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My Whole 30 Experience

We have a dear friend who does Whole30 every January. She stays committed and has pretty decent success. This January, she roped her husband into doing it with her and he lost twenty pounds. They posted on Facebook about his success and immediately, MY husband said, “let’s do it.”

As the words left his lips, my head spun, quite possibly, ten times around my neck. I said, “Are you sure? There are a lot of foods you LOVE that you can’t have. We won’t be able to drink.”

I repeated the statements above probably twenty more times trying to convince him this was a bad idea. I became a little savvy and even delayed the start by saying to my husband, “Your birthday is in a couple weeks and birthday cake is NOT on Whole30…at all, are you sure you want to do it?” He’s wise to my games and said we would begin the week after his birthday…cue sad heartbreaking music and imaginary tears rolling down my face.

As we prepared to begin, all I could think was what a crock this diet is because we already eat relatively healthy and balanced. So I bought the cookbook. I wanted to stay committed and ensure we were following the rules, so what better way to follow the rules than to have them laid out for you in recipes and measurements. BAD IDEA FOR SOMEONE WHO COOKS PROFESSIONALLY!

I meal prepped all of our breakfasts, lunches and dinners for the first week thinking this will be great. There aren’t any excuses of why this can’t work, except the 16 boxes of assorted Girl Scout Cookies taunting me because they are unopened.

We had success in the first week, kind of. We were mildly hungry throughout the first day but were able to add fruit and Lara Bars to help stave off the symptoms of being hangry. Day two was problematic. The hunger pangs were like none I’ve ever had. I was weak and a little disoriented. Not a fun time by anyone. Day three, I hit a wall. I woke up nauseous…my body was in full detox. I couldn’t eat or focus. I was irritable and I just wanted it to end. For me, that was the day the severity of the rules ceased to exist. I almost fell asleep/passed out at the wheel of my car and rear ended someone.

I changed the plan because that isn’t a way to live. I added an english muffin for breakfast and it made all the difference in the world. I also found my self disregarding the cookbook. The food I made the first week was good, but it wasn’t great. I cook for a living, I love eating great food. There was an Ahh Haa moment when I said to myself, “Girl, you are a chef, make it taste good.” I’d been so intent on following the rules, my professional rules went out the window.

I found everything in the book to be under seasoned and bland. I first thought it was my taste buds changing, but as the diet went on and I used my professional know how combined with the book for ideas, Whole30 became far more manageable.

We have decided to use Whole30 as a guide for lunches dinners Monday-Friday, but if we want a glass of wine, we are having it. If we want a couple (not an entire sleeve) of thin mints, we are going to have them. As with any diet, MODERATION IS KEY!

In conclusion, here is a list of super positive things I took away from the diet because we did lose weight and feel better.

1. READ YOUR LABELS (these days, everything has sugar in it)
2. When reading recipes, season until you think it tastes good
4. If I never eat another Lara Bar, it will be too soon
5. Balance is key, meaning: one glass of wine rather than the bottle
6. LIVE YOUR LIFE
7. If you can’t make it taste good, hire someone who can

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