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Posts posted by Vintage

  1. I would say give it a little time. Your brain and body might adjust to the new foods and your appetite might level off. You might also not be eating as many calories as you think if you're basing your diet around vegetables and lean meats. If you notice significant weight gain that sticks around for several weeks, then do some calorie counting and adjust accordingly. 


    What's makes a vegetable a breakfast vegetable? In my life, if you eat it for breakfast, it's breakfast. My breakfasts often involve a lot of re-purposed leftovers (meats and veggies). I keep veggies pre-diced in the fridge for quickly tossing in a pan in the morning (and fully or partially cooked sometimes, depending on the veggies). I bulk cook on Sunday, but generally don't make anything specific for breakfasts - but I will make extra of some things (meats and veggies) or dice extra veggies while I'm at it, and set them aside for breakfasts. It all gets tossed in a pan in various combinations, and if I want it to be breakfast-y, I top it with an egg. 


    An example morning:

    Yesterday I woke up and tossed some leftover shredded, roasted sweet potato in a pan and stirred it around til it was warm, then slid it on a plate. Then I put a little bit of butter in the pan, and put in a few tablespoons of onion (pre-diced and stored in tupperware in the fridge), stirred it around a few times, and added in kale and spinach (the pre-washed, ready to eat stuff) and a little bit of water, a few red pepper flakes, and sprinkle of salt, and let them soften. Then came chunks of pork chop (Thursday night I had made pork chops for dinner, and cooked an extra one, then cut it in bite-sized pieces so it was ready for rapid reheating). After about 60 seconds, I tossed in about 5 cherry tomatoes that I had cut in half (using the lid of my pork-chop leftover container as a makeshift-cutting board since it was going to have to be washed anyways). After about 5 stirs, I slid it all onto the plate next to the sweet potato. Then I put a little bit more butter into my pan, and cracked in an egg. I broke the yoke so it would cook quickly (I don't like runny yolks), sprinkled it with salt and pepper, let it cook most of the way, flippped it over and immediately turned off the heat (the pan is still hot, so it will finish cooking the egg without drying it out accidentally). I poured my second cup of coffee, grabbed some salsa out of the fridge (I'm Texan), slid the egg out of the pan on top of the kale mixture and chowed down. 


    Total time was less than 10 minutes, and I ended up with one small skillet, a spatula, a knife, a thing of tupperware, and my plate and fork to wash. 


    Calorie counting and paleo don't seem to combine well, though maybe others have success with it. If you're eating paleo just eat, and if you're hungry. Staying Paleo is easier if you don't let yourself stay hungry.


    I don't know that I agree to be honest.


    Yes, many people can eat strict paleo and not need to count calories, because it is harder to go overboard on calories if you're truly eating paleo (read: your diet is based around unprocessed meals of vegetables, lean protein, healthy fats and some fruit... you didn't just replace your daily baked goods with paleo-fied versions and you're not eating almond butter by the jar). But the question here is related to the opposite issue - is the OP eating enough calories (or enough of the right things)? And that is very much an issue with paleo.


    Depending on your diet before, there's a good chance that your calorie estimations are off, simply because your old standards of estimation aren't going to be much use. I'd say if you're feeling hungry and want to know if all is well, then do the math, at least for a few days. Be accurate. How many calories, carbs, fats and proteins are you getting per day, and where are those distributed through the day (especially relative to physical activity)? After a few days of doing the math on calories, not only will you have several days worth of concrete data to make your decisions on, you'll also have given yourself time to adjust to the changes. There's a good chance your body will adjust just fine -- many of our hunger signals are a combination of our brains expecting food and communicating that to our digestive system and our bodies trying to adjust to using different amounts and sources of energy. 


    the short version: give it more time and gather some concrete data while you're at it... then you'll be in a better position to judge whether changes are needed.

  3. That does sound like normal stiffness/soreness after use. Just stay moving throughout the day (being a preschool teacher helps... I've done that job), so if you have to sit for long periods try to get up periodically and stretch a bit. Do some basic stretches (child's pose, up/down dog, toe touches) to minimize the stiffness. I always end dead lifting sessions (or any other heavy back days) with 5-10 minutes of stretching that focuses on my back and posterior chain.


    Some people use ibuprofen, but I've read some research that says that while it's not harmful, we should remember that a certain amount of inflammation is part of our body's healing process, so we shouldn't be too quick to medicate it away. I try to reserve the pills for the days I'm too sore to perform basic functions.

  4. Without a form video or a medical examination, none of us can say for sure, but my back does get stiff and sore just like the rest of my muscles when I work them.


    You're not supposed to lift the weight with your back when you deadlift... but that doesn't mean your back muscles don't get worked. With all of your compound lifts, the muscles in your back (along with the rest of your core) should be active and working hard to provide stabilization -- if they're not active and working, your back will start rounding and your odds of a back injury skyrocket. Muscles have two big jobs: flexion/extension and stabilization.


    This is going to be true of all of your big compound lifts. Even on a bench press or strict overhead press, your legs, glutes and core should be super duper tight and active. 

  5. Maybe mention it to your doc next time you're in, but if you don't have other symptoms I might not worry overmuch. In addition to the other types of symptoms people have already mentioned, pay attention to the location of the bruises. Bruises on places with thin skin that get bumped around a lot is one thing (think shins, arms, knees, etc.)... if you start seeing bruises on your stomach and chest, for instance, that may be a different story. 


    I've always been an easy bruiser, but now I've got some additional medical complications that make the problem even worse. I tend to play "Hey, how'd I get that bruise?" in the shower every night. I get strangers asking me what happened because my thighs are purple splotched and I'm like "Oh, I was foam rolling last night." One thing I noticed is that my bruising is always much, much more apparent in the winter (particularly towards the end, like now), when I'm at my palest. Once I start to get a little color, it's not nearly as obvious. 

  6. A lot of parents at my box use the back-to-back scenario. One will go to the first class, while the other one keeps the munchkin(s) and brings them to the box towards the end of the class. They get to cheer on one parent for the last few reps, then that parent takes the kiddo home while the other parent takes the next class. It's not perfect, especially because you don't actually get to work out with your S.O., but it works. 


    Babysitters get expensive quickly, but there are probably some creative solutions. Ask around at your box, starting with the coaches, to see how other parents do it. There may be someone who has a great sitter that they'd be willing to share with you, or another mom that you can trade off watching both kids with, someone who has a teenager that could come to the gym and keep the toddler occupied and out of the way for an hour (while you're close-by), etc.

    • Like 1
  7. I would say that women on average have a harder time on OHP (and bench) than men on average. My guess is that if you were to somehow to graph the difficulty factor in making gains to show the distributions for men and for women, the mean for women would be higher (harder) and for men would be lower, but the two distributions would overlap quite a bit. You'd have men who struggled more than some women, and women who were close to the mean for men. The same is true for the ability to pack on muscle (yes, some women "bulk" up faster than others), fast twitch vs slow twitch muscle fiber ratio, lower body vs upper body strength, and all of the other areas where we compare men and women. Hell, it's probably very very similar to a histogram showing height distributions for males and females. 


    As for OHP, one thing I've used for stalls (since I don't have fractional plates) is introduce tempos, particularly on the eccentric (downward) movement. If I had 3X5 of 75, for instance, but not 80, I would work on slowing down those 75# sets, maybe using a 2 or 3 second count down to start with. It helps with strength, control of the movement, and gives me time to focus on form. 

    • Like 2
  8. I know sciatic nerve issues can cause symptoms that radiate in the pattern you've described. I had similar issues. In these cases, the sciatica stuff is a symptom of another problem, such as disc issues in your lower back. 


    I'd go with the chiro or your gp, but it depends on the specific person and your relationship with them. If it is sciatica, you won't want to leave it at that, you're going to want to know the underlying cause so you can address it. 

  9. I'd spend more time on your diet before worrying about a B12 shot. I see some spinach, but breakfast and dinner are devoid of veggies -where are the rest of your greens? Not only will these provide you with vitamins, fiber, and minerals you need, they'll help your feel full without packing in calories. How're your iron levels? I see a lot of chicken, but that's not a great source of iron. Throw in some beef, pork, turkey, etc. And seafood, too. (bonus: these are significantly better sources of B12 in your diet than chicken, and the seafood will improve your Omega 3 intake). You seem to be taking in the bulk of your carbs at dinner (in the form of sweet potato), which may not be ideal. Carbs are a fantastic source of energy - night time usually isn't when we need that. 



    As for calorie goals... don't spend too much time right now stressing about the perfect number of calories. First focus on figuring out what you're eating now. Be precise. No internet calculator will be as accurate as tracking your intake, reducing it by a couple of hundred cal/day to start with, and tracking the results. Then adjust accordingly. 

  10. Walking is unlikely to be a big issue. It's possible that it will slightly increase the calories you need to take in to bulk, but that should be it. For the exception of people for whom walking is very challenging (the very overweight and out of shape), our bodies are super efficient at walking long distances as far as calorie use and muscle use/damage goes, and that efficiency improves even more relatively quickly when someone walks a lot. If you think about early human history and evolution, the why will make a lot of sense.


    But just out of curiosity... how are you being forced to do this? If you really don't want to walk 8 miles and it isn't a part of your goals, don't do it. 

  11. I'd echo just about everything said above, especially the parts about measuring the stuff you plan to train and the advice to focus on 3-5 rep maxes as a beginner, but I'd add max reps of strict pull ups to the list (or longest negative if you don't have a strict pull up yet). And while you're doing this, see if you can get your friend to video you. It's helpful to look at at the time and to have as reference. 


    And let this be the start of an obsessive habit of tracking everything. I keep a log on penzu now, so I can easily search for stuff when I need to, go back in and add notes and attach images, etc. Record what you planned to do, what you did (if it differed), the weights/reps, and how if felt/random thoughts. If I didn't PR but hit a previous number and it felt better, I note it. If I tried out a new cue or noticed a weakness or technique issue, I note it. If some body part isn't feeling so awesome, I note it. I'm losing weight, so I note bodyweight changes every 10 lbs or so because it affects my lifts.

  12. I really really hate the way mine look without a bra. I've lost about 75 lbs in the past 18 months, and went from a 36G to a 32D in the process - I'm a lot happier with the overall size of my boobs, but I can't stand the shape. I'm 25 and I've never had kids, but my boobs sure look like they have. It's frustrating, and I suspect surgery is the only real fix.


    On the plus side, I've got pecs now... it doesn't help when I don't have a bra on, but when I do, the muscle helps fill out the top of the cup more.

    • Like 1
  13. Old navy actually does a damn good job with their compression bottoms. You might check those out. 


    I do spend money on lululemon because their stuff holds up well, performs well, and looks cute. And since I left my previous job that required me to dress like a real grown up and I'm at the gym 1-2x/day, I wear workout clothes a lot, so they're a reasonable investment. But they have a fairly narrow size range, and when they pants are too tight they WILL be see through. Also, what I've learned from them is that stuff that was designed specifically as running gear often won't pass the squat/yoga test, since it wasn't designed for that.

  14. I wouldn't spend too much time specifically training your calves. Like others have said, things like squats and prowler pushes will hit them hard.


    I have calves (and quads) that strangers comment on in grocery stores and whatnot. Part of this is just my genetics, but some things that have seemed to make them even more defined: jump roping as a chunk of my conditioning,often barefoot (though I do double unders also, which is awesome but should not be done barefoot unless you want to break a toe); sprints (on flats, up hills, and prowler pushes/sled pushes if you have access); lots and lots of squats of all kinds, including jump squats, almost all of which I do without shoes; bike riding.


    Oh, and try skipping. Power skipping, trying to get as high off the ground as possible, and long skips. Good for coordination, magically makes you happy, and works calves well. 

  15. The only supplements I take are protein powder and fish oil. I started taking the fish oil because I do have rheumatoid arthritis, and I did notice a big difference for that. But I also noticed that I was generally recovering better, my skin looks fantastic, and my lifelong depression is managed without medication. Of course, it's all anecdotal evidence... I don't have scientific proof for anything. But I think it's worth trying.


    I take a high dose of quality fish oil, and it's expensive. The Stronger, Faster, Healthier liquid is the most tolerable, high concentrated stuff I've found. Take it like a shot (my roommate actually uses a shot glass for this), and chase it with OJ to get the last of the taste out of your mouth. I struggle with the liquid stuff, so I generally take PurePharma's gel capsules. My dosage adds up to 3g of DHA+EPA per day (not 3g of fish oil, which isn't the same thing).


    Just a note: work up to higher dosages pretty slowly and use higher quality products to prevent side effects. Going from no fish oil to a high dose all at once will leave you with some tummy issues.

  16. I'd lower reps and then add them back in. Go to the point where you feel yourself really struggling, and do one more rep. Then stop there, and aim to hit that same number in the next set. You'll be surprised how fast things like that will improve.


    Just a note... My natural tendency with lunges was to push off of my front toe and drive back up with my back leg, which was inefficient and exhausting. I had to focus for a long time on driving back up off of my front heel. This made things so much more efficient and stable (and hit my glutes harder, instead of letting the quads on my front leg power the drive).

  17. I was thinking the same thing as Why not? A single training session isn't evidence of much of anything. 


    That said, your progress is probably going to stall out while you cut. That's just the unfortunate trade off, but it's not permanent. Lose what you want to lose for this cut, then cycle back to focusing on gains. Consider taking advantage of this time by really focusing on form and technique, trying a new movement variation, etc. 

  18. I don't think normal underwear would... but someone did ask about control wear earlier, which yes, probably would restrict some movement.


    My shorts don't give me wedgies - they're ones that are designed to be worn without underwear if you want and they fit properly. But underwear do give me wedgies when I squat, and that's unpleasant to say the least. I had zero idea how much underwear affected the fit of my shorts (and made them slide down all the time) until I forgot undies one day and went without. I haven't looked back since. But to each their own. Do what you gotta do to get things done, and don't show me your lady bits while I'm trying to focus on my work and we're all good. 

    • Like 1
  19. Whole 30 lays out the super strict version.


    Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf discusses the sciency-stuff in more depth.


    Mark's Daily Apple is a good source for primal living (basically paleo with some dairy allowed).



    What about butter? 

    Sour cream?

    Cheeses of any kind?

    What sugars are OK? Any natural sugars?

    Anything besides water OK?


    So the answer with some of these is that it depends. There isn't really one paleo - it varies between experts and between followers both because people disagree on some of the science, because individual's bodies are different (we don't all react to dairy the same way, for instance), and because different people are looking for different things out of paleo and prioritize different things. 


    Some people say that clarified butter (ghee) is ok. Some say that a variety of full fat dairy is ok. Some are ok with dairy in general, but prefer it to be grass fed, organic, and made from cows blessed by the Virgin Mary herself. Similarly, some people are ok with stevia (or honey or cane sugar or whatever) and some people say it's ok on occasion after you go through your "detox", and some people say nothing sweeter than plain fruit is ok. You can either start out by picking an expert or a program and just following what they say or you can do some reading and pick and choose based on your goals, priorities and the realities of your life/what you're actually willing to do.

  20. I stopped wearing anything under my workout shorts and capris about a year ago - and I just make sure I buy ones that are designed for this. My running shorts have built in briefs and my spandex and capris have the gussets in the crotch area. I just make sure they fit well and aren't see-through. 


    What I found was that not only did I not have to worry about wedgies or the tops showing on my back, the clothes actually fit a lot better and stayed up better. 


    I know girls at my gym that prefer loose, basketball style shorts for working out in, and they wear the little compression shorts underneath in place of undies - they cover well if anything shifts and they stay put.


    Now my only problem is remembering to pack undies in my bag if I'm changing into non-gym wear after a workout - there have been a few times when I went to change to head to work/out to dinner/whatever and realized I didn't have any undies with me.

    • Like 2
  21. Fran arms... you can always tell it was fran day at our box just by looking at the poorly written times on the board because no one can hold a marker correctly after they finish.


    The thing about fran and workouts like that is that it should never not suck. The suck lasts for less time, but it's always going to be an awful feeling. Actually, it tends to get worse as you start to go unbroken. 


    Just a note (not in a critical way): as a baseline it's ok, but I really loath the heavy use of bands in metcons for training purposes. Ring rows and jumping pull ups served me (and other women around me) a lot better, and you can better match the intensity. Our box has an 8 minute cap for fran, and we have to scale accordingly to preserve the intended intensity. 

  22. How do hollow holds feel? Lay on your back,lift your shoulders and your feet off the ground while tucking your ribs to your pelvis - your lower back should be touching the ground and your shirt should be wrinkling around your stomach. The scale is to bend one or both knees and put your hands in front of you (not above your head).


    These should suck pretty hard if you do them well, but they'll strengthen that hollow position, which sounds like it's the weak point. 

  23. I love my rxgear rope. The handles fit well in my hands, it doesn't ever tangle or crimp and it turns perfectly. They do seem a bit pricey at first, but replacement cables are actually cheap and easy to change out, which is a big plus for me. I started on a heavier weight cable while I was doing mostly singles because it helped me feel where the rope was, but I just switched to a lighter one (2.6) now that I'm connecting double unders in workouts. Partly for speed and partly because those heavier ones really hurt when I miss a DU. I ordered a replacement cable in a discontinued color and it ended up costing less than $6. There's no reason I'll need to replace the handles any time remotely soon - if the cable gets torn up, I want a different weight, or I feel like having a different color, I only have to replace the cable. 

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