Monthly Archives: April 2011

Day 8/45. I’ve moved house to the 150’s

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Sunday I enjoyed an excellent training ride. The first half I felt like I should have stayed home because of a sore throat and sniffles, but I took it easy and eventually I felt like I was in top form.¬† I was attentive to the limits for the first two hours and then I was overcome by the sunshine and good weather and went very fast for about 45 minutes and then had a leisurely cool down. (oops. I’m not apologetic or repentant, however. ūüôā

What a difference a year makes. I feel more confident in my bike handling and I don’t need the granny ring to stay within the heart rate range.

Low carb Paleo continues to feel sustainable and healthy for me.¬† At the gym Thursday the scale showed 27% body fat, down from 35% before Christmas. I’ve put on muscle and burned off fat. And I think I’ve finally broken through the plateau of 160-61 where I’ve been hovering for more than a month.

Sunday’s eats:

Calories 2,569
Fat 115.3g 40%
Carbohydrate 238.4g 36%
Dietary Fiber 33.7
Protein 152.3g 25%

Greek yogurt & strawberries (twice); salmon and cucumbers; Hammer Perpetum during the ride, plus dates! fruit smoothie with egg whites; pate and cucumbers; one small but dangerous handful of freshly popped popcorn; steak, fresh white asparagus, green beans.

While riding, I preferred the dates to the Perpetum.

6a calories don’t count.

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so roll call on Saturday’s food:

spinach omelette, coffee with cream, a few blueberries and Greek yogurt, Brussels sprouts, duck liver pate with green salad and walnut pieces, some yummy raspberries crushed in some mineral water, gorgeous baked salmon with lemon butter and capers, red chard, salad, some strawberries with more walnuts and a dab of Greek yogurt plus some shredded coconut.

Grams Calories %-Cals
Calories
1,901
Fat
136.2
1,201
63
%
Saturated
30.2
268
14
%
Polyunsaturated
41.1
354
19
%
Monounsaturated
36.6
326
17
%
Carbohydrate
78.9
294
15
%
Dietary Fiber
26.3
Protein
104.9
409
21
%
Alcohol
0.0
0
0
%
Fat  63%
Carbs

15 %

Protein

21%

Alcohol

0%

I am really enjoying not thinking about calories. I love thick 10% Greek Yogurt. I spent years eating low fat yogurt and it never made me thin. Same with Diet Coke. The few raspberries I crushed in the mineral water were really tasty. Without sugar and starch, my taste buds are much more sensitive.


Day 5 & 6: magic cloud

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when the internet is not accessible, suddenly I realise how much a part of my life it has become.

My weight & body fat are both dropping nicely. 159.5¬†158.5 this morning. ¬†Thursday gym fest. Friday dune ride and swim practice. I felt a lot of power in my stroke yesterday. I need to bring my food log up to date. I recorded items on paper when I couldn’t reach the magic cloud. ¬†Eating according to appetite and minding my carbohydrate intake is SO MUCH EASIER that trying for a specific calorie count (e.g., 1600 or 1700) and a particular ratio. ¬†Taubes suggests that the ¬†diets that work do so because of the reduction in refined carbs (give up sodas, sweets, desserts, cut back on portions, etc.). ¬†I was finding it quite time consuming to plan meals ahead of time – frankly, so time consuming that I rarely did it. I would check my “balance” before dinner and then adjust. ¬†The amount of mental gymnastics that seemed to be required to lose weight struck me as unnatural.

My graph on the Hacker’s Diet includes an estimated calorie deficit: ¬†“Weekly¬†loss¬†0.62¬†pounds. Daily¬†deficit:¬†311¬†calories.” ¬†¬†The idea that my weight would change with a mere deficit of 50 calories a week seemed unreasonable. ¬†Granted, the website offers a traditional calorie-deficit theory of weight loss. What I like is the weighted average of the weight loss graph. That’s more helpful to me to avoid feeling buffeted by daily changes in the scale. ¬†For the same reason, I also like “The Google 15“. ¬† ¬†You can see the obvious progress I am making with No Sugar No Starch.

Day 4: and then boredom sets in….

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I’m just waiting around until I lose some more weight. Yesterday’s numbers:

Grams Calories %-Cals
Calories
1,649
Fat
126.1
1,122
67
%
Saturated
40.6
361
21
%
Polyunsaturated
8.3
73
4
%
Monounsaturated
41.5
367
22
%
Carbohydrate
42.9
165
10
%
Dietary Fiber
20.1
Protein
97.7
398
24
%

ÔĽŅRoll call: bacon & eggs; eggplant dip, smoked dry sausage, green olives, green salad; cheese and olives at a party; green beans, homemade snapper and Chinese veg. soup that I made with coconut oil and cream. Delicious! Oh, and an Atkins shake while I ran an errand.

This is easy. It’s also backwards. Eat when I’m hungry. Make sure to add enough fat to every meal. That’s just plain weird. It goes against all the popular instructions on how to lose weight.¬† Another example of the madness of the crowds? Perhaps.¬† It really turns on its head all the fat & food phobias.¬†¬† I’m not counting calories. I’m only restricting carbohydrates. And it’s working.

I’m reading Why We Get Fat and What to Do About It. I find Mr Taubes’ explanations clear and persuasive.¬† The theories match my own experiences. Of course, that means they’re true for me. N=1. Since I am not a public health official, it is all that matters. That I can find something that works for me.

However, I care about the general state of public health.¬† The book shows how prejudiced we are¬† when we accuse obese people of sloth and gluttony.¬† That fat woman eats too much and needs to exercise. What’s wrong with her!¬† What if that fat woman actually is suffering from a mis-diagnosed glandular disorder? That she is ravenous because her body deprives her of the use of the stored fat, leaving her under-nourished no matter what she eats.¬† The result would be hunger and fatigue, no?

Instead of exploring this idea, conversations on how-to-lose-weight turn towards eating disorders and emotional eating and the psychology of weight loss.  I hear echoes of psychologist Judith Beck trying to persuade me that hunger is not an emergency. Well, when I have a hypoglycemic episode, hunger is an emergency.    I am finding that the types of food I choose have a direct relationship to whether I feel full after eating and how long it takes to feel hungry again.  When I choose fats & proteins, I feel pretty good for a long while. Then, when I feel hungry again, I eat.  Simple as that.

Now that I have apparently dialed into both maintenance (which I did so easily the last month) and weight loss, I have a lot of free mental energy to put to good use.

Day 3: I fell through the floor

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I was delighted by the scale this morning registering 159.5, this especially after an intense training day and sore legs this morning.  When I look back at my training logs and the inflammation I felt, I wonder now if that inflammation was related to diet.  Looking back, I felt nervous about getting enough food to fuel my training and so used sports drinks and carbs. The result was bloat and weight gain.  This makes perfect sense when I look through the lens of hormonal balance (biology, not physics).

After reading about nutrition in Maffetone’s tome on Endurance Training, I decided it was reasonable to have fruit juice during intense training sessions. I had an intense 15 minutes of intervals on an indoor bicycle, which zapped me, and I wanted to lift too. So, I had some fresh crushed fruit at the club (about 330 ml). ¬† This put the carb count up higher.

Yesterday’s numbers:

Day 2/45

Weight 160.5

Calories 2,093
Fat 136.4 grams ( 57 %)
Carbohydrate 82.8 grams (15 %)
Net carbs 47.1 grams
Dietary Fiber 35.1 grams
Protein 144.8 grams (28 %)

Day 2: keep going!

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I’m going to run a day behind in reporting so I can get some sleep, in addition to logging & blogging.

My food plan is simple. If I’m hungry, eat protein & fat. Eat leafy greens. Read labels; count carbs.¬† Fruit/juice only during or immediately after intense exercise. I was reading my new favorite book last night – Dr Maffetone’s Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing.¬† He suggests stripping out sugars and refined carbs from your diet to improve your athletic performance. I feel encouraged by this advice. I was feeling a little worried that the way I eat would detract from my training and racing.¬† It looks like the opposite is true.

Day 1/45
weight: 161.0
food: going very well so far.
moves: ran 50 minutes. On tired legs, but I kept moving.
energy: good.

So Monday’s numbers were

kcals 1,489
Fat g 114.5
Carbohydrate g 43.0
Dietary Fiber g 12.4
Protein g 79.5

I want to eat more protein than this, but I was not hungry so I didn’t eat.

Ingredient list:

scrambled eggs (made with cream) & bacon, green tea.
black coffee. didn’t finish it.
tenderloin, broccoli, cauliflower and sliced carrots, lots of lettuce
slice of cheese and some macadamia nuts
(post run) sweet potato (boiled)
tomato sauce and meatballs, 1/4 c pumpkin (boiled)
green tea

See for yourself.  Link to Fitday.  I might just put this link in a side-bar widget so I can write about more interesting things than what I put into my mouth.

Recipe: Salmon Soup

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Serves 4.

Ingredients
200 grams of smoked salmon
2 cubes chicken stock
200 grams of shelled prawns
A few sprigs of chives
Salt and pepper

Crumble the stock cubes into a saucepan containing 1 litre of water and bring to the boil. Cut the salmon into thin strips. Chop the chives and decorate the prawns with them. Divide the hot stock into the soup bowls. Add the sliced ingredients and pepper. Sprinkle with chopped chives and serve immediately.

Reboot Day 1: New 45 day accountability push

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I’ve been hovering between 160-162 for a month. I’ve been eating very well and training hard. All good.¬† But the starting line draws closer with each passing day, and I’m determined to “lighten up”.

So I’ve teamed up with a kick-ass accountability partner whose inner drill sergeant gives me nightmares. We’ve agreed to a 45-day challenge. We were going to make it a 30-day challenge, but we’re endurance athletes.¬† And 45 days is well, longer than 30.

For the next two weeks, I’m stripping the carbs from my plate, specifically fruit smoothies. I think that will get the scale moving again.¬†¬† Here’s my reminder: Rootein.

Plus I am accountable for my triathlon training plan, especially swim practice.  So you can look forward to a daily whinge report from me here.

The numbers from the gym scale on Thursday were heartening:¬† lower body fat, more muscle. That’s positive change!

Days 10-18: getting up to date

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Sorry fan club. But keeping you informed rated last on my dance card the last¬† 10 days or so. Since my last post (last month!), I’ve been earning my keep.¬† Despite the long hours, I’ve trained with purpose and logged my food and stayed “pretty pure.” I can report one slice of bread. One pain au chocolate (this morning). One sweet and sour gummy worm. More than a few lattes. Otherwise, clean eats.

Daily averages:  the last week has been maintenance (1900 calories, 100 g protein, 200 g carbs, 83 g fat).   The carb count is out of whack due to a 3.5 hour bike ride. Carb load the days leading up to the ride plus food fest during the ride.  Nevertheless, I continue to drop body fat, down another 1% in the last two weeks, plus added some muscle. This according to the oracle at the gym.

Monday I will be joined by an accountability buddy. A real live person. Not just an imaginary internet crowd and my one subscriber.¬† And we’re on for 45 days. I like competition. If she can do it, so can I.¬† And my accountability buddy helped me get to last year’s 70.3 starting line.¬† So I know she’ll kick my a$$ if I slip up even a bit.¬† That means I’m back to daily check-in’s. And public shaming accountability.¬† How about you? Are you moving toward or away from your goals? There’s no standing still. Time never stops. And nothing lasts.

As an apology of sorts for being AWOL, I’ll give you this link to read about Paleo 2.0.¬† Food for thought. Now I’m going out for a run.