Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Adventures in Paleo 2
Yesterday marked the first week down in my Strict Paleo+Intermittent Fasting Experiment. In honor of the occasion, I fasted for 24 hours. I was 16 hours into the fast yesterday when I was writing, with the full intention to go a full 24 hours. I have gone this long without eating before, but never intentionally or for reasons under my own control. The longest I can remember ever going without eating was in SERE School, but that was to simulate survival in the winter after being shot down over hostile territory. THAT was the hungriest I have ever been. Yesterday was nothing. I had notions of going longer, but once I smelled the chicken roasting in the oven stuffed with mirepoix, that notion went away pretty quickly. Real hunger is contemplating chasing down a snowshoe hair in three feet of snow because it's the first edible thing you have seen in days. Real Hunger is picking carrot and celery pieces out of the snow, and boiling more snow with some pine needles -- just to pretend you can get some nutrients out of it, and have a hot meal. Skipping Breakfast and Lunch is not hungry.
I have noticed some things about this fasted state that are totally different than I was expecting. The mental clarity during a fast is amazing. It actually seems like my vision is clearer. It may have been the increased blood flow from the Ball-Buster of a workout, but I couldn't say. I have noticed at about 14 hours I feel cold, and definitely colder in the hands and feet. I have been drinking twice as much water as normal to keep the hunger pains away. I will cut up a lemon in the afternoon, and put it in my water bottle. It actually makes me drink more, believe it or not. You wouldn't think sugar free watered down lemonade would be all that good, but I like it. I have been troubled with some bad heartburn during fasts previously, but I think the small rations of Dark Chocolate and Lemon help. I also have to drink decent coffee or I burn up, so I have been drinking Mello Joy, which I can't get at home. Louisiana has some really good perks if applied correctly. I have noticed the workouts do NOT suffer. I haven't gone on a distance run fasted yet due to heartburn issues, but I plan on hitting that later this week. I am recovering faster than ever, and still getting things done. I have been getting very creative with a pair of 5gal. water jugs. On the negative side, I have had to deal with what some in the more holistic sections of the health industry would categorize as "Cleansing Movements," which I have been correlating to higher quantities of H2O in my system combined with 64oz of black coffee on an entirely empty stomach, but it has been unpredictable. Sometimes it's after eating, sometimes it's after drinking. I think it may be a pressure relief mechanism or something. I don't know.
The Biggest complaint I have had throughout the fasting thing is not in the fast itself, but in the days I am NOT fasting. On the days I eat the standard three squares, and have a green light to eat whatever I want within the constraints of Paleo, I feel like crap! I am foggy, and sleepy. I have the yawns all day. I don't get it. Is this reverse carb flu? I have maintained a fairly low-carb approach to everything the first week, and have definitely not upped my carb intake at all. I just don't get it? Why would the refeed days be foggier than the fasting days? I woke up today not feeling terribly awful, wasn't groggy, contemplated skipping breakfast, but decided it better to eat because I only had one real meal yesterday. (I ended my fast at 8 PM and went to bed at 11) I had my three squares today. I snuck in a little fruit. I made a killer braised country style ribs with baby carrots that was so filling I haven't been hungry since 5pm, but I have been in a funk all day. I couldn't "get right" all day. I planned a 5k Run, but could never get the motivation to go. My work environment was bothering me more than normal. I couldn't seem to get the energy to do anything. AND I have had a small annoying headache all day. The same thing happened after my last non-fast.
I just don't get it. Now don't get me wrong. I thought about the possibility of over training, and not having a good ammount of (x) Nutrient, but that is just not the case. I am not sore at all. I have been working out LESS than normal due to the fasting, and I am still getting plenty of vegetables. I am eating so many vegetables, in fact, that i have had to go the store to replenish my supply three times now. I have killed 3 Bags of carrots in 10 days. I should be developing an orange tan and shitting carotene bricks! It just doesn't logically add up.
So on to the results so far. I am visibly smaller. My Dickies, which are terribly honest to a waist size, and usually tight, fit perfectly right now. I can feel my belly fat melting away as I am regaining the leanness of my youth. The stubborn fat that refuses to die seems to have finally found it's kryptonite. I can put up with the occasional bouts of explosive espresso shots out of my nether regions to get results. At least it isn't as painful as a bodybuilder's supplement rejection. Protein shakes aren't in my version of Paleo.
**I just remembered. I ran out of my Green&Black's chocolate today, so I went back to my old stand-by Lindt's Lindor truffles 60% Dark. Unfortunately I didn't think about it, but the ganache on the inside of these beautiful, delectable, amazingly silky smooth explosions of chocolate on your tongue creations have dairy in them. Challenge FAIL. I could not make it two weeks. I am not changing the game plan from here on out, however. The results are speaking for themselves. It is a matter of principle when you are trying to challenge yourself and the rules are broken, you fail. Did the walls come crashing down on my head? Did the world stop on it's axis and change polarity? no. And I will keep going as if they do not have dairy in them. Because as was stated in an earlier post, There are more benefits than negatives in these amazing little things.