So, throughout the time we’ve been doing Whole30, I’ve had various thoughts about the program, how we’re feeling, tips and other little what-nots that I wasn’t sure how to fit into my regular semi-daily posts. So I figured I’d compile them in one spot. So here’s my twelve random thoughts, tips, feelings, about Whole30. Warning to family and friends, some of these thoughts are little “personal” so you may want to skip number seven 😉
- First, I wanna talk about how this has affected my nursing babe, Sweet Pea. She’s been about 3 months old this entire Whole30. Prior to Whole30, she was fairly gassy, cranky, and unhappy. She’d poop explosively, several times a day. While she had no problem gaining weight, she was obviously pretty miserable. Since starting Whole30, she’s night and day better. She’s more playful, calm, and happy. I’m happy to report that she now only poops once every day or two, and is only gassy and slightly cranky 30 minutes or so before she does her “doodie”. I also love starting off lists with a good chat about poop, don’t you?
- Second, the next few things I want to mention are the improvements I’ve felt since starting Whole30. I didn’t expect to have such clear skin! I used to get bad “pizza face” a couple times a month and it would take forever for those spots to go away completely! Now, I would almost feel confident enough to go without any make-up at all! This was a very expectant, yet welcome side-effect. (I like getting the gross stuff out of the way first, haha).
- I didn’t start this program to lose weight. As a matter of fact, I was slightly skeptical that not counting calories or watching portion sizes and rather eating very large meals would help me lose weight. But absolutely none of my pants stay up anymore…much to the husband’s enjoyment 😉 I’m not sure what I weighed before, and I have no idea what I weigh now, as I’m a tall girl and I had to learn early on to not let the number on a scale determine my self-worth or how I felt about how I looked. I do know that I am feeling more confident in my skin, and I always like a good excuse to buy new clothes!
- I’ve said it since week one, but I love how stable my blood-sugar is now. I used to experience roller coaster crashes all day long. I could go from super happy and in a great a mood to #killallthethings in a matter of minutes. Now it’s much more gradual, and I find that when I do start getting hungry I just have a hard time concentrating and my stomach actually rumbles again.
- I can now go to sleep much more quickly, and wake up feeling a lot more rested. I have very vivid dreams now too. Almost as vivid as when I was pregnant! The first couple of weeks you dream a lot about food. You dream of bathing in chocolate or cheating on your spouse with pizza and all other sorts of ridiculousness involving food. Eventually the crazy food dreams subside, and you just end up with just normal crazy dreams.
- I don’t feel like I have a ridiculous amount of energy yet, it could be because I still wake up a few times a night with a nursing baby, but I definitely feel more energized than I was prior Whole30. I feel a little bit of tiger blood flowing now that we’re nearing the end, in the ‘I feel I could conquer anything but don’t feel the energy to do so’ kind of way, but I’m sure that’ll come with time. Here’s a great post about what “tiger blood” is all about. I’m just feeling completely content to just “be”, which is something I haven’t felt in a long time.
- ***If you’re family, you may want to avoid reading the following..haha*** I didn’t expect doing this Whole30 thing with my husband would have such a positive effect on our marriage, both in and out of the bedroom. Hubby might not have known, but my “desire” levels were nil prior to Whole30. I can tell a huge improvement in the romance department…even if we don’t get to act on it these days. On a non-brown-chicken-brown-cow note, we’re talking to each other more and are bonding over something of mutual interest. I couldn’t imagine doing this without him by my side!
- Outside of how I’m feeling, here’s some tips. Before getting started, I would recommend picking a handful of paleo/Whole 30 recipes and giving them a try beforehand. It’ll give you a feel for how things will be and you’ll realize just how delicious it is eating this way. Plus, it helps take away the scary, unknown factor.
- I do wonder how families with two working parents would accomplish eating this way. It’s pretty time consuming, particularly in the beginning there’s a steep learning curve, but once you get over that it’s really fairly easy. I would think, you’d have to do a lot more food prep on the weekends/nights than if you didn’t have one parent at home.
- It hasn’t been easy eating this way, and getting our kids to eat too. So I’ve tried to read through my recipes ahead of time and see how I could easily adapt the meal to make it edible for my kids. I’m totally against fixing them something separate from our own meals but I’ll still try to fix it in a way that they’ll eat it. For instance, I made this Sweet Potato Turkey Chili the other day, and after browning the meat and before adding the vegetables, I just took a half cup of turkey out and added a little salt and cumin and put it on tortillas with cheese for them. They scarfed it down and the hubby and I still got our delicious chili!
- You’ll learn really quick to always be thinking ahead. For instance, if you need two boiled eggs for lunch one day, why don’t go ahead and boil six? Two for now and four for later. It takes just as much time to cook six as it does two! Same thing with ingredients such a spaghetti squash, sweet potatoes, or baked chicken. These things keep well in the fridge and take no extra time to make more for later. Work smarter, not harder!
- One of the most difficult things I struggled with was breakfast time. The best advice I got from someone is to call it “Meal One”. While I still call it breakfast, I now think of it as “Meal One”. It makes it easier for me to stomach the idea of savory and previously more dinner type foods to eat first thing in the morning. I now love eating the previously mentioned Turkey Chili for breakfast or salmon patties. Trust me, cause you’ll get sick of eggs really quickly otherwise!
- Ok, one bonus thought… but if you’re doubting if you can do this too, you totally can. It’s about putting mind over matter. Quit treating food as your security blanket. It’s really, really tough the first half but now that we’re in the home stretch I really can’t think of eating any other way. Sure I do miss pancakes, pizza, and wine but not as much as I’m enjoying feeling good and feeling good about myself. I was one to previously buy little debbie snacks, hide them, and then eat them all (sometimes in one sitting!). It was disgusting, I know. But it made me feel good, until I crashed 30 minutes later. I never, ever want to go back to doing that and I won’t. I’m done with it! It’s time to find other things that help me feel good, besides food. Like reading a good book, taking a walk, or being sociable again. Will I eat another slice of pizza or a cheeseburger with actual buns again? Duh, this is real life! But I’m not going to let that become my
weeklydaily normevery again.
I hope you found this little list inspiring or helpful. If anything, it helped me get some thoughts off my chest.
Much love y’all,