Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
30 Dec

Ignoring the Naysayers

Camzin is from South Africa. When she moved to America, the Standard American Diet greeted her with open arms. Today I get to share with you her journey to overcome flawed conventional wisdom, the world of carbs, and the naysayers.

If you have your own Primal Blueprint success story and you’d like to share it with me and the community please contact me here. Have a wonderful Thursday, everyone, and thanks for reading!

Dear Mark,

My story begins when I stopped doing gymnastics as a teenager. I had practiced 20-40 hours a week for three years as a gymnast before my family and I moved to America. When we moved here there was no gymnastics facility around and we settled into an American diet of large portions and lots of carbs. I found gym workouts boring and tiresome, and consequently my activity levels also declined. I steadily gained weight over the next four years.

When I was getting ready to return to South Africa last December to visit my family, I started working out six days a week and counting calories to try and lose some weight. In the “before” pictures I had already lost around five pounds, a feat that took me three months to do. At my peak, I weighed 185 lbs. I couldn’t go for a leisurely walk without getting out of breath, which was scary since I used to be able to do six hours of gymnastics practice and have energy afterward. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t regain my original level of fitness but was able to eek my weight down to 170 lbs.

This was my increasingly depressing and frustrating story until August of this year. A friend of mine told me about Primal and I laughed at her, saying I could never do it (I used to choose restaurants based on the complimentary dinner bread they provided). But after seeing the changes that started in her I decided to “try” Primal at the end of August. When I told people about the journey I was about to embark on I received a lot of negative feedback. I was told that I was joining a cult, that this was B.S., and that I should consult a dietitian before I cut out things like processed foods. Fortunately, I ignored the naysayers and I lost about 10 lbs my first month and felt better than I had in years. I was hooked.

I then bought the cookbook and got cooking. My brother went Primal with me in September and my parents in late November. I included before and after pictures for my whole family for this reason, they are already starting to look better even after a few weeks.

Primal blew me away. When I started counting calories my goals was to get down to a size 4 (from an 8), 155 lbs (from 185), and to be a size medium. I remained a size 8, got to 175, and remained a large on this method. Since being Primal I am now a size 0 (which is loosening by the day), I weigh 135 (a full 20 lbs lower than I could have ever imagined), and I am a small or extra small in all of my clothing. My skin has cleared up and I have so much more energy now. So much so that I actually feel the urge to exercise and I find exercise fun.

I once again practice gymnastics and have the energy to hike, run, play, and frolic. This is the first winter where I have not gotten sick as well. I know that my journey has not been as drastic as some of the other success stories on here, but I am just so grateful and impressed with the amazing life I now enjoy. I cannot begin to thank Primal enough for the transformation it has caused in my life. Thank you so much. A special thanks to Anders (who submitted “Bringing Home the Bacon“) and Emma for recommending this to me. Grok on!

– Camzin M

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Haters = Motivators

    Andrew wrote on December 30th, 2010
  2. Well done Caz! I wish I was having the same success with my family. My mom has been doing herballife for about a year now and she swears she’ll continue for the rest of her life. I just can’t help but think how unhealthy it is to only eat food one meal a day. Plus the expense. Anyway well done and I wish you continued success. Grok on girl!

    Gorm wrote on December 30th, 2010
  3. Camzin! super job – congrats on re-becoming a “babe” (meant respectfully and with – ahem – admiration… 😉 )

    moksha wrote on December 30th, 2010
  4. I’m guessing Camzin is rather tall because at 5’3″, 135lb. is a size 6-8 for me.

    Congrats on the weightloss…you look great!

    Kim wrote on December 30th, 2010
    • Awesome! Thank you (and all the others) for sharing.

      I would also like to know people’s heights. As a 6′ female, I can’t even imagine a size 8, let alone a size 0!

      curiousalexa wrote on December 31st, 2010
      • i believe she’s 5’8″ :) (im her friend she mentioned)

        Emma wrote on January 1st, 2011
        • Hey Emma :)

          Camzin wrote on January 10th, 2011
  5. You look amazing! And you are an inspiration to us all!

    Patricia wrote on December 30th, 2010
  6. You look fabulous a true inspiration. Weird though, your dad looks familar to me did your family move to the states? He looks like someone I worked with.

    karen wrote on December 30th, 2010
  7. Way to go Camzen! Thanks for getting even more converts to our cult! (j/k)

    Clint White wrote on December 30th, 2010
  8. MY GOD you’re gorgeous! :)

    Maria wrote on December 30th, 2010
  9. Congratulations on your weight loss and being able to inspire your family to do the same. Convincing family members and friends is not an easy task. Wonderful story.

    Anne wrote on December 30th, 2010
  10. Congratulations!!!! :)

    Lindsey wrote on December 30th, 2010
  11. Awesome story!! My husband and I had started primal, and then the holidays came and we unfortunately got back into our old eating habits. Needless to say we both gained weight and have been sick for a while now. :( Plus, my insulin needs have skyrocketed again (I’m a type I diabetic). We are going back to primal tomorrow!

    Erika S wrote on December 30th, 2010
  12. Woo Camzin! You’re awesome, and thanks for the shoutout :). See ya monday!

    Anders wrote on December 31st, 2010
    • what he said :)

      Emma wrote on December 31st, 2010
  13. Wow, what a way to change. Amazingly done. And the changes in your family are terrific too. I’m so glad that they came on board with you.

    Have a great new year everyone.

    San wrote on December 31st, 2010
  14. Hey, someone else from South Africa!
    Great job!

    Sean A wrote on December 31st, 2010
    • Natuurlik!

      Camzin wrote on January 10th, 2011
  15. Fantastic, Camzen! You look great!


    Kane Augustus wrote on December 31st, 2010
  16. This is amazing!! I love that Camzen’s family joined in!! Thanks for the photos!!

    gilliebean wrote on December 31st, 2010
  17. Camzin- you look great! Awesome job! BTW, your brother is damn cute (after the haircut)! LOL

    Michelle wrote on December 31st, 2010
  18. I want your hairstyle! lol. I find it interesting that now that you look like you feel more comfortable in your body you decided to cut your hair off into a short, sassy, awesome style! And, yes, congrats! :)

    Dawn wrote on December 31st, 2010
  19. FABULOUS!!! Remember…”processed food” is a contradiction in terms. How can something that has been turned into a slurry, baked, packaged, then sent down a conveyor belt be classified as “food”? You look great, but your internal health is even more important…and you look healthy!

    Cj wrote on January 2nd, 2011
  20. I’m blown away by the pictures. You look trully amazing.
    Also, major kudos to you for leading by example and getting your whole family to join you in this exciting journey.

    chocolatechip69 wrote on January 3rd, 2011
  21. Terrific story and transformation.

    Would you please add a typical day of eating of the people who submit their story? It’s intereting and enlightening to see what other people eat on this WOE

    Daniel wrote on January 7th, 2011
    • Today I grabbed two pieces of fruit on my way out the door to rock climbing, I ate some almond butter during my workout (I love almond butter) and then a lettuce wrapped burger (since I was away from home).

      I usually do egg-something (bacon + eggs, omelet, hard boiled, etc.) for breakfast, leftovers for lunch and something hearty and meaty for dinner. I love roasts, baked chicken, and stuffed veggies.

      Camzin wrote on January 10th, 2011
  22. Wow, what an amazing story! and all this started in AUGUST 2010?? amazing.

    You’re whole family looks better.

    Plus you and your brother both look hotter with short hair.


    Sophie L wrote on February 8th, 2011
  23. Primal has definitely treated you well. You look divine! These pictures blew my friends away and led many, including myself and my dad, to start Primal. You make an amazing Groka! 😛

    Starfish wrote on February 11th, 2011
  24. You’re so, so beautiful…
    And totally could be Natalie Portman’s sister.

    Patrícia wrote on June 14th, 2011
  25. Consult with a dietitian before quitting processed foods? Wow, unbelievable. That’s almost as bad as saying consult with a dietitian before eating leafy greens. What is the world coming to?

    grisly atoms wrote on October 9th, 2015
  26. Hello, I just started and I was wondering the time frame of your before and after pictures? And how did you stay motivated to eat primal 100%?

    Madelyn wrote on March 25th, 2016

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2016 Mark's Daily Apple

Subscribe to the Newsletter and Get a Free Copy
of Mark Sisson's Fitness eBook and more!