For those of you who haven't heard of the Whole 30 it's 30 days of no dairy, no grains, no legumes, and no added sugar. So basically meat, vegetables, and fruit.
I had heard about it over the years on a number of blogs I read and while we were in Chicago for our anniversary all of a sudden it popped into my head as something we should do. Normally we would talk ourselves out of it somehow, but instead within 2 weeks of coming home we had our fridge and pantry cleaned out of all things non-compliant and were ready to go.
One of the main driving forces which I don't think people would think of when they first hear of us doing the Whole 30 was to be better at meal planning. We were getting so lazy, we both work into the evening sometimes and getting dinner on the table can just be daunting when you're already tired from a long day - let alone getting a healthy meal on the table.
I'm the type of personality that has to do it all the way or not at all, this year we gave up desserts for all of 2016...and it is so much easier for us to do that than to say "let's eat less desserts" or "let's eat more vegetables" we seem to be the types that need something really regimented in order to succeed. I knew that doing something that so drastically changed our diet would really kick our butts into gear on the meal planning front.
Now that we're on the other side I thought I'd share some of our results and what worked for us. I should start by saying that we absolutely loved the Whole 30 and are planning to do either the exact thing again right away or potentially slightly revised and longer with some different rules. More on that in the future!
To start off with a bang, those of you who might be thinking about this from a weight loss perspective - it wasn't what we had aimed for but it was a very welcome side effect. In 30 days I lost 18 pounds. I am heavier than some and so it shed off fairly quickly but in all my years of exercising/eating right attempts I have never had those kind of results. I never felt hungry, ate delicious meals, and didn't exercise other than going for walks and the calories that are burnt while living life. That is partly why I want to keep going with it, because if I could get to a healthier weight this way that would be awesome. We had some party foods this week since being off the Whole 30 so I'm sure some is right back on, but we're planning to do this again right after Thanksgiving and likely continue it for a longer period than the 30 days. This next 30 we will definitely add in using the treadmill to this because it's important to eat healthy and exercise our muscles too.
- FRUIT! We were so happy fruit was still in the running. It honestly got me through the first few days. Sometimes a craving could be easily quenched with a juicy bite of pineapple. We also bought this smoothie in the produce aisle that was the best thing ever. We bought it to try to help get off caffeine during this because while you can drink black coffee, neither of us were interested in that. We purchased this smoothie made by Happy Planet in British Columbia, and it was made of fruit puree and yerba mate which has a bit of caffeine I imagine. We tried to indulge in moderation because it is really fruit packed so definitely had some sugar in the natural forms, none added in so it was Whole 30 compliant.
- One of my favourite breakfasts was what I was calling a "galette." I don't know that it fit the traditional description of a galette, but it was freaking delicious and I liked giving it a fancy name. In order to create this breakfast delight, line a frying pan with prosciutto to start. Turn the frying pan on to medium heat-ish (I don't actually remember what heat I set it to but I usually just play it by ear). Next put some mushroom slices and asparagus spears on the prosciutto. Finally crack eggs directly on top. So pretty! I usually would put a little bit of water in the lid of my pan and then pour it into the pan while putting the lid on top. Then I turn the heat low and let the eggs and vegetables steam. I actually want this for breakfast tomorrow now that I'm describing it. Ugh so good. You could easily switch up the vegetables to include broccoli, peppers, etc. etc. Anything will fly! Prosciutto was a great snack during the Whole 30 because most bacons had added sugar at our local grocery store. This was a nice breakfast meat and could also be eaten as a snack wrapped around a pickle!
- My favourite way to eat vegetables of which we ate a plenty was roasted! I got so sick of steamed vegetables and raw vegetables by about day 3. I love vegetables but I just wasn't in the mood for them, however put some olive oil and garlic on those things and slap them into the oven - best food ever. I could have eaten roasted beets/sweet potatoes/broccoli/cauliflower every single day and not been sick of it.
Are you interested in joining us in our challenge to do an extended Whole 30 from October 11-December 23? If so, send me an email! I'd love to team up with others who are interested in reaping the benefits of the Whole 30 and work together to think of recipes, vent about challenges, and maybe more! firstname.lastname@example.org will get you in touch with me so we can talk about how we can encourage each other.