Monday, July 09, 2012

Day 26

funny pictures - Cyoot Kitteh of teh Day: Kitteh's Big Climb
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I feel like this kitty! My big climb, if you want to call it that, is nearing the end. I'm on Day 26 of Whole 30 and feel awesome. It's been twenty-six days of healthy eating—meat, veggies, fruit and nuts. So what If I haven't had any dairy, grains (not even gluten-free ones), sugar, alcohol and legumes? I've survived a deadline with no chocolate. Revisions, too! If you're a long-time reader of this blog, you know how huge that is for me.

The funny thing is eating healthy hasn't been as tough as I thought it would be. Just writing that makes me shake my head, but face it. Eating healthy wasn't the norm around here. It was all about convenience and what tasted good. Rather what I thought tasted good.

But the Whole 30 program is so strict you can't say you didn't know what you could or couldn't eat. It's hard to fail unless you have zero willpower. As long as I read the labels, I'm fine. I'm much better at that now. It's amazing what they add sugar to these days. It was even in the minced ginger I'd purchased at New Seasons that remains unopened in the pantry.

I've realized how easy it is for food habits to form. Whole 30 stresses real food over convenience food. I was worried about the time preparing meals, but it hasn't been bad at all. The kids have liked all but one of the meals (and that was one someone had posted on their Facebook page when they asked for slow-cooker recipes rather than one the program provided.)

The best part is how good I feel. I really meant what I wrote above...I do feel awesome. My mood, my energy and no pain in my knee or my shoulder. I haven't taken any ibuprofen this entire time. (It's suggested not to take any NSAIDs and use plain old aspirin if need be.) But I haven't used any which is pretty incredible given the last couple of years! I just sucked it up through the headaches the first couple of days. They call it "Carb flu." I call it sugar withdrawal.

At the end of the thirty days, you start reintroducing foods back into your diet one at a time. It'll be interesting to see what happens. I have a feeling dairy might be the big one for me. Does that mean I'll never have ice cream again if that turns out to be the case? Nope. But it means I'll be choosy about when I do eat it and save ice cream for special splurges.

Of course, I have until Friday still to go with the initial program. I can't wait to step on the scale. (You aren't supposed to do that for the 30 days.) People say I've lost weight. I'm curious to see if I have! I definitely don't feel as bloated. (Weight loss isn't a goal for this program. They believe by eating healthier and making better food choices you'll naturally lose the weight.)

If you want a better explanation about what I've been doing these past 26 days, here's Whole 30's 60 second elevator pitch from the Whole9 blog about their nutrition program:
I eat real food – fresh, natural food like meat, vegetables and fruit. I choose foods that are nutrient-dense, with lots of naturally occurring vitamins and minerals, over foods that have more calories but less nutrition. And food quality is important – I’m careful about where my meat, seafood and eggs come from, and buy organic local produce as often as possible.

This is not a “diet” – I eat as much as I need to maintain strength, energy, activity levels and a healthy body weight. I aim for well-balanced nutrition, so I eat both animals and a significant amount of plants. I’m not lacking carbohydrates – I just get them from vegetables and fruits instead of bread, cereal or pasta. And my meals are probably higher in fat than you’d imagine, but fat is a healthy source of energy when it comes from high-quality foods like avocado, coconut and grass-fed beef.

Eating like this is ideal for maintaining a healthy metabolism and reducing inflammation within the body. It’s good for body composition, energy levels, sleep quality, mental attitude and quality of life. It helps eliminate sugar cravings and reestablishes a healthy relationship with food. It also works to minimize your risk for a whole host of lifestyle diseases and conditions, like diabetes, heart attack, stroke and autoimmune.
Hope you enjoy your Monday!