A few times a year I get an itch to really get my eating together. The idea of having more energy, better skin, better performance at the gym, being like the beautiful people on instagram & a stronger self is motivating. The Whole30 can be intimidating so I’ve got some tips, tricks and resources below I wanted to share.
I’ve done the Whole30 twice and stints of strict Paleo more regularly, and I’ll be honest, it’s not easy, but nothing that implements a true change ever is. Yes, once you get in the habit of doing something, it will get easier, and there is such a large community of people out there going through the same thing. What got me through was discussions about their real feelings and how on day 3, you already want to give up because you have a hangover without the benefits of drinking… and on day 14 the idea of MORE meat and veggies is unbelievably boring and the thought of prepping it is daunting…
BUT, despite the complaints I and others had, it does seem to be worth the effort if for nothing else, to make you more aware. I admit I could not sustain the Whole30 as a long-term diet, but tracking my food and holding myself accountable instilled this awareness in me that carried on long after my 30 days. For example, the implications of grain and gluten on my body and how my skin broke out the more I ate it, or, though seemingly healthy, eating multiple servings of fruit and hardly any veggies ups my sugar intake and doesn’t allow me to get all the vitamins I need for the day. So, now instead of having an apple on the side for lunch after I already ate a banana that morning, I’ll grab the apple AND put a kale salad in a tupperware or just replace with the salad- things like that.
So, if you’re considering the Whole30, I’d say, yes, do it- and I’m here to help. Prove to yourself that you can, but it will at times suck and the struggle is real. That being the case, turn to the community of Whole30ers. The internet is full of resources and support of people documenting the day-by-day, the suck, & recipes. Here are a few resources I used to help me through my 30 days. I also have a my food and exercise log below so you can see what I did on a daily basis. Use this as a template for your guide, and I would encourage you to get a buddy to do this along with you, and make it a shared Google document you each fill out everyday- accountability.
Tips & Tricks:
– Don’t get overexcited and pick out 30 complicated recipes. Prepping and cooking is hard enough, start your first week off keeping it simple. Here are some good examples:
HARD boiled eggs
SPAGHETTI squash with meatballs (check your sauce and balls…)
KALE salad with cherry tomatoes, avocado, choice nuts, grilled chicken with balsamic and olive oil, eggs- every which way, approved natural sausage
SHAKES (nutribullets work great): throw some kale, cantelope, berries, organic or homemade vanilla almond milk, almond butter, approved protien (be careful here) and chia seeds in there- its like dessert!
LUNCH meat wrapped around a pickle (easy snack)
– Support: Do this with a friend, your mom, spouse or create a challenge at your work or gym. Misery loves company
– Don’t give in, just don’t. Its so easy to cheat or stop, trust me, I cheated and the guilt wasn’t worth it. But, when you’re craving something, just fill yourself up on a healthy Whole30 snack and drink some naturally flavored water, you’ll be glad you did after the craving passes
– La Croix naturally flavored carbonated water or Soda Stream your tap. Life saver for me to sub out alcohol
– Well Fed, by Melissa Joulwan. Tons of recipes focused on Whole 30
– It Starts with Food & The Whole 30, by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig
– Julie Bauer’s Paleo Cook Book. Also has a great lifestyle blog, paleomg.com
Whole30 Log & Template: Below is a copy available to you of my log, and you can edit it and use it as your template. Now DISCLAIMER, I cheated on a few days that are on here. I wanted to be honest and vulnerable with my experience and here it is. Just because I cheated, doesn’t mean you should- I felt bad about it and regretted it afterward. Also, you’ll notice toward the end, I dropped off logging. I did continue until the end, but my friend I was doing it with and sharing the sheet with, dropped out halfway so I got lazy and stopped logging. Ok, judge away: