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Day 30 something.

Mrs Kitchen

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April 24th was Day 30 for me.


Didn't have momentous change although I am in full throttle allergy season, most, though not all of my seasonal allergy symptoms are not rearing up.  For some reason, this year, my eyes are the primary symptom - starting in February, while I was on an extended visit in CA, I needed to put in allergy eye drops.  And about 10 days ago I needed to start using the eye drops back home in CO, as spring allergens popped up and left my eyes itchy & crusty. Normally, I would be popping allergy pills to combat drippy nose, achy body AND itchy eyes.  This season, it's just the eyes - even with the Whole 30.  Not sure what credit my eating plan gets.


I started on Whole30 primarily to see if the change in eating would help jump start weight loss.  I am in my late 50's (I wanted to say mid-50's, but that is a stretch).  For the past few years, I have tried to lose weight with diet & exercise (good old WW).  I would follow the WW plan, log my food, hike up mountains and attend group exercise classes and not lose weight.  It would literally take 4 months to lose 4 pounds. I would have WW leaders review my food logs (after insisting I must not be following the plan).  They would critique my food - too many easy fix "solutions" like energy bars and not enough dairy - but otherwise they would agree, I WAS following the plan.  After a few seasons of this - I decided to throw in the towel and eat what I wanted.  Of course, I gained weight.  I never go past a certain point in my weight gain.  I am 5 feet tall - and in February, after breaking my foot, being in CA for an extended period dealing with a family emergency (and eating through my stress with sugar - practically injecting it in my veins with binge eating of packages of candy and feeling sick afterwards) - I returned to CO about 7 lbs up from the beginning of the year.  I weighed 144.something when I was weighed at the orthopedic surgeons office when I was finally fitted with a walking boot for my broken foot.  No more hikes (which are always dicey in the winter anyway), no more group aerobics classes and no more long walks.  I WAS allowed to ride a stationery bike - so I joined the local YMCA to have access.


I would sit for an hour at a time on the damn recumbent bike, watching the built in TV, or catch up on FB on my ancient iPhone.  


Finally, I got clearance to get moving more - and scheduled an orientation to get started on the selectorized weight equipment.  By then my weight had dropped 2 lbs - this was the 3rd week in March.  I was just eating - not for weight loss, but my stress was under control, so I wasn't using food as an emotional release.  Somewhere in mid-March, I had come across Whole30 on FB.  I looked at the requirements and the take-no-prisoners expectations on the food.  I had another trip to CA already scheduled for early April, so initially I planned to start Whole30 immediately after I returned from this trip.  I also had my 20 year old only child returning from a semester abroad in April.  She would only be home for 3 weeks before departing for her summer job in Hawaii.  I didn't want to miss out on food as celebration during the few short weeks she would be around.  (Why not pass on the dysfunction of the tradition of "food as celebration" to my daughter - just as my father did for me?).  


Somewhere in March, as I was able to be more active, I decided to just start.  I browsed the Whole9 and Whole30 websites.  I bought "It Starts with Food" at Amazon - and somehow ended up with 2 copies (both charged to my credit card - but that is another story).  I browsed the book.  I didn't read it cover to cover.  I realized that if I started soon - I could be done by the time my daughter arrived home on April 24th.  I signed up for the daily emails.  I printed all the getting started hand outs.  I went to the store to buy pantry items.  I hadn't read enough to know which ones I would be using and which ones I would never use.


I bought milled almond flour, organic ghee, boxed chopped tomatoes, coconut oil, unsweetened coconut flakes, eggs, meat, asparagus, apples, lettuce.  My pantry was already stocked with a few other appropriate items that didn't include hidden sugars.  I read labels.  If the contents weren't obviously clean, unadulterated food, I didn't buy it. t cleaned out my go-to items (they are still in a large shopping bag in the bottom of my pantry - growing stale, were it not for the preservatives).  


My husband was informed of my plans the day before.  I explained that I might not be able to go out to dinner to celebrate his 60th birthday on his birthday (but that I would be done with the 30 days within the week and maybe we could have a post birthday celebratory dinner out) I started the program March 24.  I had 5 meals that day.  I was up early to boil eggs, grill chicken, prep food so that I had something appropriate to reach for when I was hungry.  I had fruit at 3 meals.  It wasn't pretty.


It wasn't perfect - but it was perfect as far as the content of the food.  I received my daily email. 


I gave up some of my daily time wasters because I needed that time to prep food.  I went back to the book looking for ideas for meal planning.  I tried new ways of eating.  I ate more eggs that I had ever eaten in my life.  Previously, I ate eggs when I went out for breakfast.  I rarely cooked them.  it's hard to screw up cooking eggs - but I did.  Because I had to spend so much time doing food prep and because sometimes I need to be at work really early - leaving the house before 6am, I ended up eating eggs on the run, as I drove to work.  One ugly morning, I had scrambled my eggs to a point that they were not very palatable.  I was on the run, driving to work in the dark.  I remember literally choking down the last few bites of overcooked scrambled eggs, trying to hold back the gag factor.  It was grim.


I read more of the book.  I packed for that trip to CA in early April.  I wasn't sure exactly how it was gong to work out.  I got to CA and it was too late to go to the store for supplies for the morning.  I perused my options in the kitchen where I was staying.  There were some options to tide me over so that I could have meal one in my stomach before I figured out the rest.  I explained to my brother, sister-in-law & elderly mother what I was up to.  They were curious but accepting.  I went to the store and shopped.  I cooked.  some of it was weird to me - but I was satisfied.


I was being successful. I wasn't sure how I felt about it.  Following many meals, after I had finished what i had prepared, my stomach was full.  But I was still wanting.  I was missing something.  I was missing the emotional reward I got from some foods.  In my head, I called it the "party" food.  It was like that old Peggy Lee song.  When I was done, I would think, "is that ll there is?".  But it was.  I knew that I was supposed to be learning a new relationship with food.


To be continued.

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