Jump to content

Week-long retreat in the mountains with shared food as part of routine. Help!

Recommended Posts

I have signed up for a Benedictine-style retreat at a mountain camp in Colorado in August with a dozen of my colleagues.  When I got the first email, I realized that the structure of the retreat involves each participant planning and leading the prep on one meal. Eating together is part of the experience.  (Of course - I should have realized that - but didn't focus on it.)   


The instructions indicate that we are supposed to list food issues/allergies so that each planner can take them into account.  The retreat leaders will do the grocery shopping beforehand.  We'll be "up on the mountain" for a week.  There is a basic kitchen at the camp.


There is no way this group is going to be following Whole 30 guidelines, and I dread explaining them.  I don't necessarily plan to be on a strict whole-30 while I'm there (I'm on Day 22 now and plan to pretty much stick to the rails indefinitely).  But I can't imagine dealing with pancakes, sandwiches, pasta, casseroles and all that stuff for a whole week.  I don't want to make everybody else frustrated and miserable, either.  I think I could come up with a plan to feed myself when necessary, but it kind of throws a monkey wrench in the spirit of the thing.  Also, I don't want to spend the whole week debating nutritional theory with people.  


It's almost enough to make me inquire about canceling , but I REALLY want to go for all the other things we will be doing.  I took the picture there last year  See what I mean?


Need encouragement/reality check/advice/tips!




Link to comment
Share on other sites

How soon do you need to let the camp food shoppers know your food needs? If you have time, I'd suggest going through a forma reintroduction period so that you'll have clear information about what foods you want to reintroduce.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 (I'm on Day 22 now and plan to pretty much stick to the rails indefinitely)


Do you mean for 8 more days or are you referring to the rest of your life?  I know group retreats can end up being a carb fest.  It's cheaper and stretches the food budget.  Bread, pasta, rice and soup. 


A Whole 30 is only 30 days.  If you do a Reintroduction Phase and test the waters, experiment with foods - one bite of non-compliant food means the Whole 30 is over.  Going indefinitely is not possible unless you plan to meticulously reject even one and every bite of non-compliant food.


Dallas Hartwig says the Whole 30 is a Learning Tool but not a Lifestyle.   It should be used as the springboard into the rest of your life.  I believe his words in this recent link will help you with what you have planned. 


"But here’s the thing: the Whole30 program itself is also not a lifestyle. It can and should open the door to a new lifestyle, but our specific rules are not intended to be a way of eating long term, nor is it a benchmark to live up to or a lifetime of “perfect” to be obtained.


In fact, eventually, we hope you won’t need the Whole30 at all… because the Whole30 is a plan designed to make itself obsolete as quickly as possible."

"The Whole30 can be the gateway into a whole new life. Don’t hang out at the doorway. Walk forward, go beyond."


- See more at: http://whole30.com/2015/05/whole30-learning-tool/#sthash.kF3sazUP.dpuf



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the responses.  I can see that I need to clarify my question a bit.


I have to give a response on the food right at the end of this Whole 30, so I won't have time for reintro trials before that.  

I may be assuming too much, but I don't think I have strong reactivity to any particular food.   I think that my problem has been a diet dominated by grain, dairy, and hidden sugar.  I don't really know if legumes and soy are a problem - they were not a huge part of my diet, and I can find that out in reintro.


Also, I realize that the Whole 30 as a STRICT regimen is not designed for a permanent approach.  On the other hand, my impression is that sticking to a diet (not Diet, but what-you-eat) with as little grain, dairy, legumes, and sugar as possible, and greatly moderating alcohol- and completely leaving out stuff that you are reactive to - IS the long-term goal. At least, it's my long term goal.   I'm not worried about stuff like dijon mustard made with wine or vanilla extract or a couple of strips of sugar-cured bacon.


I guess what I'm saying is, you are right, this is not a during-a-whole-30 question, it's more of an post-whole-30, adapted lifestyle question:  How to handle a retreat where the fare for a whole week is likely to be the complete opposite of what is good for me, in a situation where I need physical stamina, and where there is a certain amount of pressure to not be picky and demanding (not that I ever want to be). 


thanks again!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes you don't want to become ill the whole time

No you need not explain yourself other than list what foods you were "allergic" to before If they weren't a part of your life preW30 why add them in?

I would see if they post online their pot lucks or recipe ingredients if you'd be able to review anything first might help you decide also

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...