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In Your Own Words…quotes from the Fall 2011 Nutrition Challenge!

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Today is Day 30! Last day of the challenge. That wasn’t so bad, now was it? In fact, it was kinda good. Kinda really good.

Here are some of your quotes from throughout the challenge. Whenever you’re having a bad food day, or you realized that you’ve strayed a little too far from the real-food diet, come back here and read this post to remind yourself of how great you feel when you are eating real foods.

With pride and great hopes fore the future, we say congratulations and good luck! Go ahead, eat or drink something tomorrow that you’ve missed throughout the challenge. Then try to stay as close to 100% real foods as possible. Your body will thank you.

“This time I wanted to really make a lifestyle change. I wanted to come out the other side significantly different in how I viewed food and my ability to know what is good for me and make those choices regularly. And, with only a week left, I am pleased to say that it HAS become a way of life. I learned more this time (thanks to all your posts and recipes and Q and A!), and I feel equipped to face the highly processed culture out there with a lot more self control and, frankly, joy! Life is not about all the things we avoid, but all the things we enjoy. And man oh man, paleo style food is straight up enjoyable.”

“My response to “Oh, you’re on that low carb Atkins thing” is “No, I’m on that ‘Eat Only What’s Good For You’ thing.”

“I did ok with eating before but no sugar or dairy has been different. Headaches are gone and I am feeling less tired. I did notice I took an apple in my lunch today and it tasted soooooo good! Guess that would be the sweet tooth being replaced with different tastes! My 30 days are up when I am going to my friends wedding…I was really looking forward to eating and drinking whatever but I must say…I am having less of a desire to “ruin” what I have already done, even when the 30 days is up.”

“This challenge has really opened my eyes to how not Paleo I was eating over the last 6 months which probably contributed to my freak out of gaining weight. I was not understanding why I was gaining weight but when I really look back at my diet I cheated everyday and those cheats add up.”

“This challenge has really straight up just gotten me to the point where I am ready to embrace this lifestyle on a more full-time basis.”

“Since I can remember I’ve always had stomach/digestive issues since college and it has progressively gotten worse through the years. I’ve been to Dr.s and specialists who have told me that I have IBS and that I need to figure out what foods are causing my symptoms – I’ve even been given medicine to help and that didn’t work. So the last few years I”ve self diagnosed myself as lactose intolerant, I know that eating rice makes me bloated and few other things. But b/c i love all the bad stuff, I chose to deal with the pain convincing myself I’m just screwed for life b/c no one really knows what’s actually wrong.

We are on day 17 of the challenge and I have had no issues, no IBS symptoms or bloating, and my body is functioning as normal as can be. I feel great! I don’t worry anymore about how bad I will feel after every meal because I don’t have any problems anymore!!!!! The 30 day challenge was a wake up call, and made me realize that what I was putting in my body was negatively affecting my life. “

“Although I have been eating mostly paleo since January, it wasn’t until this challenge that I have adopted the concept cooking large quantities of meat in a crock pot to last me through the week. It has saved me so much time in food preparation during the week and [so far] the experiments have been tasty and successful.”

“Anyway last time I did the diet I failed from the drinking part. I couldnt do it for 30 days. But now I’m much more comfortable going to a bar and asking for a club soda with a ton of limes. As long as I have something to sip on it didn’t really phase me to much. I also think its a maturity thing as well. You grow up and realize its OK to not drink even though everyone else is.”

“Before this challenge I was cold ALL THE TIME. I used to sit at my desk and just freeze I would drink loads of hot water and my nails would still be blue from cold. That’s totally vanished in the last few weeks. Even my husband has noticed, saying that my nose and cheeks aren’t cold to the touch.”

“So because we had a wedding to go to my husband and I started early. Today is our last day (although I feel fabulous and will continue to eat this way…. plus a little liquor). Survey says….30 days Paleo…..minus 14 lbs. I am pretty freakin’ proud of myself. I did not enter to win but just felt like I wanted to share with people who know that this was a super healthy way to lose…I have been met with lots of “you are looking great but are you sure cutting all that out is healthy” comments! Keep up the great work everyone!!! It does pay off!”

“Top 11 things I thought would never happen and did during the challenge
1. I cooked.
2. I drink my coffee black
3. I gave up Splenda (yes I know that should have been gone years ago)
4. Mike ate the food I cooked
5. I went grocery shopping multiple times
6. I spend most of my day on Sunday looking at recipes
7. I didn’t cheat on the diet
8. I didnt drink
9. I now enjoy cooking
10. I now truly embrace Paleo as a lifetime way of eating.
11.Mike did the entire challenge didn’t cheat, didn’t drink, and lost mad weight!”

“I’ve definitely given up gluten for good and learned when I’m actually hungry versus when I’m just craving sugars/random foods (if extra breakfast/lunch/dinner is not appetizing, I’m not really hungry).”

“I am now feeling like it’s a lifestyle change rather than a diet. Even when I’m craving bad foods, I know I won’t go near them because of how negatively my body reacts to them.”

I’ve cooked more in the last two weeks than I’ve cooked in my entire life. Need a vacation from this. Know of any Paleo cruises?”

“I have always been into cooking and good food so I started to change my diet slowly in preparation for the challenge and started reading all of the nutritional information that has been posted on the website. Oh boy what an eye opener! I was aware of some of the obvious stuff, but the toxic affect of gluten, the genetic modifications to food we eat and the long term affects of a wheat infused diet are really frightening. This experience is definitely a life changer for me. Not to say I will never cheat and eat ice cream or drink wine, but it will be with my eyes open and knowing that 90% of the time I am on the right track. One of the hardest things for me has been incorporating so much red meat into my diet. I am a big fish eater but now I am eating bacon – my dogs are thrilled – and all kinds of meat and I am feeling great! Some of the benefits for me are:
I am sleeping better than I have in years
I feel really rested when I wake up – but I still love my coffee
I have much more energy throughout the day
I am not hungry at night so I am not snacking after dinner
I am getting leaner and stronger – last night I increased my front squat weight by 50 lbs!
Actually I am never hungry anymore and I haven’t really been too full – except Sat night when all of the different food was so awesome!
My clothes are fitting better and I don’t feel so bloated
I also feel more clear headed and focused.”

I used to be plagued with headaches and migraines…usually they would start at 3 in the afternoon and last until after dinner time. They would be so bad i was sensitive to light, nauseous, would have to laydown in the dark and take pills to knock me out. Once I started changing my diet a year ago I started getting fewer headaches. I got a headache the first 2 days on the challenge but that’s it. Nothing since then. I know the headaches were related to my diet. My body is very sensitive to sugar, I get really bad highs and lows from it. My crashes usually were when I would get my headache and then I would feed my headache and so the cycle continued…this last year I’ve ended that cycle and I feel better. When I occasionally eat sugar I feel like I wake up with a slight hangover, groggy, sluggish etc. “

“The other thing I’ve noticed about eating this way, it’s a mood stabilizer for me. Usually the highs and lows that I got from eating sugar also affected my mood, I got angry, tired, depressed, giddy. Now I feel I don’t have as bad of mood swings.”

“Like many in my family, I have dealt with anxiety over the past several years and was even on anti-depressants for a while there. Even before I found crossfit, I was feeling relief through my attempts at better diet and exercise and weight loss.”

“This 30-day challenge (and crossfit workout) have definitely contributed to additional improvements. I’m way more relaxed, in the moment, calm, clear headed, confident. Anxiety was also a cause of my over eating. I’m no longer likely to hunt for snacks and eat just for the sake of eating. I’m finally breaking the vicious cycle!”

If that wasn’t enough, head on over to Kate vs Food ( Kate Eckert’s blog!)  or More Spiel (Steve’s blog)…they are great real-life resources, and include recipes, too!

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6 Responses to In Your Own Words…quotes from the Fall 2011 Nutrition Challenge!

  1. Jamie says:

    Since we eat about 90 percent paleo, I wasn’t sure how many changes Steve and I would see. Neither of us lost any weight, but I knocked off exactly a minute and Steve knocked off nearly a minute from our Garage times compared to 30 days ago. Very cool!

    Also I had my blood work done during the challenge and my good cholesterol is up nearly 20 points and the overall number is great. I’m going to flash those numbers when people tell me I eat too much meat. :D

    Thanks Alycia and Justin for making the challenge part of Aspire. I think it was very, very good for me.

  2. Steve says:

    Yeah, my mind got blown by that WOD today. I was kinda dragging from a cough/cold and we eat mostly primal anyway, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I remember Jamie and I saying to each other right before it started, “I just hope I don’t go *slower* than last time. *That* would be embarrassing.” Instead we each shaved about a minute off, and, for the first time, I feel like I could bump up to the Rx weight without, say, dying. Nice.

  3. Kate says:

    Aww thanks for the blog shout out!

    Jamie and Steve – that’s awesome :) especially for how clean you both ate prior to the challenge. Steve, I guess that means you have to give up your precious protein shakes :P

    THANK YOU Alycia and Justin for all you did for us during the challenge, and thanks to the rest of the challengers for the unconditional support and recipes! What a great experience…I can’t wait to do it again :)

  4. Cathy says:

    I second that Kate! Justin and Alycia, you were terrifically supportive through this challenge and I really appreciate all of the information you provided. Alycia, I am especially grateful for the assistance you gave me when my foot was stuck in the pull up band tonight! I’d probably still be hanging there if not for you.
    Kate and Steve – I really enjoyed your blogs. I got great information and just plain had a lot of fun reading them. Thanks to both of you also!

  5. Morten G says:

    Came here via whole9 (facebook):
    “One of the hardest things for me has been incorporating so much red meat into my diet. I am a big fish eater”
    I’ve never ever heard of anyone recommending replacing fish with red meat in a Paleo context (or any other context). I have heard the argument that bacon isn’t good because it is packed with preservatives (nitrite/nitrate) but I’ve never heard anything bad about fish. Other than that some people don’t like it.

  6. Alycia says:

    Hey Morten – we recommend that people eat the type of meats and veggies that they like, and try to incorporate some variety in there. So eating a ton of read meat isn’t necessary if that’s not your thing. We do advocate red meat over chicken because of chicken’s high Omega 6 content. Substituting fish for meat a few times a week would be fine with us! Red meat (grassfed) is packed with nutrients and it’s fat and bones are great for cooking with and making stocks. There are certain complete proteins only found in meat, which is why we do encourage people to eat it, but not any more than they want to.
    The verdict is out on bacon – there are reasons why it’s fine and reasons why it’s not. We joke about eating it a lot, but in reality we use it more as a garnish or an addition to a meal – not the main meat source.

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