Paleo diet – how I got taller without putting on my Loubies!

Paleo diet foodlist

When 2012 began, I decided it was time to lose some weight, so I started researching on diets and decided that the Paleo diet was going to be my new best friend. As I have written in an earlier post it was a little tough the first few days without the starchy carbs but it was only the first week and it has been easy since then.

In January I skipped alcohol and I had no cheat days. I worked out 5-6 times a week for couple of hours every time (still do) with different cardio routines (thread mill, elliptical machine, stair climber and rowing machine) and every other day strength (kettlebells and crosstraining) and weightlifting with dumbbells. When we hit February I loosened up and allowed myself to have a few glasses of red and some cheese during the weekends but otherwise I have kept to the diet and the workouts.

After the first two weeks, I was a little disappointed because even though I felt a change in my body and muscle mass, the weight count didn’t move as fast as I wanted. So after one and a half week, I decided to drop my morning routine with the weight watching and stop focusing on the depressing numbers.

When I started I was a really bad runner – only running 5 km in 40 minutes and afterwards I was about as blue as a smurf and sounded like a steam locomotive. My spaghetti arms could lift about 2 x 6 kilos in shoulderpress when using the dumbbells, 10 pushups, barely 30 sec of plank and only 2 x 4 kilos in breast/flyes.

Now six and a half week later, I feel a huge difference in my workouts. I run 10 kilometers in app. an hour. I do 2 x 10 kilos in shoulderpress, 46 pushups, 3,5 minutes plank with leg lift and 2 x 9 kilos in flyes!

Today I broke my record in running – 10 kilometers in 54. 32 – whoop whoop!!! So my curiosity won me over and I asked the instructor at FitnessWorld to measure my weight and BMI. Holy mother camel – I have lost 6,5 kilos and my BMI has gone from 26 to 22!! I was so surprised and extremely happy. Actually I thought I was as happy as I could be until the instructor, whom I otherwise never talk to, asked me whether I was training to be in a competition because he had noticed ‘a huge difference’ (as he said it) and he was impressed about my workout routines.  I don’t know if he said it just to be nice – but it really made my day and I felt like the five inches taller I’ve always wanted to be, when I left the gym.

Maybe you think that the weightloss has been due to the workouts but I’m pretty confident that I would have lost a lot more weight if I hadn’t been working out, as the increase in muscle mass weigh a lot more than the fat I was carrying around. But of course my newly achieved strength is definitely due to the workouts.

I’m still losing weight, getting stronger and feel energetic, so I’m definitely sticking to my friend the Paleo and will continue to do my workouts. But I will also continue my cheating with wine and cheese in the weekends, and if I go to have dinner at my friends I won’t require special treatments. No need to be a fanatic – it is all about finding the right balance. But if you need to lose some weight I can surely recommend the Paleo diet. And for the ladies, this will be the recipe to feel taller and more fabulous without putting on your Loubies!!

If you want to know more about the Paleo Diet there are lots of information on the web without you having to buy the book and I can recommend a blog here at wordpress called Paleo Works. It has tons of information about Paleo lifestyle. So what are you waiting for?! I promise you – you will feel fabulous, I know I do!
Have an awesome day!

Well, that’s just nuts!

Homemade energy bars

Fabulous homemade energy snack

For the past 5 weeks I have been on the Paleo Diet aka cave man (in this case woman) nutrition. Basically, it means that you eat like our ancestors meaning no processed food, no dairy, no starchy carbs but lean protein, healthy fat, veggies, fruit and nuts. The first week without starchy carbs was the hardest but the good thing about this diet is that you eat a lot of protein which keeps you full for a longer period of time and you don’t feel starved. Although, I miss my rye bread with cheese in the morning I have to admit that I feel fabulous and there is no doubt that my stomach feels much better, I’m losing weight and I feel more energetic! My plan is to continue the diet and make it my new lifestyle. But I’m too much a sucker for wine, food and delicacies and no way, I’m ever going to turn into a fanatic – so, my idea is to follow the diet through the week but in the weekends it is okay to go and have a fabulous dinner or…and a piece of chocolate.

Anyways, normally I don’t have cravings for sweets but without any starch my sweet cravings began. I also think it is a bit difficult if I’m away from home, or one day the lunch at work doesn’t fit into the diet. I know a lot of people have beef jerky, chicken pieces or a can of tuna with them when they go out but I’m not really that fond of meat, fish or poultry in my Louis. So, I began to search the internet for homemade energy bars but a lot of the recipes contained peanuts, whey protein and oatmeal and in my opinion way too much unnecessary and unhealthy fat. So, I tried out a few different recipes myself and the best recipe is a combo of several recipes.

Homemade energy bars:

1 cup of almond flour
1 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup of almonds
½ cup of brazil nuts
½ cup of raw cashews
2 tbsp Raw cacao nibs
½ cup dried fruit (depending on which kind of fruit, chop them up)
½ cup Coconut oil
½ cup of coconut milk (if possible, leave some of the coconut water out)
2-3 tbsp honey
½ tsp vanilla extract

Do not use salted, roasted or any other kind of processed nuts and be aware that this recipe is not based on exact measures as the size of nuts and dried fruit may vary. So be careful with the wet ingredients – it can be either more or less!

Put all of the whole nuts and the shredded coconut into a baking pan and lightly roast the nut mix in the oven. When the shredded coconut is light brown it is done. When the nuts are roasted, pop them into the blender to make a chunky mixture. Melt the wet ingredients in the microwave and add the almond flour, raw cacao nibs, vanilla extract and dried fruit. (Almond flour is quite expensive and you can easily do it yourself. Put the whole almonds in the blender or a grinder and swoosh, you’ve got almond flour!)

The mixture should be sticky, heavy and in no way fluently! Put the mixture into a Tupperware or any other square container, just make sure that the lit is airtight. Press the mixture into the box so it is flattened out. Put in the fridge and leave for at least a couple of hours. Afterwards you cut the mixture into bite size, bar size or any other size and shape you’d like!! No matter what shape or size, they are fabulous!!

Eat them as they are after your workout, on the go or as a healthy snack or if you are having guest for dinner and you need sweets for the coffee and avec, you can dip it in melted chocolate and I bet your guest will think it is a little piece of heaven…unless they are allergic to nuts. In that case forget the two previous lines. Remember this is not a snack that you should eat every day or several times a day. It is a treat and should not be eaten regularly. The energy bars contains healthy fat, healthy carbs and even though they are good calories, they are still calories. So treat them as a treat when you deserve a little extra.

Happy energy and happy thoughts! 🙂