Primal Journal: JOAN MIRÓ
So today I'm taking the plunge.
I've been reading far and wide the past two months on paleo/primal and slowly but surely kickin' the grains and processed foods to the curb. That said, I've been yo-yoing back and forth and experiencing a frustrating trend of progress and relapse, etc.
This past weekend I went to the beach and realized that my body is nowhere near what I want it to be, and as a confident and successful person my physique does not match who I am in other aspects of my life.
A bit of my history:
I've been fat ever since childhood. I struggled (and struggle) with a lack of self-esteem due to my body composition. Thankfully, I've always been able to compensate socially for my lack of physical prowess with my irresistible wit and charm and thus I've thankfully never experienced the kind of solitary isolation that many obese youth experience. That said, my insecurity regarding my body has inhibited me in other areas..
I'm 24 years old, male, 5´8" (1.72 m) and my weight currently fluctuates between 98-100 Kg (218-223 lbs.) depending on the day.
I've weighed > 200 lbs. since puberty... at my heaviest, about 3 1/2 years ago, I was 255 lbs (115 kg), and miserably depressed and unhappy. I moved to Barcelona and a general increase in activity level as well as a tendency towards the "Mediterranean" diet I dropped about 20 lbs and hovered around 235 (106 kg) for the past 3 years.
Last year due to an unfortunate poisoning, I was hospitalized and almost died. Thank God, I didn't. This incident was very rare and not even the doctors/toxicologists/endocrinologists knew what was going to be the result. They just told me to live a healthy lifestyle to help mitigate any potential residual effects.
So I began cutting out the pizza and packaged food and cooking my meals. That along with an unintentional trend of IF (I just wasn't hungry) and by Christmas '09 I'd reached my current weight.
That said, I still felt poor and began looking for ways to improve my health. About two month ago I discovered MDA thanks to an article by Karen DeCoster on Lewrockwell.com. Since then I've been reading, reading, cooking, eating, and slowly getting my toes wet.
Today I'm going all in.
- Get to 170 pounds (77 kg)
- Feel good
- Gain confidence
- Improve odd autoimmune tendencies I have (eczema, etc)
For the next 30 days I am going to:
- Eliminate all grains, dairy (hitherto this has been my big hindrance), processed foods, industrial oils
- Try to avoid starches (potatoes/sweet potatoes)
- Cook only with animal fats (lard, duck fat) and some oils (EVOO, Coconut). Butter/Ghee is out!
- Eat more plants (At least one salad per day)
- Limit my fruits (no more than one serving per day)
- Walk/bike to and from work
- Sunbathe as much as possible
- Swim in the Mediterranean
- Shovelglove M-F
- Sleep at least 7 hours a night.
Now, challenges I see:
- Alcohol. I drink wine during the week and go out partying on Saturday nights (i.e. mixed drinks and beer). Beer is out, as are mixers. I am going to limit myself to no more than a glass of wine during the week and stick to straight spirits on Saturdays.
- Starches. At times my blood sugar goes a little awry and I don't feel better until I eat something starchy (i.e. potato fried in duck fat). I'm going to try to avoid this by eating more fats..
- Addictive eating/emotional eating. I've eaten this way all my life and I'm sure I'll have my moments of weakness. The point is to minimize these moments
- Munchies. I enjoy the occasional joint and this often leads to horrible munchie sessions (especially if I smoke on an empty stomach). I am going to reduce my consumption and ensure I am full when I do indulge.
- Social pressures. Food and drink are life in Spain and society revolves around these items. It will be tough to avoid the pressures of my friends and loved ones but I will try and not worry about minor slip ups committed in the name of friendship.
- Sleep. This is quite a nocturnal culture, and sleep patterns are hard to establish. When I go out during the weekend I usually arrive home between 5 and 8 a.m. Then during the week I work at 9 a.m. It's hard for me to fall asleep before 130/2 a.m. and I end up sleeping only 5-6 hours a night.
I will update daily with my trials and tribulations, triumphs and failures.
I look forward to hearing thoughts, comments, suggestions, criticisms. Wish me luck but don't sugarcoat your thoughts, I wanna hear what you think!
Last edited by joanmiro; 06-07-2010 at 07:04 AM.
If you primalize your kitchen, it will help. A primal kitchen doesnt have allot of snack-ready foods, and you need to want something enough to put in the effort to cook it.
Originally Posted by joanmiro
Meatme216: Thanks for the encouragement. I think it won't be as hard as I think.
Evita: Sí, sí que hablo castellano
JM- ¡Que bueno!
yo soy Argentina
My moms side of the family is from Spain. Im on the opposite journey, I moved from a heavy nocturnal and social drink/food culture in Buenos Aires to the United States. I've spent equal time in both. The US certainly enjoys its food and drink but as I'm sure you've concluded in Spain its totally different! The timing, pace, purpose, ingredients, portion, and amount of walking make a big difference.
Anyways, thanks for sharing your story and history with food and body image Im also a big fan of coming off my high and mighty primal horse to commit carbicide in the name of friendship and my birth culture! When my family visits or I go back- I go right for the cafe con leche y medialunas ! My extra five-ten pounds came from when I came to the US and stopped enjoying my food with loved ones. I am on a college campus and most the stuff here is crap. Primal helped me get my balance back, Im sure you will do great and feel great even with taking a few detours for joints and drinks
I agree with meatme216, try and get some primal snacks around for if and when you should feel the need. Keep exploring cooking, and invite some amigos over for a "primal" type meal. Maybe being host will help cut back on the wine and give a lil boost in the confidence
oh and get some sleep!! buena suerte!!
Well, yesterday was not the most successful first day as I'd hoped. I actually did have some friends over for dinner last night. My contribution was the Mediterranean Beef Stew with Green Olive Pesto from health-bent.com. Delicious.
Unfortunately, my friends brought some artesan cheeses over and I couldn't help but partake in a few slices.
Day 1 of no dairy = fail.
The wine, of course, flowed and I had more than my self-permitted 1 glass.
Ayy, ok, today's another day.
In all my meals for Yesterday:
Lunch- Salad w/ Hardboiled egg, olives, peppers, onions, carrot in Olive Oil Vinegar & Pork Loin with blueberry reduction sauce and baked apple (no sugar)
Dinner- Tapas of artesan cheese and Cecina de Leon, Mediterranean Stew, Red Wine
3 mile walk.
3 mile bike ride.
Sleep: Only 6 hours
Thanks for the message and words of encouragement Evita!
Originally Posted by Evita
No conozco Argentina, pero tengo muchas ganas de irme por allí un rato...
And yes, it's a struggle here... how can I turn down a home made paella !?
Thus far, I think the best thing that I've done has been taking up cooking. I've already gotten a bit of a reputation amongst my friends as "the chef" Little do they know that everything I cook is Primal! hahaha it's strange, no one seems to ask ¿Hay pan? when I'm cooking..
Day 2 Results:
Much better than day 1. No dairy, no booze. Unfortunately, no shovel glove and not enough sleep.
Breakfast- Double espresso, black.
Lunch - Esqueixada de Bacalao (mmm heavenly...), 1/2 oven roasted rabbit
Snack - 50 grams pork rinds fried in their own lard
Dinner - "Skillet" made with 2 slices iberian bacon (no nitrates, nothing, ingredients: bacon, sea salt) and artesan chorizo (from Iberian pigs, ingredients: Iberian pork, paprika, garlic), 1 hot pepper, onions, and 4 "free range" eggs, all cooked in the bacon/chorizo fat. MMMM
Exercise: 3 Miles walking, 3 miles biking.
Day 3. O M G. Wow.
This isn't as easy as I thought, and writing it here makes it even worse.
Everything was going well until about 7 pm.
Then I had an alumni wine tasting with my grad school. Tried 5 types of wine, then... Strawberry Mojito. 2. The horror! If that wasn't enough, NACHOS.
I feel physically bloated today.
Let's see if I can't stick to my guns a little better here.
It can be quite tough to really get started, and you will probably experience more slip-ups.. The thing is to just get over it, move along. A small slip-up is no reason to start chowing down all sorts of non-primal stuff.. Oh, and when you do find yourself eating something you "shouldn't", then make sure that at least you enjoy it! Slowly, mindfully. So at least you don't eat too much. A tiny bit of guilt may be good in order not to do it too often, but too much guilt just leads to an emotional roller-coaster. Keep grokking!