Whole30, Day 30: What I’ve learned
You guys. I MADE IT. Tomorrow I can eat WHATEVER I want. Booze, pasta, office donuts, coffee creamer – I can enjoy them all!
Except… I don’t want to! After seeing all the positive changes that clean eating has made in my life, I’m not going to be running to the nearest Chinese buffet anytime soon. Even though my Whole30 journey has been nowhere near perfect, I still feel stronger, cheerier, and more in control of myself than ever before.
So what are these epiphanies I’ve had since beginning Whole30? I’m so glad you asked.
Alcohol is not a necessity. (In fact, it’s more of a crutch.)
What are you more pumped about: The beer? or the fact that you’re with your best friend skiing at Breckenridge? (Hint: There’s only one right answer.)
When I started Whole30, I was most nervous about quitting alcohol. No happy hours after work? No beers on the patio with my boyfriend? No wine at dinners with my parents? What is the POINT, then? But that right there IS the point. I realized I was focusing more on the food and booze at those events than on the people themselves. People I LOVE. And it took me swearing off booze for 30 days to realize it.
At your next social outing, try something for me: Don’t drink. Just sip your water and enjoy the company of family and friends. It’s hard, isn’t it? You don’t have to go 30 days to realize you’ve been counting on alcohol as a pick-me-up. Just one meal will do.
Once Whole30 is over, I plan to go back to drinking moderately, but only socially. And I’ll do so with the knowledge that if I’m not careful, I can focus on just the alcohol and not the awesome people sitting around it.
What you put into your body really does matter. (And not just in a hippie dippy sort of way.)
It’s like when I eat green things I actually feel better… So weird.
For YEARS, I’ve been joking about the exact day my metabolism stopped working: January 17, 2014. Before that date: hot, perky college girl. Afterward: Well, not that.
But that anecdote is just another way for me to avoid the obvious: I’m not going to have the body I want unless I work for it. Like hard. I’m not one of those women who can drink one glass of wine a night instead of two and drop 5 pounds. (And honestly, who is?)
The Whole30 forced me to admit a difficult fact: If I want to feel better, look better and have more energy, I have to change my behavior. And you know what? It actually worked. I am less bloated, my clothes fit better, I have more energy to work out and I know I’ve lost weight. No matter what the scale says when I check it tomorrow.
If you’re one of those people who has struggled to lose weight, even when you’re eating healthy and exercising regularly, a Whole30 might be the added bit you need to succeed.
Whole30 is totally do-able. (Even if you have NO cooking/shopping/nutrition skills.)
If you can make taco meat, you can do Whole30. Seriously.
If there’s one thing to take away from my experience, it’s this: You can do this. It doesn’t have to be fancy, it doesn’t have to be delicious, it just has to be 30 DAYS.
I only prepared about five full-on “Whole30 recipes” the entire month – and they weren’t even the best thing I ate! The rest of my diet was super simple: Baked chicken, fruit smoothies, vegetable soups, salads made from whatever I had on hand, etc. It was NOT a big production every night. In fact, it was a lot of eating almonds out of my purse (and that’s okay.)
Don’t be scared off by the things you can’t eat (like the minor meltdown I had about cutting edamame, hummus and deli turkey). Instead, just take it one day at a time. On day two, I thought, “There’s no way I make it through 30 days of this.” But then week one came and went, and then week two, and at that point, I had already established some new skills that were carrying me through.
It is going to be messy. It is going to be difficult. But you CAN do it. And no matter what the book tells you, you can still have a successful Whole30 even if you drink a beer on Day 25, like I did.
What other questions/concerns/fear do you have about Whole30 (or another big lifestyle change)? I’d love to hear about them. Just leave me a comment or shoot me a message.