After six months of the Paleo lifestyle, I have been pleasantly surprised that weight loss is not the only benefit. I have also discovered things that have made it easier for me to continue eating clean and stay focused on my goals. Here are the top five things I’ve learned after six months of Paleo.
This Is Not A Diet – Believe me, I have seen and tried many diets and in some cases, had great results! But every time, I would give up at a certain point and get right back to sweets, processed carbs and other foods I knew were bad for me (but they tasted so good!). But that’s OK because if I gained weight, I’d just start up a newer, more improved diet! But I finally feel like I have found something that is a lifestyle and not a diet. I do not feel like I am missing out on good food and I’m not depriving myself of food.
This Is Great For My Body – One of the main reasons I started looking into Paleo was due to a post I read somewhere form a young man who was having lower back problems and how the Paleo lifestyle helped cure his bad back. Admittedly, I was skeptical but at the time my lower back pain was only getting worse. So much to the point of standing in a grocery line, wishing the people in front of me would HURRY UP so I could sit down in my car. I read all I could about Paleo, started my journey and low and behold, NO BACK PAIN after about four months! I never understood (or cared) about how a high carb diet would cause inflammation and more importantly, how changing what I eat could help. But I am now down 25 pounds, lost five inches from around my waist and have developed a much leaner and muscular body (with the help of some body weight workouts and weights).
It’s OK To Cheat – I know a lot of people despise cheat days or cheat meals and I respect that. But I believe there is some truth to letting yourself enjoy a good cheat meal every now and then. Personally, it allows me to enjoy some of my favorites like pizza or ice cream on occasion. As long as you limit these to a few times a month, you should be fine. And more importantly, lose the guilt. You earned it. If you’re like me, you will probably be so concerned about putting more pounds on that you automatically limit these meals without thinking much about it.
The Gut Is The Last To Go – Of course, where you want the fat to fall off is the last place you’ll lose it. I titled my blog, Tan Pants Diaries, because of a pair if tan pants I had that were always too tight. But I loved them! After a few weeks, I was disappointed that they were still a bit snug but I didn’t let that discourage me. The more I read, the more I learned about fat loss and there is just know way to target where the weight comes off. I knew I was losing fat, and that’s what was important. After a few months, the pants fit me great but there is still a little bit of flab I’m trying to lose.
Keep It Simple, Stupid – I wrote in an earlier post about the enormous amount of money spent on fitness. And I used to be one of the first that HAD to have the latest tech gadget that would monitor my heart rate, track my route, tell me how many calories I burned, order my groceries, etc. But the one thing none of these ever did was help me lose weight. Don’t get me wrong, some of the information is great, but none of it was really necessary to help with fat loss. There are a number of people today that have seen tremendous results through Paleo and are not exercising at all. While I do encourage some form of exercise to keep you healthy or get you in great shape, it is not necessary to lose the fat and none of the gadgets you see get you to eat better meals so save some money and spend it on some great food. The key to losing fat is to control insulin levels by eating healthy Paleo foods and staying away from the sugars and processed carbs.