I'm really not feeling the 'boundless energy' some people claim to have on a Paleo diet. Quite the contrary; some days I haven't even got the energy to sit up straight or bend over to pick things up. I'm also quite moody. I keep a diary on how I feel, what I eat etc. Some days are better than others I haven't found any connections so far. I have noticed I generally feel better in the evenings. Some info about me:
- Paleo for 1+ year
- Goal is fat loss
- 6 ft, 187 lbs
- Sleep 7-9 hrs in pitch black room
- 3 x week strength training: SL5x5 (fasted in the mornings)
- not much sprinting yet
- no supplements
- grass-fed beef, free range lamb/pork/chicken, Kerrygold butter, Omega3 eggs, herring, farmed salmon, sardines couple times a week
- I eat once or twice a day as per PaNu (usually dinner and occasional midday snack or breakfast), high fat, low carb, ketogenic.
- 40mins bike ride a day + 15-30 min of walking after dinner
- Desk job which I spend most of the time standing or strolling around.
I'm very strict paleo for the most part, except for 'commercial' heavy cream and occasionally creme fraiche. The last couple of months have been 2-3 weeks very strict paleo, then I binge on CRAP... or just eat WAY to much paleo foods. I don't know why... Perhaps because I calorie restrict to much? Am I tired because of a lack of calories? Ketogenic diets are supposed to give you ALOT of energy while on a caloric deficit, right? According to some answers found here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/22505/how-to-start-a-ketogenic-diet#axzz1Olyxdn92
Am I just not giving my body enough time to re-adapt to VLC / Keto (after binging...)? I don't plan on making the binging a habit... but it just happened to turn out that way; family parties etc.. I figure I'm pretty keto adapted.. not sure how long it takes to fight off any hypoglycemia after a high carb session even though I'm VLC most of the time?
Or should I just introduce more carbs? Are there any other things that might effect my energy so drasticly? I know some wise guy said that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is insanity but I have had alot of success with a ketogenic diet in the past. I might eat some PWO carbs if this goes on. But I want that 'keto-super-energy-lack-of-apitite-ultimate-fatloss' thing to kick in! I don't realy track any calories, I do check with ketostix pretty much every day.
I have experimented with supplements in the past (Vit D, n3, Mg mostly) but haven't noticed a significant difference. There have been alot of questions regarding fatigue, lack of motivation etc and I know it will probably come down to me experimenting with carbs/meals/sleep/supps etc. But the way I feel now my days are worthless and I can't do anything productive, and I need to! So if anyone has any ideas please let me know!
Thanks in advance.
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Every time I hear this, I wonder if the person is eating enough fat. You don't mention cooking with coconut oil and how much butter do you consume daily? What CUTS of meat are you consuming? The fattier the better. I don't count calories and don't supplement. I have been able to maintain 6%-8% BF for quite some time and have only recently incorporated sweet potatoes once every 7 days PWO. I lost over 110lbs on ZC Paleo in less than one year and always have boundless energy. IMO, strength training should be done once every 3-4 days. I have done this for years with most favorable results. My prescription....reduce training frequency and EAT MORE FAT! Best of luck and best of health!
Everything you are doing sounds wonderful, but it is obviously not working for you.
Personally, I would try to add more carbs. You may gain a little bit of weight while experimenting, but you may not. What I would suggest is adding about 50g of starchy carbs per day just to see what happens. You are a pretty decent size guy, so you should be able to handle that. Give it two weeks and see if it helps, but honestly, I would expect results pretty immediately. If it makes the binging worse, which is a possibility, then you may need to look for a different option.
I know supplements are not supported by standard paleo, but I find that unless I take additional B complex I drag like a parachute. If it works, it works within an hour or two.
You may have hypoglycemia and/or insulin resistance. In the book "Why Isn't My Brain Working?", Dr. Datis Kharrazian has a great chapter on these conditions - why they cause you to feel terrible and crave foods when you're trying to cut them out..
Also, food sensitivities may be a problem and doing an elimination diet to find out which foods bother you could be very valuable. We always think that as long as we don't eat gluten and sugar, we should be fine. But people can have reactions to "healthy" foods like celery, bananas, berries, avocado...you name it. Food sensitivities can cause spikes in adrenalin and can mess with you in various ways.
Last, as one person noted, you may have thyroid issues. If you do, know that "healthy" foods can really mess with you. Especially cruciferous vegetables. This is also discussed in the book mentioned above. Another great website regarding certain foods, and ketosis, is "diagnosisdiet".
If you're dealing with any of these, you just have to be patient and tough it out through the healing process until these issues are resolved. But it's so worth it in the long run.
I had issues similar to yours when I went into full Ketogenic mode. I was running, lifting and cycling. Here is what I did that helped. I took protein suppliments, B complex and ate more oily and fatty foods hours before working out. Also I didn't Cycle and lift on the same day, I did life and run. I usually took a pre and post work out protein supplement. Although supplements are not "Paleo" I think I might have been shy on my ratio Body weight to protein. I'm 6'2" 177 and I try to consume 180g of protein a day in the form of foods and supplements. I came to the conclusion that when hit a level under 12% Body Fat, that I wasn't getting enough food. You might try eating an extra meal and see if that helps or more veggies.
You may have an underactive thyroid.
I had a post earlier this week here about the futility of counting calories (which goes into the futility of calorie restriction) - http://paleohacks.com/questions/39937/maintenance-calories-calories-added-for-a-workout/42843#42843 So don't worry about calorie restriction, just eat until your satisfied, food quality is more important. Not cheating (with non-paelo foods) is just as important.
Mike Eades has a good topic on becoming ketoadjusted, these two are good - http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/low-carb-library/why-we-get-fat/ and http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/ketones-and-ketosis/tips-tricks-for-starting-or-restarting-low-carb-pt-i/ sherpamelissa is also right, you need to experiment (within a reasonable range - no binging!) on how many carbs you really need to feel good. I feel great on a low carb diet, though it did take me nearly a month to ketoadapt. Some people need a few more carbs, play with it and see how it works.