Oh yes, my friends, welcome back to The Boyfriend Chronicles! For those of you new to this here blog, The Boyfriend Chronicles are a monthly installment written by, you guessed it, my boyfriend, Will. He takes over Fitful Focus for the day to talk about his adventures dating a health, fitness, and food blogger, as well as whatever the heck he wants to talk about I suppose – except how much he wants a cow splatter rug. We are not getting a cow splatter rug….
Anywhooo without further ado:
Hello again fit and focused friends of Fitful Focus. I’d like to interrupt your normally scheduled Boyfriend Chronicles to write about something new that’s taking place in my life right now… a diet – a 3-month Paleo diet to be exact – the first diet of my life (getting old sucks, btw).
To those of you in the dark about the Paleo diet, let’s take a look. In its truest form, the idiot doing this diet, i.e. me, eats nothing that our hunter gatherer ancestors wouldn’t have eaten. This means no bread, no beer :(, no processed food, no cheese or dairy and no legumes. I’ve decided to take the modified Paleo diet approach by allowing myself to eat some steel cut oats once a day for carbs, a protein shake or two during the day and rice once a week in the form of a salmon and avocado sushi roll.
The idea behind this diet came over the holidays as I sat shirtless at my parents’ place with a bucket of sugar cookies in my lap, beer in hand, cookie crumbs pasted to my vacation beard, watching tv, trying not to be frenched by the dog who was trying to butter me up for some of those cookies.
And to the ladies who don’t like vacation beards, I say this – think of them as guy insurance because no other lady is going to pick up your dude while he’s growing a vacation beard. You’re welcome, gentlemen. Let it grow.
Anyway, while that description may be a slight exaggeration, the dog really was trying to make out and I did eat way more cookies than any normal human should – driving me to the…uhhh… brilliant(?) idea of starting a my first ever diet.
I’ve seen people diet my whole life, and they always make it look so easy – so in my mind this wasn’t a big deal. Since then, I’ve come to the realization that thinking, “it’s no big deal” is an easy thought to have when you haven’t started dieting yet. In considering my options for said diet, I finally settled on Paleo because it will should allow me to continue building muscle at the gym (I pick things ahhp, and poot them daownnn) while also burning the fat that may or may not have accumulated from those cookies I mentioned earlier. Whether muscle actually builds is yet to be seen. In the event that part of it is a flop, I’ve taken to perfecting the technique of standing cross-armed so my biceps look bigger than they actually are.
Regardless, I’m just starting my second week and it has been quite the adventure so far. First, I’ve learned that there are a number of stages to dieting. The first stage I would think is common to most diets, and that is excitement. In my case, I was excited to get this show on the road and start leading a healthier lifestyle for a few months. I was totally over the beer and cookies from the holidays, even though they were delicious.
The second and third stages of my diet, anger and exhaustion, came in close succession on Monday (day 1). The unjustified anger set in right around 4:30pm on Monday, just in time for the gym. A short run and the first day of a new workout plan quickly readjusted my attitude before being consumed by utter exhaustion. My body was running on all natural foods for the first time ever and had some serious slack to pick up. My Monday lunchtime staple, a grande Chai latte from Starbucks, had been replaced by 24 almonds and an apple…. dropping my blood sugar faster than gas prices went down. Holy headache. The conversation on the car ride home is a tail light filled blur, but I made it home safe (and parallel parked), ate dinner and struggled to stay awake before finally doing some mental math and deciding there was a 104% chance I was going to die and falling asleep early.
The fourth stage came to me during lunch on Thursday, when I seriously thought to myself, “this is ok, I like this broccoli in my salad.” I’m not entirely sure what the f*&# I was thinking at the time, so I’m going to label this stage euphoria/delirium. I have since come to my senses and realized there are other things I can eat for nutrition besides raw broccoli in an already healthy salad, but really, what dormant part of my brain did that thought come from?
The final stage I reached this past week was that of fearful acknowledgement. I can’t say that I’ve reached the point of acceptance yet, but I have at least started to understand the discipline that is going to be required to make this diet a success. And as somebody who is doing this for the first time, I have nothing but respect for those of you who have dieted before.
As an engineer who has long admired the craftsmanship and development of airplanes, I have this strong desire to compare dieting to flying a plane. There are a lot of things that need to happen in a very definitive order before you take off in NY and land in Costa Rica. The detox stages I’ve described above are all necessary to get you to cruising altitude, or the acceptance and embrace of what you’re doing. I’m hoping I reach cruising altitude soon so that the next few months roll past quickly and take some of my gut with them. And I suspect that as the end date of the diet gets closer, the temptations will grow again and the cravings will start to come back…. but one step at a time. I haven’t even gotten to the acceptance stage.
Does the acceptance stage actually exist?
If so, how do I make it come faster?
Does anyone really like raw broccoli?