Hey lovely friends!
Happy Monday. I am proud to report that I have survived my first eight days of the Whole30. If you’re new to this news, here’s a rundown of the Whole30 and why I decided to do it. My goal is to give an open and honest recap of recipes, how I felt, and other tips and tricks that you might find helpful.
The Food: As I mentioned in my first post, planning is EVERYTHING! I actually planned a few too many recipes the first week—I had a lot of leftovers and ended up omitting recipes or pushing them back. With that said, here’s what I tried and what I thought about it!
Sweet Potato Bacon and Kale Hash. This was my very first recipe and WOW did it give me confidence that I could do this whole thing. Super savory, filling, and flavorful. 10/10 would recommend.Turkey and Kale Soup. Another big winner. This soup taught me that you cannot underestimate the power of seasonings. This soup was perfect for winter and made a ton! I’ve got an entire container in the freezer for lunch at a later date. Making homemade stock took a little time, but it was definitely worth it!Chia and Banana Pudding. I love adding chia to things (oatmeal and smoothies especially) so I was intrigued to try one of these super-popular recipes that involves adding chia seeds to almond milk and soaking the whole thing overnight. I will admit, this was not one of my favorites—it was a little too cold and gelatinous for me! Still, I made my own almond milk which was an accomplishment in itself.Creamy Pumpkin Zoodles. I had a lot of plans for these zoodles—however, I couldn’t get the sauce quite right (probably because I used canned pumpkin instead of following the instructions…) I added up ending curry, which gave it a cool flavor, but it ended up being a little sweet for my tastes. Other than those recipes, I actually ended up eating a lot of really simple stuff—some chicken and veggies on a salad, a breakfast of bacon, eggs, and a sliced banana, etc. For all the rules the Whole30 has, it was nice knowing that I could reach for any fruit and veggie without second thought. Having some hard boiled eggs and grilled chicken in the fridge made things pretty easy, too.
The ~Feels~: I had a headache that came and went the first few days—not sure if that was because of the lack of sugar, or my body readjusting, or what. I started working out again this week, and found that I tended to get a little dizzier easier (I usually have a workout drink, but it had sugar so I had to ditch it for water). Other than that, I didn’t notice any other “detox” symptoms. As for additional energy and clarity, I felt pretty normal, since I usually eat pretty healthy. I’ll give it a few more days to see what happens.
I’ll be honest—it was REALLY hard having to pick up everything I intended on putting in my mouth and asking myself “Is this grain/sugar/soy/dairy free?” Picking up any packaged food usually ended in disappointment, so I found myself naturally inclined to reach for things without labels, which is a good thing, I guess! Still, seeing my family eat out or my gym offering FREE PIZZA THE FIRST DAY I WAS BACK tested my willpower. I’ve had dreams about cheating and woken up in terror, but I haven’t fallen off the wagon…yet.
The Tips: First of all, plan plan plan! You need to mentally know that you’re having some delicious Whole30 food throughout the day when you drive past Wendy’s or your mom brings home cupcakes. It’s not about deprivation, it’s about alternatives. Always give yourself an alternative that you are going to enjoy and feel good about.
Also, listen to your body. The Whole30 encourages you to stick to three square meals, but I’ve been working on the 3 meal/2 snack system for a while now, so there were times that I was genuinely hungry. You can (and should!) eat. I had a few containers of cut up fruits and veggies for this specific purpose. You do your body no good when you fight against its natural needs.
Final tip—drink a lot of water! I upped my intake with hot teas, lemon water, etc. It really helps to clean everything out and help you make the most of these 30 days of intentional eating.
As always, be sure to check my Facebook page for daily updates on my Whole30 adventure!
Be well and be blessed,