Eat more. Of everything.
So I've been on a VERY strict primal paleo diet for the last month, mixed in with 40 miles/week running and 3-4 calisthenics or lifting sessions/week. I was making fantastic progress in both strength and running (while looking my best, too!), but as of recently, my muscular tone has started to recede, and it appears that I VISUALLY have my fat in my midsection/torso.
Just about the time this started happening, I began to realize how little I was eating. I was eating around 1400-1600 calories/day, while maintaining my training load. I now hardly EVER feel hungry, I feel awfully full whenever I eat a small/moderate sized meal, and my body composition has began to turn 180 degrees on me (less muscle, more fat). What went wrong? How can I break out of this cycle?
First time post, thanks for the help!
Specifications: 5'7" 145lb. mesomorphic male.
18 years old, very active lifestyle.
Eat more. Of everything.
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If you were happy with your progress before, why the switch to "strict primal"? WHAT are you eating exactly??? Please don't tell me someone of your age, size and fitness level is avoiding carbs. "Strict primal" does not mean low carb. Eat a potato. Or five. And more butter on everything.
I'm also gonna say cut back on all the running. But yes, eat more too
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Well lets see if we can explain it.
1. running 40 miles a week and working out on top of that is a huge endless stress to the body. stress causes the hormone cortisol with I wont explain here but to say it screws with your system. It is the bodies reaction to being chased by a lion and needs to be over with quickly. Long term screws everything up. Dont do it.
2. Strict paleo means what exactly? If you do think it means low carb and low calories and 1400 to 1600 cal a day sounds like it, then that too is a huge systemic stress involving more cortisol as your body thinks it is starving.
So your body will think it is starving, think it is being chased all the time and will burn muscle mass for energy not fat and voila you have fat deposits and muscle mass loss.
I know this is simplistic and incomplete but as I understand it this is what is happening.
You need to up your calories from fat and carbs and possibly protein too. I calculate my calories for weight loss as 15cal/lb of current body weight so for your needs a minimum of 2200 cal and if you exercise a lot, them likely a lot more.
Can you give us an idea of what you eat normally in a day? To start with add a few potatoes or yams or white rice to your daily food.
I would suggest you eat paleo like you want to gain some weight for a few months and let the stress hormones relax and let your body get used to a sense of plenty and see how you do.
I am not a physical trainer either but I would say stop freaking running. Walk an hour or so a day at a comfortable pace and sprint a few times a week. Lift heavy 2 or 3 times a week for 15 or 20 minutes and dont do more for a month and see how you feel.
Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one http://www.utilikilts.com/company/pr...ilts/workmans/ actually.
Join me at www.paleoplanet.net, where all the cavemen hang out.
Classic case of under eating and over exercising. If you're going to be as active as you are, you're gonna to have to pick up the slack with increased calorie consumption. Yes, you need to eat more of everything, but that doesn't really tell you how if you're truly not hungry.
I would recommend eating more fruit/carbohydrate as they tend to be less filling than loads of protein and fat, which will allow you to eat more and probably feel more energized during exercise.
But in order to give you more specific advice, we're going to need to know what you're eating on a daily basis, not just the amount of calories.
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I was actually making great progress during the strict paleo diet for the last 5-6 weeks (sorry, wasn't clear about that). It's only been in the last 5 or 6 days when I've been running into problems. Here's a typical day for me:
Breakfast: 2 egg omlet w/ spinach and mushrooms
Snack: Small serving of beef jerky, with 1/4 cup of almonds, carrot
Lunch: Leftovers (most often poultry + vegetables)
Snack: Spinach salad, and a carrot w/ 1tbsp. of almond butter
Dinner: Pork/Poultry dish, with 3-4 cups of spinach salad.
I'm around 75-100g carbs/day, close to 100g fat/day, and 100-120g protein/day.
Since, I'm an athlete, I guess I should be consuming far more carbs then I currently am. Same goes for fat. Should I stick with a plan of 4-5 meals/snacks per day? This helps me make sure I'm eating rather shortly after a workout in order to refuel, although it sounds like I should eat a lot more. I can post more, or get more specific if need be to fix my situation.
From my understanding, my problem boils down to not enough calories/nutrients, and higher cortisol levels.
Last edited by plindsey206; 09-09-2013 at 04:07 PM.
Yup calories. I'm 5'9, 160 lbs, 35 male. I'll give you my normal day just to compare.
Breakfast: coffee with cream and a bit of honey (say 100 calories)
Lunch: 6 eggs with 4-6 pieces of bacon an orange and a tall glass raw milk (approximate 1000-1200 calories)
Dinner: About a pound of meat with veggies and a small potato (1200-1400 calories)
That there is me at maintenance levels. That's about 2500 calories on the low to mid estimate range, and I'm an old fella compared to you.... only working out hard 2-3 times a week for no more than a half hour. Think you may be undereating?
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