I’m a 30 something year old Graphic Designer from the UK and have been living paleo since August 2012, after an intensive month long training course with Rob Coster. I first heard the term ‘paleo’ when he mentioned it a few weeks before I started training with him, and I was immediately intrigued. I’d experimented with living gluten free a few times before, as I knew it made me feel better (less bloated, less grumpy, more energy) but I’d struggled to stick with it, not having any real structure. So when I read up on paleo, I was like YES. It made total sense to me.
First up, I am not a dietician or a scientist, so anything I say here is just my opinion. So, the way I see it, humans were designed to eat on the run: meat, veg and fruit that were available around us. The high carb ‘ceral’ diets that we’ve ended up eating these days were never intended to be how we ate all the time. Things like corn, rice and wheat were farmed because our population was increasing and we needed staples to feed the masses that were high in cheap energy – they were designed to keep us going when the ‘real’ food was in short supply. These days, trying to find something that hasn’t had an unnecessary grain added to it is nigh on impossible. Everything is coated in crumbs, or has a wheat-based sauce with it, or comes with added pasta or rice.
I ate paleo for a couple of weeks before training started and I felt awesome. Then Rob put me through my paces, with weight training, circuits and interval training, and my body responded like it had been waiting for me to figure this out. I gained lots of muscle, lost LOTS of fat and went from a size 14 to a 10 within the month, but with guns and the makings of a six pack! I’d never felt so good.
After training with Rob ended, I carried on with the training at my local council gym and continued to progress. Eventually, I got to a size 8 and my body looked like I’d never imagined it could. The cellulite-cursed bum and legs were gone, my stomach was flat and toned, my arms were muscular and slim.
Then about 8 months in, I got lazy and I got cocky. I thought I was slim and muscular, and my work was done. I started to have ‘cheat weekends’ and at first that was ok, though I immediately noticed I got moody and cranky after eating non-paleo foods. The problem with non-paleo foods is that they are so goddam addictive. In my pre-paleo life, I would have happily eaten a mixing bowl full of pasta or a whole loaf of bread. It’s like my body doesn’t have an off switch when it comes to carbs! So I ended up putting on 5lbs, feeling crappy, getting back the anxiety issues I’d forgotten were a problem and being generally a miserable git. I even stopped going to the gym as much, which definitely made me feel crappy.
Today, I am reigniting my love affair with paleo. We all fall off the wagon from time to time, but the important thing is to keep heading in the right direction, because that’s a lot better than not trying at all. So I’m back to getting excited about food, working out every day and feeling strong and awesome, because seriously, who wouldn’t want to feel like that?!
Below are my progress pics from day one of training to the end of my training with Rob Coster, who by the way is awesome, even if he does play Simply Red in his gym.