So apparently it’s 2 months since I last posted, and that means that my first 100 days at Crossfit are over.
And I’m still there.
I’ve actually had a reasonably recent uptick in motivation for a couple of reasons, and I’m doing really well at being committed, turning up when I said I would, working hard, keeping going and eating clean.
I posted before about being sad that I’d put a fair amount of my previously lost weight back on, and that trend continued. I dallied with Weight Watchers very briefly, but didn’t really trust the low-fact nature. On a recent holiday I read a book about The Zone Diet, and also Robb Wolf’s new book “Wired To Eat”, which is based around Paleo. Both are closely linked to ‘clean eating’ which is the method I largely used back in 2014/2015, and it reminded me of how great I felt when I was strictly clean eating. I clearly remember almost buzzing with energy at one point I felt so good. And stuff’s happened since then but it worked and so there really is no logical reason that it wouldn’t work again.
“Wired To Eat” explains why we are hard programmed to over eat today’s hyperpalatable foods, and prescribes a 30 day Paleo reset to kick the habit of sugar, refined carbs and other foods that can be problematic (Bread, I’m looking at you.) After this, you test your reaction to different carbs by trying one sort at breakfast one day then testing your blood sugar levels 2 hours later. Carbs that elevate your blood sugar beyond a certain point are to be avoided, but there may be others that you react well to. The 30 day reset thing is also thought to help significantly with insulin resistance which my Consultant suggested that I might be suffering from. And I’d done it before, so why couldn’t I do it again?
So I got back from hols on Monday night, having ordered a load of healthy stuff, and started in earnest on Tuesday. I’ve lost 1kg this week which is a great result and reminds that THIS WORKS!
A pal from the gym has been posting photos of her food on Instagram as a way of staying accountable, and I thought why wouldn’t I use this blog in a similar way? It’s actually the first time since my operation (and for a while before) that I have felt so committed and capable. At the height of my successes ‘before’ I used to say it wasn’t hard, I wasn’t using willpower but I just didn’t want the bad stuff. And this week has been a little bit similar to that – except for I can be a little balanced so I’m totally ON IT without being obsessive this time around. Win win! So despite my high levels of motivation, I thought documenting the process of this next 45 days or so might be useful for a number of reasons: maybe someone out there is looking for information about Paleo/Primal/Clean Eating/CrossFit/losing big amounts of weight and this might help. It also helps me to look back at what I’ve been up to when it comes to explaining results (either good or bad). And I kind of thought why would anyone be in anyway interested in any of that, but then I decided to publish it anyway. I’m planning to post weekly.
Macros for the Zone Diet (which makes a load of sense) are 40% Protein, 30% Carbs, 30% Fat and I’m kind of combining those macros with the food choices of Primal – because I’m keeping dairy in for now, and I’m not adverse to the odd new potato, etc. If I find that I’m not losing weight/feeling good I will look again at it but I’m sure I’m OK with dairy so for now it stays.
I haven’t done bad this week, and I enjoy the fact that fat is not demonised.
I’m really impressed again at the quantity of food that I can eat. Food cooked from scratch, protein in every meal and carbs from veg/salad/fruit. Really it’s just nice food. A couple of days I’ve had a spinach protein smoothie for breakfast and it’s lasted well all morning. Salads for lunch, either with tuna or salad, and meat/veg/salad for dinners. It might be easier because of the nice spring weather lends itself nicely to salads, but even if that is the case I’ve got loads of time until it’s warm stew and carb season!
I did elect to have a McDonalds McFlurry this evening with my family as a Friday night treat. It followed a healthy beef stir fry, and I suggested it only after I’d checked that my macros could take it and that I had the ‘spare’ calories. Not the healthiest choice, obviously, but the strictness that I had before wasn’t entirely healthy either. I still struggle with the concept that sugary, processed ‘treats’ are thought of as such, and really they’re not. I wanted to get out with my family after a week at work and it provided a good excuse. It has led to an evening of wanting chocolate/more sugar, so maybe it should be avoided, but wanted to try being balanced about all of this.
One bad day to learn from this week. I commuted to London so didn’t take my normal prepared food. I was sure that Pret would have the right things for me. Well, £19.95 later I had brought a number of different options for breakfast because I was STARVING by the time I got there and then discovered near the end of day that my macros that day were a bit up on fat. I discovered this in Crossfit that evening, having had only 20% carbs and 500ml water all day I found the workout ridiculously tough. I mean, Crossfit sessions are typically tough anyway but my deadlift weights were down and I just knew I was down on energy. I also took a med ball to the nose, and then to the chin – my wall ball game was clearly not on point! I had a cracking headache and every time I bent down it throbbed. It might have been silly to train that day, but I had committed to going and I still burned calories. And apparently the med ball on the nose thing is quite common, so I’m not alone.
Next week brings more of the same. I’m planning at least 3 Crossfit WODs and an Open Gym session in which I’ll be doing my second training session for the 5/3/1 powerlifting program by Wendler. A coach at Crossfit recommended it and I really like that in each workout you do (1 a week per lift – I’m focussing on Deadlift and Strict Press) you aim to a set a Reps record. I like that it’s not all about the 1RM (as such) but encourages you to add reps as a measure of your strength. Each cycle (4 weeks) you add weight and progress that way. It sounds really cool. There’s also wisdom that says focus on the inputs rather than the outcomes. In my case this means focus on turning up to the gym, getting stronger, eating well, drinking enough water. If I do all of that, the weight loss will follow. In my job as a Continuous Improvement professional I do nothing but advise people of this sort of thing, so should be easy to apply to myself.