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Third Whole 30 starts today.


I did my first in April 2012, and another earlier this year. My first was an incredible success. Eliminated low back pain, arthritis inflammation in my hands, acne (I now know is caused by dairy), headaches. Lost something like 17 pounds. Felt amazing. My second was less stellar, as I never quite got over a few food cravings for things that were "technically" compliant, so I followed the letter but missed some of the spirit of the thing, got to looking and feeling great again anyway.


I am in a major and long-term state of flux; I live on two continents, and am now looking at setting up the next phase with dh on a third. Moved from a life where I grew all my own food, literally slaughtered all our own meat, to the polar opposite of that, living in an urban desert environment where almost no food grows locally. I spend summers as a single parent, school years as a stay-home, homeschooling mom. I went from owning 10 acres to owning little more than I can check with the airlines.


Not all the changes are negative, but they have challenged my sense of identity and control. What I put in my body, of course, is one of the few things I truly can control, and oddly, it seems to be the thing I give up control over most easily, with least resistance. That changes today. I know how grains, sugar and dairy affect my health, and I need my health to continue to move through this phase of our lives.


I have dietary restrictions that make it harder to comply with my Whole 30 in North America--but not impossible. I have to go farther and look harder for my meats (halal food in a semi-rural area), and they are more expensive even than some of the nice organics in the supermarket. But a little research and extra effort are worthwhile for the ability to feel so much better in body and mind.


So, today's plan starts with coffee and coconut milk, eggs with kale and smoked salmon, before heading off to a family gathering. There, there will be vegetables for me and no doubt piles of sugar and flour to refuse. Once back home, I have a leftover turkey and veg curry for dinner. There is a leg of lamb thawing in the fridge for later in the week, and tomorrow we will visit the farmers' market to see what we can find there. It is the best food season right now, so I really have nothing to complain about! Going to make lists of foods I can make and go from there. 


In a month, Ramadan begins, which takes intermittent fasting to a whole new level.  ;) Here, we are looking at 17+ hours fasting (also abstaining from drinking, because this is a religious fast, not a dietary one) and a short window for eating, hydrating and movement between 8:40PM and 3:20AM at the start of the month (the fasting day will shrink minute-by-minute over the month). My hope is for a lot of time spent reading, studying, meditating and praying during the fasting hours. And napping. I am fortunate not to have a job, and to have the luxury of building my days around my needs. I live in a safe enough place where I can run or walk at night, and I have access to a 24-hour indoor fitness center. No excuses.


But meantime, I have just enough time for a Whole 30 to get my body and mind healthy and strong and ready for the challenge. Here we go.

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Wow!  That is a lot of change.  Pre-planning is going to be key for you, but I think you already know that one.  You seem resourceful and experienced so I think you will be fine.  Here you go!


Is the pain back?  What is the primary reason for your 3rd Whole30 in a year?  Cravings?



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Thanks Pam.  :) Hey, WI is my summer place.


Back pain and hand pain are back, but the main reason I need to do it again is because I feel so much more centered and human and whole when I keep to the Whole 9 principles. I can get into that sweet spot of balance between food, rest, exercise, work, play, etc. and I just feel more capable of meeting my obligations in life. And when I live apart from my dh, I can tend to look to food for comfort after the kids have gone to bed, etc. Being on board with a structured program makes it so much easier to avoid things that are no good for me anyway. And for me there is such synergy between good eating, sleep, and exercise, it all snowballs and in a month I feel so super.


It's just amazing how easy it is to throw things off balance and lose it. One 15-hour flight and a couple days at my parents' was enough to bring back sugar headaches.


Day 1 is well underway, and I feel great.

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Hooray! This thing is starting to click again. One really great thing is all the support and accountability checking I get from friends and (some) family here. Ahhh.


Today went great. Breakfast was coffee and coconut milk. Lunch was beef and veg chili. Afternoon at the beach, where I ate an apple and some watermelon. Dinner was salad with mackerel and some egg salad.


I also managed a really nice, if slow, run in the morning. Just feeling overall so much better already.


Cooked a big leg of lamb today, for meals for me and the kids for the next couple days. Tomorrow, meeting my sister for a farmer's market visit, and hoping to use the lamb like shawarma/gyros meat for salads/lettuce wraps.


Going to bed in just half an hour with a little magnesium. Tomorrow should be good.

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Wow. I'd forgotten about the good, deep sleep. First seriously excellent sleep I've had in a few weeks, since probably two weeks before leaving the Gulf. Between the travel and jet lag, stress of the Great Schlepp and the food-related hot mess I was, just...wow. I was in bed by 10 last night and awoke around 6 feeling great.


The soreness is subsiding and yesterday already I could feel my low back starting to creak and click, like it might be going "back in" anytime. This is very good news.


Today's food so far:

M1: coffee + coconut milk, 3 eggs fried in ghee (out of vegetables)

M2: Salad of mesclun, tomato, red pepper, cucumber, radish and avocado. Dressing of tahini, lemon, EVOO, ACV, garlic, salt and spices. Topped with sliced roasted lamb. Followed by small bowl of sliced strawberries and raspberries with a drizzle of coconut butter.


M3 will be scrounging. I have some cut veggies that need to go, some egg salad, more HB eggs. After the seriously ridiculous luxury of today's M2, I don't expect there will be much complaining from the kids. Sometimes I am just amazed at how they can both (but especially ds) eat exactly what I eat and love it just as much. So thankful for a couple of easygoing eaters. Wow. They devoured their salads and lamb. And so grateful that eating well is just so delicious.


Tomorrow we will be out of our own house, staying at my sister's to help her out. Packing along eggs and kale for M1, salad and lamb for M2, and maybe meatballs and zucchini "noodles" for M3.

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Today's food:

M1: Coffee + coconut milk, sauteed kale and 3 eggs

M2: Apple slices + T almond butter, 1/2 avocado, 3 large strawberries

M3: Salmon; salad of lettuce, avo, cukes and tomato; roasted cauliflower

1/2 bottle GT's Trilogy Kombucha


Pretty good under the circumstances. Got in a nice 5-ish mile walk/jog while kids played in a park in the sunshine this afternoon. First day without anti-infammatory medication. Yoga and a little language learning before bed.

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I am wearing pants I could not zip a week ago.


Also, baby bok choy and scrambled eggs for M1 today. Yum.


M2: Finally finished off the leg of lamb. Sort of. One meal's worth in the fridge, with asparagus and carrots.


M3: Mystery. Grilling with a friend, but I make the salad.


Had a great run yesterday, taking a nice, easy rest today, and maybe another run tomorrow.

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Almost two weeks in and finally, this is starting to feel really normal again.


Had a hiccup a couple of days ago. I don't know what happened exactly, but it could have been that I added speedwork into a run; anyway, I got really tired and spent a whole afternoon napping. Bright side of this: I did not spend the afternoon eating sugary anything.


This weekend's challenge: heading up north for two nights at the cabin. Packing good food and hoping to avoid everything else. Realized I don't have a cooler; thinking about going out to get one.


Third time using the crock pot, made beef and veg chili yesterday afternoon while I was all over creation. So nice to come home and find food made. It's almost like having a wife, maybe. A new experience for me, as I am the wife.  ;)


A little over two weeks before Ramadan begins. I still have my meat-buying road trip to make. My son and nephew assembled the new grill; need to buy a tank of gas for it and then a pile of ribeyes would be nice. Actually, now is probably a good time to research some good, compliant grill ideas.

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