Whole30: Week 4~ And then the Magic Happened!

Day 30 is today and I am happy with the results. I feel tighter and more toned and can see a glimmer of abs, which hasn’t happened since before baby number one so I’m good with this. The “magic” in week 4 was worth sticking it out…

1. I’m not craving junk. Yup, a miracle. Don’t get me wrong, pizza makes me drool and I would LOVE a Smashburger, bun included. I’m not actually, physically, craving it though. In my head, YES I want it, but I want a fresh caprese salad from V Pizza even more. Is this even possible?!!!

2. Coffee, coconut milk, and stevia. For those that know me even a little, you’ve probably noticed I am coffee OBSESSED. The thought of coffee without cream and raw sugar was the worst part of the Whole30 for me. I know that seems ridiculous, but the struggle is real friend. I can hardly get the words out, but the truth is I can live without the cream and sugar. Coconut milk (canned, unsweetened) and stevia drops work for me. This is some serious MAGIC.

3. Eat to live vs. live to eat?!! Super weird territory for me because I am a LIVE TO EAT person, but without the cravings, food isn’t SO dramatic for me. I’m still enjoying my food, but I am more content eating fresh whole food than lusting after a blizzard. Yes, this is a strange development…

The plan going forward? I feel good so more of the same! I will be adding some whole grains like ezekiel bread and brown rice on occasion as well as dairy on occasion, but otherwise, I plan to continue eating this way! Let’s see how it goes =)

Whole30~ Week 3: Just when I thought I was OVER it…

Whole30 on?

I’m not gonna lie, week 3 was TOUGH. I started feeling tired again this week which was a bit discouraging since I’d already gone through that in the first week. I realized though that my food prep was not nearly as good this week. I’ve been eating a ton of fruit and nuts and not enough protein… Pretty much the opposite of last week’s goals. This does not work well for me (and my blood sugar). When I get on the blood sugar roller coaster I inevitably reach for more coffee, albeit black, and more carbs.

There are some things that I’m realizing this week as well.

1. This is a bit extreme. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I’m doing this. I’m enjoying the fact that I’m preparing healthy whole food meals and feeling trimmer. I will say though, that there is something to making peace with food and creating some balance with it. I do think this is an eye opening experience, but ultimately NOT something to sustain long term, for me.

2. In my head I eat like this all the time. Reality, however, begs to differ. I DO eat a mostly whole foods diet including whole grains and some dairy normally, but the Whole30 has shown me that I’ve been straying a bit further off track than usually lately.

3. The Whole30 is still a DIET. Yeah, no one likes to use the “D” word, but here it is folks. This is a diet. This is not a sustainable way to eat throughout your life. If you’re paleo happy and never eat pizza again, I take it back, maybe this IS for you. For me, however, I’m going to eat pizza again, and I’m gonna LOVE it. I warn everyone in the middle of their Whole30 against lusting after every cheat food you see and putting it on your wish list of crap you’re planning to go face first into after you’re done with this awful plan… that will be cause for some MAJOR rebound! My goal is to use this as a template to build on. Hence, discovery number 4.

4. This IS a plan to build on. Part of me is SOOO over this, but the other part is really glad to be laying the foundation to eat a truly whole foods diet from square one. The things I am REALLY missing at this point are some whole grains and vegetarian meals (legumes included). Those will be the foods I add back first to see how I feel. I don’t eat much dairy and have generally been opposed to including a lot of it in my food plan. I am definitely looking forward to that pizza though… TBC.

Whole30~ 7 Tips for Making it HAPPEN!

SO, you went on to the website, read about it, thought about it, thought about it again… now here’s how to take it and run. I’ve just completed week 3 and here are my tips for getting through it without making your life miserable!

1. Print off the Whole30 docs. Yes, it seems easy enough; eat veggies, meat, fruit, blah blah, but you want the grocery list. Print it and take it with you shopping. They also offer a bunch of other guides for specific needs ex: vegetarian/vegan shopping list, good meat guide, etc.

2. Buy pre-chopped, pre-cooked, and frozen. There are some of you domestic gods and goddesses that are magic in the kitchen (aka: people unlike myself), but for the rest of us mere mortals, paying the extra couple dollars on your grocery bill for these shortcuts is WELL worth it. I also keep lots of individually portioned meat, organic fruit and veggies in the freezer to have for days when you need to fill in the blanks. I LOVE Costco for the freezer food. Some of my favorite Trader Joe’s finds: pre-chopped veggies, pre-cooked grass-fed beef sirloin, pre-cooked pork carnitas, and peeled garlic in these awesome single portioned packs!

3. Drink up. You might be amazed by the amount of BLOAT you experience in the first week and a half. The added fiber from all the veggies and the increase in protein (for many people) leads to this perfect storm of bloat. Drink extra water or unsweet tea with fresh squeezed lemon to help flush out your system and move things along.

4. View your Sunday shop and prep as mandatory. If you want to successfully complete your Whole30, pick a day to shop and prepare some food and make it part of your week. As the saying goes; failing to prepare is preparing to fail. It’s a must.

5. A.C.E. Always. Cook. Extra. For my Sunday prep, I like to throw the veggies, a dozen eggs, and whatever meat we’re having for dinner all in at one time. Just remember how much you have in there or you’ll end up forgetting the brussel sprouts for a few days until the whole house smells REALLY bad… oh yes I did.

6. Get a few kitchen supplies. I recommend getting some glass tupperware if you don’t have it already. I like glasslock containers because you can microwave in them as well. They have them at Costco right now too. If you haven’t checked out the Spiralizer or another way to make veggie pasta, I’d get one. You’re gonna miss pasta- at least I did- and for $15 you can spiral zucchini till your heart’s content. They have them at Bed Bath and Beyond and, of course, Amazon. Get a legit lunchbox if you work away from home and snack sized baggies (reusable if possible) or small plastic containers to help bring what you need for the day. I do love a reason to shop even if this isn’t the most exciting stuff.

Spiralizer- officially a fan!! Whole 30- getting ready 😜 #bikinibootcampjax

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7. Let your friends and family know your plans. Granted, they may not want to hear it, but if you are planning to dine with people during your Whole30 (let’s hope you are lol) it will help to let them know how you’re eating. Most people DON’T want to sabotage your efforts so let them know what you’re up to and rally their support! You never know… someone might even join you!

Whole30: Week 2- Six Discoveries

SO, it does get easier in week two in some ways and harder in others… Some of my discoveries for the week:

1. A fried egg (or two) can make ANYTHING taste good. I mean green beans, spinach, kale, plain beef patty- you name it- fried egg.

Two eggs over green beans and garlic potatoes 😋 #weirdbutgood #whole30 #whole9 #bikinibootcampjax #paleo #breakfast

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2. I’m eating waaaay too much fruit and nuts. It’s my favorite thing and it’s Whole30 approved, but I have to limit it… I’m very sensitive to sugar in my diet and the natural kind is no exception. Don’t get me wrong, I do believe in eating fruit and healthy fat, but eating it because I want energy and not to satisfy hunger isn’t ideal. Plus, once I started with the dates and almond butter it was O-VER.

Afternoon snack. Berries, coconut milk, cashews. #bikinibootcampjax #whole30 #healthysnacks

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3. Ground beef with lots of garlic and onion works REALLY well. I have only in the last few years become a red meat eater and since becoming allergic to chicken rely on it quite a bit. This combo over fresh or grilled veggies is SO good and really make eating a bowl full of spinach with no dressing amazingly palatable!

 

4. You can still overeat healthy food. Okay I knew this one. Just because it’s healthy food, doesn’t mean you have to join the clean plate club or ignore your hunger cues. I ‘ve been rushing to eat meals so I’d like to be more mindful of when I’m full and just slow down.

5. I always say that preparation is key for healthy living, but with the Whole30 it’s mandatory. Being hangry is no joke and when you add the fact that you’re likely going to have to cook or take a little time preparing something, it can get UGLY. You just simply have to be willing to plan in advance for meals. Period.

6. Convenience foods don’t work for me. I LOVE bars. I can happily eat a bar for any meal, or unfortunately, all of them. I tried the RxBar in coffee flavor and am obsessed, but they just become candy bars to me and soon I’m eating 3 a day. No good. Calorie dense and super convenient is not a winning combination.

 

Goals for next week: 

1. No dried fruit.

2. Keep the Sunday shop and food prep going.

3. Eat more fish and seafood versus red meat.

4. Stop eating three hours before bedtime.

Whole30: Week 1 Recapped

Whole30 Timeline Week 1

I can save you a few minutes by saying this picture very accurately sums up my week one!! The tiredness is real and the want for coffee and sugar are TOUGH to overcome, but there are a few really nice discoveries in this first week…

1. I am learning to cook, quickly! This is like taking a crash course in cooking because having enough whole foods ready to eat takes some preparation and creativity if you don’t want to be at the grocery store all week.

Leftover pork, green beans, and zucchini, on shredded cabbage. #bikinibootcampjax #lunch #whole30 #paleo

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2. Vegetables are great at breakfast. They are filling and add a nice boost of healthy carbs to my mornings… Just need to get the packing togo a little better sorted. Lol

A little different #breakfasttogo #bikinibootcampjax #whole30

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3. I am a HUGE fan of Trader Joe’s. I admit that when Trader Joe’s came to our area this year, I just wasn’t that impressed. Since starting this Whole30, though, I’ve scored some AWESOME additions to our meals and have been finding new things each time I go back that make it easier to get food on the table- big plus with two little ones at home.

Sunday shop! Getting ready for week 2 😜 #bikinibootcampjax #whole30 #traderjoes

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4. Coffee always has, and always will be, my best friend. I’ve been drinking bulletproofs with ghee and coconut milk, or shots of espresso with cinnamon. I seriously miss my cream and raw sugar, but am realizing how much I rely on the sugar as a pick-me-up.

4:00 "Treat" lol… Black coffee with cinnamon 😏#whole30 #bikinibootcampjax #thestruggleisreal

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5. I am a Sugar-Junkie. Okay, I’ve known this for a long time. I LOVE sugar and when I am sitting down to my fruit, coconut milk, and nuts, I know that this is as good as ice cream to me… and I need to slow my roll on the fruit. Junkie.

All-in-all I’m happy with week 1. I’m feeling trimmer, the bloating (that is kind of gnarly) is gone and I feel less food cravings. I need to back off the fruit and salt, but otherwise am pretty pleased. I want to eat a grilled cheese, french fry, pizza, but I think I can do this. =)