So remember long ago when I said I was committing to the Paleo 30 day challenge? By long ago, I mean last week? Well, overall I did a pretty good job. That is until Saturday came along. I worked Saturday from 7:15 to 2 and for some reason, was overcome with the desire to eat carbs. By carbs, I mean amazing homemade fruit tarts, chocolate chip cookies, and cupcakes. (In case you were wondering, I didn’t eat each of those things, but I did try them. How can I sell foods that I haven’t even tried? <– how I justify it.)
My cheating doesn’t necessarily stop there. In the past week, I’ve also had dairy. Paleo insists on no dairy (among other things) so naturally I added some feta cheese to my salads throughout the week. Oh, I’m also drinking coffee right now with cream in it. That’s right, I’m saying NO to the man (in this case, Robb Wolf) and eating the crap out of dairy and carbs. Just kidding..sort of.
So this is my excuse for my Paleo Faileo: I don’t want to do it. I don’t want to not eat carbs. I like carbs and I also like dairy. I understand the idea of moderation which I think is key if you want to live a healthy life. I am just not personally interested in a diet or lifestyle that cuts out so many wonderful foods.
I know so many people that have the self control to do cleanses, extreme diets, etc. and that’s great if it makes them feel good. I’ve thought about doing things like that (obviously, Paleo) but I never do because ultimately, I just don’t want to. I’ve exhibited self control and discipline in other aspects of my life for example, training for two marathon by myself. It can be tough to stay motivated to get your butt out of bed at 6 am on a Saturday and run 20 miles by yourself. For some people, that’s too difficult, so training with groups is the best route for them. In the exercises and fitness part of my life, I am very motivated and self disciplined. In other parts? Not so much.
So, I guess I’m just saying restrictive diets or lifestyles, are not for me. They probably never will be and that’s cool.
I’m also the kind of person that beats myself up a lot. For example, I feel terribly guilty and bad about myself if I miss a workout. I know that’s completely ridiculous and not worth getting upset about, but it’s hard for me to control. With a diet like Paleo (or anything else), I can easily see myself slipping into a world of self trash talk. That’s clearly not healthy no matter how many carbs you cut.
So, I’ve reevaluated what I need to do or how I need to live in order to feel good. I still think I don’t need an overload of carbs, I don’t really think anyone does (unless you run marathons every weekend). But like I said, I like carbs. I like oatmeal, sometimes a cookie, candy at a movie theatre, brown rice with my sushi, etc. So I think what I’m going to try and do is just limit my carbs towards the end of the day. I don’t think I need a plate of pasta before bed (gotta carbo load for sleepy time), but if it happens, it happens.
I’m not at all discounting the Paleo lifestyle. I think if you want to lose weight, it’s probably a great way to go. I’ll definitely keep trying Paleo recipes and like always, CrossFit my brains out (CrossFit basically endorses Paleo eating).
As much as I feel like Paleo would work, it’s also hard to distinguish between it and any other diet/lifestyle. What makes this legitimate? What makes any diet legit? That there’s a bests-selling book about it? The thing is, there are diets and lifestyles for just about anyone (fruitarianism anyone?). Every book about those diets quotes doctors and studies to back up their claims…every book. I feel like there are “experts” in just about anything but for the most part, they’re self proclaimed experts.
Again, I’m not discounting any person or diet, it’s just something to keep in mind. When you really think about it, everyones just trying to sell a product (like a book) so who can you trust?
That’s why I think when it comes down to it, you have to choose a diet/lifestyle that works for you and makes you feel good. I do feel better when I eat less carbs because I feel less lethargic. On the other hand, I enjoy carbs and don’t think they’re all bad so I won’t be shunning them from my diet.
In the end, it’s just food. There are more important things in life then stressing out over a cookie or thinking about that bagel going straight to your ass. More important things…like pancakes. Real all-purpose flour enriched pancakes.
Do you follow a diet? What do you think about the food/diet industry?