So, what is Whole30?
Whole30 is a 30 day plan of being completely and totally sugar free. Seriously. Sugar free. Black coffee. NO SUGAR. It’s only whole foods. And usually described as some kind of gastro-reset. Other things not included on Whole30 include dairy, legumes, grains, and alcohol. Basically you’re allowed meat, veggies, fruit, and nuts. Another big mainstay? Drinking plenty of water! Some people loose weight while they do it, some don’t. Since you can eat potatoes while you’re on it, it’s not as easy to lose weight. The most important part of Whole30? Reading labels! It’s amazing how many things have hidden sugar in them (deli meat, for example). But what you get out of Whole30 is decidedly what you put in.
A few things I did to try to make it easier:
I am a teacher, so my lunch must be planned and managed. I am very, very, very lucky in that I have a student teacher who works in a restaurant before he comes to work in my classroom. He brings me a salad. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. So lunch at work is always the same: shaved, roasted turkey on a salad with oil and seasonings. Done. I do not like breakfast, never have. It makes my stomach hurt. And transitioning to black coffee….well, that took me almost a month. As did breaking my long standing addiction to Diet Dr Pepper. But, I can proudly say, I don’t see myself going back. Alcohol? Not a major mainstay in my life, so that wasn’t too hard to let go of.
Life’s most daunting task to accomplish: dinner!!! In comes every mother’s saving grace of the 21st century: Pinterest! And, to my delight, local Memphis mom and food blogger, Cheryl Malik at 40 Aprons, is all over Whole30 Pinterest boards! She has some amazing recipes that I’ve used and linked below. Seriously, her work is phenomenal! She explains the recipes and how to modify them for different types of diet choices. Even her sides are yummy. Seriously, awesome.
I present to you the dinner plan for the first 10 days and how well I toughed it out.
The first 10 days:
Day 1: This was the easiest day for me. Lots of fun meal prepping and tons of veggies!!
Day 2: Tried a recipe from Pinterest for sausage, potatoes, onions, and bacon in a crock pot for dinner. It was not amazing.
Day 3: Taco night. Made Cauliflower rice instead of my usual white rice. And this was really tasty! Recipe found by clicking on that picture. (Yes, the picture is of shrimp and “grits,” but if you don’t puree the cauliflower, it has rice-like texture and is still super tasty!)Day 4: Things were still going well. We did burgers for dinner and I used sweet potato slices for my bun. I got this.
Day 5: Grilled chicken, kale (Cheryl’s garlic version), and smashed potatoes. I’m doing this thing!
Day 6: Chinese night. Chicken and Pineapple. Beef and Broccoli. Cauliflower Rice.
Day 7: Chicken, apples, sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts. And my first weekend day since starting. I made egg salad for lunch. I love egg salad. Like Pink Panther loves Jessica, love. But, I have always eaten it with triscuits. Always. And my husband took my 16 year old to Sam’s club to get lunch and snack things. And a VERY large box of triscuits sat on my counter. And it called my name. And I walked away. And then it screamed at me! Finally I caved and ate about 8 triscuits. So, technically, Day 8 is Day 1 again. But who’s counting?
Day 8: We eat leftovers on the weekend. And there were tons and I ate lots of them. Also, eggs, kale, and leftover potatoes all mixed up in the skillet taste amazing after a 4.5 mile walk! In case you were wondering.
Day 9: Black coffee: check. Salad for lunch: Check. Dinner… ok. I’m now craving all things carbohydrate and not vegetable.
Day 10: Great day! No cravings. Kids ended up going out to dinner with the husband so I ate leftover things and a sweet potato. I am Whole30 rebounding!!
Day 11: FAIL. Faculty meeting had beautiful sandwiches and iced tea. (Really amazing faculty meeting, right???) Tomorrow I’ll try Day 1. Again.
But, Whole30 Chicken Nuggets and Chick-fil-A sauce is my next recipe, and I am bound for greatness (once again, click the photo to get the recipe)!
(This is not diet advice from a doctor. Please consult your doctor before undertaking a diet change that may have a negative effect on your health.)