What did I learn?
- My cravings were reduced to nothing after the first week.
- I felt more in control of my emotions/had better responses to stressful situations. These 4 weeks weren’t exactly a walk in the park at home or work but it felt way more manageable than normal. Maybe because I wasn’t using food as a crutch to help me get through it.
- I stopped thinking about food all the time. I’d think about it right before meals and that was about it. Toward the end I was thinking about cheese now and again but overall food thoughts were very minimal.
- It wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. I’ve tried Paelo a couple of times and burned out really fast. I was more prepared this time around and also eliminated a lot more food options. For whatever reason that helped.
- The first week felt hard, the second not so bad and the 3rd/4th weeks were good.
- If prepared, the food can be delicious.
- Sugar is in many, many foods. Beef broth? Check. Bacon? Check. Deli meat? Check. Pasta sauce? Definitely. It was eye-opening and helpful to really look for sugar in foods, as well as other awful additives like MSG.
- I lost 15.4 lbs! I admit I was shocked when I jumped on the scale. Even at my very best on weight watchers or other programs, I would lost 2 lbs a week max. Since I wasn’t suppose to weigh myself until after the 30 days (I stuck to that), I had no idea what to expect. I figured between 5-8 lbs lost. I am thrilled with the results, considering I didn’t feel deprived after that first week.
- Although it took almost 4 weeks, my skin looks much better now. A huge improvement from the beginning.
- My energy levels have been fantastic. I don’t get the high/low swings, even when I have to get up with Terak in the middle of the night.
- No afternoon “I need coffee” moments.
- It was only 30 days. I kept reminding myself of that when I had doubts.
- I’ve never had a successful ‘satisfied’ signal until doing the whole30. I’d be eating and all of a sudden feel full and not overeat. Since I wasn’t weighing myself I sorta thought maybe I was just eating a lot of food and was actually stuffed. Looking back, I don’t think that was the case.
- Way more time prepping meals in the kitchen. Even though I planned out my meals ahead of time and made them all on the weekend, it was still a lot of work since Bill and I eat different meals.
- The cost of buying all grass-fed, organic, and fresh produce can be expensive. Canned foods, rice, pasta, breads, etc. are much cheaper!
- Restaurant choices are limited so eating out can be difficult.
- Events like parties and social gatherings can be difficult if wanting to stay with the program.
- Eating so pure makes even small amounts of non-healthy food feel like you’ve eaten poison – my body reacts very strongly.
The benefits I received from the whole30 eating style are too significant to ignore so I plan to use that as my base eating plan. I’ve added back in dairy for now to see how I do with it back and if I have any reactions or issues. If I’m at a social gathering, party, or vacation, I’ll relax a little more but will try to balance that with other paleo-based eating in between.
Bottom line: I’m a whole30 believer!
Ah. It’s 7pm which means my last meal on the whole30 is done! I have many revelations and lots to say about the program but I’ll save that for when I have time. In the meantime, count on me eating cheese and weighing myself in the morning!
Tomorrow is my last day of the whole30 and I’m so excited! I really proved to myself this was all possible and the outcome was awesome. I’ll do a more thorough write up later this week or weekend on everything I learned and how the reintroduction of dairy went. But as of today, I’m a believer! What a program.
I think one of the hardest parts of the program is that I’m preparing completely separate meals for the family. Terak isn’t as much of an issue since he’s pretty flexible and will eat what I eat, but Bill is trying to avoid tomatoes and eggs and I rely heavily on both of them. I end up spending a good chunk of Saturday preparing my meals and then a good chunk of Sunday helping Bill prepare his. I’m hoping to be able to rectify that situation at some point – maybe when Bill gets rid of his nagging cough.
Friday and Saturday went off without a hitch and I managed to eat well and stay energized on both days. I’m still in disbelief that the 30 days has gone by so quickly. In the beginning it was tough but now it just does feel pretty normal.
I cooked my weekly foods yesterday morning and will be having apples w/ almond butter for breakfast, chili on a sweet potato for lunch, and curried broccoli soup for dinner. On Wednesday when this program is over, I’ll change my breakfast to scrambled eggs w/ cheese and sausage and add some sour cream and cheese to my chili. I’m also making a quiche that has cheese on Wednesday. My goal isn’t to go overboard with the cheese, I know I need to keep it in moderation, but it will be nice to have a little back regardless!
I was thinking that I really have 5 days left today since today is a full day and I’m still on the program through the 30th. That being said, it’s getting close to being complete. My pants are looser, I have awesome energy (even though I was up at 6 and didn’t sleep that well), I’m excited about cooking delicious meals, etc. I did enjoy getting some cheeses this week at the grocery store though and a bottle of wine! That will be a nice easy way to come off of the program but still enjoy Thanksgiving. We’re being non-traditional and still sticking pretty closely to the whole30 guidelines – keeping away from the white flour/sugar stuff. My skin has been looking better again so I don’t want to get too carried away.
Meal planning and grocery shopping has definitely been more of a hurdle since it takes a while for me to plan my meals out separately from Bill’s meals. He’s actually following the same program now but he thinks he has a reaction to eggs and maybe tomatoes and I rely heavily on both each week! So that’s been a challenge. But overall, we’re hanging in there and feeling healthier by the day!
Only 5 days left of this crazy program! I was able to add back in some dairy for next week’s menu starting on Wednesday. I’m really looking forward to Wednesday being a fun day next week. I’ll finally be able to jump on the scales to see if I’ve lost weight, I’ll be able to have scrambled eggs and cheese for breakfast, T and I will do some final Christmas shopping, maybe enjoy a lunch out somewhere, and then that evening I’ll get my hair trimmed and highlighted for the holidays. Sounds like a great plan to me!
Work has been kicking my butt so it’s been harder these last couple of days not to want to stray a bit and eat some cheese at least! But I’ve been steadfast and know it will pay off. The fact that I can have energy after these stressful days is a testament alone I guess!
I have under a week left to go! This week’s grocery list will get to include some dairy and I’m very much excited about that. I’m hoping to learn that the reintroduction next Wednesday (a week from today!) will go well and I won’t have any side effects like bloating, headaches, etc. If I’m truly sensitive to dairy, I might cry! I love my cheese. Although sometimes people can have cheese and not other forms. But it will be nice to reintroduce yogurt as well – if just for marinating meat alone! I’m looking forward to it.
Day 23 went along just lovely. No issues, no hunger, no energy drops – just happy and balanced. It’s such a nice feeling! Work has been really busy and hard to manage so it’s nice to have control of something, especially when that something gives me a nice even keel to work from. Otherwise, I’d be having headaches each day, eating lots of junk and probably continuing to gain weight from all the stress. I’m hoping everything quiets down soon and I can move on from the stress alone!
Started this morning eating two mini bison burgers/patties, a handful of berries and some nuts. Lunch is mushroom soup and dinner will be eggplant with meat sauce.
The weekend was packed with activities but yet my energy stayed strong throughout. So nice!