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
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!
On Primal I’ve gained about 10 pounds – 10 pounds of muscle that is.
Over the two past years, I’ve been trying to increase my strength and add muscle mass.
The first year, even though I was lifting heavy weights, I didn’t add much, if any, muscle. I was eating a low-fat, low carb diet (which was extremely flavorless and hard to maintain) and just got plain old skinny. Not toned. Not jacked. Just skinny.
I then of course fell off that diet and put on a bit of fat, which is when my fiance and I decided to start Primal.
Since starting Primal about a year ago, I’ve seen the scale jump up 10 pounds, but I look lean and more muscled than I’ve ever looked before. And my strength has also really increased over the past year.
It actually increased so much that two months ago I decided to train for my first powerlifting competition.
When I started training, I was told by another trainer at the gym, that I would need to eat carbs, like bread and stuff, if I expected to really see results.
I just shook my head and kept eating Primally and my numbers just kept going up. And actually the couple of times I did cheat, I had my worst workouts EVER the day after!
Although throughout the two months I planned to compete, I didn’t actually enter the MA/RI Powerlifting State Championship meet until right before the deadline. I was super nervous and could think of a bazillion reasons why I wasn’t ready.
One of my reasons not to compete was because my training wasn’t true powerlifting workouts. The second reason was that I’d gained a bit of weight throughout the training and especially over Thanksgiving.
But I’d committed to doing it, so I refused to back out. That last week before the competition, I threw in some longer fasts and only ate meat and vegetables. Everyone at the gym told me that I shouldn’t fast and that I needed to eat “real” food.
I didn’t listen to them when it came to fasting because I was eating real food just later in the day. Delicious meals like pulled pork, oxtail, rib-eye and chili.
And I dropped every ounce of fat that I needed to and felt super strong on the day of the competition. (I also did throw in some potatoes the day before and the day of the competition just to feel extra energized.)
Anyway, on the day of the competition I sat there in my wrestling unisuit, with no equipment and no belt, eating my Primal snacks (potatoes, apples, macadamia nuts and 100% grass-fed whole milk yogurt and protein) while everyone else sported some sort of equipment and chowed down on peanut butter banana sandwiches, protein bars, candy and Gatorade.
I definitely felt slightly out of place, but my fiance thought it was pretty “gnarly” and “bad-ass” that I didn’t wear a belt or use chalk or anything that lifters were supposed to use.
And the meet was a success even though I didn’t lift as much as I had in practice. I won both my weight class and received the MA/RI Powerlifting State Championship award for Best Lifter – Women’s Raw Division (PDF).
The Best Lifter award is a measure of relative strength, which means that this Primal Powerlifter, weighing in at 118, was the strongest woman in the Raw division at the meet!
I was thrilled to receive the award! And so was my fiance. He also ended up loving the fact that I kicked all of their butts while eating Primally. He liked it so much that he encouraged me to send my success story in to you! Actually he was SO excited that he told you I’d won when we saw you in the Boston airport. 🙂
(Here is a video of the competition if you want to check it out!)