Small Victories: One day at a time


tangerine

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Day 4! So I had to have a meeting at a terrific patisserie that just opened in town. I was anxious about it - before I started my Whole 30, I had sampled the croissants, chocolate cake and Madeleines there and they were amazing.

 

I went in and the smell of butter and warm sugar hit me. I nearly caved at the cashier --- there were beautiful baked goods under glass domed cake plates and clear glass cookie jars right up there, artfully displayed to catch your attention and seduce you.  ;)

 

But, I went ahead and ordered my large Americano, (hold the sugar), sat at my meeting and focused on the job at hand. I stayed there for 2 hours and didn't think about it again. :)

 

Maybe that's a little thing or nothing at all. But I'd like to think these little wins add up. Hopefully towards a great big win on Day 30.

 

Best of luck to everybody --- and hope you all have victories big and small on this journey.

 

Post you daily triumphs here!

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Thanks Krista and ladyshanny! I'm glad you saw it as a 'win'. It felt like one. Not the Superbowl, but a win nonetheless.  :)

 

DAY 5 -  The week is ending and my fresh produce supply is dwindling. Looked through the fridge, realized I'd gone through the broccoli, the cauliflower, the carrots, the sweet potatoes , the lettuce and tomatoes.

              Then I remembered there was a pack of frozen brussel sprouts in the freezer. Scary. I don't like brussel sprouts. Those were bought  though, precisely because I wanted to try and see if could learn to like them. They were so readily available and convenient, and I wanted to have frozen veg in the freezer for the days I wouldn't have time to go to the market. Otherwise, there's just too many corn-carrot-lima bean mixes out there which isn't an alternative.  I needed some veg on my plate to accompany the lonely beef burger with onions and mushrooms.  So, I repeated to myself what I said said before when I bought them ----  going on the Whole 30 is all about pushing the envelope a little, getting out of my comfort zone ( read: white rice,spaghetti and potato chips!)  and trying new ways to eat. That means looking at food in a different light, including the dreaded brussel sprouts.  So, I looked through Pinterest until I found an appealing and easy recipe. 

               The small win for the day:  I roasted them with a slick of olive oil, seasoned with sea salt and dipped them in Whole 30 compliant aioli. The result is, me and brussel sprouts are no longer enemies. Okay,  we're not best friends.  But I'm happy I can still try new things at my age and learn to see things another way. 

 

               Here's to a change in perspective for everyone, for the better.  :)

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DAY 6 - Grocery-shopping challenge!  Labels, labels, labels. I've never liked dealing with labels before. Now Whole 30 is making me. 

 

             A little background. I've been on a weight loss journey which started November 2013. In a year and 3 months ( with a some plateaus in between), I've shed 45 lbs. with mostly what can be called a "low carb" approach and regular workouts. I swim most days, hit the gym once or twice a week, or take long brisk walks when weather permits. It's been slow-going and steady, but I've felt good. My doctor says I am 10-14 lbs away from achieving a "normal" weight for my height and bone structure; as well as a healthy BMI. And though I've learned to cook and eat out less, make relatively better food and portion choices than before, I've never really taken the time to study the science and nutrition of it all. I didn't pay much attention to ingredients in food. And though I don't eat a lot of convenience foods anymore, I still had a few things in my pantry that made life "easier" but not necessarily healthier:  pre-made mixes and rubs for food prep that have sugar added; jarred spaghetti sauce with ingredients I don't necessarily understand; store-bought mayo; etc.

 

I'm doing Whole 30 for the first time because I want to really fine-tune my whole relationship with food, make confident healthy meal choices whether I am travelling or on holiday or eating out with family and friends;  and really deal with issues like intense cravings for "something sweet" after dinner. Also,I want to get rid of the last of my hypertension and diabetes maintenance meds. I've cut those in half already since the weight loss but I'd really like to go down to ZERO meds at the end of the year. AND, I want to get over my intimidation at food-shopping. Labels intimidate me. I just get confused --- or BORED --- by them.

 

So today I made a shopping list. I got organized for my meal plan next week. And at the grocery store, I (sigh) took the time to read labels. On some canned diced tomatoes. On the fish sauce. On some herb-and-seasoning mixes ( yeah, I still like these! ). I rejected some old staples. I found some interesting alternatives. I'm apparently going to attempt making my own mayo now. 

 

So today's small win: I didn't chuck anything into the cart with just the faint glimmer of a hope that it would be okay, I actually knew ( to the best of my abilities anyway) that nothing in there wasn't Whole 30 compliant.  Okay, so it took me longer in the aisles. I ran a bit late for an appointment after. 

 

But with some practice I hope to get these healthy habits down to pat. Hoping the same for all you fellow Whole 30 first-timers!  :)

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Day 7 - This was hard. My husband and I went out to the movies with friends. I didn't anticipate it well enough and should have brought my own snacks - like maybe some macadamias or something. The smell of buttered popcorn made me miserable. I love buttered popcorn and I didn't realize that the association with the enjoyment of the movies is so strong!

I didn't make a big deal out of it when my husband bought some, he's been very supportive and I don't want him to curtail his own enjoyment of certain things just because I can't have it. Have to admit though I was a teeny bit resentful. Had to concentrate for 15 minutes into the movie because I just kept thinking of what I couldn't have.

In the end I didn't have any, which is a win I guess. It's the first time though that I felt deprived. Again, there was something in my head that kept saying, "You're at the movies, where's your popcorn????" But maybe that's not a good enough reason to have it. So I didn't. 

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Day 8 -  The weather has become a bit nicer this week. I wanted to take a trip to the butcher so instead of taking the car, I walked there. It takes 30 minutes through pleasant neighborhoods and there's plenty to see  shop windows and cafes. I brought my backpack to carry supplies back. Altogether that was 60 minutes of walking, and I generally felt stronger and quicker. Could be my new Nikes. Or could be that it's Day 8. Whatever it is, it was a good day.

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I didn't make a big deal out of it when my husband bought some, he's been very supportive and I don't want him to curtail his own enjoyment of certain things just because I can't have it. 

Slight correction/mindshift adjustment for future reference, should you need it:

 

". . .just because I've chosen not to have it for 30 days."

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Slight correction/mindshift adjustment for future reference, should you need it:

 

". . .just because I've chosen not to have it for 30 days."

 

Thanks for that, it does make a difference. I'll remember that next time I'm feeling "deprived" and  or "can't have" something.  :)

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Day 9 -   I have always had a tendency to be a "big eater" so  I was surprised that for 2 nights in a row, I've just felt fuller faster.  Instead of 2 portions of chicken, I felt quite satisfied with one. I was even more surprised that I felt fine after half of my usual steak portion. I don't often hear my body's natural cues, it's been a long time since I've known what those are. For a long time now, I've always had to employ "mind over matter" tactics to not overeat. I know the point of Whole 30 isn't to just eat less.But it's a pleasant surprise to recognize that it's my body telling me "that's enough, you're okay."   ^_^

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Day 10- I know I'm not supposed to focus on the weight loss but I wish the needle on the scale would budge a little to the left! It's 10 days now and I had hoped to drop at least 1kg (2.2 lb) by now. It would be so encouraging at this stage. The doctors have emphasized that as a diabetic with a family history of heart disease, it is imperative that I get to the "normal" weight and BMI range for my height to manage my health effectively. After a year, I am 12 lbs away from that goal. I am hoping that sticking to Whole 30 can bring in all those health benefits - including getting on the road to weight loss. ( I've been on a plateau now for 2 months before starting this.)

No actual victory today. Just that I've decided to soldier on.

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Day 12 - it took a bit of time for me to notice a difference but I just realized that my energy levels are great, I feel just that bit stronger at the gym and a little faster doing my laps at the pool. Not breaking any Olympic records, but I feel more efficient somehow. I also know getting myself to the gym/pool is less of a struggle because I'm feeling less sluggish in the mornings - and to me, that's half the battle! ;)

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Day 14 -  Happy Easter! And eggs are on my mind. I've been missing mayo but of course, the jarred kind comes with sugar and other no-no's. So I made Nom Nom Paleo's version for the first time ever. I used to think only chefs  and gourmets made their own mayo.  But apparently, so do I.  ;) 

 

Small pat on the back for extra kitchen skill and being able to break out of the menu rut with some curried chicken salad  and  aioli for the fish soup. 

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Day 17 - Blood sugar levels are nice and normal. AM sluggishness still in check. No cravings for sugar. Able to politely refuse cookie at tea, and explain ( at least I think I did ) Whole 30 to the curious group on hand who wanted to know who could refuse a cookie everyone was raving about.

 

No strange questions or judgments, just genuine curiosity. There was the usual nervous laughter about the program not permitting the consumption of wine for its duration,  but all in all it was a good encounter. I didn't want to sound overly virtuous when I talked about it. But I also wanted to be able to present it well, and say that it does feel good to be genuinely conscientious about what I put in my body for once. I'm honest when I say it can be challenging, but that it just requires plenty of planning ahead and cooking for yourself. A non-kitchen person in the group balked at that, but well, it's not like I was trying to convert everybody. ;)

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Day 17 - Blood sugar levels are nice and normal. AM sluggishness still in check. No cravings for sugar. Able to politely refuse cookie at tea, and explain ( at least I think I did ) Whole 30 to the curious group on hand who wanted to know who could refuse a cookie everyone was raving about.

 

No strange questions or judgments, just genuine curiosity. There was the usual nervous laughter about the program not permitting the consumption of wine for its duration,  but all in all it was a good encounter. I didn't want to sound overly virtuous when I talked about it. But I also wanted to be able to present it well, and say that it does feel good to be genuinely conscientious about what I put in my body for once. I'm honest when I say it can be challenging, but that it just requires plenty of planning ahead and cooking for yourself. A none-kitchen person in the group balked at that, but well, it's not like I was trying to convert everybody. ;)

Sounds like you handled the conversation perfectly, nice job!

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Day 20-  Today's challenge was just that it was not a good one. Work and other mitigating factors contributed to little rest the night before and a very early,emotionally-frazzled morning where nothing was going right was not helpful. For a moment there a banana nut muffin and a latte from my favorite neighborhood barrista seemed very appealing. I  took a moment and did recognize that this was less a need than it was a memory of comfort that sort of breakfast used to bring. I didn't expect that at Day 20 I would be bullet-proof, but somehow none of the protein-filled Whole 30 compliant breakfasts seemed appetizing. I really, really wanted that muffin and steamed milk and espresso mix.

 

I didn't have it. I dutifully ate eggs, some asparagus, some grapes and black coffee. No lies, I wasn't a happy camper, but I guess that's less about the food than it was about life, so the moment of longing passed. 

 

In the future I'll be re-introducing dairy into my diet, and maybe have a latte as an occasional treat but I don't think I'll be giving in to any muffins though. (unless I learn to bake, which is not likely). I'd really rather save those rare moments of indulgence on cheese. Or wine.Yeah, definitely wine. ;)

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Day 25 - I can see the finish line from here. Feeling really charged that it's 5 days to go.  A little nervous about how to go about things after the 30 days; but on the whole feel like I will stay pretty close to the template as prescribed by the book. I've decided to stick to it as a general guide in life anyway. Some foods I don't feel the need to "re-introduce", others I truly like and enjoy I might consider as occasional treats. 

              So today is about accepting that I will forever be in charge of what goes into my body, no matter that the 30 days are over. I will not give up my meal-planning routine, nor reading supermarket labels, nor making sure I have healthy snacks in my purse when I leave the house because it's just good sense.  And if I feel the need to re-boot ( like say, after a holiday ) I can always do another round. 

               Btw, someone remarked yesterday to me how much I looked liked I was in "good health". She didn't say, oh you lost weight! She said, " Your skin is glowing, you look energetic and happy. Even your hair is shiny!" haha! I liked that last bit. I haven't changed any of my beauty products. So I'm going to give that to the Whole 30 program. 

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