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!
This Primal Blueprint Real Life Story was submitted a few months ago during the annual 30-Day Challenge.
I have been following a Primal Blueprint diet for the last 9 months and the results for me have been amazing! I want to share my success story with you.
One year ago I was 34 years old, 5’7″, 177 lbs and wearing a size 16 jeans. I was really not happy with myself. Other than the extra weight, I was a pretty healthy person. I had been very active with the Weston A. Price organization and lifestyle for the previous 6 years so I had already eliminated most processed foods from my diet long ago. I bought a grass-fed cow every year to stock my freezer, I belonged to a raw-milk herdshare, I diligently soaked and fermented all the grains I ate and bought all my vegetables through local farmers I was friends with. I even had my own backyard chickens. Even so, my weight had been slowly climbing over the last year and when I reached that high of 177 and really evaluated how I felt I knew something had to change.
At that time I had a very progressive friend who had lost a lot of weight recently and overcome health problems by adjusting her diet to gluten free/specific carbohydrate (SCD) and taking up running. I was happy with what I was eating, I didn’t want to change but I was intrigued by the running and the 5k/10ks she was doing so I decided to give running a try. I was never really into exercise before, I typically felt tired and unmotivated a lot but this time I wanted to do something to change. I started in September 2010 with Couch to 5K program and I fell in love with running. I felt good doing it and I continually amazed myself with my increasing distances. I completed my first 5K in late October 2010 and immediately had fantasies of myself crossing the line on 10ks and half marathons. By the end of December I was running about 4 days a week and completed my first 10K distance. I was excited with my progress, but even with over three months of running under my belt I had barely lost any weight (only 5 lbs) and I was still wearing a size 16 (maybe I could squeeze into a 14) jean.
Then I got injured. Just after Christmas, after three days of continuous running on some hilly routes, I suddenly developed an inflamed tendon in one ankle and I could barely walk for a week. The doctors said it was an “overuse” injury (I didn’t actually roll it or anything) and I needed to stay off of it for eight weeks. This was a crushing blow to my new runner lifestyle. My plans of signing up for that first half marathon in April of 2011 just went out the window. I was pretty bummed. So as I was sitting around in January with more time to think, I heard that same progressive friend of mine talk about this Primal Blueprint  book she had read and how great it was. Once again I was intrigued by her description and I went and got a copy for myself.
That, of course, was one of the best purchases I ever made. I am a biologist by trade and I loved the scientific nature of the book. It made total sense to me. I immediately started following the Primal Blueprint diet as soon as I finished the book. For me, it wasn’t that difficult of a change. As I mentioned before I was already eating WAPF style (unprocessed, grass-fed, homemade, whole foods), all I had to do was quit the grains and the sugar I was still eating. I made the change and I also purchased the Primal Blueprint Cookbook  for recipe ideas. For the first 30 days I meticulously counted the macronutrients (protein, fat, carbs, calories) of every thing I ate to make sure I was staying in the recommended level of carbs and calories for weight loss. It was a pain in the butt to calculate all that every day especially when you are making a dish from scratch but I really wanted to do it right.
My experience with Primal Blueprint has been nothing but positive. The weight seemed to just shed off effortlessly. I was not exercising when I started because my ankle was still messed up but it didn’t seem to matter, I kept losing. My initial goal was to get down to 140 lbs by June 2011 and I reached that goal no problem. My biggest “complaint” was that I had to buy a new pair of jeans every month because the old ones were falling off! I absolutely love Primal food! I do not miss bread or pasta at all really. I have found new and better things to eat that make me feel good. I will make coconut flour pancakes with nut butter and eggs for breakfast, homemade cream of broccoli soup for lunch, a big pot of bison chili for dinner and then have a few squares of super dark chocolate with fresh raspberries for dessert and I am in heaven. Who could ask for anything more!?
Nine months into my Primal Blueprint journey I am 35 years old, 138 lbs, and down to a size 8 jeans. In July I decided to focus on building strength and toning muscle and I kicked up the exercise. Exercise has historically not been my favorite thing, so to keep my motivation up I hired a personal trainer to keep me on track for my LHT (Lift Heavy Things) workouts twice a week. I still run maybe once a week or so but I am not obsessive about it as I once was. And it is interesting to note, now that I am doing strength training the running is so much easier to keep up with. Before, if I had skipped a few days of running I would have struggled to get back to the same distance/pace. Now, I can skip a week and it doesn’t seem to be a big deal. I can still run a 5k on the fly 🙂 I feel amazing and I am so happy with the changes I have made in my life. I want everyone to know that you can do it too! I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
P.S. I want to share this interesting little story… for my birthday a couple weeks ago I splurged a little and after dinner went out for ice cream which I hadn’t done for a while. I ordered one scoop of ice cream and I honestly could not finish it. I have never ever in my life not been able to finish a scoop of ice cream. In fact I have been known to eat a whole pint of Ben & Jerry’s on more than one occasion in the past. This time I got about 2/3 through the scoop and started to feel jittery and light headed and just weird, I had to stop. I just thought that was so amazing, I can actually HEAR my body now. I can FEEL the normal physiological response to such foods rather then being muted to that response from a lifetime of consuming excess carbs and sugar. Such feedback makes me feel alive and aware and supports my belief that I am on the right path.