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Ice skating day - going out to lunch - going to Costco

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Today I had an ice skating lesson after I had a rest day yesterday. I was on the ice for about two hours and got a good leg and core workout.
After eating a breakfast of yogurt, cranberries, 1/2 banana and nuts I did not feel the need to eat again until 3 pm. We went out to lunch after ice skating and I was happy to see that the restaurant we went to had a gluten-free, lower carb menu. I ordered steak with broccoli, peppers and zucchini cooked in olive oil with lemon and a mixed side-salad also with olive oil and lemon. The veggies were cooked a little too soft and could have used some seasoning, I'm not used to eating plain vegetables, but overall not a bad experience. Dinner at home is an omelett with onion, broccoli and cheddar cheese with some hot sauce added and a big leafy salad on the side. I'll probably have more of the blueberry ice cream I made two days ago for dessert.
Yesterday I had a late breakfast and did not get a chance to eat lunch before 4pm. I ended up having only blueberry ice cream for dessert.
The good news is that I was able to buy an ice cream maker at Costco today, the kind that makes ice cream in about 20 minutes without salt. Can't wait to try it out this weekend. A friend gave me some extra raw milk because she is out of town so I will get to experiment.
I was happy to see that Costco now carries organic lettuce as well as organic carrots. Going to Costco the first time since going low-carb was interesting. We used to gobble up all the free food they offer and for the first time I turned down 90% of it. I did indulge in some yummy double cream cheese of different varieties. Also stocked up on fish oil since I rarely get the chance to buy fish at a reasonable price. Unfortunately none of their nuts are raw and very few items still are organic, so our food co-op and local farmers and our garden are still my main source of food.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FREELADY 4/6/2012 7:35PM

    I enjoy the reports and it's valuable to me, to hear how you handle these things!

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GRACEMCDOG 4/6/2012 6:54PM

    That's odd your Costco doesn't carry raw nuts: mine has almonds, filberts, pecans, walnuts and pine nuts. Great you found an ice cream maker there. That's where I got mine, too.

I am in 7th heaven that one of my new dog boarding clients is a local fisherman and likes to barter with fresh fish. He brings us a big chunk of salmon or halibut--otherwise I would rarely buy fish.

I know! The only samples we ever try are the cheeses, too. Oh, and one time they were sampling their wild blueberries, which were quite nice.

I made it through my 24 hour fast with no trouble as far as hunger. I didn't ever feel hungry and had only green tea and lots of water. BUT I have had a pretty intense headache at the base of my skull for three days now. Not sure what that's about...possibly I'm burning fat and dumping toxins into my blood stream.

Comment edited on: 4/6/2012 6:58:18 PM

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RUSSELL_40 4/6/2012 9:26AM

    I like the idea of hot sauce.. After 472 days of scrambled eggs or omelettes, I started using spicy mustard to give it a kick. ..lol

It is a good idea to cook up some meat beforehand for snacks HISTORYRUNNER. I eat dinner at 11:00, but cook it in the afternoon, but if you work midday, cooking up some meat while cooking breakfast and eating will not be as fresh, but is good enough. better than eating off plan because it is easy.

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TAMPATINK67 4/6/2012 7:37AM

    Had to laugh - the warehouse "free food" became my nemesis first because I too am primal/Paleo, but also because I had/have a significant amount of weight to lose, and "free" extra calories were something I just didn't need - but the food samples had always been part of the "experience". Sounds like you are in a much more confident place related to your diet and exercise and that you passed these things with ease!

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    Sounds really tasty. You made me hungry, and now that I've read The Primal Blueprint I know I should fry up a steak of my own at 10:35 pm. Bummer that I'm too tired to do so and don't want to do the 15 mile round trip to procure meat! But really, it looks like you are doing well. I hope the ice cream is yummy. emoticon emoticon

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Low-carb is getting very comfortable again

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Since getting back to low-carb yesterday my body has already adjusted again. My weight was down a pound to 137.6, mostly water loss probably. Of course this time I was just dropping from about 80-100grams/day of carbs to under 50grams/day since I just cut out the sugar. Yesterday I felt a little tired at the end of the day. Today my energy level is back to (my new) normal.
Today I probably ate a little more than yesterday and exercised a little less.
I did about an hour of walking, 20 minutes of strength training and just 15 minutes of jogging, total calorie burn about 600.
Breakfast was plain yogurt with blueberries, flaxseed meal and nuts
Lunch was a big plate from the salad bar at our food co-op with spinach, romaine lettuce, tomato, radish,, cucumber, red onion, mushrooms, walnuts, smoked mozzarella cheese, chicken (dark meat), and vinaigrette with at least 5 tablespoons of oliveoil.
I enjoyed a cup of coffee (half decaf) with lots of half and half afterwards.
Dinner was browned ground beef, stir-fried kale (in coconut oil) and a hard-boiled egg, all with generous amounts of melted cheese on top.
I decided to experiment with making low-carb ice cream again. I added almost a quart of heavy cream to pack of frozen blueberries in a metal bowl, added about 2 tablespoons of Xylitol for sweetener and stuck it in the freezer. The frozen berries make the cream freeze faster. To keep it smooth I stirred once about every 20 minutes and after 2 hours I had ice cream.
I may eventually buy an ice cream maker if I can find one that does not require the use of a ton of salt.
In any case, I had a big bowl (about 1 ) of homemade blueberry ice cream for dessert.
I love low-carb eating. emoticon
My guesstimate for total calories for today is 2500.

I have been thinking about low-carb eating a lot lately. When I tell people that I'm on a low-carb diet nobody even blinks and everybody acts like that is a completely normal thing to do. But when I tell people that I don't eat any grains or beans I get surprised looks and people ask me why. This tells me that many people don't really understand the reason for eating low-carb. They may have heard about the Atkins diet a long time ago and even believe that it works but they can't imagine anyone eating that way long-term. In fact, sometimes I can barely imagine it myself, not because there are any foods that I miss, just because I'm surrounded by foods that are high-carb everywhere. Just today I walked into a Starbucks and realized that there is NOTHING that fits into my eating style. I also intentionally walked into a local bakery and asked if they carry any gluten-free items. The sales lady told me, "yes, but only on Wednesday". I asked what the ingredients in the bread are and she said she had no idea. I thanked her and left.
I also ate at a Chinese restaurant the other day and asked what gluten -free choices they had. Surprisingly they told me a couple of dishes I could order and said that if requested they can use a soy sauce without wheat in it. We ended up ordering green bean chicken and hot and sour soup, both very tasty and the portions were enough to take some home. There was probably a little sugar and a little corn starch in the soup.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEAGLEMAMA2 4/13/2012 11:38AM

    Thanks for sharing...I always love to see what you are up to! emoticon

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CAJUNTAM 4/6/2012 12:13PM

    I actually make a version of ice cream every night. I use a handful of frozen strawberries , frozen blueberries or whatever I have. I use a Magic Bullet and add enough heavy whipping cream to come about an inch below the top of the fruit. I usually use vanilla stevia (sweet leaf) to sweeten. Sometimes I add cocoa powder or dark chocolate nibs. blend and serve. It isn't as hard as ice cream but more like a soft serve. We love it and eat it almost every night. It wouldn't fall under Paleo b/c it is dairy but definately Primal allowable!

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CAJUNTAM 4/6/2012 12:05PM

    wow! looks like you are doing great! Food shouldn't be boring!

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PAMAPPLE 4/5/2012 10:03AM

    I have tried eating low-carb but felt dizzy and light-headed, so I had to add grains, then felt better. Maybe, I didn't eat enough calories since I noticed how many calories you consumed.

Congrats on losing weight! Looks like low-carb is working for you, and thanks for sharing your diet:))

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GRACEMCDOG 4/4/2012 7:35PM

    I used to have one of those Donvier hand cranks. It worked pretty good for a single or small double serving. I have a CuisineArt electric now that is great. They have them during the warmer months at Costco for much less than anywhere else I've seen. I'm going to play with making a custard-based stevia recipe when the strawberries ripen. Exciting to think that one can eat as much as you describe and maintain or even continue to lose as long as the carbs stay low. I had steak cooked in coconut oil and a poached egg with asparagus slathered with butter and a slice of almond butter toast for breakfast. My usual breakfast is the same as yours except I include more protein. I ate a more robust one than usual because I wanted to try fasting today for 24 hours. Funny, I ended up in a bakery today, too, as my husband wanted to try having a hot cross bun (he had two) and is now paying for it with the first bad outbreak of rosacea he's had since going wheat-free. I was quite content with a cup of herbal tea, though the aromas were really lovely. I always feel nostalgic in a bakery, rather like I've come home, since I worked in them for so many years. It's been 9.5 hours since I ate anything and I'm not hungry yet. No exercise today other than a 2.5 K walk with the dogs.

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CONRADBURK 4/4/2012 3:59PM

    I too have noticed that everything at Starbucks is made from wheat. It is very popular here in the USA! It is wonderful to be eating whea- free! I will try limiting my carbs better and maybe I will have more energy. I am aiming for 80 g gross carbs per day. Wish me luck!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CARLA-216 4/4/2012 1:36PM

    Your food choices sound really GOOD!

As for an ice cream maker that requires no salt.... I once borrowed a friend's Donvier and it is awesome! I bought my parents one and would love one for myself. This little gem takes no salt or electricity. You freeze the bowl that you make the ice cream in. Then you pour your ice cream ingredients into the bowl, put it in the outer container, put the lid on with paddle attached and sit it on the table. Every so often (like once every minute or two) you turn the crank. In 15-20 minutes you have ice cream. Check it out if you're interested: http://www.amazon.com/Donvier-83740

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LADYJAKE1 4/4/2012 12:23PM

    Sounds like you are doing great.

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HEALTHY4ME 4/4/2012 9:54AM

    Awesome and again thanks for the food ideas. I do find that like you I go to Tim Hortons for dad every morning and I am having no problem not getting anything.
I ate well yesterday, now today have to go take dad to dr, and must get some groceries bought especially at the veggie store ( much cheaper and fresher than grocery store).
Have a super day. I have my walk with dog done later on will walk on my own, eliminating the down hill and go a bit farther to help these knees out.

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MYLADY4 4/4/2012 9:35AM

    Sounds delish!!!

Can't wait till I am done training for my half. Get to cut back on the carbs, granted I am not going over board on them but upping them a bit has helped my running. I do like the oven sweet potato fries though but the bananas, I wount miss.

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EGALITAIRE 4/4/2012 7:06AM

    Its actually fun to experiment with what works and what we can eat. I don't miss the grain or processed carbs at all - now ice cream - that was always my addiction. Will have to look into making my own - commercial ice cream has too much junk.

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Back to running - this time while eating low-carb

Monday, April 02, 2012

Today the weather was finally spring-like.
It was time to get back to running after taking about one month off to mostly devote to ice skating.
I'm going back to running at least 3 times/week, maybe as much as 6 times depending on how I feel. I will also do more horseback riding again after the ice-skating season is completely over next week.
Today I ran for 30 minutes, 2.3 miles, average heart rate 134.
I also spent about 2 hours walking and 20 minutes strength training so my total calorie burn was about 1000.
My carbs are back to under 50 net carbs for the first time in a while today.
Breakfast was some blueberries, plain full-fat yogurt, walnuts, ground flaxseed
Lunch was a hard-boiled egg, some pumpkin seeds, a piece of cheese and a small glass of full-fat raw milk.
Dinner was a duck-egg omelett with mustard greens, tomato and cheese.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FIT_MAMA_2_FOUR 4/3/2012 8:17AM

    Exercise plan sounds great and the menu sounds yummy:)

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HEALTHY4ME 4/3/2012 6:59AM

    Thanks for putting your meals on, cos I have a super hard time keeping my carbs that low. Seems even when I eat salad ect something bumps it up by days end.
Have a great day and I am back to evening walking now that it is light out longer.

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HOUNDLOVER1 4/3/2012 1:58AM

emoticon you did not see my portion size. My rough guesstimates for calories are 600 for breakfast, lunch about 400 calories, dinner probably another 800 calories since it was a 4-egg omelett.
I have to say I don't always exercise that much, but today was a nice day and my day off so I had the time.
You are definitely right that it is important not to undereat and end up burning muscle.

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SUPERMOUSE35 4/3/2012 1:56AM

    I finally got back on track today, as well. Here's hoping we both keep it up tomorrow. :D

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DIVEGODDESS 4/3/2012 1:07AM

    You burn 1000 calories and that's all you eat? Wow, I would die!! I don't do cardio or run and I eat about 5 x much as you!! Be careful not to lose muscle!

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GRACEMCDOG 4/2/2012 11:56PM

    You're amazing and such an inspiration to me when I start to wimp out, like I did today. I just couldn't face the torrential downpour. It didn't let up for one single minute today. My driveway is so flooded I'd have to wear Wellies to get to the road. Gonna do some Zumba and ride the steel pony.

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TAMPATINK67 4/2/2012 9:41PM

    Menu sounds gourmet!

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Caballo Blanco - you will be missed

Sunday, April 01, 2012


For those of you who don't know who he is, Caballo (real name Micah True) was made famous by Chris Mc Dougall's book "Born to Run".
He lived a simple life in the Copper Canyon of Mexico with the Raramuri, also called the Tarahumara Indians. He was known well among ultra-runners and "Born to Run" spread the word about him.
I only met Micah True once when he was on a speaking tour in the United States and gave a talk in a small venue near where we live. The topic was not running, minimalist running or ultra-running but the concerns of the people he made his own, the Raramuri. He was passionate about them because they had touched his heart and he did everything in his power to help them with humility, grace and enthusiasm. He was the organizer or the Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon and a tour guide for people who wanted to visit the Copper Canyon, all in order to support the Raramuri. When asked about his shoes he said they were good because he got them for free. When asked what he eats to help his running the answer was corn and beans.
He was my role model as a runner, not because of his speed or running style but because of his character. He was a winner wherever he went because he treated people with kindness, sincerity and warmth. I'm very sad he is gone, but he deserved to be in heaven.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DRB13_1 4/5/2012 11:07PM

    Your having met him and been inspired as well as able to see the character in him will help keep his memory alive. Thank you for sharing your remembrances. May the Cooper Canyon Run be held in his honor from now on.

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PAPAMIKIE 4/3/2012 3:00PM

    He was a runner, and it sounds like he died running, what more can one ask for.

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    Such a sad situation.

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LINDAKAY228 4/2/2012 3:58PM

    I was so sorry to hear about it and had been following the story since last week when he first went missing. He went missing about 45 miles from where I live in the mountain areas I love and I've been to some of the area he went missing in quite a few times over the years. Being right here in my own area made it hit even more. I was so hoping they would find him alive and so sad when I finally heard they had found him already passed. I know that he died doing what he loved best it seems, being out on trails in nature and at peace with the surroundings. He will be missed.

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ABSOLUTZER0 4/2/2012 3:19PM

    I was on Twitter, as usual, when the news hit. I saw so many trail and ultra runners sending their regards. As I stated there and on my FB, the best thing we can do to remember him is to continue to inspire and motivate others. He was a true ambassador. His legacy lives on through us. #RunFree #RunHappy

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KRISZTA11 4/2/2012 2:05PM

    So sad.
He was a good man, a great runner and he did a lot to help the Tarahumara.

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DEFIANTVEGAN 4/2/2012 11:02AM

    That's Sad thanks for the info. May he RIP.

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BOBBIENORTHERN1 4/2/2012 10:46AM

  I never even heard of him. Thank you for this blog that made me aware of such an awesome person.

I wonder if it was his heart?

I hope you can blog about the cause of his passing over to the other side if you find out.

He loved running and loved people and loved life.

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GWBACH 4/2/2012 10:12AM

    A true runner, RIP

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REJ7777 4/2/2012 7:48AM

    Some people leave the world a better place for their having passed through it. emoticon

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HICKOK-HALEY 4/2/2012 1:59AM

    I read that today, and to was saddened. Born to run is one of my Hubby's favorite movies, and he isn't a runner, he just admired the man. Micah was a true gentlemen, and will be missed by many.

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FLAMENM 4/2/2012 1:04AM

    Everyone here in New MExico is sad that the Gila claimed another person. But it also is inspiring to know that he left us doing wat e loved - running on the trails of a great wilderness area.

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SUNNYWBL 4/2/2012 12:38AM

    I visited the Copper Canyon about 4 years ago and spent an afternoon with the Tarahumara while there. They are an amazing people! I will look for his book, Born to Run".

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HWNHMMBRD 4/1/2012 11:02PM

    I saw the article about his death, and I was saddened that some one who gave so much of himself is gone. May his spirit live on. emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/1/2012 11:02:34 PM

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More results from going low-carb - Sleep

Sunday, April 01, 2012

As I experiment with eating low-carb, primal and wheat-free I'm discovering more and more connections.
In October of last year, after running a very good but very difficult trail half-marathon I started wondering about what I could do to improve both my cardiovascular fitness and running speed and my body composition (fat vs. muscle). At this point I knew that both were likely affected by hypothyroidism, primarily TSH levels that had been somewhere between 7 and 12 for years, that were due at least in part to having had part of my thyroid removed. I had other symptoms that are typical of mild hypothyroidism, including lack of energy in the afternoon, low body temperature (below 97) in the morning and frequent sleeplessness at night. Occasionally I also noticed what seemed like a reduced ability to deal with high stress levels, possibly due to sleep deprivation.
I already ate what I thought of as a thyroid-friendly diet, avoiding PUFA's (polyunsaturated fatty acids) and avoiding soy, raw cruciferous vegetables (cabbages, broccoli) and peanuts. This brought my T3 and T4 levels in the normal range and lowered my TSH to about 6 or 7.
I had already eliminated most sugar from my diet and all grain I ate was whole-grain. My weight has been in the normal range (BMI around 25) for many years now but I knew that I still qualified as "skinny fat", with a fairly low percentage of muscle and a fairly high percentage of belly fat for my size and weight in spite of exercising almost daily and consistently for 1-2 hours/day at low to moderate intensity.
So in October I decided to get a little more systematic in trying to improve my fitness and health. I started running according to the Maffetone method which recommends capping one's heart rate at about 180-age during all runs for at least several months to build a strong aerobic base and avoiding any speed workouts or other anaerobic workouts incl. strength training. For me this would have corresponded to about 70-75 % of maxium heart rate using the 220-age method.
The Maffetone method also includes nutrition recommendations and life style recommendations which I partly followed. I had some improvement in my running over several months and again assumed that the slowness of my progress was due primarily to thyroid issues. Overall I felt that I was still making progress both in my running and general well-being.
At the beginning of the year my husband decided to try gluten-free eating to improve his own health and we both did a fair amount of reading about gluten and grain. About a month later, after reading "Wheat Belly" I decided to go wheat-free. I noticed an increase in energy in the afternoon and evenings and better sleep at night within about a week. After reading Gary Taubes' book "Why we get fat" I decided about two weeks later (around the mid-February) to try to go low-carb by eliminating almost all grain, beans and sugar and limiting fruit to the less sweet varieties for a while. The "almost-all" is because I decided that there is no reason to worry about either small amounts of grain or sugar when they are served at social functions or when they are the only food available. My hope was to reduce body fat without paying much attention to calories eaten or to weight. It took about 2-3 weeks to lose an inch of belly fat which was a great start.
I have since experimented a little to see what happens if I eat some sugar but no grains and found that as my carbs increase to more than about 100grams/day my weight starts climbing up a little but all the other benefits of eating low-carb remained, especially not getting any food cravings and having higher energy levels.
So yesterday I pushed the envelope a little to see what would happen. In the early evening I ate a whole gluten-free brownie that was made with rice flour, butter and lots of sugar and must have had about 500 calories at least. I was expecting to get hungry a few hours later, which did not happen, probably because the brownie also contained a lot of fat in the form of butter.
But for the first time in quite a few weeks I woke up at 3 am and could not go back to sleep. After over an hour of lying awake I got up and decided to start writing this blog ( accompanied by a large cup of coffee)
I suspect eating brownies or other similarly high-sugar foods, even gluten-free, will be VERY rare from now on. Since I don't crave sugar or carbs any more this is going to be very easy.
Most of the sugar I get will come from raw whole milk products (lactose) and some fresh fruit and the total is still not going to be very much.
I will also continue running using the Maffetone method except I will start adding a little strength training back into the mix. I'm looking forward to seeing how this will go while eating low-carb.

Tomorrow I will report on the book by Mark Sisson "The Primal Blueprint".

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATTERD707 7/26/2012 10:03AM

    I had a very sleepless night, which is strange for me. The only thing I could think of is that I had a big soy smoothie for dinner. I don't typically do this, but was on the run and needed something relatively healthy (just soy milk and fruit).

I rarely eat soy, but whenever I do, I wonder whether I have a soy alergy. My stomach was upset all night and I laid in bed unable to sleep (which is extremely rare for me).

Oh, and I did have a slide of home made wheat bread an hour before bed too (about 8pm). Maybe I have a wheat intolerance too.

Any advice would be appreciated.

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ARLENE_MOVES 4/1/2012 5:56PM

    Such an interesting blog and the comments - wow! I am learning so much between reading WheatBelly for the second time and all the great blogs on the WB team. Thanks!

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GRACEMCDOG 4/1/2012 5:31PM

    I'm still sitting here stunned at your TSH levels. How on earth do you have the energy to do all that exercising? If my TSH is above 4 I can barely move at all.

I've started reading a blog that I'm finding very interesting, though I'm not at all sure yet that I would be willing to follow this neurosurgeon's path, there is certainly a lot to think about in the information regarding circadian rhythms. There is a great deal of information and I've barely scratched the surface, but you might find something helpful. The doctor is Jack Kruse. Have you read any of his material? Curious to know what you thought, if so. http://jackkruse.com/ Website is called 'Living an Optimized Life'. Someone (I'm sorry I don't recall who) posted a link to it from the WB team. I'm kind of fascinated by the CT (cold thermogenisis) but I need to read more to understand the process. I often use cold/ice to address swelling/inflammation but he takes it way beyond that.

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HOUNDLOVER1 4/1/2012 1:30PM

    I think there are a couple of different possibilities. It could be sugar or it could be any other carbohydrate. Any carbs will increase insulin production and affect hormones that regulate sleep. Stress is brought on by the same hormones.

Comment edited on: 4/1/2012 1:32:16 PM

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    So in this case it's clearly the sugar.

I'm not as diligent in studying cause and effect for myself.
All I know is that I cannot have caffeine after 4:00 pm or I won't sleep.
I have not really studied and food connections.
What I have discovered, however, is that my overall stress level (especially worrying) greatly affects my sleep quality. My approach is to balance this through exercise.
I have great success with yoga.

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GOPINTOS 4/1/2012 11:28AM

    Enjoyed reading. Thanks for sharing!

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LILY_SPARK 4/1/2012 10:29AM

    This is really interesting!

Amongst all the stuff my family has, my mother had hypo/ Graves and had her thyroid irradiated twice. While she tested negative for Celiac, I *am* Celiac (and have always been normal for thyroid, although her sister is hypo and medicated off and on for it).

I have multiple autoimmune diseases (congenital lupus being one) but still use soy (organic milk) daily to "treat" my hormone problem (it's that or the pill, which doesn't work as well as 3C of soy milk a day). My family members (female) have bled to death and / or had radical hysterectomies in their 20s--it's not an annoyance, it's a real problem. I was anemic for years (ate high iron foods and took RX supplements) but that hasn't been a problem since doing the soy.

Unlike you, my sleep (been an insomniac since baby, ask my parents--I didn't cry, I just "never slept") is NOT affected (that I can tell) by anything but gluten (since I learned that I'm Celiac and being true-Celiac, means I have NO ability to process it).

I'm sure further tweaking (as you clearly do) will find other things but I'm so happy to find this diagnosis a couple months ago. I'm happy that you're finding greater relief and energy, too!

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TAMPATINK67 4/1/2012 9:15AM

    As always - great insights on how your body is responding to different foods and exercises! Thanks for continuing to share the journey and information!

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PAPAMIKIE 4/1/2012 9:09AM

    Gramie is Type1 Diabities and has been exploring low carb diet with very good success. Daughter has ciliac and has remarkable improvements when she stays on her low carb wheat free diet.

I work on the idea of a threashold of stress, this suggests that various things are stressors and if our combined "Stress Load" goes over that threshold then you get into distress. Making a change that brings you below that level will help correct things. Therefore, you can change one or several stressor to get back to a "Safe" level, and therefore you can see individual changes like food, or exercise, etc make improvements. A balanced apporach of reducing several stressor to reduce the overall load is still the best approach. however, for individual certain systems may be more important.

Diabieties and thyroid issue are both pressent in several memebers of my wife`s family

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