Training and diet week 1 : Ketosis.

Well its day 3 of my combined diet and exercise first stage : this morning for the first time i woke up without back pain and able to get off the bed without some odd moves to get upright.

I started the dietary side on sunday evening just as a warm-up and since then have been eating high protein, medium fat and low carbs, i have also massively reduced overall calorie intake to achieve an Atkins-esque induction phase with the deliberate aim of inducing fat metabolism as evidenced by ketosis.  I have been in ketosis since monday afternoon and apart from a couple of wobbles have dealt with it pretty well. Because of the food i am eating, protein and fat mainly, i’ve not had much hunger and very few cravings : i have wanted something high-carb several times but that’s simply psychological craving on my part because if anything i am carb addicted !.

I will weigh mid-week tomorrow, in fact i will be weighing naked and dry twice a week now and am recording/graphing it so i have hit total nerd zone as well.  I know from the basic science that the first few kilos will be a lot of water loss but there should also be the beginnings of fat loss as well and obviously the thing i have to watch for is avoiding muscle loss along with that.

On the exercise side i have continued with my back recovery, remember that my aim is to be doing proper exercise within 2 weeks (10 days to go) so i have been doing ‘work as exercise’ already and done some specific body weight moves as well : on that one i have been ‘planking’ and no thats no reference to planking up a boat but maintaining a ‘plank’ position which for me is one step back from doing push-ups (press-ups) as in ‘get down and give me 5’.  Today i might see what happens when i attempt a press or 2 as being able to do them means i can go back to body-weight exercise and that is something i can do anywhere.   On the work as exercise i have been finding stuff to do that forces me into back work, first useful one during the rain was to transfer lots of water from my collecting butts into another set of tanks in the garden : on day 1 i think i moved 200 litres and then another 400 on day 2.  Yesterday i messed around with moving soil in containers so that was lift/carrry some distance and empty….all useful work.  Yesterday i also worked on training ‘assets’ so found the olympic bar and the plates, scraped and sanded rust off the bar and started scrubbing the wooden deck where i will be doing my hero stuff.  That is a simple part of organising stuff so that i am ready to use my home gym again.

The logistics side is where i am struggling a bit : the logical move now would be to set aside specific time to do free weights workouts without using 3 and 4 hours out of the day to get to the gym and do the long routines that i used to do.  My initial plan was to rejoin the posh gym which is just over the road from the hospital and do a short and simple workout before my shift : that would mean a small adjustment to my working day as my shift starts at 8 but i am often there around 0715 so i could easily move that forward a bit by leaving home a bit earlier, park at the hospital, walk over the road and workout (the gym opens at 0630).  Fine and dandy except that the gym membership would be £60 a month which might be worth it but becomes difficult if i start the Taurus project.  Another option is to do a workout here with the basic kit i have an leave for work later which then creates a problem with driving, traffic and parking at the hospital.  The gym option is more ideal in that they have all the kit although there is a hell of a lot that i don’t use, their swimming pools (2) are also great.  At home i can only do simple weights work unless i invest the money in some more kit.  What i can’t afford to do is end up with 3 lots of monthly standing costs of boat 1, project boat and gym membership…that all drains the funds for an actual project.

Back to the diet side last and to try to formulate and answer about diet food choices, GI problems and what i am doing right now ie deliberate ketosis.    As some visitors here will know i work in healthcare and at times have known a fair bit about the relevant soft tissue physiology relevant to the areas i have worked in , thus : brain, heart, lungs, liver and kidneys etc , but have never had much interest in the gut.  That’s a bit different now in that i now work in endoscopy and we spend all day and every day studying the inside of each end of the gastrointestinal tract….so i take an interest.    My basic attitude to humans and food has always been that we are a semi-evolved chimpanzee (some more evolved than others and i can feel a story about that coming your way) and an omnivore.   We seem to have evolved to be able to cope with a wide diet, from meat and fish , through fruit, veg , nuts , seeds and grains.  There are some genetic outliers in that peoples that haven’t been exposed to a farming based high carbohydrate diet don’t do well when they start eating it : and the evidence base is what happens to peoples such as the inuit, many native american/canadian ‘indians’ who have horrible problems with type 2 diabetes on a western diet and people such as the Maori who immediately become morbidly obese on the same.  The problem with’diet’ from a medical and scientific stance was summed up well by a doctor i worked with for a while and in one of his books called ‘Bad Science’ in which he pretty well took apart the mass of pseudo-science and fad-ism of the diet industry.  Diet and food is in no way simple, even a basic study of metabolic pathways is incredibly complex.  I have absolutely no regard at all for whichever celebrity is touting this weeks fad diet….its all bollocks basically.  My attitude to food throughout my life has been pretty well to eat whatever is put in front of me unless i really find it inedible or that i am allergic to it (i am allergic to shellfish). Some things i just strongly dislike so avoid them.  The only time i learnt anything technical about food was when we were exposed to Jane’s excellent food aboard the big yellow boat and that did change my food perceptions towards ‘good’ food.  As a student nurse i ate everything i could get my hands on or could afford ! and as an outdoorsman often have had to rely on high carb foods just so that i can carry them and have enough intake to get through long days carrying heavy load.  One influence is that i grew up in the country and had some exposure to ‘wild’ foods : my grandfather and uncle were shooters so we often ate local game and i still enjoy that today.

Stephen Mundane writes :  ”

Steve, why not get yourself a set of resistance bands — the modern Bullworker? You can use them anywhere, could take ’em to work with you even, they work and are cheap.
Working away form home a lot, they’ve been invaluable to me for keeping strong over the past few years.
I have actually got some resistance bands and did use them in my training in the past : mainly for rotation-resistance work. I have never really got on with them though. in the next post about training i intend to talk about different training assets that are cheap and effective and also about body weight exercise which can be done anywhere and with no kit whatsoever.    When at one time i was planning an ocean voyage with the Frances it was my intention to do body weight exercise on the boat : i have a very good book on that subject too.

1 Comment

  1. Steve, why not get yourself a set of resistance bands — the modern Bullworker? You can use them anywhere, could take ’em to work with you even, they work and are cheap.

    Working away form home a lot, they’ve been invaluable to me for keeping strong over the past few years.


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