There is a line…

Along the Paleo journey I have been introduced to some interesting new (and healthy) food options, all of which I have been assured are “good for you”, and most of which are nice. But there have been the occasional “you want me to eat/drink what?” moments

On the good side…

I must give a big shout to my still favourite snack from The Naked Ape (http://www.thenakedape.co.uk). these are absolutely fantastic and have saved me on numerous occasions from having to eat crap – I always keep a couple in my case for emergencies. They wont fill you up, but they will keep you going for a few hours when your surrounded by sandwich shops!

I am also (probably not completely a good thing) becoming addicted to very dark chocolate – at least 80% cocoa, and have been amazed by how much difference there is in flavour depending on the origin – I think I am well on my way to becoming a chocolate snob/bore

Coconut – who knew? Me and Mrs Trog are on three a week (shared) and had a mild panic this week when Morrison’s didn’t have any on display. We were saved from having to write a ‘strongly worded letter’ by a very helpful man who got us three from ‘out the back’. (I always offer to open them so I can have the milk…)

My latest discovery in the ‘good things’ list is the ‘bulletproof coffee’. I did hear about these some time ago, but I dismissed them as somewhat fanatical in nature – they really do sound horrible when you read how to make one, and you will wonder why spoil a good cup of coffee? However, I was very wrong – they are delicious and easy to make, and can easily get you through a morning if you have no time for a decent breakfast!

On the bad side…

There is however, and should be, a line that no man be asked to cross. It is a good rule in life that nothing green should be drunk. Take Crème de Menthe for example – do you know anyone that has survived a Crème de Menthe hangover? – exactly, always fatal. So when I returned from holiday to see instructor Pete drinking a green liquid, I had to demand WTF is that? I was offered a taste… I tried it… it tasted like green stuff. I have green stuff growing on the flat roof of my kitchen. I can see it from the bathroom and have often wondered what it is and how I could get rid of it. I have NEVER wondered what it would taste like scraped off and blended into a green drink!… but now I know… it tastes like shit.

Now I am sure you can send off for a DVD on just how good for you this green stuff is, and I am sure they will say it is soooooo good that it is more than worth the £40 it is going to set you back. However, I think we are drifting too far away from the caveman here and into Neanderthal territory

I will not be partaking of the green stuff… EVER… unless of course the DVD says it makes your penis bigger, in which case £40 is a bargain!

Fluffy Ickle Paleo Pancakes

paleoI must confess that I was dubious.

I was wrong. These pancakes were delicious.

I found several recipes and then played around with them until they came out like this….. then I knew we had a winner.

Here’s the recipe for light & fluffy, coco-nutty pancakes.

For a large enough batch to feed a family, you will need:-

1 cup of coconut flour

1 teaspoon bicarb of soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

4 large eggs

a good ‘glug’ of coconut milk or almond milk

(told you I wasn’t a technical cook!)

Mix the eggs until they’re frothy, and add in the honey and a few tablespoons of milk.paleo

Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then add the wet to the dry stuff and whisk it well.

You need to have a nice, thick batter. I have been imprecise about the amount of milk so that you can adjust your batter consistency. Coconut flour varies, and it’s super-absorbant, so if at first your mix looks like something you could glue old chairs together with, just add more liquid!

Once you have concocted a potion which you are happy with, get a pan.

Melt a little fat of your choice (coconut oil is good, but butter tastes better) in a non-stick pan.

Add a ladle of your mixture to the pan, on a medium heat. Once the batter starts to dry around the edges (2 or 3 minutes) and bubble a little, have a peak underneath. If it’s holding paleotogether and is browning, it’s time to flip!

Another minute on the other side and you are good to go.

Enjoy with your preferred accompaniments. For me, it’s lemon juice and maple syrup. Shluuurp.

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Body update – eating fat, to lose fat

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Waiting for passing strangers to give me sugar cubes, Summer 2011

Today I weighed in at 11 stones & 10lbs. That’s now a total weightloss of 13lbs.

Waist 32″, Hips (at widest round bum) 41″, thigh 24″, Neck 13.5″. Can’t vouch for the accuracy of these as I could only find a metal builder’s tape measure, but let’s just say that my clothes are MUCH looser than they were 4 months ago.

On my last update I weighed 12 stones dead. Since then I’ve been on a two week holiday and had a couple of regrettable wine related incidents, so I am pretty happy with that. Still eating 100% ‘clean’.

Here’s a pictorial progress chart. No prizes for noticing that my hair seems to be shrinking at an even faster rate than my body is diminishing……

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April body shape. Work to be done here.

Trog Dad is like a teenager again. He’s now lost well over 2 stones and is wearing shirts that have been sat in the closet for almost as long as the years I have known him. (Still going grey though, mwa ha ha). The two Trog kids are both also looking leaner. Trog Baby may only be 5 years old, but is built like a brick shit-house. Trog Teen is developing a beautiful lithe shape, with broadening shoulders and zero puppy fat. Lock up your daughters, ladies, the Trog boys are on their way…..

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June 2012 body shape. Shrinkage evident.

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July 2012 body shape.

I was watching a programme on TV last night about two guys who were chefs, trying to lose weight. I found it a very frustrating watch. Their favourite meal was English breakfast – bacon, sausages, eggs, the works. They decided to try to make a ‘low fat’ version of the dish. I watched them as they took a pair of scissors and cut the fat off their bacon, sprayed the frying pan in sunflower oil (!) and poached their eggs instead of frying them. I wanted to scream “Nooooooo!”

I found myself wondering whether I was holding a secret that belonged to a tiny club of the world’s lucky few, or whether I was completely deluded about the benefits of Paleo. Is it me?

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August 2012 body shape. Looking better.

The most noticeable difference in the traditional dieting methods I was witnessing on TV and the Paleo lifestyle we’ve adopted was the fact that both guys were struggling with cravings. Preparing a steak sandwich for his son almost tipped one of them over the precipice, and they were constantly salivating at the idea of pies, bread and roast potatoes. Trog Dad and I, sat in front of the TV, exchanged a glance and both observed, “Wow, we don’t get any of that hunger stuff any more.”

Hell, something’s working here.

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We three.

CrossFit Feet

paleo crossfitMy feet.
They are 45 years old, just like the rest of me (funny that), and losing their charm.

Since beginning Crossfit, I have discovered pains and bodily malfunctions in all manner of places in which I didn’t realise you could hurt, and my feet have consistently been part of the torture.
I have (so they tell me) a Morton’s neuroma. This is apparently not the lead singer of A-Ha, but a nerve growth in the joint of my right foot. It hurts a lot. A very lot. A cortisone injection helped for a few weeks but now it hurts a lot again.paleo crossfit

I have also managed to damage the ligaments in the joint of the same foot. This means that my right foot is now misshapen, my toes won’t sit down flat and the middle one is constantly fat & swollen. Ugly feet truly suck and I am not happy.

So far I have tried to cushion the blow of relentless ‘double under-ing’ with:

1. A variety of footwear, including Converse, Running Shoes & Toners (the last of which my Crossfit coach asked me politely to burn and never wear to his gym again)
2. Trips to a Podiatrist, who happens to be an enormously attractive young man named Dan *sigh* (It does nothing for my feet, but does help an old lady get through the day)
3. Gel pads, toe guards and custom made insoles. Expensive, bulky and impractical. Unless I want one foot to look bigger than the other
4. Pain killers – a delightful interlude with the Fairies, but all too inadequate to cope with the collection of pains from other parts of my dilapidated body.

I have now invested in these new wheels. You likey? (They match my t-shirt, what of it?)

paloe crossfit

Anyway, I’m sure you’d like to know whether all this effort has paid off for my poor tootsies? Are they any better?

Hell no. They are worse than ever. God, I wish I was 25 again…..

Just 1lb of fat…

When I made my first trip to Crossfit I weighed in at 18st 10lb, the highest I have ever been, with a desire to be 15st (last achieved about 25 years ago!)

The lightest I have ever been as a fully grown man was 12st 13lb at 22, with time spent playing squash or working out most days.

Like most men I guess, my ability to loose weight quickly when I was young made me complacent, and see any weight gain as a ‘temporary’ thing that could be easily sorted by a couple of weeks exercise and a few less burgers…

As I got older I was starting to recognise the extra effort required each time, but work/ambition seemed to provide enough excuses to ignore the issues, and before I could say ‘”Christ, I’m 30″, I was up to 16st… by 40 this was 17st … and by 50, we hit the jackpot at 18st 10lb.

This week I weighed in at 16st 11lb, still a long way from my target of 15st, but just 1lb away from nailing my second stone. As you can see from the graph the loss has been steady at about 1lb a week which got me to thinking – just what does 1lb of fat look like and what effort is required to shift the little bugger!  The simple answer is 3500 calories or a calorie deficit of 500 calories per day (I know this is an over simplification…)

The Paleo diet is certainly working – because of injury and holiday I have been out of the gym for 4 weeks, but still maintaining my weight loss. The exercise is certainly increasing my metabolism and helping with tone (Frank even said I was developing a waist today… I do worry about him). I had thought by now it might start getting harder, but so far I am still on a steady 1lb a week.

It would be nice to be at 15st before Christmas so I may have to start turning up the exercise dial!