Salad Days

But on I stay on where do I get off?
On to greener pastures
The core is getting soft

Do you remember the time (I don’t know)
We’ll call these our salad days
– Minor Threat ‘Salad Days’

For Minor Threat the ‘Salad Days’ EP marked their departure from the old fashioned punk sound. There’s a certain remorse to it. ‘The core is getting soft’, it was also the end for one of the most ground breaking bands. Onward to something new, to something more mature to keep the wits as sharp and powerful as before. The song is about age, experience and insights that come with it. In this blogpost I want to write about things I chose to change.

I eat salad every lunch break, that’s my choice. I consider these my Salad days and I think they might stick around. There’s no political or environmental reason to my diet. I have a diet, indeed. In so far as diet means your conscious eating pattern, I do. I try to eat Paleo as much as possible. To really explain what that is, I will let you read this here.  Simply said: no sugars, no grains, no dairy, no legumes… I eat meat, veggies, eggs and nuts. I drink tea, coffee and water most of the time, sometimes a glass of wine.

Now, you might say: “This is not true, I’ve seen you eat chips!” You are probably right. Possibly you also saw me having a beer or eat some kind of bakery. Why? Firstly, because I’m not ‘holier than thou’. I’ve eaten potatoes and bread my whole life and it’s no easy transition to just stop eating that. Really, it was not an easy switch and the first weeks I had a lot of headaches from the whole detox proces. I still love chips now and then, but more and more their after effect on my constitution makes me pass on them.

Secondly, I’m not eating this way to prove a point to anyone else. Ofcourse, I feel a certain appreciation towards the general concept behind this diet, but I have the same to most of those. I loved the Krishna thing and the straight edge movement, but I just couldn’t work with that. Neither was it really good for me. So since I’m doing this for myself, I don’t have to ‘Keep The Edge’ or so for anyone else. When I fail myself by eating a pack of cookies, the only one who has a right to be upset with myself is me. Simple as that, there’s no political side to my lifechoice. Ofcourse I totally feel sympathetic to movements that support cleaner food, but it really had no influence on my choice, it’s a thing outside of it.

Thirdly, I firmly believe that the body needs a kick against its proverbial backside now and then. If you have  a fever, a shower with real hot and then real cold water really shakes it off a bit. It can really help to get in the cold with a cold. I can continue with the value of shocking your body now and then. The same goes with a lot of detox programs or even when you go drinking for the night. You test your body, you shock it and it reacts. I notice that the shock of eating something like chips or pizza once a week, not only satisfies the craving you will inevitably face, it also kicks my body into the next week in a way. I’m not an expert, but it’s either something physical, or the mental inspiration and motivation to start your next week good. For me this really works well.

About that then…

Fourth, I’m not a wealthy man. I can not buy myself all the insane products that American supermarkets have in stock. I have to deal with a budget form of eating paleo and you can easily see how meat, fruit and vegetables are comparitively the most exensive products on the shelves. Also, go ahead and try to eat paleo in a restaurant; it’s not possible. In the USA they probably have those, but not here. There’s literally nothing to eat for the diet exept a salad. You wouldn’t want to hamper your social contacts in that way, so it’s up to me, as a follower of the diet, to make up my own choices on the topic.

Now, I have to be honest. I feel a bit prinicpal about it, which might come from listening to those hardcore bands all my life. I feel like I’ve created with my gym and food regimen a pretty strict lifestyle that really works for me. The big advantage of not eating so many sugars is mainly that you start feeling much more energetic. I was struggling with energy peaks and lows a lot before. I feel sharper, more awake, more aware and more on top of things. That might have to do with a general switch, but I think I’ve been building towards it for a long time by working out and now living healthy by eating healthy. The downside is that you really can’t handle alcohol anymore. That in turn is a good reason to enjoy your one special beer a lot more than having 15 lagers without any joy to them.

Much has been written on paleo and alcohol..

Now, I’ve not been great at holding my ground on that ever, so it was a good reason to really change my mentality towards alcohol in general. Did I mention that this diet really supports a schedule where you visit the gym a couple of times a week? By visiting I don’t mean guzzling sports drinks and watching the telly. I talk about working out on just water for 2 hours. Because you eat a lot of eggs in the diet, you basically already got your whey in your belly.

The bottom line is that it makes me feel good. I try my best to grow in it and develop my range of recipes so I can stop eating all those addictive other foods. If you feel you couldn’t do that, then you should probably not even start this. If you feel you could, but it would take time, I encourage you to try this for a while. Go for a month of rather strict following and you’ll feel if it does for you what you hoped. The only reason I do this, I can’t stress enough, is for myself. That’s the best motivation you can have I think.

I don’t see my choice as the best there is, I see it as what works best for me now and what I hope to grow in. If you have a similar path or are you interested in this one, let me know, get in touch.

Keep your own edge! It’s what Minor Threat did.


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