Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 17

Thread: Energy Level . . . page

  1. #1
    Bill_89's Avatar
    Bill_89 is offline Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    91

    Energy Level . . .

    Primal Fuel
    One of the reasons I was looking to try the primal blueprint in the first place was because I often feel that I lack energy. It doesn't occur while I'm exercising, and in fact, I do usually get out to exercise every day. But for the rest of my day, I often feel very groggy.

    I have been eating primal to the best of my ability for about a week now, keeping in mind that I am a college student with limited funds. So what have I been eating?

    -Eggs (hard boiled and scrambled), chicken breast, spinach salads (w/ mushrooms, tomatoes, green pepper, broccoli, ranch dressing), burger (obviously without a bun), almonds (a daily snack), grapefruit, bananas, apples, green and white tea (decaf), bacon, sausage. Frankly, it has been delicious and I wouldn't mind continuing to eat this way at all. My one cheat (which I plan to remove eventually) is oatmeal--it's cheap and 100% whole grain. I'm certainly well under 100 g of carbohydrate per day.

    I like this diet and think it has a strong theoretical foundation. But I was a little concerned with my energy level today, which seemed even lower than normal. I guess what was even more bothersome was the fact that the fatigue seemed subjectively more "physical." In the past, I would characterize my fatigue as primarily "mental" and due to the stresses of life (social and academic). The fatigue I experienced today just felt different and I can't rule out the possibility it was a consequence of the way I'm eating.

    I am at a healthy body weight and am not trying to lose weight. Basically, my goal is to set a sustainable foundation for preventing disease when I'm older. I would also love to have more energy.

    I guess my questions are . . .

    -Is it normal to experience this when first going on a primal diet?
    -Does a primal diet compromise your ability to compete athletically? Do you "need" carbs to compete at a high level?
    -What are the best ways to increase your energy level? Because I feel like I've tried everything--I go to bed by 10:30, I don't drink soda or alcohol or coffee, I've done yoga, I exercise everyday, and I'm conscientious about my diet.

    I just think the way felt today freaked me out a bit. It made me think, is this really a good way to eat (remember, we live in a society that constantly promotes the healthfulness of grains--and that's a difficult notion to shake when it's been ingrained--no pun intended). I never have been terribly unhealthy, so I don't want to screw my body up. Nonetheless, the Primal Blueprint does seem like a great program and I would like to give it a longer chance . . .

    As a side note, I really want to move to a warmer climate. I hate winter. =/
    Last edited by Bill_89; 12-13-2010 at 02:01 PM.

  2. #2
    Iskander's Avatar
    Iskander is offline Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Averill Park, New York
    Posts
    88
    A lot of folks experience a "low carb flu" when they first get into the primal way of eating. It should wear off after a little bit. You might want to make sure you're getting 8-10 hours of sleep a night, too, just to help out.
    "A man in this world without learning is as a beast of the field."

    My Primal Journal

  3. #3
    Bill_89's Avatar
    Bill_89 is offline Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    91
    That's what I am hoping for. If it's temporary, I can deal with it. That's why I'm going to give it a little longer. I'm still concerned with my low energy levels in general, though. It's hard for me to get my work done.

    In the name of full disclosure, I personally think there are factors beyond diet that are in play. I'm not very happy with my social life right now (I'm socially anxious) and I'm nearing my graduation and not entirely sure what to do with my life. In other words, I'm under stress. I've always been a huge proponent of the mind's ability to affect the body.

  4. #4
    zoebird's Avatar
    zoebird is online now Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    7,935
    the stress was sort of my first inclination.

    the main thing, then, is to work on reducing stress in whatever ways you can. for anxiety, a "grounding" meditation is a good idea. just do a quick google and you'll find lots of resources.

    good luck!

  5. #5
    Bill_89's Avatar
    Bill_89 is offline Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Madison, WI
    Posts
    91
    Thank you!

    So it is fair to say, then, that chronically reduced energy levels are not a typical outcome of the primal diet? Because that would be a huge drawback. Again, the conventional wisdom is that you need carbs (and grains) for energy . . . people here would say that is indeed a mistaken assumption?

  6. #6
    theholla's Avatar
    theholla is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    philly
    Posts
    1,027
    Welcome to the primal way of eating!

    -Is it normal to experience this when first going on a primal diet?
    Like Iskander said, "Low carb flu" is the most likely culprit. It can actually take the body 4+ weeks to fully adapt.

    -Does a primal diet compromise your ability to compete athletically? Do you "need" carbs to compete at a high level?
    The best answer I can give you is...it depends, but for the most part no. It mainly seems to vary depending on the nature of the athletic pursuit, in addition to some individual variations. Check out the "primal fitness" and "primal athlete" boards for discussion of this topic ad nauseum.

    -What are the best ways to increase your energy level? Because I feel like I've tried everything--I go to bed by 10:30, I don't drink soda or alcohol or coffee, I've done yoga, I exercise everyday, and I'm conscientious about my diet.
    Make sure you are eating enough fat! If you're not using added fats for food preparation, your diet looks like it could possibly be too lean. Also, what type of exercise are you doing?

    As for your other stress, I would like to make a few non-primal suggestions. I'm assuming that you're 21 or so and getting ready to complete your undergraduate degree? I work as a university administrator, and it is likely that your school offers free career and psychological counseling - it couldn't hurt to check them out. If your university has a career services department, I guarantee that they see a ton of students with your exact problem. And social anxiety is something that often can be overcome with the help of therapy or support groups. Good luck!
    Last edited by theholla; 12-13-2010 at 02:32 PM.
    The Primal Holla! Eating fat. Getting lean. Being awesome.

    You were sick, but now you're well, and there's work to do. - Kilgore Trout

  7. #7
    Iskander's Avatar
    Iskander is offline Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Averill Park, New York
    Posts
    88
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill_89 View Post
    Thank you!

    So it is fair to say, then, that chronically reduced energy levels are not a typical outcome of the primal diet? Because that would be a huge drawback. Again, the conventional wisdom is that you need carbs (and grains) for energy . . . people here would say that is indeed a mistaken assumption?
    Back when I ate an entirely grain based diet, I never had energy. Switching to an animal and plant (non-grain) based diet has given me huge amounts of energy. Yeah, I'd say it's a mistaken assumption. XD

    Edit: I've also noticed a great improvement in mood after switching to primal. Could help with the stress and whatnot.
    "A man in this world without learning is as a beast of the field."

    My Primal Journal

  8. #8
    tfarny's Avatar
    tfarny is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    3,478
    1. Everyone has some low energy days at first - your body is adapting itself to getting energy from fat instead of carbs and it's not very efficient at first. In the long term, more overall energy and more even energy throughout the day is to be expected.
    2. It's not going to solve your shyness and social life, though I have found myself more sociable as I'm happier and less of a grumpy gus than before. Also, looking better is good for your social life at every level.
    3. Do athletes need carbs, it depends on the person to some extent. Maybe they (you) do, but a LOT less than standard people eat. For a while, I had energy issues playing racquetball, I usually play singles for about 2 hrs. The second hour I really was dragging. Started eating a banana or similar right before game time and that was plenty, no need for a ton of carbs for sure. These days I'm not sure I even need the banana, but I'm not really worrying about it either way any more.

  9. #9
    TornadoGirl's Avatar
    TornadoGirl is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    tejas
    Posts
    543
    I think you'll definitely see an increase in energy, but as others have said, the key on a low carb/low grain diet is more, not less, fat. On other low carb programs, I had energy problems and now, with less carbs, I'm doing more than fine after a month of this. The only difference in my situation is more fat on this program. I also find far fewer cravings with the added fat which is awesome. I just don't think about food all day.

  10. #10
    Dragonfly's Avatar
    Dragonfly is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Port Townsend, Washington
    Posts
    3,732
    PrimalCon New York
    As a side note, I really want to move to a warmer climate. I hate winter. =/
    All good advice and you may want to get your vitamin D levels checked. Sufficient D3 can help with SAD symptoms (not saying you have any!), as well as being essential to a healthy immune system.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •