How do I get over my shame and back to health?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 05, 2013 at 3:08 AM

For about a year, I was on a paleo super adventure:


I was doing really well (Not 100%; I could have done better still), until I lost my job and battled pneumonia. For weeks, I was out of whack. Finally, I found a job. And another. And another. At this point, I juggle three separate, inconsistent jobs because the grind here in Los Angeles is difficult lol. With a very unstable and chaotic schedule, in five months I'm pretty sure I gained back everything I worked so hard to lose that took twelve (how crazy is that??) I'm insanely embarrassed, ashamed, and in complete awe of myself. I hate to say that I'm too lazy to work out 3x a week or cook meals, because I am always working (graveyard shifts included), but I suppose it is true. I'm finding it extremely difficult to get myself back to health, though I know that it is the right thing to do and I believe in it. How do I get over my disbelief and get together a consistent health plan, even with a schedule that changes daily? I'm so sad over this lol I just want to get back to where I was; but where I was was a 9 to 5 mon to fri gig that was very convenient for health loss, and now it's completely erratic, which challenges "how paleo I really am."

Any insight, suggestions or tough love is super appreciated thank you

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2 Answers


on June 05, 2013
at 06:51 PM

First off, I would say take a deep breath and relax! Stressing yourself out about this isn't going to help you.

As far as exercise, look to body-weight exercises, or maybe get a kettlebell and a jump rope (good for a HIIT workout). Get in the habit of doing something for 15 minutes after you get up. If you can fit in another 15 minutes during the day- go for it!

For meals, I would really look into slow cooker meals. A great Paleo cookbook is "Paleo Slow Cooking" by Chrissy Gower. The slow cooker can be making your meal while you are at work, and most of the recipes will give you leftovers. Taking a few minutes to plan your meals for the week (once you know your work schedule) will help you.

Oh, and no tough-love needed...you already know you can do this! :)


on June 05, 2013
at 06:57 PM

In terms of cooking, your best bet may be crockpot meals: you can toss a bunch of ingredients in the crockpot before you leave for work and come back to a complete meal, no other cooking required. They also generate a decent amount of food in one cooking cycle, so you can leftover the rest and avoid cooking for a few days. It might mean a lot of repetitive meals, but better than feeling terrible after you eat, no?

For times when you have a lot of free time, make food and freeze it in single-serve containers so you can grab it and go for times when you'll be gone for multiple shifts at a time. If your only choice is fast food or SAD crap, consider using it as an opportunity to try intermittent fasting.

As for exercise, your best bet is to move to a bodyweight (for strength training) and sprints (for aerobic/anaerobic) system. Body weight exercises can be done anywhere, at any time, and really shouldn't take more than 20-30 min for a full workout, since there's no equipment setup or switching time. Sprints can be done in as little as 10 minutes (sprint for a minute, rest for a minute, repeat 4 more times) and can be done anywhere you can run. Whether you'd prefer to do your workouts all together at a scheduled time or spread out throughout the day is up to you (and there are benefits to each).

You might have to reprioritize your life: devote more time to cooking rather than getting drinks, exercising rather than catching up on your favorite shows, or sleeping rather than going out with friends. However, it also gives you an opportunity to try and combine those activities so you DON'T have to give them up (I'd not recommend sleeping with friends though; that usually ends poorly).

In the end, look at your situation as a chance to live a little MORE like a traditional hunter-gatherer. Your average HG doesn't have a schedule; our scheduled 9-5 work is a product of agriculture.

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