- We are Running on Ketones. This is not a typical story; we are endurance athletes at different stages of our lives, who are experimenting with a low carb Ketogenic diet. We are not doctors or scientists, just athletes. Anthony is the youngest and the fastest, age 20, and prefers ultra road running. Eric (ZoomZoom), age 27, is ukulele playing mixed distance runner. Dan (SKA Runner), age 42, is new to running, prefers mountains ultras, and a bit of a computer geek. Bob(uglyrnrboy), age 54, prefers mountains ultras and loves to tele ski. This site,, will document our journey as endurance athletes implementing a low carb ketogenic diet in to our lives. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you have about our experiences.

What is a Nutritional Ketosis Diet? []

The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet. The diet forces the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates. Normally, the carbohydrates contained in food are converted into glucose, which is then transported around the body and is particularly important in fuelling brain function. However, if there is very little carbohydrate in the diet, the liver converts fat into fatty acids and ketone bodies. The ketone bodies pass into the brain and replace glucose as an energy source. This elevated level of ketone bodies in the blood is a state known as ketosis.


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Keto Thanksgiving

In the spirit of the Holidays share what you ate for Thanksgiving, even if it was a cheat.
We did a small keto dinner here is what we had on our table.
Herb Buttered Turkey
Cauliflower Mash Potatoes
Mushroom Gravy
Keto Stuffing wet and dry
Keto Cranberry Sauce
Keto Pumpkin Pie
Baby Bell Cheese
Aged Decanted Red Burgundy from my collection
Younger Rhone White from my collection

Ah, what I miss most from pre Keto days is all the wine I used to drink. My bottles are going to peak before I can drink them all :(

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Getting Faster on a Day Off

Today I'm letting my body soak in the last two weeks of pounding, 200 miles worth. To keep myself entertained and not thinking about another 100 miles due later this week I finally made a serious attempt to contact Bill Fanselow, a team USA mountain runner and a total animal based on his results. But as importantly, he also happens to live just across town from me. But his page wouldn't let my send him a friend request -I didn't realize you could do that! So I sent him a message and hopefully will hear back. I also gave the only phone number I found via internet stalking a cold-call and left a message..
Not sure what kind of person he is. Judging by his Facebook page of 16 friends and single digits for things he "likes" I might be wasting my time trying to contact him. But sure enough one of his few sacred likes was Peter Attia's Eating Academy page, maybe he's a low carber?! And maybe that's my conversation starter with this hermit of a distance phenom.
Both of us being low carb should be enough to base a friendship on in my book!

-G. Anthony Kunkel

The Cracklin Quest

US Wellness meats just announced they are selling pork skins from pastured pigs.
Salt and Pepper
While it is a gigantic health step above all the store bought brands I'm holding out for a non pork option. I put it on their suggested products list along with making them as meaty cracklings instead of just the rinds.
Fingers Crossed.
It probably won't be commercially available for decades to come but GMO has the potential to make pigs healthy:

"We have introduced the humanized version
of the fat-1 gene into pigs by somatic cells nuclear transfer (Lai et al., 2006; Li et
al., 2006). The fat-1 pigs not only have a 3 fold increase n-3 PUFAs, but also reduce
their n-6 PUFAs by 25% since the FAT-1 protein effectively converts n-6 PUFAs into
n-3 PUFAs in those pigs. As a result, the n-6/n-3 ratio has been reduced 5-fold (from
8.52 to 1.69) compared to the control pigs. We have also found that all the tissues
tested from the fat-1 transgenic pigs (heart, muscle, liver, kidney, spleen, brain, skin
and tongue) showed much lower n-6/n-3 ratios than control pigs, indicating that the
fat-1 gene is expressed well in most tissues (Lai et al., 2006; Li et al., 2006)."

Moving on to lambs. I just received a big order of grass fed organ meats from Dakota Harvest Farm
US Wellness has become so popular that they are often sold out of my favorite products.

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A Call for Questions

RunKeto is getting an opportunity to question prominent low carb researcher Dr. William Lagakos. Author of The Poor Misunderstood Calorie a book hailed by Dr Noakes as "The third book in Diet Trinity: 1. Atkins - The Diet Revolution. 2. Good Calories Bad Calories. 3. The Poor Misunderstood Calorie"

If you have any questions about obesity, inflammation, insulin, or energy balance comment below and we will get Dr. Lagakos to answer them.

His website is

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Weight Results First Month

First a little background. I'm not a neophyte to lifting weights. I've lifted regularly year round since 2004 and lifted periodically back to 1998. That being said, I haven't lifted specifically for hypertrophy since 2009. Here are some of my lifts at the start and finish of my first month of keto lifting.

20 Reps

10/11/13 11/11/13
Shrugs 170 270
Barbell Curl 40 50
Leg Press 330 420

Deadlift increased from 1 @ 230 to 3 @ 245

What has this done to my body composition?

Well my waist to hip ratio has gone from .87 to .88 which indicates my %BF has increased :(
Clearly I've put on a ton of mass. 14.5 lbs = 3.63 lbs / week. I know that most of it is water weight but I can't imagine gaining more than 1 lb of muscle per week, and the waist hip ratio increasing probably indicates I gained about the same amount of fat per week.
In regards to calories in calories out, all of this doesn't make any sense. I've been eating slightly more than usual but not an extra 1000 calories a day.

It will be interesting to see what happens in the next month.
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Internet Foods and Weightlifting

Did you know you can order food off of Amazon? I've been doing it for a while now but I was shocked when I first learned from my housemate that she orders Macadamia nuts online. It seems totally obvious now. LOL. So if you are looking to add some variety to your keto diet here are a few switch ups you can make to liven things up. Skip to the bottom to read about weight lifting.

Keto Standard -> Keto Mixup

Erythritol  / Stevia -> Monk Fruit Sweetener (Lo Han Guo)
This is Wheat Belly Dr. William Davis favorite new sweetener. Coincidentally UCAN just came out with a new flavor using this sweetener. I think it has a sort of caramel like after taste. Use the powdered from for baking approximately 1/2 cup for every 1 cup of sugar. Use the liquid drops for coffee and beverages. Using it does not cause my blood ketones to drop. Be wary of brands that add in other nonketo sweeteners!

Nut / Peanut / Coconut Butters -> Peanut Powder (flour, defatted)
The biggest problem with nut butters is that they have tons of inflammatory omega 6 fats. You can mix peanut flour with the oil of your choice and have peanut butter with the fat profile of your chosen oil. I really like using avocado oil and mct oil. Avocado oil doesn't have any aftertaste. 1/4 cup oil to 1 cup flour makes identical peanut butter. Can be used to flavor fat coffee or baked goods too. Try light tasting olive oil, macadamia oil. Unfortunately the peanut powder still has saponins which can punch holes in your gut just like gluten. Unless you are going crazy overload you should be fine.

Cocoa Powder -> Carob Flour
It tastes better now then it did in the 70 and 80s :) . Cocoa powder is high in phytic acid which blocks micro-nutrient absorption so you probably don't want to be pounding it all the time. If you buy it dutched the phytic acid is removed but so are all the nice polyphenols with their associated health benefits. Carob powder adds the same chocolaty taste to your fat coffee (or use it like the peanut powder above) without the acidity of bakers chocolate. Unfortunately just as with the dutched chocolate it is devoid of polyphenols and has no phytic acid. A little more carby than cocoa (still keto friendly!), very little fat or protein, so it makes for a good flavor agent without screwing up your protein fast. If your into that.

Pork Skins -> Fish Maw
I've talked about this one a lot. Same texture but no omega 6. Fish Maw is 100% collagen. You can also put it in soup and it will take on the same texture (and taste) as shark fin (has no taste o.O ) .

Gelatin / Arrowroot ->  Konjac / Glucomannan Flour
This is the same stuff that is in Shiritake Noodles (Nooodle / Miracle Noodle). It is 100% resistant starch. In case you missed all the hoopla about RS it is one of the best foods for controlling blood sugar. You can replace arrowroot flour in any recipe with 1/10 the amount of konjac. It can be used to make the filling of your pies and custards gel up. I haven't tried yet but I bet you could make your own race day shot blocks with this stuff.

So after getting both my parents on the Paleo bandwagon I convinced them to start some weight training. For the last 12 weeks I've been joining them with their POWER LIFTING ex Mr. Universe, ex Worlds Strongest Man, trainer. I've been cajoled into using the winter off season to train for a novice natural physique competition. (This is what it looks like - The trainer is totally on board with me doing this all keto. I've been keeping detailed notes, measurements, and pictures and will be blogging about my progress. Build muscle and cut fat at the same time? Hell ya it can be done, keto style!

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An Extra Benefit of Ketogenic Eating

When looking forward and looking at stage races, another obvious advantage of being keto pops up. Fat is (approximately) 9 calories per gram, and carbs are only 4. Assuming 100% dehydration (impossible) of pastas, fruits, and other carby stage racing staples, the best you could hope for on a 75+% carb diet is about 4.2 grams per calorie, assuming your also consuming some protein (also 4 calories per gram).
A ketogenic athlete can average well over 5 calories per gram (again assuming an impossible 100% dehydration, made less impossible by the fact that oils contain pure energy and no water). If you pack something like grassland beef's (grass fed) pemmican then that'll net you over 4.7 calories per gram by itself and taste good still. Add some grass fed butter/tallow and mct oil gruel to that and you'll be comfortably above 5.5 cal/gram.

So lets say you're carrying 7 days of food, a minimum of 14,000 calories:
-best case scenario for a high-carber (freeze dried meals) is just over 4 cal/gram, maybe 4.2 cal/gram ->so 7.35 pounds of food for 7 days
-reasonable case for a keto athlete (pemmican with added oils and baked kale chips for micro nutrients) could be right around 6 cal/gram ->so 5.14 pounds of food for 7 days

->>So if my math is correct 2.21 pounds saved on total pack weight! And you would have a palatable meal plan in my book, albeit a bit spartan.

I'm looking hopefully at numbers like these as I start looking at stage racing as my next logical option. I naturally have excellent recovery and my body feels better running the day after a heavy training day than it does the day before, and since removing carbs I've enjoyed even faster recovery from hard races. I seems like I'm destined to get into this type of running since I:
-want to be competitive
-am not fast enough on the accents or shorter stuff to make that my focus
-don't want to get into 100's and beyond until I'm older and slower
-recover very quickly and have never been injury-prone
-enjoy planning out the logistics

The only part that doesn't fit me perfectly with stage racing is the cost. So if you thought this post was an interesting take on low-carb athletics, please help me race the Atacama Crossing by donating a few dollars and then stay tuned for my podium-finish post about the race!

Keto Key Lime Pie

This one is personal size. On a larger one there is a cookie crumble crust to go with it.

Is Carbonated Water Bad for You?

skarunner[1]After reading Trevor’s comments/question on diet pop from the RunKeto discussion board, it got me thinking about all the gas water I drink.  Eight years ago I completely gave up pop, aside from occasionally mixing lemon Fanta with both beer and wine; NOW, I am addicted to gas water.  Literally!  Looking at myGasWater work area from last night,  I counted at least 11 empty cans.   It is just water right? With a burn!  I drink Kroger with a hint of lemon and buy 2 –3 cases at a time. 

Many people have told me that it is bad . . .but is it?  In fact, the other day, during a run, a person was preaching to me that it causes osteoporosis.  So am I doing harm? I don’t think so . . .


Here is an article I came across that discusses just that.

Scrabble not a boardgame

Made with coconut flour instead of almond flour. Texture of bread and nutrients of organmeets in one package. No inflamation promoting omega 6.

Mushroom Shrimpballs

I'll be posting lots of food for the next 20 days as I'm doing 21 days of sqeeky clean paleo-keto.

Stuffed Bell Pepper in Slow cooker

Put this in overnight then its ready for breakfast in the morning or put it in Tupperware for lunch. Recipe from paleo slowcooker cookbook.