Monday, May 14, 2018

Whole 30 (April 2018)

As a librarian, I'm always intrigued by books that are consistently checked out.  This was the case of Whole30.  So, I decided that since I was in a slump to check it out to see if I could gain some tips about losing weight and feeling better while having more energy.

After reading more about the program, I made the decision after talking with a friend who had done this to start on April 1st.  For 30 days, I wouldn't consume the following:

  • No added sugar, real or artifical.
  • No alcohol in any form, not even cooking.
  • No grains (wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgar, sorghum, sprouted grains, etc).
  • No legume (beans of all kinds, peas, chickpeas, lentils and peanuts).  No peanut butter, soy, edamame.
  • No dairy.
  • Do not consumer carrageenan, msg or sulfites.
  • No recreating sweets, foods, etc.  
  • Do not weigh yourself.

Quite an extensive list of don'ts there!  Yes, you may be wondering what you do eat.  That was the hardest part for me.  I had to do extensive research into reading labels,  finding shopping lists and recipes that would work for me.

I was excited to start and planned out my first week meals. It is recommended that you practice good mealtime habits such as eat at the table, no distractions, chew slowly and enjoy your food.   The book was correct in the day by day breakdown of how you would feel, what to do and help with motivation tips. 
Day one was wonderful as I was excited to try this.  Day two and three I actually felt "hungover" from withdraw of sugar and other foods.  I never went through the "kill all the things" and "napping" phase.  I did have the hardest days from day seven through fourteen.  After day fifteen, I noticed that I was feeling better.  TIGER BLOOD was happening!  For those of you wondering where the phrase originally came from, it was Charlie Sheen, in an interview with Esquire Magazine. Of course, no one knew what he was talking about!   It basically means that you are more in control of food, cravings, energy and your body.

I noticed that I had no cravings, was feeling better and getting used to what I could eat verses what I couldn't eat.  The hardest part at this point was that I ran Raleigh Rock-N-Roll weekend on April 7-8th and I couldn't eat what I normally do to prepare for races.  Going out to eat with friends that weekend was extremely hard and I felt hungry.  However, I did notice that even though I hadn't been training well, I wasn't sore at all after running a 5k and half marathon!  What a discovery to realize that my body didn't have the inflammation that I normally have after a race weekend!  That was the first thing that I discovered was working well with Whole 30.  I also discovered that my energy levels were better along with my sleep and my snoring was under control if not gone!  Breakthroughs!!

The hardest day beyond that was Day 29 when I just wanted to be done with the program.  It was funny that the next day there was a late night pancake breakfast on campus and the girls brought me pancakes at 11:45 and said that I could eat them after midnight because it was May 1st and my Whole 30 program was done!  I didn't eat those pancakes but it was tempting!

I was actually surprised because I thought that I would want all the foods that I had to give up for thirty days however I really didn't want them.  I did notice a lot of changes that occurred after this program.  The book calls these non-scale victories and here's what I noticed:

  • My clothes fitting better.
  • Less bloating during the 30 days.
  • Feeling more confident in my body image.
  • Less chronic fatigue.
  • Less to little snoring.
  • Sleeping more soundly.
  • Improved moods.
  • Started to feel like moving and exercising more.
  • No more binge eating late at night on my job.
  • A healthier relationship with the food that I ate.
  • Fewer and then no cravings.
  • Trying new recipes.
  • More knowledgeable about nutrition and labels.
WOW!!!  I also lost 11.8 pounds and I feel great.  The biggest question that I get asked is will I stay on the program or go back to eating the way that I did before I started Whole30.  My answer is that I'm trying to stay as close to the program as I possibly can these day.  Why?  I learned so much over these 30 days in April about how the food that we eat affects our bodies and minds.  I learned that I'm in control more of how I can be healthy.  Is it hard?  Absolutely!  Do I want to eat all things some days?  Again, absolutely! Would I trade this for the way that I felt before Whole30? ABSOLUTELY NOT!!

I'm proud of my accomplishments and how I feel these days.  I feel great and whole again!  I'm still gaining back some of my confidence, running abilities but now have a newer perspective of how strong I am in my abilities to conquer things that I didn't think I would ever be able to do in my life.  

Till next time and remember my journey continues...If you can dream it, you can do it as Walt Disney said!

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