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Lokan_V: Reintro + Food Freedom


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I started Whole 30 on Sunday, August 5th and ended on Monday, September 3rd.

I feel fantastic! 

Some noticeable NSVs:

  • Clearer Skin
  • more stable energy throughout the day
  • better sleep
  • decreased inflammation
  • increased self-confidence
  • increased self-love
  • slayed my sugar dragon (Big Bertha)
  • no migraines
  • less headaches

My reintroduction plan got a bit wonky, due to unexpected family obligations and travel. Initially, I had planned to follow the reintroduction to a "T" but now I'll just have to do my best. 

Thanks for joining me!

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Initially I wanted to follow the reintroduction plan outlined in Whole 30.

But unexpected travel and family obligations changed that. 

I'm first introducing grains because my favorite family foods contain rice. I'll have 2 days at home to see how it affects me, then I'll be flying to visit family.

We don't eat a lot of legumes except soy sauce, which I'm not really concerned about (hope I don't eat my words).  I don't like peas and can definitely do without peanut butter if almond butter isn't available. If legumes show up in a meal, I just won't eat them.

I'll also test out dairy, once the traveling is done. I'll have 3 whole days with my family, so I think that's enough to test out dairy. I don't drink milk but used to drink my coffee with flavored creamer. Since Whole 30, I've been drinking it black or with Nutpods pumpkin spice, non dairy, unsweetened creamer.  Again, not really concerned.

I plan to avoid gluten as best as I can. I'm perfectly fine with having a taste of my favorite comfort foods if they make an appearance, since I don't cook them myself at home. It's a treat to have when I'm visiting my family. 

There's this yummy Mexican restaurant that serves my favorite chorizo burrito with egg, potatoes, and cheese. I think it that one case, gluten is totally worth it! Hawaii is seriously lacking in the Mexican food options, so it's a treat for me.

When I get back home, I plan to reintroduce wine because I'll have a wedding to attend that weekend. 

Once back from that trip, I'll enjoy my Food Freedom, by staying Whole 30 compliant as much as I can, and reintroducing when I feel the need.

I wanted to do another Whole 30 round in October, but we'll see. That may be too soon, so I might wait till January.

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Post Whole 30, Day 1 (09/04/2018) Recap:

Breakfast: Oatmeal with cinnamon, almond butter, and bananas.

I don't know why I chose oatmeal. It was suggested as a non-gluten grain to reintroduce and I guess I just latched onto it. I don't even love oatmeal! Breakfast was bad. I should have stuck to my breakfast staple of eggs and a salad, with 1/2 cup of rice. 

Lunch: Carnitas, green salad, cauliflower rice, guacamole, and chips

Oh how I missed my corn tortilla chips! It was sooooo yummy to eat with homemade guacamole. I felt a little "heavier" during the day and a bit bloated. Towards the afternoon I was tired and sluggish. But nothing I couldn't work through.

Dinner: Porkchops, rice, sweet potato, green salad with cucumbers, grapes, and walnuts.

I didn't finish the rice because I just didn't want it. 

Reflection: For me, plain grains (oatmeal and rice) are just not worth it. The chips, in all their salty crunch goodness, were definitely worth it!

No adverse reaction to grains, just a slight "heaviness" in my tummy, and a little fatigue. 


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Post Whole 30, Days 2-7 (09/04-09/10/18) Recap:

On Day 2 I was able to stay Whole 30 compliant, no problem.

No major issues with grains. I realized I just don't like them! Culturally, we eat a lot of rice and I learned that it's just not worth it to me - plain rice has no taste for me and I'd rather fill up on veggies. Food Freedom Win!

Days 3-7 were a lot of traveling and visiting with family.

I tried my best to stay as compliant as I could, but I didn't bother asking about sauces or butter or what was in homemade foods. 

I made sure to eat as many veggies as I could and to avoid snacking and desserts.

There were some days that I stumbled through, and made not so healthy choices, but the choices were mine. And I did learn a few lessons!

Food Freedom Lessons:

Grains make me feel heavy and bloated. Not worth it unless it's Chamorro red rice (my fave!)

Dairy also makes me feel heavy, bloated, constipated. Occasional cheese (in Mexican food) is worth it, most desserts are not.

Alcohol is a huge trigger. I eat all the things and lose my sense of control. No bueno. Felt so crappy the next day! (note - the amount was not more than what I would normally drink, but still. wrong choice for me.)

Evaluation so far: While I'm really enjoying my "food freedom", I want to be able to properly reintroduce foods and evaluate how they affect me. I came back from my trip exhausted, achy, and just BLAH.  I know it's because my lack of sleep and traveling but I can't help but wonder if I would feel my best (or at least better than how I feel now) if I didn't eat food that made me feel crappy. 

On the way home, I had an egg and cheese sandwich w/tomato at the airport. I could have looked harder for something whole 30 but I was tired and by myself with my son and our bags. I was overwhelmed. 

I had an iced black coffee while waiting at the gate. I reached for a sugar packet but put it back, telling myself I didn't need it! WIN!

On the plane I had a Chomps beef stick, freeze-dried strawberries and blueberries, and pistachios. Can't bring fresh fruit/veggies from the mainland to Hawaii, so my options were limited (unless I bought them in the airport, which I did not attempt). Later in the flight I had an RX bar. 

My sugar dragon did not come back with a vengeance, for which I am grateful! I am super mindful of my sugar cravings but since Whole 30, they are a lot easier to ignore (which means I've gotten stronger!).

On the way home from the airport, we ate at Chili's, my son's fave restaurant. I blame it on the lack of sleep, but I had a huge sense of over-confidence in how I would feel. I ordered my usual, pre Whole 30 meal (steak with mashed potatoes, broccoli, draft beer, chips and salsa, shared family dessert). In retrospect, I was probably craving comfort and routine, but took it way too far.

In the past, I would have ate my entire meal, had 1-2 beers, and finished my share of chips, queso, and dessert. Last night, I ate only half my meal, way too many chips, and a couple bites of dessert. I didn't even finish my beer. Not because I felt strong and in control, but because I felt so crappy. 

Today I'm trying my best to stay compliant but because I couldn't grocery shop yesterday, I don't have much on hand. I'm craving veggies and fresh food. I'm happy about that and welcoming that feeling because it means I've made so much progress during Whole 30.

I'm traveling again this weekend for a wedding so my plan is to stay on Whole 30 until the reception. I won't go off the rails, but I'm not going to be super strict about my meals. Initially I planned for an October Whole 30 but will probably start soon after I return from the wedding. My body is craving it!

Thank you for hanging around!

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Day 8, 09/11/2018

Breakfast: 2 scrambled eggs, 1/2 apple w/ almond butter

Lunch: Shrimp salad - greens, strawberries, oranges, avocado, shredded carrots, greens, with garlic & shallot vinaigrette.

Snack: Lacey cookie from Trader Joe's (so good!)

Dinner: Chicken, brussel sprouts, and tomatoes, with compliant ranch dressing.

Reflection: Coming back from my trip, I felt achy and tired, on the verge of a migraine. On this day, I tried to stick to Whole 30 as much as possible. My snack was defintely not compliant, but I wanted to exercise my food freedom. I took it bite by bite, savored each one, eating it very slowly. It was super sweet but so good! In the past I would have ate it quickly and had another (and maybe another!) but I stopped at one, evaluated how I felt, and realized I was done. 

Went grocery shopping for compliant salad dressings, found compliant bacon and chorizo sausage, and organic blackberries on sale. Score!

Husband picked up more fresh fruit and veggies for me. Today (Day 9), I'm sticking to Whole 30 for meals. I thought I'd reintroduce wine this week but I think I'll just wait till the wedding reception and have 1 or 2. I'm still not feeling my best after my trip so I'd rather just take it slow.

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Day 9, 09/12/2018

Breakfast: 3 scrambled eggs, salad with cucumbers, compliant ranch dressing, and a side of blackberries

Lunch: Ahi Taco with sourcream 

Snack: Air-popped popcorn with melted ghee and salt

Dinner: 1 slice of cheese pizza, chicken with brussel sprouts and tomatoes (leftovers from last night)

Reflection: I should not have had that Ahi Taco. It was more like a large burrito and not gluten or dairy free. The fish itself was yummy, lunch was delicious. But shortly after I felt on the verge of a migraine and just.... ill? I don't know if "ill" is the word but seems like my vocabulary is just stuck on "crappy". 

I left work early because of a tropical storm headed our way and I wanted to be sure to pick up my son and get home before any chaos began.

I ordered an air-popper from Amazon and we broke it in yesterday while watching Black Panther. This has been on my list since I started Whole 30 and I was excited to have popcorn again in my life. I used melted ghee instead of regular butter. It was a hit! Usually I microwave a 1-2 bags of popcorn but air-popped was so much better. No waxy fake buttery film - Win!

My husband wanted to order pizza and I agreed, even though I had enough left overs for a good Whole 30 dinner. Cheese pizza was another food I missed dearly while on Whole 30 and was excited to have some again. 

Guys. I only had one slice. It wasn't as yummy as I imagined. I usually order a different crust and eat about 4 slices. But I savored that one, bite by bite. I didn't love it and it didn't make me feel very good.

So I grabbed some left over chicken and had that with veggies. I felt a lot better after that!

I love that I find myself craving veggies and fresh food but in a weird way, I kinda miss the "ease" of just going with the flow and eating spontaneously. I know I can get there eventually and I'll get better with meal planning and exercising my food freedom. I'm just in this space of having finished Whole 30 but still putting in work. Work that I know is totally worth it, and I choose to do it. 

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What a busy weekend!

My cousin got married so we were off island for a few days. 

I wasn't able to eat as clean as I wanted to. Mostly because of limited options and lots of busy-ness. 

I kept my coffee black. Which is so surprising to me, in a good way. I thought I would never like black coffee, but I enjoy it now. It warms my soul :D.

While I am not as intentional as I would like to be with my food choices, I am more aware of what I'm eating. 

After this weekend, I feel achy and tired. I miss that Tiger's Blood!

As soon as we landed at the airport this morning, I told my husband that I can't wait to get back on Whole 30. I can't wait to feel better, have more control, and boost my confidence. I'm going to take about a week to plan and get started right away. No need to wait till October 1st, I'm going to jump in as soon as I can. 

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