My 1st Experience
with the Whole30 Program and Paleo eating
Day After - October 7th, 2013
Today was the day I ate some cheese. Yay!
But first things first.
Today is day 31, which means the day after completing the 30 days of the program. This is the day when people send their testimonials, so here is mine.
On the past 30 days, I changed my diet by a lot. Some things were not to big of a deal for me, but some others were. But even for the items I missed (cheese, anyone?) I think it was good that I stop eating them and I don't really plan to go back to them at a regular basis.
You ask me why?
Well, this is why:
This picure represents the physical changes:
- 10.5 pounds lost,
- thinner everywhere,
- fitting my old clothes that were not fitting me for quite some time
But that wasn't all. Other changes I noticed in the past 30 days:
- Better mood
- Consistent energy levels throughout the day (no need for the afternoon coffee boost to keep awaken)
- Sleeping like a baby (and even dreaming!)
- Awesome performance at workout and other physical activities
- Better focus and improved performance at work
- No more pain (plantar fasciitis is gone)
- Good skin (not that my skin has ever been bad... but it's still better now ;o)
- Happy happy!
Needless to say, the experience was great. And I plan to maintain it by sticking to a Paleo diet.
Right now, like today, I allowed myself a bit of cheese and other off-plan foods and drinks. At breakfast I had my eggs with a couple slices of sharp white cheddar; at lunch I ordered a salad from the grill, but did not ask them to remove the feta cheese; dinner was the meal I went more off-plan I had a pizza (or better said, a Tarte aux Champignons, from Trader Joes), some more slices of cheese, wine and a bit of Coconut Bliss Chocolate Hazelnut Fudge ice cream.
I'm not sure yet how all of these off-plan foods affected me, but I must say I wasn't feeling great at workout. Maybe lack of carbs (good ones)? Maybe eggs and cheese alone are not enough to hold me through 2 miles of jogging followed by an hour of circuit training? I don't know. I'll see on the next days.
Another day-after article I'd like to post is the testimonials I received from other people in our 2 Claps 1 Snap Whole30 group. So here they come...
Woo hoo, today we completed 30 days of the Whole30 program.
Before the program
I have always been struggling with an unhealthy relationship with food, I use food as the reflection of my mood and end up eating when I'm bored, stressed, happy or sad. Over the years, I would definitely qualify my diet as being relatively healthier in terms of cooking at home for the most part and eating "superfoods", but my food habits constantly kept struggling. When Ms V told about the Whole30 program and I started reading the book, it was definitely a revelation that I was under the clutches of the sugar dragon. My diet attempts had always been eating smaller frequent meals, but what I did not realize was that I ended up eating constantly and was hooked on food. I ended up having habits like if I walk by the fridge, I need to help myself to a portion of something, be it string cheese/a piece of candy and automatically at 3 PM, I would be on autopilot to the coffee machine. At one point, it did not even matter that I did not like what was in there, I just ended up eating it. No wonder my weight itself ended up taking a roller coaster ride – 2 steps forward, 2 steps back and startover!
While weight loss itself was definitely an attraction to pursue the Whole30 program, my primary goal was to break free of this endless loop and have healthy eating habits – only eat when I am hungry and stop when I'm full.
I was nervous about doing the Whole30 as a vegetarian since all material I could read focused on eating meat for protein and talked about shunning soy, legumes and lentils. The veggie Whole30 option however allowed fermented dairy, soy (tofu), legumes and lentils – when I spoke to Ms V about this paradox, she said something that I think did the trick – "When you are committing to the program, trust what they say and just do it." Of course, doing it as a group always keeps my motivation up and my husband (Sriram) and my friend (Deepa) also joined forces with the larger Whole30 group.
During the program
My first 2 days were all right, but the rest of my first week was the biggest drag I experienced - ranging from zombie staring all day to scowling at a Hi, even 30 minute workouts seemed endless. The second week was a lot better - I saw myself having consistent energy throughout the day and was able to work out much better. I ended up including everything in the Whole30 veggie list and felt it was working out fine. Greek yogurt became one of the sources of protein I counted on along with tofu and eggs. My cuisine (Indian) was definitely veggie Whole30 friendly and all we had to do was have our family eat the same food with us just skipping the grains.
Thanks to my mom who is visiting, she is now a Veggie Whole30 expert cooking Indian food by substituting grains with lentils and legumes, she definitely made it easier for us to keep up with the program. This was also my experimentation week with food - trying out different portions and really listening to what my hunger levels were. By the third and the fourth week, I felt like I had a hang of the system and kept going, I did not feel tiger blood as the newsletter says, but definitely felt energetic all day. My sleep was excellent, I could barely keep my eyes open after 11:30 and woke up a couple of minutes before my alarm went off at 6 (yeah, I personally think 8 hour sleep is a myth, but as long as I was fresh for my waking hours, I really don't mind). I did feel that my stress levels went down a lot. But most importantly, in alignment with my goal, I was able to really see when I was eating out of hunger and when out of craving. I felt my craving especially in the nights at 8:30 when I used to eat nuts or fruit or even some leftover dinner - this will be something I continue to work on.
End of the program
Yesterday was our 30th day and the results definitely brought out a smile. I had lost 7 lbs and my husband lost 7.5 lbs. Both of us had our "Know your numbers" appointment today and the numbers were brilliantly in the normal range. I had a triglyceride level of 99 which I certainly don't remember having in the past 8 years.
I still don't feel like I have everything under control, but I'm definitely proud of the progress. My sugar dragon is still lurking out there and for sustenance, I think I need to lock him out of his cellar, but keep him on a leash. I'm keeping up with the program (and including dairy) for at least the next one week. I dreamt about a latte as the first thing I would relish after the program. It was tasty indeed, but not as tasty as I had dreamt it to be.
Big thanks to the group for keeping the motivation up and I really hope we continue to checkpoint regularly in the future to keep this healthy habit going.
Hi Whole 30 team!
Today is my 31st day! I completed 30 days of WHOLE 30 and I can't begin to express the gratitude I have for this program and what I learned about myself and how food works in my body. As many of you know, I am in training for a marathon to raise money for Autism research and one thing that I have NEVER done in my training for these runs is a consistent nutrition plan, fitness program and running all together. For the first time in all of my runs I feel prepared mentally, physically and just more healthy. Thanks Victoria for believing in me and pushing me when I really thought about giving up. I followed these 30 days to a science. I didn't cheat one time and everything the plan said would happen did!
I slept better and woke up ready to go with energy that I never had before. My spirit changed, my body changed. I took a before and after picture and it was a clear difference. The scale reflected a 15 pound weight loss since Victoria took my body measurements back in August. I can keep up in class, I can run without getting tired as quickly. My skin looks brighter, my mood is better and there are a host of other things that use to be that are no longer there. I am not done with this program. I took today to have my very beautiful and refreshing Green Tea Latte, which I am slowly drinking now but I am not where I want to be. It will take more than 30 days for me to get my body healed from years of punishment. My marathon is October 13th so I will keep going through that day and I will celebrate that accomplishment and then I will continue healing my body.
I thought after this 30 days I would want to eat a tub of ice cream, drink a quart of milk and a bag of cheese and guess what? I don't want to. That means this worked for me.
Lessons Learned; Attitude is everything. You can accomplish what you tell your mind you WILL do. I will complete my marathon, I will get through another whole 30 and I will become a better and healthier me! Best to you all and please lets' stay connected as we continue to strive for a healthier us. We all deserve a big WHOLE 30 HUG!!!!!
Today marks Day 31 for me!!! :)
When I read the book, I was really pumped up about this sciency way of dealing with good eating habits... The timing was perfect given that I read power of habit on July, and was working on changing my eating habits and trying to incorporate the workout habits in daily routine..
Being a vegetarian I do have a lot of veggies and fruits in my daily diet, however having said it also includes curries, lentils, pulses. Generally speaking my eating habits have changed a lot over the last few years, I eat home cooked food 6 days a week, leaving the weekends to indulge in take outs/restaurants. I stopped eating rotis aka wheat intake about 6-8 months ago and left the sweet intake to occasional only. Even so I still had the last stubborn 15 pounds on me, had low energy levels especially at end of work days, I would rarely go out on a weekday after work... head home and be with the kids... I would drink coffee multiple times a day with milk and sugar to keep up with work.
Looking at the vegetarian list, the change I would have to bring in my diet from before W30 was basically to remove the grains, aka no rice and morning cereal. I thought that wasn't enough change for me given my diet earlier, so decide to go an extra step... and also exclude the lentils, pulses and dairy. It was a difficult choice for me, especially dairy, but decided to do this, after all its only 30 days... :)
First week was ok, however weekend was really hard given that in my earlier diet I would take time to eat out/ cook special on weekends, which means including cheese, breads, pastas.. etc I diverted my attention by using different websites to cook different kind of foods that were compliant yet delicious. After surviving the first weekend it gave me extra boost, and the rest of Whole 30 was easy for me... I am a very routine person... so eating egg for breakfast, salad for lunch and stir fry for dinner was alright even though it was for all the 30 days :) I made homemade lara bars, pumpkin with kale baked, scoops resemble the indian pakoda, homemade sweet potato chips, homemade kale chips for weekend pleasures... and loved them.... My biggest success with W30 was consistent energy levels throughout the day, less mood swings with no coffee!! I was in full swing even to go out with my whole family during week nights. Another big learning was read labels... I had no idea that we would have so many additives in every processed food we choose to eat, including things like ketchup and my favorite siracha hot sauce.. Not that I would never use these now... but at least when I use these I know what they are really contain and use my moderation/judgment... this is pretty eye-opening. Another learning was you can cook healthy and tasty food, there are options !!
As for know your numbers my numbers were not very different from last year, only lost ~3 pounds in the whole month. And my cholesterol/BMI numbers which are of concern to me, also did not really change as much as I expected them to change