One of the very knowledgeable guys over on MDA just posted a very good explanation of what insulin does in your body, and I’d like to share it with you:

Insulin is a hormone that does many things. The important one for us here is that it tells the body to keep it’s fat stores and NOT release them to be used for energy. Insulin does this after eating carbs mostly (it’s released every time you eat, no matter what you’re eating, but carbs produce more insulin release than other foods, hence carbs being labeled as fattening)

So, eating less carbs causes less insulin release so there’s nothing to tell the body “hold on to your fat!” and it instead starts letting go of it which is what we want to happen.” — iniQuity

Makes sense, doesn’t it?

For more info, read

Published in: on January 25, 2011 at 2:53 pm  Comments (1)  

Day 24: Protein Pellets

Today was the best day I’ve had during the Whole30, relating to food specifically.  I found this great recipe for Protein Pellets over at The Clothes Make the Girl.

Protein Pellets

I altered the recipe a bit by using grass-fed ground beef instead of sausage because I’m on a mission to use up the 30+ pounds of grass-fed ground in the freezer.  Also, instead of using the Penzey’s spice she uses, I made two with Penzey’s Arizona Dreaming (freebie from December, woot!), two with Nutritional Yeast Flakes, and one with just ground pepper.  I have no idea which one I ate today, but I ate it with some of this, and it was beyond fantastic.  It was pretty tasty, but what made it fantastic was that it kept me satisfied and super-charged until lunch time.  Usually my stomach starts growling around 11am to alert me to the approach of feeding time, but not so today.  For lunch I had a salad (romaine lettuce, spinach, turkey breast, blueberries, flaxseed meal, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pepitas, green pepper, cucumber, tomatoes and radishes).  For dessert I had more blueberries.  For snacks in the afternoon I had beef jerky and fat guacamole devils (using just two hard boiled eggs and a 100 calorie Wholly Guacamole packet).  For dinner we had tilapia brushed with coconut oil and dusted with shredded coconut, pan-fried plantains in coconut oil, and swiss chard sauteed in olive oil.  Totals: 1455 calories, 83g Fat, 70 Carbs, 106g protein.  This is the closest I’ve gotten to my goals all month.  I have great energy!  If it was summer I would go out for a run right now, but it is too cold and I’m already in my lounge gear. Plus, it be cold outside.

If the two videos I’ve posted haven’t changed your life yet, take a read of this excellent article from Outside Magazine (thanks for the subscription Dad, I love this mag!)  This might just do it.


Published in: on January 24, 2011 at 8:05 pm  Comments (1)  

Part 2

Now that you’ve seen part one and made the first steps toward improving your life, here is part 2.

Published in: on January 22, 2011 at 3:11 pm  Comments (1)  

This sums it up

Published in: on January 21, 2011 at 9:47 am  Comments (2)  

Day 18 or something

I know. I know.  It’s been 12 days since my last confession.

While I do consider myself to still be following the Whole30 (for the most part), I’ve learned some very important things.

#1:  Alcohol makes me feel lethargic, fat and headachey.  My training suffers from alcohol.  That being said, I enjoy a glass of wine with a nice meal.  Thus, I have incorporated 1 to 2 glasses of wine per week back into my plan.  That is 1 or 2, not on the same night, not back to back days, and only if I feel like it.  No beer.  No Beam.  Beam may return after the 30 days, or it may not, beer will not.

#2: Dairy makes me phlegmy and heavy feeling.  Cheese and milk do not provide me with anything I need for my body to run efficiently.  They will not be returning after the 30 days.  Grass-fed butter will.

#3:  I can easily tell when something is made with sugar.  Chili at the ski race, dressing at the Detroit Brewery, if it is sweetened I can tell and it puts me off.  Also, everything is sweeter.  About the sweetest thing I can tolerate now is a prune — they rock, but I can only eat a few, too sweet.

#4:  Legumes make me feel incredibly bloated.  I won’t be adding those back in after the 30 days either.  Peanuts are legumes too, FYI.

I don’t really have anything to say about grains, because (besides beer) I removed all grains nearly a year and a half ago.

It helped to stop keeping track of the days on the blog and to focus on my body’s

C'est moi in the pink hat

reactions, thus my hiatus.  I was also training for the Frosty Freestyle, which took place last Saturday.  In case you missed it on Facebook, I finished 3rd over all and was the winner in 20-29 for the 5k women’s skate and 14th overall for men and women.  My goal is to do the 15k next year, and that is going to mean a lot of serious training in the coming year.


My current eating plan with my tweaks will be easy for me to maintain long-term.  I feel better than ever, stronger than ever in training and I’ve finally accomplished something I always wanted — to be able to look at food as a fuel.  I can finally consider a food for its value to my body.  I was skeptical that the Whole30 would “change my life”, but it has.

I hope your efforts to improve yourself are going as well as mine!

PS: the job is going well too 🙂


Published in: on January 18, 2011 at 10:26 pm  Comments (2)  

Day 6, Larabar discovery

Today is the day Larabars became an important part of my life.  I’d read in Whole30 discussions across the web that Larabars are Whole30 friendly, and I thought they might make my life a little easier.  So, while I was out running errands today, I stopped by Whole Foods and picked up a nice selection: Coconut Cream Pie, Carrot Cake, Apple Pie, Chocolate Coffee, Chocolate Mint, Chocolate and Banana Bread.  These bars do not contain added sugar of any kind, grains or flour.  In fact, they contain no unpronounceable ingredients.  I know I know.  You’re thinking “Yeah and they probably taste like something off of the forest floor…”  You couldn’t be more wrong!  I tried the Chocolate Mint today (remember my issue yesterday?) and it was fantastic!  Larabars will help make this month a little easier.  I do not intend to eat them everyday.  They are to be used only for special occasions and unbearable cravings.  Check them out for yourself here.  Larabar does not pay me any kind of endorsement fee, I just really love them!

Today was the beginning of my Pre-Weekend.  Since I work three days, Thursday and Friday are my weekend by myself where I get things done around the house and around town.  That way Nick and I can enjoy the actual weekend relaxing and having fun.  Unfortunately, I didn’t get that much done at home today because I spent the afternoon running errands.  I did shovel the driveway since we got a bit of snow earlier in the day and also cooked a rotisserie chicken (I saved the carcass, so stay tuned for a chicken bone stock recipe in the coming weeks!).

Fuel: nitrate-free bacon, coffee, pot roast, carrots, beef bone broth, Chocolate Mint Larabar, cherries, pistachios, ground lamb, squash, tomatoes, green beans, cinnamon, tea

Play: shoveled snow

Published in: on January 6, 2011 at 10:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

Day 5, Chocolate attack

In an attempt to quell my PMS chocolate attack, I went to the store and bought a bar of Dagoba Dark Chocolate.  The only ingredient in this bar of chocolate is “organic cacao beans”.  It tasted like poop.  I still want chocolate.

Fuel: hard boiled eggs, coffee, lettuce, green pepper, cucumber, tomato, walnuts, olive oil, vinegar, chicken breast, cauliflower, green beans, pork bone broth, ham, marrow, pecans, blueberries, tilapia, almonds, sweet potatoes, cinnamon, bacon fat, coconut oil, tea, chocolate poop

Play: I will tomorrow.  I swear…

Published in: on January 5, 2011 at 8:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

Day 4, Stick-blender love

I think I’m in love with my immersion blender — that’s “stick-blender” for the laymen 🙂  My three top uses are: creaming cauliflower, making soup and making applesauce.  Tonight I was really jonesing for something sweet, like a dessert.  The Whole30 says no to sugar of any kind, including Maple Syrup and Honey.  What is a girl to do?  A girl is to go into her stash of several-month-old apples in her fridge and whip up a delicious Whole30 concoction.  It doesn’t have a name, but if it did it would probably be “Apple Almond Butter Deliciousness that Saved my Sanity” or something like that.  I cored and sliced an apple, added some cinnamon and almond butter and then used my immersion blender to blend it all together.  C’est magnifique!  Even after 4 days, my tastebuds are adjusting and certain fruits taste almost as sickeningly sweet as a Costco cake (vomit) used to.

So, I’m not sure if I mentioned this before, but the new job is part-time, 24 hours per week.  That means that I work three 8-hour days.  Which means tomorrow is my Friday.  Happy “Friday” to me!

Fuel: coconut water, coffee, lettuce, cucumber, tomato, walnuts, avocado, olive oil, vinegar, garlic, green peppers, ham, ham bone stock, cauliflower, green beans, marrow, pecans, blueberries, apple, cinnamon, almond butter, sirloin tip steak, squash, carrots, bacon fat, coconut oil

Play: more filing… I need to re-evaluate my schedule to make time for real play…

Published in: on January 4, 2011 at 8:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Day 3, New job

I started the new job today and it was good!  It is always hard to be the new girl, but everyone is really nice.  The working environment is far more mentally healthy than my last job, thank goodness!  I’m exhausted from filing for 4 hours in heels, so I’ll keep this brief.  No more heels to work for me, I’ve learned my lesson.  I hate heels anyway.

Fuel: coffee, nitrate-free bacon, hard-boiled eggs, salt, pepper, cauliflower, green beans, ham bone broth, ham, marrow, lettuce, green pepper, tomatoes, cucumber, walnuts, avocado, oil, vinegar, chicken breast, green beans, squash, ground lamb, beef bone stock, onions, pecans, blueberries

Play:  I played in the files for 4 hours.

Published in: on January 3, 2011 at 7:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Day 2, Bones

Today was very busy, but very productive.  My wonderful brother-in-law, Chris and sister-in-law, Jenny were kind enough to let me take the ham bone from the Christmas ham.  Today I made Primal “Split Pea” soup and it is wonderful!  I can’t recall ever having split pea soup before — the idea of it always kind of turned me off and I’ve recently decided that I’m irritated by peas (mentally).  I was ecstatic to find the Primal “Split Pea” soup recipe (post #8) because it does not have peas (don’t forget to scoop out the marrow from the bone, there isn’t much, but it is worth it!)

Primal "Split Pea" soup

While that was cooking I threw a chuck roast from Bessie (our grass-fed cow) into the crockpot with some carrots.  This roast had a big ‘ole bone through it and she wouldn’t fit in the crockpot, so I had to de-bone her.  I figured I’d turn this into bone day and put the roast bone and some steak bones I’d been saving in the freezer into the oven to roast and then make stock.  I roasted the bones for about 40 minutes in a 375 degree convection oven, then put 12 cups of water in a stock pot with the bones, celery, carrots, a cauliflower stump, apple cider vinegar and some spices and let it cook all day.  Once dinner time rolled around, I used some of the stock to make a gravy for the roast (no flour, of course!) and it was delicious!  If you’d like to read more about the benefits of making your own stock and some instructions, go here.

Other than that, I did laundry, ironed work clothes for tomorrow (1st day of the new job!), prepped the coffee and made lunches.  I’m finally settled down with a cup of my favorite tea and hoping to hit the sack early tonight.  I want to be fresh and on my game to meet my new co-workers.  I hope everyone has a great Monday and I’ll report back tomorrow night!

Fuel: coffee, nitrate-free bacon, egg, pepper, ham, cauliflower, green beans, celery, carrots, onions, salt, marrow, beef chuck roast, arrowroot, beef stock, blueberries, pecans, tea

Play: None — didn’t have time!

Published in: on January 2, 2011 at 8:06 pm  Comments (1)