Sunday, October 3, 2010

Awesome Primal weekend!

Well, it was just an amazing weekend with my husband...
We rented a cabin at a great NYS Park-Letchworth. I was only there one time many years ago for a day trip but I don't think I ever saw anything more than the northern portion, I completely missed all of the waterfalls, and something like 99% of the trails. When my husband and I first got married, we used to spend a lot of summer nights camping. We were both still in school and didn't have a lot of money, and we had a great tent. Over the years we have camped less and less. We actually haven't camped out in a few years now. My husband's Fishing Charter Business  eats up most of his free time in the summer. And honestly I have lost my drive to stay in a wet tent! But I really miss being outdoors for extended periods with my husband. Renting a cabin was a great way to get back into it. And very nice to reconnect now that Salmon fishing is done for the year. I mean, we are about to go right into hunting season, and we do spend a lot of time on the same property outdoors, but not together. This camping trip was was well worth the drive and cost to enjoy this particular State Park.  There is nothing better than sitting outdoors under the stars with someone you love, watching the campfire.
The next day, after making breakfast (which was organic free range eggs cooked in bacon grease, and pork from the Amish),  we hiked for several hours, winding up at a fine dining restaurant right in the park. The building looked like an old home, and the plaque stated that "William Pryor Letchworth" donated this house and estate, which included the 3 waterfalls, in 1907. God bless people like that who offer up such amazing property so thousands of people can enjoy it. I think there are other beautiful waterfall state parks that came into being the same way. Anyway at the restaurant I ordered the smoked Rainbow Trout, and it was delicious. Also I had the french onion soup without the bread. Which is probably borderline Primal but very tasty. We wound up coming home Saturday night instead of Sunday, we had to get the dog and also I still have the sinus thing going on and just wanted to be home. We were actually exhausted from all of the hiking and fresh air!
Today is Sunday, and we were out on Lake Ontario at Fairhaven State Park. We attempted to but did not catch any perch for dinner! Instead, we got really cold and windburned. We came home and ate some wild caught yellow fin tuna for dinner, which I got at  Wegmans. I think Wegmans is a great grocery store and I may have mentioned it before. They offer a large section of natural foods and the produce is mainly from local farms and local organic farms when possible. I have enjoyed watching the natural food section get bigger and bigger as more people catch on to the idea of eating more healthfully.
I thought I would have some time to do some heavy lifting today, but now I am not sure. Lugging wood off and on yesterday may need to count, at least it was functional lifting, and for such a great time.  We did spend time practicing target shooting with our bows, definitely primal stuff. I found out I am working opening day of bow season, which stinks. I wonder if my husband will get anything that day? I will have to keep you posted...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Getting better

Well, between the URI virus and the hormones, this has been a very rough week. Definitely not low carb some days, too much orange juice wasneeded for the desperate attempt to fend off the virulent virus I caught.  Very little energy to even do basic walking, what with the achey-ness of it all.  My poor dog has been so shortchanged. I could barely get off the couch on my days off and slept some nights for 12 hours straight! Friday at work I was able to fast until about 3:30, which gave me renewed hope. Today I ate better, and am starting to really turn the corner with the illness thing. I even made some of my own homemade coconut energy bars. And I took some venison steaks out of the freezer to do up some cooking tomorrow as well.

Tomorrow I am sure I will feel well enough to make a HUGE effort at exercise. I can't believe how much I missed it this week, but every time I attempted to go downstairs to the basement to work out, I felt so tired just from the effort of the stairs, not much got done. I moved some 15lb dumbells across the room and my arms ached. I wonder if I just succumbed to the flu for the first time in my life?

I am hoping to do 2-3 circuits of the Primal bodyweight workouts, followed by the sprint tomorrow.  Later before work I will walk the dog at least 45 minutes.  I have Monday off, so I will write again then. I hope to do some rollerblading (fun and slow movement) now that the leaves are starting to change at our great park "Onondaga Lake Park" with the miles and miles of paved trails good for blading.  I will try to include some good pictures, as it really is a very nice park and I enjoy when I take the time to go there.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Primal challenge 1/2 way point

Well, I was feeling so intensely challenged in the beginning, sure I would have no trouble sticking with the exercises and Primal eating. Yesterday was what feels like a disaster to me. I have had a lot of female hormone issues off and on in my life. Yesterday was definitely "on". Tuesdays and Fridays are the days I determined to do my intermittent fasting: no food until dinner. My intense hunger yesterday was demanding I eat by 10am. I started with almonds, had lunch at 11:30-pork roast and leftover roasted butternut squash with red onions. By 2 I felt like I was starving to death?!? I had blueberries, a banana, a small salad with grilled chicken and some crappy southwestern dressing (from the cafeteria at work) AND a small bag of Lays potato chips. WTF? Oh, and 3 of those small containers of cream cheese. Yikes. The carb content alone was too much, coupled with the poor fats intake. I felt icky. I hope I connect with a Grok Girl who has found a solution to the bossy female hormones that demand eating as a relief.

Later that evening I got some redemption by  having a nice piece of salmon and rainbow chard cooked in olive oil and garlic. When I got home, the homemade coconut bars were calling me from the freezer, so I had several of them also! I think overall I ate enough calories for the week! I did not even dare to count them up.

Today is a new day. It is 7am here, and I intend to take back the control. I will have heavy lifting, and also some moving slowly today. I have been having a difficult time balancing the movement part of Primal Blueprint Challenge as well. Last week I worked 3 12 hr shifts back to back. I was exhausted, and only got a few short walks in, and I even tried to walk up the 9 flights of stairs in the mornings to my job, just to have some movement beyond what I do at work (nursing). Then it seems like I try to pack the plan in the day or two I have off. I am not really sure how to do this any differently. Right now I just finished 2 more days of 12 hr shifts back to back. I have 2 days off now and am coming down with an upper respiratory virus, which my poor hubby has had for days. I want to be aggressive in catching up with the movement, but I  also don't want to get as sick as my hubby was. I generally don't because I take it easy and take echinacea and vit C and things, plus I think my immune system is generally stronger from all the exposure to germs at work. 

I intend also to pick up the fasting today, and maybe I will do Friday or Saturday as well. Friday may be too soon but Saturday will be very difficult, as I work 3-11 and will be home all day with the family. One day this week may be all I am capable of. Right now I still feel stuffed from yesterday, and I know if I do exercise that will decrease my appetite for a few hours. Then I will probably sleep this afternoon for a while, because of the whole virus thing.. Time will tell if this is a feasable plan for the day. Right now my Primal workout buddy Rocky, is begging for a long walk in the park. A good place to start, I think.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

day of Primal cooking

red onion and butternut squash
local organic rainbow chard

local wild caught salmon with herbs and garlic

So I also have baking a nice pork roast with fresh organic rosemary and garlic, which I did not photograph. I apologize that I have not really figured out how to add photos in a more ordered way, with paragraphs in between. Forgive me I am really not a blogger at heart! However I really enjoy writing about my experiences of following the primal challenge from Mark's Daily Apple.

I have to work the next 2 days 12hr shifts, which is common for me.  So whenever I get a chance, I have for the past few years made a large quantity of various foods to bring to work for lunches and dinners. Since going sugar and gluten free back in 2/08 it really has been a necessity because I can't count on the cafeteria to have much beyond a salad and maybe a chicken breast. That gets old really fast. I enjoy making great primal meals, and I place them in a glass Pyrex container with a lid when completed. I even freeze some of them depending on the meal. It makes it very easy to grab a pre-filled dinner container, toss it in a soft cooler with an icepack, and go. I also do not feel bad reheating foods in pyrex in the microwave, something I worried about when I used tupperware-type containers.

For exercise today I have taken several 1/2 hr walks with my dog. I also plan on doing a small workout a little later this evening, before I shower and get ready for bed. 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Saturday's primal living

Today was a great day! I started out with 2 free range organic eggs, and off I went to the Farmer's Market. I purchased more eggs, organic lettuce, chard, and also garlic and broccoli. Next I went to Crossfit for a nice workout. I had to go to a meeting at 9am, then I headed home with my fresh food supplies

My girlfriends and I decided to meet at a locovore restaurant Dolce Vita, where I had a nice scallop/tossed salad creation followed by their chicken, avacado and bacon sandwich with no bread of course! The dressing that came on it was spicy and amazing. We went to a local museum for a while then called it a day.

Next I picked up my stepson, bought a few more things, stopping at a newer local organic locovore store called Green Planet Grocery. They have the best fresh made organic almond butter. The stuff is to die for. I eat Waaaaay too much of it, so I only buy a small tub once a week.
Then we went for a long walk when we got home.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Primal Blogging

OK, so apparently I suck at blogging. I just don't know really what to post and/or am really busy and don't really have time to do this sort of thing daily.

Monday I had an excellent primal blueprint basic movement workout, with some slow moving added in. I knew it would be a tough work week so I did probably 1 1/2 hrs of slow cardio. I also did some primal cooking. I used a recipe to make my own paleo bars. I used organic coconut oil, organic creamed coconut, and instead of using a food processor on my almonds I just used some almond meal I had already around the house. They turned out OK, but I think I would mix up the ingredients a little next time. There is definitely something missing. Also I made some primal meatballs with ground venison, ground pork butt and almond meal. With some italian seasonings mixed in and browned in olive oil. Those also were OK but not spectacular. I clearly need to work on my recipe collection.

I did intermittent fasting on Tuesday, while I was at work. I worked a 12 hr shift so I skipped breakfast and lunch, and had an early dinner about 4pm. Home chores kept me from any activity when I got home. Today I worked 12 hrs again, and again I will on Thursday. Dreadful schedule. It is putting a damper on my life and my abiliy to enjoy this primal challenge. I plan on doing the intermittent fasting again on Friday, just until dinner. I lost about 2-3lbs since I started this last week. I will continue to post on how this is working out.
I still have some trepidation about possibly screwing up my metabolism, and I really don't want to get obsessive about food and "dieting" again, ever! I would rather have the higher body fat! That was a terrible way to live, but I would like to see how my body enjoys eating, living, working out, and playing primally!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My movnat experience

That's all I can say. No, actually I have a lot more to say, but Wow kinda sums it up.

So yesterday in Toronto I attended a Movnat workshop at StrengthboxGreg Carver  and Liz's place up in Toronto. (Sorry Liz I did not get your last name. And also not to forget beautiful Etta, who joined in during the morning session!)

This was an entire day about primal movement, and it was tough, exciting, and fascinating all at once. Erwan Le Corre, the instructor of Movnat, is a very intense fellow who also has a charming French accent and a sense of humor about learning the basics which really helped the learning process. He stressed that a primal man would use his intelligence to survive, not just his strength. He often would humorously show how conventional training or logic did not apply in the real world application if you were outdoors. One of the most fun parts was when he showed us how easily it would be to get up on a tree branch (pre-installed indoors at the gym). Some incredibly fit men tried and couldn't even come close. It was amusing to see that strength training will not necessarily guarantee survival, if it came down to it.

There were a group of the women practicing the move over on the pullup bars, and we had greater success. I think it was because we grasped that upper body strength could not be relied on for this move, and used momentum and gravity to assist our efforts. Either that or the pullup bar was way easier than a tree branch!

So what we essentially learned were the basic movements of natural movement: Walking, running, moving on all 4's, climbing, balancing, jumping, lifting heavy things (also carrying them) and throwing/catching.
In each of these categories, we were shown multiple variations of how these movements could be carried out, and also how they may be practiced indoors, in a gym, for instance.  Also how to scan the environment for opportunities to practice these movements, using what is available to you, wherever you are.

The numerous ways these movements were practical in real life were apparent to anyone who spends time outdoors, even in the city! He even gave examples as how these movements could help if you were attacked, or if you needed to get/run away. Overall it was a great introduction to natural movement. I was very impressed with the fitness of Erwan Le Corre. I have never seen such a perfect example of a man who was completely a "human animal". Every move he did was with incredible grace and gentleness, even as feats of great strength were done easily and softly. I do not spend a lot of time in a gym, mainly working out at home, so I really can't compare this to much but it was really something to see. Everything he did was such an example of how one could be completely at home in one's body, in control of it at all times and making it all appear very easy. He really appeared animal-like. The way a cat moves. That's him.