Monday, 18 March 2013


Running when suffering with stomach issues can be frustrating. One issue that affects me is bloating, this can lead to all sorts of issues, especially on a long run and in the end cause some discomfort on and after the run.

Ive been running now for about 8 years and in that time diet fads have come and go. Ive learnt many things, forgotten many things but generally stuck to the same old things. I'm quite interested in nutrition but would always follow the old rules that Runnersworld told us month in month out, wholemeal with this, pasta with that, blah blah blah.

But things are a changing, in my 8 years of running the Internet has grown, technology has grown and now we all have so much information at our finger tips on our phones and tablets. The information can now be spread a lot quicker.

The new buzz word at the moment is Paleo. As for eating grains, carb loading on pasta and supping on Lucozade this information is fast becoming challenged.

The world of sport nutrition is going through one of its biggest revolutions ever. I've mentioned before on my blog that I attended a lecture by a sports nutritionist at a Premier league football club and they would not touch Lucozade with a barge pole using more natural sources to get their nutritional needs. Science has tried to move nutrition on in recent years but the human diet cannot evolve so quickly, when it has been programmed over thousands of years with what it knows. It is not programmed for sugar, for wheat or bright orange or blue sports drinks. Its programmed for the natural foods that come out of good old mother earth.

So Paleo as you probably know is basically the caveman diet, I've talked about it before on previous posts. I half heartily tried it, gave up and got back to eating toast and porridge. I could manage quite easily, but try feeding a family of four which includes 2 teenagers on meat and veg everyday with no biscuits, chocolate or treats....Hard!

After busting my ankle last week and a bout of gastric flu, I was determined to look harder at our diet as a family. After a good system clean out with the sickness I thought this week would be an excellent time for change and starting again.

So Saturday morning it was time to head to Sainsburys and do battle with the M&M's, bottles of Coke, chicken nuggets and try to find me some mammoth!

I didn't realise how hard this was going to be, sure going through the fruit and veg isles was easy, everything is Paleo suited. Fresh meat isle, again easy, but then it got a little bit more difficult.

The biggest headache is Gluten. Gluten is in just about everything or so it seems when you study the ingredients of different foods.

Suddenly life without wheat made a huge dent in meal options for breakfast and lunch. I still need to get round this one, sending two teenagers to school with pack lunches without Gluten.....tricky!

I'm mainly doing this for my youngest and myself as we both suffer stomach issues. My wife and eldest seem fine and insist on carrying on with their modern day eating, but they are more than happy to eat Paleo main meals, and seeing as I do the cooking, they don't have much choice!

I got some Gluten free cereals, and when buying the dairy items in the shopping, I went for the full lactose free range as this could be another cause of stomach discomforts.

So my new diet is going to be based on Paleo, gluten and lactose free meals....ish. The 'ish' bit means if I come off the waggon once in a while then I'm not going to beat myself up about it, but if I can stick 80-90% paleo then my diet is going to be a hell of a lot better than it has been.

Before I sign off, I must mention an absolute brilliant app and blog that I have found. Its called Nom Nom Paleo and is a must have app to have with loads of brilliant Paleo recipes to follow and picture by picture guides on how to cook them. The app is £3.99 but is worth every penny and is done really well. The blog has all the recipes there too plus a few more I believe.

As I write this I must confess to consuming a tube of chocolate mini eggs, not very Paleo I know, but I'm sure if they were around back then our ancestors would have enjoyed one or two themselves!


  1. I've been Paleo for a little over a year now, strict since last summer. It's essentially cured the IBS that had been giving me trouble for over a decade. I'm not sure if it's the result of the removal of grains and sugar from my diet that has done this, adherence to a FODMAPS diet, all the running and resulting stress reduction, or a combination of these factors. It has certainly resulted in me losing five stone and getting into the best shape of my adult life!

  2. Well done Martin for sticking with Paleo for so long. Sounds like you've had some great results from your running and diet. Thanks for the comment.