Below are day-in-the-life samples of the primal lifestyle. They're not intended to be exemplary for everyone -- just honest snapshots of what's working (or not) for one Idaho farmgirl. Use them to get a feel for what primal living looks like on a daily basis, as a jumping-off point if you're on the edge of taking the primal plunge, or as creative sparks for primal veterans.
Feel free to share your own tallies in the comments. We could all use a few fresh ideas!
Tuesday's Food as Fuel:
Scrambled eggs and broccoli. Cottage cheese with mixed fruit.
Spinach salad with canned salmon, garden tomatoes, black olives, and southwest dressing.
Two hard boiled eggs and crudites with yogurt-dill dip.
Trail mix (Nuts, dried fruit, and a few white chocolate & butterscotch chips that made me crave carbs for the rest of the day. Bad idea. Better to stick with just the nuts.)
Stifado (Beef simmered with red wine, onions, tomatoes, and warm spices. This is a Cooking Light recipe that I highly recommend. I made the recipe as written, with one exception: I didn't have beef broth, so I subbed vegetable broth plus a couple tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce.)
Coconut cream and 1/2 ounce extra dark chocolate.
2364 calories, 201 g carbs, 108 g fat, 161 g protein
3x max-out sets of push-ups, air squats, pull-ups, hanging leg raises, and overhead presses.
Farm chores and horse training.
Friday's Food as Fuel:
Spinach salad with 2 hard boiled eggs, avocado, jicama, carrot, broccoli, alfalfa sprouts, mushrooms, and lemon-dijon dressing made with olive oil.
Chicken cacchetore (no pasta -- just chicken, marinara, and parmisan) with garlic-sauteed zucchini. (Next time, I'll forgo the cheese, as it made me feel slightly bloated all afternoon.)
1.5 ounces of almonds and walnuts.
1/2 cup mango with coconut cream.
2129 calories, 179 g carbs, 114 g fat, 120 g protein
Rest day from formal workout.
4.5 miles brisk dog walks, with a bit of running thrown in for fun.
Extra farm chores (raking and shoveling) in anticipation of hay delivery.
Saturday's Food as Fuel:
Hay Day Hash with two eggs over easy.
Banana with almond butter.
Spinach salad with grilled chicken, avocado, broccoli, carrot, jicama, mushrooms, and lemon-dijon dressing.
Trail mix (Yes, the kind with the candy chips. In the midst of intense physical labor, that bit of sugar isn't a major problem, health-wise, but I still found it hard to put the stuff down. Good thing I ran out. I won't buy it again.)
Baked spaghetti squash with marinara.
Peach with coconut cream.
2314 calories, 194 g carbs, 131 g fat, 113 g protein
5 hours unloading and stacking 100-lb bales of hay. That'll do a girl in!
But, there are still chores waiting...
Thoughts on the week:
I'm still experimenting with the right number of carbs for me. Tuesday was quite high (in anticipation of stacking 2,800 lbs of hay on Wednesday morning), as was Saturday (more hay hauling!) I felt energetic all week -- more than when I kept carbs below 150 -- so it may be that this diet was appropriate for the week's effort.
But what's with all the dairy? Cottage cheese, yogurt, and some hard cheese? Sure, it totaled less than a cup of dairy all week, but that's more than I'd normally eat in a month. Blech. I feel better without the stuff, even though I'm of Swedish descent and not particularly lactose intolerant. It just makes me feel slightly bloated and "heavy."
This week's workouts were strange, too, considering the unusually high quantity of real-world labor in place of formal workouts. I feel like I didn't do enough squats and pull-ups, but that's a mental issue, not a physical one. You can bet your booties I did more than enough pushing, pulling, and lifting to compensate...and isn't functional strength what it's all about? I train most of the year so I can do real work when it needs to be done.