Eat Sleep and Play Primally

PRIMALOCITY: Eat Sleep Live and Party Primally

Eat Sleep Live and Party Primally
Okay, once again I’ve been suckered into doing something I would not have otherwise chosen to do on my own or even had thought about doing.  Life is like that, I guess.  One of the keys to living a full healthy and fun life is to keep your mind open to new thoughts and ideas.  Some people can live there lives, trudging along in their routine, day in and day out, never opening their eyes to the possibilities for a more fulfilling, healthier and happier life. Well, my eyes have recently been opened to living my life according to the Primal Blueprint.
I was first introduced to the “primal” lifestyle by my partner.  Looking at him you would never think anything other than, “wow, he looks very fit, healthy and strong”. However, despite an active lifestyle ( he works out regularly, bikes and loves to hike) and eating a relatively healthy diet including lots of protein, “healthy” grains (whole grain breads and pastas, brown rice) vegetables and fruits, dairy and eggs, in the last year, he was diagnosed with borderline high blood pressure and high cholesterol.  Of course, his doctor prescribed medication to both lower his blood pressure and cholesterol levels.  He promptly filled the prescriptions despite his general dislike for taking any kind of medicine.  Who could blame him, conventional wisdom has told us that this will make him live longer and feel better.  The problem was that he wasn’t seeing any significant changes in his blood pressure, but more importantly he was feeling less strong and more tired.  He started doing research and came across Mark Sisson’s website, which advocated living life primally.  This meant completely changing his diet and lifestyle to more closely mirror the way our early ancestors ate, worked, slept and played.  Well he decided that it made good sense and why not give it a try. 
He didn’t really tell me about his new “primal” lifestyle, most likely because he knew I would be resistant to the idea. You see, I love food, in particular carbs.  When I say “carbs” I mean bread, pasta, potatoes, chips, cakes, and cookies.  I  couldn’t (and still have trouble) imagining a life without “carbs”.  I also love to cook, and am the primary meal preparer in the family.  My passion for food and cooking typically lead to delicious, beautiful meals.  I like being creative with food, and I especially like seeing my partner enjoy the dishes I create.  These meals always included some kind of bread, starch, pasta, rice or potato.  When my partner made this change to eating and living primally (did I already mention he did not tell me about this change) he stopped eating the carbs that were included on the plate. I felt bad.  I thought to myself “whats wrong”?  It must not taste good.  How did I mess this up?  When I finally questioned him he fessed up to this new plan and I was somewhat pissed.  I was mad that it wasn’t something he discussed with me, but I think mostly, I was being selfish.  I just was not ready to give up all those things I loved, and didn’t really see any reason too.  I thought that I had become fairly adept at including these carbs in our meals in more healthier ways: using whole grains, switching from white rice to brown rice, etc. 
Then after some discussion and a better understanding of why my partner felt this change to eating and living primally was so important, I started doing some research on my own.  The next day, Mark Sisson’s book, The Primal Blueprint came in the mail.  I snagged the book while my partner was at work and read it in a day.
Everything in the book made perfect sense to me, but I was still resistant.  I’m relatively healthy and have never had any problems with blood pressure or cholesterol.  Up until about 12 years ago, I was obese, weighing in at about 325 pounds. After a series of events I decided I was simply on the path to horrible illness and dieing before my time.  So I made all kinds of changes in my life.  I went on a “diet” and started working out.  Within a years time I had lost  125 pounds (I limited my calories to between 1500 and 1800 calories per day, and eating less than 20 grams of fat a day).  I was working out every day.  I started running and cycling, eventually completing numerous biathlon’s, triathlons and marathons.  In this process I continued to lose weight and had trouble eating enough to keep on weight. I started adding things back into my diet, including more carbs like bread, rice, pasta and chips.  More recently, after a series of life events and constant injuries, I slowed down a bit and put on some weight.  While I did not get fat, I did not put on good weight.  It wasn’t muscle and therefore, it just had to be fat.  While I needed to gain some weight, it should have been in the form of  lean body mass.   I had already started on this course of leaning up, and putting on muscle by doing the P90X workout plan (again not my idea, but rather my partner’s idea).  I really hated it at first, but trudged on and started seeing significant gains.  While I was putting on muscle, I didn’t seem to be leaning up as I thought I should.  After reading The Primal Blueprint, I think I figured out why.  It was the way I was eating.  My body was using the significant amount of carbs that I was eating for energy to complete the vigorous workouts, instead of using my fat.  I was still hesitant.  I didn’t want to give up the “reward” that carbs represented to me for working out so hard.  But there were other compelling reasons for purging these harmful carbs from my diet, that made too much sense to me.
I’ve always been the type, however, to say “I’ll try anything twice”.  What do I mean by that?  Well Ive found that most new experiences can be daunting and uncomfortable. You may already start out with some trepidation or doubt.  Beginning anything new with a negative state of mind can make the first experience not truly as exciting or enjoyable as it could have been.  That is human nature I guess.  However, if you try it again, you already know what to expect, you can let go of the fear of unknowing, and hopefully make a decision if this new experience is right for you.
It really boils down to a couple of key principles: 1) too much body fat is bad; and 2) too much insulin is bad.  These principles standing alone are important, but together, they will give me and you the key to a stronger and healthier body.  Lets face it, excess body fat isn’t pretty, but more importantly it is linked to almost every known major health issue and disease plaguing our society.  Science has proven that those who create less insulin live longer healthier lives. By changing our diet, becoming leaner and decreasing the amount of insulin created in our bodies, we will  be stronger, healthier, and, we  will have more fun in life.
I’m no scientist and it is not the purpose of this blog to convince you that the science behind living and eating primal is for you, for that I would highly recommend that you visit Mark Sisson’s website,, or read his book, The Primal Blueprint. 
While I have just embarked on this new life strategy, I’ve been very verbal about it.  Most of my friends reactions have been the same.  Why would you want to do that?  How are you going to have enough energy to keep up?. How in the hell are You going to give up pasta, bread and rice?.  At first I didn’t have a really good answer.  However, after doing a lot of research (including reading mark Sisson’s Primal blueprint) and soul searching, I decided it was better to ask why wouldn’t I do this.  The answer is complicated in theory but simple in reality.  I want to be healthier, live longer, be leaner, be stronger, sleep better and have more fun living life. 
So, with this frame of mind I’ve now embarked on a course of trying to live, eat, sleep and play primally.  In simple terms that means that I will eat in a way I’ve never eaten before.  I will workout in a way I’ve never worked out before before.  I will play more and hopefully sleep better. Sounds easy? Wrong!.  Well, nothing in life worth doing is ever easy, but it will be worth it.  So here I am. starting my primal journey.  The first couple of weeks have been hard, but not as I hard as i thought.  I already feel better physically, have lost several pounds and am sleeping better.   The fact  still remains that I love food and I love working out.  I need to make this change exciting, continuing to be both creative in the kitchen and in my exercise regime.  This blog is going to help me, and you live primally in a way that is simply not boring. This means sharing exciting recipe and food choices, great workout ideas and plans, and tips for fun and getting more our of life and our beautiful world.
With that said, I pledge the following:
Eating:  I will eat more vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts and good fats.  I will ignore conventional wisdom regarding carbohydrates.  I will no longer make grains, cereals, pasta, bread, rice, chips  or other processed and toxic foods the bulk of my diet.  In fact, I will try my best to no longer eat these types of food again.  On this note I must confess I will probably fail but that’s okay with me.  Even if I cut these items out of my diet 80% of the time, I will be healthier, happier, leaner and stronger.
Exercising: I will run and bike slower.  I will run fast and work hard once in awhile, but not for very long.  I will lift heavy things.  I will likely never go back to running marathons, dong century bike rides as fast as I can, or limiting my workouts to a few activities like I did before. As a result, I will be healthier, happier, leaner and stronger.
Playing:  I will play more.  I will do more things that I enjoy.  I will see friends more.  I will not stress about that TV show I missed.  In fact, I’ll probably watch less TV, play with my iphone less, and surf the web less.  As a result, I will be healthier, happier, leaner and stronger.
Sleeping:  I will sleep more regularly and soundly.  I will endeavor to get on a routine sleep pattern.  I may take a nap once in awhile. I will not deprive myself of sleep because my schedule is to hectic.  As a result, I will be healthier, happier, leaner and stronger.
 I already feel better, just after a couple of weeks with these new changes.  don’t get me wrong, I still crave a sandwich, pizza, potatoes, pasta and rice. But, because I love eating and cooking, I have already created lots of good foods, substituting things for the bad “carbs” that, quite astonishingly have satiated my constant need for these bad carbs.  In the days, weeks and months ahead, i will share these ideas, recipes, and substitutes with you.  I hope you take the journey with me.  If you are already on this journey, i hope that I can impart some good ideas for healthy and satisfying meals to you.  Of course, I hope that others share their ideas with me as well.
Live life primally, but more importantly, live life healthier, happier and stronger!
Wednesday, June 9th, 2010 Uncategorized

5 Comments to PRIMALOCITY: Eat Sleep Live and Party Primally

June 9, 2010

you rock steven this is so cool so glad i primal love you!!

June 9, 2010

I love this!!!!!! Good for you- now I think you guys need to come visit us!!!! We could have yummy salad and chat it up, and talk about awesome new life paths…..I’m all for it-
One piece of advice that you didn’t ask for: Don’t say “try”, just make a commitment to something you can keep, that way you aren’t letting yourself down…i.e:”I will eat no more than 20% carbs in my diet”.

No trying, No failing, Just doing.

Dustin Bopp
June 10, 2010

Perfect advice Yoda, er, uh, Dionna!

Steve Patterson
June 10, 2010

I like the pledge. My personal carb intake is now very low. I eat so many more veggies — including raw veggies. Added to my blog roll and to my RSS reader.

June 11, 2010

Steve _ I have made similar lifestyle and diet changes for other reasons and you won’t believe the difference over time. I eat a minimum of nice servings of fruits and veggies daily — with six of them being very specific and have eliminated so much else. I feel much more solid and healthier than ever (and I thought I already was healthy). Don’t worry about missing the carbs, some day they really won’t taste that great to you. This truth became more than evident when I had a banana that was almost “too sweet” the other day (I can’t imagine what a brownie might taste like then). I love your four part pledge. I may “borrow this into my world” 🙂

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