Paleo Challenge Week 3: I think I see the light

by AliMargo on March 7, 2015

Chocolate Chia Seed Power Breakfast: my new fave.

Weight: 132.4 (arrrrrgggghhhh)

Screw the damn scale, I hit my stride this week, finding more of a daily rhythm in terms of food choices. I’m looking much leaner and my clothes are fitting differently (even though the scale won’t f—king budge) and I feel good. My skin continues to improve and I do believe now, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my acne was due to a food allergy and that I need to stick to this plan for the long term. The skin is the largest organ in the body and a surefire indicator when something is not agreeing with us.

I owe my shift in eating to Laurel. In her weekly email last week she wrote about how she’d rather focus on delicious preparations of Paleo foods than try to make “fake” foods to substitute some of our favorite dishes we’ve had to forgo on this challenge, like making “pasta” noodles out of veggies. I totally agree.

This week I focused on clean eating and building my meals around foods I enjoy that are allowed, and that’s starting to feel more natural to me. I cut out a lot of the new Paleo foods I thought might be too calorie-dense (like mayo and the “Crack” granola) and focused on lean meats and green vegetables. I am also watching my intake of nuts—just using them in recipes and not for snacks. I also think I figured out how to eat small amounts throughout the day; starting with a light breakfast of chia pudding with nuts and almond butter and sliced banana and then snacking on leftover veggies, sliced turkey, apples, and the occasional Lara bar throughout the day. Dinners have been simple: beautiful proteins with salad and a green vegetable.

All that said, I was still disappointed by the scale. I don’t know how I’ll ever break the 130-pound barrier (not to mention I haven’t lost an ounce since I started). However, my body is definitely changing; my clothes are fitting differently and I am fitting into some of my smaller clothes again. A few friends have commented that they are shocked by how much thinner I am in my face. I have to just keep charging ahead and hope I’ll turn the corner at some point before the challenge is over. I’d love to see myself at 125 by the end of the challenge and at 120 or below by the start of summer.

Do I look fat in this? Heading out for a skin up Tiehack looking leaner, but not lighter.

A few new recipes this week:
Meatballs With Spicy Tomato Sauce
I grabbed a package of ground beef from Crystal River Meats and was looking for a fun preparation and found this recipe. I didn’t have any tomato paste so I used red curry paste instead and loved the way it blended with the unique spices this recipe called for in the meat mixture like minced ginger, cumin and cinnamon; it was more like an Indian flavor profile, or maybe Moroccan? (Anyone been to that part of the world who can attest to this?). The tomato sauce was simple and delicious. I am definitely craving more spice now that my palate is not as sweets oriented. The only issue I had was with the texture: the meatballs were a little bit mealy and I’m not sure if that’s from using almond meal or if it’s because the farm fresh egg I used was too small and I probably should have used 2. Per Laurel’s suggestion, I served this over big pieces of grilled broccoli and it held up beautifully to the sauce, and looked pretty too. No more spiralizer—I don’t like the sogginess of veggies cut that thin. Would rather have big, meaty pieces.

Cashew Hummus
I love the texture of this delicious veggie dip and have enjoyed it as a mid-day snack or for lunch. It’s very satisfying on many levels: it’s filling, for one, so you can’t sit there and eat it all day like you might with chickpea hummus. It’s got great texture and wonderful flavor as you are basically taking the same seasonings and adding it to a cashew/coconut milk/tahini blend: lemon, garlic, and paprika. I would love to try this with sundried tomatoes or roasted red peppers. I would for sure serve this at a party—I don’t think anyone would even know the difference. I wanted to try Laurel’s artichoke hummus, which would be lower in calories but I bought fresh artichokes not realizing that would not work for a recipe calling for artichoke hearts! (I did steam them and enjoyed them as a fun appetizer).

Chia Pudding Power Breakfast
This is my new go-to breakfast food: chocolate chia pudding with sliced banana, sliced almonds and chopped walnuts, a spoonful of almond butter and shredded coconut. I’ll throw berries in there too if I have them. I like this because it’s light enough to eat before workouts and gives me a little sugar boost in the morning.

Justin’s Almond Butter Packets
Loving these for Bowl hikes and skinning sessions when I need a snack that’s going to sustain me for 1-2 hours of hard exercise. Better than a Lara bar for long term energy.

Here’s an eye opener …
Confession: the only time I’ve cheated on this entire challenge is by drinking a beer on the weekends. I had one on my birthday (that I totally enjoyed) and 2 yesterday at après ski when my friends got a pitcher and … it made me feel so sick afterwards I honestly don’t know if I’ll drink one again. My system is obviously going through some kind of detox and the beer did NOT agree with me. I may be on club soda from now on. I like wine, but only if it’s really good wine. I enjoy champagne but find it gives me a headache afterwards. So my partying days might be coming to an end…

Goals for this Week:
I still haven’t been able to shake my after dinner snack attacks and have been sneaking a little chia pudding as a dessert. I would like to cut that out and just have peppermint tea and call it a day since these are additional calories I really don’t need.

More Cardio
I do a hard, hot power yoga class 5-6 days a week but I think it’s time to bring in more cardio to help me drop these impossible-to-lose pounds! I want to buy those super cushiony Hoka OneOne running shoes and start running again. It’s always been the most effective for me in terms of getting results and I love that it’s a faster, go-anywhere sport than anything else we do in the mountains. So this week I’m gonna go for 4 days of cardio. Nice weather always helps!

That’s all she wrote, kids. Would love to hear your thoughts and comments, especially from anyone out there who’s doing this challenge! Anyone lost weight? What’s your trick? Please help me!

XOXO,

Ali

 

 

 

 

 

 

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