It isn’t easy

I like to think that when I talk about the Paleo/Primal diet, I am honest about the fact that it isn’t easy. I hope I haven’t been setting all of my followers and readers up for disappointment when they take their first few steps into Paleo/Primal diet and are slammed with new obstacles. I don’t know what obstacles you will face. I can only tell you about my struggles, but I struggle.

Yesterday was Valentine’s Day (or Singles Awareness Day). I didn’t post anything because to be honest, I have been exhausted all week. Monday I left work early because I was exhausted. Tuesday morning I found out I needed to make gluten-free sugar cookies for my son and Valentines for all the children in his class. So Tuesday I scoured the internet for a sugar cookie alternative (and found one), all the while trying to figure out what I would do for Valentines–I would have to make them since we were on our last couple bucks (from paying rent and bills). Wednesday was spent slowly formulating Valentines ideas. My son is 17 months old and in a class with peers, so I wasn’t about to give out candy. I came up with the following.

homemade valentines with Despicable Me minions

So yesterday with Valentines and gluten-free sugar cookies (and frosting) made, I just wanted to not do anything. Instead I read and commented on other people’s blogs, something I like to do everyday but usually can only do one day a week.

I came across this blog post Paleish by Caitdow, and I have to say that her struggles right now are valid. I don’t know how some people who just jump into Paleo with both feet can say they feel great immediately. I certainly didn’t and I tried to ease myself into it. My husband certainly didn’t feel so great at first. We went from eating a lot of processed foods and grains, few vegetables, and a moderate amount of fruit to completely shifting gears to eating more meat, a lot more vegetables, and no grains. Our bodies didn’t like it at first.

Sure, we saw weight loss. I dropped seven pounds in that first week! But I was tired and my cravings were horrible. I dreamed of bread. Bread was everywhere! People were posting cupcake recipes and bread recipes and talking about food I couldn’t have, but that I wanted. I was irritable. Nothing I could eat tasted very good, but still I tried, hanging on the hope that everything Robb Wolf and Mark Sisson said would be true. I longed for the day when my stomach would no longer rule my life.

After two weeks we both wanted some other foods. We were tired of the same meals we had been eating for two weeks. Something similar that Julie from Homegrown Paleo is familiar with. Today, she posted about Sometimes Being Paleo is hard. And she touches on a lot of points that I think anyone who has given up processed foods can relate to as far as being bored with meals. To be honest, her week sounded a lot like mine!

My point to this long blog post that started with me describing my week to talking about how Paleo/Primal can be tough for anyone (just maybe not everyone), is as Julie says, you can do it. Last night I had half of a cupcake (shared with my husband) that was not Paleo. It was a treat and this morning I have been paying for that treat. I don’t really feel like I have failed my diet. I allowed myself  half of a cupcake. Today I will focus on eating Paleo/Primal again, which may be more boring. With this being my second time getting into this diet (or as close to the diet that my nutritionist will allow) I haven’t felt the negative effects nearly as keenly as I did the first time. But as I did mention in a comment on Caitdow’s post, when I tried adding carbohydrates to my diet, my body hated it!

So don’t be discouraged. Find what works for you. I feel pretty good with what I am currently doing, but I know I want to try changing that eventually to challenge myself and see how my body reacts.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Image © Imabase | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock Photos

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4 responses to “It isn’t easy

  1. Amy, I’m glad you didn’t call your cupcake a “Cheat.” You had the control to choose to eat it and you did. Yes, you’re paying for it today but life goes on. This is my second go-round with clean eating as well and I’ve been loving it a lot more now that I have started cooking delicious things. But…sometimes I don’t have the time or energy and you just have to get the job done. 🙂 ALso, when my hubby got on board he didn’t feel well either, but stuck it out! After a while we figured out that he needs more starchy carbs than what he was eating. I on the other hand just don’t need them.

    • Julie,
      I guess it depends on how you define a “cheat,” but thank you. I didn’t really think of it like that. I want to be honest when I do go off track because it is going to happen. I am not perfect, and I don’t expect others to be either. To be honest, I think I would just like to see more people give this gluten-free/clean eating thing a try. I am happy if I can get back into the swing of things and not let my half of cupcake decision to take me completely off course and off this way of eating.
      I admittedly struggled a bit Friday and Saturday, but Sunday I was able to get back on track completely. I will likely post more about those struggles this week sometime.
      My husband hasn’t been nearly as healthy lately. And when we did do the paleo diet, he too needed more carbs. I am happy that I have gotten to the point that it doesn’t bother me as much to see him eat starchy carbs, but lately it has been bread and buns. 😦

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