Starting Paleo

One of the questions I get most often is – How did you start?

Here is my advice for starting (and sticking with) Paleo!

1.) Set a time goal
I originally found the whole idea of Paleo to be so overwhelming. How would I ever live without cheese and bread? I love fast food too much! So, I promised myself two weeks. I would give Paleo two weeks of my life and follow it 100% to see just what effects it had on me. At the end of the two weeks, I was hooked on the way I felt and the rest is history! But, if you’re afraid of the commitment, pick a small time goal. If it helps you, e-mail me at leslie@hellapaleo.com and let me know you are starting and how long you’d like to try Paleo and I will check in on you and provide words of encouragement!

2.) Plan, plan, plan!
I knew that I was going to start on February 4th, so on the Sunday before I went to the grocery store and shopped for my new life.  I loaded up my cart with eggs, meat (chicken, ground beef, ground turkey), veggies, and fruit.  I stuck to the outside areas of the grocery store and didn’t even go down the aisles.  I then planned out my whole first week.  

Breakfast: 2 hard boiled eggs, a banana
Lunch: Grilled chicken, with fruit salad and baby carrots
Dinner: Ground beef with onions and asparagus
Snacks: Beef jerky, an orange, handful of almonds

3.) Get a support system
When I started Paleo, I told everyone around me.  I still tell everyone who asks me why I’m not eating cake.  I’m very proud of my new life and having so many people aware of what I was doing helped me get the encouragement I needed.  I wasn’t ever offered cupcakes or sugary treats by my coworkers.  Let your friends and family be your cheerleaders!

4.) Don’t Give Up
I started Paleo full steam ahead and was doing great until I hit Day 5.  I even wrote a whole blog post about that day.  It was the first day I really struggled.  But – Day 5 came and went and I was onto new days of successes.

5.) It doesn’t have to start with 100%
I found that starting Paleo cold turkey was the best thing for me BUT I didn’t give up diet soda until a few months later.  I held onto that as my one thing I wasn’t ready to give up.  And… if you ask me, that’s O-K.  Still need a splash of milk in your coffee?  You can slowly work it out of your diet when you’re ready.  Just make sure you don’t hold on to more than one or two vices.  I know a lot of people eat Paleo 80% of the time and let themselves eat whatever they want for the other 20%.  That doesn’t work for me, I use the extra 20% for “whoops” when I eat something and realize after that it wasn’t exactly Paleo.  Staying on target and aiming for 100% works best for me.

I’ll add more to this list as it comes up for me.  I hope this is a great starting point for you.  Good luck!  You’re going to love your new life!

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