I did it! I completed my first ever Whole30®. I made sure to take notes along the way so I could share all the details Post- Whole30.
Let start with the basics:
Why did I do a Whole30®?
Here is an excerpt from the journal I was keeping during my Whole30. This explains it best!
“I have wanted to do Whole30 for over a year now but it has become necessary. I could see my eating habits spiraling out of control. I started eating fast food almost daily, nibbling off the kids plates, decreasing my workouts and increasing my coffee intake. I feel the best way to get back on track is to simply start over. Readjust my tastebuds in relation to sugar and salt. I also felt it would be a great challenge as far as finding tasty and new recipes, different from what we typically enjoy.
I’m apprehensive about doing the Whole30 and immediately reverting back to my poor habits. I’m grateful Jeff has agreed to do it with me though! I love cheese and sweet coffee— these will be my biggest hurdles.”
Did my husband do it with me?
Yes! Jeff readily agreed to do it with me because he too was looking for a fresh start and to establish some better habits. The football season is an absolute whirlwind and towards the end of the year it becomes about survival. He spends majority of his time at the stadium, sleep becomes fitful, and once great eating habits are exchanged for grab-and-go meals. It didn’t take much convincing to get him on board. He was more resistant to change but couldn’t argue with the amazing adjustments in his sleep, skin, and body composition.
What about the kids?
The kids didn’t sign on for the Whole30 per se, but I did attempt to feed them what we were eating with minimal modifications 80%, of the time. Considering the fact that neither of my kids like eggs, they ate prepped, kid-friendly breakfasts while my husband and I enjoyed a more hearty Whole30 breakfast. Lunch was usually leftovers for us, so on the occasion that they didn’t eat dinner with us the night prior, they got fish sticks, peanut butter sandwiches or nuggets (just keeping it real) with a side of crackers and fruit.
One area they made huge improvements was in their snacking. We drastically reduced our snacking and inadvertently the kids did as well. I would put a big bowl of fruit on the table with breakfast and leave it there through lunch. They developed a love for new fruits and request apples, oranges, and kiwi for snack now! My daughter also discovered a new passion for pistachios!
When we first started on Whole30, I was scared to commit to any social engagements for fear of starving and just being irritated that I couldn’t eat anything. I’m proud to say I conquered that fear and learned to enjoy myself regardless of what was on my plate or in my glass.
In addition to my clothes fitting better, I have more energy throughout the day, wake up refreshed, and have found a fun way to challenge myself in the kitchen. I just feel good―- simple as that!
I lost weight and inches but am most proud of my ability to stick to something for 30 days and what that means for the aspects of my life. I started the challenge with a list of potential “outs” and excuses but didn’t let myself use them. I found focus in pursuit of First and Full and started demanding more for myself rather than just hoping for things to happen.
Travel during and after the Whole30?
This was probably the biggest win of the entire experience– we went on a road trip WITHOUT trashy snacks ate out for EVERY meal, as we were staying in a hotel, and stayed on Whole30. I was fearful of sitting in a car, bored for 4 hours with out chips but we did it! We also met up with friends, (at the restaurant of my choice) and had a delicious dinner. I mentioned it on my Instagram story but it was affirming to know we could remove everything that made our Whole30 easy and comfortable and still stick with it!
It took a decent amount of research though. I did a ton of online searches like “Dallas Whole30” “Dallas Paleo Restaurants” “Whole30 Friendly Restaurants” and combed all the message boards looking for ideas. We ate at the same restaurant twice in one day but despite all the work I had to do in advance, I was less stressed about food than ever before!
Would you do it again?
Definitely! I think it will be part of my self-care routine annually or biannual and I will definitely use it as a tool to get back on track when I feel like I’m losing control or just need to get grounded. The goal is to find your food freedom and eat according to what works for you but life happens so I wouldn’t be afraid to schedule another round!
How I am feeling these days…
January was the single best and most productive month I have ever had. By realigning my diet and the way I treated my body, things began to fall in place and goals seemed more attainable. Sounds far fetched right?! I learned that I spent a good deal of energy worrying about food, feeling guilty over poor choices, and then overcorrecting. I was enthralled in a vicious cycle― during Whole30 (after the initial growing pains) I broke the cycle and began allocating energy elsewhere. If ANY part of this sounds like you or you jump from diet to diet or just need some sort of Redo in any aspect of your life― start here. You won’t regret eating better and investing in yourself for 30 days.