Finding YOU in Paleo

*Note from Sarah: Here’s another blog from Lisa as she chronicles her Paleo Journey.  Lisa now has her own Facebook Page so please head over and visit her there as well!

Finding YOU in Paleo…

I must confess, it took me almost 30 day just to figure out how Paleo was going to work best for me. That’s ok, I am not one to back down from a logical challenge, I may need time to figure out a game plan, but I won’t walk away.

As I sat and thought about things, the new foods, cooking from scratch, fighting sugar cravings, food sensitivities, making sure there was a warm meal on the table every night, wanting to feed my family like they were Paleo kings. The list goes on, I realized I was searching for Paleo perfection, and became overwhelmed. I would say to myself “Come on, step it up how hard can this be.”

I was comparing myself to all the quick, stumble free success stories I had heard about, the problem was I was stumbling; I did have obstacles in the way. Aside from the ones I mention above, It was hard to retrain my thoughts, I was not dropping weight by the ton, I was tired, run down and weak from autoimmune issues, the same issues that made me have to figure out how to tweak the original Paleo plan to better suite me.

I have always been the typical type A personality. You know the one, do something 100% or don’t do it at all. I quickly realized putting these types of expectation and demands on myself was definitely setting me up for failure. Part of me began to wonder, did I want to fail? Then I could say once again, “See something else did not work, it’s not me it’s the plan!” I could go back to eating what I wanted and remain in my comfort zone. As weird as it sounds, I am pretty sure (or at least hope) some of you can relate to that thought process.

Over the years I have tried tons and tons of diet plans and lifestyle changes, none stuck. I just could not make them become a lifestyle, they were quick fixes. They were too restricting or time consuming, and with all the counting and weighing you had to do for some just to eat, well, I was tired before I even ate!!

As much as I wanted to find a reason Paleo was also not going to work, I couldn’t. I looked high and low, journaled pages and pages of the pros and cons of Paleo, and guess what, I came up with NOTHING. In my opinion there were no cons or holes to be found, just good old fashion natural whole fruits, veggies, healthy fats and proteins. There was no reason this would not work for me, autoimmune issues or not.

I put everything aside and said to myself, “Ok Lisa, you don’t have to follow the plan the way the lady down the street does”. Take the facts of paleo and make it yours” (yes I confess, I talk to myself)

So the next step was to figure that out, how was I going to makes this work for ME. I had to come to peace with the fact that at this point I was dealing with overwhelming fatigue and cooking was not a place I opted to use my energy, I had become a “lazy cook”.

In the past I loved to cook, love food and love to eat and always have (and thanks to Paleo, I do again). However; this time around, I was building up my immune system, my strength, and up until not long ago (again, thanks to Paleo) fighting daily fatigue from years of undiagnosed hashimoto and celiac (I had full blown symptoms of both for over 4 years before I finally found a wonderful GP who would listen to me and finally dx me, talk about stress on your body and mind. I will save that story for another time) I had to except the fact that I was just too tired, wiped out and drained to become Mrs. Chef Boyardee.

So, I gathered all the information I had researched, took out what few autoimmune stimulating foods where in the standard Paleo lifestyle and a few others I noticed that did not work well for me, combined it with what demands and priorities I was comfortable putting on myself, and where I was willing to use my energy in the day (having two children, a cat, dog, 4 hamsters and a husband, you can figure that one out..lol) and I finally felt in control.

I had mastered a Paleo plan that was all mine, and you know what it felt great. It felt great being ok with being ME!!! I was not being told how many points I could have that day, or which boxed meal I was to crack open and at what time. It was mine, I was in control. And for the first time in a million years, ok not that many, but in a long time, it was nice to finally except myself and the place I was in, mind, body and soul.

I have said it before and I will say it again, that’s the wonderful part of Paleo it is about finding what works for you.

If it were not for this Paleo journey with Sarah and Everyday Paleo, I would have never been blessed finding this great comfort spot, the one away from food, and within myself. I realized I needed to be comfortable with me, and where I was with my health at the time.

Paleo is not a cookie cutter plan, or a quick fix, it is a life time of health and it might take some time to figure out where YOU need to start and where YOU want to go, but that’s ok, YOU are worth it and once you do, trust me you will feel empowered, in control and amazing. You will have found YOU!!!

PS for you “lazy cooks” a crockpot is an awesome investment.

ENJOY

Until next time, much peace and happiness

Lisa

Comments

  1. says

    Great article. That is something I tell myself all the time… You have to make it work for you! (i talk to myself too). If you don’t, failure is inevitable. Not one person is the same, therefore you should not compare yourself to others. Just do you! Make it for you…i like that.

  2. Tanika Connesero Sanchez says

    I just want to say thanks for sharing your story with all of us. I feel the same way. I am trying to do it, but I am struggling with how to make it my own and how to make it work with my demands and energy level…I am sure that sooner than later I will get it down and figure out how to make it work for me and my family.

  3. Deckmom says

    Thank you for this post, Lisa! I, too, am struggling with Hashimoto’s and have been trying to make Paleo mine for three months now. I am still fighting the sheer exhaustion as well and thought there was something wrong with me. Everyone else was saying they felt better within the first two weeks! Now, I know it may take me some time.

  4. Debbie says

    I just started my Paleo Challenge today. I’m very excited and more so now that I have read your article. Thank you Lisa! I feel even more encouraged!!

  5. Kristin Weinstock says

    I would really love to hear what you did in place of cooking. I am a full-time student and mommy, and there are too many demands on my time for me to put a hot, healthy meal on the table every night for dinner. I do love my crockpot, but guess I haven’t come across enough recipes that I know my family will eat. What other suggestions do you have?

  6. Katherine says

    Brilliant update :). I think if it took you 30 days to figure it out, that’s pretty awesome. It took me nearly 18 months of battling to realise low carb wasn’t going to work for me, and tweak by adding in carbs. And even then I kidded myself white rice and other white “safe starches” would work for me, when I know full well from pre-paleo days that I can only tolerate wholegrains. So now I am doing Weston Price style wholefoods and feeling a lot better. Turns out the “autoimmune issues” I was trying to fix by going paleo, are actually not autoimmune issues anyway lol, after 16 years of being sick I got my diagnosis, so I can breathe easy and not worry too much about needing to add in some wholegrains, and will be getting some physiotherapy for the condition I actually do have, and hopefully will be on the up very soon. Keep at it and keep posting :).

    • Lisa says

      Katherine, Thank you so much. Everyone’s support here has been so wonderful. Sara and all here followers are super amazing at showing the love.
      I am so glad you are getting things figured out for YOU. Cause in the end thats all that matters.

  7. says

    I totally relate with you. I’m also the do it 100% or don’t do it at all type person. With Paleo, my approach has been, doing some is better than doing nothing at all. While I may not be strict Paleo, I’ve listened to my body and how it reacts to what I feed it. Since making the transition to Paleo, my body has felt exponentially better and I’ve discovered a new love for the kitchen. Is it just me or does food taste better when you cook it yourself? Thanks for being an inspiration to listen to your body and do what feels right.

  8. Jamie says

    Lisa, I can not even tell you how desperately I needed to hear that today. I had been going strong with Paleo for about 3 weeks, when a routine well child visit with my daughter and our wonderful naturopath sent me spinning off in a bad direction. My daughter has had severe GI issues her entire life, and I felt that she was thriving and doing well now, but it turns out that she may have Fructose Mal-absorption. We were living off of fruits and veggies, and she began having these terrible side effects and I just felt so disheartened. I dropped Paleo for a week out of sheer mental exhaustion and SO many of my own autoimmune reactions came back. My other daughter has food allergies, and its like for all of us to eat the same thing its down to chicken and cucumbers (not fully, but that’s how I felt) After reading this, I realized that ya, one kid can’t have coconut or almond flour, and the other has to be gluten free, but what they both can do is small amounts of rice flour. Rice flour isn’t Paleo, but we have to make this work for us in a way that is livable within our restrictions. People with autoimmune diseases don’t fit into typical boxes anyways, and I needed to remind myself of that and give myself grace, and recognize that what is important is my children are still growing and thriving. I also have to give myself room and space to grieve for the life that I thought we were going to have, and then I will fully be able to embrace the new one. Thank you so much for your post, it was a desperately needed word!

    • Lisa says

      Jamie, I can totally relate. In a past post, I stated that at the same time I was diagnosed with both hashimoto and Celiac, both my children where diagnosed with celiac too. I remember standing in the grocery store isle crying, cause I did not even know where to start. It felt like my whole world shattered. But I am here to tell you it gets easier. As Sarah mentioned, please visit my new facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Autoimmune-Paleo-and-YOU/336397593072920?ref=tn_tnmn
      Everyone there is dealing with some sort of autoimmune disease.
      Feel free to PM me there too. I really want to help you.

  9. Cheryl says

    This post was shared with me by a friend who knew I needed some encouragement. I certainly found it here. I’m sort of the perfectionist who lives in chaos because I’m always waiting to do things “the perfect way”. I did very well with my first two weeks of Paleo using the Everyday Paleo book but when I had trouble getting pasture-fed beef and a few more ingredients I just stopped doing anything and fell back into my old eating habits. Now I am struggling to start again but hoping this time to have the attitude that even if ALL my choices can’t be the right ones that at least I can make SOME good choices and build on those choices. Hearing about the serious health issues so many people have (sick children really pulls at my heart strings) has also made me realize how blessed I am. Thanks for a wonderful place to visit…I hope to be back often.:)

  10. April says

    Yay for you for making it and most importantly for finding your way to feeling better!!
    After your great detail and build up, I was really hoping to read the same detail in your “resolution” (diet). As someone very new to Paleo but with improved (not complete) health through diet, I crave (*intended pun*:) other’s specifics in the early days of a diet change to help in my own journey/personalization.
    Again, congratulations on your success!

  11. Sam says

    I like this post I am former raw vegan now something like paleo, I write something cause I drink raw goat or sheep homemade real kefir from kefir grains(highly recommend to everyone) also I eat raw butter(I think it is healthier than bacon) and raw goat or sheep cheese for vitamin K2. I think paleo can be healthy and can be less healthy too(when you add salami proccess meat sausage soe bacon etc.) So I think I have found my healthiest way I do not eat any bacon or process meat I eat organic salmon 4 times a week I eat only grass fed lamb or beef and not every day only that time I do not have fish. I eat organic pastured eggs and drink raw goat or sheep kefir. Also I keep my greens high and drink green juice every day and have big salad every day. How are you doing with fruit? I still can find myself with fruit I mean when I was vegan I ate 4-6pieces of fruit a day now I know that fructose is not as good for me so I limit to 1(berries) or none serving. Some of nutritionist suggest to eat fruit on empty stomach some of them suggest to eat it with meal to prevent insuline spike

    • Lisa says

      Sam, that is awesome. I have never been a big fruit eater. But when I do have fruit, it is usually berries or green apples. Usually the reason to eat fruit on an empty stomach or before a meal is because it digest so quickly. So if you eat it after a meal it cant pass fast enough to digest and therefore gets stuck and bloats you.

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