Sunday, 27 December 2015

Cat making clementine and whiskey marmalade. #paulssonpaleo

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Showing my joints some love by reverting back to espresso. #paulssonpaleo #coffee #osteoarthritis #espresso #paleo

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Coffee Fingers

Cat already wrote about quitting coffee and getting full mobility back in her - what she thought - osteo-arthritic fingers.

I really tried to follow suit, but I just have zero willpower to quit my one to two cup a day addiction (a rather modest addiction for someone like me...).

So I decided to try another trick, mentioned by my Italian friend Francesco - drinking espresso coffee instead of filter coffee. The theory is that the filtering process of your normal Swedish coffee leaches too many toxins out of the coffee grounds, which makes for a larger amount of irritating substances compared to espresso.

Our rather modest collection of espresso magic makers
After reading up on the link between coffee and osteoarthritis, I gave it a go. The change wasn't as quick as for Cat, but I would say that after a month 99% of the pain and 95% of the swelling is gone. Success!

Especially after the rather tragic experiment of fasting this summer, that did absolutely nothing for my fingers (but everything for the start of a six-pack, but that is another story.)

Friday, 11 December 2015

Ice, Ice Baby

I've been obsessed with cold showers since I was 16. It all started because I had read somewhere that cellulite, the supposed bane of the female population, could be cured with cold showers. 

So at this (sad) point in my life, my teenage self decided she would end every warm shower with a cold one. Not that it worked against little dimples on my arse, but somehow it grew into an obsession that I couldn't live without. It felt so good!!

Fast forward to my late thirties and I started taking it to another level. I had (thankfully) abandoned the cellulite obsession long ago (the things us women are suckered into... but that's another rant altogether). Instead I was reading more and more about strengthening my immune system with cold showers. So I started ONLY showering cold. And got even more addicted to it. 

After a tip from my Norwegian partner in crime, Andreas "Paleoterapeuten" Døn, I have now found yet another reason to worship cold water - Wim Hof, the Iceman. Ey, ey, ey, now that is something to emulate... The guy is incredible, using his breath to manipulate his body to cope with extreme cold, but also using his mind to influence his immune and hormonal system to withstand stress and disease. I listened to this interview last night. 

With the help of his breathing exercises, I could hold my breath for a minute and a half without  blinking, but more importantly, I could make my body produce HEAT very quickly to counteract my rather cold bedroom. Interesting! And a bit sweaty. 

Wim also made a point of that we wear way too much clothing, which in turn reduces the amount of fat-burning "brown fat" in our bodies. I assume that I have quite a bit of brown fat from my incessant cold showers, as I heat up very quickly when working in cold weather, but I still insist on wearing a lot of layers (because mamma says so...). 

Hence, I decided to test out a few things today. I went for a run in my flimsiest barefoot shoes, sans socks, wearing leggings and two T-shirts. It was 5 degrees and rainy. Apart from my hands, the rest of my body stayed warm. 

Flesh-coloured tank top weather
Then I went for a dip, immersing myself up to my neck in the river for about ten seconds. Still not cold. Ran back. For good measure, I removed one of the T-shirts. Still not cold.

Interesting! Let's see if this new obsession has more benefits than just interesting anecdotes! I certainly felt extremely good afterwards and my body is still buzzing from it three hours later. 

Who needs a towel when the wind is blowing?

A swim and a run to cheer me up. #paulssonpaleo #paleo #cryotherapy #wimhof

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Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Christmas Presents - Bah Humbug!

I love Christmas, don't get me wrong... However, I have come to detest Christmas presents. 

Stuff. Things. Trinkets that we don't need and are often promptly regifted or given to charity once the Christmas cheer is over. 

So here is my contribution to Christmas. Vouchers for experiences. Better health. Stronger bodies. Calmer minds. "Things" that actually mean something. 

Miss Grinch (Cecilia)

Våga vägra köpa "saker" i julklapp. Skänk en biljett till bättre hälsa istället! #paulssonpaleo #paleo #kostrådgivning #personligträning

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Monday, 7 December 2015

Clients keeping watch over roof works! #sheephut #gutefår #sheep #DIY #selfbuild #paulssonpaleo

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The Paleo Tooth Fairy

I went to the dentist this morning and lo and behold... I had another cavity in the making. That makes two itty bitty cavities since I moved to Sweden. Before that I had NONE for a decade. Zero.

The interesting thing is that the tiny cavities coincide with close to no tartar whatsoever, even the dentist was impressed. And this is the chick that has had tartar chiseled out of her bottom front teeth for as long as she can remember.

The dentist mentioned that a more aciditic environment in the mouth will keep tartar to a minumum and possibly promote cavities. A more alkaline environment will do the opposite.

Duh. What is the most acidic thing that I have ingested EVERY SINGLE DAY, WITHOUT FAIL for the last two years? I hate to say it, but it is spelled sauerkraut.

'tis a sad day for me and my buddy, the 8 liter sauerkraut jar
Given how I approach things - with gusto, all in, more is better, can't get enough - you can perhaps imagine how I eat sauerkraut. By the bucketload... So I will try to give my poor teeth a rest and not eat 5 tablespoonfuls every meal (I know, I know). Not to mention the fermented drinks for breakfast. Sigh.

On top of that, there are always the usual suspects to consider:
  • Eating too many times a day. I usually eat 3-4 times a day, which is great. But that's not counting the piece of dark chocolate in the evening (or three), or the carrot stick between meals should be considered another meal (dang!). I shall have to be a bit stricter about eating outside of mealtimes, to avoid any excess acid on the pearly whites. 
  • Laying off excess sugar. I eat sugar once in a while. As mentioned, usually in the form of dark chocolate. A bit of honey on occasion. The random "chokladbiskvi" from Skånskan (to die for). All in all, not that much, given that I hardly eat fruit and also avoid the starchy stuff such as bread, pasta, potatoes, pizza, you know the drill. However, when the sugars are ingested separately from food, however natural they may be, they do present an additional load on your teeth as well as your body. Dessert on occasion - ok. Random piece of fruit/ chocolate/ paleo ball between meals - unnecessary. 
  • Cleaning the spaces between my teeth. I already floss like a madwoman (hello excess again), but perhaps adding on an extra wide toothpick a few times a day will help further. The dentist suggested using little weird plastic thingies to use between my teeth, but there is only so much plastic allowed in my mouth nowadays. 
Anyhow, I do like a challenge, so here's to two healed cavities by December 2016! Or premature dentures...

Friday, 4 December 2015

Born To Run Workshop

Last weekend I attended the aptly named 'Bulletproof Runner Workshop' organised by Born To Run, in Gothenburg. The course is designed to help improve your running technique, performance and injury prevention and is a stepping stone to Lee Saxby's legendary coaching course.

Those that have read the book Born to Run, by Christopher McDougall will know of the barefoot phenomenon. This influenced the popularity of minimalist running shoes, essentially stripping away your big fat-cushioned, inflexible jogging shoes to something which allows your 200,000 + nerve endings in your feet feel the ground again. I read the book and bought the minimalist shoes, but have always been conscious that I may need to improve and change my running technique to suit. This was the weekend!

Joseph and Gourgen were brilliant hosts and taught us loads over the two days. The first morning we ran through various drills to compare our technique against a 'Bulletproof Runner', these consisted of squatting, hoping, bouncing, uni-ped stances and running drills on a treadmill. These tested our ability of the 3 fundamental skills of Posture,  Rhythm and Relaxation which are all important to improve your running efficiency and reduce injury risk. These 3 skills were the catch-words of the weekend!

Watching yourself in slow-motion.
We were filmed both on the treadmill and outside, running at various speeds so that we could watch back at slow motion and discuss how we could improve our running techniques. It was fascinating to see how you move, break it down to the fundamentals and then rebuild a more efficient style. At the same time we were discussing the theory behind why the drills are so important to build strength through the elasticity and reactive ability of the neuromuscular system.

On day 2, we started early with a group recovery run. I am particularly bad at these and find it hard to go out for low-intensity runs and always end up pushing myself too hard. So, to prevent this happening Joseph gave us all a piece of tape and told us to stick it over our mouths! This essentially makes you solely breathe through your nose, which ensures you only run at a pace which suits your nasal inhalation. If you run too fast you will want to rip the tape off and gasp air in and out through your mouth….fail! The theory behind this is that your body requires a certain amount of CO2 to allow O2 to pass from your red blood cells to your muscle tissue, so by breathing through your nose limits the amount of CO2 you exhale thus allowing O2 to pass to your muscle tissue and aid with recovery. It worked a treat and although you look slightly odd with your mouth taped shut, it does make you concentrate about your breathing and running pace.

Tape makes for a quiet run!
All in all it was a great weekend and I learnt a lot about how to improve my running technique and the theory behind introducing some drills into my daily workouts to help build strength and prevent injury. After meeting so many interesting and inspirational runners during the weekend and in a moment of madness after the event, I signed up for the Hallands Ultra 50km race next June! That should be a good test of my running efficiency!

11th June 2016!
Visit the BTR website for more information on this course and Lee Saxby.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Brusselsprouts are supposed to taste better after a frost. Fingers crossed. #selfsufficiency

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Sheep Walk

A preview of our sheep walk the other day. We moved them from our neighbours field, along a winding forest track for 2.5km, back home ready for the winter months ahead. It is really nice to have them back and be able to see them everyday.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Seven ladies and a gent are back in our backyard. New blogpost on #paulssonpaleo . #gutefår #selfsufficient

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In the Nick of Time!

Our lovely neighbours have let their huge field in Gårdshult to us, meaning that we could put off feeding hay to our sheep for an additional month. Two hectares go a long way, it seems, even when the grass has stopped growing. 

Being complete beginners when it comes to sheep, we try to keep our eyes and ears trained on the sheep and their habits to ensure that they are happy and healthy. Not that easy, as we have nothing to compare to! A few days ago we did notice that they had started eating heather, which doesn't feature much on their usual menu, so we figured it was time to take them home. 

Si bringing home our lovelies
We've got some grass left in two of our fields, so we thought they could eat that for a few days before we start them on our homegrown diet of dried summer grass (aka hay). We're just a tiny bit nervous about it. What if they don't like it? What if it isn't up to their standards? What if we harvested it all wrong and now it doesn't contain the right nutrients??? The things that you worry about as a new "farmer"...

Anyhow, it seems we brought them home in the nick of time. I am so glad that they are now just outside the house, so we can keep an even closer eye on them. As much as we enjoy running back and forth between our house and Gårdshult, this feels safer. 

The snow doesn't seem to faze them

Testing our new barefoot shoes. Toes still dry and toasty. :-) #paulssonpaleo #lems

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