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Starting today (17th Jan) for the umpteenth time

Magda Walędzik

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Hello from Poland :)

I'm really embarrassed to start another "starting today" topic, because I started multiple times but never finished. I was even thinking of creating a new account here to "start clean", but I decided not to - I think all my previous failures to complete Whole30 may turn into a motivator to finally toughen up and do this.

I have eaten grain free for some time now and noticed it makes me feel a lot better, BUT I'm a sucker for sweets, so I have some dark chocolate, paleo muffins etc. almost daily. So, even though my body feels better, my relationship with food is not improving at all...

Someone once wrote that you have to have a clear goal of your Whole30, because it's too hard when you enter it without something to focus on. After all my failed attempts I agree with it 200%. So, my main goal is to achieve a healthy attitude to food. This is something I've struggled with for as long as I remember and I'm so ready to be over it...

I also want to improve my body composition. I don't care so much about numbers. I stepped on the scale a few days ago and the number was greater (quite a lot) than my preconceived "ideal" weight, but surprisingly I didn't really care. Back then when I was at my "ideal" weight, I did chronic cardio and "strength" training with 2lbs dumbbells (this is not a joke although I realize it sounds like one ;)). Now I do CrossFit, lift my body weight and climb occasionally, so I actually have some muscles that are heavy. But I'm proud of it :) and fully intend to develop even more and maybe get even heavier, who knows ;)

More stable moods, less anxiety, better sleep and clear skin would all be very appreciated too :) but as I said, I will consider it a success if after the 30 days I don't freak out if I'm out of chocolate or bananas or nut butter and I don't treat food (sweet food to be exact) as a reward after my long and tiring day...

So... here's to the next 30 (actually 29.5 ;)) days. I'm more scared than excited, but I have a feeling this time I really can do this :)

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I wish you the best of luck! I really like the goal you have set for yourself - so many peopl focus only on the weight coming off or losing inches, and they forget that the foundation of the program is to change your relationship with food. The rest is just icing on the cake, or in our case, guacamole on the eggs :)

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Thanks for your replies :)

So, my day 1 is over and it wasn't bad... I had a sweet potato, 3 eggs and some coconut flakes for breakfast, then a piece of baked fish (with coconut oil and shredded coconut - I'm becoming a coconut freak ;)) and sauerkraut with olive oil. Just as I suspected, the lunch was a bit too small, so I bought an apple and a bag of hazelnuts for a snack when I left the office. Not one but two small victories here - first, I didn't eat nut butter straight from the jar (I have a jar in the office fridge and I was contemplating eating it when I started feeling hungry) AND I also didn't eat the whole bag of nuts - just a handful :) And then there was dinner. It was essentially a warm salad that was a result of cleaning my fridge, but ended up being SO GOOD: broccoli, a small avocado, some smoked salmon, an egg, a big handful of spinach and some home made dried tomatoes. And I had a few chunks of dried mango afterwards. I also had 2 coffees, one black and one with coconut milk and tea/water as needed.

Now I'm off to cook a ton of food for days 2, 3 and maybe 4 ;) Have a very nice evening :)

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Magda, I can totally relate to what you're saying! The mental aspect of the Whole30 is the most difficult part for me. Clear, specific, attainable, written goals are critical to maintaining focus, particularly once the "honeymoon period" is over. For me, this happens about day 4, lol. It's really helpful to be able to have that pre-prepared positive reinforcement available since it's really, really difficult to remember why I'm committed to the Whole30 when my husband's Cadbury Dairy Milk bar is calling my name :)

Have you thought about your previous Whole30s as learning experiences instead of failures? It takes practice to change ingrained habits!

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Thanks Carolina :) I'm trying to look at my previous unfinished (rather than failed ;)) Whole30s as an experience to learn from and succeed this time, but I generally struggle with the concept that I don't have to be instantly great at everything I try and succeed with all my efforts... I had this problem at school, at work, with my fitness (looking at people who are better than me as an inspiration rather than feeling like a failure compared to them) etc. But I'm working on it :)

Anyway, day 2 done :)

I had some roasted chicken with apples, coconut oil and some seasonings plus cauliflower and sweet potato puree for breakfast. Then I had a snack of carrots and cashew butter, because breakfast didn't hold me long enough (hmmm... I can't really see myself eating more in terms of volume in one sitting, especially in the morning. Maybe I should add more fat - I need to figure it out)

Lunch was green beans with more roasted chicken, home made pesto, olives and tomatoes. Then more carrots + cashew butter combo as a snack / pre-workout meal (I know it's not a great option but that's what I had available...)

Dinner was basically a repetition of breakfast + one egg and some celery stalks, because I was so starving after the WOD that I couldn't wait longer than 4 minutes it tool to heat up leftovers in the microwave ;)

All in all, not a bad day. I have to find a way to make my meals big/sustaining enough to avoid snacking or, when I need a snack, find better options than nut butter.

I feel quite OK, had some headache in the afternoon, but nothing dramatic and it could just as well be caused by crappy weather.

Have a nice evening/day/night, depending on your time zone ;)

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Hi Magda!

Wow is your story familiar!! A lot about the fitness but even more since I tried all through last week to start my W30, however the chocolate cravings were intolerable (oh my chocolate demon had me where he wanted). I gave in with high class choices, who could say no? And that piece of toast.... who knew it would be so irresistible on the third attempt?

Of course, since learning about the Whole9life, I am in such a better place. I eat primarily paleo, feel less hungry, more satisfied (that says a lot since I tend to eat and snack a lot of calories throughout the day). But I am resolved to complete the W30. So I set my start date for Monday Jan 21.

Please keep posting!!

You may not see it, but your diligence is inspiring.

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Sooo, today is my Day 4 and I have to say I'm proud of myself for yesterday. It was not an easy day. First, my cat got a bit sick so I was worried. Then I had to survive a visit to my parents (why aren't you eating potatoes? you're not fat, why don't why want dessert? etc.). However, I was 100% a good girl and we even spent quite a nice afternoon :) Then I drove across the country (well, not really, but about 200 km ;)) which is a huge thing for me, because, as ridiculous as it may seem to you US people, I'm still learning to drive at the ripe old age of 30. It was snowing like hell 90% of the way and I still didn't kill myself or anyone else and the car was in one piece ;) Go me!

The purpose of this winter wonderland roadtrip was to get another cat from the breeder. Well, it turned out that the other cat is also a bit sick AND she really hates my "old" cat. She literally roars at him (he is very friendly). Any suggestions from cat owners on how to make them at least tolerate each other are very welcome (I know, totally unrelated, but still ;))

Well, we made it home well past midnight, found out that the cats have to spend the night separated, got it sorted out and I had "dinner" about 1:30 AM... I know, far from ideal, bu through this craziness i STILL managed to be 100% compliant.

Now day 4 began and it's going to be a challenge as well, cause both my parents AND in laws are visiting at different times somewhat unexpectedly. I'd better clean the house or they may have heart attack upon entering. See you later :)

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Day 4 done. It was a tough one, but I survived...

I had cauliflower and sweet potato pure with 4 small fried eggs for breakfast. And then just before I was going to have lunch my parents arrived and we had... well... a heated discussion. When they left, I REALLY wanted some wine, but I had a salad for lunch which finally happened around 3.30 PM, so I was starving. After the salad I had a classic emotional eating episode - I had a banana with hazelnut butter. It was good (of course), but I felt a bit guilty afterwards. Then my in laws came over and we had quite a nice evening :) I made a compliant dinner plus roasted potatoes for them. I didn't have the dessert which they brought and didn't drink any alcohol (which I'm afraid made them think I was pregnant :P)

Now they are gone and I feel empowered by staying compliant despite being really tempted to just have that wine...

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Day 5 done :)

Breakfast: Like yesterday - 4 eggs + cauliflower and sweet potato puree and a coffee with coconut butter

Lunch: a salad of chicken fried in coconut oil with salt, pepper and nutmeg, fresh spinach, cherry tomatoes, raisins and nuts with a dressing made of orange juice, walnut oil, balsamic vinegar and ginger - yum

Snack/pre WO: apple with hazelnut butter (the sweet-ish snack proved to be the best idea ever since todays WOD was running, running and more running

Dinner: a salad of spinach, broccoli, hard boiled eggs, pork roast, home made pesto, cherry tomatoes and olives

Somewhere during the day there was another coconut milk coffee.

Today I thought a bit about whether I see any changes in how I feel... I didn't have the low carb flu/hangover or "kill all the things" syndrome. The only negative physical symptom so far was an epic headache on day 3. I usually avoid meds for common headaches, but this time I had to take ibuprofem to make it stop. I also feel a bit tired/sleepy today, but that can be easily explained (the cats screaming lice crazy all night. Other than that I feel pretty normal.

I noticed a difference in my hunger. It's not even that I get hungry less often, but my hunger is more gradual. I notice that I'm starting to feel hungry and then I can go on with what I'm doing for an hour or so until I get REALLY hungry and I have to eat, but still I don't have this "I have to eat now or I will pass out" feeling that I used to have.

I don't have any particular cravings other than fruit sometimes, but I noticed that whenever I crave fruit I usually just need water.

My stomach also seems flatter, which is good, but my skin actually got worse. I hope that it just has to get worse to get better.

I think that my anxiety maybe diminished a little.

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Day seven done, although it was tough again...

I had baked fish + sweet potato for breakfast and then a huge salad (chicken, avocado, spinach, tomato, olive oil, maybe something else that I forgot...) for lunch. I snacked on a grapefruit and a spoonful of hazelnut butter. and then I had sweet potato and eggs (all mashed together) with some coconut flakes for dinner.

Dinner was too big and I felt too full afterwards. It really happened for the first time during my Whole30.... Then there was an emergency vet trip and a power outage in my house - fantastic... The power is still not fully back, but thank goodness that heaters are working, because it's about -15*C outside... So I took a day off and am waiting for the electrician to hopefully fix it.

Unfortunately my stress management totally sucks. I'm currently facing a very sad family situation that I can't influence at all, My grandma is terminally ill and can basically pass away any moment. Needless to say, it's killing me and I'm probably swimming in cortisol, but I can't help it, I'm not a yoga master who can go into nirvana under any circumstances... However, I find that I'm coping with it a lot better than I thought I would. I don't know whether it's related to diet or me being generally more mature and stronger than I thought, but I'll take it. On a related note - any suggestions on how to handle a dinner after the funeral service? I feel it's a bit different from a party or a weekend get-together and I want to be extra careful to respect everyone's feelings, but I want to remain compliant, because I definitely don't think this meal will be worth breaking the rules and I can show compassion and unity with my family in other ways than by eating a mediocre dinner.... Another problem is that I have a history of disordered eating and if I just tell that I decided to give up bread, grains, dairy etc. everyone will go crazy about my alleged anorexia... So far I've basically kept my Whole30 secret from anyone but my husband.

Some physical changes/stuff that I noticed

  • I look leaner, particularly around by stomach, which is awesome. I put on my "control pants" yesterday - a pair of jeans that I bought last year and that have become so snug that I could barely button them up. They are a bit looser now :) I'm really tempted to check my weight, but I'm not going to touch the scale until day 31
  • My skin looks terrible at the moment. I haven't had so many breakouts since I was 15 or so... Hopefully it will get better...
  • I'm warm when most people are cold. I noticed and had it pointed out on several occasions that I wear a t-shirt when "normal" people wear sweaters.
  • Apparently my breath isn't fantastic :( I brush my teeth after meals, but I'm not sure it's enough. Did anyone else have this problem? What did you do?
  • My energy levels are more even. Even if I don't sleep a lot (combine thinking of your dying grandma with a screaming cat and another sick cat AND a power outage that was cause by God knows what and you have a recipe for my "restful" sleep last night :P) I'm able to cruise though the day without napping at my desk. I'm really grateful for that, because I used to be downright embarrassed when I couldn't keep my eyes open after my lunch break...

Whew... That was a long one. Thanks for reading :) I hope you're having a great Whole30 experience :)

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Day eight in a nutshell

  • Electricity is back (yay!)
  • Cat still sick
  • I stayed on track though all my meals were kind of blah
  • My sleep sucks because of the cat coughing all the time...

I think I'm losing a lot of weight or at least inches - some of my pants fall off my butt, but I still resist stepping on the scale. I also noticed that within last 2 days I was unable to finish several meals. They looked rather small on the plate, but I got full about half way through... Time to start Day 9. TGIF...

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Soooo, Day Ten officially started. I kind of can't believe I made it so far ;)

Yesterday my energy levels were very stable - equal to zero all day ;) I was literally falling asleep in the office. I don't know whether it was related to somewhat more carbs in my food yesterday or less than perfect sleep the previous night. Anyway, I came home and promptly hit the sack.

I woke up somewhat early today (7:20 AM is very early on a Saturday in my books) because of the cats who are both getting better and decided to do some hunting on my bed. Oh well, since I was already up, I decided to go to crossfit earlier than planned. I had beef, apple and onion hash for breakfast and a coffee with coconut milk. Somehow it turned out to be the perfect pre-workout breakfast. I wasn't hungry until lunch, but also didn't feel it rolling around my stomach during the WOD.


The WOD was really nice - challenging, but it didn't kill me. It reminded me that my pullups suck though :P So do my double unders. Oh well...

After the WOD I got home and made a post-WO snack/meal. I wanted something creamy, so I blended the following: 1 banana, 1/2 avocado, 2 bunches of parsley, 1 carrot, 2 eggs (raw - I sometimes eat raw organic eggs and so far I've survived ;)), a pinch of salt and some vanilla extract. Then I sprinkled it a bit too generously with shredded coconut and cashews. Soooo gooood :) I also had another coffee.

I think my house needs some (or a lot of) cleaning, so I'm off do a mop and vacuum cleaner WOD ;)

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I feel like my breath is worse now since I'm not chewing gum or using mints. I just have a travel toothbrush in my work backpack and brush my teeth a little bit after a meal! If I ever feel hungry when I shouldn't be eating more food, brushing my teeth usually curbs that, if only because I don't want to re-brush my teeth haha!

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Than you. I'm more or less at peace with Grandma's passing. She had a long and full life and passed away without much pain which is something to be thankful for in her illness.

I've stayed on track with my food (though that banana with nut butter was not really needed. I really shouldn't expect I'll find much comfort after someone's death in a piece of fruit...) - no wine, no whisky with coke... I've managed to squeeze in crossfit 3-4 times a week and most of the time I'm really pleased with how I do at WODs.

As I'm approaching the halfway mark (day 13 today), I decided to make another substantial change. I put my nut butters into the freezer and they are going to stay there until day 31 (maybe I'll make an exception and use a tbsp or so when I finally bring myself to make Paleo Pad Thai ;)). One of my goals was to reduce snacking on fruit and nuts by at least 50% and so far I reduced it by 0%, so it's time to tackle this one.

I kind of got used to this way of eating. I've never had any major cravings, maybe because I didn't eat "commercial" junk food - fast food meals, chips pop tarts etc. before. My eating was pretty clean to begin with, so I "only" had to take out sweets, wine and occasional dairy. I do miss chocolate and wine sometimes, but dairy - not so much.

Now I have the dinner after Grandma's memorial service to survive on Friday. I don't really have an option to choose my food - everyone will be served the same dish. Let's hope people will be concerned with other things and won't pay much attention to what I do or don't eat...

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I'm sorry about your loss, and glad to know your Grandma lived a long life and died with no pain. (As for the dinner, I strongly suspect no one will notice a thing. I've had experiences of communal eating where I ate radically differently than those around me, or not at all; and as long as I was participating in the event that included the food - talking, showing interest in the conversations around me, etc. - no one even noticed. I would hope that at a family member's funeral folks would know to allow you to eat or not, as you choose.)

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Sooo... I'm really dragging today. I feel tired, sleepy, borderline dizzy and just plan blah... I took a rest day from crossfit, which I'd panned anyway, because, as expected, my shoulders are falling off after yesterday's WOD. I'm craving chocolate and the flipping nut butter that I stuck into the freezer this very morning... I'm cranky and emotional and I feel that maybe I'm experiencing a somewhat delayed "kill all the things" phase.

BUT my dinner tonight was delicious :) I actually "invented" it 2 days ago, but I love it and will probably have it at least several times during the remaining 16 days (and later too :)) So, I made a sushi salad: 2 handfuls of greens, 1-2 crumbled nori sheets, some smoked salmon, some cooked shrimp, 1 small avocado, some vinegar and voila ;) Took about 2,5 minutes to make and was awesome :) Would have been even more awesome with some soy sauce, but.... ;)

Another thing is that I'm thirsty ALL the time... I don't count my water ounces or anything like this, but I drink A LOT (1 coffee + tea/water throughout the day), definitely more than I used to drink before I started this W30 business. Has any of you experienced this as well?

Have a nice evening :)

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Uhmmm... So I failed on the nut butter front :( Just had 1/2 banana with nut butter after my lunch... And I'll probably have more today as a snack (I'm going to visit my parents and I'm not sure what they have for dinner, so I'd rather not go super hungry, because I might cave and have something totally "forbidden"). BUT as of tomorrow, I'm implementing better snacks policy and reducing nut butter consumption to (almost) zero. Oh man, life is hard :P

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I'm officially halfway done. I finished day 15 today. I'm proud of myself, cause honestly I didn't expect to make it so far ;)

Now that I'm here, things seem more or less normal. I no longer spend time freaking out about what I'm going to eat. Food is just food, primarily fuel for our bodies. I used to treat food more like a pleasure, a reward, something that i HAD to enjoy. When I had a less than awesome meal, I was deeply frustrated and had a feeling of a wasted opportunity. It sounds crazy, but really a bad lunch (or not really bad but not great) could ruin my day. Now I eat to live and don't live to eat. I understand that not every meal has to be a culinary masterpiece. Sometimes when I'm in a rush or just lazy, I'll have a can of tuna,a tomato and/or some other random veggies and I'm done. No planning, no over-thinking, no regret that the meal didn't lie up to my hopes...

Tomorrow is going to be a challenging day - it' my Grandma's funeral and lunch/dinner after it. I'm 99% sure there won't be one thing that's Whole30 friendly (well... there will be tea and probably water ;)), so I have to bring my own snacks. Let's hope I'll manage to navigate it somehow.

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