So on April 25th I joined a Paleo Challenge at my Crossfit box. I didn’t know too much about Paleo except it was based on what cavemen would eat during the Paleolithic era. I also was not sure how I would do since it prohibits dairy, any form of gluten, rice, soy, legumes, sugar, and corn which is basically what my daily intake consists of. But I’m down to try anything once and I have struggled loosing weight for the past 3 years. So as of April 25th I started eating Paleo.
What does the Paleo Diet consist of?
- Grass fed meat, free range fowl and wild caught fish
- Seasonal fruits and vegetables
- Healthy fats such as nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil, and coconut oil
Not to bad right? Except I ate meat like MAYBE once a day, maybe a banana or strawberry here and there, and ate some veggies, mainly around dinner time. But I thought I was healthy. I have eaten organic/natural/local food for the past few years and haven’t had any fast food in 5 years. But I still was fat. Now that I look at it, all the food I consumed was carbs from gluten, rice, beans, etc. And I work from home all day which means I’m sitting on my butt most the time. No wonder I had a hard time loosing weight. I thought something was wrong with me… maybe a thyroid issue? Age? Years being on birth control? Hormones? I blamed it on everything. Even better, I started developing eczema on my face and haven’t been able to get rid of it. I tried everything, saw a dermatologist and dumped all my face products and makeup. Got all hypoallergenic and sensitive products. Yup… still had eczema.Fantastic… I started feeling hopeless and just wished that one day I would magically lose weight. Which did happen.. when I went Paleo.
The First Week
Did you know you can go through withdrawals when you cut carbs, dairy, and sugar? Well you do. First few days were hard, I had such a bad headache and just overall felt like crap. But our Cave Mama (Jennifer) warned us of this so I just hung on. I missed my Starbucks lattes hardcore. I was up to two a day before I went on this challenge. So even skipping a few days were hard. I also missed my grains, I usually would have oatmeal or cereal for breakfast, and then a sandwich for lunch. And cheese…. boy did I want some of that right then. But I hung on and kept going.
Luckily Jennifer made a Facebook for all of us in the challenge and made a recipe FB. Did you know there is a Paleo alternative to all your favorite meals? Well there is and I’m finding they taste better than the real thing. Paleo Pancakes… AMAZING. I also started feeling better heath wise, no more sluggishness, no more bloat, and I didn’t have a food baby in my belly after I ate. Oh… guess what. I lost 6 pounds after the first week.
Third Week and Beyond
It didn’t take me long to get hooked on eating Paleo. I think waking up day after day with a flat belly was pretty amazing. I felt great… just felt clean and healthier. Another great thing, my face started clearing up. No more acne and hardly any eczema patches on my face. That felt good, it’s been a long time since my face has been totally clear. I started researching more about gluten and how horrible it is for you. After this, I think I definitely have a gluten intolerance. The bloat, stomach issues, eczema, etc all went away when I cut out gluten. Plus, I am just happy and I haven’t felt this good about myself in a long time.
What you eat is pretty important. Just for example, April 1st – April 25th I Crossfitted 4x a week and only dropped maybe a pound. I’m not sure on inches since I didn’t track this at the time. I worked out hard, but then ate horrible also. I did get stronger, but I still was a bloated mess. All my working out wasn’t doing anything since I was sabotaging it with food. But after April 25th… things start changing.
- 1st Week: Lost 6 Pounds
- 4 Weeks: Lost 9 Pounds and 8.75 inches
- 6 Weeks: Lost 10 pounds and 13.25 inches
June 3rd, 2011 our Paleo Challenge ended. And guess what…
I won 3rd place! Weee!!! Out of 42 participants there were 4 female winners and 4 males. I would post our group photo, but not sure if they want to be on my blog haha.
What Did I Win?
Well besides $100 dollars in prize money, I won my life back. I have clear skin. No more food babies or stomach aches. I have muscles and a toned body. I get on the scale and I keep dropping weight and keep loosing inches. I won clothes that have sat in my skinny section of my closet for 3 years that I haven’t been able to fit into.
Yes, that is my ass fitting into size 26 jeans that I haven’t been able to get into for years. My size 2 shorts are fitting quite nicely also and are even getting a little loose.. thank you very much.
So what now?
Am I going to go back to eating what I did before? Oh Hell No. I feel great, why would I give that up? I may be crazy but not that crazy. Shopping for new clothes and feeling good about myself is too good to give up. My workouts have been great and I can feel myself changing every day. We went on vacation recently and it was my first vacation I went to without feeling horrible afterward and gaining 5 pounds. Why? I ate Paleo the entire time and it was easy. A lot of people think doing this is hard, and it’s not. Everywhere you go you can order Paleo if you have to eat out. Be that person, ask for no bread, order extra veggies, hold the cheese. It’s easy. Restaurants don’t mind, trust me I used to work at one. It’s cook to order for a reason. You may get some crazy looks, but screw them. You feel great and they don’t.
Thinking about going Paleo?
Well you should. I plan to turn this blog more into that direction so you will see changes here. I still am a major foodie, that will never change. So I will be posting recipes, information, etc on here. Think you can go Paleo but don’t want to give everything up? Check out Primal. They’re very similar to eating Paleo but allow some more things such as cheese. You can get great results with that also. Plus internet is a wonderful thing. You can find out tons of information and recipes, just google it. Don’t forget to come back to my blog for information, along with all the other random entertaining (or not) stuff I post.
Some of my favorite sites:
- Robb Wolf: Great Resource for anything Paleo
- Everyday Paleo: Amazing Recipes and more
- Paleo Hacks: Great community forum
- Crossfit: If you don’t Crossfit, you really should. You can check out my first experience here, I have gone on a regular basis for almost 3 months now and am in love with it.
I would love to hear about your experience about Paleo or feel free to ask questions. Please check back too because I am going to start posting recipes and resources of where to find Paleo food in Arizona (if you are local). Start doing something for you… you are worth it.