i never thought i was the type of person that didn't finish things, but i think i might be. i also fully admit that i am one to jump on fads, try them out, and then ditch them for the next big thing.
so when i decided in late june to do whole30, i remember assuming that i would not be able to make it through one weekend without cheating, and then eventually ditching the program on day 8 or 9.
but this time, i made it.
and it feels sooooooo good.
if you're not familiar with whole30, it's basically a 30 day paleo eating diet that follows the idea around eating only whole foods. it sounds fairly easy when i pose it like that...but here are just a few of the restrictions:
- No legumes
- No dairy
- No grains
- No sugar (meaning...you can't have ANYTHING that has sugar, high fructose corn syrup, stevia, or any of the fancier definitions of the word sugar as well in the ingredient list of any foods that you eat.) This basically cuts out a lot of salad dressings, condiments and even things like salsa!
- No Alcohol
- No Vanilla Extract (which I thought was weird...but you find it in some nutrition bars, etc.)
there are several other things that are too hard to explain, but here is their website that is obviously very helpful. It outlines shopping lists, guides to eating out, a glossary of all the code words used for SUGAR, and several other great tips that I printed out and kept with me to reference whenever I needed it.
anyway, the point of this post is to explain how these last 30 days affected me, and what i think is so amazing about the program.
i always thought i was a good eater. i ate vegan for a long time, never drank pop, ate carbs but wasn't excessive about my pasta or bread intake, and drank a glass of wine or an almond milk white russian once in awhile (ok, it was probably more like often.) i bought organic when i could, knew the "dirty dozen" and "clean fifteen" and thought that was enough.
and to be honest, this program started for me as a weight loss mechanism. i have been hanging on to an extra 5-7 lbs that i really didn't like. my clothes were tight. i realized i wasn't walking into my closet with the ability to wear anything, and i was a little self conscious on my "so called fat days." and to explain my "so called fat days", these are days that came from me obsessing about the scale. i was completely addicted. every morning i woke up, went to the bathroom, and then hopped on the scale (obviously stripping my tank top that couldn't have weighed more than air) and waited for the dreaded number that would come up. if i was under a number i had made up in my head, today would be a good day, and if i was over...well then game over, folks.
it literally would ruin my day before it had even started.
i didn't realize how big of an issue this was, until it wasn't an issue anymore. part of the program means you are not allowed to weigh yourself. they actually say that you should get rid of your scale completely. this was one of my biggest fears when i started. i felt like i wouldn't know how much i could eat if i didn't get on the scale.
then the program started to work.
i realized that i didn't care what the scale said, because i knew that i had only put GOOD THINGS into my body.
i was eating to fuel my body instead of stay at a certain weight. eventually the outside would mirror the inside, but even if it didn't, the inside is what matters.
more and more realizations came, and each day my body thanked me for treating it a little bit better. i realized that a lot of the stuff i ate before was full of things i couldn't pronounce. and i was amazed at the sugar that is added to nearly everything (salsa, sausage, dried fruit, most tomato sauces, and so much more!) now i take the time to read the ingredient list, and make the decision to only buy things that i can pronounce. i've realized that the best meal often has less ingredients, and that herbs can go a long way.
i'm actually sort of obsessed with this program now. i want all my friends and family to try it, because although it's tough for those 30 days, if you can get through it, the results are amazing.
i am sitting here typing on my 30th day, and I am just about to re-introduce some things into my diet, and although i'm nervous to not have a set of "rules" to guide me, i am so much more equipped for a healthy lifestyle now than I was 30 days ago, it's almost mind blowing.
whole30 has changed me. and in the best way possible.
if you want any of these recipes, please just leave me a message! i'm off to run and then finish this program.