It’s been a week since I completed my Whole30 and I’m so happy I did it.
It was a challenging, exciting, eye-opening experience. It may sound a bit dramatic, but it will forever change the way I look at food. It encouraged me to try new foods and step out of my usual (but not ideal) diet. And when I say diet, I mean the way I’m eating in general. Not “diet” in terms of weight loss. I don’t believe those really work. They may work as a short term fix, but long term… it’s nutrition and health that’s important.
Ok, back to what we’re here for…
I didn’t do a perfect Whole30, but I intentionally did my best. There was learning curve and a lifestyle adjustment which made it challenging, but each day got easier and made more sense. I’m so excited to share these results with you because it means my body responded well and it was worth the change!
Mental + Emotional Results
More even tempered: There were definitely times where I was irritable (especially in that first week), but overall I was pretty even. I wasn’t experiencing the sugar highs and then crashes. Since I was more comfortable in my body and satisfied, I was able to relax.
Positive goal to work towards: Whole30 gave me something to work towards! Since it was just 30 days, I knew it wouldn’t be forever (unless I chose to continue forever). I focused on my goal of completing and that made it fun.
Stronger will power: I was able to say “no” to the things that wouldn’t serve my goal. I stayed true to what I was working towards. I think it was easier since I had a predetermined goal through Whole30 and was held accountable to the close people in my life.
Connected to community: Whole30 has an incredible community and that made me feel connected during the entire process. The website, the books, the Instagram accounts — all these things gave me motivation and ideas to keep moving forward.
Reduced cravings: I have such a big sweet tooth. I would crave sweets, especially at night or after dinner. Not a good habit, but often times I would give into that craving. You crave what you consume, so once I was free from the sugar my body didn’t really miss it. Of course if something was right in front of me, I may want it, but I didn’t have that blind, random craving. That was amazing to me because I didn’t think it could go away.
Reduced hunger: I was eating less, but better foods during these 30 days. I used to eat every few hours, but learned that’s not the best for your body and your hormones. I was extra hungry the first week (especially the first few days) as my body was getting used to this new rhythm, but once it did it was glorious! I ate 3 healthy meals and maybe a snack or two if I was still hungry. I was working out almost daily, so I needed the extra nutrition.
Proud + accomplished: Whole30 gave me a sense of pride and accomplishment. It wasn’t easy and not everyone can or wants to do it. I proved to myself that I could make it happen.
Improved confidence: Internal changes + external changes = boost
Lost 9 pounds: This speaks for itself! I was surprised by how much I actually lost. Weight loss wasn’t the ultimate goal of this, but it was a very nice byproduct! I didn’t take before/after measurements or pictures, but my clothes are fitting better and I can tell my body is slimmer.
Clearer skin: My skin has always had a struggle, some times more than others. Taking out the problem foods (like dairy and gluten) did a wonder for my skin. It positively impacted my skin’s tone and reduced the amount of blemishes. It’s still not perfect, but opened my eyes to actually how much nutrition affects it. Whole30 introduced me to collagen supplements (Vital Proteins is the brand I’m using) so we’ll see how that helps!
Reduced bloat/tummy problems: This was a big one! It had become normal to feel bloated or to have tummy rumbles after a meal. Turns out, that isn’t normal! I mean it is normal when you’re eating tacos, pizza, or big meals out. But it isn’t exactly normal when you’re eating nourishing, natural, healthy foods. Who knew??
Normal blood pressure: So I can’t determine if this was totally from Whole30 since I didn’t check it prior to starting, but I can say confidently that Whole30 only improved it. Because of my thyroid (or lack thereof now) I’ve had issues with my blood pressure. I had 2 doctor appointments about halfway through my Whole30 and both found my blood pressure to be normal and healthy. Yay! It’s always good to hear good news from the doctor and nurse.
Better sleep: Sleep is so important for our bodies and minds. I didn’t always get enough of it, but I felt a deeper sleep. I also fell asleep faster (probably because my stomach wasn’t hurting or bloated at night).
I didn’t experience the energy boost or mental clarity other people have felt. Of course, everyone’s body reacts differently. I already struggle in these areas because of my chronic hypothyroidism, so I’m starting behind most other people. This may change as I go back to my “normal” eating — maybe I really did have a lot more energy and clarity, but I didn’t have a comparison since it was the new normal. The great thing is I can be more mindful to how my body is responding to food.
I cooked and planned my food more/better than really ever before! This experience required it. It got tiring at times, but it was such a good habit to get into and one I plan on continuing. Just maybe not as intensely so it’s sustainable for me long term.
So what now?
I didn’t end my Whole30 the best way (with a slower reintroduction phase) since we had our trip to Los Angeles. As you can imagine, that trip involved a good amount of normal food (not Whole30 approved), but that’s a part of my Food Freedom. That was worth it to me because it was special as somewhere I’ve never been before. And it was just a few days. So where do I go from here?
My new normal diet will be Whole30 inspired, but not as strict.
I will eat mindfully.
I will meal plan and prep foods that nourish my body.
I will keep dairy and gluten to a minimum in my diet.
I will make the Whole30 dishes that I discovered.
I will use healthier alternatives.
I will enjoy a Food Freedom and not feel guilty about what I choose to eat.
It is my choice — if I listen to and respect my body I will make the best choice.
Thank you so much for coming alongside me on this journey. Is there a change you need to make in your own life? Diet? Exercise? Career? Family? Something else?? I encourage you to make it. Take the next right step to improve your world.
If that happens to be Whole30, you’ve got these blogs (and me) as a great starting place and cheerleader! You can totally do it — the only thing is, do you want to do it? The beautiful thing about life is you can always start new right where you are. It’s never too late or too early.
Do you have any questions for me?? If there’s anything I can do to help, please don’t hesitate to reach out ❤