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Wrapping Up a Paleo Challenge

​My gym is finishing up a 28 Day Paleo Challenge. As people are thinking about what's next, take some time to read the 7 Shades of Paleo article. It is a funny article, but it brings about some good points. 

One of the goals of this challenge was to introduce people to a different way of living. The reason we wanted to keep it low stress, was to increase the likelihood of making healthy eating more of a routine. However, 28 days is not always enough. The change we really want is permanent. 

To make the Paleo lifestyle “stick” may require some alterations. That’s where the shades of Paleo come into play. Some tolerate a strict Paleo diet, while some opt to indulge in some non-Paleo food. Doing that does not make one a failure, it just means your shade of Paleo may not be so black-and-white. Some don’t have this nailed down yet and need more time or more tweaking to figure out what you need to do with this Paleo deal.

Many of you had some positive results – changes in body composition, improved recovery, increased energy, and better mood. I challenge you to keep the forward momentum. Rather than shit the bed at the end of the challenge, see how long you can keep things going. Maybe you need a non-Paleo meal, maybe you don’t. Maybe you try a non-Paleo day and realize your body is better off with a meal or two rather than an entire day. Maybe you handle it just fine and are able to return to a Paleo food plan without hesitation.
While you're figuring this out, please read this article. Yes, there is a pitch for a supplement line. You don't have to buy the supplements to get any usefulness from the article. I did try the supplements. Some I liked more than others, but it required me giving them an honest shot and not just a fake attempt for the sake of appearance. 
The article also discussing personalizing Paleo for yourself. That type of back and forth requires a few things, honesty topping the list. Be honest with how you felt and feel. Know where your starting point is/was, how your body reacts to food, how your mind and emotions react to stress. Be honest with how much self control you have and when it’s been tested enough for the day. Call it a day because your discipline (and your body) need some rest. Did you give it your best or just a half-ass attempt? Finally, keep a journal. Use it to describe the interaction between your body, mind, and emotions with food. Then read over it. When you're thinking about making changes to your diet, use your journal to make a generic plan very personal to your needs.
We had a Paleo Potluck as the food capstone for the challenge. I heard a lot about needing to do it more often. There's good to be had from social time with Paleo friends. You get new ideas on what you can eat. For those not in the strict zone, you may find a new treat or two. Best of all - every item in the Paleo Potluck would have been a hit at a non-Paleo potluck. I hope you don't feel like a freak bringing these foods to a regular potluck, no one has to know it's Paleo. 
If this challenge was easy for you – that’s great! I hope it continues to be part of your everyday life. For those of you that struggled – you can still continue past the 28 days! Continue searching for ways to make Paleo work for you. Who knows, maybe the next time a Paleo challenge comes around, you can roll right through it without any problems or you'll learn something new. 
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