Category Archives: Lifestyle

Paleo pity party

I’ve been struggling with my diet. The last 2 weeks of January were so hectic at work because one of the bigger projects I’m managing has started ramping up. My team commenced their contracts and because for a large part they’re highly skilled specialists with as much focus on exceptional quality work as I have, so we’ve been work-shopping and brainstorming for up to 12 hours a day.

This is not ideal because what usually happens is that somebody’s tummy would grumble and we’d realise we have to eat. As a result, I’ve not been cooking as much which means I end up buying food and eating badly (by badly I mean one too many Peanut Butter Bliss smoothies from Kauai). I have been having dinner quite late too, often after 8pm. Exercise has also suffered because I’ve been so tired.

I really need to get my butt into gear and go back to looking after how I get and expend my energy.

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Get in muh belly

It’s no secret that I am easily swayed by good food. With the additional efforts in my diet, I sometimes hit a mental block when it comes to grocery shopping and meal preparation.

One of the biggest difficulties I had was making the switch from a honey-sweetened grain-based breakfast (e.g. oats or semolina porridge, I’m old school) to a protein + veg/fruit meal. I grew tired of eggs very quickly, so my strategy was to mix it up between sweet options and savoury.

Some of the sweet options include:

  1. Chia pudding (vanilla, coconut or chocolate)
  2. Fruit with nuts and seeds
  3. Gluten, sugar and dairy free “cake” (almond & coconut flour) with a side of fruit. I’ll post a recipe soon.

Savoury options are basically dinner leftovers or salad with some type of animal protein, even biltong or egg in addition to the obvious things.

For dinner and lunch I do include legumes on occasion though it’s not strictly paleo. Eliminating it from my diet for a month didn’t change anything noticeable in terms of digestive comfort so I decided to keep it as part of my repertoire, although less frequently than before since I used canned beans more often than dried and the plan is to reduce processed food.

Let me know if you’d like me to share a weekly meal plan example for some inspiration or recipes. I’d love to know how you’re eating healthier, and what your recommendations are to break any mental barriers related to food.

Lifestyle shake-up

As part of my TTC journey, I introduced the paleo lifestyle in December 2013. The plan is to gradually intensify the adherence to paleo until I have cut out processed foods, added sugars, and grains. For example, my typical meals consist of a non-dairy protein, a fat and vegetables. I try to snack on fruit but mostly end up going for nuts because I’m greedy.

Drinking about 2 litres of water a day is easy because it’s a habit I grew up with (Thanks Mommy!). Sometimes when I’m feeling fancy I’ll add mint, lime, lemon, cucumber in combination or individually to the 1,75 litre glass water jug (approx. R69.00 at Pick n Pay) I keep on my desk at work. I’ll try for about one and a half jugs of water at work and then drink more when I get home. I also try and eat dinner as early as possible so I tend to cook in bursts during the week (enough for breakfast and lunch and maybe adapt it to a second supper) and ensure I have a mix of fresh and frozen veggies on hand to add variety.

Late December when AF showed up I was PMSing like a crazy person and coupled with the frustration of another negative cycle, had a carbohydrate meltdown. I think I spent 3 days mostly watching TTC vlogs. I was also crying my eyes out at pretty much anything, including those annoying Youtube adverts. Many chocolates, almond flour pancakes, a baby cow’s worth of biltong and a banana-Bar-One waffle and ice cream later I realised I needed to pull myself together. I’ve picked up weight because of that malarkey which I’m a bit nervous to measure, I can tell for sure in the fit of my clothes that I’ve become more lardy after just two weeks.

PMS

What the low carb lifestyle means is that theoretically my body can process insulin a lot better (see the (pseudo?) sciencey stuff here). In the 3 weeks of my paleo SleekGeek Reboot before said meltdown, I definitely felt my clothes loosen up but more importantly felt my energy levels were a lot more stable and constant.

I’ve since jumped back on the wagon and continue tracking my food diary on My Fitness Pal (can’t seem to find a Blackberry app for it, boo!). Since I started tracking my daily food intake in November 2013, I’ve become a LOT more aware of portions and quality of food. Oh my goodness, I had not realised I was eating nearly double the calories needed to get to and maintain my goal weight. SO Gross.

Next step is to get back into exercise since my running injury. I’ve bought a modest cozzie so that I can hit the lap pool. This swimming top looks a bit goofy but it does its job of covering what I want covered. I got plain black swimming leggings to go with it, and of course I wear a bikini underneath because I’m not a crazy person and I have a weird complex about nipples showing through fabric.

Quote

Prayer

Yaa Baari, Yaa Musawwir

The Creator of order, the shaper of beauty.

I’ve read that fasting seven days in a row and opening one’s fast with repetition of this thikr (rememberance of God) aids in conception.