Time to be real with ya’ll…. The last two days have been terrible. Yesterday was day 4. I was extremely tired, achy, and I had a headache all day. I was able to get through a HIIT training session in the morning; but things went downhill from there.
I felt so crappy that it was hard to eat correctly. For breakfast, I had my normal coffee with grass-fed butter, 2 eggs cooked in olive oil, with Colby jack cheese and avocado. For lunch, I could barely stomach the salmon and spring mix smothered in MCT oil. I didn’t eat until much later when all I had were almonds and some slices of cheese. The other reason I know my body and brain are struggling is because I went ham on some natural peanut butter…. More than likely knocking me out of ketosis and making it clearly apparent just how restrictive the diet can be. I really miss fruit, vegetables, hummus, toast, sandwiches, you name it!
The keto strips continue to show that I have moderate ketones in my urine. I know the main problem is that I am eating too much protein to truly get into ketosis. I have really struggled to eat high fat without having too much protein – mainly due to the fact that I do not eat beef or pork. Many people in ketosis are eating a large amount of beef... I’m just not willing to go there.
Today (day 5) has been interesting as well. I woke up not hungry AT ALL. I went for a run and felt like absolutely sh*t! I still wasn’t hungry after my run, so I got started with my day with my coffee and grass-fed butter. I went along with my day until about noon, when I had some mixed nuts. I also had some 4% cottage cheese with the natural peanut butter (I did not go crazy today) and a piece of string cheese. That is all I have eaten today… I have zero appetite. I am more than likely not in ketosis, however, because I enjoyed a wonderful beer with a friend later in the day. I only had one, but that is all it takes! It was totally worth it. No regrets :)
My husband and I are now heading up north to spend the weekend with lots of family, good food, drinks, and some treats I’m sure. I am not going to pressure myself to continue with the experiment. I am going to enjoy the weekend and not restrict myself. I’ll report back on how much better I feel in a later blog :)
Not much more to report on today from yesterday, except that the ketone strips show that I seem to be producing less ketones today. I attribute this to eating a little bit too much protein yesterday. I am having a really hard time not eating protein with the fat!
I did feel tired this morning and woke up about 45 minutes later than I normally do. Once I did flop out of bed I felt okay and was able to get to the gym for a workout, again with no problems. I was even able to do several all-out sprints. Here is what my food looked like today:
Pre-workout – black coffee with a tiny splash of reduced sugar creamer and some grass-fed butter
Breakfast – 3 whole eggs cooked in olive oil with Colby jack cheese, blue cheese, topped with avocado
Lunch – 3 oz. Atlantic salmon cooked in olive oil, with a cup of spring mix, topped with blue cheese and more olive oil
Dinner – 3 oz. walleye cooked in olive oil with pan fried zucchini in butter
Snacks – 1 serving (about 24) almonds and 2 small cucumbers with cream cheese. I also had 1 small bite of 4% cottage cheese and 1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter
No headache today, but I did feel a little bit of brain fog. I had a couple presentations at a local gymnastics club that I work with and did find that I was messing up more words than usual. I’m not sure if this was caused from the diet or not! Let’s move on to day 4!
Let’s talk about day 1 and 2 of my keto diet adventure! Today (Monday) was actually day 2 because I ended up starting yesterday… which was interesting. Again, I am not doing this diet to reach any goal or to lose weight. I am simply doing an experiment on myself to see how keto makes me feel, as there is a great deal of debate about the benefits and challenges of this eating style.
Remember this diet is about 75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbohydrate; so almost all of the foods I am eating are very high in fat. Day 1 (yesterday) was kind of a mess, because I didn’t know exactly what I was doing. Here is how it played out:
Breakfast: 3 eggs with cheese and butter, topped with avocado
Lunch: Spring mix, avocado, almonds, and pistachios topped with MCT oil
Dinner: 3 more eggs with cheese and butter; a couple pieces of turkey pepperoni
Snacks: almonds, pistachios, 4% fat cottage cheese, and natural peanut butter
I really didn’t feel any different than when I eat normally; however, I did have a couple moments of panic thinking about all the high fat foods I was eating. I went to bed feeling fairly full, due to the satiating effect of eating such high fat foods all day.
The next morning, I was able to get up at my normal time and get to the gym for a workout without any problems. I did have one problem. I didn’t have my normal time in the bathroom…. I am usually pretty regular. I did end up taking some fiber capsules and was able to go later on. The keto eating style can end up being pretty low in fiber, so I knew a fiber supplement was probably going to be a must.
Here is what I ate today:
Breakfast: spring mix, 1 oz. baked chicken breast, ½ avocado; smothered in MCT oil
Lunch: same as breakfast. I ran out of eggs, so I made one big meal and split it into two for breakfast and lunch.
Dinner: 3 oz. walleye soaked in butter, mushrooms stuffed with cream cheese, blue cheese, more cheese, and more butter.
Snacks: 2 servings of almonds and 2 slices pepper jack string cheese
After both breakfast and lunch today I had a mild stomach ache for about 5 minutes… I’m not sure if it was psychological because the slimy MCT oil lettuce is so disgusting or if my body was really rejecting it. I was also pretty tired today, but nothing too terrible. The headache hit me at about 7:00 p.m. This is pretty typical of what people call the “keto flu”, I am just surprised it happened so fast! Around 4:00 p.m. I did test the ketones in my urine by using a ketone strip to see if I was even getting close… it says that I am.
I'll be back tomorrow to check in about day 3. Stay tuned!
Allison Tropf, MS, RD, CSSD
Allison is a Sports Dietitian in Michigan. She enjoys helping others reach their nutrition and fitness goals through reliable and trustworthy recommendations.
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