Keto AF! (30 Day Keto Challenge by Perfit)

By now I’m pretty sure you’ve at least heard of the “Keto diet” or heard of someone saying they are doing ‘Keto’ for quick weight loss.  It seems to be gaining some huge traction over the past year or so. The truth is the “Ketogenic diet” was designed as a response to epileptic patients in French hospitals. The original remedy was to have patients fast completely (no food or drink other than water) for up to 30 days. Results were astounding. As research in 1911 continued, they deduced that fasting caused what are called “ketones” to be developed as a natural response to the body being without carbs.

What is Keto?

Keto, short for Ketosis/Ketogenic is a metabolic state that the body enters when it has depleted it’s glygocen/carbohydrate stores.  This happens in around 2-3 days of having less than 50g net carbs(or less).  At this point the body begins developing ketones, and using fat as a primary energy source instead of the quick energy source, carbs.

How did I start a Keto Challenge?

I was wasting my life scrolling through Instagram, and I stumbled on @aroperfit keto challenge, that was to start June 15. Figured I’d try it out see how I respond to it and use the guidance to get through the 30 days.  Simple right? Definitely… not. 😊  Thanks to  Aaron West aka Aro-PerFit (Click here for personal training & Meal plans mention Trent J!)   I was provided with a weekly meal plan and grocery list, and even workouts to accompany the diet and help increase weight loss.  Below I want to provide a few observations of my experience as it relates to the Ketogenic Diet. Also below, check out a few of the foods I enjoyed while working through this diet.

 

Week 1:  

So by far Week 1 just like with any diet is probably the most difficult. You are depriving your body of what it’s used to cold-turkey and the cravings will be real. For this particular challenge it started on a Friday so I jumped right in to going through a weekend with no carbs or alcohol. (not easy in the slightest).  In addition to the diet plan provided, I began my first 3-4 days with intermittent fasting.  I wouldn’t eat until around 11am-12pm and would get in calories within a 8-10 hour period.

I immediately experienced the low energy and being cranky as I felt hungry all the time for the first 72 hours or so. To fight my hunger, I kept lots of healthy fat snacks (peanuts, almonds, meat/cheeses) on hand to keep me on track. The key here is you want to get your body into ketosis as fast as possible, so you HAVE to get through the first 2-3 days.

Week 2:

By the time I reached Week 2, I had a good routine.  Workouts, diet, and everything was pretty much on auto pilot. My first check-in was -5 lbs.  Not bad for 1 week. I told myself it was probably 80% water because that’s a natural reaction of no carbs initially.

During this week I began to notice that I had increased mental clarity, lots of energy, was sleeping a lot longer and deeper, however lower performance. Which I never realized was different until experiencing this diet. See I noticed I was losing some of my strength in the few lifts I did, but throughout the day I had consistent energy from the time I woke up to laying down.

Week 3:

Week 3 I dropped another 4 lbs, so I was motivated at this point. I began to get a little more creative with my diet so did stray away from the original meal plan. And I’m not surprised as I’m always trying to experiment in the kitchen. This is where I began to notice changes in my sleeping. For the better actually, I was sleeping a lot more deeply and longer than normal. Whereas I would sleep only for about 4 or 5 at most hours at night (when scheduled allowed) I was sleeping anywhere from 6 – 8.5 hours. Which is extremely abnormal for me.

This was also the week I started feeling myself and said “oh this little cut of bread won’t hurt, or 1 or 2 drinks won’t hurt.”  Well yea… not recommended.

Week 4:

The home stretch!  Because of the way the days were structured though this was the last week I had roughly 10 days left. The humbling reality about going into Week 4, is I had no weight loss. Yep,  just because I wasn’t eating carbs doesn’t mean that my ‘slip ups’ weren’t going to catch up with me.  Must admit it was a little disappointing, but after reviewing what I had eaten and my drinks it made sense.

So I refocused and got back on track.

Week 5:

The last few days of the challenge I was certainly ready to wrap it up.  It was on this Friday, that I actually finally reached my goal of losing 15 lbs. Roughly 2 days before the challenge was over.  Exciting stuff, had missed no workouts and stay pretty on target with my macros. The cravings for waffles, rice, potatoes, cakes, pasta, toast, etc was at an all time high.

But with all of that being said, I completed the challenge pushed my body and mind beyond a new boundary. Not to mention, learned more about what works for my body and what doesn’t.

Summary:

Do I recommend the KETO diet?  Well sure. But probably no longer than 2-3 weeks. 30 days max. I think it’s most useful to help kick start a new diet (this is not a detox) as it gets the body into a fat burning state. If you follow up this diet with some carb cycling I think you’ll be well on your way to seeing the body you’ve always wanted!

With Passion, Purpose, and Pride,

Trent J ACEO

 

See some of my favorite recipes & even my 30 day results below!


 

 

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Sweep Streets

 

Each year on or around January 15, we celebrate the tremendous and world transformative life of the legendary Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.   There are oratory contests, days of service, parades, and commemorations spread out around the United States to celebrate and lift up the name of justice. And not the least of the memories, is the famous “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.  However, this year, I found myself becoming wrapped in another one of King’s “sermons” if you will.  “What Is Your Life’s Blueprint”, a short speech given by King at Barratt Junior High School in Philadelphia on October 26, 1967.  For a quick moment I want to talk about the street sweeper…

See the climate of 1967 was just as rough as any during the civil rights movement, and Dr. King had taken a few moments to go speak to a group of middle school students and empower them beyond their violent climate. Moreover, he called the students to consider their blueprint or plan if for their very own lives. Calling them OUT of the struggles of being a negro during the civil rights movement to be the best at whatever their various commissions may have been.  About 10 minutes into his speech he switches from giving his reasons, and over to the calling.

See Full Speech Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmtOGXreTOU

In King speech he proclaims: “Stay in school, and when you discover what you’re going to be in life, set out to do it like God almighty called you at this particular moment in history to do it…” And don’t just setout to do a good “Negro” job, but do a good JOB. That ANYBODY could do […]  And set out to do that job so well, that living, the dead or the unborn couldn’t do it any better.  If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, sweep streets like Beethoven composed music, sweep streets like Leontyne Price sings before the Metropolitan Opera. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well.”

 

Makes you think right? I’ve heard snippets of this speech many times and know the poetic commission of the “Street sweeper” but it wasn’t until I had my first meal of 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana that I saw it manifested for myself.  My friends and I celebrated NYE in NOLA, and concluded our trip with  lunch at Mandina’s Restaurant off of Canal St. As we awaited in the bar area for our table to be made ready, we found ourselves unknowingly staring at one of the bus boys.  We initially began joking and how quickly he would bus down a table, clean it, and have it setup for the next party. He was seemingly doing it in one fell swoop.  We kept watching as he adjusted from bus boy to server, and back to the tables just to keep the flow of traffic and patrons reasonable.  Shortly after that we were seated and began to order, and all throughout the time at the restaurant we found ourselves continuing to be amazed and how he flowed through the rows of tables, around the servers, and barely missing the patrons as the morning and afternoon progressed.  Just like Martin alluded, it truly was like art. He had a subtle smile on his face and was the only bus boy that we noticed in the restaurant.  As we concluded our meal, we requested to see the manager and brag not on our waiter but on the bus boy. That we had never seen anything like that and wanted to make sure he got his due of credit for an enjoyable experience.  The manager mentioned that he loved that job, and he even tried to make him a waiter at one point, but it didn’t work out.  The kid just wanted to be a bus boy…

 

 

It was at that moment that it hit me. Not that this man’s life calling was to be a bus boy, but in that moment, his dedication to that job allowed me to notice a splendor of God that was over him and even my own life. It was in such a way that I realized if you can do a job or vocation so well that it points people to God, you are indeed called in that moment for a reason and a season.  Whatever it may be that you are called to do, do it like the street sweeper Martin talked about, do it so well like the bus boy that you outshine those that may have higher positions than you.  When you are equipped with skill, passion, and joy its no longer work but a commission to transform people, places, or things into a better representation of themselves.  So on this Martin Luther King, Jr’s Day, in addition to your plans you may have, I want you to think about what you’ve been called to do. I want you to consider all the people that are waiting on you to accept your calling and bless their lives. I believe there are blessings God has for people around you, that He’s waiting to speak and demonstrate through you after you submit to obedience. Let today be that day as you embark into the remaining months, weeks, and days of 2018. No matter how low or high the position, do it for the glory.   Happy King Day to all the “Street Sweepers!”

 

. With Passion, Purpose, and Pride,

Trent J ACEO