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Hi all,

I am on day 4 of my first Whole30. I have done Paleo before so it wasn't a total shock to me. However, I have basically been a Weight Watchers member for the last 7 years. I lost 75lbs on WW, but I know I was eating a lot of crap.

I actually lost 105lbs in a matter of 16 months on WW back in 2005-2007 and I hit a major plateau. Over the next five years I've been up and down, but gained back 25lbs. I really want to lose 30lbs to get to a healthy weight for my height/body.

I have been bad and trying to count points these first few days of Whole30 and seeing that isn't really going to work. According to WW I am eating too much when I know in fact I am not and that I am eating much healthier.

I guess my question is, which I'm sure many of you can understand is how can I be sure I will lose weight during this process? Should I limit my fruit and nut intake to one serving a day? Should I track my foods? My CrossFit box had me tracking on a 30 day Paleo challenge I did last year.

I know this isn't about weight loss, but that is very important to me too.

Thank you!

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Just do it, and don't worry about the weight loss - it will happen. I lost 20lbs on weight watchers, than hit a major plateau as soon as I started working out more and weight lifting. Took me a long time, but I finally found some fine print about not getting more than 6point plus a day in exercise, and most of your exercise should be low intensity cardio - just not going to cut it for me.

Don't limit anything (aside from the whole30 rules, of course). Eat when you're hungry. Don't eat if you're not. The whole "fat-adapted" thing happens because of what you're eating, not when or how much. I ate every time I was hungry (which was a lot) the first ten days or so, then one day I just wasn't hungry between meals anymore. It's just that awesome.

You know those weeks where you ate way over your points and still lost weight? And those weeks where you stuck strictly to your allowance and the scale didn't budge- or went up? WW works 95% of the time, and I think is a great starting place, but you're so much better than that now - time to move on to something better, like Whole30.

I track my foods only in that I meal plan a week in advance - I know what I'm having for each meal, to ensure I'm always getting meats and vegetables and fats, but I don't really record any "extras" I might have, or serving sizes, or other WW type things.

Try it, and I promise it will work. You aren't supposed to weigh yourself on Whole30, but if you do, stick with it the whole 30 days anyway - it takes the first few weeks for your body to even figure out what is happening. And you'll feel so great by day30 that even if the scale doesn't go down (but it will!) you won't want to go back to eating the way you did before.

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Whether you can track your food really depends on you. Some people who do the Whole30 challenge post their daily meals on the Whole30 log forum. You can choose to do that if you want. But, I want to caution you. I think food logging is great for some people and not great for others. For example, I think its great because if you have problems during your Whole30, a food log can help other forum members and/or moderators troubleshoot what you are going through. However, it can be bad if you are logging for the purpose of counting calories.

In my opinion, and in what I believe is the spirit of the Whole30/Whole9 approach, counting calories hurts your relationship with food. Part of the Whole30 is getting to know your body again, listening to your body to figure out when you are full and hungry.

So, you can track your food with a food log, but if you are doing it to count calories, or anything like that, I would say don't do it.

Maybe a moderator or someone else will join in here, but that's just my opinion. As for your other questions, I would say listen to your body. If you can eat fruit and not use it as a crutch (as in, a dessert, to feed your sugar craving), then eat the fruit alongside your meal. Same with nuts. They are a good source of fat but for some people (me included) they are no-breaks food so I stay away. Good luck with your Whole30.

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Danielle, first of all, losing 105lbs doing ANYTHING is awesome, so congratulations!

I know you know that this isn't about weight loss, but let me just reiterate:

This isn't about weight loss. Seriously. This is about changing your relationship with food. Regardless of where you are with your weight loss goals, the most important thing here, for the next 30 days is to stop/fix/change obsessive behavior and stressing about food. Food SHOULDN'T DO THAT TO PEOPLE!

Take the 30 days and trust the meal templating guidelines. Do NOT try to outsmart them. M&D have built them with their audience's number 1 goal in mind, even though that's not the point. Thinking you know better is a surefire way to sabotage yourself and your goals.

Focus on enjoying your food and not worrying about every calorie. Stop counting points!

Go for some walks, lift something heavy.

RELAX!

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I also have a lot of history with both WW and calorie counting apps so when I started my Whole30 it was very difficult to trust the process. I scoured these pages looking for an idea of how many pounds I would lose and never finding it. I decided just to arm myself with the meal planning template and hope for the best. I will tell you, I lost 15 pounds and 12 inches, including 4 from my waist and 2 from each thigh. BUT, more importantly I found a new healthier relationship with food. Trust the process. Eat like they tell you to eat and forget about tracking, counting, obsessing over how different this is than what you used to do, and DO NOT weigh in. It is so worth it. Trust the process and you will learn so much. Best of luck!

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Thank you for asking!

Most people lose weight during a Whole30. Eating only healthy foods tends to make that happen. However, the Whole30 is not a weight loss program, it is a health improvement program. It really works best if you focus on trying to improve your health and let the weight take care of itself. Therefore, it takes some trust on your part that this program is good for you and will yield good results. Unfortunately, if you focus on weight loss, you can mess up your Whole30 and either slow weight loss or hurt your health.

The key to this program is eating as much as is recommended in the meal template. If you try to speed weight loss by eating less food or less fat, it interferes with your hormones achieving a normal, healthy balance and often backfires. Here is a link to the meal template... http://whole9life.com/book/ISWF-Meal-Planning-Template.pdf

Do not count points, track calories, or weigh your food. The replacement for that behavior is following the meal template and paying attention to your feelings. If you try to do both, you will fail at following the meal template and paying attention to your feelings. They may not seem your best choice now, but they really are what works for a lifetime of health and happiness.

I lost weight with this program starting in May of 2010. I lost 2 pounds per month for 15 months in a row. I ate lots of food and was never hungry. I made the mistake of trying to speed the process by skipping some meals. Back in 2010, stepping on a scale was not forbidden. What I discovered is that I sometimes gained weight on days I skipped meals. I don't understand why. I also tried to speed weight loss by exercising more than usual. I would add a 5K run to my ordinary workout. That did not make me lose weight faster either. Finally after a few months, I settled down and just followed the program. I kept losing weight until I was down 30 pounds. I went from 215 to 185. 185 was my goal weight. I wondered if I would keep losing weight when I reached it. Curiously enough, I got down to 184 one day, but never lost more. I kept eating exactly the same, but stopped losing weight.

Today, I weigh 195, but I am much more muscular than I was before. I have not had my body fat measured, but I suspect I remain as lean as ever, but when I started lifting heavy weights, my chest, arms, and legs got bigger. This program really works if you will let it. Just give it time.

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Also, to echo something I said on another thread: I'm on my 2nd Whole30. The first one, I couldn't let go of tracking, and I tracked in a super detailed way. The Whole30 worked (I got the sleep benefits, my guts cleared up, I felt great physically for the most part, and I even lost some weight), but I was still worrying about food in a way that took up a lot of my time and I'm sure contributed to anxiety. This time, I'm just keeping a very simple log here on the forum -- just a list of what I eat at each meal. I'm about 8 days from the end, and I feel even better than I did last Whole30, and for the first time in YEARS, I have almost no anxiety about what I'm eating. I don't think about what to eat next. I don't worry that I ate too much or too little or the wrong thing. I'm not perfect every day (ie, sometimes I get slightly off template), but I feel confident that my days average out to eating really, really well.

Basically, I just want to reiterate: Trust the program. It's worth it.

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I also have a lot of history with both WW and calorie counting apps so when I started my Whole30 it was very difficult to trust the process. I scoured these pages looking for an idea of how many pounds I would lose and never finding it. I decided just to arm myself with the meal planning template and hope for the best.

This is me to a T! I've been doing WW for 13 years and hovering over the last 10lbs but not budging, no matter how low of calories I eat or how much I exercise = SO FRUSTRATING!

When I heard about whole30 I'd been doing Paleo for about a month and feeling better than I had in years. My BFF completed her W30 and I thought, "why can't I?" I'm starting it today and one of the biggest moves for me has been to remove the calorie counting app I have of my phone and iPad. I live by those things. Even tho I eat healthy foods on paleo, I couldn't help but want to stay under 1,300 calories; which I'm sure is why I didn't see any real changes there either.

Although I'm doing this 95% for health related reasons, I'm excited for the bonus of losing some inches, even if the number on the scale doesn't budge; so make sure you take measurements :)

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When I started my Whole 30 I feared I was eating too many calories but I kept at it. What I found out quickly was that now that I was fueling my body with such great foods, my body started to ask me for more/fewer calories depending on what it needed. Our bodies really do know what they need. If you give your body proper nutrition it will tell you what it needs. You just have to listen.

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Okay, not to beat a dead horse or anything, but do you think it is possible to eat too much protein (and possibly fat) on this program so as not to lose weight? I am on day 8 of my first Whole30 and of course have not weighed myself but I have incorporated this plan into a long-term plan to get healthier and lose about 30 lbs. So far I have been really focusing on the food (been spending A LOT of time in the grocery store and kitchen!) and was pretty sluggish for the first week so only got in one workout.

I was at my mom's for dinner on the weekend and they made me a Whole-30 compliant dinner of roast beef, lobster tails cooked in ghee, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, and salad. But my stepdad chimed in with 'a calorie is a calorie' and he thinks he knows everything about nutrition and was giving me a bit of a hard time, saying "Oh sure, cooking your food in fat seems really healthy"! He hasn't read any of the material and I was too annoyed with his tone to explain it to him during dinner, but it got under my skin a little bit and I have been wondering if I have been eating too much meat or taking too much liberty with the coconut oil. Of course, this dinner is not a typical meal of what I have been eating. I have been making lots of things from Well Fed following the recipe exactly (zucchini pad thai, char sui, creamed kale, mashed cauliflower, etc., plus things like spaghetti squash and chicken breast). I have looked at the meal template as well but I just wonder, since I obviously have food issues, have I just replaced my old bad habits with over-indulging in meat and approved fats instead? I have been trying to eat enough to sustain me to the next meal, and I haven't had that "too full" feeling since I started this, but I just wonder if it is something I should be trying to tone down or what?

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I'm struggling with this too. I never counted calories until a few years ago when I started on NutriSystem. That program worked great for me as far as weight loss, but I felt the worst I ever have in my life (not because I got too skinny; I think it was all the additives in the food). It left me with a serious calorie-counting addiction too. I just completed my first W30 and didn't really lose any weight. Now I'm trying to figure out where to make cuts...are my protein portions too large? Too many olives, nuts, fruit? I would love to have cut and dry portion recommendations...like 'eat 4 oz of protein at each meal.' I know they won't tell us that here, and I understand why...but I still find myself weighing my meats sometimes because I don't trust my eyes. If I could stop stressing about weight loss, it might come easier. But it's like saying..."don't think about a blue elephant." Of course that's all you're going to think about!

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I'd like to comment on one of the earlier questions about fruit and nuts. All over the forum there are posts about not relying on fruit and nuts because there are more nutritious sources for those vitamins, protein and fat. And for many of us (me too), they tend to be "food with no brakes". This round I am eating one serving of fruit per day and only eat nuts "in" things-never by themselves (and no dried fruit). I do not snack at all. Ever. It seems to be going well-better than either of the last 2.

I understand the fear of "eating too much" - but eventually your body gets used to being fed such healthy stuff and asks for less. Just let it happen.

The world is full of people like your stepdad missnikka28-the best defense is just to let them see for themselves how fabulous you look and feel, and eventually they'll be asking you for the website. :)

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Thanks to everyone for the responses! It's hard to change mentality after years of calorie counting, measuring, tracking, etc. I am going to try and just listen to my body and eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm full. I know I'm only on day four but I could swear my digestive system already feels happier and lighter!

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I hear you!! I'm a chronic calorie counter from doing all the programs I can find but I'm on day 6 so far and am strangely enjoying not counting. I still feel like I should be, and occasionally freak out by thinking "OMG how many calories did that cost me??", but I'm trying not to and ride the wave.

But I have to say 6days in and I'm already considerably less bloated than I used to be. The 3pm tireds are killing me though, but i'm hoping they'll level out next week sometime :)

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I just finished my first W30, and while I haven't weighed myself yet because I want to extend it by another two weeks, I thought I would pop in here with my comments. I don't feel right now like I have lost much weight, maybe none at all. However, I have come from years of weighing, measuring, counting, tracking every single thing that I put into my mouth. I ate every two hours. I also wore a Bodymedia device for two years, balancing my intake with my output. I never went a single day without strapping that thing onto my arm. I wore myself out with exercise, which is why I ended up here. I brought on some gastrointestinal issues simply because I wouldn't stop.

Now, here I am 30 days later, and loving the fact that I am not so anal about everything. I have cut my exercise in half and I am not so tired and sore anymore. After the first couple of weeks, I have enjoyed the freedom from all the tracking. And now, just in the past week or so, my body is starting to tell me it doesn't need so much food. I am actually learning how to listen to it! And it is giving me the correct signals.

Learning to listen to my body is a totally new experience for me, and I have to say...it is pretty cool!

(Of course, I still hope I have lost weight when I do weigh myself in a couple of weeks.)

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MY TWO CENTS...I finished my W30 a week ago. I posted several places that I was sure I was going to be the only one to GAIN weight. I'm 59, no health problems, crossfit and a pretty healthy paleo lifestyle individual. I HATED giving up the red wine though but have been able to reintroduce it and the last 2 nights have had but one glass (read that as 'miracle'). But during the 30 days, I just knew I was going to gain weight and at my age, with as hard as I work at it, I just couldn't stand the thought. I looked at the fat I was consuming (lard!, macadamia nuts, cocunut flakes, bacon etc.) and I thought I'm going to gain 20 lbs. Plus, even though it didn't change my eating habits that much it obviously did enough so that for a full 2 weeks I had the 'KILL ALL THE THINGS' attitude. But hang in there I did.

I lost 7 pounds and 1 1/2 inch off my waist. I'm very happy for what it taught me about my eating, myself and certain habits I had not noticed.

I guess I'm saying...hang in there and follow the plan.

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I was a crazy counter as well. Not only every little morsel that went into my mouth, but every single activity I did (GoWearFit user here!) and every little measurement I could possibly take (ie, measuring tape and body fat with calipers every week, weight every day). I did this for years and without the results I wanted. I lived the 800/800 life for two whole months (800 calories per day, 800 minutes of vigorous exercise a week) out of desperation. I thought I was healthy and that I felt great, but I had NO idea how far off I really was...

Aug of 2011, I went paleo and learned to stomach fat again. And slowly but surely, I learned to let go of the measurments. By the time I found Whole30, I was fairly comfortable without counting but not without weighing. I struggled a lot the first two weeks but somewhere in week three it was like someone opened all the shades in a darkened room. All of a sudden I wasn't hungry all the time, I realized I was bringing home all the snacks I'd packed, and I had zero desire to step on the scale. And when a friend asked me to count my calories/ratios for a day because she was curious, I did and it actually pissed me off. I didn't want to. I was freed!!

That was last June. I haven't counted a calorie (or even had the desire to) since!

Trust the process. Let go. Whole30 will get you there if you let it.

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Thanks for all the supportive responses everyone :) Day 12 today and I am definitely enjoying the program now that I have simplified my cooking a little and I can see results like feeling less bloated. I've already received a few comments on my 'glowing' skin, too!

I am also not hungry between meals and have been bringing back home all my snacks because I just don't need them.

I was never a 'tracker-addict' but I did it for a month before starting this W30 and it is definitely more comfortable not to have to track!

I am still struggling to add in more exercise but today is another opportunity!

I will just trust the process and my stepdad will be eating his words :)

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Good morning. I'm on day 10 of my Whole30. I did have to throw away my scale so I would not weigh myself; the temptation was so great! However, the book has asked the questions, "do your clothes fit better, are your rings looser?" Well when I look at these two questions the answer to the first is "No, my clothes are the same and question number two, my rings no longer fit at all!" My rings will not even go over the knuckle of the ring finger anymore, very discouraging. 

What am I doing wrong???

I did learn the multivitamin had rice powder as a coating (discovered on day 7), now I have discontinued the supplement.  I have reviewed and re-reviewed my food record and I cannot find any non-compliant foods.

Please help!

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You might not be doing anything wrong. It's a Whole30, not a Whole9-and-a-10th-morning. 

That said, some thoughts: are you drinking enough water and sufficiently salting your food? Those are usually the two biggies when it comes to retaining water. 

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Thank you for responding so quickly. I am feeling very frustrated this morning, for multiple reasons beyond the Whole30. I'm pretty sure I'm getting enough water, I drink 1.5 to 2 liters a day. As far as salt, I do not add salt to anything. I have hypertension (high blood pressure)  so salt (sodium) is something I have restricted for over 30 years.

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2 hours ago, Walkswithdogs said:

Thank you for responding so quickly. I am feeling very frustrated this morning, for multiple reasons beyond the Whole30. I'm pretty sure I'm getting enough water, I drink 1.5 to 2 liters a day. As far as salt, I do not add salt to anything. I have hypertension (high blood pressure)  so salt (sodium) is something I have restricted for over 30 years.

When you remove processed and packaged foods from your diet and switch to whole fresh fruit, veggies, fat and protein, you remove about 98% of the sodium in your diet.  While restricting additional salt to your diet when you eat a standard american diet is recommended, if you remove those sources of sodium, you do have to replace it - our bodies require sodium.  It is our recommendation to salt your food to taste - it will be a tough one for you having been in the habit of avoiding salt for 30 years.

If you take a look at the timeline, you're actually right in the period of 'Holy Gossling, my pants are TIGHTER??' (https://whole30.com/2013/08/revised-timeline/).  Our bodies do adjust as we change things and it can be frustrating when you feel you're doing everything perfectly and things aren't quite going your way but remember this is a jouney, not a sprint.

If you like, post a few days of your food and meal timing (be specific about what fruits, veggies, fat, protein, portion sizes, etc) and we can see if something stands out.

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