Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

Tell Me More
Stay Connected
December 11, 2015

Saying Goodbye to Constant Hunger, Lethargy and Frustration

By Guest
37 Comments

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

real_life_stories_stories-1-2I really don’t have too many before pictures, as you can imagine I avoided the camera, not liking the way I looked. I have ever so many after pictures, as now I’ll pose at the first sign of a camera because I like the way I look so much!

My “before” picture (below) was taken in early 2011 at age 59, with my first granddaughter. For most of my life, I had always been slender and fit, being 5’5 1/2″ and weighing around 125. I’d always had normal cholesterol counts and normal blood pressure. Apart from occasional colds, I was in excellent health and didn’t think much about what I ate.

beforeLooking back, things started slowly changing for me in my early 50’s. I was very slowly gaining weight, and gaining it around my waist. I probably only gained about 5 lbs a year, but it was steady, and by the time this picture was taken, I weighed 140 lbs and had started dressing in loose clothing to downplay my increasing waist line. I didn’t like it. I didn’t like the way I looked and the way I felt. I was tired, didn’t feel comfortable with myself and I was frustrated.

I decided to go on a calorie restricted diet and bought processed diet food to have on hand. It was such a bad idea on so many levels! I was constantly hungry, as lethargic as ever and lost only two pounds, which were immediately regained when I was too hungry to stand it anymore, and ate normally. Is this the normal aging process, I wondered? I come from a long lived family and steadily gaining 5 lbs a year for the next 25 years could end up very badly for me!

Unbeknownst to me, my son, in his early thirties, was not happy with his weight and lack of energy. His wife had also had problems with high cholesterol counts since she was a teenager, and was having a hard time controlling it. My son started to do internet searches and came across Mark Sisson’s information on the Primal lifestyle. My son researched it thoroughly and started the diet during the summer of 2011, and when I went to visit him and my daughter-in-law the following October, my son had completed approximately three months of paleo and was wildly enthusiastic about it.

His wife saw her cholesterol levels drop almost to normal. His weight dropped to where it was in high school and his energy level greatly increased. I have to be honest, I didn’t research paleo, I didn’t even know much about it. My son simply instructed me that this was the way I was to eat from now on!

Knowing how much research my son did on anything he engaged in, I immediately got the list from him on how to eat, took it home and got started. The first six months I was off and on, and not entirely committed, but I started losing weight, even though I was never left hungry. Then, I ended up going full paleo.

afterThis “after” picture was taken, January 2014. I feel so comfortable with the way I look. I feel like the person I am inside is reflected by my outside appearance. And, interestingly, at my checkup last May, my cholesterol levels remain normal as does my blood pressure, but my weight is 125 (and it’s been stable at 125 for close to a year now) and I’m no longer 5’5 1/2.” I’m now 5’6.1.” No, paleo didn’t make me grow, but with my increased energy level I decided to start taking yoga classes (which I’d always wanted to learn) and evidently I’ve been slumping my whole life, I now stand up straight and have discovered that I’m taller than I’ve always thought I was!

Sidenote – One day at yoga our instructor stopped us and said, “Ladies, don’t think that doing all this exercise will change your body if you continue to eat bad food. That’s all I have to say about that.” But I knew just what she meant, that eating the standard American diet with white flour, white sugar, additives, preservatives, low calorie, high starch foods, devoid of any nutritional value, would (as I had found out before the paleo), leave you hungry and continually gaining weight.

Now, you might ask, do I think I will continue indefinitely with the primal lifestyle? At my last checkup the doctor suggested I be tested for Celiac’s Disease as it runs in my family. Although I’d never been aware of having any symptoms, I tested positive, which means no more gluten containing products, ever. And I’m so okey with that – a disease that makes you unable to eat junk food is not a bad thing! So yes, I’m following the paleo diet and lifestyle and there’s no going back, which I wouldn’t want to do as I feel good, like the way I look and have energy to thoroughly enjoy my beloved granddaughter.

Catherine

TAGS:  guest post

Subscribe to the Newsletter

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

Leave a Reply

37 Comments on "Saying Goodbye to Constant Hunger, Lethargy and Frustration"

avatar

Sort by:   newest | oldest
Melissa
Melissa
1 year 9 months ago

Thanks so much for sharing! Have been waiting patiently each week for a “lady in the prime of her life” to share (sounds so much better than mature/older etc etc) You truly look in the prime of your life and I’m more encouraged now to start my primal journey. And enjoy that beautiful grandbaby! 🙂

Julie
Julie
1 year 9 months ago

+1 I’m a 58 year old woman and need the inspiration!

carter
carter
1 year 9 months ago

52 here, and my numbers are your numbers…5’5 1/2″, decades at 125, suddenly hovering around 140. I’m in the beginning stage of recommitting to a primal lifestyle by way of AIP paleo. I think I also need to try more yoga so I can find that extra 6/10th of an inch!

Thanks for the inspiration.

Kelda
1 year 9 months ago

Ditto, 48 and was 125 lbs, 5 5.5, now up at 140 lbs… time to really get back to strict Primal although I’ve never erred with wheat products for years but those ‘gluten-free’ labels have been appearing too frequently…

Laurbie
Laurbie
1 year 9 months ago

I thank you for sharing your journey. I’m at the same place(ish) you were “before” and will be thrilled when I reach the same “after.”

Diane
Diane
1 year 9 months ago

+1! Inspired to see there is hope.

Lydia
Lydia
1 year 7 months ago

Looks so good. I feel over weight at 140 pounds too (in fact am probably a bit over that) and it’s so hard to lose any at my age/stage compared if I were 200 pounds.

Nice to see it worked for you.

Paleo4life
Paleo4life
1 year 9 months ago

Great story — thank you for sharing. It’s great to see someone else that has not accepted the slow slog to decrepitude as “normal” aging! Grok on!

Donna
Donna
1 year 9 months ago

I love stories of “prime time” paleos also. Thanks for sharing your story and enjoy your grandchildren for a very long and healthy time.

Kelly
Kelly
1 year 9 months ago
Great job! You look wonderful! My question is this: did they instruct you that you must eat gluten for three months before your test? I was told the test would not work unless you ate the equivalent of three slices of bread for three months before the test, which is why I never had the test done. There’s nothing in the world that would convince me to eat gluten voluntarily for that length of time after having learned (through paleo/primal) that it makes me feel terrible, my gums bleed and my hands and feet go numb when I eat it.… Read more »
Margaret
Margaret
1 year 9 months ago

I’m getting tested for celiac next week and so have been following the guidelines from the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center: 1/2 slice of bread or a cracker for 12 weeks (for blood testing) or 2 weeks (for biopsy).

Your symptoms are on the list of celiac symptoms, by the way.

Dr. Dana Leigh Lyons
1 year 9 months ago

Such a beautiful story, Catherine! I love hearing when people share paleo eating and lifestyle patterns with family and loved ones. So wonderful that you were open to receiving such a gift from your son and can now share it with your granddaughter.

Wonderful too that you discovered yoga (and new “height”) in the process! I used to be shorter than my mom and younger sisters…but now, at age 40 and after 14 or so years of yoga, I’m taller than them:)

Pastor Dave
1 year 9 months ago

Catherine– Wow– will you marry me? Oh wait, I’m already married. Just kidding–but what a great story and the results for you and your son and daughter-in-law speak to all of us.

You look wonderful! Congrats!

Big deal
Big deal
1 year 9 months ago

Bigamy is not a laughing matter pastor dave.

Pastor Dave
Pastor Dave
1 year 9 months ago

A Christian without a sense of humor though is more tragic than the toungue in cheek– as long as it’s your own tongue in your own cheek.

hello
hello
1 year 9 months ago

Humor is the mind’s gateway to an evil act. Your mind commits a crime long before your body. Purge any wicked thoughts now is my advice Pasta Dave.

Pastor Dave
Pastor Dave
1 year 9 months ago

Especially if you have 2 mothers – in -law!

Lighten up– glad though you have done well on the program–

Andrea
Andrea
1 year 9 months ago

Well said!

Elizabeth
1 year 9 months ago

Wow, Catherine! You look amazing and it sounds like you feel that way too. And how great that your son and daughter in law are doing it too. And you are all setting a great example for your granddaughter.

Paul
Paul
1 year 9 months ago

The ‘before’ photo is typical of many women Catherine’s age-by no stretch of the imagination seriously overweight, much less obese, but still rather thick around the midriff. IMO speaking from my own experience, the majority of over 50’s, in fact the majority of over 40’s male and female, would be well advised to at least massively cut down on grains, if not remove them from the dietary entirely, and follow a low carb Paleo or Atkins type diet with plenty of leafy green vegetables.

Whitney
Whitney
1 year 9 months ago

Love it Catherine! Great work!

2Rae
2Rae
1 year 9 months ago
Wow, your story is much like mine. I hit menopause at 37 and by 40 I was “done” except for the hot flashes that lasted another 5 or so years. Then at about 5 pounds every 15 months I got up to the 160’s on the scale. I had never been more than “5 pounds” over my goal weight – which was about 5 pounds below what everyone else thought I should weigh. Ate ANYTHING, active, when I had to run to the store I ran, no problems. Then perimenopause hit and nothing was the same. I could not lose… Read more »
Maggie
Maggie
1 year 9 months ago

Ugh, you reversed menopausal weight gain only to be beat up by cortisol fueled weight gain. That must be really frustrating. I hope you figure it out.

Heather
Heather
1 year 9 months ago

Hi, unexplained weight gain can also be caused by the thyroid, maybe a blood test to check (including antibodies), may rule that out. Stress is huge, but in women so is thyroid issues. Hope you find your way..

Christie
Christie
1 year 9 months ago

What a beautiful woman! Thanks for sharing.

Vanessa
Vanessa
1 year 9 months ago

Fantastic Catherine! I’m only 5′, I wonder if yoga would help me.

Krista
Krista
1 year 9 months ago

Can I suggest we all start using the word ‘level’ for our age?

Because ‘I’m at Level 60’ sounds badass.

Just a thought! I told my ‘Level 95’ year old grandmother this and she is in!

Mrs Rathbone
Mrs Rathbone
1 year 9 months ago

LOVE that idea! Spread the word now someone please. 🙂

Kelda
1 year 9 months ago

Brilliant idea 🙂

Wendy
Wendy
1 year 9 months ago

Wow! Nicely done. You look great. Quite inspiring indeed.

wildgrok
wildgrok
1 year 9 months ago

I read other posts with the same theme, but I have to say it also:

Will you marry a nice primal guy, 63 years old, hey … I look younger 🙂

Beautiful story thanks for posting!

HillyM
HillyM
1 year 9 months ago

Yay for “prime time” paleo! You look fabulous, and more importantly you feel fabulous. What a great way to stay healthy to spend time with the grandies!

HillyM
HillyM
1 year 9 months ago

Ha Krista – I’m in ……..signed “Level 57”

OnTheBayou
OnTheBayou
1 year 9 months ago

Granny, you are hot!

Signed, Grand Father

PJ
PJ
1 year 9 months ago

Thank you and thank the commenters!!! You kept me from going out for a six pack.

Level58 here!

Bobby
Bobby
1 year 8 months ago

Very well written story.I did a double take on your age, your diligence has turned the clock back by decades. I’ve been doing primal for 3 years now, the biggest shocker has been the increase in vitality and overall happiness. My 24 year old son now longer wants to take me on in pull up contests. Keep sharing your enthusiasm and love of life, the world is transformed by example. You rock.

Rach
Rach
1 year 7 months ago

You are my inspiration.

wpDiscuz