First of all, I learned how to do a lot with the grains I was still allowed. Let me tell you, I am a kick-ass gluten-free baker. I learned to make beautiful cakes, amazing cookies, and moist muffins without wheat, and I ate them like crazy.

    I also stopped exercising. For my body, that's a surefire way to gain weight. My mother had been battling brain cancer for a long time, and she ended up moving into a hospice. She was there for about two years before she died in 2009. The constant travel back and forth from her city to mine and the ongoing stress meant that I pretty much gave up on exercising for the last year of her life.

    Last summer, I got back to the dojang and started to get back on track, only to break my leg at my promotion test last August. The injury was complex, involving a serious ankle sprain, a broken fibula, a bad MCL tear, and a bunch of other soft tissue damage. My first physio was mostly only interested in getting me walking again, and it wasn't until I went to my current physio that things started to really get better with the leg. After a few months of strengthening and rehab, he approved me to start CrossFit. My knee is still not up to the rotational force of TKD, and it may never be there, but I'm finding new passion and challenge with CF (especially discovering that I can lift some pretty heavy stuff). Being active really helps my emotional state too.

    And that brings me to choosing to try PB. As I researched CrossFit, I came across the idea of paleo/primal eating. I'd read some posts at MDA before, thanks to some links on Stumptuous, and I came back here again to check it out. Seriously, I love eating fat. I don't have much of a sweet tooth, but I will eat butter off a spoon. The science makes sense, and it feels like a WOE that I can stick with. I already get about 90% of my weekly groceries at the local farmers market, and we'd already committed in our household to eating local, grassfed, organic meats and eggs. Making the transition seemed fairly natural. I love the way we're eating now and don't feel deprived. Being in grad school and working full time, it's easy to slip into eating boxed crap, but I'm learning more and more tricks to making healthy meals from scratch without spending all night in the kitchen. I've also funnelled my baking energy into cooking other stuff instead. Producing a delicious, real meal makes me feel grounded and reconnected with my physical self, which is important when my work and school life is so focussed on my head. The big food issue is my partner: he doesn't have a sweet tooth, he *is* a sweet tooth, and although he wants to be primal too, it's a struggle for him to kick the sugar habit.

    So, my goals:
    Keep building the habit of eating real, locally grown foods
    Fit into my favorite blue dress from Korea
    Get enough sleep--this is a major challenge for me with such a full life
    Play more
    Get to the gym 3x week--better for my mood, better for my body
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    SOOOO happy to have you! ... You have made some great contributions so far and I am glad you have a journal I can now stalk... look out!

    Welcome *warm hug* I can't wait to see the photo of you in that dress smiling and being all happy and stuff!

    Manda
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    http://primalterp.blogspot.com/

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    Aw, thanks Manda! Your journey is pretty inspiring, and we're both newbie CrossFitters (I started July 20). I'm pretty sure we will both have lots to share with each other.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    Three reactions to VFFs at my office:

    "Those are cool!"
    "Those are ugly!"
    "Those are sort of creepy..."

    Also, someone made popcorn in the office this afternoon. Instead of craving popcorn, I just wanted butter. I haven't totally decided what to make for dinner tonight, but zucchini sauteed in butter is definitely going to be a part of it.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    Welcome!

    I wish I could use VFFs while working... maybe if I move to Boulder or something... people aren't into them as a "business professional" attire yet. booface

    On another note... what part of Canada are you from???

    Have a great rest of your day!
    Manda
    Live Like No One Else

    http://primalterp.blogspot.com/

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    Heh. I work in a pretty casual office, and people here wear all kinds of interesting things. My VFFs are just another bit of character.

    I'm in Alberta. Very big sky, very big trucks.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    OOO doesnt alberta almost border Minnesota and North Dakota???? if I remember correctly its the second prov. in from the west right?
    Live Like No One Else

    http://primalterp.blogspot.com/

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    Oh, much farther west than that. We are north of Montana (well, the western half of it).
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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    Breakfast today: omelette (2 pastured organic eggs, crimini mushrooms, cream cheese), cafe au lait (fair trade organic shade-grown coffee, organic full-fat milk).

    Oh, and I got dressed this morning and fit into my favorite jeans (Mission Playground, organic cotton, best fit ever). Size 8 jeans. Oh yes. What's weird is that I'm still weighing in at 180 pounds. Is my body composition really changing that much? At my height, that's still technically 10 pounds overweight.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal

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