Whole30: Why, What, How, & RESULTS!
WHY? This is a major question people ask. WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS TO YOURSELF?! Seems to be the common theme. Well, here's why:
1. Hormones. Before I became pregnant with Frankie, we were advised that I should do an elimination diet. Certain foods can trigger certain hormones and not allow certain natural things to happen. We were testing out fine as far as fertility goes, so, I figured, what do we have to lose?! I started by cutting out gluten and within a couple of months, we were expecting :) SO, I pretty much am aware that my hormones ARE in fact affected by foods. After giving birth, it's totally normal to be all jacked up when it comes to hormones, but I wanted to give myself a shot at stabilizing ASAP. There was enough other "things" to deal with, I didn't want hormones to be another one. Four months after having her, I also was still producing milk. I figured this might be able to help that, as well.
2. I was stuck at the same weight I was when I came home from the hospital. The scale wasn't budging. As much as I don't really concern myself with weight too much, 20 extra pounds on my 5'1" frame is a lot. I was in pain when I was working out and in pain when I was teaching. It was time to make some nutritional changes that were drastic in hopes that the scale would move.
3. Mental/Spiritual Awareness. Anxiety is a new thing I'm dealing with. I've never been one that was so anxious that it was debilitating. But, here we are. I had started seeing a therapist and doing EMDR therapy for trauma, but I also know certain food only HEIGHTENS things like anxiety and depression, so, it was a no brainer on this front. Cut out all the crap, go to therapy, work out, and pray. Literally. All day everyday, that became the routine. I also began to like the pain of hunger. I was feeling some sort of emptiness, sadness, grief... and the physical pain of hunger would often times distract me from that, so I just wouldn't eat. And then I would be starving, so I would binge. I am glad and grateful I caught on to this early before it spiraled, but, committing to the Whole30 was crucial to ending that bad relationship with food and emotions. I also NEVER drink pop (soda), but because I was always hungry and then I would binge, Ginger Ale became a staple in my meal plan. (or lack of meal plan).
4. I needed a plan with a lot of structure. Something that can be seen as "hard" is good for me. I like hard things these days because I have a different perspective of what hard actually is and I've become really fond of proving myself wrong.
So, now on to the WHAT and the HOW:
Honestly, I read the book. I read it front to back. I used the recipes, the guidelines, and when I wasn't sure, I used google. I followed the program by eating 3 meals a day and often times, an extra snack which was always an apple and almond butter. I did continue to drink Shakeology for quite a few reasons and I received some HATE from Whole30 die hards, but I truly don't care. I drink Shakeology every single day because it is an all natural, mindless meal that contains TONS OF SUPERFOODS THAT FILL NUTRITIONAL GAPS FOR ME. It also only costs $4/meal, so it truly is a no brainer for someone who is always on the go and ... always late, haha. I prepped A LOT. My kitchen was always a disaster (and still is because the food I make at home is just way better now!) But, I'd rather have a messy kitchen than messy insides!
This was a typical daily meal schedule:
Eggs (hard boiled or scrambled)
Roasted Veggies (peppers, onions, brussel sprouts)
Chocolate Vegan Shakeology
Coconut/Almond milk blend (it's tricky to find approved Almond/Coconut milk-- read your labels!)
One of the recipes from the book! My favorites were:
Wings w/ Ranch
Walnut Crusted Pork Tenderloin
Chicken Meatballs & Spaghetti Squash
Cilantro Lime Steak Salad
Apple & Almond butter (I usually ate this before dinner if I needed it!)
and now.... THE RESULTS!
1. Hormones have totally calmed down! My face is super clear, everything is "regular" and milk has totally dried up. WIN!
2. I lost 11lbs!!!!! I started at 134 and finished at 123. HUGE WIN FOR ME!
3. My eating is totally back on track. Not only am I eating a lot, but I am enjoying it again. In addition to therapy, EMDR, and the mental clarity the Whole30 has brought about, I have come to realize that the "emptiness" I feel is just a whole that will always exist with in me. It belongs to Frankie. And that is Ok! It's up to me to continue on, despite the whole.
Now comes the reintroduction phase! I will slowly start to add in the foods we previously cut out: grains, soy, dairy, sugar, corn, etc.... HOWEVER, the only foods I really want to add back in are rice, quinoa, and hummus, haha. AND WINE. I would like the wine back, too.
I do not have any intentions of going back to dairy regularly. Maybe occasionally on a "treat day" but I feel that Whole30 is primarily going to be how I eat now.
I have never felt so HEALTHY in my life. It took 30 days, but it was INSANELY WORHT IT and I would recommend this program to ANYONE who can deal with a little bit of "hard" and realize that making proper food choices is not actually hard.
Redefine hard for yourself and you will be amazed at what you can do.
Would you be interested in joining a FREE WHOLE 30 ACCOUNTABILITY GROUP if I ran one?
Please fill out the form below and I will be in touch!