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Primal Challenge Journal (BestLife)

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  • Primal Challenge Journal (BestLife)


    I've been living a 'low carb' lifestyle for many years, but falling on and off the wagon. Two years ago, I got myself in gear with eating whole-foods (animal protein, veggie, dairy, nuts, some fruit) and HIIT weight/cardio mix exercises (5 hrs/week). Lost 10 sizes (16 to 6) and 35 lbs (I'm a 38 y-o woman, 5'2"). Gained lots of muscle too. Then plateau'ed and gained back aboug 5-10 lbs (fluctuating). Been stuck until about 3 weeks ago when I discovered MDA and re-committed.

    I've been so encouraged by my recent ability to forego all grains/starches/sugars. Previously, I'd allow myself "just a bite" and "just a nibble" and would become prone to night-time carb binges. I'm really committed to avoiding all that stuff now. I'm excited about this challenge!!

    My goal: Lose 8 lbs. (current 148)


    1. NEAN (Not Even A Nibble) on sugar, starch, grains of any kind. 100%.

    2. Exercise 5x week. Increase 'primal' style WOs.

    3. Limit coffee (with half-n-half) to 2 cups per day. Tea or black coffee the rest of the time (and water, of course)

    4. Journal daily.

    Grok on!!

  • #2

    out of town guests at our house making my first couple days not so perfect. I'm doing such a great job of resisting all the carbage I'm serving them - bread, cake, cookies, rice, couscous... But I'm sitting around a table longer, bigger meals, mindlessly munching on fruit and nuts (which are 'legal' for me, but I'm eating more than I should).


    B: omelet, sliced cheese, smoked salmon, sliced tom/cuke/red pepper, cottage cheese, olives, coffee w/half-n-half.

    S: mixed nuts

    D: chicken baked in plums/red wine/soy sauce/garlic/onion. asparagus, 1/2 grilled plum tomato. fruit salad, nuts, tea.

    WO: mixture of weights (chest), squats, box jumps, burpees, pushups, rowing, abs, jump-rope.

    Kept coffee to 2 cups!


    • #3

      This morning there was a spread of bagels (which I adore) and I completely did not eat even a nibble! So happy and proud of this accomplishment.

      I thought I would IF today, but I guess I won't. It's just too hard while playing hostess...

      So far today -

      B: scrambled eggs, cottage cheese, smoked salmon, sliced veg (tom/cuke/red pepper), sardines in olive oil, cheese, olives, coffee w/hnh.


      • #4

        8/4 continued:

        L: sardines w/cream chs, slices tom/red pepper. 1 strawberry.

        S: coffee w/hnh X2 (oops - that made 3 today, over my 2 only goal...)

        D1: PWO meal of leftover ribeye slices, pecans, eggplant/red pepper/garlic salad (yum!). Jasmine tea.

        We haven't had our 'official' family dinner yet, so I might eat a little bit again later, but probably not -feeling quite satisfied right now.

        WO: rode my bike 11 miles to a cafe and back - did some work at an outdoor cafe table in the sunshine. Beautiful.

        Continue to be amazed and grateful for my recent bout of self-control success with the carbs, no nibbles!! Woohoo!


        • #5


          Did have a small late snack after dinner - abt 1 scrambled egg and 1 slice cheese, and black coffee.


          I'm doing an Intermittent Fast today. Drank 2 cups of coffee w/hnh, though. Will switch to water/herbal tea for the remainder of the day. Plan on hanging on from last night's night cap until tomorrow's breakfast, if I can make it.

          WO: crazy workout w/my trainer included outside sprints up hill/down steps, across patch of grass and intermixed with burpees. Box jumps w/squats, chest press, pull ups, pushups, sit ups, mountain climbers, mule kicks, and more. Wow!

          I'm REALLY hungry.

          I was really disappointed that my weight was 2 lbs HIGHER this morning compared to 8/3. After all that carb-avoiding I did, it seems like a cruel joke. Oh well. I'm keeping on, keeping on.


          • #6

            I love the NEAN idea!! I always seem to do so well and then I let it all come crashing down with one cookie that just screws by blood sugar for at least a day and makes the cravings off the wall.


            • #7

              Oh, thanks for your comment, Icme. I was kinda thinking that with so many people on this forum for the challenge, the likelihood of anyone but myself looking at my navel-gazing thoughts here was so unlikely... so, you've shown me it's not necessarily true! Thanks.

              8/5 evening: decided to go ahead and break my IF - so sleep-deprived so I felt weaker and hungrier than usual. Figured no point in suffering. I did last for about 16.5 hrs, and I'm good with that.

              So - fast-breaking meal at 4pm: bowl of leftover soup: mostly veggies and tidbits of chicken/beef, followed by 2 eggs fried in butter. 6 pecan halves, tea.

              Dinner: cheeseburger (no bun, of course) that my hubby grilled to perfection. About 1/4 cup of eggplant salad (not fully primal - had some mayo in it in addition to grilled eggplant, garlic, lemon, salt and pepper), and 1 T of leftover fruit salad (apple, watermelon, cantaloupe melon, blueberries, strawberries). A tiny amount, but I'm so carb-sensitive even that can throw me into a tail-spin.

              Black coffee.

              Danced salsa for about 1 hr.


              • #8


                Only got about 3.5 hrs of sleep. That sucked. Was desperately tired all day today. But had to start work early.

                B: 2 hard-boiled eggs mixed with 1/2 avocado, salt. Coffee w/hnh.

                L: 2 hard-boiled eggs mixed with 1/2 cup cottage cheese and ~8 olives.

                S: Americano w/hnh

                D: hamburger patty and 1/2 ribeye steak (YUMMY!!), 1/2 cup (or a bit more?) of tomato/cuke salad w/evoo, salt and pepper, and ~1/3 c eggplant salad. ~10-12 pecan halves. 2 small cubes of 71% cacao chocolate :].

                No WO today. Def. will tomorrow, though.

                I might fast until lunch (skip bkfst) but we'll see how I feel.

                So tired... good night fellow primal challenge people.


                • #9

                  8/7 went by like a blur...

                  Skipped bkfst. WO was a 'hip-hop dance class' that was being offered by one of the stores at a nearby shopping plaza. My friend dragged me there. We did the hour of dancing in the sun, in full view of the busy parking lot. What a spectacle. But I worked up a sweat, enjoyed myself, and got good sun/vit. D.

                  Lunch was kind of late: leftovers - grilled burger patty, grilled chicken thigh skewers, some eggplant salad. I don't really remember now what else (if).

                  I should have logged my food yesterday but I was so busy. Now I'm so tired (it's Sat. night) and I can't recall!

                  I was on plan but then I needed to bake a cake for my son's 12th birthday the next day. I strayed from my commitment to no sugar/grains b/c I licked the batter. At first, it was inadvertent - muscle memory, I guess. But then a few more tastes which I could have obviously avoided. I didn't really feel hungry so I didn't eat dinner.

                  I had a salsa performance that evening so I ran off, and then I did some social salsa dancing after the show. It was a fun workout, my second dance workout for the day.

                  Got home around 1 am and had to continue the cooking marathon. Made a mushroom quiche (dairy-primal) and quiche lorraine (with natural, hormone/nitrite free bacon). Both had heavy cream, sauteed onions, cottage cheese or sour cream, and no crust or breading of any kind.

                  I was really hungry after the dancing so I warmed up some leftover veggie/beef/chicken soup (mostly veggies was all that was left) and a hard boiled egg w/some cottage. I also snacked on a bunch of bacon as I cooked it for the quiche.


                  • #10

                    8/8 I got about 3.5 hrs of sleep again only to wake up to go to a morning meeting and return quickly to finish the preparations for our noon brunch birthday celebration with the whole family for my son.

                    Didn't have any breakfast - just 2 coffees with hnh.

                    Lunch - despite tons of bread (the whole grain/seeded kind that I adore) and bagels and great shmears, I stuck to the right foods during this meal:

                    salmon/avocado/egg salad, egg/mayo/mustard salad, sliced cuke/tom/pepper, brie, blueberries and champagne grapes, smoked wild atlantic salmon, and a square of each of the two homemade crustless quiches (mushroom and lorraine). Dessert was my home-made chocolate/coffee three tiered cake with coffee-flavored whipped cream icing, and watermelon/cantaloupe slices. I dropped my commitment again and sampled the cake (parts from son's piece he didn't want anymore, not my own plate), as well as the fruit. Then ate a bit more of the cake. I did not eat a whole slice of cake. But I ate a whole lot more than NEAN (Not Even A Nibble).

                    Here's the kicker: this is my historical pattern.

                    I felt discouraged with myself. And I'm super sleep deprived (under 4 hrs per night 2 nights in a row). And I felt kind of moody and sad. Then had an argument with my son in the afternoon, so was sulky.

                    And, emotional eating kicked right in.

                    Said bread, cake, and bagels were staring me in the face - leftovers from the lunch were everywhere. And I 'permitted' myself to self-medicate with carbs. Bread with butter. Bagel with cream cheese and lox. More bread with butter. Some more of the cake. And "a whole nectarine" (which is usually an indulgence for me as well).

                    I'm feeling pretty crappy and stupid now. I had one of the longest runs of steadfast commitment to NEAN that I can remember in the last 3 weeks. I just broke it.

                    I'm right back up and going back on the wagon, not to worry. But now I hope I don't experience a regression or weight gain from this.

                    Tomorrow - I plan to do more salsa dancing and probably go for a morning run. I think I'll try to IF for at least some of the day to get my caloric intake in check.

                    I'll report again tomorrow.


                    • #11


                      Right before bedtime, my carb-infused carb-demons raged again, so I ate some more watermelon in the dark kitchen. Great

                      This morning, I actually slept in for the first time in ages. My body was so tired from the sleep deprivation and the stress and of course the carb binge was of no help in the energy department.

                      Had coffee w/hnh and some leftover egg salad with slices of bell peppers and cukes.

                      Took the boys to a movie and then lunch. My birthday boy got to choose the restaurant, and he wanted Thai. We went to one that was right by the cinema. Bad choice. The food was ALL with sweet sauces. Some sticky and gooey sweet, and others just sweet. Sweet and salty, sweet and spicey, but everything sweet.

                      I had 2 choices, really: try to IF and not eat, or just give myself permission to have another cheat meal and go with the flow. Given my weak state, and the fact that I blew it yesterday, I went with the latter. So I ate (overate, really) from everything - including the rice (which I always avoid with ease) and all the sticky stuff.

                      I felt stuffed and disgusted when I was through.

                      I came home at 4:00 pm and simply crashed. I slept for 3 hours.

                      So. I'm IF'ing now - from the end of the lunch at 3:30 until tomorrow at lunch. I have a lunch meeting at a restaurant and will try to eat as purely as possible. I will choose to NOT eat if no good choices seem available.

                      The past 24 hours were shameful. I will not repeat this.


                      • #12


                        So this morning the scale showed me up 3 lbs since Friday!! That, SUCKS!!!

                        My body is so extremely carb-sensitive that any kind of cheating is rewarded with major detriment, while adherence to the plan is lately rewarded with mere maintenance. Been stuck at the same level (yo-yo'ing up and down the same 3 lbs or so) for a year. Frickin' tired of it, too.

                        Anyhoo, I fasted 20.5 hrs from yesterday lunch to today lunch.

                        Broke the fast with leftover salmon salad, egg salad, and bell pepper/cuke slices. Some brie cheese, blueberries, champagne grapes and melon for dessert (sml amts of each). Black coffee (plus my two hnh coffees of the morning).

                        I should exercise today. Feeling quite sluggish.


                        • #13

                          Did not exercise, after all. Blah.

                          Snacked on melon and bacon, and big spoonful of sour cream.

                          Dinner was AFTER going to the movies - so pretty late: leftover chicken (baked in plums/red wine/soy sauce/garlic/onion), leftover crustless mushroom quiche, watermelon, frozen champagne grapes.


                          • #14

                            Wow - skipped reporting a day. LEt's see...


                            B: 2 eggs fried; 2xcoffee w/hnh

                            L: cheese frm 2 slices pizza (not so primal), leftover chicken drumstick, few hazelnuts;

                            D: leftover crustless quiche lorraine and mush quiche*. Mmmm. Some mango. Decaf Americano w/hnh.

                            I can't remember but I might have had a few hazelnuts in the afternoon, too...

                            *I am definitely a lacto-ovo carnivore. I can't see giving up dairy. I wonder if I ever reach the conclusion that I must...?

                            I sat in my home office with my gym clothes on all day. I never made it to the gym. Mark says it's okay to take a 'recovery day'. That makes 4 in a row.

                            Just feeling so lazy and tired the last few days. And kinda down, mood-wise. Hmph.


                            • #15



                              My weight is back down 2 of the 3 lbs I gained this weekend. I'm at 149.5.

                              Intermittent fast from after last night's dinner (~8p) until today's late lunch (~1:40p) which was actually brunch-y. I did have 2 cups coffee w/hnh.

                              Fasted workout at the gym with my workout buddy (trainer is on vacation): Weights and cardio interspersed, quads/chest/back/triceps/abs and jumping jacks, box jumps, mountain climbers, mule kicks, knees-to-chest jumps, sprints down the hall, burpees, and so on. Great 1 hr workout. Felt so awesome after!

                              L: 2 egg omelet w/few dices of red/orange bell pepper and cheese. Served with 2-3 tbsp cottage cheese, several slices smoked wild salmon, 2 tbsp cream cheese. Ate ~1 tbsp of butter, too. Dessert: 1/2 nectarine, 2-3 strawberries, 5-6 blueberries. I feel so full...