Thursday, March 6, 2014

t3 - getting through the first week of whole30

Let me start out by saying that I never imagined how hard this Whole30 program would be. I like meat. I like veggies. I like fruit… I just like them combined with some kind of bread, pasta, cheese or sugar.

According to the Whole30 timeline, you’re feeling pretty good about yourself by the end of Day #1. Not me. On top of a stressful Monday, my body was literally begging me to fix my chocolate craving by 2 p.m. That’s right, I can’t even go one day without wanting chocolate. I was miserable.

Needless to say, I’m as surprised as you are that it’s day 11 and I’m still going strong. Here are three things that got me through AND three things that I’ve learned so far.

Thing 1 – Applesauce & Raspberries {with a hint of cinnamon}
A shout out to Beth for even making me think of such an option. Raspberries are by far my favorite fruit, so couple with a small bowl of cold, chunky applesauce and it’s probably the most satisfying treat I’ve had since I started. Maybe it’s my sugar-starved brain talking, but why exactly do they add sugar to applesauce in the first place? It’s sweet enough as is!

Thing 2 – Roasted Chicken
I put this baby in the crockpot Saturday night and it’s been slowly feeding me all week. With this one chicken I’ve made no-mayo chicken salad, chicken & mushroom omelets, garden salad with chicken, chicken soup. In a program where you’re ALWAYS preparing meals, it’s nice to have some ready-to-go options.

Thing 3 – Water
Yeah, weird, right? I didn’t realize it would take the Whole30 to finally get me drinking more water. But I can’t have mints or gum, so water is the best option when you want to dilute your bad garlic breath after lunch. And, it’s also the best option when you don’t like what you’re eating for lunch but have no other choice so you force it down with a gulp of water between every bite. I honestly woke up twice last night because I had to go to the bathroom – that’s how much water I’m drinking.

So what words of wisdom have I learned after only 11 days? Well, let me tell you…

Thing 1 – Don’t do too much too soon
The first week I wanted to do so much. I prepped for two hours on Sunday so I would be ready for all the new recipes throughout the week. The thing with new recipes is that they never turn out quite as good as you think they will, and this was no exception. Instead, I should have focused on several things that I normally cook that are Whole30 approved and slowly added in new dishes and flavors.  

Thing 2 – Do what you can when you can
I was trying to strictly follow the Whole30 guidelines with a palm-size meat and two cups of veggies at every meal. But, I quickly realized: I can’t eat that many veggies in one sitting. I also was trying to eat as little fruit as possible in the morning, but I quickly realized: fruit is the easiest option in the morning. Instead of forcing yourself into the perfect Whole30 mold, follow the guidelines the best way you can. Otherwise, you may burn out.

Thing 3 – Meal plan as much as possible
Almost every meal needs prepping with few exceptions, so if you don’t plan ahead, it will be dinnertime with no options and you’ll just want to quit. Thankfully, my all-time backup meal {salmon & sweet potato} is Whole30-approved for those crazy nights, but other than that I have to know what we’re going to eat every day, every meal – or we might just not eat.

Would you ever try Whole30? Why or why not?


  1. i'm 100% with you on not doing too much too soon - that's the #1 way to quit too soon - you get so overwhelmed and you want nothing to do with it. in my opinion, change takes time and the best way is to do everything in baby steps.

    -kathy | Vodka and Soda

  2. i am with you on eating so many veggies in one sitting - i can't do it!! and fruit is my go to breakfast with some of those turkey sausages. but sometimes i just ate the fruit! the fact is - you're still eating healthy even if it doesn't look exactly like the mold or meal guideline they give you! meal planning was a pain at first but it saves so much frustration! :) and we definitely ate salmon a lot!

    you are doing so great & i'm gonna have to try that applesauce/raspberry thing!! brilliant!

  3. This is really good advice! I really want to try this soon. Thanks for sharing your words of wisdom!

  4. Ooo... applesauce and raspberries sounds good!

  5. Definitely! This week I've tried simpler recipes - paleo versions of bbq chicken, beef stew & chicken curry, and I've had great results! - The husband even liked them!

  6. I thought I would be used to the meal planning (I did it before) but then, I felt like it was more flexible. If I didn't feel like cooking, we could eat popcorn or go out. That's not really an option with Whole30, which is a good thing, but also a stressful thing - especially now that Daniel has joined me and I have to plan for two people (one of which is incapable of cooking anything)!

    I just ate a little bowl of applesauce with blackberries* and it hit the spot. :)

  7. I'm on Day 11, so I really can't endorse it yet, but check in with me in a week and I should be having fabulous results to convince you that it's worth it!

  8. It's the perfect amount of sweet.... when you haven't had chocolate in 11 days (who am I???)

  9. That apple sauce sounds so good!! I would definitely miss sugar too, I'm convinced. That's pretty much what holds me back from doing these kinds of things! Maybe someday ;-)

  10. Kudos to you for sticking with this! You definitely make me want to consider trying this.

  11. You can totally do it! Once you get through the first week, the cravings start to go away.

  12. I've had a rocky 2nd week (caught the sickness that was going around the office), but other than that I've felt GREAT! 12 days without a single "I feel fat" day has got to be a record or something. Next week I'm supposed to have boundless energy, though, so I'm ready for that!