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Thread: A Work in Progress: Finding the Right Balance page

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    firetiger's Avatar
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    A Work in Progress: Finding the Right Balance

    Primal Fuel
    Hey everyone! I'm a 26 year old graduate student in New Orleans and have been primal for about a month now. I have seen great results already. I feel and look a lot leaner. I am not overweight but would like to tone up my lower ab area a bit. The constant bloated feeling has left. It wasn't that difficult to make the transition as I was eating pretty clean and low carb. The difficult part for me is when I go out with my friends. I try to stick to a cider or red wine but sometimes I end up with a vodka soda. I think life is about balance and since this is a lifestyle I try to be flexible. I'm also struggling when my friends want to grab dinner somewhere. Sometimes the food will now 1) make me feel sick or 2) I don't want anything on the menu or what would be the best choice is not on my grad school budget. I've been pretty good at avoiding eating out.

    Before I always ate about 5-6 small meals. I like the idea of eating when I'm hungry but old habits die hard. I tend to plan when I am home to eat because I know that when I leave my home I will get hungry and make not-the-best decisions. I used to eat a lot of protein bars/nut bars but they were processed and still contained gluten products. So I have now made up baggies of cashews, almonds, a few dried cherries & a few dark chocolate chips. I eat one of these a day usually between classes.

    For exercise I try to get some good walking in out in the Louisiana sunshine if I have time and a WOD usually a HIIT style workout (Bodyrock style or DailyHiit as it's called now) a few times a week. Lately I have found a yoga studio that I really enjoy and I need it more mentally/spiritually than physically. I feel taller (which is not necessary seeing as that I'm 5'11), more flexible and more balanced in general. I am focusing on beating or at least coming to terms with my struggle with long-term depression/anxiety. Yoga is part of my (self-imposed) treatment

    I hate tracking every little thing I eat and counting calories since I truly believe that not all calories are created equally. Here's an example of what I eat/workout times:

    9 am: core workout

    10 am: Breakfast: egg fried in coconut oil, green smoothie consisting of 1/2 c light canned coconut milk, 1/2 banana, handful of greens usually spinach, tsp chia seeds, amazing grass chocolate flavored green powder, & a few frozen berries

    12 pm: Snack: 2 dark chocolate squares dipped in 2 tbsp natural almond butter

    2 pm: Lunch: turkey burger made out of spices & ground 85/15 turkey, 1/2 avocado, 1/4 orange bell pepper

    3:30 pm: coffee with almond milk

    5:15 pm: Dinner: shrimp & stir fry veggies fried in coconut oil with a small amount of soy sauce

    6:00 pm: 1.5 hrs yoga (not super intense) but my lower back feels tweaked)

    7:45 pm: the rest of my dinner I didn't finish

    9:30 pm: baggie of almonds, cashews, a few dried cherries & a few dark choc chips

  2. #2
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    Hi. Welcome!

    Sounds like you are off to a pretty good start.

    Maybe a bit heavy on the snacks. Something that I do too often.

    Spending time with your friends is important. Mark has said that it is worth cheating a bit in order to socialize. Do your best and don't sweat it.
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    I'm so used to eating smaller meals and I get full really fast so I tend to snack. I also hate the full feeling where I ate too much I would get if I made my meals bigger. I went grocery shopping today; I think I had a breakthrough in understanding that this diet/lifestyle is most about fat consumption. There were great sales so I bought: natural chicken breasts, cage free eggs, ground chuck, bacon, pasture butter, full fat canned coconut milk.

    Here's what I ate today:

    10 am: 2 eggs fried in coconut oil, green smoothie (lettuce, green choc. powder, chia seeds, frozen berries, 1/2 banana, lite coco milk)
    I added an extra egg to the one I usually have & I now will use full fat coco milk after I finish the one I have.

    12 pm: coffee with a little almond milk

    2 pm: 1/4 orange bell pepper, 1/3 cucumber peeled, 1/2 avocado, hard boiled egg, 3 strawberries

    5:30 pm: 4 oz ground chuck patty (fried in bacon grease) & salad with 1 slice bacon, bell pepper, baby romaine, balsamic, a few blackberries & olive oil
    I felt super full.

    6:30 pm: Some core work & yoga posturing; irritated lower back so took it easy.

    7:30 pm: I felt starved, rumbling, grumbling stomach & all. Hard boiled egg, tried a little pastured butter (out of curiosity yum), 2 tbsp almond butter with 3 dark choc chips. Still starved. Ate the extra 3 oz ground chuck patty for tomorrow with some course ground mustard. yum. hit the spot.

    I've been tracking my numbers and my protein seems low. My fat is good & my carbs are around 50 g & all from fruits/veggies for the most part. I think the small lunch did not help with the hunger later on but it's all an experiment. I'm trying to listen to my body & not look at the numbers but I was curious to see what my macros were like. I seem to eat around 1500-1600 cals a day. I'm 5'11" about 160 lbs (haven't weighed myself in forever b/c I get obsessed). Yoga is making me super strong. My arms are looking very fit & my stomach is getting flatter. I know I am seeing results; my clothes are fitting very loosely...I need to go shopping. I'll get around to posting some pictures. About 2 years ago I weighed 215 lbs...

    New goals: do a yoga inversion & get my heels down in downward dog (so close). also if I go out with friends to stick to red wine unless it's a beer bar then a good cider.

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    Unhappy

    10:15 B: green smoothie with spinach, lite coco milk, few frozen berries, chia seeds, green powder & 2 eggs fried in pastured butter

    12:00 S1: 1/2 avocado

    I just found out I will not have the research position i was guaranteed & am depressed to the point I am no longer hungry. I think I will go to yoga tonight. Indeed to study for exams while managing my panic about having no summer plans...

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    Panic managed. I will find something. I don't know if it's the diet, Wellbutrin or yoga or a combination of all of them but my depression has been better...I am able to get out of it a lot quicker. My thinking seems less clouded. I've been reading about the benefits of ketosis for mental health & am willing to experiment. I don't really know how to tell if I am in ketosis or not. I am not going to give up eating fruits & vegetables to get my carbs low though. I'm shooting for 50-70 grams per day. If anyone has a comment on if I should be eating x amount of protein per day as well. I have read somewhere around 95 grams for my bodyweight (160ish) but I get closer to 70ish grams per day. Fats are coming easily. I've already fallen in love with pastured butter yum. Oh how I have missed butter.

    The rest of my day:
    4 pm: Giant baby romaine salad with 2 strips of bacon, hard boiled egg, 1/2 avocado, 1/4 orange bell pepper, 1/3 cucumber, balsamic & olive oil

    7:45 pm: 4 oz chicken cooked in 1/2 tbsp pasture butter with broccoli

    8:00 pm: small amount 88% dark chocolate dipped in a tsp almond butter (PMSing)

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    My Progress in Photo Form.

    Summer 2011: 215 lbs
    chunky.jpg

    April 2013: 155-160ish lb
    P1020335.jpg

    P1020334.jpg

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    Good luck on finding something great for the summer.
    Ancestral Health Info - My blog about Primal and the general ancestral health movement. Site just remodeled using HTML5/CSS3 instead of Wordpress.

    My MDA Friday success story - Stubborn Senior's Testimonial

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    Can't sleep & my stomach was growling so I ate a small amount of cashews, almonds & dried cherries. I think the stress of financial/professional insecurity, combined with PMS is wearing on me. Also my eczema is driving me insane. I was really hoping cutting out gluten would magically cure it; I even tell my friends that's why I eat primal (they think I'm crazy). It's getting worse rather than better. I think it's stress-induced. ughhhhhhh. I definitely want to go to yoga tomorrow. I need it.

    New goal: eat more fat/protein at meals to increase satiety & limit fruit/nuts to 1 serving/day (2 max)

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    I've read that some other people have trouble sleeping when they begin the primal lifestyle. I started about a month ago but only this week have I really become rather serious about it. Also in trying to eat larger, more satiating meals I end up feeling huge and overly full, desiring a nap immediately afterwards. I hate that feeling. I am trying to increase my time between meals so I'm not constantly snacking. We'll see how this goes for about 2 weeks before I revert back to smaller meals. I calculated my BMR & since I'm tall and not tiny it says 1562 calories. I probably eat that much max even on the days I workout. If I factor in workouts it goes to more than 2000 calories.

    10:15 B: 2 eggs fried in pasture butter, green smoothie (handful of spinach, 1/3 can coco milk, a few frozen berries, green powder, tsp chia seeds)

    11:15 Coffee with almond milk

    1:45: L: 4oz chicken, cup broccoli, .75 tbsp butter, .5 c mushrooms, 1/2 avocado (feel like I am going to burst)

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    Feeling much better!

    Primal Blueprint Expert Certification
    Feeling a lot better today because I went to yoga (& I broke down and bought a month unlimited), ate super well except for the necessary dark chocolate (PMS hello). It's 88% cacao all natural so I won't eat the whole thing. I dip a few mini squares in almond butter. I have a job interview for another research assistant position *crosses fingers* so things are looking up. Here's the rest of my food from today:

    4:30 S: small baggie of homemade trail mix (raw cashews, roasted almonds, a few dried organic cherries) had to eat something before yoga.

    6-7:30: yoga

    8:00: 4 oz ground chuck patty cooked in 1 tsp bacon grease, handful of spinach & 1 tsp natural ground mustard (new favorite meal yum!) followed by a small amount 88% dark choc with 2 tbsp almond butter

    As of 11:30 pm I still feel satiated so the bigger meals might be working. Ate around 1400 calories. After next week I am going to quit tracking...it's tedious & I get a little obsessed haha. I will use it as a gauge for future meals; I will just keep this journal instead.
    Aren't we all just works in progress?

    Using primal as a tool to heal depression/anxiety & promote overall well-being:
    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread84615.html

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