Thursday, 22 March 2012

Weigh in # 02

10 days of eating and training like a caveman, lets take a look at how I’ve coped.

My first weigh in was Monday 12th March and I started with all the best intentions; I did my first fitness test, weighed and measured myself cooked healthy paleo meals and felt truly positive. But there was something wrong, I had a craving, a craving that wouldn’t go away. A craving that only one thing would satiate; left over two day old birthday cake. I was off work on Monday and had the intention to take my cake in to work for everyone else to enjoy, but there it was on my kitchen worktop, staring at me. I did the usual things to take my mind off it, went for a walk, had a drink of water and kept myself busy. But there it was, still staring at me with its vanilla sponge, juicy red strawberry filling and frosting – oh the frosting! I caved in and cut myself a slab, demolished it in three huge bites and then the guilt hit me. What have I done? Why the heck do I sabotage myself like this?

‘That’s it, I’m giving up!’

… would have be my usual response, but not now. I gave myself a talking to and rationalised that eating this cake was because of two potential reasons:

  1. It was there… staring at me!
  2. A biological craving for sugar
Temptation is a hard thing to overcome, even with a good attitude and motivation and by simply having the cake still in my home was enough for me to fall off the wagon (in less than 24 hours, impressive!). In response to this I’ve given away any non-paleo foods that remained in the house to my parents. Pasta, rice, crackers, flour, cereal, fruit juices – its all gone. This has removed the immediate temptation if they were still in the house and for me it’s an easy thing to do as my fiancée Helen is also joining me with the paleo lifestyle.
            Its all well and good me saying “but it was there… staring at me” I will have to deal with temptations in the future. Going out with friends, holidays, Christmas, Easter, parties, the dreaded Cake Friday at work (I will rant about this another time!) are all events where I’m going to be tempted. I will literally be expected to eat the foods I’m trying to avoid by my friends and family, I will have to explore how to do this and still enjoy myself as and when they come up.
            The second reason, carbohydrate cravings, is my preferred ‘Modus operandi’. I literally went to eating ALL THE CARBS at the weekend in the form of pizza, bread, crisps and beer (a heck of a lot of beer) to very little carbs, mainly from veggies. Robb Wolf has an interesting article on carb cravings on his website written by Amy Kubal: ( . I think I definitely fall in to biologically triggered carb craving, as from Tuesday I have stuck with it and my cravings have decreased over time. Even when a colleague brought in a packet of biscuits from a business trip and left them for all to enjoy I didn’t crave one.

In terms of exercise, I’ve loved every session, even when I’ve not been particularly motivated before the session. Its been hard adjusting to ‘jogging’ at 55-75% of my MHR as this feels so sloooow, particularly embarrassing when an elderly lady overtakes me in her mobility scooter and shouts, “come on son, you can do it”. But, que es lo que es, I’ve just had to man up and just jog like tortoise on valium. I will get faster working at his heart zone and you know what, when I finish my run and get home I feel amazingly energized, like I could go out and do another 7 miles.
            I’ve had a stop and start approach with my lifting heavy things routine. I started following Mark Sissons LHT protocol in Primal Blueprint Fitness, but ended up tying myself in knots following which exercises to do and how many reps. I knew I wanted to progress quickly and do things my way so I started afresh on Saturday (17th Mar) by doing the initial test for push ups, crunches, pull ups and squats in the fitness 4-in-1 app for the iPhone as described in my last post. I feel I’m progressing well on this and when I have hit the goal reps for these exercises I will return to Sissons protocol.
            Other than from a diet and exercise point of view I’m feeling remarkably positive and very happy. Most people are noticing I’m bounding around with a youthful excitement, so much so one of our younger employees asked if I could ‘hook him up with what I’ve dropped’ – I naively offered him some of my jerky.

…and now for the weigh in (drum roll please):

Body Measurements

Weight (lbs)
Left Bicep Flexed (cm) [a]
Right Bicep Flexed (cm) [b]
Left Thigh (cm) [c]
Right Thigh (cm) [d]
Waist (cm) [e]
Hips (cm) [f]
Total centimetres (TC) [a+b+c+d+e+f]
% Body Fat

First thing to comment on is that I’ve changed my body measurements from inches to centimetres, this is just so I can work it out easier. To be honest, total inches or centimetres is a fairly arbitrary number as it is, but it is a good indication in changing body composition.

I’m pretty pleased with losing 5 lbs within 10 days, although I’m wary this will slow down, as I did binge the weekend leading up to the start of the plan by having pizza and beer. I’ve nearly dropped an entire % point for body fat, which is pretty encouraging. My total centimetres have decreased, which is to be expected particularly on my waist. I was a bit confused that I had lost about 1.5cm off each bicep, considering they feel a lot firmer to me, but I’ve attributed them feeling harder and looking better to losing a bit of fat around them creating more definition.

Who wants a sexy graph to represent this? Well feast on this!

Okay, so I may have over sold the sexiness of the graph, but everything is going in the right direction – down!

It occurred to me that I don’t have a start picture on my blog yet, I did take a ‘day one’ picture, which was taken in my boxers the day after my birthday drinking bonza. My hair is stuck up all over, I’m red eyed and hungover and I’ve got far too many wobbly bits so I’m quite embarrassed by that picture. When this is all over and I come out the other side; slim, toned and like the handsome cave man I want to be I will upload this picture for motivation. I will upload a picture soon, to see the week by week progress.

My next weigh in on the 1st April, before then I aim to write a summary of what Paleo eating is, for those that do not know.

Until next time – toodle pip


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