Primarily Paleo

A path to wellbeing

Guest Post: What Can You Expect After a Paleo Challenge?

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Here’s a guest post from my sister, Tricia. She’s been a CrossFitter for over 3 years.  She recently completed the LuRong Living Paleo Challenge, which lasted for 9 weeks. I asked her to share her experience to inspire those of you who have done Paleo challenges to continue to make choices that are in line with your health goals. Once you’ve experienced how great you can feel, it’s easy to stay with a Paleo-style way of living. I’d love to hear from those of you who have completed a challenge and improved your health, and those of you who are on the fence to try something new you can always start tomorrow!

I recently completed the LuRong Paleo Challenge, a nine week-long challenge that included benchmark and performance WOD’s. I had done a Paleo challenge once before starting the week before Christmas 2011. It was only six weeks. Prior to signing up for the LuRong Challenge I said if I could eat Paleo throughout the Christmas holiday, I could do it anytime.

The biggest point of my anxiety was planning meals. I work for an Italian restaurant. Enough said. I decided to stop drinking coffee during this time, as well just to see how I felt. The first week I was a mess. Fuzzy, tired, headachey are just a few adjectives to describe my state of existence. I knew it was a detox from sugar, caffeine, preservatives and gluten. I thought “how am I going to do this for two months”? I trusted it would get better and that I just had to go one day at a time. Incorporating a lot of green vegetables was my goal.

I love veggies but hate the preparation. I got a kale smoothie recipe from Primarily Paleo that helped. I did not eat anything with preservatives. I read labels diligently. I stayed away from packaged goods even though some were acceptable for the challenge.

The days and weeks passed. The noticeable changes were clearer skin, shinier hair, no bloating or puffiness, excellent digestive and colon functions and no sugar cravings. I lost over seven inches. I do not weigh myself so I don’t know if I lost weight. My internal health is more important  to me than what I weigh.

I bettered my performance and overall I feel energized and light. It has been four days since the challenge has ended and I have not gone astray. I have had coffee and it was delicious!

I can honestly say I am afraid to put any non-Paleo foods back into my diet because I know how awful I will feel. It’s that simple. I am lean and fit. I’m the smallest I’ve ever been in my entire 43 years of life and the healthiest too! What I learned is pretty much what we all already know…fruits, vegetables, lean protein, nuts and seeds are our friends.

3 Comments

  1. As an experiment yesterday in the late morning before my deadlifting workout, I decided to have a breve mocha (made with half and half) from Starbucks. I had had a no-carb breakfast and thought a little sugar might help me, though I was a bit afraid to drink it! Within 15 minutes, before I had finished the drink, I started to get a headache. It “felt” like it was because of the drink — either the dairy or the chocolate syrup, though of course I don’t really know. I had a headache all through the night and this morning. I won’t be having another mocha for a long, long time.

    • Thanks for your comment Fran. Was this also the first time you had dairy after the challenge? After eating a diet clean of sugar, gluten, dairy, etc. it’s important to introduce one thing at a time so you can determine what it is that might be triggering you. People are often surprised that something they had eaten regularly before can cause such a discomfort now. For those of you who have already introduced more one food group, you can still test it by waiting a week or so and trying again.

  2. Pingback: Living a Paleo Lifestyle and Valentine’s Day | Primarily Paleo

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