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most powerful experience of my life-d20


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A bit about me: F51, sw: 216lbs, day 20, round 1

I am a yo-yo dieter. I have gained and lost, and then gained some more. I have been unhealthy and healthy throughout my life. I have weighed up to 240lbs. I have struggled with maintaining a healthy blood pressure for the last 6 years and was on medication for 2 years, which was horrible. 

My new doctor referred me to the Whole30 and after investigating, studying, and confirming when to start, began on 10/30. This process has been the most powerful experience of my life. And this was especially highlighted when I had to travel for work this past week.

I had been doing extremely well in this new way of eating, managing all aspects, and feeling amazing. I knew I had to travel on 11/14 and was scared out of my mind. I thought for sure I would stress out and starting eating my comfort foods. But I didn't...AT.ALL. How did I do this?

  1. I first planned out what snacks I was going to take with me in case I needed a mini meal or quick go-to snacks. Then I packed those babies! It was more weight to carry around as I was travelling but I asked myself which way was it going to be: more weight in a bag or more weight on my own frame?
  2. Then I imagined myself going through each day making great food choices. Really practicing in my own head what I was going to do when faced with difficult choices or coercion from others.
  3. Travel day one-morning-lunch: no problem, had my travel snacks, water, and black coffee. No worries. Arrived at hotel, met my colleagues. The frustration started as soon as we sat down to the first meal. Everything seemed non-compliant to Whole30. All of the things that make other things taste like candy were included in the meal choices. I had to be strong AND creative. I made good choices, but the difficult thing was the comments that my colleagues were making. I told them about what I was doing with my lifestyle change and instead of just letting me worry about my own food, they were constantly saying things about my meals and where we could and could not eat because I was working on making healthy food choices. They were not being mean, but it was truly getting on my nerves. Their constant dialogue about food was getting annoying. After my annoyance wore off, I started to realize that they might have been a little jealous? or maybe introspective about their own food choices?
  4. Travel day one-evening meal: Here's where it was really rough. They got taco trays and I had to buy a small salad in a plastic container, and a bowl of fruit in a plastic container. I was sooooo bummed out about this. I was watching them eat with envy. I was feeling deprived and super grumpy. I had fn mustard on my salad because there were no compliant dressings. But then my mood shifted as I was eating. They were saying how it wasn't really that good and who knows what was in all of the many many toppings they got on it. Then my body starting getting refueled and my resolve returned. I was feeling strong and clean, not bogged down with crazy additives. Was it the best meal of my life? No way. But I stayed true and felt like I ate real food, I was not bloated and complaining about overeating either. I was just right. They looked at me like I was crazy with my mustard packets and plastic containers, but by the end of the meal, I was looking at them like they were crazy for eating that crap.
  5. Travel day two breakfast: I really needed protein and nothing was literally compliant in this little eatery. I was starving for protein and would have given anything to have boiled eggs or any straight up plain eggs. I finally found an RX bar which was super expensive, but oh well. My friends sat down and had, once again, these amazing looking breakfast sandwiches while I was eating a banana and Rx bar. I was pissed I couldn't eat what they were eating! But then the same thing happened as the night before. They were like.."these sandwiches don't taste as good as they looked in the display case..." and I really started to think about my pre-Whole30 days and how I used to eat without thinking. I began feeling really powerful in my decision making and that I could make healthy food choices despite being in a sugar mecca. I started to believe that I had real control over my food, which I can't remember feeling, ever. I also started thinking that the Whole30 way might be a complete part of my life way beyond 30 days.
  6. Travel day two dinner: Italian restaurant hell. Luckily I was on day 17 and felt like I had gone too far to not eat well. I had prosciutto and fruit and then salmon on broccoli rabe. It was great food, but in this environment I wanted bread, I wanted wine, I wanted, I wanted, I wanted. But again, I held my resolve. I knew that at some day in the future, I was going to have such a wonderful glass of wine with a meal that it would surpass this place. I knew that some day in the future, I would have a lovely after dinner drink that would rock my world, but that this night I was not going to let my Whole30 go. I had made it to day 17 and made so many awesome food choices, I was not going to let this environment, which was lovely and had all of the trappings for over-indulgence to take me over. I HELD STRONG! Now, here's the thing, when you're eating really well, you have time and the state of mind to take a close look at what others are eating. I noticed in their pasta filled bowls that they had very little protein. On my plate I had a giant salmon steak that rocked my world. It made up for not having any eggs that morning! And it was delicious and so big that I was able to take some back to the hotel room and have this awesome protein for the next morning. 
  7. Travel day three dinner: This was a crazy night. The group of us went into the city where specialty food shops were everywhere. We finally agreed upon a place for dinner and I was able to get a hamburger (with lots of raw veggie toppings) and a baked potato! I was so excited to have this. I was a little envious of my dinner companions' food, but not really. I was starting to get the hang of my feelings and of how good I felt after eating. Feeling strong and non-burpy and non-bloaty. What an exhilarating feeling! So this dinner went really well. Then...we starting walking around. It was a sugar coated confectionery crazy town. They got tastes of this and then wanted to get ice cream, I was strong-willed but then something in me kind of snapped, and I told them that I wasn't going to go into those shops with them, that I would be fine in this other shop and they could find me. They were cool with it and completely understood, but I was feeling really deprived at this point and a little unsure of myself. Why was I doing this plan, why couldn't I enjoy these treats? But then I made a deal with myself. I promised myself that when we got back to the hotel I would have a fizzy water with extra lime. I kept telling myself that this was my refreshing treat and that if I was truly hungry I could also have a my travel stash of a nut packet and raisins too. I relished my lime fizzy water and realized I wasn't hungry and did not need my go-to snacks. 
  8. Returning home dinner: I went a little crazy, but was quick to realize what was happening. I was falling back on old binging-like behaviors but with healthy food. The deprivation and anger I felt for the last few days was coming out this night when I returned home. I ate a baked potato with all of my awesome healthy toppings, a whole little container of red raspberries, and then a banana-nut dessert. My state of mind was not relaxed, I was a little bingey. But I was super-conscious of it and thought about how if I was eating unhealthy food how it would have been really detrimental. I realized that this behavior needs to be loved away. I am still not sure how to do this, but at least I recognized it and can see it for what it is. 


Bottom line about travelling for me....

I survived and came out incredibly strong knowing that I can make super-hard choices when in the face of others eating their faces off.

I need to over-plan and envision myself making great choices.

I need to plan the return home better.

I need to have some kind of reward in mind or some kind of self-care that I can focus on during those really tough moments of feeling deprived. 

Overall for me the breakfasts and lunches were not that difficult, but evening meals were extremely soul searching for me. Next time, I hope I can be even more successful and grounded.

I fn did it and am super proud of myself. I will not look back. Goodbye old habits that have screwed up my body!



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