30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 8, 1 Week Thoughts


It’s been one week since I started the 30 Day Paleo Challenge.

30daypaleochallenge

I decided to do a weekly reflection, in case anyone else out there is doing a paleo challenge and wants to know how someone else is feeling (I know I do! So if you have a blog, share it with me!).  In case you need a recap of the week, here is:

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 & 4
Day  5, 6, & 7

Before I started the challenge, I read all these blogs with people saying things like “It’s only been a week but I already feel awesome!”  “I already notice a huge difference in my complexion” “I have so much energy!”

Well guys, not to be a debbie downer…

…but I going to go against the grain and say I totally do NOT feel awesome.  So let me elaborate a little more…

  • I’m hungry all the time.   Seriously.  I’m hungry ever 2 hours and ravenous every 3 hours.  Honestly, it’s just not fun.  Not to mention, a lot of times, I’ll eat and when I’m done, I feel like I haven’t actually eaten.  I’m not sure if I haven’t been eating enough fat or sweet potatoes, but this weekend it felt like a minute didn’t go by when I couldn’t have eaten a huge plate of food.
  • Because I’m hungry all the time, I think about food all the time.  As a foodie, I think about food a lot, and I’m totally ok with that.  But this is a different type of thinking.  I feel like I spend the day obsessing about what I’m going to eat next, which makes me feel like I’m on my way to an eating disorder.  It’s pretty sad when your boyfriend has to tell you to stop thinking about food…
  • My skin is NOT clearer.  I realize it’s only been a week, but I actually feel like I have more breakouts around my mouth/chin.  This might not be tied to diet, but just pointing it out.
  • I don’t have tons of energy.  I will say, the mid-afternoon sleepies have gone away.  So that’s a plus! But this weekend, I was just exhausted all the time.  Maybe because I just didn’t sleep well this weekend?  Not sure this has anything to do with diet.  I think I was just super sore from crossfit on Friday and couldn’t find a comfortable position all night.
  • I still want sugar.  Not all the time, actually I realized that having a real, filling meal makes me less likely to want something sweet afterward.  But last night, all I wanted was a brownie covered in ice cream.
  • I lost 1 lb.  I guess I can’t complain about this, since weight loss isn’t my number 1 goal, but for the amount of time that I’ve spent being hungry, you’d think I’d at least have lost more than 1 lb.

So obviously, 1 week is not long enough to truly reflect on whether or not this is a lifestyle I like.  Right now, most of my thoughts are probably a withdrawal symptom.

Unfortunately for me, the biggest negative is that because of the above points, I’ve been in a terrible mood lately (particularly this weekend).  Honestly this has been my biggest motivation to quit.  I’m generally a happy, positive person, but apparently when I’m hungry I turn into grumpy cat.

I’m not trying to discourage anyone from trying Paleo, but I want to paint a realistic picture based on my own experiences.  It hasn’t been all rainbows and unicorns over here.

That said, I’m not quitting yet.  Just writing down my thoughts and hoping it gets better.  How about you?  Have you tried a paleo challenge?  How’d you feel after 1 week?

Any thoughts? Please share!

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20 thoughts on “30 Day Paleo Challenge: Day 8, 1 Week Thoughts

  1. alexandra says:

    Welcome to Paleo! I haven’t had a chance to read through all your paleo challenge posts yet, but let me say that it gets easier! Also, if you’re hungry all the time, you’re probably not eating enough. Just because paleo eliminates certain foods doesn’t mean you should be depriving yourself of food. You’ll find that you need to eat much larger portions now that you’re eating real food and not relying on junk to fill you up. You’ll also probably see the weight loss accelerate (if you stick to the meats/veggies and stay away from the fruits/nuts/seeds) as you increase your calories. You’ve probably put yourself into starvation mode by not eating enough – hence the only 1lb weight loss. I look forward to reading more!

  2. Emily Dingmann (@nutritionisteat) says:

    Very interesting. I tried a similar challenge/diet/whatever you want to call it a while back and had similar feelings. I was thinking about food and what I couldn’t have all the time so it just didn’t work for me. I really like the idea of a paleo diet though…

    • Karla says:

      Yeah, this is one of the reason I really think this won’t work for me. I hate to sound like a quitter, but I don’t like the feeling of obsessiveness that I have right now. Food aside, I feel like that behavior is just unhealthy for me. Thanks for your feedback! It’s good to know I’m not the only one that has felt this way.

  3. Anna says:

    I actually LIKE reading this– all I ever see about Paleo is how amazing it is and how amazing people feel on it from Day One, and it just seems like SUCH a hard thing to do!! I would totally be struggling (and a grumpy, grumpy cat) too. Hang in there– I’m really impressed that you didn’t cave at the wedding; I totally would have!

    • Karla says:

      Agreed. I was so frustrated reading everyone’s positive reviews and feeling like total crap over here in my corner. I feel like honesty is the best policy 🙂

  4. michele bowman says:

    Thanks for popping over to my blog today 🙂 I thought I’d head over here to say ‘hi’ in person, and I’m glad I did. I’ve been thinking of trying out the Paleo diet for a while now, and I appreciate your candour. I will have to keep checking on your progress to see if you have any other helpful hints. Good luck!

  5. green1230 says:

    I just finished the Whole Living Action Plan with my college roomie (from two states away). It was a 21 day challenge and week one consisted of ONLY fruits, veggies and olive oil/spices for cooking. That’s it. Oh…and water. Super. Each week we added another group of foods back into our diet. By week 2 and 3 I really did feel great. I had TONS of energy unexpectedly, and I felt super “unbloated”….that’s the only way I know to describe it. But yea, week 1? The first part of Week 1 was hellacious. If I didn’t have specific recipes to follow that week, I might have died.

    GOOD LUCK TO YOU! At least with Paleo, you get to eat meat. So that’s a plus, right?? I’ve been keeping up with you since you started. I’ll be interested to see how you feel at the end! 🙂

    You can read my reviews on my blog. I haven’t posted the final 21-day followup yet, but I’m getting to it! http://milktruckblog.com/

    • green1230 says:

      Also, can I note that I normally don’t shamelessly self-advertise my blog like that in a comment, but I felt you may actually want to read about the detox I did since it was related…. haha

      • Karla says:

        Thanks so much for your feedback! I’m definitely interested in checking out your challenge (I saw it a while ago in the twitter world!). Yours sounds WAYYY more difficult! You’re a star for getting that done! Thanks again!!!

  6. snacksnarkbark says:

    Ugh, Paleo sounds like a b***h but thanks for painting a clearer picture on it because I feel like I only hear the good things about it. I guess 1 lb is 1 lb but I find whenever I cut certain things out, I obsess about them and what I’m going to have next. Good lucj!

    • Karla says:

      Agreed. I think the biggest issue is that I feel constrained so of course all I can think about is what I can’t have: cookies and brownies.

  7. Wayne Lin says:

    My sister’s biggest complaint on Paleo was also that she was always hungry even though it appeared she was consistently stuffing her face. I’ll be following to see how it turns out for you as you progress 🙂

  8. vtswap says:

    Hey there- I have to agree that I don’t feel amazing after doing Paleo for a week and a half. I thought weight would be flying off me by now and I’d feel more energized etc, but I’m stillll waiting for that!

    i do have to say though that I am extremely proud of being able to say that I haven’t eaten any processed foods in 10 days now which is a HUGE accomplishment. Usually I can’t stay away from sweets and I did really good by not even thinking about eating a cupcake at work on monday as well as at a cafe I went to tonight.

    I definitely get hungry at times and pretty cranky when my hubby cooks dinner and I can only eat the turkey burgers (nope on the potatoes and no on the green beans). But I find that I’m staying pretty full by just eating the meat, fruits, and veggies. I agree with someone above by saying you’re probably not eating enough if you’re hungry. That’s one of the huge motivators for me is that I can eat anytime (certain foods at least) and I stay pretty full. I also really enjoy the fact that I don’t have to follow a set meal plan OR count anything.

    Stick with it- you can do it!!!!

    • Karla says:

      That’s awesome! Congratulations!
      Now that I’m past that hump (on day 10) it’s gotten a lot easier. I agree, it’s nice to not have to follow a meal plan. But honestly, I think I like eating everything in moderation better. But oh well, it’s a nice experiment.

      Best of luck! Thanks for checking in!

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