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Primal Challenge Journal (Bret Mattingly)

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  • Primal Challenge Journal (Bret Mattingly)

    Alright, I've been looking forward to this. A brief bit about myself:

    I'm 17 years old. Been Primal for about 2 months. Before that, I'd spent about a year on the Zone diet. I carb-binged about once a month, because I was still afraid of fat. Go figure. I'm about 165lbs, unsure of BF%.


    -No more than 3 instances of CAFO meat a week (That makes 3 meals/1 Day.)

    -No CAFO eggs or dairy.

    -Log daily food intake once per week.

    -Intermittent fast at least 12hrs, once per week (No doing this one and the last on the same day! )

    -Consistent bedtime

    -ZERO inactive days, barring unforeseen illnesses (which shouldn't happen, right? )

    -Increase DL, bench, and squat by at least 20lbs each.

    Explanations: I'm trying to prepare myself for a sustainable Primal lifestyle in college and beyond. So while my family does buy a great deal of real food, I'm paying for my own meat/eggs/dairy. I'm trying to shed the last few pounds of body fat (my six-pack is almost here! ) while also building muscle. I'm no longer allowing myself inactive days. HIIT sprints take 15 minutes. Why should I allow myself the excuse?

    One final note: Naturally, I'll be keeping this updated, but if anyone happens to respond to this, I'll return the favor and read up on your journals as well. We're all in this together (cue the music), so it's important we support each other.

  • #2

    Damn it. Today is not a good day. It appears everytime I finally am content with things, all the mystical forces in the universe conspire to rally and kick me in the ass, and not in the motivational way.

    10pm last night: Couldn't sleep.

    10:30pm: Got on computer, looked at college information.

    10:32pm: Unleashed emotional cacophony of "Am I doing the right thing?/Can I do this?/etc, etc."

    1am: Finally suppress fear enough to get to sleep.

    6am: Wake up for work, hear an argument downstairs. Joy.

    1pm: Get off work. Eat steak. Hungry, really hungry. Drink loads of (good) milk.

    2pm: Nap.

    4pm: Awake from nap. Knee is in pain. Prevents me from doing sprints today, like I'd planned.

    Sounds like I'm making a bunch of excuses. I really don't like today...


    • #3

      Wrapping up today:

      One steak, sauteed/pan roasted in EVOO.

      One large salad, some radishes, with salt and sesame oil.

      An unnecessarily high amount of low-temp pasteurized (hereafter LTP) milk.

      A bowl of chicken tortilla soup (fear not, I didn't eat the tortilla.)

      Bad day. Lots of personal issues. Tired. Will go into more detail later.


      • #4

        HA, Bret! A long time ago, when I worked in the sales department of a large hotel in the Chicago area, I had to fill out a "call sheet" for all the companies I visited (trying to get their visitors and trainees to stay with us). I used to write all kinds of goofy stuff on the sheets because I KNEW no one would ever read them! Anyway, I wanted to respond to your post, just so you know.... you're not alone! (I'm watching Dances with Wolves at the moment, and the music seems appropriate!)



        • #5

          Haha, thanks so much Jenni!

          Good morning everyone! Today is going to be a much better day. Gonna sprint here in a second once my coffee makes its way through me!


          • #6

            Hi Bret! I appreciate your comments on my thread!

            Hey, is that a typo or are you 17 years old? Hate to say it, but I'm going to have to get all motherly on you about that tequila comment if you're only 17!

            Exercise has been a part of my life for years. I finished my 4th round of P90X at the beginning of this summer, and I've been "mixing it up" since then. My "play" goal for this challenge is because my current workouts are so structured. I'd really just like to get some exercise by goofing around, playing frisbee or whatever.

            Hope you're having a good day!


            • #7

              Hi Brett- Good for you for educating yourself and putting forth the effort to eat right. Most teenagers eat like crap! And they all have personal issues.

              Finishing high school and going off to college is stressful! Remember Mark's 80/20 rule. You sound like a perfectionist so it may be hard to relax about it a little. Please don't be too hard on yourself. You'l enjoy your successes more if you don't worry about the slip ups.

              I missed the tequila remark so I won't go motherly on you

              Peace and good luck!


              • #8

                First, responses:

                Jenni: No typo, but fear not. Among my many issues, your typical suburban teenage drinking is NOT one of them. Tequila is just a running joke I have since Mark announced tequila has no carbs. :P

                How's P90X, by the way? I'm still working starting strength type things, but I'll likely move to CrossFit once I can do a freakin' deadhang pull up.

                PattySt: Thanks for the viewpoint. I am indeed a perfectionist, and I won't lie, college is scaring the **** out of me. I'll blog on that later to fill you guys in, it's a bit complex and very close to my heart.

                Today: Bacon, eggs, onion, peppers, dark chocolate, salmon (wild-caught), kale, and peanut butter (damn it!)

                Workout was sprints. My heart really wasn't in it today. Only 4 on-off cycles.


                • #9

                  P90X rocks! I still can't do a deadhang pull up either. I keep one foot on a chair, but I can do a whole lot more of them that way that I could a year ago!

                  Do you mind my asking where you'll be going to school?


                  • #10

                    I'm still looking around. I've got my heart set on Berklee School of Music, though. There's a great deal of fear and trepidation around that, however. (Which, again, I promise I'll go into later).


                    • #11

                      Bret, you must be a serious musician! My husband has a master's degree in Music. He went to Jacksonville State University in Alabama. He's a low brass guy, tuba mostly, with some trombone for jazz. He considered going professional with concert tuba when he got out of college, but that's a tough road so he ended up teaching. He taught for 11 years, then he was an elementary school principal for 11 years. Now he's in IT! He kind of wishes he'd never gone in to administration, becuase he really missed the music. I don't know if this means anything to you, but I'm a former guard captain of Phantom Regiment. I realize now at the age of 49, what an amazing thing muscle memory is!


                      • #12


                        Played alto sax for 2 years in high school band, taught myself to play piano in that time. Joined choir, will be in my 3rd year of that. Finally getting consistent piano lessons as of 2 months ago. I also compose electronic music, and have been dabbling in orchestral as well. Suffice it to say it consumes my thoughts.

                        My fear regarding college was the result of my lack of 'experience': Having not been trained on any one instrument very long, I was deathly afraid of not making it into a music program by failing the audition. Fortunately, last night I discovered that Berklee is not even accepting applications for Summer 2010 yet, which means my audition won't be till sometime next year! Thanks for sharing your story too, it's so incredible to hear from someone with experience in the area. I'm one of the first musicians in my family, that alone is an interesting situation.


                        Daily Updates:

                        Friday: Weightlifting ended early, felt like I was dead out of energy, and hit a plateau. Food was for the most part good, may've eaten at a caloric surplus though.

                        Saturday: The only exercise I had was walking around the state fair for 3 hours. Unfortunately, that made me a bit tired, and I suspect I'm not as in-shape as I ought to be! Food was good for the day though, as I avoided all of the evil ISF foods (Think deep-fried EVERYTHING.) Also got to milk a cow, which was a crazy feeling, but kind of awesome in a way. Didn't get the milk though.

                        Today: Perfect day in regards to exercise:

                        Weightlifting (good session), followed by ten minutes of walking and then 6 hours of working at Starbucks. I intentionally made work a bit intense to burn some fatty acids. Food was alright, failed my non-CAFO dairy by having some heavy cream in my coffee. Though it was proportionally small, I still would've liked to have had organic/grass-fed. Also had some lunch sandwiches (sans le pain, bien sur), which have a small amount of soybean oil in them. Veggies and grilled chicken for dinner tonight. WOO!


                        • #13

                          Today, I feel like a primal failure:

                          Woke up to do today's Crossfit WOD. 5:30am. Too tired, I told myself, and slept till 6 to get ready for school.

                          I DID have my first-ever 30 minute nap. I read one of Mark&#39;s posts on napping and realized that I was entering deep sleep by allowing myself to nap one to two hours. Today, energy levels were in perfect form.

                          Also had some superawesome Primal pancakes, and some carrots/jicama/radishes.

                          Unfortunately, once I got to work (Starbucks, pretty much the most anti-primal place on the planet), things went significantly downhill. A list of everything I consumed:

                          -Whipped cream. Sweetened whipped cream.

                          -Tuna salad. The packaged kind. Soybean oil and preservatives.

                          -Soymilk. Do I even have to explain?

                          And my real problem is not hunger. It&#39;s that I KEEP eating, even after my stomach is full. It&#39;s the taste buds. And worse, today I heard myself saying "Well at least it&#39;s not bread/pepsi/etc." And that spells out problem to me. I don&#39;t know. Today I&#39;m really frustrated.


                          • #14

                            Go Bret! Just checking in with you, hope the Primal Power is welling up within!


                            • #15

                              Hey Bret!

                              Just checking in with you..... where have you been the past few days? Starbucks? OH NOOOOOOOOOO!

                              Stop by my thread and say HI when you get a chance.