Friday, September 5, 2014

The Weekend TO DO LIST:

Are you gearing up for Monday? I know a few of you are and have already started shopping/preparing meals (great work guys)...

But, if you haven't, here is your TO DO LIST + what BEING primal is:

    This is a necessary task in order to do this challenge right! So, go into your fridge, pantry, under your bed or wherever you are storing the goods and throw unapproved primal foods away. We are tossing everything that has sugar, wheat, soy, corn syrup, grains, or any ingredient with words that you cannot pronounce or understand! We are ensuring we intake simple and fresh ingredients.

Yes, that means no pizza, pretzels, ice cream, pasta, cereal and moonpies for 21 days!
    What to throw out:
  • Beverages- bottled juices; almond milk, soy milk, rice milk, flavored milks; powdered drinks; powdered juices; sodas/diet sodas; sports drinks; designer coffees; energy drinks; sweetened cocktails; sweetened teas. Stick with water, herbal tea or plain coffee for you coffee lovers!
  • Baking Ingredients- starches; syrups; corn meal; flours; powders (i.e. milk, gluten); yeast; sweeteners; sugars. {Personally, I kept my flours and sugars due to baking for church functions and birthdays. I just kept it high up in the back of my pantry and away from my view or reach!}
  • Condiments- honey mustard; jams and jellies; ketchup; mayonnaise/low-fat mayo (psst! get ready for my mayo recipe!); salad dressings/low-fat dressings; other cooking items containing high-fructose corn syrup, sugary sweeteners or PUFA oils. Soy/tabasco/worcestershire/barbeque sauce is okay in moderation, but get the highest quality with minimal sugars and PUFAs.(You can make delicious primal sauces/dressings etc which I will introduce you to!)
  • Dairy- ((zero dairy in your diet is best because it causes a spike in insulin and it's also a good idea if you are trying to lean out)) processed cheese and spreads; ice cream; nonfat and low-fat milk; frozen yogurt; sweetened non-fat or low-fat yogurts. Stick with unpasteurized or raw dairy, fermented dairy (i.e. yogurt), organic/GMO/hormone-free dairy and with the highest fat content (whole milk). 
  • Fats and Oils- trans and partially-hydrogenated oils; butter spreads and sprays; canola, cottonseed, corn, soybean, safflower, sunflower, and other high polyunsaturated oils; margarine; vegetable shortening. Stick with ghee, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, real butter and other saturated animal fats.
  • Fast Food- all genetically changed industrialized food, such as, burgers, chicken nuggets, french fries, hot dogs, tacos, etc.
  • Fish- fish caught from polluted waters; large fish (i.e. sword fish); some farmed fish. 
  • Grains- ALL grains: bread, pasta, flour based products, crackers, cookies, corn, cereal, rice, tortillas, breakfast foods (i.e. oatmeal and cream of wheat), chips, cooking grains (i.e. barley and rye), pretzels, donuts, pizza, and puffed snacks.  
  • Legumes- peanuts and peanut products; soybeans; lentils; peas; alfalfa; beans; and tofu. ((Legumes, especially along with grains, contain anti-nutrients. They also stimulate high amounts of insulin.))
  • Meat- all pre-packaged meats processed with harmful chemicals and sweeteners (i.e. sliced lunch meat); smoked meats; cured meats; meats containing nitrites and nitrates. We don't want to eat meats from animals that ate a lot of grains, so TRY to stick with grass-fed or organic meats.
  • Processed Foods- granola bars; protein bars; snack products; frozen packaged breakfast/lunch/dinner products; energy bars; fruit bars/rolls.
  • Sweets- sugars; cakes; cookies; brownies; donuts; pie; evaporated cane juice; honey; chocolate syrup; trail mixes; powdered sugar; raw sugar; molasses; HFCS; popsicles; frozen desserts; chocolate. This challenge will help get rid of your cravings and sugar crashes! 

As you can see, the bulk of your food comes from the protein and vegetables. The other spectrums of this food pyramid are with moderation. You can find the best produce and sources of animals from farmers markets, co-ops, Community Supported Agriculture, Whole Foods, or simply look carefully in your local grocery store. I am able to go to our Wholesale stores and find certified organic and grass-fed products, as well as our local grocery stores. It's all about reading the label! Do your best with what you can find and with the financial situation you are in. If you cannot afford all grass-fed meat, then by all means, just eat the best meat you can find! Without spending so much money on bread, bagels, cereals, snacks, etc. you will come to find eating Primal is pretty cheap and especially when you plan ahead. 
Examples of staples to keep in your fridge/pantry:
  • Nuts (great snack)
  • Nut butters
  • Eggs (hard boil some and keep separately for snacks or to put on salads)
  • Vegetables (best to eat within a week and be sure to store/freeze appropriately)
  • Fruits (I keep apples around because they last longer and, again, store appropriately for lasting results)
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Coconut milk
  • Meat, Fish, Fowl (keep stored in freezer and some in fridge a couple days before eating)
  • Onions
  • Sweet Potatoes and other tubers
  • herbs 
When it comes to fast food and eating out (or as we call in the primal/paleo world: foraging), find places that serve fresh ingredients and the best quality food. If needed, ask for your food to be cooked in olive oil or ask for lemon and olive oil as a side dressing to ensure you're sticking with the Primal challenge. Just tell them you have an allergy and they won't mind too much. Look for meats, eggs, fish, vegetables and some fruit wherever you go. You're bound to find something Primal!
{This was a forage night for my family at Moe's Southwestern Grill.}


{this is my husband hiking}
    To be primal is to move A LOT. Move frequently at a low-level pace whether you're engaging in exercise or just walking to the bank down the street instead of driving. Find ways to increase movement. If you're going to work, park farthest away in the parking lot in order to walk a longer distance into work. Instead of taking the elevator, go up those stairs! Find times to take walks with your family after dinner or go on a Saturday hike. If you have a desk job, take breaks throughout the day to get up and move around. 

{at my old crossfit gym after throwing a bunch of heavy weights around}
To be primal is also to take a couple days a week to perform high-intensity strength training sessions that last 30 minutes or less. This includes: pushups, pullups, squats, planks, situps, etc. So, NO, you don't need to go out and run 10 miles to look good! What you eat makes up most of what we look like physically and exercise is just the extra bonus. 

To be primal is to sprint every now and then! Go out with your kids and do 20 meter sprints for about 5 times or if you're on a bike do some sprints every 20 seconds for a couple minutes. There are many benefits to performing sprint workouts about every week or week and a half, such as, muscle fiber growth. 

To be primal is to PLAY! Another great way to move around, to get in sprints, and to spend time with your family and/or friends. Go to the park and play on the playground, play tennis, participate in a basketball game, throw a baseball with your son, chase your kids around the yard, throw a frisbee, go slack lining, or go kayaking. 
{that's me! playing at a family reunion}

    Lastly, take time away from the craziness of daily life. Take time away from your computer, phone, TV and spend time with family and friends to build relationships. Too much digital stimulation is not good for our health, so put down media at least an hour or two before bed, so you ensure a better nights sleep. While we are talking about sleep now, make sure you get in plenty of sleep each night to let your body repair itself and to get your REM cycles in (8 hours). It is also important to prepare for sleep. Dim lights as it gets dark, turn off the TV, and do something relaxing. This will help you have a more restful night and feel refreshed in the morning.