Bloodwork and the Advocare 24-Day Challenge

One of the benefits of doing the 24-Day Advocare Challenge in June was that it overlapped nicely with my yearly physical. I’ve been struggling for years with keeping my cholesterol and triglycerides in check, so I was curious how these dietary changes might benefit the numbers even over such a short stretch of time.

Heart Rate

simplestethoscopeLet’s start with my heart rate, which has nothing to do with my cholesterol or triglycerides but has fluctuated over the last few years. Thanks to my provider, I have online records that go back quite a ways now.

When I started crossfit I had a checkup. That was February 2013 and it was at 82 beats per minute. Since then it has been as low as 59 and as high as 89.

This week it was at 64 bpm, which is pretty good. Normal is between 60 and 100.

Blood Pressure

Heart-EKG-ImprovedBlood pressure has also varied over the years. Back in February 2013 it was at 122/88. Since then it’s been as high as 138/84 or 132/88.

This week we were at 118/68, which is awesome. I’ve gone from “prehypertension” to “normal”, which is a good change.

Blood Work

gringer-Blood-tube-vaccuum-styleWe’re now on day 20 of the challenge and I had my blood work done on day 15 (June 2016). And the last blood work I had done was in June 2015.

  • Cholesterol – old 232, new 205
  • Triglycerides – old 210, new 119 (significant drop)
  • HDL – old 49, new 46 (not sure why it dropped)
  • LDL Calc – old 141, new 135
  • Non-HDL Calc. – old 183, new 159
  • LDL (Direct measurement) – old 159, new 130

Overall, we see a good trend with those numbers.

A few things pop out here. First, I had zero coffee (and thus no creamer of any sort) for two weeks by this point. And zero alcohol. I suspect that the latter part of that (the alcohol) was the shift for the triglycerides and the diet changes in general (going more paleo again) were to blame for the cholesterol changes.

I have zero clue about the HDL at this point. My workouts have remained pretty steady – 3 or 4 days usually at crossfit. So it’s not as though I’ve stopped moving. That should be rising, not falling. We’ll keep an eye on it.

Almost Done

advocare-24-day-challenge-logoSo we’re almost done with the challenge itself. Weight-wise I have lost nothing more since the first 7-10 days on the cleanse portion of the plan. I’m holding pretty steady at 233/234, which is 6-7 pounds down from where I started.

Though I think the challenge definitely helped as far as blood work went, I don’t see it doing much for me in the later parts of the process. We have a few days left and then we’ll adjust a little.

Next Steps

Once the 24-Day Challenge is over, I’d like to do the following:

  • Continue with the meal planning. Coming up with a list of dinner options for the week has made a big difference and I hope we can keep it up.
  • Do less with Spark and add in a little coffee, but not go crazy. One cup in the morning and then Spark in the afternoon.
  • Add back in fiber in the mornings.
  • Continue with snacks in the morning and afternoon to keep energy up.
  • Occasionally have an adult beverage, but keep it to a minimum.

My ultimate goal is to continue to shed weight. I am holding at 233/234 but I’d like to be down another 10-20 pounds by the end of the year. Is that possible? No clue. But we’ll give it a shot.

But there you have the numbers so far. Probably more than you wanted to know about my inner workings, but there you have it.

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