The Official Countdown has begun.
Just a few days remain in our Phase 2 (the part of Alchemist Eating where we go hardcore, following a strict version of paleo-primal eating—with NO cheats—for a full 30 days).
For the backstory, along with Phase 2 “food rules,” see our Lead-up post from a few weeks ago.
And for an updated account of our Phase 2 intentions—and outcomes—see our post from a few days back: Cook-up Lead-up: (Almost) On the Flip Side.
Now, as promised in that last post, the big question…
What’re we eating this week, especially after Day 30 on Tuesday???
Well, I’m diving into a tub of full-fat, plain Greek yoghurt, I’ll tell you that much. For. Sure. Oh, Fage, how I’ve missed you.
Meanwhile, Randy has big plans for Waffle Wednesday (paleo waffles, of course). Hopefully, I’ll still be around for this. (Yesterday, Randy looked lovingly into my eyes, a glazed look on his face, and said: “You look like a paleo waffle. I want to eat you.” Umm, thanks. I think.)
(Randy, Phase 2, Day 27)
Yeah, all that is true. Come Wednesday, Greek yoghurt and paleo waffles are So. Back. On. The. Table.
But, my (attempt at) jokes aside, transitioning out of Phase 2 in a mindful, gradual way is really important. This helps maintain any helpful shifts plus extends the exercise in self-exploration and awareness.
Now, to be clear, our transition is back to baseline primal parameters (NOT to Standard American Diet, or SAD, eating ways).
And yet, even here, transitioning gradually is still a huge part of “successful” Phase 2 implementation. Calls to mind the wise advice (can’t recall from whom) to “finish something as well, completely and carefully as you begin.”
Moving mindfully and slowly at this point of the Alchemist Eating process makes it possible to see, super-clearly, how reintroducing previous foods (and previous eating habits) affects body and mind.
So (sorry, Randy), but we won’t be ploughing through a plate of paleo waffles with maple syrup and wild abandon.
And the cool thing is, we don’t want to.
Teasing aside, even Randy admits his cravings for sugary fruit and paleo treats have greatly diminished over these past 30 days. And he doesn’t want to go back to how things were before.
So…sorry to disappoint, but meals this week won’t look terribly different from those during (or before) Phase 2. Most likely, we’ll fall back on our Recipe for an Easy Week (particularly after last week’s paleo fiesta (which, by the way, was fabulous).
Yes, I’ll return to (full-fat, plain) Greek yoghurt as part of my lunch…and Randy will indulge in a paleo waffle (or two or three) come Wednesday.
Small bites of hard, raw cheese and small squares of 85% dark chocolate will also be making a comeback. We’ll probably wait at least another week before incorporating fancier, “special occasion” paleo-primal treats (along the lines of those found on our Pinterest treat board.) For now, the dark chocolate and cheese will feel like more than enough.
Will the return to (primally approved) yoghurt, cheese and sweets result in more “dampness” (from a Chinese Medicine perspective)…including more mucus?
Absolutely. No doubt.
But since our intake of these will remain minimal, and excess “dampness” and mucus isn’t a huge issue for me, I’ve weighed the consequences and chosen the tradeoff.
Now, if I suffered from excess weight gain, severe nasal congestion, sinus problems, asthma or “allergies,” my choice would be different. And believe me, though I can “get away with” a little dairy, I’ve definitely made the choice to give up other things—including grains and most sweets. The consequences that come with those just aren’t worth it to me.
The key thing is understanding what particular foods do to us, weighing the tradeoffs, and making a conscious choice. Taking responsibility for our choices. Not with judgement, but with clear, honest recognition of cause, effect and our role in how things turn out.
In working with Alchemist Eating clients, we help with this, serving as supports and guides along the way. For most (but not all clients), part of this path winds through Phase 2…and yet those “hardcore 30 days” are framed within the larger context of our 4-phase program.
Ultimately, we’re not about maintaining a diet of restriction. We’re about long-term solutions that work for you, as an individual.
In Phase 3 of Alchemist Eating, we move from diet to lifestyle. At this point, we have a special focus on realistic strategies for sustained success.
Then, in Phase 4, we have periodic check-ins to help you stay on track. This follow-up is here for you—and we’re here to offer whatever you need at that point. (We also assess, together, any need to revisit Phase 1 or Phase 2…or to stay in Phase 3 a little longer.)
And, know what? Even Phase 1 is a super-cool place to hang. That’s where we figure out where you are and where you want to go—then plot a clear route to get you there.
It’s also the beginning stage of making supported changes to eating and lifestyle patterns while engaging in guided self-experimentation and focused exploration. This is a really, really important piece—so no pressure to move on too fast!
Still wondering what exactly, we advocate for your plate? Or what we’ll be eating this week (even after our return to baseline paleo-primal)?
A good place to start is our Recipe for an Easy Week, as well as our earlier post sharing 5 Tips for Success. You can also sign up for our free newsletter up top or in the sidebar…and keep checking back on Sundays, when we share cook-up plans.
Weighing any food “trade-offs” of your own? Please share them in the comments!
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