Why Do a Whole30?

The most common question I have gotten about this Whole30 adventure is why am I doing it? Honestly, when I found out I would have to revert back to eating meat I almost didn’t. And yes, I know I can do this a vegetarian, and possibly a vegan, but it seemed to overwhelming. At least I could grasp what this might look like with meat.

But back to the question: why do this to myself? Here are my primary reasons:

1. Whole30 focuses on cutting out sugar. I am a massive sugar junkie. Cutting out sugar is a good experience for me (or a horribly-fabulous experience to quote a term from a Yoga SugarBuddy).

2. Cutting out the carbs. I also eat a lot of carbs. So, again, it’s about scaling back.

3. 30 days with no soda. I can actually do this with no problem. However, I still drink them here and there. It’ll be good for me.

4. A chance to break my normal eating habits and evaluate them. We all get into a routine. Routines are both good and bad. This Whole30 breaks my food patterns and provides me the opportunity to reevaluate what I eat and why (and how I feel when I do/do not eat certain foods).

Will this help me with my practice? That has yet to be seen. I hope to have a handle on this question in a couple of weeks.

Whole30: The First Two Days

The night before my decent into the Whole30, I joked that I was going to drink a 2-liter bottle of coke and have an entire chocolate cake for dinner. Honestly, that seemed like a reasonable idea to me. I didn’t of course. I was too lazy to drive to the store. I really shoulda done it.

Chocolate cake brings only happiness.

Chocolate cake brings only happiness.

Day 1

I got up at 7:00 on a Saturday so I would have time to make breakfast before I took the 9:00 class. I decided to take the ground pork and turn it into sausage patties. It made a lot more than what I thought it would so I’m off to a good start. I’ll have plenty of leftovers for the week. I also fried up two eggs.

The verdict? Didn’t care. I really don’t miss eating meat. I wasn’t that excited about my sausage patties. Now granted I haven’t cooked meat in about two years. I am sure it could use some tweaking, but I am not excited. Eggs were whatever. Did I really used to enjoy eating fried eggs? I already miss vegan eating.

Before heading off to class I read up on what I believe I am making for lunch. I see the recipe calls for ground chicken but I have actually bought whole chicken breasts. I’m sure I can work around it. So I’m eating chicken and kale for lunch? I’m bored already. When did this ever sound like a good idea?

Enough of this. Let’s go to class.

You Call This a Class?

Class was not great. Mostly I daydreamed about eating a candy bar and drinking a soda. I know I’m supposed to try to be in the moment, but I’ll take a second here and compliment myself on at least being aware of how much eating a candy bar and drinking a soda dominated my thoughts. I was also hyper aware of all the meals I had yet to make that day and how much I was not looking forward to any of it. I have become obsessed with food.

Day 1: Lunch

Back at home, I realize I have purchased two bags of completely frozen, uncooked chicken breasts. It was buy one get one free. There are 10 in each bag. It dawns on me that I have 20 chicken breasts. I will be eating chicken at least once a day for most of this challenge. It will also take 40 minutes to cook the breast (so say the directions).

I bought at least this much chicken.

I bought at least this much chicken.

Eating a straight up chicken breast sounds, well, boring. I have also given up on the original recipe I had planned. But I have a lot of kale hanging around and need to do something with that. I find a recipe for pan-fried kale that looks good. I decide to dump some salsa on my chicken. That worked, but then I realized I would be eating salsa again at dinner. There’s a lot of salsa eating going on around here.

Lunch = meh.

Day 1: Dinner

I thoroughly enjoyed dinner on Day 1. It was a fabulous taco salad. I ate it sooo fast I didn’t even get a picture of it! It was filling. I went to bed tired (probably from all this cooking!) but feeling fine.

Foods I Dreamed About Today: Chocolate

Enter Day 2

Day 2 didn’t get off to the best start. I made some sausage and eggs and thought if I had to eat eggs one more day I would literally vomit. Breakfast was a struggle. I stopped off at the store and, with some assistance from a friend, acquired even more food. When I got home I had an assortment of items for lunch – but really, do you see what has happened to me already on Day 2?

I have become totally obsessed with food.

All I do is think about what I’m eating next. All I want to do is dream about what I cannot eat. I crashed after lunch, woke up hungry, and wanted a pop-tart (I never eat pop-tarts). I made due with a chicken breast. I felt miserable and decided to skip class. It was a nice day so I indulged in a walk. I really think this was the best idea. Usually I’m not down for skipping class just because you don’t want to go, but today I just felt so horrible I couldn’t even envision myself in the room. Getting some fresh air and sunshine improved my mood.

Foods I Dreamed About Today:

Why am I craving this?

Why am I craving this?

1. Toasted bagel with cream cheese

2. Hot chocolate

3. Pop-tarts

Whole30 Kick-Off: What to Eat?

My decent into the Whole30 has begun. It began Thursday with a trip to the grocery store that took forever. Actually, it began at home where I spent nearly an hour trying to figure out what I would eat besides scrambled eggs and random pieces of meat. I had found so many sites with so many helpful recipe ideas that I truly felt overwhelmed. My brain got stuck.

Ever happen to you?

I know it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. Suddenly, everything I’m used to eating all day long has to go. Where to start? I started with breakfast.

I managed to locate a site with 30 Whole30 breakfast recipes. From there, I zeroed in on breakfast sausage. I figured I could make a lot of these in advance over the weekend and have them for most of the week. I do not get excited about eating breakfast let alone cooking it. I needed to get it on auto-pilot.

Well, this was all fine until I got to the store and started looking at how much ground pork cost. Somehow, I managed to locate some pretty cheap ground pork in a tube, but it had added sugar in it (recall I cannot have the sugar). So it was out. I had given up and resigned myself to eggs for the week when I realized it didn’t have to be sausage OR eggs. It could be both.

These rules will be the death of me.

These rules will be the death of me.

That’s how I decided to make scrambled eggs with ground sausage and peppers for my breakfast. Yeah, this means I have to cook breakfast every single morning. I’ll live. I guess.

I also wanted to keep lunch and dinner simple. I really only like to cook at dinner time, but when I get home from yoga at 6:30 pm (and need to shower and walk the dog), I am not too down with cooking. I also needed meals that I could take with me for days when I would be at work.

I managed to identify two meals. The first is this grain free chicken salad. The second is a Tex-Mex salad. I figured that was good enough to at least get me started on week one. I think the two salads can easily be swapped back and forth for lunch or dinner depending on what I’m in the mood for.

Kick-off for the Whole30 is officially Saturday, March 1st since I have managed to make it to the grocery store in time. It will go the entire month of March – so 31 days and not 30. I’ll be checking in on Monday (Day 3) with an update.


Starting the Whole30

I’ve been traveling again this week for work, and in the back of my mind I remember that I once said I’d start this Whole30 challenge thing in March. It’s a little overwhelming. I haven’t had a lot of time to think about what I’m going to eat during it (but plenty of time to wrap my head around what I cannot eat which is just about everything I currently do eat). Getting stranded in Vegas seriously sank me. I had a ton of work to catch up on when I got back home.

March 1st is a Saturday. Hopefully I will have had time to go to the store and plan out my meals for the week. If not, worst case scenario, I can start on March 2nd. I’ll still go for 31 days.

See? Doesn't this look like my only option is water and sand?

See? Doesn’t this look like my only option is water and sand?

I’d like to do some of my breakfasts with juice. I know Whole30 isn’t a big juicing supporter, but I am and that’s not going to change. I’d like to use the weekend to get some juices made and frozen for the next two weeks. I may be eating a lot of salads the first week, but that’s ok!

I’ve also decided it’s ok to buy meat to have for one meal a day. This isn’t my personal ideal thing, but my thought is to start with the meat for some meals and then slowly back it out as I get a handle on things. It was too overwhelming to think about not eating meat and then taking out all legumes and grains. I felt like I had nothing left to eat! And I still feel that way even with the meat thrown back in. I haven’t cooked meat in about two years. It’s strange to think about doing it again.

I’m prepared for a rough ride even though I already don’t consume some of the forbidden foods (dairy for one). And I’ll be ok without soda. But sugar? Oh gees. It’s gonna be a rough ride. So batten down the hatches. Here goes nothing