Brandon and I finished the Whole30 program on March 8th. 30 days of no grains, legumes, alcohol, dairy, soy, or added sugars. Prior to embarking on the Whole30 journey, I had no idea if we'd actually follow through with it and complete the program. There are a lot of restrictions and it definitely took a lot of planning and meal prepping but it wasn't impossible to accommodate. I remember reading in It Starts With Food that "giving birth is hard, fighting cancer is hard, not having creamer in your coffee for 30 days is NOT hard." First of all, I drink my coffee black so that was the least of my concerns but the same thing applies for giving up dark chocolate or a glass of wine. There are much harder things in life than cutting out some foods for 30 days. Also, during this endeavor Brandon and I really tried to focus on all the foods we COULD eat, instead of all the things we COULDN'T eat. Perspective is everything :)
|Our celebratory completion photo! :)|
What I Liked
- That the focus is on consuming whole, unrefined foods. Eating this way has many benefits and I LOVED the way I felt after eating. Minimal bloating and digestion issues!
- No calorie counting, weighing of food or obsessing over over consumption. This is a huge deal for me since I have always had a troubled relationship with food (binge eating, obsessive calorie counting, etc).
- Having a support system! My sister completed two rounds of Whole30 before us, so she was an amazing resource. She was always willing to answer any questions we had and provided us a lot of inspiration to keep going. As well, I am so SO thankful that Brandon chose to go through this process with me. We helped each other through the struggles and I'm really not sure I could have done it without his support and love. He's the best :)
What I Disliked
- I got really, really sick of cooking every single meal and doing SO many dishes. Sometimes, in the early morning or after a long day of work, the last thing I wanted to do was cook but we managed. Meal prep is awesome and it's definitely something I am trying to stick with after Whole30 since it saves so much time during the week.
- The cost of Whole30 foods. I follow a lot of people on social media from the States who can just easily run to the nearest Trader Joe's or Whole Foods however that's not the case in Manitoba. We thankfully found a lot of foods we could eat (hello cashew butter!) but it just took a lot of label reading and it wasn't easy on the bank account.
- Having to explain the program to people who questioned why I wasn't eating staff room treats or why I couldn't eat certain foods off the menu. It just gets tiring having to explain it over and over to people and listen to their opinions on why it's "ridiculous" or "stupid". My sister told me that when people asked her about it, she would start by mentioning all the foods she COULD eat and really tried to focus on all the positives of the program. I quickly adapted this strategy instead of saying "well you can't eat grains, dairy, legumes, soy, alcohol, sugars, etc", I would say "we eat a lot of fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, eggs, nuts, oils. etc".