Interested if anyone has any tips on rekindling the passion for Paleo. I've been eating this way for just about a year now including two months of Whole30, the last one being July. My work has become increasingly stressful lately and I am dealing with some medication (Strattera) that makes me less hungry, and this is dealing a killer 1-2 punch to my enthusiasm for eating clean.
How do you keep yourself on track and what do you read, watch, chant or do to get back on the wagon?
My usual approach is to read Robb Wolf/Mark Sisson's books and some of the gorgeous cookbooks, but doesn't seem to be hitting my subconscious brain that's reaching for the snack rack at work on almost a daily basis this last week. I'd rather not do another Whole30 just yet, as stressing out over finding purely Whole30 compliant lunches at work is something I really don't need in my life right now :)
So after a year it's still a chore. What about all this energy people talk about, what about the weight loss (if that was your goal), what about the feeling healthy? Aren't you getting any of this?
If I have bread or grains I know my digestion will play up, so I don't do it.
I got into Paleo because I want to live long and healthily because I have a son who has Down's Syndrome and who may never be able to live independently, so I want to be around long enough and well enough to help him.
But you're not likely to find your motivation in mine. I'd suggest you need to go back to why you started in the first place. Have you reached your goal? If so, you either need a new goal or you need to be OK with how you are.
Best way is to turn it into a habit and forget that you're doing some sort of a diet altogether. What I do is, eat the same foods every day, in more or less the same order, so in the end I don't think about food not one bit. I don't find myself thinking "what should I cook today", and so there's rarely an opportunity to think of something else (possibly worse, less "clean") than the usual. There are more interesting things in life to spend time on, than bothering with diet.
I can relate first-hand to needing to renew a commitment to clean eating after the honeymoon period is over. I'm 13 months into my third paleo/low-carb effort, and I've been backsliding some.
It helps me to hang out in a supportive virtual community. Mark's Daily Apple has a forum where you ask for support. Also, remember that giving support, via answering questions on Paleohacks, MDA, or some other paleo-friendly forum, is another method of reinforcing your own commitment.
On a more tactical level, consider getting someone else to make your paleo meals for awhile. The fancy way is to subscribe to something like Pre-Made Paleo or hire a professional personal chef. A cheaper way would be to advertise for someone on Craigslist that you pay to come to your place to make your food in bulk 1x or 2x/week (I'd run an in-depth background check on someone I'd hired via Craigslist, though).
On the strategic level, it seems like you need to develop more techniques for managing your stress to get at the source of your problems. Can you tune out work after a certain time of the day? Can you spend 5–20 minutes at both ends of the day to develop a mindfulness meditation practice? Can you get 10 minutes of direct exposure to sunlight in the morning and afternoon? Can you afford a weekly massage? Can you brainstorm for 15 minutes with a group of friends on the phone/Skype/Google Voice/IM client about ways to reduce your stress or help you cope with it?
I hope these suggestions and questions spur you to develop your own set of techniques to support your health. Check back here and let us know what and how you're doing.
One of the things that keeps me 'on the wagon' is looking at my own before and after photos, as well as those posted by others. Nothing is more motivating (in my eyes, at least) than seeing a photo of the fat unhealthy blob I represented before I started on the Paleo diet!
I have the desert and try to eat at high end restaurants. The classier the place the more Paleo friendly the menu because the price is high and the cheap starches are low. I give in and I get back on track and I don't judge myself harshly because food tastes good. I enjoy it for what its worth and get back on track keeping in mind my clearly defined diet/lifestyle and fitness goals. In other words. Just do it. If you can't commit for a day don't. If you can't commit for your life, this isn't for you so please be pleased with the choices you make and get some counseling about why you make goals for yourself and never seem to get anywhere. Its about body acceptance.
Strattera makes you less hungry? I've been taking it for at least 6 years and haven't noticed that. If you want to use the Chrohns system of keeping bad foods out do the following.
Eat snack like yeast roll. Punch self in stomach a few hours later. Associate stomach punch with yeast roll. Food doesn't taste as good next time.
The stomach punch is the closest pain I could describe, although its internal and radiates from the ulceration point. But the pain is associated with the food, and that food becomes less desirable.
I grab a rabid squirrel and just bite into the F'er right in front of anyone who wishes to see. Just eat it raw. Don't be scurred. Then I'll shake a fellas hand and use that very hand to grab a drink of water WITHOUT washing it....yeah, I'm crazy. I'll even eat a carrot out of my garden without washing it too! F U! OK thats a little bit less than the squirrel thing that I didn't actually do, but hey I did shake that guys hand and laugh at him using the antibacterial soap while I didn't :D
I'd suggest that the paleo part isn't where there's a problem and that looking at things holistically might help.
You mention being stressed and this could be a huge factor making you unhappy and more likely to want to eat reassuringly sugary junk food.
If it's the emotional part of your brain making you go for the snack food, then trying to refocus on paleo won't help, you need to work out what's going on with the emotional bit.
I'd suggest a balanced look at diet, well being (mental health) and exercise. Paying attention to your well being and exercise and reducing stress might make paleo feel more enjoyable again.
what I do is not keep any non paleo foods in the house at all. that way anything goes.
I have a donut recipe whose ingredients are all paleo - so I CAN have my cake and eat it too. and it doesnt make me go the slippery sweets slope either, so I can have one and not worry.
definitely evaluate WHY you eat the way you do. I do it everyday, and everyday it's worth it.