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PALEO & The Challenge

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I have feared it since I first heard about it. When I first started Crossfitting, there was a lot of talk about Paleo and Primal ways of living. (I love how they dont call it a diet. Truely. Its a Paleo 'way of living')

I wanted to know more, and the more I knew, the less I wanted to try it.
Primal seemed the way to start. Its a more laid back form of Paleo, and allows dairy and some other things that Paleo doesnt. I heart cheese, ya know. I tried it, then I ditched it. Tried it, ditched it. Etc etc.

On Monday, our Crossfit Box started a challenge. Its 3 months long. Crossfit 3-5x a week, eat Paleo, dont drink alcohol, stay away from grains and dairy, drink 64oz or more of water each day. Its pretty simple actually. The challenge, I think, is a way to get more of us started on Paleo with some incentives to push us harder.

We get points for certain things. -1 point for each alcoholic beverage. -1 point for getting less than 8 hours of sleep. +1 point for taking 3 grams of fish oils a day. +20 points a week for Crossfitting (or working out) at least 5 times a week.

So I quit 'my' way of eating cold turkey and I'm now on day 3 of eating Paleo. The only thing I've cheated with so far is my daily 1/3 cup of Greek yogurt with berries. (yogurt is dairy).
You can eat as much as you want of the right things. You 'shouldn't' be hungry. You must eat 5x a day.

So far, I actually feel pretty damn good! Spinach and grilled chicken, BACON!, lots of eggs, almonds and veggies. Still learning how to prepare and cook these things. And still struggling on occasion about deciding WHAT to eat.

We grilled out last night. Normally I'm a bratwurst person. Thats all I eat on the grill. But no more brats. I'm paleo now. So I had grilled pork ribs for the first time in my life. And you know what? They were delicious, and paleo! My biggest struggle so far is getting in enough calories, oddly enough.

Maybe this wont be as hard as I thought. No, it will be tough. This I know. But I've got the support of my box and the other challenge participants to help me along.

We're on day 3 of 90! Bring it!

Does anybody else eat paleo? I've heard the first 10-14 days suck. You dont feel well and will be weaker than normal. But I feel okay yet, just really craving some sugar! Lol!


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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    So I know I'm super late on this blog (better late than never, right?) I just started the Paleo way of living -- I told myself I would ease into it -- but who am I kidding? I'm an all or nothing kind of person -- so the second I decided to "ease" into it -- I pretty much went all in. (the only thing I do allow myself to have is 3 splenda in a black coffee in the morning) I am on day 3 as of today -- my Crossfit gym is doing a challenge coming up in the next few months -- person who loses the most bodyfat percentage gets a free month at our gym!! In the past 3 days, I have also struggled to get all my calories in but I gotta say the way I feel and what I see on the scale is amazing. I weighed in on Monday, 10/17 at 238.7 which was really discouraging because it meant I had gained almost 8 lbs back over the last 2 weeks of eating poorly and not exercising. I started doing Paleo, running, doing some at home WOD's before work and it's Thursday, 10/20 and I'm already back down to 131.8. That is almost 7 lbs in 3 days (tues-thurs). I wanted to see how everything turned out for you -- since you wrote this back in July -- how did you do over the next 90 days? You are an inspiration and a rockstar!!
    3532 days ago
    I fought Paleo at first -kicking and screaming all the way. But both my crossfit trainer and my chiropractor kept yakking at me about eating this way. So I figured one of us three stubborn people was going to have to give in on it - turned out to be me.
    Once I started, I wondered why I had been so resistant. It was a lot easier to shop (just produce and meat departments with dairy for the eggs), and a lot easier to get a meal ready than I imagined.
    I kept waiting for the "carb flu" to hit, but it never did. Quite the contrary - I felt more energy and more alert - like a fog had cleared.
    The challenge sounds like a great idea, and I am sure the support and information from others helps. Good luck and enjoy!
    3624 days ago
  • KASSAY25
    I love the challenge that you guys are doing, what a great idea!
    I actually felt the same way when i first started CF and learned about the nutrition side of things. When i was told i would have to give up grains i was not too surprised, but when they mentioned eliminating dairy i freaked. I am French, grew up in France therefore i LOVE cheese. But surprisingly after a few weeks of strict Paleo i didn't find myself craving it. Here i am 4 months later and still loving Paleo, best decision i've ever made. I feel a difference in so many aspects of my life since i have changed my diet, i sleep better, have more energy, my workouts have improved, my mood, etc.. Dairy contains alot of hormones which affect your body in the long run especially but i did notice some instant results such as a lack of bloating (dairy contains casein which causes inflammation), and i also noticed that my skin has cleared (i was suffering from adult acne).

    I can guarantee you that your cravings will go away. But i am a strong believer in an occasional cheat. Usually i will allow myself one serving of grain or dairy a week. But sometimes i find myself not even wanting it because of the effect it has on my body.

    If you need any advice, recipes, etc feel free to ask :)
    Good luck! You are doing awesome!
    3624 days ago
    What's wrong with a brat?
    3631 days ago
  • no profile photo FREDARL
    I am not a Crossfitter, and I have been trying to eat cleaner in the past several months. But when I drastically cut back on eating grain and cut out sugar entirely my strength and endurance goes down. I am gradually trying to have less of those things in my diet, but don't think I would want to stop cold turkey.
    3631 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/13/2011 3:50:27 PM
  • TPELL21
    Sounds like a great challenge!

    My wife and I eat Paleo about 95% (well I'm more Primal, but that's because I'm trying to incorporate dairy in order to gain a bit of weight...)
    My first go at Paleo was a similar challenge at our box (30 days though). I found the first one the toughest as you learn a whole new list of ingredients and recipes. But as you do it, you learn a lot of new stuff and it gets easier and easier. By the time the second challenge cam around we were pretty comfortable with it and it felt like second nature almost. With the exception of the occasional cheat, we have been on Paleo for about 10 months now, and we feel great. Actually when we do have our cheats now we usually feel like crap afterwards. Amazing how the body adjusts?!?!

    As far as the first week or two sucking, I think it's pretty individual. I didn't suffer from the 'carb flu' as some others do. (This is the time that your body is learning to switch from carbs to protein and fat as the main fuel source.) If you do feel yourself feeling this way you can try to increase your carb intake a bit.

    Good luck with the challenge and the new way of living. It really is worth it! I know a lot of other Sparkers have tried Paleo, been hesitant at first, but have found great success. If you have any questions we'll be more than happy to help.


    3631 days ago
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