Let’s Do This – Keto or Nothing
I made it through the first week on the ketogenic diet and I honestly feel good. I wouldn’t say I feel amazing, however. I knew from the start this would take a little while to really start to feel the effects of the diet/lifestyle. In fact, I suffered from several of the symptoms most people feel. Below, I want to break down some of the first-week highlights.
Foods I Ate
- Eggs – A pretty obvious choice on most diets
- Avocado – A great source of fat
- Bacon – high quality and extra fatty
- Chicken/Steak/Fish – Core proteins that were fattier pieces
- Heavy whipping cream and Kerrygold Butter
- Broccoli/Asparagus/Cruciferous Greens
- Nuts – Several different kinds
These are the core groups I ate during the first week and it didn’t take long to adapt to eating these foods. Removing the carbs, rice, bread, and sugars wasn’t that difficult. After what I’ve learned, I’m glad I’m not eating them. Will I have a piece of pizza in the future, yes. Right now I’m focused on getting the right nutrition to put me in ketosis.
Although nutrition and watching what I eat is my main focus, I knew that exercise was an important complement to getting healthy. Working out 4 to 6 times a week has been my regimen for the last few years. The more I worked out, the better I felt. Having the workout routine and eating habits sync up is critical for success. I did notice a little bit of weakness when trying to lift heavy. For the most part, I remained at the same level as when I started. This can be a mix of different things, but the lack of carbohydrates might’ve played a factor. Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll know what is working and what isn’t. You never know what you might have to change to make things run smooth.
One interesting thing I discovered in the first week, was the shopping list. Above I mentioned some of the foods I ate in the first week. However, when you’re at the grocery store, you realize how many different types of foods you can eat. Organizing the grocery list for the week, although very simple, we had some discovering factors. Not that this was difficult, it just added an extra step at the store. We were able to find most items that were recommended. We even made a trip to Trader Joe’s, which is about one hour away. They do offer a lot of things that some of the major grocery stores like Wegmans don’t offer.
How do I feel?
Let’s get into the guts of the first week. I did notice some stomach discomfort after the first few days. I knew this was part of getting rid of all of the sugars and nonessential nutrients. By incorporating leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables, my stomach was adapting to the new normal. This definitely took some time and it will most likely carry on for a little while.
Within the first few days of changing the food I ate, I did notice my hunger fade away. Maybe it was the cravings for chips and bread early on, but soon I was able to not even think about those foods. With the amount of fat you’re incorporating into your daily routine, it fills you up quite quickly and leaves you feeling full longer. Sometimes you aren’t hungry for hours because it takes longer to digest fats and proteins than carbohydrates.
Ketosis and Pee Strips
A lot of people talk about getting into ketosis and how you monitor this. Although there are several methods, the easiest way is by using the pee test strips. You can get them at your local grocery store, pharmacy or Amazon. All you have to use is a cup and place the strip in the cup for about a minute. There is a color-coded chart declaring your level. The lighter the color the less likely you are in ketosis and the darker the strip, the more likely you’re in ketosis. The first few days did not show much on the scale. On the seventh day, I definitely saw an increase in color. This led me to believe that I was starting to burn fat.
Note – Burning fat can have two meanings. 1. You can be burning dietary fat or 2. Burning your own stored fat. Burning stored body fat for energy is the ultimate goal.
Although it’s not the most important thing on a ketosis diet, coffee otherwise known as “Keto Coffee” is a big factor for me. It allowed me to incorporate a lot of the fat I needed while enjoying a caffeinated beverage. For the most part, I added 3 to 5 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream and 1 tablespoon of Kerrygold butter. This drink gave me 32-55 grams of fat. This definitely helped me hit the macro levels I was after for that particular day. How I make my coffee will be explained in a future post.
One Week Weight Loss
I started Keto with a weight of 176.6. By the end of the first week, I was at 173.8. This was almost 3 pounds in one week. Most likely due to water weight loss.
I feel that a big piece of this routine will be the incorporation of intermittent fasting. Although it’s not really something I’ve tried, it does prove to be worthy of consideration in the future. Prolonged fasts are also something I want to try as well. I usually start off with a cup of coffee as I mentioned above -normally around 9:00 am. My goal with intermittent fasting would be to start at three meals a day, go to two meals a day, one meal a day and eventually try to go for a long term fast. I’m not at that point yet so I will continue to eat the normal macros at regular times.
As I become fat adapted and learn more about nutrition, I will continue to share my story. If you have any questions about the ketogenic diet please don’t be afraid to ask.
Please feel free to reach out with Any Questions.