Primal Bodymind - the Primal Journal of bodhimama
Going to start one of these for the Primal Challenge that begins today!
Why bodymind? Because for me this journey is as much, if not more, about working with my mind as it is my body. Currently I'm about 15 lb over where I'm most comfortable, after using homeopathic HCG last year to drop a total of 50 lb. The 15 lb came back because the HCG set up some deprivation/binge dynamics in my head, and because when I don't take care of myself well, I overeat carbs and drink too much alcohol, and that sets me up for fast, relentless weight gain. My body excels at storing bodyfat.
So, although I could use HCG and peel off those 15 lb in about a month, I'm not going to do it, because I'd come out of that month feeling deprived and out of willpower to eat primal afterward. Instead, I'm trying to find a sustainable groove and stay in it.
I am very logical/analytical and have a tendency to overachieve. So I'm not going to post a long checklist of goals or things I will/won't eat or will/won't do. That just sets me up for failure, I've learned. Instead I'm going to make a commitment to a daily post and review of how the day went for me.
Along with eating primal, I'm taking amino acid supplements per The Diet Cure by Julia Ross, and taking a bunch of other supplements (omega-3, vit D, Mg, B-vits, and a few more). It's hard for me to get them in consistently so part of my goal this month is to do that.
And on the fitness side, I'm working on hitting those Primal Blueprint guidelines. I also practice yoga and have a daily meditation practice so I'll try to keep both of those going consistently as well. Meditation is what has gotten me to the point where I feel much more flexible about my life and far less focused on perfection or achieving goals. Yes, I'm 15 lb over where I'd like to be. No, my pants don't fit (I'm living in yoga pants and skirts right now). I'm okay with all this (although debating buying some jeans to wear for a month or two!). And rather than focusing on losing weight, I want to build muscle and drop bodyfat. At my goal weight, I was a bit on the scrawny side, although people said I looked toned. I can't do a single real pushup. I would like to be able to do several real pushups and eventually a real pullup.
Okay, I think that's enough yammering. Today's Day 1.
Today's going to be a really tough day emotionally. I have a bunch of work on my plate, but around 1pm dh will come home and we have to sit and look at goals for our son, who has significant autism. We go in to the school at 2pm to engage in a process of planning what his life will look like and what his 7th grade transition will look like (he is graduating from a K-6 school this spring). It will take 2-3 hours. Then at 6pm we have couples counseling for the first time in over a month because our counselor has been away.
I already know I am going to our lovely localvore restaurant afterward to eat. I will try to keep it primal but might have something with potatoes or rice. I will not touch the delicious local bread because gluten makes me miserable. And I will have a glass of wine or two or a martini if I desire it. I think allowing myself these things is better than going and trying to white-knuckle it through. My personal goal is to keep alcohol to 1-2 nights a week max, and preferably none, but today is an exception because of the intensity of the day. I also find if I give myself permission it's easier NOT to have alcohol, which is kind of counterintuitive. But when I say "You're going out tonight but you WILL NOT drink" to myself, I rebel against that and drink. If I say "sure you can have something," then it's more about in the moment, whether I feel like it is going to enhance my day or detract from it.
I am making a commitment now to taking time this morning to sit in meditation and to take at least a mile walk. Both should help greatly with my mental state going into this meeting.
So, our meeting went from long-term planning to "just" a team meeting thanks to the facilitator canceling, so it was more mellow than I thought and was good to get it done.
We went out to eat and I had a delicious grassfed ribeye with a few green beans and french fries. Had 2 tequila drinks that were tequila, watermelon juice and lime juice - quite yummy and refreshing! (If an odd mix with the ribeye, but I can't do red wine.) And then dh and I split a dessert that was ice cream and brownie - I avoided the brownie part. I did not touch the bread basket.
That was fun. I needed to get out. Back to a low-carb leptin diet today though. I am making chicken stock with almost all local or homegrown ingredients including chicken feet. Eggs for breakfast, probably tuna for lunch and I have a bunch of kale I am going to make into a Korean sesame kale dish (it traditionally uses spinach but it's really good with kale), chicken soup with chicken, a few carrots and chard in it, by dinnertime.
Oh and I walked a mile, and was all pumped up to come back and do my strength training (the 5 essential movements) but I remembered that my neck and shoulders have been crazy tweaked and tense so I decided I should skip it. Somehow, magically, overnight they recovered and are 90% better this morning. Must be the ribeye or something. I'm happy, as I was about to call the chiro this morning because this was a sudden onset and I can't figure out what happened, and it's been pretty severe.
Woke up feeling awful today. Super groggy, like I just couldn't wake up. Then I developed a wicked headache. Took some motrin. Ate fairly well today - eggs for bfast, salad with tomatoes, cucumbers and avocado for lunch, but then I succumbed to a bag of avocado oil chips (about 20g carbs) and a few handfuls of cheddar popcorn. Had tuna salad on cucumber slices for dinner and just 2 bites of the delicious risotto dh made with the stock I've had simmering this afternoon.
Tomorrow, eggs and soup and maybe some sesame kale. And I'm hoping for a good night's sleep tonight. I slept well last night, not sure what is going on - maybe a virus. No exercise today, not even a walk.
Felt a lot better today. 2.5 mile walk in the morning, easy pace. Eggs in ghee for breakfast, an avocado over mesclun greens and cherry tomatoes from my garden, with EVOO and balsamic, and a bowl of homemade chicken soup with fresh-picked carrots and chard (and stock made from our chickens), for lunch. Some kombucha and dark chocolate in the afternoon and then more soup for dinner. I was stuffed after one bowl of soup at dinner. Pretty neat as usually I'm a bottomless pit of hunger.
Took most of my supps, but forgot omega-3s. Did not meditate - I'd like to do a 15 minute session tomorrow as I miss it and notice the mental/emotional difference when I don't do it. I'm so sore still that I am waiting on a full yoga session for a few more days.
The past 2 days have gone well. I've stuck with my eating plan, except for eating homemade fried rice and some wine last night. Feel crappy this am, which just highlights for me how crappy my body must feel when I drink more often. I didn't really enjoy drinking as much as I used to, so I'm tempted to cut it completely out of my life.
I also walked, but haven't added yoga or other workouts yet. Tried to find a kettlebell at Olympia Sports yesterday and they didn't have any. Weird. It was sort of a mini store in the mall so maybe that's why.
Gotta get back on the supplements today.
I am feeling a bit discouraged as the scale hasn't budged in the several weeks that I've been eating primal and doing a leptin reset diet. I'm about 10 lb away from fitting in all my clothes, and when I went to buy some pants yesterday so I can stop living in yoga pants and skirts, I was bulging out of a size 10!!! I feel like my belly is super bloated and I am just really unhappy with where my body size is. I am considering starting a short round of HCG on Monday (loading this weekend) just to get at least 7-10 lb off - I can do that in a couple of weeks on HCG. I'm so not patient. I think if I had a starting point of 140-145 lb, I could be patient with the last 10, because I'd be back to fitting in my clothes. I have a work conference next month and I do not want to spend money on new clothes for it!
I have mixed feelings about the HCG, because I feel very deprived of good fats while on it, and I worry that multiple rounds are what messed up my metabolism to the point where I've been, which is gaining very easily as soon as I have carbs. But I also feel like if I did 2-3 weeks of it (you're not supposed to do a round less than about 26 days, but I really can't do that again), maybe if I went from that straight into a leptin reset diet I'd be okay, and at least I'd be at a starting point where I would fit in my clothes.
I did buy a size L, flowy top and another skirt yesterday. Sigh. So I have *something* different to wear for now.
Hanging on, although I ate grains this weekend via corn tortillas, and quite carby Saturday night with squash/apple soup and roasted root veg and some divine whey-fed pork. I've been doing an 800-1000 cal diet with the hcg pellets, eating a tbsp of coconut oil a day and 4tsp omega-3 oil. I just realized looking back at this journal that my belly bloat is gone - yay! That's definitely a positive thing.
Down a couple of pounds (can we call last weekend a carb refeed? perhaps... ) and done with my very short, very imperfect HCG experiment. It is just not for me. Although it did seem to lean me out a bit and get rid of excess bloating. My thighs and waist are about an inch smaller around each (can't find my measuring tape but my size 6 pants just about fit again!).
Moving on...I am unsure where to go from here. Primal, certainly, but I'm chewing over whether I am leptin resistant, and should do a Kruse-style reset, or whether I should go Leangains style and IF for 14-16 hours a day (I mostly do this already - he recommends 14 for women, which if I stop eating at 8pm, means not eating until 10am the next morning - um, that is pretty much what I do, but pushing it to 12noon is a little iffy for me).
Think I will just relax, try to keep a 14-hour IF window, eat 3 roughly 4-500 cal primal meals with no or few snacks (a little kombucha and pickles between means helps me with boredom, otherwise just green tea/stevia), and pick up on the PB Fitness bodyweight strength training piece of things. I'm already walking at least 2-3 miles a day and doing yoga once a week. Recommitting to that weekly yoga class as I went yesterday for the first time in a while and realized how wonderful it is for my mental outlook and my physical body.
Mostly, think I'll just relax about all of it! Focus on building strength, having fun, connecting with my body and mind, and resting well and taking care of my stress levels. Since losing 50 lb last year and struggling not to gain some back (I'm about 35 lb down from my highest now, but more muscle and less fat than my lowest), food has become more of the enemy and my diet and exercise something to master and control. When I let go of that entirely this summer, I gained 15 lb back over a few months. So, I need to find some kind of balance with it, so I can think less about what to eat and how much of it and when and macros and blahblahblah, but not completely forget that I have to keep things in check or I will end up back where I started.
Balance...it's all about balance. My life is one big chronic stressor and I really need to put taking care of myself as the top priority - but realizing that doesn't mean obsessing about food and exercise.
I kind of forgot about this journal. I have been IFing since early October, first 14-16 hours a day, now 16-18 hours a day. A 24-hour fast seems too stressful for me but one day I did 20 hours.
I have started doing Skogg and Lauren Brooks kettlebell workouts and love them. Think I am sticking with the whole Skogg program for now although I might cut back to 3 workouts a week instead of going up to 4 like he suggests.
My weight hasn't really changed but my bodyfat % is going down per my (yes I know it's not the most accurate) handheld Omron (I'm just using it to gauge overall trends, it helps me not focus on the scale when that number doesn't change). I'm able to eat primally during my feeding window and not really count calories, although I'm tracking carbs on workout days so that I can make sure I get enough but don't overdo it. 75g or so of carbs on rest days and 150g on workout days is going well so far.
I'm deep into some Buddhism books. Oh what does this mean for meat-eating? *huge sigh* I am fearing that I will eventually give up meat because I truly want to walk the Buddhist path. If that happens, at least I will know how to eat vegetarian in the most primal way (ie no grains, high-protein soaked/sprouted legumes, eggs and dairy). I'm not there yet, not by a long shot. The reading has just got me thinking...
Hello! It sounds like you're on the right track with eating...and Intermittent Fasting too. If you're trying to lose only 15 lbs, you really don't have too long to go! It is hard to avoid carby treats sometimes (like the chips, fries, and popcorn), but after a while of eating primally (and through some trial and error), you won't even consider it food anymore. I'm rooting for you!