We got this testimonial from Laura, a woman at CrossFit HAX who works out under Max Shippee, a regular contributor here. We loved her enthusiasm, and thought some of our readers could relate to her experiences. To see some other testimonials, head to our Paleo Plan Testimonials page.
I am not creative in the kitchen. I am way too impatient to think up a meal, and other than salt and pepper, spices really confuse me. So can you imagine my dismay when Max at Crossfit Hax issued the first 30-day Paleo detox challenge? I already have a hard time making meals as it is, and you’re telling me I now have to give up rice? Despite the fact that my family will probably disown me for this (I’m Filipino and we eat rice with EVERYTHING, even noodles), I was determined to give it a try because I wanted to see how it affected my performance. The result? For 30 days, I basically would eat chicken with spinach everyday because I didn’t know what else to eat. I would have boiled eggs for breakfast, and some nuts for a snack. My idea of being creative was eating an avocado (yes, straight up avocado) for breakfast instead of boiled eggs. My motto was, “Some may call this pathetic, but I call it resourceful.”
Doing this for 30 days wasn’t too bad, and it really did improve my performance. The first time I did the challenge, my baseline work out went from 5:30 minutes to 5:05 minutes. Baseline at our box is basically 500m row (why??), 40 squats (are you crazy?), 30 sit-ups (eh), 20 push-ups (this hurts), and 10 pull-ups (when did 10 become a big number?). I also took before and after pictures, and I was surprised at how noticeable the changes were in just 30 days. After the challenge, I tried to keep up with Paleo since it really made me feel like my body was running clean, but it wasn’t long before I started going back to pizza, chips, and other easy to reach food. I slowly but surely transitioned from Paleo to Faileo. Being in Faileo mode didn’t cause me to spill out of my jeans or significantly drop in performance, but it didn’t make my performance any better and I would feel pretty winded during the work outs. Well, more than usual, that is. I just felt a little off.
So I decided to try to do another 30-day paleo challenge, and try to get others at the box to do it with me. This time, Max introduced me to Paleo Plan, which is a heaven-sent gift for the culinary-challenged such as myself. It basically provides you with a list of meals planned out for the week (with recipes) and an ingredients list, with numbers that match the meal with the ingredients. Genius! I immediately showed one of my co-workers, a fellow Crossfitter and Paleo-struggling-not-to-Faileo, and he was also impressed with the concept. He did have a very valid concern though, which was that Paleo Plan “didn’t leave much room for partying.” There’s a flex day, but what if you wanted to party on days other than Friday? I was sad for a moment, but then I realized that since the meals are numbered to correspond with the ingredients list, it’s easy enough to mark off the ingredients for meals that will be substituted with beer tequila.
Paleo Plan is awesome not only because it helps me with my grocery shopping and frustration in the kitchen, but mostly because it keeps my meals interesting. I’m trying recipes that I wouldn’t have otherwise, like the fruited chicken thighs (I don’t normally like fruit with meat), and I’m cooking things that I love but was too lazy to try because it seemed difficult, like tapioca crepes and banana almond pancakes. I don’t have to go to the grocery store in the middle of the week because I ran out of food, and I don’t buy things that eventually go bad in my fridge. I’m sure others are also happy that I’m on Paleo Plan because I bring in muffins once in a while that actually taste good, whereas before I would either not share, or share something that tastes awful, like the bland oatmeal I used to eat every day. So just to give you an idea of how much Paleo Plan has helped me, here are some before and after pictures.
BEFORE (boiled eggs)
AFTER (Tapioca Crepes with Sausage and Spinach)
BEFORE (I don’t even remember what this was – Kale Chips and Chicken?)
AFTER (Taco Salad sans Taco)
BEFORE (Can of Tuna…with Mayo)
AFTER (Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini and Squash Sautee)
The second 30-day challenge is over and I’m now starting the third 30-day challenge, and yes, these challenges were pretty much back to back. I would not have agreed to this if it meant boiled eggs, chicken with spinach, and a can of tuna every day. So, thank you Paleo Plan for helping out the kitchen-impaired. It is much appreciated.