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Status Update Due to Recent Inquiries

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I’ve been receiving some requests for information regarding my weight loss and the status of my McArdles disease and how I’m doing with the whole ketosis/ketogenic thing which I assume is due to the new book that has my success story in it, “Keto Clarity” by Jimmy Moore.

I’ve been pretty open about things and have shared as much as I have because of how dear the topic is to me and how it has truly changed my life in nearly every way possible. For me it has been more about becoming active and fit again for the first time in 20+ years, in fact I am fitter now at 40 then I was even in high school and for the record I was pretty fit and active in high school.  I ran cross country and worked out like a mad man as most teenage boys do I suppose.  Nutrition and most importantly “ketosis” has absolutely transformed my life this past year.

I am happy to report I’ve completed a couple of half marathons and many other races as well as a few sprint triathlons over the last year.  I’ve lost right at 130 pds and my body fat% has gone from 42% to 13% now.  My running speeds continue to improve with me making it into the 6:50 min mile pace (for races and some training), my distances on both bike and run continue to increase with absolutely no issues with McArdles and muscle cramping.

I’m blessed with very supportive friends and family who have done nothing but support me in all of this from being thoughtful and considerate about my eating habits now to supporting me in my training and at my races.  The best part of it all has to be that after 40 years I think I actually discovered myself and my own happiness.  Something I apparently lost along the way.

I’ll do my best to answer questions and share my thoughts on things to those reaching out to me and I’ll try to do a better job of putting information here on the blog to help others as well.

Journey

Why EnergyBits ?

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Brand Ambassador badge_energy _large_web_transparent**Disclaimer:  I’m not sure if I need to post a disclaimer as I do not profit in any way from EnergyBits (www.energybits.com). I am however a “Brand Ambassador” now for them due to how strongly I feel about the benefits the product has provided me. What that entails is I get a custom 30% discount code (GeauxBits) that saves me and you 30% off on all EnergyBits orders.  I paid nothing to EnergyBits to become an Ambassador (other than being a regular customer myself) and again I do not get paid by them to promote their product. End Disclaimer**

I love EnergyBits. Plain and simple.  I do not usually promote anything.  I don’t usually become passionate about a brand or product. This product however continues to impress and amaze me. My physical performance while taking EnergyBits and particularly my recovery is always vastly improved and shorter.  This has become critical for me as I continue to try to balance and optimize both my fitness and nutrition needs.

As many know my “diet” consists of a very low carb and high fat (also referred to as LCHF) diet with moderate protein with a very strict no sugar and no grain (NSNG) policy. This helps me stay in ketosis which allows my muscles to be fueled by fat and not glucose/glycogen.  I firmly believe in the power of ketosis for everyone for many reasons but I will not go into that on this post.

For me LCHF and being in ketosis has made every difference in the world for someone with McArdles disease and especially someone with McArdles who has become an amateur athlete / triathlete.

These little things are PACKED with protein yet are so light and easy on the stomach. This is critical for my fueling both during regular training and more importantly on race day.  Last thing anyone wants or needs during a race or long run is to contend with a gastro issues.  They provide a steady flow of energy, eliminate fatigue and speed recovery, all naturally and all without digestive distress. The reason is simple. ENERGYbits® do not contain any caffeine, sugar or chemicals yet they have the highest concentration of protein in the world (64%), all in amino acid form which are absorbed instantly. ENERGYbits® also contain 40 vitamins/minerals, natural nitric oxide to open blood vessels, antioxidants to fight free radicals, Omega 3 to reduce inflammation, iron to prevent fatigue and electrolytes to prevent dehydration. All this from just one ingredient –organic spirulina and all for just one calorie per tab.

energybits with bits best (Small)

I take about 30-40 bits about 15-30 mins before my training session or race. Simply swallow them with a little water, I don’t drink too much with them to avoid a heavy stomach and sloshing. I personally also consume a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil or MCT oil to balance out my fueling.  The fats from the coconut oil and protein as well as electrolytes from the EnergyBits has been all I’ve fueled on for months now of races and training.  Everything from half marathons, triathlons, 10ks, 5ks and so on. It has completely changed my fueling strategy which has just made everything so much easier.

If you’re serious about fitness and nutrition I can’t recommend these little bits enough. Let me know if you want to give them a try and get some samples or if you want to just go all in for an extended period of time to test for yourself go to www.energybits.com and place an order for yourself and use the discount code “GeauxBits” to save 30%.

This is precisely what I did after all my reading and researching for fueling options for myself considering I couldn’t benefit from the same things others were using like “Gu” and carbs.  I found a discount code on Twitter to save 30%, went all in and ordered a bag of 1000 so that I could truly test for myself for a month. I wanted to avoid any placebo effect that might occur by just taking them for a day or two. I monitored performance and PRs eliminating the best and worst days, tracked how I felt and recovered and ultimately I just couldn’t deny what I was experiencing and the rest was history.  I’ve been using them for 6 months now and I finally decided I needed to share with others in case anyone could benefit.

DANE DEVALCOURT postcard back

Video by Dr. Jeff Volek –“The Many Facets of Keto-Adaptation: Health, Performance, and Beyond”

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Great video by Dr. Jeff Volek  titled “The Many Facets of Keto-Adaptation: Health, Performance, and Beyond”.

The following is from the video description:

“Obesity is a condition of excess fat accumulation in adipocytes where the person is literally stuck in storage mode diverting a disproportionate amount of calories into fat cells as opposed to oxidation. Thus it is more productive to think of obesity as a problem in ‘energy flow’ rather than energy expenditure (i.e., calories in, calories out). The most efficient approach to accelerate the body’s ability to access and burn body fat is to restrict dietary carbohydrate while increasing fat intake for a period of several weeks, after which fatty acids and ketones become the primary fuel at rest and during submaximal exercise. The coordinated set of metabolic adaptations that ensure proper inter-organ fuel supply in the face of low carbohydrate availability is referred to as keto- adaptation. This unique metabolic state has recently been shown to have widespread and profound therapeutic and performance-enhancing effects ranging from reversing type 2 diabetes to shrinking tumors to allowing ultra-endurance runners to set course records. This presentation will discuss the physiologic effects of very low carbohydrate diets with an emphasis on their unique effects on both features of metabolic syndrome and human performance.

Dr. Jeff Volek is a Full Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut where he teaches and leads a research team that explores the physiologic impact of various dietary and exercise regimens and nutritional supplements. Dr. Volek’s most significant line of work has been a series of studies aimed at better understanding what constitutes a well formulated low carbohydrate diet and the physiological impact on obesity, body composition, fatty acid composition and lipoprotein metabolism, gut micro-biome, adaptations to training and overall metabolic health. This line of work has shown profound effects of ketogenic diets on overall health and well-being, as well as peak performance. He has published more than 250 peer-reviewed manuscripts, many of which were longitudinal interventions of carbohydrate restricted diets. Specific to low carbohydrate diets, Dr. Volek has authored/co-authored 4 books, 60 peer-reviewed manuscripts and reviews, and delivered over 100 invited presentations on low carbohydrate diets in half a dozen countries at scientific and industry meetings. Through more than a decade of research dedicated to better understanding low carbohydrate diets, Dr. Volek has accumulated an enormous amount of laboratory and clinical data on how carbohydrate restricted diets affects human physiology, and acquired a unique knowledge pertaining to the individualization and formulation of safe, effective and sustainable low carbohydrate diets.”

If your interested in trying out EnergyBits for training / recovery or race day fueling you can save 30% with the discount code “GeauxBits” at www.energybits.com

DANE DEVALCOURT postcard back

Low-Carb Conversations Podcast

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I recently had the privilege of being a quest on the Low-Carb Conversations Podcast with Jimmy Moore and Dietitian Cassie.

I must say I was incredibly nervous about this as I’ve never participated in a Podcast before but it ended up being a wonderful experience and although I wish I had opened up more and had more to say considering how passionate I am about the topics I remain incredibly grateful for having been given the opportunity and hope it will not be my last.

This was episode 125: Susan McCauley And Dane DeValcourt Examine Latest Low-Carb vs. Low-Fat Study
– See more at: http://www.lowcarbconversations.com/2041/125-susan-mccauley-dane-devalcourt/

This is the description of the episode pulled from the shows webpage where you can also see all the show notes and links to articles and topics discussed:

“In today’s episode, our co-hosts Jimmy Moore and Dietitian Cassie are joined by two truly amazing guest friends who actually both found Paleo through the Whole30 in a San Francisco Bay Area Certified Nutrition Consultant with a fascinating story of overcoming alcohol and smoking addiction named Susan McCauley at “Evolve Nutrition” and an amateur triathlete who was diagnosed with a debilitating condition called “Glycogen Storage Disease Type V” (also known as McArdle’s Disease) and discovered the amazing health benefits that come from eating a ketogenic Paleo diet named Dane DeValcourt (Dane’s story is featured in Jimmy’s new book Keto Clarity). Listen in to hear Jimmy, Cassie, Susan, and Dane give their thoughts about that new low-carb vs. low-fat diet study funded by the National Institutes of Health that published this week, why there is danger to your health when you don’t consume ENOUGH salt in your diet, the desperation by companies like Coca-Cola to revive their brand that has been built on sugary sodas, another vascular surgeon coming out in opposition to statin medications, an op-ed from a frustrated chef who doesn’t think customers should be making so many menu substitutions without a disease requiring it, a registered dietitian (and it’s not Cassie!) sharing why saturated fats and cholesterol are not harmful to consume, and why school districts are making the decision to drop the new federal “healthy” school lunch guidelines because they’re just not working. Plus, don’t miss Susan’s amazingly ketogenic-friendly Rosemary Thyme Butter recipe and Dane’s high-fat tip at the end of the show. It’s time to pull up a chair, grab a cup of coffee and let’s talk!”

 

 

 

Ketosis Resources and Information

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**MOVING CONTENT to www.ketochat.com ** 

Setup a new site dedicated to ketosis and ketogenic diets as well as a discussion forum.  Just trying to judge if there is any value to doing so and if it can become a useful source of information or not.

www.ketochat.com  and www.ketochat.com/chat

 

Also, please note I am no expert. Not a doctor. Not a nutritionist. Just a very ordinary guy with a particular muscle disease (Glycogen Storage Disease Type 5, aka. McArdles Disease) that was creating a LOT of issues for me. The proper nutrition seems to have solved most of my problems and helps me manage the muscle disease quite well. I’ve lost 130 pds in a year and half, no more high blood pressure meds and no more high cholesterol and my muscles are functioning better than ever and at 40 I’m in the best shape of my life.

Pulling together various resources regarding ketosis / ketogenic diets for others who are looking for a place to start.  This is partly due to the “Ketosis in McArdles” facebook group and that lots of good info is getting lost in the comments on various posts.

What is Ketosis?:

Ketosis is a natural state in which the body is burning fat for fuel. For someone with McArdles who is unable to tap into glycogen stores this has a great deal of potential as a muscle fuel source. For the normal person you can think about carbs vs. fat for fueling similarly to gas vs. wood. Carbs are a quick intense burning fuel, you can consume large quantities rapidly and burn them quickly through lots of energy expenditure.  Fat is a much slower burning fuel that lasts for some time and you have a large fat store to tap into.

Your body also does a really good job of regulating itself at a nice steady pace while in ketosis.  Since we are talking about fuel and wood let’s consider the analogy of say a camp fire. In ketosis your fueling that camp fire with burning logs. Nice slow burning logs that your able to watch and stoke on occasion and you have a nice supply of wood sitting near by to throw another log on as needed. Easy to stabilize the fire and keep it burning for long periods of time.  Now lets fuel this fire with carbs and thus gasoline.  Your throwing gas on the fire constantly.  Its a quick burn, bursting constantly. Scrambling to get more gas, throwing it on the fire, huge flames and repeat. Exhausting!  Not only is that what is going on with fueling your muscles but your also doing similar actions to your insulin response.  Your body is constantly dealing with heightened blood sugar because your fueling through lots of carb intake. It’s a roller coaster ride for the insulin response and that’s a nasty thing.

Found this nice little write up describing this, “Ketosis also helps regulate your blood without complications. Involving complex carbs into your diet causes your body to heighten your blood sugar and as a result produce insulin. This stuff is nasty in large amounts; consider it to be your blood’s very own personal, fat-kicking police force. High blood sugar is interpreted as TOXIC by your body, so the insulin regulates your blood to cleanse it. Soon, though, your body starts struggling to keep up; when you take high amounts of carbs (sugar) and the insulin cant keep up….your body converts sugar to fat and insulin stores it in cells. Your body is capable of regulating your blood sugar on its own without help when you aren’t mainlining so much sucrose. Ketogenic diets avoid such problems!”

Q: But I have high cholesterol, I can’t possibly do this?!?

Cholesterol seems to be a huge worry by many when considering a ketogenic diet. Rightfully so based on the old information we’ve been fed for so many years regarding cholesterol. Lots of studies these days are showing that they simply didn’t get the problem right many years ago. They started to investigate the increases in heart attack deaths. They start cutting people open with the knowledge they died of a heart attack, so what caused the heart to stop?  Well as they start digging they notice blocked arteries. What is this stuff blocking arteries?  CHOLESTEROL!!  Presto!  Cholesterol blocked these arteries and thus cholesterol is bad and we need people to lower it.

Easy cause and effect right?

Wrong. That’s just what is easy to see. Could there be more to it?  What if something was causing arteries to be inflamed, systemic inflammation?  We know that cholesterol is absolutely vital for cellular function. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, even in large amounts. But if the arteries are inflamed and thus constricted, then you are at greater risk for cholesterol getting jammed up in there and thus blockages might occur.  This inflammation would be much harder to see and determine then just the blockage itself.  Guess what is a notorious for causing systemic inflammation in the body and the many autoimmune diseases/disorders?  Grains and sugars, CARBS!

Now don’t get me wrong, DO NOT start consuming lots of great bacon and butter because fat is good if your not willing to cut out all the sugars and grains.  You simply can’t have it both ways.

 

Q: What can I eat?:

BACON and BUTTER!

It’s true. First thing is keeping carbs very low.  Less than 30g is ideal.  You also want to increase your fat consumption generally.  Most find a ratio of something like 70/20/10 (fat/protein/carbs).  This is based on your overall total caloric intake for the day.  You want your higher fats not just for fuel but for satiety. Fat is incredibly filling and will help curb all the desires for carbs generally if your keeping your fats high.

And yes if your doing ketosis for the sake of loosing weight you need to come to terms with the fact that you don’t actually get fat from fat.  Fat will be passed by the body if your over doing it on fat. What isn’t burned will leave, it’s not stored. Carbs not burned will turn to sugars and then converted to fat and insulin will respond and cause it to be stored.

You also need to watch your protein intake, it’s easy to over do it with protein which can also kick you out of ketosis.

Ok.. so what can you eat?  Meats, with all the added fat. Chicken with skin. Good fatty fishes (salmon & tuna). Butter, bacon and so on… Try to eat good quality meats, grass fed is your best choice but yes it’s expensive.

Also, if your struggling to maintain your fat/protein ratio I suggest adding more fat through others means such as:  REAL butter (organic/grass-fed), coconut oil, avocado and guacamole, high quality pure olive oil (seriously research this, so much is polluted with vegetable oils), walnut oil, MCT oil.

I will cook almost everything these days (meats and veggies) with Kerry Gold Grassfed Butter.  It adds fat to keep ratios up while trying to keep protein from being too much. Also lots of coconut oil on the side (yes I consume spoonfuls straight out of the jar) and olive oil on my spinach salad.

The only carbs I get really come through veggies, for me that’s namely (broccoli, cauliflower, squash, spinach, brussel sprouts).

Those are my go to veggies. Lots of spinach salad as well as creamed spinach. Broccoli and cauliflower cooked down with butter and seasoning. Spiralized zucchini and squash.

WATER… coffee and tea but without sugar.  Add some heavy cream to that coffee or even butter!  Google “bullet proof coffee” !

 

The Ultimate List of Keto Foods – Great Source: http://josepharcita.blogspot.com/2011/03/guide-to-ketosis.html

Green = The Absolute Best: No/Low Sugars, High Polyunsaturated Fats

Blue = Very Good: No/Low Sugars, High Saturated Fats

Orange = Good: No/Low Sugars, Low-Moderate Fats

Purple = Acceptable: Moderate Sugars/Glycemic, High Polyunsaturated Fats

Grey = Barely Acceptable: Moderate Sugars/Glycemic, High Saturated Fats

Red = Unacceptable (use sparingly): Moderate Sugars/Glycemic, Low-Moderate Fats

Cheeses

  • American Cheese / blue: very good
  • Blue Cheese / blue: very good
  • Cheddar Cheese / blue: very good
  • Cottage Cheese / blue: very good
  • Cream Cheese / blue: very good
  • Feta Cheese / blue: very good
  • Gouda Cheese / blue: very good
  • Mozzarella Cheese / blue: very good
  • Provolone Cheese / blue: very good
  • Ricotta Cheese / blue: very good
  • Swiss Cheese / blue: very good

Dairy

  • Almond Milk (unsweetened) / green: absolute best
  • Coconut Cream / blue: very good
  • Coconut Milk (unsweetened) / blue: very good
  • Egg / orange: good
  • Heavy Cream / blue: very good
  • Ice Cream (unsweetened) / grey: barely acceptable
  • Soy Milk (unsweetened) / orange: good
  • Whipped Cream (unsweetened) / blue: very good

Dressings

  • Balsamic Vinegar / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Blue Cheese / green: absolute best
  • Creamy Caesar / purple: acceptable
  • Ranch / green: absolute best

Fats & Oils

  • Almond Butter / green: absolute best
  • Almond Oil / green: absolute best
  • Butter / blue: very good
  • Canola Oil / green: absolute best
  • Cocoa Butter / blue: very good
  • Coconut Oil / blue: very good
  • Fish Oil (cod liver) / green: absolute best
  • Flax Seed Oil / green: absolute best
  • Grape Seed Oil / green: absolute best
  • Hemp Seed Oil / green: absolute best
  • Mayonnaise / green: absolute best
  • Olive Oil / green: absolute best
  • Peanut Butter / blue: very good
  • Safflower Oil / green: absolute best
  • Sesame Oil / green: absolute best
  • Soybean Oil / green: absolute best
  • Sunflower Oil / blue: very good
  • Vegetable Oil / blue: very good

Fish

  • Anchovies / orange: good
  • Flounder / orange: good
  • Herring / green: absolute best
  • Salmon / green: absolute best
  • Sardines / green: absolute best
  • Sole / orange: good
  • Trout / orange: good
  • Tuna / orange: good
  • Tuna (canned) / orange: good

Flours/Meals/Powders

  • Acorn Flour / purple: acceptable
  • Almond Flour / green: absolute best
  • Almond Meal / green: absolute best
  • Cocoa Powder (unsweetened) / grey: barely acceptable
  • Flax Seed Meal / green: absolute best
  • Protein Powder / orange: good
  • Psyllium Husk / orange: good
  • Sesame Seed Flour / purple: acceptable
  • Splenda / orange: good

Fowl

  • Chicken Breast / orange: good
  • Chicken Legs / blue: very good
  • Chicken Wings / blue: very good
  • Duck / blue: very good
  • Goose / blue: very good
  • Quail / blue: very good
  • Turkey, breast / orange: good
  • Turkey, ground / blue: very good
  • Turkey, bacon / blue: very good

Fruits, low sugar/glycemic

  • Avocado / green: absolute best
  • Blackberry / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Cranberry / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Lemon / orange: good
  • Lime / orange: good
  • Olive, black / purple: acceptable
  • Raspberry / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Rhubarb / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)

Fruits, moderate sugar/glycemic

  • Apple / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Strawberry / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Watermelon / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)

Meats

  • Beef, ground / blue: very good
  • Beef, ribs / blue: very good
  • Beef, sausage / blue: very good
  • Beef, steak / blue: very good
  • Lamb, chops / blue: very good
  • Pepperoni, pork/beef / blue: very good
  • Pork, bacon / blue: very good
  • Pork, chops / blue: very good
  • Pork, ham / blue: very good
  • Pork, sausage / blue: very good
  • Veal / orange: good
  • Venison, steak / orange: good

Nuts/Legumes

  • Almonds / green: absolute best
  • Cashews / blue: very good
  • Coconut / grey: barely acceptable
  • Hazelnuts / green: absolute best
  • Macadamias / blue: very good
  • Peanuts / purple: acceptable
  • Pecans / green: absolute best
  • Pistachios / purple: acceptable
  • Walnuts / green: absolute best

Seeds

  • Chia Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Flax Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Hemp Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Pumpkin Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Safflower Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Sesame Seeds / green: absolute best
  • Sunflower Seeds / green: absolute best

Shell Fish

  • Clams / orange: good
  • Crabmeat / orange: good
  • Lobster / orange: good
  • Mussels / orange: good
  • Oysters / orange: good
  • Shrimp / orange: good
  • Squid / orange: good

Vegetables, low sugar/glycemic

  • Arugula / orange: good
  • Asparagus / orange: good
  • Bok Choy / orange: good
  • Broccoli / orange: good
  • Broccoli Rabe / orange: good
  • Cabbage / orange: good
  • Cauliflower / orange: good
  • Celery / orange: good
  • Chard / orange: good
  • Chicory Greens / orange: good
  • Cucumber / orange: good
  • Eggplant / orange: good
  • Endive / orange: good
  • Fennel / orange: good
  • Garlic / orange: good
  • Green Bean / orange: good
  • Jalapeno / orange: good
  • Lettuce, Green Leaf / orange: good
  • Lettuce, Romaine / orange: good
  • Parsley / orange: good
  • Radish / orange: good
  • Spinach / orange: good
  • Soy Bean / orange: good
  • Zucchini / orange: good

Vegetables, moderate sugar/glycemic

  • Artichoke / orange: good
  • Brussel Sprouts / orange: good
  • Carrots / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Celeriac / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Kale / orange: good
  • Kohlrabi / orange: good
  • Mushrooms / orange: good
  • Okra / orange: good
  • Onion / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Pepper, sweet, green / orange: good
  • Pepper, sweet, red / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Pepper, hot, red / orange: good
  • Pepper, sweet, yellow / orange: good
  • Pumpkin / orange: good
  • Snow Pea / orange: good
  • Spaghetti Squash / orange: good
  • Tomato / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)
  • Turnips / red: unacceptable (use sparingly)

Q:  Is the second wind in McArdles basically ketosis?:

Again I can’t say with any true science or certainty to back me up but I’m very tempted to say “yes” it is.  But I really need to expand on that I think. I feel that the second wind is basically the muscles flipping the switch to burning fat. For those not aware of what we with McArdles are talking about regarding “second wind” is that we have this thing in common when it comes to physical exertion where we start to get sore and on the verge of potential cramps / contractures when we start out say biking, walking or running.  When we start to feel this we have found that if we basically pause for a minute or two and start the activity again we are able to proceed without going through these pains again.  I feel that our muscles are switching to fat for fuel or burning through some limited resource of fuel (which I don’t understand how since we can’t use glycogen) but it happens.

Now one of the benefits I’ve found with ketosis and what makes me think that second wind is the switch to fat for fuel, is that while I’m in ketosis I don’t have to go through the second wind process.  I start out running or biking without ever encountering this initial soreness or fatigue and will not need to slow down or pause in the beginning.  With ketosis it’s as though I’m in a permanent second wind.

There are so many other added benefits of ketosis however. I have more energy in general and I simply do not cramp or get sore from even some of the most basic things that I would have in my normal life. There was a time that I could get cramps from simply things like combing my hair or just brief walking or having to lift my laptop bag to go to work. Very minor trivial things could trigger contractures that were extremely painful and result in soreness for days.

I have been in a steady state of mild to high ketosis for 1.5 years now and in that time despite all my physical efforts now I have not once gotten a cramp or contracture.

 Q: Why would you do this? Ketosis is bad according to my doctor!?!

Your probably hearing “ketosis” and thinking “ketoacidosis“.  The later is quite bad but is only really relevant to a type 1 diabetic or a truly insulin dependent type 2 diabetic.  This particular myth / worry has been propagated over and over again by misinformed Dr’s and others who only have part of the whole story.  I liken this to when you were a child and you do that experiment with other kids to show how information is passed on by word of mouth down the line and how different the information is once it gets to the end, yeah… that’s basically what is going on with ketosis and ketoacidosis which explains why ketosis has such a negative connotation by many.

My friend Jimmy Moore recently published a great book titled “Keto Clarity” (yes I LOVE this book, and yes I may be slightly biased) and in it is a paragraph on this particular subject I would like to quote and share because I feel this topic is so important to understand and to help many get over the initial fears that are likely based on very poor information, even from your doctor in many cases. Once you understand this you may even be more open to discussing the differences with your Dr. and making sure your both on the same page.

“When diabetics do not get an adequate amount of insulin, their bodies respond as if they are starving. Their bodies think there’s no more glucose to be had, either from diet or glycogen stores, and they switch to burning fat instead and ramp up ketone production so it can be used as an alternative energy source. The problem is, these diabetics aren’t out of glucose — in fact, they have elevated levels of blood glucose. Insulin is the hormone that allows glucose into cells, and without it, the blood sugar has nowhere to go and accumulates in the bloodstream, even as the body can’t stop making ketones. Once levels of the blood ketone beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) approach 20 millimolars, a diabetic patient will get very sick and may fall into a coma. Ketoacidosis can even be life threatening. It’s an extremely serious thing and certainly should not be messed around with. But keep in mind this condition only applies to type 1 diabetics and, very rarely, truly insulin-dependent type 2 diabetics.

It would be impossible for this sequence of events to happen to non-diabetics. If you can produce even a small amount of insulin in your body, ketones naturally remain at safe levels.” – Jimmy Moore “Keto Clarity” pg 39-40

 

Q:  What is nutritional ketosis, fat-adapted, keto-adapted?

There are lots of ways to say or describe this it seems. The basics however are that you are in a state of ketosis through nutrition / diet.  You are following the correct ratios of high fat, medium protein and very low carb. You are inducing and maintaining ketosis naturally through eating correctly and nothing else.  Once your in this state your body will be burning fat and generating ketones for energy.

The absolute best thing you can do is avoid ALL sugars, grains and starches. Seriously, you really need to. There is nothing you need from these “food” sources. Then you need to moderate your protein intake as too much protein can kick you out of ketosis. When you consume too much protein it gets converted into glucose. Read up on (Gluconeogenesis)

I can always tell when I’ve consumed too much protein (and yes it happens often, I battle this quite a bit sadly due to all my Triathlon training) as I will all of a sudden become very hungry throughout the evening and wanting to snack and crave things I wouldn’t normally have to deal with. If you are low carb and are trying to stay in ketosis and find yourself dealing with cravings and being very hungry then my bet is your not consuming enough fats which should lead to satiety and your likely eating too much protein.  Figure out your ratio, take time and experiment and test your ketone levels and track your diet and if you real want to get this sorted out you will. There is a very bright light at the end of this tunnel, I assure you!

 

Q:  Isn’t this the same thing as Atkins?

Yes and no.  Move on.

No seriously..  the induction phase of Atkins is absolutely. But in general Atkins was more just low carb and didn’t particularly push the higher fats needed for ketosis.

I want to expand on this a little more though when I have more time…. Please hold

 

Q: How do I test? Urine or Blood? How often? Ahhhh NOOOOOOO what happened to my urine test?!?!?!

First thing to note is that obviously blood testing trumps urine testing.  Blood test strips are fairly expensive, avg. about $3 US per test strip.

I need to expand on this topic… I have more to share and say but I need to dig up some info on it first to make sure I’m saying it correctly.

Ketostix – Basic testing for ketosis.

Precision Xtra Glucose/Ketone Test – Excellent choice for testing level of ketones in blood. Test strips are expensive though.

Precision Xtra Ketone Test Strip – Amazon, Qty of 10 for about $50.  Quite expensive

Precision Xtra Ketone Test Strip – From a Canadian Pharmacy (I purchased via them, can’t beat the price!) If you find them cheaper then these guys PLEASE let me know!

 

 Q:  How do I determine the grams of Fat/Protein/Carbs I should be consuming to maintain nutritional ketosis?

There are no shortages of “Keto Calculators” to determine your macronutrients:

http://keto-calculator.ankerl.com/

http://ketodietapp.com/Blog/page/KetoDiet-Buddy

http://www.ruled.me/keto-calculator/

 

Q:  How do I track the ratios of Fat/Protein/Carbs?

Use some of the web calculators to tweak and understand your ratios and then use tools such as:

  • My Fitness Pal – A web based diary to log your food that even has a mobile app.

My Fitness Pal Tips

  • MFP is even better with friends! Don’t be afraid to add fellow ketoers or family members.
  • Set your goals. Go to Goals → Change Goals → Custom → Continue (60% Fat, 35% Protein 5% Carbs) and set your Fiber to 25g, just to keep it green in your totals.
  • Settings → Diary Settings. Add Fiber to your tracking to watch your net carbs!

 

Tools:

Ketostix – Basic testing for ketosis.

Precision Xtra Glucose/Ketone Test – Excellent choice for testing level of ketones in blood. Test strips are expensive though.

My Fitness Pal

Books:

Keto Clarity                                        Jimmy Moore                              978-1628600070

The New Atkins for a New You      Westman, Phinney, Volek        978-0091935573

Wheat Belly                                        William David                             978-1609611545

Why We Get Fat                                Gary Taubes                                978-0307272706

Good Calories, Bad Calories           Gary Taubes                                978-1400033461

The Paleo Diet                                   Loren Cordain                            978-0470913024

The Paleo Solution                            Robb Wolf                                  978-0982565841

The Primal Blueprint                       Mark Sisson                                978-0982207703

The Ketogenic Diet                           Lyle McDonald                           978-0967145600

 

Recipes:

EatingKeto Reddit

RuledMe Recipes

Websites:

  • My Fitness Pal Script – Surye’s script that tracks net carbs along with macro-nutrients
  • LCHF Outline – Eenfeldt’s personal website and the outline about LCHF
  • Keto FAQ – Bodybuilding.com’s Megathread on the Keto Lifestyle
  • AreYouReadyToReddit’s Meal Plans – A Guide to plan your meals up to a week in advance.
  • Importance of Water – Why drink so much? Why is it hard to keep on Keto?
  • Wolfram Alpha – Simple database to look at food and convert measurements.
  • Ruled.me – Ketosis info and recipes
  • BJJCaveman.com – Another guy with a great site / blog on his tests with ketosis and what he has encountered (good and bad), I like what he has done.

Videos:

 

 

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2015, Training and Ironman Augusta 70.3! #staysexy

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Well I did it.. I kicked off the new year (2015) by registering for my very first 70.3 race. I will attempt Ironman Augusta 70.3 on Sunday, September 27th, 2015 in Augusta, GA.

I have been training every day and will continue to do so until the race. I am diligently following a 16 week 70.3 training plan by Chris McDonald of Big Sexy Racing. I received the training plan from Chris as part of the 2015 BSRx3 Team and it’s my first time truly training with a plan and it’s making a big difference already. Being a part of Team BSRx3 and being able to discuss things daily with Chris as well as other coaches and fellow team mates on the private forums has really helped me feel like I am a part of something and supported by many.

Currently plans for the next couple of months include some private one-on-one training time with a swim coach to help identify weaknesses, form improvements and tips and suggestions in general. Swim confidence is sorely lacking and all the help in the world is needed for me.

It also looks like I will be purchasing a Tri/TT bike soon as well. Through much debate and discussion with others it seems my best chance at success (which is solely to finish) will be with the proper tools and training. With my muscle disease and my lack of fueling options with my dependency on fat for fuel as oppose to the sugars/carbs/glucose that others are able to take in, I need to conserve as much energy as possible when possible and that is the main point of these bikes. Conserve energy within the legs to help with the run.

It’s not easy spending that sort of money on a bike when I am still not 100% sure I can physically finish an event such as this but this goal is unbelievably important to me and goes far beyond the money and subsequent investment in a bike such as this. If I do purchase this bike and finish this race looking back at the finish line at all I’ve accomplished in the past two years physically and emotionally as well as looking into the faces and smiles of those I love and who support me through it all, well there is no price to put on this.

Cheers to 2015!!!!!!