I’m a couple of weeks into eating Paleo and I am feeling Fab.U.Lous.
My body feels cleansed and light and I feel energised. My skin looks brighter. When I started I wondered if I would be able to stick to a Paleo lifestyle, but now I’ve started, I don’t want to give it up.
Live and Learn
I tried Paleo once before, about a year ago but didn’t really tell anyone, which was a bit daft. I lasted a good month before bits of bread and cheese started finding their way into my mouth. The thing that triggered the end of Paleo then was my running. I found I didn’t have enough fuel in the tank and concluded I needed carbs to help me on longer runs. I didn’t really plan my meals either and found it hard to be inventive and inspiring. Basically, I got bored so I gave up.
Another factor was perceiving Paleo as a diet.
I don’t like the word diet. It has associations with food restriction, hunger, and depriving myself of different foods. It also suggests a temporary change. Now I’m focused on what I can have rather than what I can’t, and I don’t feel like I am missing out. This time around it’s a lifestyle change and there’s not much to grumble about. I’ve learnt from these experiences, and I’m finding it a lot easier.
I decided to follow a Paleo lifestyle after feeling continually sluggish and bloated. This was partly triggered too after stepping on some scales the night before a holiday. I was considerably heavier than I thought and decided I needed to eat better to feel better. I was interested enough in Paleo to give it another bash.
This time I checked out websites for inspiration and did lots more research. Reading about Paleo made me question why I would want to put processed food into my body particularly when it doesn’t make me feel great. As Pete Evans says in his vids, “you owe it to your body” to give it the best you can.
So Far, So Good…
It’s been an interesting exercise so far. I’m not being completely regimented, nor am I following the suggested 7 or 10 week plan to reset my body. I’m eating plenty of meat, veg, fruit, seeds, and nuts. I may be breaking the rules sometimes: I have the odd cup of coffee and probably eat more fresh fruit than suggested. No more bread, grains, cereals, milk, cheese, or pasta though. Bye bye wine too*. Some of these were easier to say goodbye to than others, but I’ve realised that I missed the convenience of these foods rather than their taste or what they gave me. Hello to coconut flour, endless eggs, becoming a bit obsessed with nut butters, and discovering the delights of herbal teas (Archie Browns in Truro are doing quite well out of me).
I’m not going to lie, the first 3 or 4 days took persistence. Initially I was hungry and thankfully a friend put me right and said I need to eat more fat. I made sure I had things to nibble on in the fridge – carrots, peppers, avocados, and chicken thighs. Naturally I’m tempted sometimes, it’s old habits. At these times, I question whether I really want that piece of bread, packet of crisps, or whatever has caught my eye. Within in seconds of pausing for thought, I find I no longer have the taste for it.
I have yet to see how it affects my running. I’m recovering from an injury and haven’t ventured on a long run yet. I wonder if my body will find it hard relying on fat stores initially, like before. I hear the switch from carbs to fat isn’t easy but as I’ve started this while recovering from injury, it may be different.
I’m hoping so.
The key to committing to a Paleo lifestyle, for me, is motivation and dedication.
I’m a believer that if you really want something, and are motivated and put in the effort, you will see a return. There’s something about believing in what you’re doing too that promotes change and sustainability. I’m determined (aka stubborn) when I want to be.
Other factors matter of course, like meal planning and being creative with food. I find work lunches the hardest and end up eating the same thing everyday but I’m getting there. There are some great websites out there and I have a growing collection of paleo books. I’m spending more money on food but certainly wasting less. I actually made it through a whole bag of spinach before it shriveled up and died – that never happens.
I don’t know how much weight I have lost; I don’t own scales. I’m trying not to pay too much attention to my size or actual weight loss. Instead I am focusing more on how I feel because that’s more important. When I reflect on this, I’m kind of amazed how making some changes to what I eat has made me feel this good.
Long may it continue.
A Life and Style Website – here.
*Most of the time