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Taking my second W30 1/30th at a time


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The fact that I can say this out loud apparently absolves me of any serious personality disorders so I don't feel bad admitting that I am two people. One is starting a second Whole30 tomorrow, the other would kill you for a 1/2 lb. of Swedish Fish. 


The idea of multiple Whole30's was discussed in the last part of It Starts With Food—the part about the near inevitability of returning to our pre-W30 ways of eating and if this was your first W30, it would probably not be your last. I agreed with 99% of the book but I completely rejected that idea at the time. 


I finished my first W30 on February 10, 2013 and was very slow to reintroduce, so my first W30 became more like a W60. So in late March I had lost 20 pounds, felt great, started my own food blog, was answering Forum questions left and right with an air of expertise neither earned or requested. But there you go...I was in my thing, in control, able to wander the aisles of Trader Joe's in perfect harmony with the Paleo-verse. Shoppers in line at Costco would comment on how healthy my food choices were...one surprised checker even commented, "I didn't even know we carried so much healthy food!". I smiled, trying not judge the shoppers on my left and right who were buying shipping containers full of crap food. "Oh...my...god,,,how can people eat like that?" I would mumble under my breath as I speed-walked passed the food court, averting my eyes and focusing on the emergency ration of almond stuffed dates and coconut water awaiting me in the car. I was Captain Paleo, able to avoid the center grocery aisles with a single bound. Suck it Whole9, I can stretch this W30 thing into W-forever. I was on...as they say in recovery circles...a pink cloud. 


Meanwhile, my brain was in some kind of hyper-sleep state, at least the parts that regulate dopamine, because sometime around the beginning of April, it woke up...not all of a sudden, oh no, that's not the way it works but slowly, via a thing called reintroduction, my food addicted self began to re-emerge. It all started out quite innocent. 


I started my reintro with dairy, sort of. I was so freaked out at the prospect of feeling crappy again I "reintroduced" dairy by unintentionally eating some non-dairy ice cream. I was delighted that I wasn't immediately doubling over with cramps until I realized I hadn't eaten anything that would cause that reaction. But, I eventually got around to it. Then wheat, and then a bit more sugar, and then foods that contained two or three reintro substances, and by mid-May I was back to the old brand of BBQ sauce and other condiments, some cheese, corn tortillas. All of these things caused some degree of discomfort at first and like any low-level toxin when first ingested or reintroduced after a good long healing spell, it starts out anomalous then slowly "feels" less acute, which is code for systemic. Death by a thousand cuts, or a million fewer beneficial gut bacteria. The first one sounds sexier. 


By June the food in my pantry is still 70-80% compliant, but the other 20-30% was slowly, eventually pushing back against the healthful effects of the majority. I was never a junk food junky— more like the guy in ISWF who eats a "pretty good diet", with a few compulsive choices thrown in, like sugar in all it's glorious manifestations—alcohol excepted. Somehow I've managed 8 years without it—go figure. Well immediate and imminent divorce would explain some of it. 


By July I had gained back half the weight I'd lost. The fitness strides I'd made since January, mainly on my bike, had all but evaporated. My idea of sports participation became been watching a soccer match on the DVR while devouring a 1/2 lb. of Sour Jelly Bellies. This is my brain on drugs. 


So it's August 31 and I've concluded that a) my default state is that of sugar addict and B) I will always want to return to some version of that person and that c) my brain has REALLY sophisticated and intricate ways of plotting to do that. It will allow me to make these healthy side trips, like W30, thank god, so I can maybe stave off permanent damage and perhaps an early death, but for some reason, nature, nurture, better or worse, that's just who I am. My brain sets the overall agenda and in the end it marches to whatever my dopamine receptors or other neurotransmitters tell it to do. So I'm basically made to crave. And part of that "disease" if you will, is an ability to convince oneself that that isn't the case. In other words, again in recover lingo, sustained denial, which explains the January-April run as Super Paleo Man. 


So this is a confession but not a concession. As long as there is a Whole30 program to fall back on, I know I can take a time out, break the pattern and do some serious and important resetting, maybe even stretch that W30 into a W-forever, as unlikely as that probably is. But on second thought, a better plan is to take another cue from recovery and take it one 1/30 of a W30 at a time. And who knows, maybe as I rack up more W30 days as a proportion of the whole, it'll get easier. I'm hopeful, but I'm retired as Captain Paleo. 


Oh and Hartwigs...you were right about the whole "not the last W30" thing. I now love 100% of your book. 

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W30 II :: DAY ONE:


My wife put it best, "So really all Whole30 is is what we normally eat minus the dairy and sugar, right? Not too bad."


Hearing it described that way made it sound a lot less daunting. As a direct result of the first W30 we did together back in jJanuary, there are no legumes, no grains, no gluten in our diet 90% of the time (100% for my wife who is intolerant and has immune issues), so really, just eliminating that occasional slice of mozzarella on fresh tomatoes with basil and balsamic will be a snap. The ice cream...the Breyer's Coffee Ice Cream...that will be harder. And the sugar. But like the book says, we can do anything for 30 days. 


Okay enough whining. It's Day 1...went to Costco, had a CSA delivery and I'm locked and loaded. 


My goals: 

1. Lose back that 10 lbs. I gained since June


2. Get on my bike at least 2x/week either on the road or the trainer


3. Walk in the morning at least 3-4x/week. 


4. Take a shower every day (work from home so sometimes it's tempting not to)


5. Discover and make 2-4 new recipes/week.


6. There are at least two family celebrations happening the next 30 days that will require some pre-planning and workarounds, including our anniversary at the very end. My goal is make it through without going off the res.


7. End each day with good sleep hygiene i.e. less iPad, more herb tea and a good (real) book. 


8. Re-activate what's now a dormant meditation practice. 


9. Stay positive, grateful and connected. 


10. Ten would be a nice round number but I can't think of another goal.

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I love number 4. I sometimes do the same...or don't do it. in my reasoning, i'm helping the environment by saving water if I don't have a shower. i'm also not putting any extra toxins on to my self (that might come from the water, or products I use, even though I mostly try and use ones without). I also save gas, and electricity. :)

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W30 :: DAY ONE Part 2:


The food part, etc. 


Meal 1: Ground beef and chicken hash with basil, spinach, onions, Garam Masala, sweet potato. 


Meal 2: HB eggs, carrot sticks w/homemade Paleo Mayo, homemade Kombucha


Meal 3: Tuna salad w/apples, cashews, Bubbies Pickle Relish, the above Mayo, w/cut up veggies and HM Ranch. Figs and a few dried apples after dinner. Herb tea before bed. 


Exercise: Put my bike on my trainer and did a HIT interval. This workout was developed in the U.K. and involves only 3 minutes/week of intense exercise on a stationary bike or treadmill.  It goes like this: 


Warm up : 2 min.


Really intense pedaling: 20 secs.


Rest: 2 mins. 


Really intense pedaling: 20 secs.


Rest: 2 mins.


Really intense pedaling: 20 secs.


Yer done, mate! Do it only 3 days/week for 4 weeks and studies have shown for some people (there's a genetic component) it's just as effective as going to the gym several days/week and killing yourself. It's harder than it sounds, but still...worth a try in addition to some other cross training. Read more about it here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-17177251


Whole 30 for the Soul: Went down to the water and photographed the sunset with my wife after dinner. Very relaxing and a nice break from the usual Sunday night TV binge. Although Breaking Bad is SO good lately. 


Also...though it might help solidify things to make a little poster out of the above list of goals and post it around the house: 


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@amberino21. You raise excellent points about the "greeness' of not showering. I guess because I work from home and have to deal with clients (thankfully not over video conference very often) I feel more "professional" being showered and dressed in something other than my sweats. So it's a perception thing. And if I happen to ride my bike on a given day, all bets are off. My cats run away and my wife will divorce me. And they should. 

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W30 II :: DAY TWO:


Nice to feel hungry again. 


Meal 1:

Woke up hungry....nice. Coffee w/coconut cream. Greek omelet with spinach, sundried tomatoes, olives, red onion, avocado.

Melon slice, figs.


Meal 2:

Honestly can't remember. Maybe the Day 3 brain fog is setting in. I know I ate something. 


Meal 3:

Burger bites with grilled onions, Coconut Aminos, guacamole. 

Artichokes with homemade smoky mayo.

TJ's broccoli salad w/fresh beets and hm vinaigrette


Exercise: Cycling. Fairly easy 12-mile up and back. Stayed in Zone 3 80% to get max fat burn. 10% Zone 4 downhill sprint. Felt great after. Coconut water and apple w/almond butter to replenish glycogen. 


W30 for the Soul: Ordered two (real) books from Amazon but still doing eBook or NYT Crossword on iPad before bed. Did have some herb tea an hour before bed.


Sleep: Woke up an hour into sleep from a family of raccoons perched on the roof outside my bedroom window. Went back to sleep in 20-30 mins. then slept until 6 am. 

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Okay maybe a little grumpy. 


Meal 1: Got into an argument with my wife and kinda skipped Meal 1. Had two HB eggs about 11am.


Meal 2: Yeah well still on a hunger strike. Had an apple and almond butter. 


Meal 3: Great salad with kale, chicory, mixed lettuces, tomatoes, avos, olives, chicken, pumpkin seeds, balsamic vinaigrette. 


Exercise: DId a 3.1 mile brisk walk to burn off some negative energy. It worked. 


W30 for the Soul: I guess make-up conversation with my wife counts. A lot of the argument was around household food policies so it was good to talk about it. 


Sleep: Pre-bedtime tea. Slept HARD and well. 


What to bring into Day 4: Eat! Eat! Eat! Don't skip meals! Eat under protest if necessary. 

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Down 3 lbs. and feeling better. No after-dinner sugar cravings. 


Meal 1: Veggie scramble. Sautéed greens. Melon and berries. 


Meal 2: Mixed green salad with chicken, olives, tomato, homemade ranch. 


Meal 3: Grilled chicken with homemade BBQ sauce, grilled sweet potato, stir-fried brussels sprouts. 


Exercise: Rest day. 


W30 for the Soul: Did take a 20 minute time out in the afternoon. Plan to start meditating in the p.m. but until my sleep gets more regular, it would end up as a nap, which is fine, but I'd like to give myself a fighting chance at a good sitting, even for 10 minutes to start out. 


Sleep: Went to bed at 11:00, slept through until 7:00 a.m. Brilliant. 


What to bring to Day 5: Yesterday's W30 Daily about sugar cravings. Some great strategies about what to do when they occur, like drink water, take a nap, count.


Reminds me of a technique my Dad taught me back in the 70's to quit smoking. Time the cravings. The longer one is abstinent the shorter and further apart the cravings get. This is true when trying to abstain from almost any addictive substance or behavior. If As duration and frequency decrease, confidence and a feeling of control increase, which is positive feedback. 


It's a kind of mindfulness practice. Instead of gutting through cravings, you embrace them, note and time them without judgment, and thus gain some power and control over them without force. Just by realizing that "this craving I'm having will be shorter than the previous one" and "this break between cravings will be longer than the last one", you relax a little more with every craving. You almost crave the cravings just to feel a sense of being able to manage, for a change.


This technique helped me quit a 2-pack/day tobacco habit. I'm not sure why but I've never tried this with sugar cravings. I just wish I could have seen my Dad's face when I told him he'd developed a very Zen-like approach to addiction recovery. 

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Wow. What happened to my energy? Slept well the night before so I was surprised when I suddenly felt like a deflated balloon around 4. 


Meal 1: Veggie hash w/sweet potato, zucchini, onion, chicken-apple sausage, berries


Meal 2: Deviled eggs with lime and avocado. Yerba matte. 


Meal 3: Sweet potato and coconut soup with chicken


Exercise: 3.1 mile walk (had to pry myself out if the house but I made it)


W30 for the Soul: Absolutely zapped in the p.m. so took a 20 min. nap around 4 p.m. Nice. Also started 2 fresh couple of batches of Kombucha.


What to bring to Day 6: Go with the flow, energy-wise. If it feels good to lay down and just decompress for a while, do it. Getting back to fat-burning mode is a zig-zaggy process. 

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Just popped by. A couple things: how would you know you dropped 3 lbs already? :) I encourage you to hide the scale until day 31.  


Also, looking at yesterday's menu, your meals look small - perhaps that could account for the energy lull? Make sure you're following the template, especially portion-size wise, on all your meals. 

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@GFChris: Busted! My curiosity got the better of me. Scale is going away. 


As for portion sizes, I think I'm overcompensating for the overfilling and over-consuming that was starting to happen before this latest W30. It's partly what motivated it. Thanks for the reminder to eat. It's a paradigm shift. 


W30 2.0: DAY 6:


Meal 1: Eggs and veggies scramble. Chicken sausage. 


Meal 2: Organic Hot Dog lettuce wraps (3). Sliced apple. 


Meal 3: GF Burgers w/grilled onions. Grilled artichokes. 


Snack: Dried apples w/almonds. 


Exercise: Nada. Plans to ride fell through. 


W30 for the Soul: Got my real books from Amazon for pre-bedtime ritual. Took a break to crack one open in the afternoon and before bed, so ended up going to bed an hour earlier to consciously wind down with tea and without devices. Slept okay hours-wise, but woke up frequently. 


What to bring to Day 7: Plan meals for next week and shop this weekend. Need some new recipes. 

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W30 2.0::DAY 7:


Meal 1: Leftover burgers in veggie scramble w/eggs


Meal 2: HB eggs, veggies and HM ranch dip


Meal 3: Shepherd's Pie with gr. turkey


Exercise: 3.1 mile walk (need new walking shoes) 


W30 for the Soul:Took a nap in the p.m.. Did meal planning, shopping for the week. 


What to bring to Day 8: Hang in there. 

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W30 2.0:: DAY 8:


Bit of a struggle these last few days. The novelty has definitely worn off and now it feels kinda sloggish. I know that will improve.


Meal 1: Leftover Shepherd's Pie, apple


Meal 2: Tuna salad on kale, chicory, mixed greens with HM Mayo. 


Meal 3: Crockpot shredded chicken w/avocado HM salsa, sauteed zucchini. 


Exercise: Rest day


W30 for the Soul: Did lots of reading, sketching, thinking, daydreaming today. Prepped some foods for this week. 


Sleep: Improving but still spotty. Did try a hot shower before going to bed, tea and reading. Have taped off all the electronic lights in the bedroom. 


What to bring to Day 9: Eat, eat, eat. 

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 9


Meal 1: My wife named this the Meta Omelette: chicken inside eggs. Get it?  (It's really just leftover pulled chicken in an omelette w/salsa but the cool name makes it even yummier...and way more hipster)


Meal 2: LotsaLeftoversLunch (Shepherd's pie, more shredded chicken, a stray GF hotdog. This meal looked a lot worse than it tasted. Mostly. 


Meal 3: Unintentionally Oven baked chicken. After marinading some chicken breasts for 24 hrs. in a lime-chile marinade, for some reason when I popped it onto the grill it caused a rather large flare-up (maybe owing to my not having cleaned the grill's spill pan in a while). So while the chicken got seared nicely, I had to abort the rest of the grilling session and finish the chicken in the oven. Also transferred the 6 foil-wrapped sweet potatoes I had intended to cook on the grill into the oven, and roasted some zucchini which my wife looked at and commented, "Yummm...grilled banana slugs." I beg to differ. 


Exercise: I hear some people do. Actually there's a dirty air advisory due to a major brush fire so I'm laying low. 


W30 for the Soul: Dumped my current CSA and re-upped with Planet Organics, which we had for years, then had to stop. Long story but happy to be back. First delivery on Thursday, otherwise known as Day 12. 


Sleep: Meh. Had a wicked nightmare about an hour after going to sleep that my bed was eating me. Maybe reading suspenseful fiction after watching Dexter on the DVR isn't so good for the sleep hygiene. Yawn. 


What to bring to Day 10: Clean the damn grill!!

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 10:


Meal 1: Leftover Inferno chicken from yesterday, sliced on a bed of sautéed kale with a sliced tomato.


Meal 2: Baked sweet potato, 2 HB eggs, 1/2 avocado


Meal 3: Pan seared pork chops with unsweetened applesauce, SF bacon and steamed broccoli with HM mayo, sweet potato mash. 


Exercise: Nope. Damn. 


W30 for the Soul: Got first shipment of meat from U.S. Wellness (from whence the Meal 3 pork chops came). Something soul satisfying in eating meat that's been raised humanely. Can't explain it. Cleaned out garage/workout area. Bottled my Kombucha. 


Sleep: Like...a baby. No dreams of man eating furniture. 


What to bring to Day 10: Today's W30 Daily is about exercise. Would like to walk and/or do a little kettle bell workout. 




Thought since I'm more than a quarter the way through, it would good to assess progress against goals. A Quarterly Report of sorts.


Goal 1: Kinda started off on the wrong foot in W30 2.0 by placing too much emphasis on weight loss. Moderator @GFCHRIS gently pointed this out, so instead of worrying over losing the weight, I lost the scale. 


Goal 2: A bit behind on this (only ridden once so far). I blame my training partner who's been away on business. ;) Will add kettle bell in there, too. 


Goal 3: Doing more walking so doing pretty well with the walking. 


Goal 4: Pretty much becoming a habit. 


Goal 5: At least. 


Goal 6: Only Family event so far was canceled, so no chance to test. But...anniversary coming up on Day 28. Stay tuned. 


Goal 7: MUCH better, although eating W30 alone almost guarantees better sleep eventually. Finding that no iPad, earlier trun in time and a good (paper) book, hot shower and/or hot tea cools the jets nicely. 


Goal 8: Honestly, haven't actually tried to meditate BUT accidentally got in a good sitting one day while trying to nap. I really do value this but have a hard time executing. There's a great quote out there that I will now butcher, but that goes something like: "All the problems of the world come down to the inability of one man to sit alone in a quiet room", or words to that effect. Take the "man" out and replace it with "person" and we got some truth happening here. 


Goal 9: Not bad. A few down moments, typical while detoxing. generally, between these updates, the W30 Daily, some "gratitude" breaks, doing pretty well. Being positive = not my default state. 


Goal 10: I love these hippie-dippie sentiments from the 70's. No, really, I do. Sometimes there's hard truth in the woo-woo. Bottom line is I can't say I'm exactly "enjoying" the process yet, but that's because my brain still wants sugar. Especially after dinner. Funny story though...last night my cat Eddy crawled onto my lap for an epic snooze session that lasted well into my usual crave and beyond. I didn't have the heart to move him so I just kinda went with it and before I knew it, the craving was over, just like my dad said it would be (see Day 1) So...all of you post-dinner sugar-a-holics, take one lap cat, call me tomorrow. 


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W30 2.0 :: DAY 11:


Meal 1: I admit it...I broke down and made a smoothie. I had deadlines in the morning, it was either that or Meal 1 turns into Meal 2. Used homemade almond milk, spinach, egg white protein, 1 tbsp. almond butter, frozen berries, frozen banana. 


Meal 2: Slice chicken breast on a bed of sautéed kale with salsa, half avocado. 


Snack: U.S. Wellness beef stick. Cashews. 


Meal 3: Beef and greens soup with veggies. Used the slow roasted GF shredded beef from U.S. Wellness. 


Exercise: Nada. 


W30 for the Soul: Napped in the afternoon. 


Sleep: Great. Woke up once but otherwise solid sleep. 


What to bring to Day 12: Must. Exercise. Too much time at the computer. It'll be a challenge in the foreseeable future with workload increasing. 

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 12:


This was not an altogether great day. Feeling better energy-wise but letting my work dictate my eating/exercise or lack of it. 


Meal 1: Got a little frisky and made some banana pancakes because I was so curious to see what would happen if I just mashed up a banana and threw in a couple eggs. No coconut flours. If kept dollar-sized they performed well and are flippable. Served with unsweetened apple sauce and unsweetened bacon ends from U.S. Wellness, they were surprisingly tasty. So the question is, do they conjure up feelings of Sunday mornings, my father-in-law's sourdough pancakes, maple syrup, in other words, a relationship with the pancake-as-delivery-system-for-sugar? As it turns out not so much but think I'll save this recipe for Post W30 just to be safe. 


Meal 2: Forgot to eat. Not sure how...I work 20 feet from my kitchen but there you go. 4:00 rolls around, I'm starving and have to go out. Grab a Larabar and some coconut water. Piss poor substitute for a real meal and I need to do better. 


Meal 3: GF ground beef, coconut milk, veggies, curry. 


Exercise: Again. best laid plans....crap. Now my back is hurting from too much time in front of the computer. 


W30 for the Soul: New CSA dropped off veggies today. Much better quality, friendly driver, broad daylight. 


Sleep: Fitful. Lots on my mind and didn't have an epic food day so some concerns there. 


What to bring to Day 13: Priorities, priorities. Back to basics...remember why we're doing this. Keep an eye on coffee intake. For some reason I notice the caffeine a lot more on W30 and increased irritability around mid-morning. My wife and I had an epic argument about fonts that I'm sure was partly fueled by Organic French Roast. 

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 13:


Shopping isn't hard at this point. I'm focused and determined to finish this. I'm curious because it was about halfway through last W30 that the tide really started to turn in terms of feeling better, more energy, ease of cooking and meal planning, so much so that reintroduction became a daunting prospect around Day 25 and I considered doing a W60 to avoid the inevitable side effects. 


Meal 1:

Leftover curried veggies and ground beef mixed with 3 scrambled eggs. Chicken apple sausage. 


Meal 2:

Meal 1 upset my stomach for some reason so backed off Meal 2 and just had a glass of Kombucha to try and settle things and a few kale chips.


Meal 3:

Leftover shredded beef and kale soup/stew. 


Exercise: a bit of cardio in the afternoon. 


W30 for the Soul: Sounds a little silly and shallow but I finally replaced my favorite prescription sunglasses which I lost about a year ago. Not cheap but this makes me happy. 


Sleep: Shut off the ceiling display LED  alarm clock and all little lights emanating from any device to make the room as dark as possible. Read before bed. Slept like a wee babe. 

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 14:


Nearly half way and in general pretty optimistic. Although having one W30 in the bag changes my perspective, I'm noticing, because I know how reintroduction can slowly morph into a kind of Paleo + sugar eating pattern. Paleose, if you will. So not much dairy, no grains, no legumes (none of that a problem) but back to going nuts on sugar. Oy. 


My wife and I talked about doing a W60 this time, to further ingrain healthy patterns. We both agree that our default post W30 eating regimen shouldn't include added sugar AT ALL, and that hers should be more like AIP. And all that makes me a little sad. That this where we find ourselves—me addicted to sugar, my wife's immune system so bolloxed up that it rejects so many otherwise nutritious substances. It's way too much importance given to too elemental a thing. 


The inescapable truth of the matter is that none of really matters a whole hell of a lot...it's only food! And I wonder sometimes if food was just...food? You know, sustenance, with a small s. Instead of occupying SO much friggin' time i.e. planning and gathering and preparing and logging and writing about and craving and resisting and thinking about. And what if almost anything else replaced it as more important? So relegated back to where it probably belongs on the scale of life-critical things—which sure, is high enough because it's fuel for living and doing ALL THE OTHER THINGS that are more important, but really...why can't it be like other normal bodily functions? We get hungry, we eat food, we become satisfied and we move on. No huge deal. No big production, no hours on a Sunday preparing chicken breasts and cutting up vegetables, or maybe so, but what if it was more, I don't know, minute...insignificant...routine? Think of how much time would be reinserted into our lives. 


Sometimes trying to change my relationship with food points up the inherent silliness in even having one. And just how much time and emotional energy I invest in it. There is even psychological terminology now describing one's fear of food...cibophobia. Conversely, there is the fetishization of food (new word...you're welcome) why should any of us 'love" food so much so much as to become "foodies"? I'm a member of the San Francisco Professional Food Society, and it strikes me as supremely odd that there even is such a thing. Why not a San Francisco Professional Breathing Society? (Okay I should probably check Google to make sure there isn't one...it is San Francisco.) 


I'm sure there are individuals for whom food is more of a necessary nuisance. They eat, just enough when they get hungry, and don't sweat it otherwise. Shopping, cooking, is simply a chore along with cleaning the toilets and taking out the trash. Food in, food out. Same with eating...food in, food out...much more interesting things to do with one's time. Do more novels and great ideas come from these people? A big part of me wishes I could be like that. But no, I spend about 30 minutes/day actually eating food and 3 or 4 hours of preparing for it. Then writing it all down, reading what other people think, photographing it, ordering more of it online, refrigerating and putting it in containers, which I then worry about and weight the relative safety of. 


So I've just spent 30 minutes writing this, I will probably go to the Farmer's Market today and then to gro sto for a few things to round out this week's menu, then grill chicken breasts and cut up vegetables. Between all that and meal planning, making three meals, cleaning up afterwards, that's pretty much my Sunday. I can justify all of it but it does seem a little silly, or worse highly co-dependant. How has it come to this, this modern version of hunting and gathering? Maybe instead of just changing our relationship with food it might be better to radically downplay it as well. Somehow. Now I'm hungry. 


Sorry for the random editorial. Just thinking out loud. 


Meal 1:

Scrambled eggs w/veggies and chicken-apple sausage.Avocado. 


Meal 2:

Pre-workout smoothie with kale, coconut water, egg white protein, frozen banana.


Meal 3:

Welsh Beef Soup made with pressure cooker beef stock made the day before. Green Salad w/ pears, blueberries, toasted sliced almonds and raisins, avocado on the side, citrus vinaigrette. 


Exercise: Finally got back on my bike. Did a 18-mile up and back, hilly route. 


W30 for the Soul: Managed to fit in time at the computer working on an illustration with getting out to exercise—a difficult feat lately but proof it can be done. 


Sleep: Lousy basically. Sometimes exercise makes it harder to sleep. Add to that the damn dog across the street barking at everything that moves at all hours! Sorry...having a Clint Eastwood moment. 


What to bring to Day 15: Will try to work in a kettlebell workout today. I need to make a giant blinking sign and hang it over my workstation that says, "MOVE OR DIE". 

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W30 2.0 :: DAY 15:


So...Tiger Blood. Wherefore art thou? Not here yet. I definitely feel better than pre-W30 but battling a little depression the last few days, which is an energy suck, I'm sure. 


Can't quite stop thinking about the possible reality that I might be on a non-stop roller coaster my whole life—going from W30/Paleo self-care, to self-destructive eating, gradual but eventual return to addictive patterns, then back on the Health Train for a while, then back off...ad frickin' infinitum. 


Dopamine...you are a jealous mistress. 


Meal 1:

Scrambled eggs w/onion and bacon. Heirloom tomato salad w/fresh basil. 


Meal 2:

Fruit and veggie plate w/mayo dip. 


Meal 3:

Leftover Welsh Beef Soup. 


Exercise: Nope. Got sucked into the vortex. Maybe "Tiger Blood" will take over soon and get me out the door more often. 


W30 for the Soul: I reserve this section to mention anything that might contribute to the W30 experience in way that's more unquantifiable, so I guess taking most of a day to work on a food-related illustration qualifies. 


Sleep: Again, not great. Not sure why, just can't purge the brain cells some nights. 


What to bring to Day 16: Have a tentative plan to ride with my nephew this afternoon. Need to go out regardless, though. 

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W30 2.0: DAY 16:


Time flies when you're having fun. 


Meal 1: Scrambled eggs (yes, again), chicken apple sausage, sliced tomato. 


Meal 2: Leftover Welsh Beef Soup. 


Meal 3: Crab Cakes from Non Nom. Served on a bed of greens with Avocado-Basil dressing, bacon pieces, balsamic tomatoes. This recipe is a keeper. 


Exercise: 18-mile ride with my nephew. Nice little up and back but ready to up the distance. Haven't wanted wanted to push until I'm sure fat's the primary fuel. Tried bringing almond-stuffed dates as a ride snack. Really good! 


Sleep: Eh. Not great by any means but I like the whole "up at just after dawn" habit I'm developing. Gives me plenty of time to do this before work. Just have to remember that around 2 or 3, I've been at my computer for 7, 8 hours. 


W30 for the Soul: All this focusing of food relationships makes it hard not to make art around it. What's coming out is kinda dark, though. Obviously some issues around control, the cynicism of "big food" and the SAD, my own tendency toward addictive behavior. 


What to bring to Day 17: Trust the process. Remember that by the end of W30 1.0 it seemed like the most "normal" way to eat/live and anything less seemed like the aberration. Interesting that I'm about halfway through and feeling pulled in two opposite directions. 

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W30 2.0: DAY 17:


First real test of resolve. Passed. Done and done. 


Meal 1: Scrambled eggs (yes, again), sautéed Kale, chicken apple sausage. 


Meal 2: ?? 


Meal 3: Grilled Best Chicken You've Ever Eaten from Melissa Joulwan. Green salad with a little EVOO & balsamic. Brought the chicken to my daughter's house for dinner wherein there were other tasty treats that I had to forego, the most alluring of which was plain old rice, which smelled terrific coming from the rice cooker. This chicken recipe is great, though, and special enough that it helped offset the lure of the forbidden. 


Exercise: Noop. Today, though. 


Sleep: Like crap. Frickin' dogs across the street went off at 4 a.m. Feel groggy this morning. 


W30 for the Soul: Sometimes you just need to show up. My wife had a headache and stayed home but I packed a Paleo Road Kit and headed off to my daughter's house for dinner anyway, and survived the first real test of this W30. Confidence is high after these moments. Forgot to bring salad dressing and was tempted to use their bottled balsamic with a little added sugar, but opted to make my own. Small victory. 


What to bring to Day 17: Got on Zen Habits.com and the lead post was very apropos. About the correlation between expectations and suffering. We expect to be able to sleep through a night without dogs barking but the reality is that dogs sometimes bark. We suffer more from the disappointment than the loss of sleep. Makes me smile when I think I of it like that. 

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W30 2.0: DAY 18:


First real test of resolve. Passed. Done and done. 


Meal 1: Leftover chicken breast with eggs and veggies. 


Meal 2: Kale salad. 


Meal 3: Grilled pork chops with applesauce, roasted broccoli and carrots, baked sweet potato. 


Exercise: Walked my 3.1 mile loop. 


Sleep: Will talk to neighbors today about their dogs. Resorted to wax earplugs last night and managed some sleep. 


W30 for the Soul: Cortisol levels were probably off the charts yesterday. Stress increasing as deadlines approach, a few clients freaking our or off the radar and no sleep the night before. Is it just me or is the world just too damn noisy? I really need to find some kind of sanctuary I can retreat to away from the barking dogs, leaf blowers, trains, sirens, et al. 


What to bring to Day 19: More acceptance., gratitude. Eat more food! Second meals are proving to be really hard this time around. 

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W30 2.0: DAY 19:


First real test of resolve. Passed. Done and done. 


Meal 1: Sautéed Brussel Sprouts, zucchini and onions, fried eggs. Green smoothie with spinach, egg white protein, coconut water, frozen banana. 


Meal 2:  Meal 1 (late) ran into Meal 3 (early)


Meal 3: Grilled U.S. Wellness burgers with coconut aminos and garlic powder w/grilled onions, guac and sautéed mushrooms. Roasted cauliflower. 


Exercise: Nope. Deadlines all day. 


Sleep: Dogs are still a problem but the neighbors are apparently on vacation (probably why the dogs are insane). Earplugs are helping but still not adequate. Grrr...


W30 for the Soul: Put finishing touches on a new illustration. 


What to bring to Day 20: Need to gear up for a few uncomfortable confrontations today. Remember to breathe, remember to keep other's self-respect in tact.  

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W30 2.0: DAY 20:


Turned out to be something of a Clint Eastwood "You kids stay off my lawn" kinda day. (sigh)


Meal 1: Sausage and leftover roasted cauliflower 


Meal 2: Almonds and dates, Kombucha. Not enough. 


Meal 3: Chicken curry on sautéed greens


Exercise: Nope. 


Sleep: Horrible. It's complicated but I maybe got 4 hours of fitful sleep. I could go into a pretty enthusiastic rant right now about the pervasiveness of ambient noise and how my fellow humans have almost completely lost respect for the idea of quiet as a boundary issue...that between garbage trucks and leaf blowers and barking dogs and train horns at 2 a.m. and subwoofers and un-mufflered motorcycles and (worst of all) people who walk down my street talking on their phones at 6 a.m. oblivious to the world around them...that the world has become an impossibly stressful place and no wonder everyone is sleep deprived and eating their feelings and sucking down Zoloft and buying guns and would rather text than talk and eats crap to comfort themselves because we all live in a culture that's just impossibly too...frickin'...loud...and everyone needs to just keep it down...


...but I won't. I'm too tired. 


W30 for the Soul: Any spiritual progress was replaced by a Big Gulp serving of cortisol. 


What to bring to Day 21: It's kinda cloudy and rainy today and I feel like being out in it. Maybe a nap then a hike. I know a few trees that need hugging. Patience. Humor. Kindness. Ear plugs. 

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