Whole30 is Here to Stay

finished-whole30Day 38, we finally got back home to where our scale is.  First time on in 38 days, I knew my clothes fit better, my skinny jeans with lycra in them didn’t have quite as far to stretch around my belly and hips and my sleeves were getting longer, something I’ve never experienced before.  I felt a bit like the dinosaur with “little, bitty arms”.  The revelation was 9 pounds down.

Rich followed me on the scales, his reveal was 20.1 pounds. ( I hate my husband sometimes.)  So combined, almost 30 pounds in 38 days.  There is something to celebrate.  But there was more, we didn’t do this as a weight loss thing, although that definitely had some appeal, neither of us are at a healthy weight.  Our goal was to see what we could do to feel better…ask yourself, how do you feel when you get out of bed in the morning?  Are you stiff? sore? Do your joints ache?  Yeah, us too – that was the part we didn’t like.

A year ago I went on blood pressure meds, they helped enough to get rid of the headaches, but not really enough to put my blood pressure in a healthy, accepted range. Something had to change.

We had a little setback, a couple of days before we got home again, we ran out of vitamin C, something we take pretty faithfully in the winter months.  I stopped at the local drugstore and picked up the C and some Fish Oil.  I had read in the It Starts With Food book that fish oil was a good addition.  We started taking it and three days later, Rich could barely move.  He couldn’t walk very far, he had severe joint pain.  We talked about what we had changed and realized it was only the different vitamins.  Back at the hotel that afternoon we looked at those bottles.  The first ingredient is the Fish Oil was Soy, the Vitamin C had all kinds of binders in it.  Both bottles went in the garbage and I went and bought new.  Within two days, he was back to feeling good.  Who knew you had to read the ingredients on supplements as well, I won’t make that mistake again.

We have added back one little treat, but that is all…we are back at the coffee shop just a couple of days a week for Vanilla Lattes…this time made with Almond Milk, still no dairy in our world.  The vanilla flavoring with its’ sugar is our one vice.

I’m beginning the Whole 30 fresh again, the scale has been put away – no peeking for 30 days, and I’m focused on two things I’ve not been focused on before ( now that I have the food part down).  This next 30 are going to include portion control and the mid-day meal.  I couldn’t do it all before, this is the next challenge.

To re-cap – 38 days = 30 pounds; no joint pain, lower blood pressure – all while eating good, clean healthy foods.  Why not?  You only get one body, why not treat it right!

Whole30 – One day left

foodTwenty-nine days in, we have just one day left in our Whole30 program.  Not once have we cheated, either one of us!  I’m really kind of proud of that.  My husband’s addiction to Monster Java Mean Beans is kicked, my craving for carbs has scaled way back.  I really think this is a way that we could continue to eat.

Over the last 29 days, I have dreamed of food more often than ever before, I think in my whole life.  One night, I ate three sandwiches in my dream.  I don’t even remember what was on the sandwich, I just remember slathering it with mayonnaise and two pieces of white bread.  I haven’t eaten plain white bread in years, but that night, that’s what I was eating.  It seemed so real.

Last week, my dream had me having a vodka/sprite…I was half way through it before I remembered I wasn’t supposed to have any alcohol and I went and poured it out.  It is weird to dream like that.  In real life, no sandwiches and no alcohol were consumed.

One of my favorite parts has been the recipes that I have found and fixed.  Pinterest is a God-Send for Whole30.  So many recipes, most need tweaked just a little, but they have been delicious.  I have yet to have a bad meal that I’ve fixed myself.  Some of the restaurant meals have been a challenge, but that’s the choices we’ve made.  Some of the restaurants just don’t get it.

So let’s talk great food…last night it was Herb and Citrus Roasted Chicken from The Comfort of Cooking – so good…I left out the sugar, used mandarin oranges and added sliced zucchini and yellow squash to the dish.  It was great, used the leftover chicken in the eggs this morning.

Last week it was Dairy free Seafood Chowder from Meatified, again, so good.  I added roasted salt pork, fresh clams and shrimp…put everything but the seafood and the coconut milk in the crockpot while we ran off to yoga.  I cooked the clams separately and added the other ingredients to the pot while I finished the clams.  Even my father-in-law, who loves clam chowder loved it.   For more meatiness, add canned clams as well.

My fallback meal is pork tacos.  Pulled pork is super easy, just add a pork roast to a crock pot, a can of green chiles, one of no-salt-added diced tomatoes and sprinkle heavily with cumin.  Done.  To make Whole30 compliant tacos, we dropped the taco shells and used cabbage leaves instead, dropped the cheese and crema.  A little Pico de gallo, green onions, and fresh tomatoes, Delicious!

We still don’t know what or how we are adding back foods, I think it will be subtle, I think it will be meal dependent.  I think it will be based on a restaurant we are in.  The next few days should be interesting…still on the fence about Whole30?  The food is easy, follow my Pinterest page for ideas.

Day 15 Whole 30

Whole30_NOThe last two weeks have been interesting.  They haven’t been hard, we have just had to explain our food choices a number of times.  Like when you meet friends for a beer and order water and coffee instead.  Or when Thanksgiving dinner arrives on the table and you stick to salad and turkey and the hot vegetables, instead of the mashed potatoes and the delicious rolls you helped bake.

Ordering at a restaurant is interesting, I generally start with “if it tastes great, leave it off” – that gets a laugh and then they listen to what you actually want to eat.  I had a chef come out to see what I was really looking for in my butter choice for my lobster.

But then after you’ve ordered, most want to know why.  So we explain that we are on a limited food plan right now, and here is why.  The aches and pains we normally see are gone, getting up in the morning is easier, we are dropping pounds, my skin is perfect, our digestive systems are working like a champ, my blood pressure is getting back to the normal range, in general, we feel good.

There have been moments when I want something simpler.  I want to just make a sandwich or eat a bowl of cereal.  It’s not that I want those foods, necessarily, I just want meal prep to be easy.  But I also know that we are eating clean.  There are no chemicals in foods that need to be chopped.

In the morning I prep breakfast and lunch together.  A fruit bowl first with fresh raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, banana, pineapple, grapes and melons.  Then the mushrooms, onions, spinach that will end up in the eggs.  It’s easy to chop extra for the salad that we will have for lunch and just get that out of the way.  And if you haven’t found Larabars yet…check in to those.  Not all flavors are made without sugar, but those that are, are delicious.

In the afternoon, I Pinterest “Whole30” and my meat choice, you have to actually read the recipes to get those that truly fit, but I have found some good ones.  The Chipotle Chicken Soup and the Savory Sweet Potatoes are two of my favorite.  Minor adjustments made to each to keep the Whole30, but worth it.

So downsides…we talk about poop a lot.  Although, I think we talked about poop a lot before, just in a negative way.  Now we practically high five leaving the bathroom.  If you are an adult male, this probably means more to you than most of my readers, I know it means a lot to my husband.

Downside number two….I’m ready to be skinny, I mean, geez, I have walked 23.86 miles, gone to two yoga classes and eaten appropriately for 14 days.  I should be skinny by now, right? Nevermind that I’ve eaten inappropriately for in excess of 11,000 days, fourteen ought to fix it.  This is why they don’t let you step on the scales during the whole 30.  Makes sense.

Whole30…the beginning

Baja, one of my doing-the-w30-IGfavorite places, Rich and I ran down for a few days.  The trip didn’t go as planned, but that’s ok, as long as we are together it is an adventure and that is good enough for me.  I find my favorite place to be is where he is.

On the way down, we read a book together, or rather, I read it, he listened.  Most places I paraphrased.  It Starts With Food is the book we shared, it is all about eating real.good.food.  If you know us, you know we love good food.  Rich has done a great job of choosing good food, me, not so much.  I don’t hesitate when someone offers me a cookie, or two.

So as we travelled, we made lists of what we could and couldn’t eat if we were following the Whole30 program.  Baja is a challenge, everything has queso, or tortillas, or both.  We love eating in Baja.  We stop at Adriana’s for shrimp tacos and shrimp quesadillas.  We go to George’s for chiliquilles, we find our favorite sandwich shop on the back streets of Ensenada for a Para Mi torta.  Don’t even get me started on the bakery just down from the Santa Isabel hotel, I can fill whole bags with treat after carb-loaded treat.

Toward the end of our trip, we decided it was time to start.  It was a Wednesday, the 19th.  As good a day as any to begin our Whole30 program.  We are doing this together, so it should be easier to stay on track.

First meal was breakfast, we dropped over to an upscale restaurant we have eaten at before.  They delivered cookies the minute we sat down.  We stared at them, but never touched.  Next option was a pork rind soup or cheese quesadilla.  We opted for the soup, it was filled with vegetables and protein, ok, maybe fat, but…most importantly, not dairy, not carbs.  We added an omelette and ignored the tortillas on the table, no hashbrowns, no beans.  We did good.

By the time we rolled around to lunch, we were back in the states.  We stopped at Chipotle and got salads, mine with chicken, his with steak.  Not very satisfying, but we were still on plan.  Then came dinner.  I knew exactly where I wanted to go.  Fish 101 in Encinitas.  We have always had good, fresh food there.  I had Opa, he had Yellow-tail, we both added a salad and the fried Brussel sprouts.  Oh my gosh, so good.  High five for us, we made it through Day One!

Day Two arrived and we found a local place and had another omelette, a fruit plate we shared, some sliced tomatoes.  By the time we got on the road, my head hurt.  This was the hangover they talk about.  I made him stop at Inn-n-Out for an ice tea, I figured all those years of Diet Coke were catching up to me, I had caffeine withdrawals.

We hit another local restaurant for lunch, I had a massive plate of roast beef and a salad.  My head still hurt, but the food was plentiful and tasty, so that was a plus.  We had plenty of roast beef for dinner too, I just needed to figure out how to fix it.  I took a nap when we got back and woke feeling better.  No more headache at least.  Rich had gone to the grocery store, so I could fix dinner.

That’s when I lost it.  They give you a Timeline on the Whole30 program that says about when you will want to kill your mate.  I got there early.  At the grocery store, he had not only gotten veggies for dinner, onions and mushrooms and the like.  He had gotten celery and carrots.  I was pissed.  Celery and Carrots are diet food.  We are NOT on a frickin’ diet!  I hadn’t realized that I had such a hangup about celery and carrots, this would be one of those emotional relationships we have with food that needs to be broken. I stomped around the house, ignored him and just generally stayed PO’d until I had eaten, then I told him what he did wrong.  Maybe I even worded it rather strongly, because he totally got the picture.

Tomorrow is Day 3, it will be fine, we are travelling all day again, but at least I have the prospect of being able to go shop and fix something that we can both enjoy.  I am excited about the change in what we are eating.  I think it will be good for us, with how my body and mind are reacting already, it is obvious I needed a change.  Why not join us for the Whole30?