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Life without Carbs, Coffee and Chocolate


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Day 1


Had trouble getting out of bed as usual and felt like it never really picked up.  Usually I keep going on a rollercoaster of carbs and coffee every few hours to stay alert at my desk and then crash and feel like I could fall asleep mid-blink from 3-7pm, that's when I through in the chocolate, and then have trouble getting to bed until way too late. 


Day 1 of cutting carbs, coffee and chocolate left me insanely sluggish, unable to focus and moody all day.  I was soooooo thankful that I had prepped the slow-cooker the night before or it would have been game over- eating pizza time that first day.  Even still, after dinner home alone... it was VERY hard to resist ripping the kitchen apart to find something with sugar. 


Breakfast- 3 poached eggs, vegetable stir-fry (spinach, tomato, red pepper, cauliflower, mushrooms), avocado, olive oil

Lunch- Can of tuna in salad (brussels sprouts, kale, other mixed greens, carrot, handful dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds), olive oil and balsamic vinegar, avocado.


Dinner- 2 chicken thighs, cauliflower, coconut oil, onion, mushrooms, red pepper, jalapeno pepper, 1/2 bunch of parsley (mostly melted down into a broth in slow cooker- oops! careful of the bones!)


Survived!  Still determined.

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Day 2


Had trouble getting out of bed again today, ignored the alarm and was 15 minutes late for work (Don't think anyone noticed today). Once I got going things got better!  In general I had more energy and a brighter outlook on things than I did yesterday.  Since I don't wake up early enough to eat breakfast at home, I eat at my desk while going through emails in the morning.  I know this isn't a good idea, but I am making progress- finished breakfast at 10am instead of... yesterday I think I took my last bite at noon.  I have started (2 days in a row now!) going for a walk at lunch since the weather has been so beautiful and I think it is helping to give me that kick that I used to ask coffee to do to get me through the afternoon.  This moderate 30 minutes of exercise is really demonstrating just how astronomically out of shape I really am.  It can only get better though right!?  I'm really enjoying reading other people's testimonials and experiences.. it really has helped me stay on track so far.


Breakfast- 3 fried eggs, avocado, veg stir-fry (red pepper, mushrooms, kale, onion, olive oil)

Lunch- Leftover pulled chicken and cauliflower mix from last night.

Dinner- Baked chicken breast, roasted vegetables (olive oil covered sweet potatoes, carrots, Brussels sprouts)


Feeling determined to continue to conquer cravings!

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a rollercoaster of carbs and coffee every few hours to stay alert at my desk and then crash and feel like I could fall asleep mid-blink from 3-7pm, that's when I through in the chocolate, and then have trouble getting to bed until way too late.


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Day 3


Woke up from the strangest dream this morning, something about escaping some kind of natural disaster, and then ending up mistakenly peeing in a toilet that was really art in front of a group of Japanese tourists.  Really. Strange. 


I think it was sign though that it was going to be a crazy day, which it was... and which didn't really help with sticking to the program.  I got going okay in the morning once I finally got out of bed (that's still hard).  I Didn't eat breakfast until 10am because it was a running around type morning, which pushed lunch back... and then I got so caught up in working on a project this afternoon that lunch didn't happen until after 3pm!  Man was I starving by then!  My awesome man wanted to cook me a steak for dinner, and the ones he bought were the size of size 12 feet so was pretty much a mean unto itself.  He told me that he found an easter egg today that was left over from last month... don't worry he says, I took care of it for you.  I had to stop by Chapters to pick up a gift after dinner and it was THE MOST DIFFICULT five minutes when I walked in and had to resist buying a deliciously creamy drink from Starbucks inside.  That was a true test of strength.


Even though the timing of my meals were messed up all day which I know is bad for my leptin and in turn insulin and all that jazz... but in general I still think it was a good day.  I didn't cheat, I felt in a pretty good mood, and I beat the sugar dragon for the 3rd day in a row!  Actually what's really cool, is that I actually forgot what day I was on!  It's only 3, but still, small victories people! 


Breakfast- 2 eggs, leftover sweet potato mix with brussel sprouts, carrots, celery (all cooked in coconut oil)

Lunch- Chicken breast with salad (green apple, avocado, kale, celery, red pepper, tomato, onion, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, seeds)

Dinner- GIant 2 palms worth of delicious steak and a banana


Feeling good, but definitely not going to get enough sleep tonight.  :( 

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Day 7


Must drink more water, must drink more water, must drink more water.


Leg/feet swelling still hasn't gone down all the way- must make an effort to drink more water so that my body can let go of what it's holding on to. 


The weekend was full of opportunities to cheat, and I survived them all... although I did eat a bunch of smoked meat which I'm afraid was very likely not compliant, but was delicious and totally fulfilled my junk food cravings. Anyways, onward...


Breakfast- eggs and stir-fry veg

Lunch- chicken drumsticks and avocado, tomato, onion, cucumber

Dinner- spaghetti squash with pesto, salmon, mushroom, yellow pepper


Must drink more water, must drink more water, must drink more water...

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Okay so I did something bad... I weighed myself today... day 11... annnnnnd I'm down 6 lbs!!!  Okay so two days ago I woke up and thought... hmm I think my stomach is just a little less.  And I've noticed that the swelling in legs have been just a little less for a few days too.  Then yesterday I looked in the mirror and thought that my face/neck was just a little less.  So today when I got home from work I thought, I feel less, I wonder if I weigh less. 


I thought about the psychological implications if I didn't weigh less... or if I do this week but then end up being a bit more again next week because of natural fluctuations.  Then I thought about how good I've been feeling!  I am sleeping great, I have more energy all day, I am in a moderate to good mood all the time now, and like I said, the edema has gone down somewhat.  THESE are the reasons that I started this program in the first place!  I've been over weight my whole life, and although it's been steadily increasing and of course loosing weight is a goal, but what actually finally made me QUIT the bad foods?! It was that I had been feeling so awful lately! 


So that did it!  I decided that no matter what the scale said now or whenever, I was going to keep going with this program to see what it could really do for me as it has already proved effective after just 11 days.  6 lbs!  Even if it's all water weight, I don't care it made me happy and is just one more sign that things are moving in the right direction.  But seriously, I promise not to weigh myself again for another 2 weeks. 


My brain is changing too!  Cooking dinner tonight I realized that my concept of "starch" has changed.  I grew up in an English household where meat and potatoes were a staple for almost every meal, and if not then it would be use plates of pasta or rice or bread.  Even as an adult trying to eat a healthy diet I always tried to make sure it was balanced ie. protein, veg, and carb in every meal (low fat of course ;))


Adopting the meal plan here, I realized that my mind still wants to do this except that now instead of a base gluten starch for every meal, I tend to think about which base vegetable I use for the meal in order to ensure that I'm full.  So far these include cauliflower, broccoli, kale, cabbage, squash of different types, and root vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes.  Then I add sort of condiment vegetables like tomoato, peppers, onion, mushrooms, celery, etc. in smaller quantities.  So tonight cauliflower was my "starch" hahaha.   I wonder if this is common...


Breakfast- leftover pork roast, carrots and Brussels sprouts

Lunch- picnic style (olives, half an avocado, raw carrot and celery with homemade babaganoush, cherry tomatoes, 3 hard boiled eggs)- Delicious!

Dinner- ground beef in leftover pork juice/fat from crockpot, cauliflower, gr. pepper, mushrooms, spinach, TONS of spices/herbs



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Period.  Woke up with it yesterday and had a horrific morning because of it, but then things settled down by mid afternoon.  Eating was strange hard though because I couldn't feel hunger, just cramps.  I forced myself anyway, and had a large serving of 80% coconut cream in coffee after lunch instead of the chocolate, ice cream, fried chicken, chips and pizza that I wanted to stuff in my mouth (not because I was hungry, but because my brain thinks that I can medicate myself with junk food).  The healthy fat of the coconut cream helped take the edge off and I have now made it through two days without going off the rails like I feared I would.  A normal day pre-Whole30 was not exactly healthy eating, but period week I would always allow myself a no guilt binge fest, so this has definitely been testing my psychological health. 


Today I feel much better, but tired and edgy as expected.  It's disappointing because I've been feeling so good lately.  I wonder if your body burns more calories leading up to and during mentation?  I'm choosing to believe that with all that added activity inside me that I am, and trying to focus on that.  Even though I might have gained back some bloat for a few days, it is only temporary, and I'll come out of it even further ahead then before it started.  Women eh?  Two steps forward, one step back...


Meal 1- Salad (kale, green pepper, tomato, chicken breast, pea pods, oil and balsamic vinegar) and a banana, coffee with coconut cream

Meal 2- Salad (spinach and mixed greens, half avocado, cucumber, onion, mushroom, carrot, artichoke hearts, flax seeds, hard boiled eggs, herb vinaigrette)

Meal 3- Salad (avocado, chicken breast, yellow pepper, tomato, celery, cucumber, broccoli, hot pepper sauce, herb vinaigrette)


I know, salad, salad, salad... They were all delicious. 

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Your body does definitely need more nutrition in the time leading up to your period. We think of cravings for chocolate and pizza, but really it's wanting carbs and fat -- so add some starchy vegetables, and don't skimp on the fats.


Most people feel best with a fist-sized serving of starchy vegetable each day, and people who are very active, who are prone to depression or anxiety, and women who are pregnant, nursing, or in the week or so leading up to their period and first few days of it often need more.

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Day... wait I have to look (isn't that great that I don't count anymore?!)... Day 21!


Well I survived my lovely week a la womanhood, and today my mother-in-law gave me a Happy "Potential Mother" Day present... do you think she's fishing for something.. I think that's a very loud hint.  Anyway, the weekend of two family dinners was interesting. 


Family dinner number one with my family Saturday evening was not quite perfect... of course 45 minutes before we need to leave the house is when I decide to try to make homemade mayo for the first time to put in the potato salad that I was supposed to take, and of course it decided not to thicken and mayo-fy so what can I do... I used non-compliant mayo that had vegetable oil and sugar in it.  The runny none mayo got some extra ingredients added to become a dressing for the kale salad, and we ran out the door.  I was so mad.  So I eat a scoop of the damn non-compliant potato salad, along with some kale veg salad and plain grilled chicken.  I didn't not have a piece of lemon meringue pie, or a piece of chocolate pie.  So it was almost a win.  Ugh.. carrying on. 


Sunday night was the in-law dinner, which was better food-wise, no non-compliant food- but only because my husband told his mother that I was doing this "diet thing" so not to put butter on the vegetables or sauce on the meat like she normally would.  So then of course she announces to everyone that she's so sorry that everything is plain and unseasoned tonight because of me!  Which of course makes me feel awful, and leads to a thousand questions and eye rolls because I'm THAT person now who makes eating such a challenge.  Gotta love mother-in-laws. 


Goals for the week:

1. Drink lots of water

2. Go to bed earlier so that I get 8 hours of sleep

3. Continue to slay the craving demons

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Oh man! My mom is doing similar. I visit at least once a week and there are many shared mealtimes (she lives on the family farm where I do some work). Frequently, a farm worker will bring in some dish to share. I simply say "no thank you, I just ate" (because I make sure I've eaten before going into that house of junk food). But my mom always interrupts and says "oh, she has decided not to eat pasta!" or "don't let her see those cookies - she is depriving herself!" Ugh....


I love the "potential mother" day present. Ha!

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Oh man! My mom is doing similar. I visit at least once a week and there are many shared mealtimes (she lives on the family farm where I do some work). Frequently, a farm worker will bring in some dish to share. I simply say "no thank you, I just ate" (because I make sure I've eaten before going into that house of junk food). But my mom always interrupts and says "oh, she has decided not to eat pasta!" or "don't let her see those cookies - she is depriving herself!" Ugh....


I love the "potential mother" day present. Ha!

Yes, it's wonderful how people are so supportive :rolleyes: ... even my older brother who I actually made the effort to really explain things to (mostly trying to stay under the radar), didn't get that I have become obese because I have an addiction; I can't stop myself from eating the whole bag of chips and the whole box of cookies like normal people who have a healthy relationship with food.  He laughed it off, said he's glad that I'm eating healthy, but that he doesn't think food addiction is a real thing, but just an excuse.  I explained that I have tried to cut back and eat healthier lots of times before, but they never work because once I get a taste of something I crave more and more.  For years I've thought it would be easier if it was possible to just quit food period. But then I'd think, no that's insane you can't quit eating.  Now I know that you can quit the bad food, the addictive food.  That's why this is working for me when nothing else has... because I was able to quit my addictions cold turkey. 


It's pretty interesting how other people aren't comfortable with you saying no thank you to their food. They can be really weird about it. 

Co-worker: "Would you like brownie?"

Me: "Oh they look delicious, but no thank you". 

Co-worker: "Come on I made them last night, even the icing from scratch!" 

Me: "I bet they're delicious, but I'm trying really hard not to eat sweets right now".  

Co-worker: "Just one won't hurt anything! Are you sure? What about if you take one for later?"   


Not even exaggerating, this is very close to the conversation I had with a lady at work the other day.  I wanted to shove the plate of brownies in her face and say, are you f'ing serious?!  Does it look like I need an f'ing brownie?!  I said no thank you!  Instead, I smiled and said it one more time. 


Day 22

Meal 1: left over beef roast mixed in with new pork sausage meat, stewed tomatoes, mushrooms and zucchini (a strange but tasty mix); coffee with coconut milk

Meal 2: Salad with 3 eggs, tons of different veggies incl red cabbage, kale, blueberries, carrot, cherry tomatoes, red pepper, onion, broccoli; failed mayo dressing with garlic and herbs and apple cider vinegar; banana with about a tablespoon rainforest butter

Meal 3: Chicken leg and half a breast, carrots, broccoli and mushrooms; 2 slices of bacon and a clementine


fyi- if you haven't tried rainforest butter, get in your car right now and go buy some.  Serious.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Day 31!  Whoo! 


So when I started this journey, I wasn't sure I could last 30 days.  I've tried limiting foods before, but I always succumbed to the convenience of take-out food on the run between jobs and when I was tired, so it only would last a week or two and I never saw the results I was hoping for. This time though... I made it 30 days!  Full disclosure, there were a couple of hiccups along the way... there were fries once, and non-compliant mayo potato salad, and smoked meat that definitely had sulphites and sugar in it, and a can of coconut milk with guar gum in it before I knew what that was. 


So... this is day one of whole30 2.0!  That's right, I'm doing another month where I intend to be even stronger, learn from the last 30 days and come out feeling even better than I do now! 


whole30 1.0 Victories:


- improved inflammation in legs/feet (not gone, but better)

- falling asleep faster and sleeping deeper with less interruptions

- improved and stable mood

- improved energy.  even on days that I don't get quite enough sleep, like Mondays... I'm still happy and clear headed in the morning and don't crash in the afternoon

- improved focus

- generally more motivated to do things other than watch tv

- no more heartburn

- almost zero gas... really it actually seems sort of strange since I noticed.

- almost zero cravings now at this point, and able to say no pretty easily to even super tasty looking brownies.

- portion sizes seem to naturally be getting smaller, which must mean that my hormones are regulating so I can feel satiated!  So great!

- lost 8lbs, didn't measure myself before so don't know about body composition (although I swear my butt feels smaller)

- my husband is super proud of me, which just makes me feel even better about continuing

- Oh!  And I've been feeling so good that I started going to the gym on day 29!  Today was workout #2- keeping them moderate as to not mess up my body too much. Yay! 


Goals for whole30 2.0:


- DRINK MORE WATER... I don't know why this has been so difficult for me but I just forget, and I bet you I've been somewhat dehydrated for years.  Sorry body... I'm going do better.

- GO TO BED EARLIER.. again, I don't know what my problem is, I have good intentions, and then it doesn't happen. 

- Always pack a compliant meal when I visit friends/family

- Do not give in under any circumstances!  If I am prepared, there is no reason to go off plan. 

- Become stronger... I want those arms that women have where they look thin, but when they move you can tell that there's serious muscle there.  I think it would feel so good to be strong.  I've decided to focus on strength and health instead of weight loss.  Well, that's the goal at least ;)


Today I had:

M1: 3 hardboiled eggs, half an avocado, left over roasted beets and Brussels sprouts with hot sauce, coffee with coconut cream

M2: pulled chicken breast in gravy with green beans and carrots, small banana with spoonful of rainforest butter

Pre-w/o: handful of almonds

M3 post-w/o: chicken leg, roasted potatoes and carrots in chicken gravy

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