highlights

Week #6 & #7 6-Pack (Abs) Project (and Primal Blueprint Reboot) 

Howdy and Welcome March! 

Hopefully March will bring lots of snow for two reasons  1) This is our last month to ski and snowboard and  2) We need more snow for groundwater so that we can have campfires galore this summer in the new fire pit at home, and while out camping!  

The second of these two weeks marks my husband, Andy, and I's start to the Primal Blueprint reboot, which is eating a max of around 100-150 carbs per day to ween our bodies off of carb dependancy.  It’s pretty crazy what we can still eat on this plan and stay within the carb limits, and we have experimented with some great recipes in the new reboot book (https://www.amazon.com/Keto-Reset-Diet-Metabolism-Forever/dp/1524762237)

I decided not to follow the daily diet schedule in the book.  It’s a lot of planning way in advance for ingredients we need, and after 6 weeks of eating low sugar and low carb, plus extensive conversations with my girlfriend Katti in Texas about the Keto plan, I feel confident enough to prepare meals that I think fit the criteria of being Keto friendly.  For those of you curious what we’ve been eating, I will get into that more below. 

First, lets talk abs! 

WORKOUTS 

Okay, so I'm still not at the 6-pack mark, and although 7 weeks ago I would have thought that I would be there by now, it's totally fine by me that I am not.  I enjoy the workouts and like seeing my my body transition during this phase - there's a great sense of accomplishment! 

It would be hard to tell you exactly what I do for abs workouts each day.  I had a friend text me the other night asking what workouts I am doing with Spring approaching.  The answer - I am doing a lot of different workouts and blending my ab routine into kettle bell exercises, cable machine moves, using the Bosu, stability balls, medicine balls, and incorporating more planks than I have ever done before!!  Targeted ab workouts are around 8-10 minutes and include a lot of repetitions.  I am so used to the ab workouts that instead of wanting to quit after 3 minutes, I transition into the next move when I feel sore, and keep on movin'!  

GOING PRIMAL 

The Primal Blueprint and "Keto plan" involves eating a high fat, moderate protein, and low carb diet.  After a couple of weeks of the reboot, and when we are no longer carb dependent, we'll train our genes to burn fat and ketones instead of sugar as our primary fuel source.  When in a full on ketosis state, we'll consume just 50-100 grams of carbs per day (a highly active person may consume more carbs than this and still be in a ketosis state).  For the sake of the reboot we are on now, we are allowed 100-150 grams per day.  Are we counting carbs?  Not exactly.  But we are no longer consuming breads, grains, starches, and sugary sweets, and feel really good about that.  There are times that we want something chocolaty and I have been looking for easy recipes using 100% unsweetened baking cacao that will satisfy those cravings. 

FOOD DIARY - A TYPICAL DAY EATING PRIMAL

Breakfast (my favorite meal of the day!) - I used to love english muffins with peanut butter and agave on top, or french toast with eggs and pure maple syrup (can you say, hello carbs!!!), but now I love eating omelets each morning. You can make them different every day and they never get old! 

Omelet favorite - Sautéed red bell pepper, onion, garlic, with diced bacon and shredded monterey jack cheese.  I use 2 eggs in my omelets but for a person with a large appetite 3 eggs might be the ticket.  They are big omelets with just 2 eggs and very filling!  

Lunch - I used to eat a sandwich or panini (it stinks that I got a panini maker for myself for Christmas!).  Panini’s are fun to make and taste delicious!  Andy would usually break the chips out at lunch, and I would eat too many of those and feel guilty after.  In the afternoon I would feel tired and sluggish from the carb bender, but not anymore!  Now I eat a “Bigass salad” (no really, that’s what he calls it in the book!), without the mid afternoon lull.

"Bigass salad" favorite - Mixed greens with a kale mix from Tassinong Farms in CB South.  I dice the greens up small, and sometimes add spinach.  I top each of my salads differently based on what’s in the fridge.  Favorite salad toppings include: feta cheese crumbles, sunflower seeds, a few dried cranberries, diced carrots, bell peppers, cucumber, hard-boiled egg, almond slivers or walnuts (or some other nut).  I top the salad with diced chicken that is prepared at the beginning of the week (it's so easy when you don't have much time).  Unfortunately, all salad dressings we have in the fridge are not keto-friendly, and so we drizzle with avocado oil and then I add some ripe peach white balsamic vinegar that we purchase every fall at Orchard Valley Farms in Paonia, CO.  It is an unreal oil and vinegar mix!  I might try red wine vinegar one of these days but haven’t gotten there yet.  The ripe peach is so incredible! 

Dinner - I used to pick healthy choices that didn’t include high carb content, well except for my all-time favorite, which is pizza (which we would eat at least one time per week). 

Dinner favorite - Dinners include a healthy protein like salmon, or pork, but since going low-carb there's no longer is jasmine rice or sweet potato on our plates.  We are starting to bake/cook different vegetables which has been, well…yummy!  A couple of nights ago we roasted carrot “fries” in the oven, tossed with melted coconut oil, salt and pepper (oven temp 400, cook for 20-30 min depending on desired firmness).  They were delicious!  We prepared asparagus on a skillet for 5-10 minutes with just olive oil and salt and pepper.  Both of these veggies are outside of our norm for dinner, and they did not disappoint.  The salmon was seasoned similar to the asparagus but with a lemon wedge drizzled over the top just before eating. 

NUTS ON NUTS (YUP-YOU HEARD ME RIGHT!)

Most nuts, except for peanuts, are allowed on the Keto plan, and as we have been stocking the cupboards with healthy nuts to snack on I have been researching which are on the 'nice list' and which the 'naughty list' as far as being “keto-friendly”.  Here is an excellent resource to see for yourself - low-carb nuts - https://www.dietdoctor.com/low-carb/keto/nuts

To add insult to injury (and because this plan includes eating as much butter as you like), I made buttered pecans this week (https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/sea-salt-roasted-pecans-233690)!  For the record, I know that it might sound weird to make buttered pecans, but I promise if you make them you will not be sorry - they are un-freaking-real)! 

WEEK 6 & 7 HIGHLIGHTS

1)  The scale.  I am burning fat and losing lbs, and that makes me and my scale happy.  Although I don’t have an actual 6-pack (yet) my core is very strong and you can see more definition and muscle in other areas of my body.  I like the exercises I am doing and the time I am spending strength training at CB South Fitness.  I’ve never worked out hard and consistent like this in my entire life, and seeing there results makes it even more motivating!  

2)  In preparation for a trip to the sunshine state next week with my kiddo, I dug my bathing suit out of storage, and dusted off the cobwebs.  Trying on a bathing suit in March and not having anxiety when looking in the mirror is a wonderful feeling.  I was actually impressed and excited by what I saw!  I was always the girl in high school and college that waited until a few weeks before a spring break vacation to hit the gym and see what I could do to improve my appearance before beach time.  It usually resulted in losing a little weight, however it was always a short term solution, and typically I would gain it back on vacation or soon after returning home.  Fifteen to twenty years ago, I HATED lifting weights.  Lifting weights scared and intimidated me.  Silly, right?  I usually did cardio, stretching and ab workouts. 

WEEK 6 & 7 CHALLENGES

1)  Several months back I developed a ganglion cyst on the back of my left wrist.  Just this week I finally looked it up to research what was going on.  I had one of these cysts in the same spot many years ago, and it went away after time.  Right now, it only hurts only when I am doing push-ups, stability ball tucks, or anything with a lot of flection in my wrist.  You will see in some of the photos below that I am using dumbbells for my grip certain exercises, and they help so much!  I'm applying frankincense essential oil directly to my wrist, a warm cloth and other natural remedies to help it heal. 

2) We went to CB’s “Crafted” event on Saturday.  It was a great afternoon but very hard to know what to eat and drink that was safe during our reboot.  We drank the yummy wine of local wine vendors (knowing nothing about their carb or sugar content) and had a little beef chili and pulled pork and coleslaw on a plate (hold the bun please!).  It was fun to get out and mingle but from an eating aspect I couldn't help but feel guilty.  Essentially, we have much more control over what we ingest when we prepare meals at home, and I have a lot less guilt about it! 

3)  I'm cutting dairy out for a bit.  In the Primal Blueprint reboot the author Mark Sisson includes dairy in his recipes, but I think I am going to cut dairy out for a week and see if I feel additional benefits in the diet.  Dairy causes inflammation in most people, and I recently saw something that reminded me of this.  Although I do not drink milk, we love cheese when cooking or snacking, and on occasion I eat greek yogurt as well.  I'm wondering if cutting gluten as well as dairy will have more of an accelerated impact on my waistline.  I guess time will tell!  

WRAP UP 

Okay, time to say goodbye.  I will write again next week after being dairy free for a week.  This will be hard, but after the last 7-weeks of no ice cream and pizza, I can do anything.  ;) 

Have a great week all!  

-Kristin 

Sprint intervals - I hated them the first time I did them and LOVE them now!  There are so many great benefits to HIIT! 

Sprint intervals - I hated them the first time I did them and LOVE them now!  There are so many great benefits to HIIT! 

stability ball tucks #2.JPG
Morning coffee with a sprinkle of cinnamon. 

Morning coffee with a sprinkle of cinnamon. 

Skiin' with dad! 

Skiin' with dad! 

Hello muscles!  There are stability ball tucks using dumbbells to support my wrists. 

Hello muscles!  There are stability ball tucks using dumbbells to support my wrists. 

stability ball tucks #1.JPG
Skiing with the family.  This was Keiran's first day up Red Lady chairlift and he was so excited! 

Skiing with the family.  This was Keiran's first day up Red Lady chairlift and he was so excited! 

Abs at the end of week 7. 

Abs at the end of week 7. 

 

Week #3: The 6-Pack (Abs) Project

I just completed week #3 of the 6-Pack Project and I'm feeling great!  I haven’t really shared much about the actual changes I am seeing, how I am feeling, and the motivation to keep it all going. I will do that now and add some photos below. :) 

Results

I am seeing results, and it’s a huge motivator!  Week 3 has been exciting, actually. After ab workouts I can see at least 4 of my abs poking through, and the rest is certainly becoming toned.  The old me would have eaten so poorly throughout the day that there was no way (and I mean no way) that I would see my ab muscles in the evening. I had more of a pregnant looking belly than a sexy trim waistline.  I LOVE sweets people, and nighttime I was at my absolute worst when it came to eating! 

Compliments now include that my shoulders are looking leaner in weekly group training at CB South Fitness, my waist is visibly looking “trim”, I'm not bloated and can wear tight shirts for my workout without feeling self-conscious, and my spandex are getting lose in the lap area.  Bonus - my thighs are thinning out too!  I have lost almost 5 lbs of fat, and it's still coming off!  You have no idea how great it felt to send my husband a photo of my abs after a 10pm, 8 minute abs session (he was out of town) and to get the response back “dang babe!”.  Talk about put this girl on a high! 

What’s great about this diet is that I have very few moments where I feel like I am missing out, or deprived of the yummy bad-for-me-foods that I used to eat constantly.  It’s less important to me what junky foods I put in my mouth.  The second I made a mental commitment to get 6-pack abs and stop eating ungodly amounts of carbs and sugar, was the moment that eating became less of a priority.  Now, I eat to fuel my body and I don’t eat because of boredom, and general chocolate or late night eating addictions. I am finally in control of my appetite and it feels sooooo freakin’  good!! 

So if anyone is wondering if i'm going to fall off the wagon and binge on carbs and sugar like I haven’t had them in 3 weeks, you are wrong.  I plan on keeping this up for a long time, long after the abs come, and if I eat something sweet or want to go fully indulge at our favorite Mexican food restaurant, I will cut myself some slack and not feel bad about it!  In fact, I might appreciate it more than I did before.  

Workouts

I want to add that I have great energy for my workouts!  Maybe it’s a mental thing...that I feel confident, and stronger overall, but i'm not lacking in energy, and I'm ready to take on the world!  If I can train this hard at 8,600 feet in elevation, anyone can do this! 

Challenges

1)  A week ago, I sadly cut the top part of my 'arse' from excessive ab workouts!  I blame it on the “rollbacks” that Tim (my trainer) has me doing.  Maybe it's a result of doing them a little bit too often...not sure.  Apparently I overdid myself on the rollback move and will now need to take it easy with that particular exercise until I heal. 

Update - I healed in about 3 days and now am a "rollback" machine once again.  Additionally, I was informed at group training last night that I was doing the exercise too fast.  It's no wonder I burned the skin off! 

2)  Going out to eat can be a bit tricky.  It’s fun but still amazes me how hard it is to find “healthy options”.  It really is easier to eat at home...and less temping to splurge.  I barely go out to eat so it’s not a big deal, and I'm typically able to find a salad option that's pretty great. 

Highlights

This was a fun filled and busy week - Lots of being out and about, trying new low-carb foods, and staying disciplined in my diet and ab workouts. 

Highlight 1)  Seeing results and knowing that I am burning more fat everyday! (See photo below)

Highlight 2)  My quick trip to Denver to visit a friend, and seeing the Peloton store in Cherry Creek, in person!  It was very cool and I felt and a sense of community knowing that CB South Fitness has a Peloton bike for its members, and that we're supporting their mission to spread the good word and help others get killer workouts.  They crush it on every ride! 

3)  New foods and new snacks! 

           a.  The Coconut Snack (photo below) was a great travel companion on my long drive home from Denver back to Crested Butte. 

           b.  Roasting garlic in the oven at 400 degrees for 30-35 minutes.  It tastes incredible and it's so easy to prepare.  I never in a million years thought I would love eating whole cloves of garlic so much (photo below).  Also - have you read about the health benefits of garlic???(http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/nutrition-roasted-garlic-7001.html)! 

           c.  Brownies (healthy ones)!  Need I say more other than make them!  (https://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2016/03/07/the-ultimate-unbaked-brownies-raw-vegan/)  

           d. New favorite spot to eat out - Tassinong Farms in CB South!  A new social venue in our charming Crested Butte South community with a great wine bar, classy barn wood interior, relaxing atmosphere, and a wonderful and healthy menu selection (consisting of roughly 2/3rd's salad options).  I had the chicken curry salad salad and the freshest most wonderful greens I have ever had in my life!  If you want to learn more about Tassinong’s delicious greens I would highly suggest that you head on over to check out Tassinong Food & Wine, or visit their website https://www.tassinongfarms.com/our-story.  I just got home from buying some greens for the house for this week and can't wait for my next salad! 

4) Skiing with Andy...FUN, and one of few snow days for us so far this season! 

5) Hiking with my girl, #Athenathebear, and seeing a large heard of elk up on a ridge!  She didn't notice them (thankfully) but I could have watched them all day.  It was awesome! 

6) Training at CB South Fitness with friends during the week and then group training every Wednesday night!  We have a great time and we all support each other to meet our personal fitness goals.  Seriously people, what could be better!?! 

Wrap-up

All-in-all, this was the best week!  I had a couple of days that were hard to stick to the diet, or where I needed to get creative, but all-in-all give it two thumbs up.  I look forward to results in week 4 and beyond! 

The beginning of week 3

The beginning of week 3

These are so good! 

These are so good! 

 
#onepeloton 

#onepeloton 

Oven roasted garlic 

Oven roasted garlic 

Here is the Peloton (this is last years photo). One awesome ride! 

Here is the Peloton (this is last years photo). One awesome ride! 

Training :) 

Training :)