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Whole 7 + 30: Ready(or not) - Hep

Nadia B

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It's happening. There is always that mental dance of "right after", "when" and "what if" before committing to a whole30. Even after doing 3 (4?) rounds of these over the last couple years I am still guilty of trying to find a perfect moment to start a new round even when it's absolutely clear that I need one.


I went on a trip to New York and did an outdoor flying trapeze class there. Apart from the breathtaking view over the Hudson River and the Statue of Liberty from the board of the rig, I have noticed something else - the hardest part for me was to jump off the board whereas others struggled with the tricks. What happens in the class is you hook yourself up, climb the ladder to the board and wait for the person who works on that board to hook you to the flying line and grab your harness. This is pretty terrifying. You hover over the edge of the board, hips forward as much a you can, with your both hands on the bar in front of you, at the mercy of some other person holding your entire body weight. Then all you do is follow the commands from the teacher: lista (means ready) - hep (means jump) - do a trick. No free styling, just follow the voice of the teacher and do what he tells you. I found it pretty ironic how I could never just jump on command. I'd freeze and pretend deaf and whatnot. I know there is no other way to get down yet I acted like one more second will change something. So here I am, making a jump and just doing my best following the rules.


I've gone through a remarkable transition from skinny amenorrheic girl with eating disorder to a weigh gaining girl with signs of orthorexia to a place where guilt is no longer daunting me and where no food is good or bad. I know what makes me feel great and I know what doesn't. I don't judge others and have zero problems co-existing with serial junk food eaters. I am bigger but healthier. I am stronger and happier. I have my moments when I freak out and have a meltdown about my health issues. I know what I can improve in my health and I intend to work on it. I have no big goals this time around, I just know that I am in the position to get back to the template. 


1. Make time to prep food (especially post WO). I have fallen the victim of convenience food lately - protein bar as a snack -pre -post, salad kit with questionable toppings, take out food with one or two less optimal ingredients etc. Nothing terrible but it definitely adds on. 


2. Include bigger variety of protein. Chicken breast has been on rotation for far too long. Get back to eating my loved liver and game meats.   


3. Pay more attention to the hunger-satiety signals. I am definitely a volume eater. If you think you can't overeat broccoli, you have obviously never met me. 


4. Increase commitment to meditation to 3 times per week. Meditating has changed my life and I am not being overly dramatic here. It got me through a lot of tough days. For all the "but-I-dont-have-time" peeps - if you can sit and if you can breath, you can definitely meditate. There will be no movie perfect moment when the house is clean, all the chores are done and you have your fresh of the laundry yoga pants for it either. Just roll with whatever you have. 


5. Learn to rest. I am all over the place - yoga, lifting, dancing, snowboarding, biking, circus, you name it and I will try it. I can't stand stillness and it is exactly what I need at times. 


Ready - hep!



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Day 1. Monday.


M1. 3 eggs and an apple. Empty fridge as I got back to Toronto late night on Sunday. Americano. 

M2. Huge sprouts and kale salad with pepitas and smoked salmon. Small box of strawberries. All bought at the supermarket at the ground floor of my office. 

M3. Bell peppers, broccoli, plantain and a turkey patty. Apple. 1 date before bed. Boredom snack. 


Exhausted from travelling and too sore from trapeze to exercise. Early to bed.


Day 2. Tuesday. 


M1. Plantain, broccoli, egg and a bit of a turkey meat. I can eat this errday 3 times a day no problem. Americano. 

M2. I was supposed to meet my friend for lunch, but she bailed. Kale salad with salmon. Cherries.


Snack. Apple from the market while shopping for food during my lunch break and sundried tomatoes. No protein or fat but that was hard to arrange that while carrying a ton of vegetables. 


M3. Beets, broccoli, sprouts with turkey. 1/2 avocado. mmmmm. Foam rolling instead of yoga. 

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I smiled when you said you were a volume eater and how much broccoli you could eat.  :)  I'm a volume eater too and last night I was keenly aware that I was not listening to those signals.  It's good for me to read your reflections on your goals because they point out things I could be more aware of.


LOVE the photo of you and the description of hesitating.  I hesitate as well, but once you're in, it's good.  I finally got on board yesterday.


Welcome back to another Whole30!

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My liver buddy is back!! Fellow meditator here working on consistent mindful eating. Very excited for your journey, girlfriend. Oh, and I love the trapeze metaphor. Spot on, poet.

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Thank you, ladies, so nice to feel welcome and supported. Emma, awareness is half the deal, so you are on the right track. Carla, you look amazing, totally digging the new profile picture. Lady M - really craving liver, maybe something to do with the amount of delis  we visited in New York that had this specialty. You totally led me onto meditation and I can't say thank you enough.


Day 3. Wednesday.


M1. 2 eggs, tomato, 1/2 avocado. Not enough but prepping breakfast at my boyfriend's, which means no time and not much to choose from. I need to stock up that fridge. Americano.


M2. Hungry at 10:30 am. Old me would sit and wait until "it's time for lunch", but I know better now that "hungry-eat" is the way. Baby carrots, mushrooms, sprouts, mini sweet potatoes (the are finger length, so cute) and smoked trout. Cherries. 


Pre wo snack tbd 


Gym. Metcon Wednesday is always a lung burner. I need to figure out post wo on the go. 


M3. TBD. Hope to go home and quickly cook something before heading out to the bar to hang out with friends. 

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You are infinitely welcome, dear Nadia. I am thrilled that meditation has changed your life for the better!

My fave go-to post WO is either tuna mashed with sweet pot and herbs or plain old hunks of chicken breast. Incredibly satisfying. But requires forethought and prep, of course.

I'm thinking about trying a beef liver pate. What's top on your liver list?

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Krista, I have them in the cheapest supermarket here. They are really great for portioning purposes plus I am the queen of "go to the office kitchen and microwave some veggies you just bought at the supermarket downstairs" lunches. They fit nicely in the lunch box.  


Lady M, I usually eat chicken liver. I either stick with the Mark Sisson's one since it required the least amount of work or make this heaven if I am feeling fancy. Beef liver I really like these meatballs. For the beef I have been eyeing this one. Seems a lot of hassle but oh so yummy. Pate with blueberry jelly.  Or similar with less ingredients - Blueberry Balsamic Pate. For the non-fancy version it's same old - rosemary, onions, thyme. 


I am hungry now. Bummer. 


For post WO, I need something I can buy before the class. I think I can get boiled eggs (save the yolk for the dinner salad) and a mini sweet potato. Changing room is tiny so eating fish is not an option. I don't think I can get compliant meat anywhere between gym/office. This is where I started to rely heavily on the protein bars...was perfect macro fit. World is not ending, moving on :) 

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Day 3. Part deux.

Pre WO. Starving! Ran home earlier and cooked two turkey patties. Oh whole30 what are you doing to me. Tablespoon of sunbutter, kinda gross. Not ideal that close to the session. Need an hour at least.

WOD was good. Practiced Spartan Lounges. Super challenging and great for shoulder stability. Reverse lounge with the barbell in one arm held high. Metcon was called a Lung Burner. If you ever want a good wipeout and have access to the free weights, try this:

Heavy kb swing (I used 45lb)
Slamball squat (just weighted squat 25lb is ok)
Frog jumps
Tuck jumps
25 reps x 4 times

Post WO turkey patty and a banana. I am very curious to see if consistent real food sports nutrition is going to make a difference. I suspect yes, but we shall see. Many turkey sliders to eat!

M3. Sprouts, beets, avocado, ground veal. Maybe a banana after since I am staying up late with friends. Boom. Feeling good.

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Day 4. Thursday. 


M1. 2 eggs and 1/2 avocado. Americano. Not enough obviously, but no groceries were added to the Mr.'s cereal for breakfast fridge. At least he knows that eggs and avocados should be there at any given moment. Plus he has an amazing cast iron skillet, so I enjoyed the crispy edges of fried eggs. 


M2. TBD. No cooking strike continues. Sprouts (I am sort of obsessed with them if you haven't noticed), mini sweet potatoes and smoked salmon. My co-workers must hate me. Cabbage + fish is definitely an acquired taste :unsure:


Americano (5 hr sleep ouch) + bowl of cherries. Not a whole30 spirited emotional eating. No stress though, I will get into the template eating mode eventually. 


Pre Wo Gym Post Wo. I really suck at prep. Grabbed a pack oh hard boiled eggs and a handful of cashews while running to the gym. Lady at the checkout at the bulk barn was like "are you seriously only buying 1/2 ounces of cashews? Seriously. I was starving, so nuts and an egg disappeared in a second. Good WOD - lunges, Romanian deadlifts (autocorrect swaps it for delight. I'd say it's the exact opposite) and some intervals finisher. Remaining egg post WO. Not ideal, but I am trying.  


M3. Veal, bell pepper, tomato, 1/4 avocado and plantain a for tonight. I feel like I am full but it might not be enough. Small apple + large generous spoon of sunbutter. I was legitimately hungry. I might have been better off eating another helping of protein, but I am lazy to cook again.  


Meditation before bed, I promise. 


Existing problems: stinky lunches, uncooked liver in the fridge, no post wo game, mystery mini breakouts all over my face and slacking on the meditation front. 


Upcoming problem #1: snowboarding trip on Sat = lunch and dinner out. Thank God my bf just considers me a crazy hippie and does not give me attitude when I modify orders with tons of substitutions. There must be options in the village which means I need some research to do. The places that I know there would be extremely hard to navigate. I am not too concerned, worst case scenario I end up spending a lot of money for not a lot of food. Big deal.      


Upcoming problem #2: wine night with the gym girls. I go to a ridiculously expensive small group exercise gym, where membership is limited and I know everyone who works out there. Awesome community plus excellent coaching and I scream "take my moneyyyy". I am not the most outgoing happy-go-lucky person out there. I find it hard to build deep connections with people quickly. I am not everyone's friend in two weeks kind of person. Long story short, a lot of girls in my gym became good friends outside of the gym. They are organizing a Wine Night for girls. I don't drink that often and I actually hate wine (shocking I know), but I don't want to miss out on opportunity to hang out with them and maybe get to know them better. FOMO as cool kids say it. I can lie about medication, I can tell them that I don't drink and get over it or I can skip the event. I can't order a mocktail, this is a strictly wine bar.   

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Let's make a pact to cook liver this weekend. I think I'll try the blueberry jelly recipe with fewer ingredients. Thanks for the link!

The girls night out? Go. Have fun. Just be honest. They're gym rats like you. They'll get it. And support you. Even if they're the bodybuilding types who drink like fishes in the work hard play hard tradition.

What kind of sprouts?

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Okay, the liver game is on. I feel that I should chop it with eggs and eat it for lunch to achieve the status of the most disgusting person in the building among my co-workers. Joking but not really. Yeah, I think I will make my beef liver muffins with cranberries and parsley. Mix - bake.


Yeah these girls are drinking a LOT and party a lot. I attended quite a few parties at/with our gym and I was "impressed" with peoples' abilities. I can confirm that I am the only non drinking person there including coaches. I figured I can't really make them hate me by not joining the drinking. Worst case scenario they will think I am weird and keep hanging out without me. That's ok too, I don't have issues with rejection. I think so. 


Brussel sprouts. I can sustain on the monodiet of Brussel sprouts (or broccoli). 

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My fave way to eat brussels sprouts lately is to steam them and toss them warm in a garlicky mustardy lemony vinaigrette. I prefer them this way to roasted right now.


You are a liver genius!!

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Very happy to see you started another whole. Also dig the metaphor. Fly, Nadia! I do love the way your mind works, and the way you express it.

Like you, M, I seem to have ODd on the roasted brussells. I didn't make them once this winter. The way you mentioned sounds light and fresh.

I might join the liver challenge. I used to make my pate Julia Childs style but I think Nadia you turned me on to the Sisson method and that's how I always make it now. (I make it for our of our family holidays and an occasional treat at home. Was hard for me to think about eating it without the crostini I make to eat it with, but now I love it with radish slices.) My husband also loves pate and since he has gastritis on top of his sarcoidosis he needs all the gut healing he can get.

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Liver for all. Love it. I never put as much butter as Mark Sisson advises. I have always wanted to try the Julia's recipe, but as we have established already - I am lazy when it comes to cooking  :rolleyes:


I eat Brussel sprouts roasted, steamed or raw. Shaved in a salad with apples (or pomegranate + avocado once in a while) and tons of lemony dressing. So good. I used to make it a lot until I gave my mandolin slicer to my Mom and never got it back. 

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Day 5. Friday. 


Last night I dry brushed, meditated and slept like a baby. Is anyone else on the dry brushing train? I enjoy it so much and it helps me sleep for sure. 


12 minute interval workout picked up randomly from the app while laying in bed. I should have thrown in some planks there too. Not a toughie but today is a rest day as I need my legs to cooperate on the slopes tomorrow. Right now they are very angry at me. I am not going to lie, I am really tempted to go and workout today. Goddammit our gym's programming is just too good, every day is a play time. This is not what I promised myself. REST day, Nadia.    


M1. Veal patty, Brussels sprouts, Swiss chard and parsnip fries. I forgot how good they taste. My tummy felt alright so I might carefully add them back to my grocery list. I need to make them with duck fat and spices. Whoa I am full, I think I prefer eggs for breakfast. Americano. 


Tiger blood is kicking in. That was quick taking my massive refeed in New York into account. 


M2. I have packed the same thing for lunch. I was not too hungry...7 hours after breakfast. Mind you it wasn't huge. I ate around 2 pm anyways. Greasy roasted parsnips you are the best and so easy to overeat. 


Kombucha while walking during my lunch. So thristy.


M3. Liver time! Calf liver with....what do I make as a side? Probably mini potatoes...or mashed cauliflower.


Little DIY project after work to keep me from running to the gym. I am making a beard oil and a beard balm. No, whole30 did not induce facial hairgrowth. I am making it as a little addition to the J's birthday present. His lumberjack look is getting out of control and I don't want to pay 30$ per bottle in store. Also I am going to the concert tonight.


Last trip to the "mountains" tomorrow. Hope my cracked thumb will be ok (I sprained or fractured my thumb a week or so ago. It is still kind of sore and doesn't have full mobility). I didn't go to the doctor as it is so much hassle to do an X-ray. They can't put a cast on that one either, so I figured I just give it some time to heal and rest.  


Existing problems: sore butt, potentially broken finger and no plan for food for the snowboarding trip (eggs and nut butter packets?).  



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Liver didn't happen. I am sorry Lady M. I crave it even more now.

Day 6. Disaster Saturday.

Stomach was massively upset Friday night and Saturday morning which leads me to the conclusion that I got too excited too soon about the parsnips. It might have been kombucha. Under slept big time. 4 hours of sleep at best, the concert was worth it though.

M1. 2 eggs and 1/2 avocado.
M1.2 Feeling like garbage. Americano and a banana at the skiing resort.

Weather was perfect for snowboarding. Slushy snow and sun all day. I was sore and sluggish but enjoyed every minute of being outdoors and riding my board.

M1.3 Snacking fail. Handfuls of cashews because hungry before the group lunch. Canola oil cashews. Cringe.

M2. Lunch outdoors on the patio. I liked that we joined the group of friends for the day but it made ordering a bit harder. I give myself an arbitrary pass with this meal but only because I am not doing the real deal 30 days now. I would restart if I was doing the thing. Naked burger with pickles. Sweet potato fries. I asked the waiter to check the oil and breading but he never got back to me and I've never asked again.

After snowboarding for couple more hours the slope was closing and everyone decided to go hang out at the friend's place nearby. I am glad that I am adapted and experienced enough to feel no deprivation around people eating chips, nachos and pizza. I asked the girl who did the shopping to grab me an apple (craving the cool fresh acidity) and a bag of carrots. Dipped them in the guac (which I watched being made so I knew it was compliant).

Long drive home. Completely pooped and starving. I ate a little bowl of veggies and taco meat from J's fridge and happily passed out. Could be worse of a day after all.

Day 7. Sunday.

M1. Craving simple meals. 3 eggs and a plantain.

Pre ballet snack. Apple and cashews. Ballet class.

M2. I had to eat on the go. Supermarket meal: paleo vegan blahblah lasagna which in reality is just zhuccinni sliced with tomatoes and pureed cashews. Oven roasted turkey made in store = they knew the seasoning ingredients. This was eaten on the subway next to a kid with the McDonalds bag. We exchanged pitiful looks and proceeded to chew. Funny how we both thought that one another's meal was horrible.

M3. Dinner with the bf. He is making ribs which means I can't have any. I am sure I saw a chicken breast in his fridge, I guess he can grill that for me. Smoked cauliflower (with coconut milk and mustard sauce) and acorn squash on the side.

Existing problems: template failure
Upcoming problems: explaining why I won't have ribs and not sounding like a psychopath. Still I'd rather skip them as sometimes he has micromanagement issues.
Things that are not problems: life is good even with a sore tummy and it's a biking weather. Finally.


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I always like to do a little trial run before I officially begin, too. Sorry you felt like crap, but I think you're managing splendidly!


I have plenty of the blueberry thyme pate and I'm happy to share. It's setting in the fridge right now. Of what I licked off the spatula, it's tasty!


Cheers to biking! I'm on my way out the door for a ride right now. . . . 

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Yeah, even veterans need a little warm up. Eating out is definitely is the trickiest part of the whole30. I have so many wonderful places around with amazing local antibiotic-free meat and farmer's eggs and soy oil....I want to scream - whyyyyyy do you bother with all these amazing fresh ingredients if you are going to cook it in something that is used for making printing ink.  


Krista, sometimes do the best is not working with the rules. Not that I need a gold star for completing a whole 30 :D

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