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Leez72

Tired all the time - advice needed

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Bare with me this may take a while, my partner and I have been eating real food since the turn of the year, following pretty much the low-carb, medium protein, high fat model as much as possible. Our problem is that we both lack enough energy for exercise a lot of the time and are not sure what we are doing wrong.

 

We both have sedentary Mon-Fri, 9-5 jobs and so try to counteract that by walking at least 90 mins each a day and more at weekends.  We have a dog so this is easily done and I walk some of my journey to and from work.  Twice a week we do a 40 minute primal fitness session of bodyweight squats, push-up, pull-ups and planks.  On the weekend we generally fit in a 20 minute sprint session before breakfast on one of the days, we also do 1 weights session of squats, deadlifts, kettle bell press and chest press and we'll try to fit in a 30 minute bike ride and possibly a bodyweight tabata session. 

 

On Mondays and Tuesdays we both generally feel too tired to do anything more than our walks but would like to be able to fit in some more weight training sessions but just can't physically do it.

 

We have just started our first full Whole30 on Monday and plan to continue this throughout August.  I want to know how we can adjust the amount we eat so that we can start to feel this magic energy that everyone talks about.

 

A typical days menu would consist of:

 

Meal 1 - 2 poached eggs, a small portion of protein such as ground beef and left over veggies from the night before, for example this morning we had leeks, cabbage and some sweet potato mash.  Every day we have half an avo with meal 1.

 

Meal 2 - Roast chicken breast with the skin, lots of lettuce and some cabbage, a tomato, a bit of cucumber, half an avo, homemade mayonnaise.

 

Meal 3 - Steamed Salmon fillet, steamed broccoli, greens, carrot.

 

Your advice would be appreciated.

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I found myself low in energy for the first few days, but not enough to skip workouts. Being tired wouldn't have stopped me though...I go to the gym regardless and work as hard as i can.

Your meals look pretty good - you haven't mentioned pre/postWO meals though. Could having something before you work out make a difference? (Fat and protein)

PostWO carbs/protein is important to refuel and help you recover

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There is no one size fits all but if you follow the template, keep fruits to a minimum and eat starchy veg at least once a day and get more than 8 hours sleep you should be able to have enough energy to do what you want after you are fully fat adapted (allow 2-3 weeks for this depending on your prior sugar/fruit/dairy/legume/alcohol level

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Try moving your sweet potato to the post workout meals. Personally I don't believe very active people need to be very low carb. If you aren't feeling good and can't do the things you want to do, experiment with adding in more starchy vegetables , particularly after workouts. The amount of carbs we take in on the whole 30 is so substantially less than the average active person that I don't think they will put you out of fat burning during your workouts. This is my take anyway. I have experimented with different macros and have found that for someone like me, and you, training hard, carbs are not only necessary but help performance and mood and strength gains. I have been paleo for about 12 months now and I still adjust and experiment within the guidelines. There is no one size fits all. I eat a fair bit of fruit too, it isn't hindering my fat loss and feeling good and performing well during training is a priority for me.good luck : ))

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How are you feeling later on in the week on the Thursday and Friday?

 

The fact that you are pooped out Monday and Tuesday tells me you are not recovering enough after your workouts. As Amberino says, you do not mention what you are doing post workout at the weekend but certainly get some sweet potatoes or similar starchy carbs in there. The Whole30 is not necessarily a low carb diet and you can adjust as you need to especially if you are very active and it sounds like you are doing some pretty demanding exercise there.

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Thanks for all of the swift responses.  I think we'll try adding in some pre/post WO meals on the weekend and try for some more starchy veg each day as at the moment we eat mostly green veg.  I've been thinking that we've maybe gone too low carb so will play around with this for a couple of weeks and see if things improve.

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Thanks for all of the swift responses.  I think we'll try adding in some pre/post WO meals on the weekend and try for some more starchy veg each day as at the moment we eat mostly green veg.  I've been thinking that we've maybe gone too low carb so will play around with this for a couple of weeks and see if things improve.

 

Nice one! Let us know how you get on. Hopefully this will improve those "Monday Blues" :)

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Liza, remember its not designed to be a low carb lifestyle - you'll likely be having less carbs than most people on a "standard" diet full of bread/grains etc, but you shouldn't be restricting them to the point of near non-existence :)

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Nice one! Let us know how you get on. Hopefully this will improve those "Monday Blues" :)

 

Liza, remember its not designed to be a low carb lifestyle - you'll likely be having less carbs than most people on a "standard" diet full of bread/grains etc, but you shouldn't be restricting them to the point of near non-existence :)

 

Thanks guys, I'll let you know how we get on.

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So it's a week later and we've upped our starchy veg intake considerably and added in a couple of preWO meals over the weekend and for a Monday morning I'm feeling quite good!  The dead feeling that I've had in my legs for some weeks has pretty much gone and although my legs are stiff after yesterdays workout they don't feel like lead anymore.  We've also added in a magnesium supplement to help with night cramps and that seems to be working wonders too.  It's day 8 of our Whole30 and I'm starting to feel so much better.  Thanks again for all of the advice and info, this forum really is a great place for help and inspiration. :D

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What magnesium supps are you using? I would like to try them, I get restless legs and it disturbs my sleep. So glad you are feeling better : )

 Hi, I bought Natural 226g Calm Magnesium Supreme Powder through Amazon.  It's quite expensive but so far I think it's worth it.  I hate having restless legs so know how you feel.

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I don't know about others out there but reading your workout schedule made me tired, even the thought of organizing it! Are you getting enough sleep? Do you know how your cortisol production is doing? I'd also say eat a bit more since you are doing a good bit of activity. Sleep, sleep, sleep! If you are tired, trust that. (I'd say).

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I don't know about others out there but reading your workout schedule made me tired, even the thought of organizing it! Are you getting enough sleep? Do you know how your cortisol production is doing? I'd also say eat a bit more since you are doing a good bit of activity. Sleep, sleep, sleep! If you are tired, trust that. (I'd say).

It does sound a lot when it's written down like that but really it's not all that bad.  The walking is just a normal part of my day so I don't really consider it exercise.  I wouldn't have a clue about my cortisol production, how is that even measured?  I'm UK based so it's not something we can get done on the NHS as far as I know.  Definately agree with the getting more sleep though and for the first time ever we turned off the alarm at the weekend and just woke up naturally (which incidentally wasn't much later than usual but so much better without the shrillness of the alarm).  Thanks for your thoughts. :)

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High cortisol usually shows up as fat accumulation around the mid section. The good news is that the whole 30 helps. Also lots of sleep, high intake of vitamin c ( berries are great) and never forget to have rest days. Lol, my training volume is as high and sometimes higher than yours but I just simply love it too much to cut down : )

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