So, I’ve hit one month of doing a Paleo lifestyle and decided to start a blog. After just one month, I completely understand veteran Paleo followers and their enthusiasm for this way of life. I don’t think I’ll ever look back. Even so, there is good news and bad news to my story so far. I’ll start with the bad news.
Bad News: Low Carb Flu
The good news about the bad news is the bad news is completely 100% temporary. So, I guess it’s just a setback on the road to recovery. Low Carb Flu is real. I experienced it the second and third weeks and didn’t realize what was happening until the comparison hit me. What was going on was pretty much the same feeling I had when I was detoxing from smoking. The only thing that I didn’t experience was the unbelievable mood swings that I did when giving up nicotine (that was the time in my life that my mood swings were the most out of control, ever). Everything else, oooh buddy. The same. Sugar is a substance that our bodies become addicted to easily. Carb Flu is just Paleo jargon for “detox”. I’m telling you right now, that I’ve already come out of that detox and the way Paleo people talk about always feeling great is 100% of the time is real. I’m not even kidding. I’ve had mood issues for years now, but I haven’t experienced swings in quite a few days. That’s BIG for me. That’s really enormous. Honestly, I am so stoked about this one change alone because I hated that about myself. I hate it more than my weight. It felt like I was always spiraling out of control and that I had no control over my emotions. To be able to say that days in a row I’ve had no crazy emotional swings is tremendous!!
Since I Mentioned Weight…
Now, I have a lot of weight to lose. I also have PCOS, which causes this vicious cycle in a woman’s body that can make it extremely hard to lose weight on a Standard American Diet (or SAD). I didn’t take beginning pictures (I know, what kind of dieter am I?!?), but here I am in a pair of my jeans the first month down.
(I literally wrote this entry yesterday while our internet was out and I put as a place holder for this pic this: “INSERT PIC… DON’T BE A SCAREDY CAT” It takes a lot of courage for me to do so!)
Yeah…. I’ve not once counted calories or gave food point values or kept a food journal. I have not once weighed myself. I haven’t even thought about measuring myself or anything. I haven’t employed any of these typical weight loss tips, yet clearly, I’ve lost weight already. (Right now, I’m wearing jeans that I haven’t been able to wear in years!!!)
In the Paleo community, most people suggest to let these things go and honestly, I am proof already that you can and have success. Most important to understand about this is that the calories in = calories out idea isn’t founded in much truth when it comes to the human body. That I can also attest to because I’m eating insane amounts of food now and yet, need a belt or new pants! Yes, you can let the calorie counting go…
You Will Gain Superpowers
Okay, this is exaggerated, but I’ve noticed that my senses, mainly my sense of smell, has drastically become greater. So much so, that I’ve had to switch to all natural cleaning supplies (almost most of my cleaning is done with baking soda and/or vinegar) and homemade, all-natural beauty regime. I’ve wanted to do this for a LONG time now. I think “Go Green” was a good rival for “Get Healthy” on my list of goals for years now, so it’s a fantastic that going Paleo has helped make other goals happen.
What About Exercise?
Exercise does not have as much as a role to weight loss that diet has (remember calories in DOES NOT equal calories out) . I actually just saw in Make Shift Happen: Change How You Look by Changing How You Think a nifty chart showing that the more a person weighs the less exercise has anything to do with weight loss. I’ve heard the saying “weight loss is 80% diet, 20% exercise”, but it’s taken even further to 90% or greater on diet the more you weigh. That’s very interesting to me because I’ll confess that I haven’t gone all out with exercising. Originally, I had lots of things on my list of what I was going to do, but the thing that I’ve stuck with is walking. We adopted a 3 year old border collie around the same time I started Paleo and I walk with her anywhere from 1.5 miles to 4 miles a day. If I’m really feeling up to it, we’ll do a few sprints on our walk, but that’s rare. I don’t do anything crazy or outrageous in the view of exercising and honestly, for right now, I’m okay with that. It’s something I look forward to and I’m always in the mood to go on our walks and I’m not sure if I allowed myself to just do the walking that I would have been happy… (and if I wasn’t happy, I would have been plagued by guilt and guilt would have derailed this whole thing). I’m not going to say that these walks are the key for the rest of my life and I’m sure I’ll expand my horizons later on, little by little, but diet is first and foremost. Just like the “Go Green” goal was a side effect of going Paleo, broadening my exercise horizons, I’m sure, will be another side effect. I’m just going to give it time and take it at my pace.
So, has Paleo changed my life in 1 month? I think I’m better than I’ve been in a long, long time and I’m not going back on to a SAD ever… What the future holds, I’m not sure, but that I am certain about. It’s Paleo for me from now on.