Paleo Success: Confessions of a Junk Food Junkie

19 Sep

First of all, this challenge, like most things in life, wasn’t easy. As a typical creature of habit, I have grown to enjoy my daily bad habits, so to initiate change required a little extra help from friends, coaches and family. This started off as a simple “Challenge” and it has hopefully morphed into something more permanent. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not a “hug-a-tree, newly converted paleo, saltless, grass-fed eating diet groupie”, I just think this made me finally think about what I was putting into my body and WHY.

Typical Story:
During my teens and twenties, swimming 10-20K a day, I could and did eat (& drink) everything in sight. During my 30′s, it took a little extra effort, but I still managed to hang on to some semblance of what I thought was fitness. I was a simple weekend-warrior and over-training kept me in the non-obese category, but nutritionally, it was starting to catch up. Everything was dandy until that magic age of 40-something. For those of you not there yet, Just Wait!

The Challenge:
DAY ONE: Put your scale in the closet and throw/give away all of the junk food in your house and vow not to buy anymore.
Week 1: I ate seemingly everything (paleo) in sight and actually think I gained weight.
Week 2 This was the toughest week, the excitement of the challenge begins to wear off, work, family and your typical stressors resurface – hang on and push through.
Week 3 and 4: Happy Days — My clothes start to get baggier and I start having some very good Work Out days.
At the End of Week 4, I had to travel for Work and this was a total disruption – Call it a Rest or Recovery week. I just tried not to loose what I had gained. In retrospect, this was a needed and good mental break.
Weeks 5 and 6: Came back home excited to get back to a real routine. My energy level seemed to get higher during this period and I was able to get in multiple workouts several times per week. This is probably when my weight started to drop significantly.

45 days later, I stepped on the scale and ended up some 18+ pounds lighter and less 6 inches (chest, waist and hips) and now under 15% body fat.

FIT-TEST Time via the Bench Mark Bash:

Part One – “Severin”: 50 strict pull-ups, 100 hand release push-ups and then a 5K RUN, all in all you get to torture yourself for about 35 minutes, all while wearing a TWENTY POUND weight vest. Simply put, trying to run with a twenty Pound Vest Sucks! A month and half ago, its hard to imagine that was my daily weight! Needless to say, upon completion of the WOD, I was very happy to drop that 20 lbs onto the floor.
Part Two – Weighted Pull-up & Dip Combo and after dropping the extra luggage that I was lugging around, I was able to get total 120% of my new weight.

With my historic, horrid junk food habits, if I can do it, anyone who wants to can! A Huge Mahalo goes out to our CrossFit Oahu Coaches (you know who you are), the next chapter is to get back to the fitness I had in my Twenties, who said getting old has to suck ?

Mike Bennett

  • About Courtney Johnson

    Courtney Johnson is one of the original (2006) CFO members and has been coaching for over 4 years. She is also a Registered Dietitian and has special "Paleo" powers. When not at the gym, "Coco" enjoys the beach, reading, volunteering and the island life.
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