Transformation 5.0

Food Logs, Inspiration, and Halfway There


Have you ever kept a food log?

Self imposed accountability is tremendously powerful.  The simple act of writing down what you eat – on a napkin, in a journal, or through a spreadsheet – forces you to think through what you consume.  It is a tried and true way to get over a hump, get back on track, and/or assist various forms of self-experimentation.

Want to supercharge the food log process?  Take pictures of your food before you eat it as a rule (sound familiar?)  That is accountability on Raw Tea.

While I don’t believe in food logs as a long-haul activity, I wholeheartedly believe in their consistent use for beginners, their semi-regular use for the intermediate, and as periodic check-ins for the advanced.  I’m obviously food logging daily at the moment, and I’m finding it useful in the context of an aggressive challenge.  Once the Transformation ends, I’ll revert to my usual – logging a day every month or two.

Every single time I log my food, I learn something.  That is not an exaggeration.


Introducing Geoff Spakes

Food logs are the perfect segue to an introduction.  Allow me to introduce you to Geoff Spakes.  Geoff, along with his partner Bill Haley, recently created a new podcast – Primal Run Geek.

The guys had me on for Episode #5 of their show, and among other things food logs were a topic of conversation.  I was fascinated by Geoff’s process, which leverages the Go – Meal and Fitness Tracker app.  The app characterizes food by color and activity by intensity.  Geoff’s quote says it all: “it makes me think before I mindlessly eat something”.

He sent me a follow-up message with his tracking process, and with his permission, here is that message:

Here’s how I’ve classified the colors for my own diet; hopefully some of your clients may find it useful.
• A strict or primarily paleo compliant meal; ex: a sprinkling of dairy is okay, but not an overindulgence.)
• Mostly primal compliant meal, with items that I want to eat in moderation.
• Rice, white potatoes, cheese, dairy, etc.
• Small serving of a primal sweet treat.
• Primal compliant, but don’t want to eat often or in great quantities.
• Hard cider, tequila, corn, primal sweet treats, gluten free substitutes, etc.
• Totally not allowed!!
• Beans, grains, beer, foods fried in SAD oil, etc. 
• Over-indulgence of a primal “orange” allowable item.
• Small Snack: Half a serving or less.
• Snack: A single serving, possibly from a single food group.
• Light Meal: A complete meal but smaller than your typical meal.
• Meal: A standard sized meal with portions from multiple food groups. You should feel satisfied but not stuffed.
• Large Meal: You’ll feel stuffed after this meal.
• Easy: Any activity that barely warms you up like a casual walk or low intensity exercises like stretching.
• Moderate: Your body should warm up enough to get a little sweat going, but your breathing should still be normal. Examples are a fast walk, light weight lifting, or housework.
• Hard: You should be breathing hard but still able to hold a conversation. Examples include jogging at a fast pace, calisthenics, or playing sports.
• Tough: Not quite your all, but pretty close. You should work up a sweat pretty quickly and should be breathing hard. Examples include a fast run, intense calisthenics, or playing rigorous sports.
• Hardcore: Only serious athletes can maintain this level of activity for more than a few minutes. You can include your rest time in the session time since your heart will likely still be pumping pretty hard as you try to catch your breath. Examples include sprinting and high intensity interval training. This is your maximum effort.


Whether you give the Go app a shot or whether you track your food through smoke signals, it doesn’t matter.  It is the act itself that matters.  Give it a whirl!

Thanks to Geoff and Bill for having me on the show, and best of luck with the podcast’s evolution!

Day 35 Recap

35 down, 35 to go.  That’s right – the Transformation has reached its halfway mark.  Wow.  I’m doing full recaps at the 1/3 and 2/3 marks, so I don’t want to pause too long here, but it’s still fulfilling to cross 50%.  Onward and upward!

Monday exercise – the protocol:

3x through, no rest between exercises, 1:00 between rounds:

  • Alternating grip pull-up
  • Leg press
  • Dumbbell chest press

3x through, no rest between exercises, 1:00 between rounds:

  • Cable row
  • Dumbbell walking lunge
  • Dumbbell seated overhead press
  • Dumbbell reverse fly

3x through, no rest between exercises, :30 between rounds:

  • Straight bar pulldown
  • Dumbbell alternating front-lateral raise
  • Dumbbell skull crusher
  • Dumbbell standing bicep curl
  • Dumbbell single leg calf raise

The sun was shining and post-workout heat/Vitamin D was in full effect.  I have to say, it really takes the mental experience to another level.  30 minutes in the sun to enjoy a job well done.

Steps and miles checked in at 13,919 and 7.48 (add 20%).

Sleep checked in at 8 hours and 2 minutes (29 restless minutes, 1 awake minute).  I forgot to switch my Fitbit out of sleep mode for a decent stretch of time.  Fortunately it logged this time as restless (although it was definitely awake), so my total sleep time likely isn’t off by more than 5 minutes.  It was actually a pretty sound night of sleep, so I’m going to take the liberty of adjusting actual sleep time to 7 hours and 57 minutes (-5) and adjusting restless minutes to 9 (-20).

The nutrition

Breakfast: Grass-fed yogurt, (28g) whey protein isolate, (5g) creatine, raw cacao nibs, chia seeds, coconut flakes, organic blueberries, banana, cinnamon.  Black gold.

Day 15 Breakfast

Pre-Workout: Raw Tea.


Post-Workout: Grass-fed whole milk.

Day 14 Post Workout

Lunch: Leftover free range chicken breast, brown rice pasta, green peas, asparagus, fresh avocado, fish oil, probiotic.


Afternoon Snack: Rise Bar.


Dinner: Duck breast, roasted potatoes, asparagus.  Simple and delicious.


Daily Fuel

I love it when individuals who have something to say begin inspiring others.  I was one such individual a handful of years ago, and I was inspired by a host of others who were putting themselves out there.  The cycle of inspiration is powerful!

Yesterday, Phil aka BJJ Caveman, dropped by Relentless Fitness to say hello.  It was great chatting and even better to see that he’s putting forth his own content, which centers around self-experimentation.  If you’re interested in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, sleep trackers, carb backloading, resistant starch, and other such things, go give his blog a look.

You don’t have to share your own story via blog, but inspire someone else today, will you?

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