My Whole30

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There’s been a lot of buzz over the past year or so about the Whole30. For those of you who have not heard about it, here is what the website, www.whole30.com, has to say:

What is the Whole30?

“Established by Dallas Hartwig and Melissa Hartwig (of Whole9) in April 2009, the Whole30® is our original nutritional program designed to change your life in 30 days. Think of it as a short-term nutritional reset, designed to help you put an end to unhealthy cravings and habits, restore a healthy metabolism, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system.”
“So how do you know if (and how) these foods are affecting you? Strip them from your diet completely. Cut out all the psychologically unhealthy, hormone-unbalancing, gut-disrupting, inflammatory food groups for a full 30 days. Let your body heal and recover from whatever effects those foods may be causing. Push the “reset” button with your metabolism, systemic inflammation, and the downstream effects of the food choices you’ve been making. Learn once and for all how the foods you’ve been eating are actually affecting your day to day life, and your long term health.”
– See more at: http://whole30.com/step-one/#sthash.MgFgwuht.dpuf

Whole30 Benefits:

We cannot possibly put enough emphasis on this simple fact—the next 30 days will change your life. It will change the way you think about food, it will change your tastes, it will change your habits and your cravings. It could, quite possibly, change the emotional relationship you have with food, and with your body. It has the potential to change the way you eat for the rest of your life. We know this because we did it, and tens of thousands of people have done it since, and it changed our lives (and their lives) in a very permanent fashion.”

“The physical benefits of the Whole30 are profound. More than 95% of participants lose weight and improve their body composition, without counting or restricting calories. Also commonly reported: consistently high energy levels, improved athletic performance, better sleep, improved focus and mental clarity, and a sunnier disposition. (Yes, more than a few Whole30 graduates said they felt “strangely happy” during and after their program.”

“The psychological benefits of the Whole30 may be even more dramatic. Through the program, participants report effectively changing long-standing, unhealthy habits related to food, developing a healthier body image, and a dramatic reduction or elimination of cravings, particularly for sugar and carbohydrates.”
– See more at: http://whole30.com/step-one/#sthash.MgFgwuht.dpuf

My family did the W30 together back in October. It was more challenging for some than it was for others, but it was rewarding for all. For me, it wasn’t too difficult. The hardest part was planning ahead and remembering to pack a lunch or a dinner for long days when I wasn’t able to go home to eat. I didn’t experience the “Kill all the things” phase that many people experience. I did have a few days of inexplainable sadness (around days 10-12). Once I got past that, I was seriously happier. It was the weirdest thing to see firsthand how my food affected my emotions. By the end of the 45 days (yep, I kept going because there was no reason to stop), I was less puffy, I had more energy, I was happier, and I was more motivated and focused. The biggest thing was that I was no longer craving sugar. Huge breakthrough.

Well, throughout November and December and all the holidays that come with those months, sugary treats and bad decisions started creeping their way back into my diet. My thought process became, “Well, I already ate one bad thing, so I can eat whatever I want today. I’ll start over tomorrow.” NO. WRONG. BAD.

I had put so much hard work into changing my habits – and after 2 months, I have nothing to show for it. Regret is not fun, and beating myself up for these bad decisions is not healthy.

I have a pretty strong will and I’m super competitive. Two years ago I decided that I wasn’t going to eat sugar and I went 6 months with no sugar. All just to prove to myself that I could do it. So I’m drawing the line again and choosing now to make better decisions. I want 2016 to be my healthiest year yet. I owe it to myself to be the best version of me.

Here’s my plan:

  • I will be completing another Whole30 in January.
  • After the W30, I will be sticking as closely to it as possible with some paleo exceptions.
  • I am aiming to beat my “No Sugar Record” of 6 months and go the whole year. Yes, that means no treats on holidays, no exceptions for birthdays, and lots of learning to say “No thank you.”
  • I will be starting a 30 day yoga challenge (http://yogawithadriene.com) in January and will get back to running in February.

My goals with this second W30:

  • Improved sleep
  • Easier time waking earlier (NO SNOOZE)
  • More cooking
  • Better athletic performance
  • Healthier body image
  • No more sugar cravings
  • More energy
  • Weight loss

I’m a huge fan of the Whole30 and I recommend it to people all the time. I’ve seen what it can do, and I’m ready to jump back on train and work hard to be healthy again. Let’s do this 2016.

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