My After Action Report!


aks801

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Before I started my Whole 30, I was very unhappy about my weight, my physical appearance, and my health in general. My self-confidence was shaky at best. My sleep patterns were terrible, I had chronic digestive issues, and any sort of everyday physical activity (from getting in and out of the car or tying my shoes, to exercise or strenuous activity) was difficult. I knew I needed to lose the weight as a precursor to improving my overall lifestyle, especially since I had a “cardiac scare†in the summer of 2011, and since then had only lost about 10 pounds.

During the second week of September I saw a tweet sent by one of our pastors, mentioning that he was doing the Whole 30 and was feeling great. So I looked up the website and started checking it out. What I read really made sense to me and struck some kind of chord, enough so that I committed to really do it, not just “give it a shotâ€. It is this commitment up front that really kept me on plan throughout.

The first 3 days were probably the hardest. I had a few cravings that were fairly strong, had lingering digestive issues, and had headaches. But after that it was largely clear sailing. At the end of the first week I received my first unsolicited comment that it looked like I was losing weight (thankfully it was not the last!). These types of comments really served to encourage me throughout the 30 days, and were a nice bonus. I settled into a new way to look at food, and typically did not “miss†anything that I had cut out. I was pretty successful at eating a combination of proteins/meats, fruits, nuts and vegetables, but probably should have tried more new foods and had more vegetables. I played tennis one day with two of my kids, and found I was more mobile and had more endurance than the last time I had tried to play. I had planned on doing more exercise than I ended up doing, but I imagine it will be easier and more enjoyable to mix this in as I continue to lose weight.

Now that I'm done, I can say without hesitation that this has been an incredible success and one of the best things I have done for myself (and by extension, for my family)! My clothes fit better. My suit jackets are much less tight. My sleeping is better, and my snoring has lessened. I find myself just plain happy a lot of the time. My decision-making and thought process in general are much improved: everything just seems clearer. This may be due to a significant boost in my self-confidence.

I have lost a total of 24 pounds. I had set a goal to increase my maximum single set of pushups by 10, and ended up increasing it by 5. I plan to mix in to my diet some of the foods that were “off planâ€, but in a way that makes sense, such as: stay entirely off soft drinks since I have not missed them at all: mix in some dairy but minimize it, and then only if it does not bring back any bad side-effects; probably enjoy some croutons on salads, as well as pepitas: have some breads but not much: enjoy the rare sweet treat, but keep it REAL rare (have not missed sweets anyway). I will probably weight in once a week just to keep things on track, but will not allow the scale to dictate my plans or actions. There is a pretty long way to go until I reach my target weight and fitness levels, so I will be stepping up my exercise and repeating the Whole 30 plan on a semi-regular basis just as a way to focus on health and keep myself true to sound nutrition principles. And I can tell you, it is going to be a BLAST getting rid of my fat clothes and wearing the fit clothes that are still in my closet, plus getting some new things!

Alan

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