Exercise ability decreased since start of whole30 - day 23


Breezy123

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Hi, 

 

I'm not an athlete but I walk a lot and do an intense work out on my bike twice a week. My exercise ability has seriously decreased since the start of my whole30 and I'm on day 23 now. I've also been getting headaches and a fuzzy sort of head feeling for the past 5 days, I only got this a tiny bit on day 2 so its frustrating that it has come back this far in. I have been trying to add in carbohydrate high veg like potatoes, this helped with one bike ride last week but I still had a lower ability than before whole30, and today I ate potatoes with lunch but have still felt really lacking in energy throughout the day. I also eat sweet potatoes with many meals. Seems like I get headaches when I eat potatoes, I didn't really get carb flu so I don't know if eating carbs has a similar effect. 

 

I have tried adding in more fat too, I did this at the beginning because I was hungry all the time and it helped then but I don't know what else I can do now seeing as I eat as much fat as in the meal plan. And when I have days where I end up eating bigger meals I still don't have better energy. 

 

I tried having a pre-work out meal of a boiled egg and this did not sit well in my tummy at all so I've had tiny portions of tuna or potato. I didn't mind feeling low in energy for the first week but now I feel like the diet is not worth loosing my ability to exercise! I know in the book it says to focus on other things I have gained but I don't really feel any different, sleep is the same in fact I have felt more tired during the day, post work out recovery is the same, mood is worse (I'm cranky and craving bread!)

 

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Hi Breezy

 

If potatoes are causing headaches you could be sensitive to nightshades which may deplete your energy as your body struggles to process them.

Can you give us a run down of what you've eaten over the last 3-4 days, given specifics about portion sizes, and what types of veg, along with liquid intake, sleep/stress/activity levels. That way we'll be better equipped to help you troubleshoot...

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Today - M1: 2 poached eggs, half an avocado with olive oil, beetroot, whole grilled pepper and mayo

M2: Curry made with coconut oil, tuna, turnip, carrots and loads of canned coconut milk (it was very oily). Apple

M3: Poached fillet of salmon, tartare sauce, asparus wrapped in 3 slices of thin pancetta, a small sweet potato spiralised

Tuesday - M1: 2 poached eggs, spiralised sweet potato, beetroot, half avocado with olive oil

M2: Large portion of nut roast, 4 roast potatoes, whole carrot grated, mayo. Apple

M3: Prawns in chimichurri sauce, zoodles

Monday - M1: 2 eggs florentine, hollandaise sauce, spinach, half aubergine, tomatoes

M2: Curry made with coconut oil, tomatoes, potatoes, and aubergine, cauliflower rice, 2 small potato rostis. 

M3: Nut roast, roast potatoes, carrots roasted in ghee, samphire. Strawberries and raspberries (had friends round!)

Sunday: M1: 2 eggs florentine, mushrooms, tomatoes

M2: 2 boiled eggs, whole can of tuna and mayo, grated carrot.

M3: Veg curry same as above, cauliflower rice.

 

 

I'm pescatarian, 168cm female, approx 60kgs (I don't own a scale!) I always drink a lot of water to the point that most days my pee is clear. I sleep well, 7-8 hours per night and I'm not stressed. I walk about 40 mins per day and cycle 7-8 miles in 30 mins on a turbo trainer twice a week. Quite active in my job, spend about half the day on my feet and the other half in the office. Thanks!

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Considering how active you are - you are not eating enough.  When eggs are your sole protein they should be the number of whole eggs you can hold in one hand - for most people that is at least 3 to 4.

 

Also consider adding a pre and post work out meal.  Pre work out is protein and fat and post should be lean protein and starchy carb.

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I thought you might say that, it seems to be the answer for a lot of problems. I'm wary of eating more eggs because I'm constipated, I think this is a medical thing rather than diet and I'm taking laxatives and having tests by my doctor. I will add in tuna to my 1st meal and make sure I eat more fish at every meal, I did this today but still felt really tired and lacking energy, I slept on the train to and from work and never do that, I didn't try to exercise today and walking upstairs feels hard. It feels like I haven't got through fat adaptation yet even at day 25 although I have noticed that the hunger I get is different to before, now I can manage better if I need to have a late lunch so thats great. 

 

I am enjoying the diet because of the hunger thing, getting over my need for sugar and being able to eat really tasty meals with lots of fat. So I will probably carry on for more than 30 days, but this lack of energy is concerning me. 

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I am still feeling bad at day 27 and had this really weird thing happen to me today. I went for a big walk yesterday, 10 miles and hilly. Overall I felt good doing moderate exercise while I was walking along the flat but up hill was hard, I think it would have been easier for me pre-whole30. I ate increased protein and actually less veg so that I could fit the protein in but this morning I felt awful. I actually tried to go on my bike but knew it would be futile so I didn't bother, then I came over all dizzy and physically exhausted and had to lie down. I got my boyfriend to cook me loads of potatoes and ate all of them, 7 small ones roasted, then I slept for 2 hours and now feel better. Im guessing I did something wrong with eating but please help me.

Heres what I ate:

Friday: M1- 2 eggs, half can of tuna, sweet potato, beetroot

M2- tuna and turnip curry with coconut milk, apple

M3- Mexican tuna boats, sweet potato fried, broccoli

Saturday (walking day) M1- tahini egg salad with 3 eggs, broccoli

M2- 2 boiled eggs, whole can of tuna, carrots

Snack- apple which gave me indigestion and couldn't eat for 3 hours

M3- 2 pieces of haddock, roasted potato wedges, tomatoes, chicory

Today: M1- 3 fried eggs, half can of tuna, few carrot sticks

Extra meal due to exhaustion- 7 potatoes roasted

M2- 2 eggs, half can of tuna, sweet potato, avocado.

Haven't been able to go on my bike for a few days which is frustrating.

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Other than the avocado in the last meal you have listed I see no mention of any fat.

Fat is just as important as protein in your meals as it gives a good slow release, sustained energy. The oils you are using for cooking are pretty negligible so it does no harm to add an additional source - it's really hard to overdo it as it is so satiating.

The potatoes will have made you feel better because you'll have replaced depleted muscle glycogen - if you know you are going to do a hilly walk like this in the future it may help to increase your starchy veg intake on the day prior to the walk too. Muscle glycogen does not normalise on it's own on a daily basis so if you're depleting your supplies it's important to replace them.

I see no mention of any pre or postWO meal here either - the pre you may not have needed, but the post would have aided in recovery for sure - don't short change your body of food/fuel that it needs.

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I am adding in lots of fat, I have mayo with most meals and make sure to use a lot of cooking fat, like a thumb or two's worth and scrape it out the pan.

Before whole30 I was mostly vegetarian so I was relying on carbohydrates for every meal eg. Muesli, bread, pasta or rice or potatoes for tea with lots of vegetables but little protein. It didn't tide me through to the next meal which is one of the reasons I started whole30 but it did give me enough energy to exercise.

I guess I can help by eating potatoes the day before exercise but you can't always plan like that and sometimes I go away for a week of walking (harder than I did yesterday) so I don't know if I'd be able to cope with that.

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I started the first two weeks of my first Whole 30 similar to yours. I was eating a lot of starchy veggies, like every meal starchy veggies and I was feeling horribly bloated and lethargic. 

 

What I did was replace the starchy veggies with non-starchy veggies and added in a probiotic and a digestive enzyme (I have small intestine damage due to un-diagnosed gall bladder disease). 

 

For M1 I eat: 3 scrambled eggs, 1 1/2 cups of cabbage or broccoli/carrot slaw sauteed, a chicken apple sausage and half an avocado

M2: 1 1/2 palm sized portions of what we had for dinner the last night or a 7oz can of tuna with Chesapeake mayo and bok choy and another veggie

M3: 1 1/2 palm sized portions of meat, 1 1/2 cups of veggies (normally either brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower or greens) fist sized portion of a starchy veggie (either beets, turnip, squash or sweet/regular potatoe) and another half of an avocado

 

Now that I'm starting another Whole 30 and incorporating exercise I will eat a hard boiled egg before I walk out the door, and when I come in I'll take a few bites of a starchy veggie and I need to find a quick protein source. 

 

The probiotic and digestive enzyme help to keep my regular. 

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I thought you might say that, it seems to be the answer for a lot of problems. I'm wary of eating more eggs because I'm constipated, I think this is a medical thing rather than diet and I'm taking laxatives and having tests by my doctor. I will add in tuna to my 1st meal and make sure I eat more fish at every meal, I did this today but still felt really tired and lacking energy, I slept on the train to and from work and never do that, I didn't try to exercise today and walking upstairs feels hard. It feels like I haven't got through fat adaptation yet even at day 25 although I have noticed that the hunger I get is different to before, now I can manage better if I need to have a late lunch so thats great. 

 

I am enjoying the diet because of the hunger thing, getting over my need for sugar and being able to eat really tasty meals with lots of fat. So I will probably carry on for more than 30 days, but this lack of energy is concerning me. 

I wonder if you have ever been tested for thyroid issues. Sounds like hypo thyroid or even hashimotos best of luck to you!

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Thanks for all your answers. I just had the results of my thyroid test and it is normal. They said I'm slightly low in calcium. I wonder if that's caused by lack of diary and fortified foods. They are testing if its caused by low vitamin D. 

 

I was finally able to go on my bike this week and I'll do it again tomorrow morning. It was an average workout but hard to start with and then got easier, I wonder if this is a consequence of running off fat? It took me a good 3 days to recover from that walk last weekend in terms of fatigue and even now I am only back to normal, no increased energy and now at day 32. I don't really feel like 30 days was long enough to change many things (although I came from eating healthily albeit running off carbs) so I'll carry on for as long as I can. 

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Do you eat nuts of any kind?  Nut butters are great for a calorie punch and sit well in my stomach.  I enjoy 1/2 a banana with a couple tablespoons of sunflower seed butter before a longer workout.  I add raisins and sometime almonds to a salad.  I love mashed sweet potato for breakfast with shredded dried coconut on top (along with my proteins of course). 

 

Also, you should look into the benefits of magnesium.  It is a mineral most of us are not getting enough of and it can both help with clarity and regularity and it helps your body to process and benefit from the calcium that you are getting!  Just don't buy the cheap stuff in the store, or you will have way to harsh of a laxative reaction.  Research the best type for you.  http://www.naturalnews.com/046401_magnesium_dietary_supplements_nutrient_absorption.html#

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Thanks for all your answers. I just had the results of my thyroid test and it is normal. They said I'm slightly low in calcium. I wonder if that's caused by lack of diary and fortified foods. They are testing if its caused by low vitamin D. 

 

From someone who is currently going through this, I suggest you seek out a Hormone Replacement Specialist. I come from a long line of women with thyroid problems, and have had many of the symptoms, but all of my tests came back in the normal range. I love my internist, she is amazing and has helped me through a lot of health issues, but I just didn't believe that there was nothing wrong with my thyroid. I found a HRS and she ran tests that are out of the norm and found out that I did have a thyroid issue. While all of my levels were within normal, my T4 was at the high end of normal, my T3 was at the bottom of the normal range, and my Reverst T3 was high. Most normal Dr's don't even test for Reverse T3. What this all means is that my body isn't properly converting T4 to T3, and T3 is what's used for energy.

 

I was put on low doses of Thyroid meds, and have been re-calibrated and am seeing amazing results. The thyroid meds coupled with the W30 have worked wonders for me. 

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I have been reading a lot recently about fat adaptation and not eating starchy veggies and fruits before the run.  I guess a banana isn't the best idea after all.  Hmmm...  just nut butter? 

Nope. Banana = no beuno.

 

Aim for protein & fat before training - soft boiled eggs work well (MUCH easier to digest than hard boiled), or yes some nut butter will work in a pinch...

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Nope. Banana = no beuno.

 

Aim for protein & fat before training - soft boiled eggs work well (MUCH easier to digest than hard boiled), or yes some nut butter will work in a pinch...

Thanks!  long-standing misconception I'm afraid.  I kept reading about people doing dates all the time and figured a banana was just as good.  oops!  :) 

 

Would you say it is better to run in a fasting state or with protein and fat though?  I see some advice for both.  does it depend on the duration?  Right now I run between 3-7 miles at a time, taking up to 75 minutes, running mostly in the late afternoon and following my run with a regular meal.  Later this summer I will work up to half marathon running several long runs in the 2 hour range.  Those are the ones I used the banana and nut butter for last summer, running first thing in the morning, drinking water. 

 

I know some of it is experimentation, but I am reading that one lady in particular had a lot of success at this duration running in a fasting state, drinking coconut water on the long runs.  Is a fasting state better, but the protein and fat the recommended fuel IF you need something, or is it better to do protein and fat regardless for longer duration?

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  • 4 weeks later...

I am not a moderator but from all the comments I have seen, a preWO snack is optional, a personal choice, depending on whether you need it or not, what time of day, when your last meal was, etc.  The postWO is the one you don't want to go without.

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