Completing the 30 day strict paleo challenge

So this week I got to the end of the 30 days of eating only strict paleo, there were many ups and downs during those 30 days.  The first few days of total panic and feeling really rough, then the gradual acceptance of there was actually loads of food I can eat.  Then the discovery of new foods I hadn’t eaten before.

One of the real things I have loved is looking at my plate of food and seeing all the different colours on it and knowing it was all natural food.

I did weigh myself on starting, but due to my scales being crap, possibly as I had removed them from the bathroom after this post, and they were under a pile of ‘stuff’ in the kitchen, at the end of the 30 days they were giving me reading that varied by 11lbs so not at all a reflection.

But what I can report on is the fact I have gone down a clothes size, that my face looks very different, and I have got PR’s at Crossfit every time I have tried to lift something heavier since I started the 30 days.

One thing I hoped for when I started was the ‘zing’ that everyone talks of, the huge burst of energy that hits in week 3.  But at week 3 it hit me, being a single parent to a 5 year old who doesn’t stop, working at and running 2 businesses alone, not getting enough sleep, being a general stress head and then doing Crossfit a few times a week does not really make for suddenly having a zing!

I think also as I wasn’t eating THAT badly before either that the difference in energy levels maybe wasn’t as noticeable.

I spent vast amounts of time during the 30 days trying to judge how I would feel at the end about what I would do after. Would I carry on doing paleo at some % or just try and eat clean. Would I spend day 31 guzzling chocolate and lattes?

So day 31 has come and gone and it is now actually 34 and apart from relaxing a bit to make and eat some paleo cookies that had *gasp* honey in I still haven’t had any none paleo food.  But I will, but when I want it, instead of just eating it for the sake of it.

So my intention is to carry on with paleo at 80-90%, meaning if I eat an average of 21 meals a week 1 or 2 may be non paleo, or have non paleo stiff in them, and then also odd non paleo things like birthday cake.

The Positives

  • I have improved my performance at Crossfit
  • I have lost body fat
  • I have bought and cooked lots of new foods, including mango, salmon, cod and avocado
  • I am trusting myself to experiment (a bit) and cook food as it is.
  • Realising EVERYTHING tastes better cooked in butter
  • Not being hungry
  • Discovering basic amazing food like bacon with salad
  • Becoming addicted to roast sweet potato and roast parsnips (neither I liked before I started)

The negatives (for me)

  • Having to cook every meal, no quick grabs ready meals cooked from a box
  • Having to wash up from all the cooking, lots of pans and saucepans all the time
  • Feeling like I am spending all my life in the kitchen
  • Not being able to run into a petrol station and grab lunch. I tried once and ended up with a banana
  • Having to think ahead for every meal and prepare and shop

Nearly all the negatives are to do with time, and that is something I lack in life, but I accept that for the benefit it needs to happen. The alternative is to go back to living on things in a box that go *ping* before you eat them.

The main feedback is the fact I am carrying on, and wanting to do it with nothing to prove.  I know I will find it harder to do the 80% thing than the strict in a way as I have to find my own balance and acceptance of non paleo.




1 Comment

  1. 15 April , 2013 / 10:19 pm

    You have done so well! I have not tried to live without oats or gluten free bread or sushi…

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