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I'm not sure WHAT title to give this! ;)

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So, I started with y'all yesterday. Actually before the 7/1 start date was announced I had started on 6/6. I had just gotten to a point where I was feeling crappy and woke up that morning and started. I've done one W30 in the past (completed, I mean) and it was okay. I did the one in January and got two weeks in and suddenly felt terrible and quit after another week. A little back story: I had done an elimination diet for health reasons some years ago. Similar to a W30, but maybe without as much great information and meal planning. I didn't need to lose weight at the time, but I did. I got very thin and in most ways didn't feel great, although some other things felt AWESOME! I could breathe better than ever (I was in my mid-30s at the time, so breathing wasn't a thing for me-it was just that I thought my running training would have made the hills easier and it just didn't, until I quit grains and sugar.), run better and faster, it was great. The thing is, I didn't know why. I attributed it all to my training. Until Thanksgiving. I ran a race in the morning, my fastest ever. I felt great. The hills were great! It was all just, GREAT! And then I decided one piece of pie..... Well, I cannot eat just one piece of pie, so I don't know if only one piece would have had the same result, but I was absolutely unable to run a hill two days later. I could barely breathe. It was like running through jello. OH! So that's what food did to me! You would think that would be enough to keep me on the straight and narrow, but long story short. It did not.

As I started my W30 on 6/6 I decided to really think about why I didn't feel better in January and did something I had not really committed to before. I actually really read the meal planning information. I had eliminated all the things before, but I am quite sure that in January I was not eating enough healthy fats or rounding out my meals well enough. I didn't ever think the W30 didn't work, I just realized I may have been doing it wrong. This was probably the problem with the first elimination diet I did as well. You have to eat energy to have it, right?


Since 6/6 I have really been feeling better and better and making sure that each of my meals consists of ALL the things I should be eating. I'm 52, watch my one year old granddaughter full time (50+ hours per week) and have really committed to getting back to exercise (thanks kids who gave me a Fitbit for Mother's Day!) The exercise and eating habits have me feeling energized and better about my body than I have in years, I can't wait to get back to the gym and I have just started a C25K program. I love to run, but have one injury prone ankle that I am babying and coddling. So far only occasional and minimal pain that a good massage and some ice takes care of very well.


Anyway, back to 7/1. I was going to finish my 6/6 W30, take a few days off and start again so I would continue to feel great for my daughter's mid-August wedding. Instead, I went out with friends on the 30th, changed my mind, had a drink and restarted on 7/1. I was accidentally served garlic with that meal and I am highly sensitive to it (SOB) so it's not easy to tell if feeling crummy yesterday was the drink or the garlic, but I suspect the garlic.

I don't anticipate having the first week struggles because I have been clean eating all along. One thing I do have to say about weighing yourself (if this is a little secret you keep to yourself because you think it doesn't matter-it really does), I did step on the scale occasionally this time around (I have removed it from my bathroom as of yesterday) and seeing the #, even as it goes down and takes me closer to my clothes fitting again and into my strong, comfortable body, did have an effect on eating. Or maybe not so much eating, but the way I looked at the food on my plate or planned a meal. There were definitely times that I might have made my lunch a little more snack sized in portions or skipped the avocado or had the veggies and avocado, but not the protein. Little things. All the food I ate was W30 approved, but not entirely in the spirit of the program. I did learn that a lunch like that will definitely have me looking for fruit, raisins and dates about mid-afternoon. HIDE YOUR SCALE!

Anyway, I didn't intend to write a memoir, just introduce myself. I'm not usually great at checking message boards (remember: one year old. She happens to be napping and I should be getting other things done), but I felt like adding this level of commitment to the next 29 days. Or more. I'll likely keep going right up to the wedding. I also already have a good idea of what foods I cannot eat, it is just that unless I am vigilant the sugar monster takes over and I binge. I'm hoping checking in here will keep that from happening forever this time.


Happy eating everybody!

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So I don't think I will log every meal. That, as a goal, is a sure way to set myself up for failure, but I may log an occasional meal.


Today I got lucky at my local butcher. I already knew he made paleo bacon (so good!) and he makes paleo sausages, but I never get them because they have garlic in them and I am allergic or have a sensitivity or whatever. It isn't good for me to eat garlic. (So sad, I love it so much.) Anyway, I got to talking with the butcher and he said he would make paleo sweet Italian sausage without the garlic for me! The bacon! The sausages! This guy may be my new best friend!

I have also decided to incorporate some of the Whole9 Factors into my Whole30. Here is what I am planning:

1. Nutrition: I will eat a real, meal-sized, lunch everyday this month.


2. Sleep: I will put my phone away by 9:30 PM and not check it right before I go to sleep.


3. Stress Management: I will meditate for 10 or more minutes every morning.


4. Exercise: I will add squats, planks, and 2-3 lifting days to my current daily walk/run workout. Squats can come any time, as can a 'drop and plank' throughout the day.


5.  Active Recovery: I will stretch. I will stretch. I will stretch....


6. Injury Rehab. I will continue to massage and ice and will listen to my body if it isn't working anymore.


7.  Personal Growth: I will finish It Starts With Food and I will actually cook.


8.  Temperance: I will replace online time with reading and knitting.


9.  Fun and Play:  I will join my husband hiking or seeing a movie or having a date night at least once per week.


So, there it is. Now I have to follow it and go to bed! 

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Well, I made it through our annual 4th of July bash, and it is a bash. I should have taken a photo of the foods people brought, not one thing came into this house that I could eat and had I been on day FOUR I might not have made it (technically, thanks to a drink on day 25 of my previous W30, I am on day four, but have days previous that I guess I can call a lean-in). Twenty four days of clean eating previous to that gave me some strength. There were enough desserts here to rot a tooth by looking at them. I am never tempted by pasta salads, thank goodness. The desserts though? Luckily, most of them were store-bakery purchased and didn't really appeal to me, but the few homemade things looked good. I would never waste a cheat on crappy sweets, I've learned that lesson.

I did prepare very well. I had three salads made and only shared one of them, the others stayed in my refrigerator so that I would still have food at the second go around of grilling and eating (I said bash, it is a long one). I had turkey burgers that were just ground turkey and rosemary that I smothered in Annie's Dijon and my homemade ketchup. The ketchup was an experiment for me, I'm not a ketchup fan really and this ketchup, while good, isn't something I'll make a lot of only because I don't miss having ketchup in my diet. I ate only my foods and even when cleaning up, threw all of the leftovers away. People should really take their food with them when they leave, such a waste. Then again, they shouldn't be eating it....


I also did not drink. Not even a sip. A miracle really, because while I have never been a big drinker (limit of one or 1 1/2, things get too weird after that and only a few per month, depending on where we are. Vacation may be more), I am an introvert. Big parties that I am hosting are particularly difficult for me, all that small talk. I would rather sit and have a deep conversation with you that small talk with 70 people that I only see a few times a year. It is exhausting. I am also not shy, so it is just that my energy gets zapped out to people and I need breaks. If I don't get them I get a little stressed and usually by evening one drink gets me through the night. I only though once of having a little one, but my daughter (as she poured herself a glass of wine) was shocked that I would even think of it! Not now! She was my cheerleader.

Today has been tougher for some reason. Breakfast was fine, it is always my easiest meal to keep on track, even though we went out. Omelets and fruit (ignoring what it may have been cooked in, my family really wanted me to come along) are fine. This afternoon I went on a search for ingredients to make Fiona's Phenomenal Green Chicken, but the local Whole Foods and the Korean Grocer were out of the Red Boat Fish Sauce and I couldn't find a compliant product. I also couldn't find the Aleppo Pepper, but was going to sub that. I changed my mind and decided to make a BBQ sauce, looked at the one in Well Fed (thank goodness for the kindle app on my phone) and of course couldn't find compliant sunflower seed butter, so now I am roasting seeds to make my own. If you knew how much I don't really like to cook and would rather be out in my yard reading a book, you'd be amazed I am saying this. So, I'll be making the BBQ sauce for the chicken and waiting a week or so for the fish sauce to arrive at the market. 

Anyway, as I'm driving around I am listening to Melissa and Dallas read their book to me, talking about what happens when we eat crap (my word, not theirs) and imagining the crap and all the things they say about endorphins and opiates, etc. is totally working on my brain and now it is lunch time and I'm hungry and want cookies. So. Bad. UGH. Walking through Whole Foods I wanted to grab some chocolate or just one little cookie. Anything. I ended up with cashews, raspberries, a couple of Epic bars, and a Lara Bar. I ate only a handful of the cashews, some raspberries when I came home and some of the broccoli salad I made yesterday (some bacon and nuts for protein in that). I made it through. 


I just wonder when, if EVER I will not have cravings for sugar. I need to believe that day is coming, but it's been a while and I still crave and with the exception of that one drink I have been so compliant and eating well. I'd like to think that in a months + time I will be able to have something at my daughter's wedding and not have it send me on a downward spiral of sugar eating, because I have given it up for months before and craved the entire time. 

Other than that, I'm feeling pretty good. Tennis elbow, GONE! Ear-ringing, GONE! (The only reason I really know that is because it came back after that one drink. I never even missed it until it was back.) Pain in ankle, NOT GONE! But totally not what it was, I can walk and jog and have very minimal pain, helped with icing and massage. I'm sleeping better. Love handles, SHRINKING! Thighs, SHAPING! I need to write all this down so when I am craving that Lara Bar (shouldn't have purchased it) I can come here and be reminded of the reasons I am trying to break that craving cycle. 

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That cycle is a doozy isn't it!  I'm constantly testing the boundaries of it :) and learning that those boundaries and the consequences are still there.  But, when I look back, even with the ups and downs, I'm moving forward.  We think my daughter's eczema is triggered by garlic.  It's rough because garlic is so tasty and in so many great things - like sausages!  It's quite cool that you found a sausage maker!!

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