Whole 30: Fail.

I did not succeed at the whole 30.  I gained weight, and then became frustrated at how restrictive it was, and how it did not allow for cheating.  My mantra with diets has always been that it should be sustainable, and Whole 30 just isn’t.  All in all, I lasted three weeks.

My problems with Whole 30:

  1. It’s too restrictive.  It cuts out things that are healthy.  I understand this is to see if you have a problem with these foods, but I became convinced after two weeks that I did not have a problem with those foods.  As a bonus, when I feel restricted, I overeat and get really lazy.
  2. It’s not sustainable.  It’s not supposed to be sustainable, but it does not even seem to be leading to something sustainable.  You see people on R4D5 or whatever.  People use it as a diet, but just gain and lose the same pounds.  That’s not healthy physically or psychologically.

No, an eating plan should be something you want to do every day.  And fasting is that for me.  I am at a good point with how I look, but there is one problem… a bridesmaid dress I bought for a wedding in May does not fit!!  I could easily just buy a bigger size, but it seems to fit everywhere except my waist, and it is almost zipping.  I am convinced it would zip if I hadn’t had pancakes for breakfast this morning, that’s how close we are.

I plan on cutting back on carbs for a while, and if in a month it still doesn’t fit, I will get a new dress.  I always have these grand, cutting back on carbs plans that do not work.  So I am going to do the South Beach Diet, in addition to my fasting routine.  I did SBD in college and loved the food and the results, but my problem since has been these vague plans to do it again, or starting at phase 2.  No.  This time, I will start at phase 1 with the two weeks of eggs, eggs and more eggs and then go from there.  I really have no plans to buy a whole new wardrobe, so I am only going for a 5-pound loss.  If that doesn’t happen, or doesn’t get me into the dress, then I will get a new dress.  Period.


Day 9:  Holy (subjective) hypoglycemia

Yesterday I got back to the town where I go to school and decided to really challenge myself:  kickboxing class and, because I had made that challenge to myself, I would run to that class.  Everything was going well with the run until I had to wait a long time  to cross a busy intersection.  As soon as I started up I felt a bit dizzy, then I started feeling weak, hot and hungry.  I ended up walking the last mile and going to the grocery store to get some water and bananas.  I felt much better by the end of the warm-up to class, so it ended up being ok.

This also happened nearly a week ago when I was running at my mom’s gym.  I took a bathroom break and BOOM! dizzy, warm, hungry.  It was a Sunday so the little cafe was not open and I had to pick the sunflower seeds and raisins out of a vending machine trail mix.

What happened?  My eating for the day had been bad, that’s what happened.  Yesterday, my dad, who is doing this with me, was all excited about a papaya he had bought and allowed to ripen, so we each had papaya with breakfast.  I couldn’t find any veggies laying around (my grocery shopping had lapsed since I was leaving) so I just had eggs and pulled pork with the papaya.  Then, during what would have been lunch I was driving back to school.  I almost forgot about lunch, but when I remembered I scarfed down about 3 cups of carrots (I know, I know…Costco…) and two packets of applesauce.  I really wasn’t hungry when I got home and thought I would be fine until after the gym…but I was wrong.  Almost as a premonition, earlier in the day I had driven by a shopping center that I knew had a cupcake place in it (I have never actually seen the cupcake place) and could not stop thinking about cupcakes for the rest of the day.

So to sum it up, I think it was the fruit that did me in.  I am feeling more stabilized with my cravings now (well, I was before yesterday) and I think I need to eat less fruit.  I would have a banana or apple with almond butter after my evening workouts during week 1 and I think I need to switch to something more protein-based now.  I am also going to stay away from white potatoes, because I can’t stop making hashbrowns.

Has anyone else had certain foods they seem to be overeating, or that are causing blood sugar swings or bad reactions?

Day 7: Heaviness and a new challenge

Well, nearly a full week in!  I am not having as many problems with “carb flu” as I was, I think because I am eating a Larabar before kickboxing (people frown on this, but I think eating it before a hard workout is good).  No cravings.

One thing I do feel is kind of heavy.  Not bloated (!!), but like my feet are magnetic.  Also, when I wake up in the morning I don’t feel ready to go, I feel like I could sleep longer and usually I can.  This is probably a good thing since I am usually a light sleeper.

Now that I am one week in, I’ve decided to try a challenge for one week.

Challenge 1:  Running

I like to run, but it kind of goes by the wayside in winter.  Last winter, I actually did run several times per week outside, because I was training for a marathon.  This winter, I haven’t been as good.

My challenge to myself will be, for the next seven days, to run six miles per day.  I will start today, because next Thursday I have to work from 6am-10pm, so will not exercise at all that day.

Check out the new recipe I cooked today!  Crockpot Thai Curry

Day 5: Mania and recipes

I had my first start on December 28.  I am on break from school, so things went pretty well with the cooking, but then New Year’s Eve hit.  I went to a birthday party with my boyfriend and did pretty well, sipping black coffee and eating a banana while he drank beer.

Afterwards we went to his house… and his kids had made all sorts of treats.  I think the moment I decided to cheat was when he showed me a chunk of blue cheese he was going to put on the steaks.  Two of his friends and two of my friends were coming over, and I knew refusing junk food on NYE would not be cool to them (I am not overweight, so….).

I ended up having: 2 beers, chips with taco dip, blue cheese and bananas foster crepes.  Needless to say, I felt SICK (this is not new, I always feel sick when I eat junk food).  It was not really worth it for the food experience, but probably for the social experience.  I justified it by reminding myself that initially I had planned on starting January 1.

But then I re-started on January 1.  And things have been going well since then.  The first go around I felt achy and foggy on Day 4, but this time I haven’t had much of that.  So I think the first four days were not a complete waste.  I have been eating a lot, and don’t really feel that I have lost any weight, but I realize that may not happen.  Over Christmas I re-started kickboxing and strength training through Farrell’s, a gym that is mainly in the Midwest.  Some days the kickboxing is harder than others, although I have found that if I have just eaten prior to going, I don’t get stomach aches like I do with regular food.

Goals check-in:

I am going to do a goals check-in every few days, just to be mindful of how I am progressing.

  1. Have more energy:  On Sunday, especially (2 days ago), I almost felt manic.  I had tons of energy and was in a great mood.  Yesterday I felt kind of slow, but still in a great mood.  So far, so good.
  2. Sleep better:  I have had two nights so far where I slept like a rock.  That usually only happens when I am very tired, and seeing as I have been on break since October, it has not been happening much.
  3. Get rid of flab:  Hard to tell since I have not been wearing work-out clothes very often.
  4. Decrease itching/sensitivity to certain fabrics: Has improved somewhat.  Not completely gone.


Recipe of the day:

Moroccan beef and sweet potato stew

Beef and sweet potato stew.jpg


How many of you are just starting the Whole 30?  What have some of your greatest struggles been so far?

Step 1: Pre-contemplation

As you can see, it is December 28, the time of year when most of the Christmas cookies have migrated to our thighs and the planning starts for reversing this.  Happily, yesterday I stepped on the scales and, although I felt 20 pounds heavier, my weight had not budged.  This is largely thanks to my 3 years of intermittent fasting.

But lately, I have been feeling like I could do more to feel better.  Last Spring, I joined a program that combines kickboxing with strength training six days per week, thinking that would up my energy level.  But, feeling very comfortable at my current weight and with my current eating plan, I did not change my diet as they recommended.   Things have gone downhill since then.  I am in my last year of grad school so have been traveling a lot interviewing for jobs. This wreaked havoc on my eating and my exercise routine, and I just returned to kickboxing after 3 months away.

Today, I have pimples on my face where I’ve never had them.  I am chronically itchy and it has gotten worse.  I am not sleeping well, and my energy is down.  I am generally against diets that seem short-term and unsustainable.  Especially for weight loss.  Given that I have the weight thing under control with fasting (my BMI is 20.5), I am prepared to strictly commit to the whole 30 plan for one month.  If it does make me feel better, I will continue it in whatever form I can sustain.  If not, I will return to fasting and somehow try and eat more fruits and vegetables (!!).

I will, over the next few days, try and make some changes just for the sake of being healthier and feeling better.  My plan is to start the plan in earnest on January 1 and be strict about it for 30 days.  I will post updates as I go, and hopefully share some good recipes.