Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What is this Paleo Thing and Why did I chose it?

 Google Paleo and I guarantee you can find a MUCH MORE scientific explanation than one I'm about to give you. However this blog is intended to be informative to the most simplistic idea, so, here it goes.
 Paleo reaches back to studies done on our ancestors. The hunter, gather type. They followed the herds of animals, walking miles, for food and water living off the land. Sure, they didn't live as long as we did (argument one "they didn't live long even though they ate this way") however they were exposed to more elements. Colds, weather, and oh that thing where you were prey to wild animals. Thank goodness we don't have to worry about that now. But yes they ate animal meat and plants whether it were vegetables or fruit. Nothing came from a factory and it wasn't food like product, it was food.

To really dive in here is Robb Wolf's Website
Robb Wolfs What is the Paleo Diet

Fast forward a few centuries and here we are. Our food comes out of factories made of chemicals, boxes, and bags. It's the time of convenience! Everything is geared towards mass production and financial earnings. Who cares what it's made of, we have more than we need and at a good price too! ...yet look around.

We are the worse off, health wise, than ever before. Here are some health statistics from the Center For Disease Control and Prevention:

More than one-third (34.9% or 78.6 million) of U.S. adults are obese. [Read abstract Journal of American Medicine (JAMA)]
  • Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of preventable death. [Read guidelines]
  • The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the U.S. was $147 billion in 2008 U.S. dollars; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than those of normal weight

  • Yet, Instead of doing something to PREVENT this we are merely treating it. We get sick, we go to the doctor, we get a pill. We fight it off, get sick again get a pill. NOW don't think I'm knocking modern science but, let me tell you a secret about our body What we eat has a MUCH BIGGER effect on how we function than we could POSSIBLY IMAGINE and I am LIVING PROOF.

    To really dig deep:

    66% of us are overweight, 33% are considered obese, and those numbers are only getting worse.

    Do you feel tired? Run Down? Have you drank any water lately?
    Are you fatigued all the time? have a hard time sleeping? how much sugar was in that last meal?
    Do you always feel super swollen when you've just eaten a meal? much wheat/bread like products did you have?

    It's amazing. We really think we know our bodies but it actually has lots up his or her sleeves.

    I wasn't obese when I started this by any means but something was off.
    I was CONSTANTLY eating and not getting full, constantly working out not loosing weight or gaining muscle.
    I even thought I was somewhat diabetic. My energy levels fluctuated so much, even to the point where I went and got 15 blood work tests done. I just knew something wasn't right. FUNNY enough it wasn't anything genetic, it was what the poor energy sources I was giving my system then over using it to the point where I was running on nothing by carb, starch , and sugar with a side of vegetables and a handful of meat sources.

    Paleo, to me, was like cleaning out my pipes. I had all this junk in my body and it was pulling me down. I couldn't go more than 2-3 hours without a crash feeling like I HAD TO EAT !! FEED THE GREMLIN!
    Giving up sugary foods and bread made me realize it was those that was causing my yo yo like energy spikes..."oh I'm tired here, let me eat a cookie"...2 hours later "OMG I"M GOING TO DIE I"M SO TIRED" ....
      so on and so forth....

    So, in a nutshell, Copied from Nom Nom Paleo's Website, here is a good explanation of what the Paleo Lifestyle (noticed I never use the word DIET) is.

    Eat whole, unprocessed, nutrient-dense, nourishing foods. Prioritize grass fed and pastured meats and eggs, wild-caught seafood, and vegetables. Enjoy fruit, nuts, and seeds in moderation.
    • Avoid foods that will harm us by causing systemic inflammation, wrecking our guts, or derailing our natural metabolic processes. Abstain from toxic, pro-inflammatory foods like gluten-containing grains, legumes, sugar, and the laboratory-concocted Frankenfoods found in the middle aisles of your neighborhood supermarket.

    One fact that still is pretty laughable is the food pyramid, the old one that is. Do you guys remember that?

    Here is a food pyramid from the 1980's. We all remember this right? Something that kind of really stood out to me in William Davis's " Wheat Belly"

    "The sad truth of the proliferation (aka rapid increase in numbers) of wheat products in the American diet parallels the expansion of our waists . Advice to cut fat and cholesterol intake and replace the calories with whole grains that was issued by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute through it's National Cholesterol Education Program in 1985 coincides precisely with the start of a sharp upward climb in body weight for men and women . Ironically , 1985 also marks the year when the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) began tracking body weight statistics, tidily documenting the explosion in obesity and diabetes that began that very year".

    ....crazy...maybe this whole frankensteined bread movement isn't good....

    ...more on Wheat/Gluten later. That itself is a WHOLE HUGE post ....

    Paleo may seem highly restrictive at first but here is my tip, don't, I repeat, do not go COLD turkey. Do not be like a lot of the TV shows you see and throw everything out. To me, that is a huge no no.
    Search Paleo Meals on Pinterest, find something simple to make for dinner ( Hamburger patties on lettuce with avocado and tomato's is one of my go to meals) and go from there.  I always try to KISS new situations...aka KEEP IT SIMPLE SILLY. You don't have to go and cook gourmet meals the first week.. NO, this will overwhelm you and make you want to just eat a tub of cookie dough.

    In my next blog post I plan on posting tips on how to transition into Paleo so KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR THAT.

    If you read my introduction you have a little info on WHY I chose to do this but to review I'll go quickly.
    I had a hard time at work, especially on my 12-8:30 shifts staying full and focused. I wasn't lifting or running as well as I knew I could, and I was just ready to take things to the next level. Around Thanksgiving I saw my gym was going to start a Paleo Challenge for the month of January. I'm not very good at keeping new habits around so I knew if this was something I wanted to do I would need to do research . After doing so, I realized this was something I wanted to do. I slowly transitioned in cutting out something every week, adding more and more meals, and slowly getting rid of things in my kitchen that didn't serve my health. (MORE ON THAT LATER)

    Paleo has been the BEST thing I've ever done for my fitness.

    because I gave up bread, cookies, and meals out of box.

    My body AND YOURS is worth more than a craving. Sometimes I have to remind myself that when I've hit a moment of weakness this challenge, but everyday I wake up knowing I am worth it.

    Thanks for reading!
    Stay tuned for more posts on this challenge!

    Tuesday, January 26, 2016

    Paleo Challenge turned Lifestyle-An introductiom

    My Introduction
    To see more posts about my challenge/lifestyle click the links below!

    Have you ever heard the term skinny fat?

    That was me.
    Looking at me you would have thought I was in shape. I ate "healthy", but wasn't able to do much. I couldn't run and couldn't hike without heavy breathing and knee braces on both legs. I was fed up with being weak

    By March 2015
    I was running 3-4 times a week and doing Crossfit 3-4 times a week. Unfortunately, I was the heaviest I've ever been and wasn't getting any stronger or faster. I was frustrated.
    I wasn't until I later saw this pictures of myself that really gave me a wakeup call . Before I move to California I had a body analysis at my gym. I was 138 lbs, 24% body fat...yikes

    Then it came time for a move off the Hawaiian Island to southern California where I found an amazing Crossfit Gym.  Not soon after joining the gym, while training for my half ironman, I wrecked pretty hard on my bike. Again, super frusturated. I was very limited with a lot of the weight training at the gym, yes I still went.  However, my gym was amazing. They worked all around my modifications and gave me great workouts while my wrist/hand was in a brace. After about a month of still having to modify I realized I wasn't getting any stronger even with my leg lifting. I was stuck at the same weights for weeks. The biggest tell was that after a day or two of not working out my muscle gain would leave, and I wasn't recovering from my wrist injury as fast as I thought I should. I approached one of my coaches and one of the first things he asked was "how much protein are you eating". Granted I tracked all my food but only for calories sake. I shrugged and said I didn't pay much attention to that. He told me with all the training/running I do, I should be eating 1gram of protein per pound. I was shocked. Eating 140 grams of protein seemed like a lot! He told me eat normal that day then the next day try to get up to around 120-130 grams then over the week try to hit 140 every day.
    That day was also the day I found out that starting Jan 2. my gym was going to do a Paleo challenge. It involved BMI test as well as a month of eating paleo. I was intrigued and did research the following week of what exactly that diet entails. I've had friends do the Whole 30 but knew there was no way I was strong enough to do such a thing. My slow transition to Paelo began around right before Thanksgiving. I started using MyfitnessPal to track everything I ate to make sure I was eating the right amount of protien as well as slowly making my meals more and more Paelo.

    As my meals changed, I noticed something. My skin, it was glowing and my adult acne was disappearing. My hanger (yes angry hunger ) was disappearing. I could work more than 2 hours and not feel like I was going to have a hunger attack. One of the best things that could have happened was I finally experienced the feeling of being full!

    Before Paleo this was my routine:
    Wake up: eat cereal
    2 hours later eat coffee, toast eggs, and an orange
    1 hour before work I'd have a turkey sandwhich (whole wheat bread and turkey meat with cheese is healthy, right?) with an apple, a serving size of chips, and yogurt and an orange/strawberries.
    On the way to work grab the occasional White Chocolate Mocha from Starbucks.
    At work I'd have either another sandwhich or leftovers, while grazing on cookies, yogurt, coffee, and fruit. I would eat sugary items to give me energy to make it between breaks . I would get so tired all of a sudden, rush to the back, and down more sips of my sugary coffee I needed to get me through my shift.
    Home late , so in pops a pizza. I'd topped it with veggies and turkey pepperoni. Not exactly healthy but hey, it has vegetables right?
    Bed snack was either popcorn, a bowl of ice cream or cereal. I worked hard, I deserve a treat right?
    No wonder I was a constant yo yo of emotions and hunger . I dreaded working 8 hour shifts. I just hoped I had enough energy to make it through the shift. Little did I know I was pumping my body full of sugar and nothing that was really nutritional. My crashes were hard and my emotions were all over the place. As I slowly replaced more food items I became more aware of how I felt when I ate certain things.

    I also became more aware of how I looked. My clothes (that I had just purchased in September) were becoming more loose. I don't believe in scales, so I don't have one. I had no clue what my weight was until I had a Body Fat Analysis recently done at my gym. The results from June-January were AMAZING.

    In June 2015 I weighed 140 (my heaviest being 145 earlier that year) 24% Body Fat
    January 2nd 2016 I weighed 138 18% Body Fat
    January 12th no weight no body fat

    My half marathon has gone down from a 2:05 to a 1:48
    My Back squat went from a 115 to a 135
    My dead lift went from a 115 to a 175 :)

    This blog is meant to track my journey through this Paleo Lifestyle . This includes running, crossfit, meals, and or other things in life that Paelo improves.
    I plan to also have Paleo meals tab as well to hopefully inspire as well as learn more about meals that are Paleo Approved.
    Please feel free to ask, comment, or share.
    This is meant to inspire, as well as provoke interest and questions.