Sunday, 1 February 2015

Paleo Nutrition

I played in a beach volleyball tournament this weekend, my first since going paleo in the summer, 2014. In the spring, I had begun to have severe stomach pain and didn't know what was up. I did an elimination diet where I got so tired from cooking, my attention drifted while making homemade mayonnaise and I blended my finger. No stitches needed, thankfully.  While that wasn't pleasant, the diet did help me figure out that grains and I, we just don't mix. Enter paleo. Well, modified paleo. Because I still eat cheese. Can't give that shit up. And rice, although there is debate about that in the paleo community, from what I gather.  

My daily nutrition plan has been working well for me. I eat a lot of vegetables and meat, a bit of fruit and nuts, and a little bit of cheese. Generally, I only have a starchy carb, like sweet potato, squash, or rice, at dinner. Day to day, my energy is great. But, lately, as I have picked up my hiking adventures, weight lifting, and volleyball playing, I have been bonking when I go for an hour or more. Especially this weekend, where 7 games of volleyball left me low on fuel mid-way through the tournament. 

I've come up with three mistakes I made this weekend, and what I need to do to support my energy for activities where I am out for more than an hour. After all, I'm no longer sixteen (I'm 37) but magically think that I can treat my body just like when I was a teenager. 

Mistake #1: Not enough carbs!

I didn't eat any starchy carbs at breakfast on the day of the tournament. I should have included a sweet potato, and perhaps an energy gel mid-way through the day. Fruit and chocolate were my fueling snacks for the day, and that didn't cut it. I also didn't have any safe carbs at night, so that was poor planning on my part. 

Mistake #2: Dehydration

I was dehydrated the day before, when I should have been ensuring that my body was well hydrated. Obviously this carried into the next day, when I needed adequate hydration. 

Mistake #3: Lack of Sleep

It's so hard to go to bed when there's Twitter. It's a slight addiction, along with CandyCrush, I won't pretend otherwise. But the older I get, the more I need my sleep to ensure I can do the physical activity I love. 

Here's to learning from my mistakes and moving forward. I am hoping adequate nutrition, hydration, and sleep can take me to the next level of my hiking and adventure goals!