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Getting Off the White Stuff

Thursday, April 11, 2013

(A lot of links in this one - you may want to visit my blog clone on WordPress for all of them: wp.me/p1N36Q-4I )

Dr. Phil Maffetone, I really wish there was an "About" section of your blog or somewhere I could easily find out more about you. Right now, I don't even know what you are a doctor of. Even Google can't tell me, although I see that you are internationally recognized as a fitness and health expert. So I'll give you a shot.

Someone recommended his blog to me - he writes about running and carbs, so naturally I'm a fan. And apparently he plays guitar too. What's not to like? (Ok, some of his blog entries could use a quick edit, but I won't judge. I'm not completely innocent of a few typos and run-on sentences myself).

As I restart a new attempt at going 14 days binge and wheat free, I found this supporting article regarding Dr. Maffetone's two week test, developed in order to help carbohydrate addicts quit cold turkey. What's interesting is that he started with a ten day test - the same length of time that my longest streak to date has been - and here's what he found:

"At first, this new test period I devised lasted 10 days—the same period of time used in one of the studies I had reviewed. But the first few patients I used this new approach on needed more time off carbohydrates to fully appreciate the positive effects."

Ok. So although I start feeling pretty good after only a few days, as noted by my first experience passing up a cupcake, it will take me 14 days to really internalize all of the good vibes being wheat free can give me. And maybe turning down those cookies will be a lot easier after that.

I read on to the next blog about sugar addiction and learned the answer to why I don't binge on broccoli. He poses that sugar addiction may be the cause of binge eating. Before beginning this wheat free experiment, I had actually been looking for ways to reduce the amount of sugar I was consuming - like leaving it out of my coffee, or reducing it in baked good recipes and/or replacing with a sugar substitute. (I use Splenda for now, but may make the switch to stevia in the near future. I'd feel a little better about using something more natural). I'm assuming he's talking about added sugars here - not fruit. I'm hoping to retrain my sweet tooth to go after berries and citrus.

He has a lot to say about barefoot running. When I first had knee trouble a year and a half ago, I went out and bought a pair of Vibram Fivefingers and a copy of the book Born to Run:

The book was fantastic, but the shoes made me miserable. They cut into my heels and left me in extreme calf pain after each one mile session. I ended up going back to a stability shoe and enrolled in personal training to build leg strength. Ran two half marathons with no knee problems, so I never really thought about barefoot running again. With a lot of races to prep for this year, I'm not sure now is the time to break the Vibrams out, but Dr. Maffetone's interview with the book's author and barefoot marathoner Chris McDougall was inspiring. If my knee is still bothering me after my treadmill run today, I might need to think about this some more.
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