Paleo Day 25: Listening To My Body

Wednesday, June 25, 2014–After the last two days of running hot, both with work and exercise, I was supposed to plow into today with still more of the same.  In the end I could feel that wasn’t the right thing to do.  Rather than power through with my plan as if it was etched on stone tablets I decided to dial things back and give my body some restoration time.

The morning was supposed to be begin before 6 am.  That was going to be wake up and head to the gym before work time.  The alarm certainly went off, and I roused up to turn it off.  Since it is just my FitBit band vibrating I didn’t have to get up or worry about it waking my partner.  But as I craned my head to start getting of bed my body felt achy and my head felt like I had a mild to medium hang over.  I had brain fog.  I had a dull headache.  I just felt meh.  Keep in mind the extent of my drinking yesterday was a glass of red wine at dinner and I hydrated well before bed.  With the reminder that my thighs were feeling a bit tight after yesterday’s workout I decided to not snooze but to just go back to bed and skip my run, declaring it a free day.

I have a training plan laid out all the way through the end of November.  For many people that exercise regularly and trying to get to a certain goal they try to stick to the plan religiously.  There is something good about using that when your brain is telling you that you are too tired to go to the gym but you aren’t too tired to sit around and watch a movie while eating a bowl of ice cream or popcorn.  I like to think of that as fighting Newton’s Law.  Bodies in motion tend to stay in motion and bodies at rest tend to stay at rest.  When your body has been doing nothing for years or decades, like mine has, it wants to stay like that.  Any little excuse therefore is the boulder you need in your path to turn around and go back to the good old days of not working out and just vegging out.

However that doesn’t mean you should ignore more acute signs.  When you’ve been through enough of these cycles you can sort of tell when your mind is being lazy versus your mind telling you that your body needs some recovery time.  Recovery is when your body rebuilds and gets stronger, not while you are exercising.  If you don’t have enough you can dig your body into a pretty deep hole that you can’t get out of very easily.  I look forward to avoiding that as much as avoiding injuries, which also come from not listening to your body.  So after a day of rest and good nutrition I figured I would be able to hit the ground running again.

After I woke up over an hour later I started doing some work on the computer as I tried to shake the cobwebs out.  I cracked open a Bai energy drink to wire myself up a bit.  Due to the last few days of sleep deprivation I needed the caffeine jolt.  That fact irritates me and I intend to fix it shortly, but that’s where I am right now.  I wasn’t especially hungry so breakfast was just a banana.  I knew I had a big lunch coming a bit before noon.

After a half day of work I headed home before heading up to do some stuff with my family in the afternoon.  I had another one of these giant Calcium Supplement salads.  It was lettuce and kale again but this time with carrots, jicama an heart of palm.  I finished off the rest of the sardines from yesterday.  I always thought I would have a problem overcoming their fishiness.  These wild sardines packed in water pretty much just taste like canned tuna, but they are a lot better for you and more sustainable than tuna is.  Rather than oil and vinegar I decided to try to make a dressing with almonds, vinegar and lemon juice in my high speed blender.  The consistency was fine but the flavor left a bit to be desired.  I will be experimenting around with this before reporting on an actual recipe, for certain.  While the salad was tasty, it was just way too much food for lunch.  I therefore left half of it for dinner.  The upshot of all these salads, plus drinking some mineral water, is that I have exceeded my daily RDA/DV Calcium intake for the second day in a row.

After spending time with my family I drove back home, the whole time chomping down on carrots and grape tomatoes.  Dinner was a Rainbow Sushi roll with the rest of the salad from this afternoon. Yes, I had rice two days in a row now.  I’ll be abstaining from it for the rest of the week if I have any say in the matter.  I’ll just have to get my carbs from sweet potatoes or some of the soups I have saved up in the freezer.  As to the salad, I had left it in the fridge and it definitely needed more liquid.  I also needed some more calories so I put a good amount of olive oil on top along with a little vinegar to liven it up.

The night finished up hanging out with an out of town friend sipping on a couple of glasses of some white wine.  Even without exercising my calorie balance is way off on the low side again.  I don’t mind that in the short term but overall but over the long term I don’t want it to get me into metabolic trouble.  I would like to try to get it up with something other than sweet potatoes, or even worse rice.  I’ll have to experiment with some additional oil or protein sources or maybe eating more throughout the day.  I guess along with weight loss from avoiding carbs, thus shedding a lot of water weight, there is the intrinsic problem of needed to work to get enough calories in your body in the first place.  That’s a good problem to have if you are trying to lose weight, but not one if you are trying to maintain and build up your muscle mass.