You can bet that the vast majority of diet-related advice is given to people that need to lose weight. I’m not going to do that because, in my situation, I feel that I need to gain weight. I need to gain muscle mass as my sedentary lifestyle of the past several years has led to a decreased size.
I’m sure it has more to do with my ego than anything else but considering a few short years ago I was at my heaviest weight of 225lbs and just this morning I weighed in at 169lbs. I know I fall right in the middle of a normal weight/height ration for a 6’ tall man, but it looks like a lot of my weight is centered on my abdominal region, which makes me “feel” fatter than I actually am.
I know it has a lot to do with my former weight but I just feel smaller than normal and I don’t like that feeling.
I’m still not sure what brought on this weight loss except for the fact that I’ve moved from the City of Chicago where there was a junk food restaurant, or 2, on every corner, to a rural town near Charleston, SC where I have lots of land to roam on and take care of and only a tiny fraction of fast food options.
That is a good thing I’m sure. I shouldn’t have been eating junk food at all. I have Type 2 diabetes which is mostly under control and I have Myasthenia Gravis, which is a form of MS that causes fatigue of the muscles. It’s an autoimmune neuromuscular disease that I’ve been dealing with for the past 10 years.
My Expectations for the Paleo Diet
What I like about this “diet” (it’s not really a diet it’s a lifestyle change) is that I don’t have to count numbers. The only numbers that matter to me are the numbers I get back from my blood tests.
I don’t have another blood test scheduled for 90 days so this is the perfect time to start recording what I’m doing and what changes I expect to occur.
- I want to gain about 11 lbs. I think 180lbs is a good goal to reach for in 90 days.
- I want more energy and I think that by avoiding processed foods and adding the Paleo-approved foods into my regular eating habits can get me there.
- I want to wean off of my cholesterol and blood pressure medications. These are normal additions to anyone taking medications for diabetes.
- I want to be able to reduce the mg’s of diabetic medication that I’m taking with the ultimate goal of an all natural solution to maintaining optimal glucose levels.
- I want to body sculpt my abdominal region as well as my thighs and biceps.
What I’m planning to do to reach these Expectations
- To gain weight I’m going to find the best meal options to provide a balance between the nutrition, vitamins, and minerals that I need to fuel my body and expected additional activities. This will be the most fun part but also probably the most expensive part of the lifestyle change as we all know good food isn’t cheap.
- I’ve learned that there are some Paleo approved foods that can help naturally boost energy levels. Avocados, eggs, blueberries, almonds, and coconuts to name a few but there are more and I’ll be researching and experimenting until I find the right combination.
- With the proper nutrition I’ll be gaining from the Paleo diet, I see no reason why I wouldn’t be able to stop taking statins for cholesterol and BP meds. Of course, I will not go off any of these meds until after I get the blood test results back and consult with my doctor.
- I’m not a “gym” person but I used to be in the Army and know exactly what I need to do to start sculpting the parts of my body that need it. Push-ups and sit-ups, dips, squats, and dumbbell lifts will be scheduled into my daily routine. I couldn’t pick a better time to get started on this considering that in 90 days we will be right in the early days of summer.
How I’ll keep on track
Peer support is the best option to keep with a healthy routine but like I said, I’m not a gym person so I will rely on my own self-discipline. I’ll also be posting a weekly update here, starting on next Friday which happens to be St. Patrick’s Day.
My 70-year-old dad lives with me and he seems to be on board with the new and improved food recipes. He’s been researching all sorts of meal plans since I started discussing it with him. He moved here from Chicago as well and he’s wanted more healthy choices too.
I have a couple acres here in SC and we’ll be spending more time exploring and improving the property which will be plenty of exercise for him and a great addition for me.
I’ve been reading, and taking notes, my copy of Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle and I would recommend it to anyone wanting to go Paleo. While I’m looking to put on weight and boost energy, most people follow the Paleo diet lifestyle to lose weight and feel great.
Feeling great is enough of a reward for me. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.