Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Day 9

Today is my 9th day on the Paleo Diet and I just passed the midpoint of my 14 day journey into Paleo territory. Although I've been eating good, nutritious foods, I have been very liberal with my portions, drifting bit out of the zone. This week I will commit to getting my zone ratios back on track.

Paleo foods consumed yesterday:
7:30 am
  • 6 Egg whites with spinach and red cabbage
  • 1 cup raw organic broccoli sprouts
  • 1/2 cup organic strawberries
  • 1 small organic apple
  • 3 tbs Avocado
12:15 pm
  • 3 oz Organic turkey breast (deli meat)
  • 1/4 cantaloupe
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1/2 honeydew melon
  • 3 tbs Avocado
4:15 pm
  • 1 Venison Sausage-whole foods brand
  • 1/2 cup grapes
  • 1/2 cup pineapple
  • 8 macadamia nuts(2 extra fat blocks)
8:30 pm
  • 3 oz ground organic Turkey meat
  • Sauteed broccoli, red onion and celery
  • 6 crushed walnuts
Total Blocks= 10+2 fat blocks

Yesterday's Crossfit WOD: Weighted Pull-ups 1x7
Body weight - 2.5- 5 - 7.5 - 10 (pr)- 11 (pr) - 12.5 (pr)
***Last time we did this workout I failed at 8 pounds. Last June I couldn't do a single body weight pull-up.

Monday, November 26, 2007

This past weekend I was one of 54 crossfit enthusiasts to participate in the Level 1 Crossfit certification seminar held at the Oakland Fire Tower. The seminar was lead by Crossfit CEO and founder Greg Glassman, Nicole Carol and Dave Castro with the assistance of Northern California Crossfit Trainers Jolie Gentry, Robb Wolf, Rob MIller, Adrien Bozman and or very own Nicole Okumo and Mike MInium. The crew did an OUTSTANDING job of leading us in this seminar, I couldn't have asked for better instructors. Instead of rabbling on and on about the seminar, I'll break it down like this:

The Good:

*A great opportunity to meet/interact with the larger Crossfit Community.
*It provided me with the knowledge and tools that are essential for safe, effecient CF training.
*Learned the correct technique and form used to perform the nine fundamental movements that are at the core of CF workouts and in all functional movements in life.
*Exposed me to a new definition of fitness.

The Bad:

-Lack of instruction on coaching.
-Not enough emphasis on nutrition.
-Not enough lecture on programing.
-Not enough time for questions at the end of the nutrition and programing lectures.

The Ugly:
The look on my face during Fight Gone Bad.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Give Thanx

I'm very fortunate in that I have a very health conscious sister who is also a pastry chief. I am forever grateful for her. She has been a vegetarian for 17 years and raw, meaning she eats foods in their natural state (and ya'll thought Paleo was hard) for the last 6 months. This requires a great deal of planning and patience and I immensely admire her for commitment to optimal health. It's a familiar scene at every family function; everyone eagerly awaits for their share of Arcelia's tasty desserts. Mmmmm....and boy is it worth the wait!
Aware of my enormous sweet tooth and my strict Paleo eating, this Thanksgiving Arcelia made a Paleo Pecan Pie. She didn't share the recipe but she did mention that the pie crust was made of almond meal and the meat of the pie was composed of pecans, dates and natural juices for sweetness. It was the first pie to go, followed by a non-Paleo Pecan Pie and a Pumpkin-Cherry Pie.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Day 1

Before pics taken 11/19

When I ran into my fellow caveboy Max today he wasn't feelin' so hot, but I gotta say that day 1 went pretty smoothly for me. I think this is partly because I didn't just jump right into Paleo cold turkey. Instead, I gradually eliminated non-Paleo foods from my diet in the days leading up to today, making the transition much easier. I must point out however, that Max is being ultra Paleo by not drinking any coffee.
You go boy! I, on the other hand, am not that hard core.

The following is my "Not so Hard Core" version of Paleo:
-Low-fat meat
-Organic Veggies
-Organic Fruit
-Protein Powder (emergencies only)
-Coffee w/ a little cream only
-Olive oil (for cooking only)
-Red Wine (Thanksgiving only @ the request of mi familia)

Foods I gathered & consumed today:
7:45 am
-4 Egg Whites scrambled with mushrooms, bell peppers and tomatoes
-1 small Organic Apple
-olive oil
Approx. 2 Blocks

11:15 am
-(+/-) 3oz Canned Tuna with salt & pepper
-16oz Coffee w/ a splash of cream
-Fruit Salad [cantaloupe, honeydew melon, grapes, pineapple]
Approx. 3 Blocks

3:45 pm
-Organic Raw Food Bar
3 Blocks

7:00 pm
-2 oz sliced Turkey
1 small Organic Apple
2 Blocks (subtracted carbs to accomodate for my post workout meal)

8:30 pm
-4 oz Salmon
-2 Tangerines
-1 cup steamed Brocolli
-1 cup Organic Strawberries
2.5 Blocks (added carbs for a favorable post workout meal)

Total= Approx. 12.5 Blocks (Yikes!)

Workout: Crossfit
-Back Squat 5x5 @ 97#
-Shoulder Press 5x5 @ 53#
-Deadlift 5x5 @ 150#

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I will officially begin my two week experiment with the Paleo diet tomorrow. I've slowly begun making the transition from Zone to Paleo so I am pretty sure that it will go well and am really looking forward to the next 14 days.
I plan to continue using Zone portions at every meal while allowing more flexibility with the total number of blocks per day. This is subject to change and will vary accordingly as I adjust to the diet.

Food Eaten today:

10:30 am
4 Egg whites
1.5 oz Ground Turkey
12 Asparagus Spears
1/4 cup Peas
1 1/4 cup Berries
1/3 cup Almond Meal & Flax seed

2 pm
2 oz Grilled steak
3 tangerines
=2 Blocks

3:45 pm
2 oz grilled Salmon
2 small tomatoes w/pesto sauce
1 small pear
=2 Blocks

No workout today

Thursday, November 15, 2007


At approximately 5 this morning, I was awaken by an unusually painful cramp deep inside my belly. It felt as though someone had taken a sharp kitchen knife to my abdomen. I couldn't figure out what on earth could make me feel soo terrible. Was it something I had eaten at the Cheesecake Factory? Perhaps it was the martini I had before dinner? Nope, couldn't have been the martini. Strange, I didn't feel nauseous, just complete and utter pain.

Now normally I would've just sucked it up and let it pass, but the pain persisted becoming increasingly uncomfortable by the minute to the extent at which it was almost unbearable to breath. I quickly ate 2 painkillers chasing them down with a few walnuts and a chocolate bar (it was the only food within reach) and prayed. When I finally felt somewhat OK, I went to work. I felt alright when I got there and even agreed to pick up Nation's burgers for the construction crew at lunch. However, when 12 o'clock rolled around I was hunched over in a shady corner with my head between my knees. The pain was back and stronger than ever. I figured I would just sneak outta there at lunch. Unfortunately for me, the guys didn't forget about our lunch date. Auggie honked at me from atop his backhoe waving cash in the air and motioning me to get over to Nation's for the burger pick up, ugh! I don't know how I made it there and back in one piece and avoided barfing from the smell of the greasy bag I had to carry back to the crew who were awaiting me when I finally got back. I quickly delivered the food and was on my way outta there when Auggie yelled to me, "hey, aren't you gonna eat with us?"

There is a lesson to be learned from all of this; don't ever go to the Cheesecake Factory! No really though, this whole mess could have been easily avoided had I just stuck to my Paleolithic diet. Cave people don't eat cheesecake!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A cave girl's diet

As my interest in nutrition grows so does my heightened awareness of my food choices. I have been paying particularly close attention to the physical effects of certain foods. Bread for example, even the Lifestyles brand that is has a low GI, often leaves me feeling sluggish Similarly, large servings of dairy make me bloated and feeling heavy. I have slowly been weening myself off of these types of foods and in effect, modifying my diet to one that more closely resembles that of our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Yes y'all, I'm talking about the Paleo diet! You have to admit, the name alone draws you in. I haven't entirely crossed over just yet, but I am inching my way toward strict Paleo with each meal that enter my mouth. I am hoping that by next Monday I will be eating like a full fledged cave woman. This means no grains, legumes, dairy, alcohol and sugar. I must admit, I am bit nervous about the no alcohol part, especially around the holidays. Wish me luck!

Anyway, I am going to experiment with it for about two weeks and see where it goes from there. I am hoping to get leaner, meaner and most importantly, healthier.

To read more about Paleo Diet refer to Loren Cordain's The Paleo Diet: Lose Weight and Get Healthy by Eating the Food You Were Designed to Eat

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Don't be fooled by the name, Cindy is one tough cookie. Though she may appear harmless at first glance, this sweet mama can be vicious.

How many rounds in 20 minutes?

5 Pull-ups (I did kipping)
10 Push-ups
15 Air Squats

Total Score: 9 rounds+4 pull-ups
The push-ups were definitely my sticking point. I could get through the pull-ups and squats but I had a hard time cranking out those push-ups. Towards the end I was only to do single reps. However, I still beat my last Cindy score by two rounds, so I pretty happy about that. And boy do I feel it today! My chest, biceps and lats are all killing me-Its wonderful! :)

Food for Friday:
7:00 am
3/4 Soy Burger
1/2 Organic Apple
1 Block

8:30 am
2 oz Tuna w/ mayo
1/2 Organic Apple
1 Organic Plum
6 raw walnuts
2 Blocks

11:15 am
3 Egg whites w/ mushrooms, diced tomatoes, bell peppers
1 organic plum
olive oil (used to cook omelet)
1.5 Blocks

1:30 pm
1 oz chicken breast
1 organic kiwi
6 walnuts
1 Block

3:30 pm
1 chicken & turkey sausage link
2 red bell peppers
1 cup of organic grapes
4 macadamia nuts
3 Blocks

6:30 pm
1 lite string cheese
1 cup organic strawberries
1 Block

9:00 pm
4 oz ground turkey
2 cup steamed broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, green beans
4 oz red wine
2 dark chocolate squares
2.5 Blocks

Total Blocks for the day=11

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Gettin' Ripped!

This Sunday will mark my third straight month of Zone eating (yay!). As I mentioned before, I have definitely reaped some of the benefits of eating Zone, one of the most obvious is weight loss. I hear it all the time, "but where'd you loose it from"? Well, as a crazy as it may sound, I've lost it from everywhere! Although now it may appear that I had no fat to loose, I did. And plenty of it. I am glad to have gotten rid of a lot of access fat, now I am focusing on building more muscle mass and gettin' ripped!!!!
As a faithful Crossfitter, I find it disheartening when a WOD comes up that I have to scale down to a fraction of the prescription. Its just plain frustrating. According to Mark Rippetoe, I should just suck it up and crank it out even if it takes me 2 hours 23 minutes and 16 seconds to complete the work out. Hmmm?....no thanks. When it comes down to it, I just need to get stronger. I have a small/petite frame, so this may be bit tricky.
After I attended the weight lifting seminar in late September I was determined! On October 1st I started supplementing my regular crossfit training with additional weight training following Rippetoes 5x5 scheme (refer to Starting Strength).
This is how my quest to get my muscle on went down:
1. Week 1
Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 105#
Shoulder Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 55#
Deadlift (1 work sets x 5 reps): 130#

Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 110#
Bench Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 72#
Power Cleans (3 work sets x 5 reps): 75#

2. Week 2
Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 115#
Shoulder Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 57#
Deadlift (1 work sets x 5 reps): 150#

Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 120#
Bench Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 75#
Power Cleans (3 work sets x 5 reps): 75#

3. Week 3
Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 112#
Shoulder Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 58.5#
(no deadlift)

Power Cleans (3 work sets x 3 reps): 80#
Bench Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 77#

(no squats)
Bench Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 79#
Power Cleans (3 work sets x 3 reps): 82#
4. Week 4
Back Squat (3 work sets x 5 reps): 110#
Shoulder Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 59#

Back Squat (112)

5. 10/29-10/31
Back Squat
(3 work sets x 5 reps): 103#
Bench Press (3 work sets x 5 reps): 79#
Power Cleans (5 work sets x 3 reps): 77#

***Red Text represents the weight at which I failed.
As you can see, things started out really well and quickly went bad as the month progressed. Weeks 1 &2 were fine but by the third week I was not allowing enough recovery time between workout and became very apparent on the platform. I backed off a bit the 4th week but made sure I hit it hard at Crossfit using heavier weight for the WODs.

For November I plan to back off on the weights a bit more, focusing more on technique & form and will definitely make sure I get plenty more LEGITIMATE rest days. Please post any thoughts or suggestions to my comment. And wish me better luck this time around.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Ah, Monday...

As usual, this Sunday marked another set back for my diet. I went wine-tasting in Sonoma and feasted on excessive amounts of rich food paired with red wine and as if I hadn't done enough damage, we finished off the day with a stop at the local brewery to slug down some beers. Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it but I was definitely paying for it Monday morning....ugh....

7:30 am
-3 Eggs w/ spinach, onions and diced tomatoes
-3 tbs Avocado
-1 Peach
=3 Blocks

11:30 am
-2.5 Ounces of Tuna w/ Mayo
-1 Plum
-1 cup Blackberries
=2.5 Blocks

3:30 pm
-2 Lite String Cheese
-1 Peach
-1 Plum
-3 Macadamia Nuts
=2 Blocks

6:30 pm
-1 oz of Omega 3 Cheese
-1 cup Organic Strawberries
-3-6 Macadamia Nuts
=1 Block

8:30 pm
-4.5 oz of ground beef & buffalo
-Organic steamed Brocolli, Peas, Spinach and Green Beans
-1/2 cup of Organic Red Grape
-3 Macadamia Nuts & 3 Almonds
=3 Blocks

Total Blocks = 10.5

Crossfit Workout 7:00 PM:
4 Rounds of:
-400 Meter Run
-2 Minute Rest in between rounds


Your genes load the gun but your lifestyle pulls the trigger. -Dr. Houston