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One More Time Again


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I originally tried the Whole30 about a month ago with my friend/coworker. After two weeks I felt great--lost seven pounds and had more energy-- but I could not stop thinking about drinking a beer and eating chocolate. I consumed my thoughts for three full days until I finally gave in. My friend stuck with it, lost 15 pounds, and is still doing the program more or less after her 30 days were finished. I, on the other hand, returned to my diet of eating out, drinking, and sporadically binging on sugary/starchy foods.

This year has been a world wind: I graduated from college, ended my career as a college athlete, moved to the South (FRIED FOOD EVERYWHERE!), and started teaching in a low-income, low-performing school district. I was completely overwhelmed with my new, stressful job and long working hours and I have always been one to eat for comfort. Eating out after work--unhealthy, overly-processed and fried food--became one of my only escapes. Plus, I was no longer practicing 4 hours a day. Actually, I was hardly working out at all. In the course of two months I gained ten pounds.

I am finally working out 3-4 times a week again and I just ran a half marathon, but my relationship with food is still unhealthy. This is something I have been acutely aware of for a long time. Food and I have a love-hate relationship. I am a tall, athletic and large-framed person. I'm never going to be a size 0 and that is a fact I have mostly come to terms with. I am hoping that doing the Whole30 and seeing it through will help me detach from food and live a happier, more balanced life.

Why will this time be different? Well, for one I actually subscribed to the plan, so that adds a level of accountability. I also want to continue to log about the experience and read other people's posts. journaling is something I used to often that I rarely do any more and I think that will help me not just with the Whole30, but with leading a more balanced life overall. It's not just about food or weight. I want to be a healthier person in every aspect of my life, from my outlook to the things that I put into my body.

What are my goals in this new endeavor?

1. STICK TO THE WHOLE30 PLAN THE FULL 30 DAYS! (maybe more?)

2. Log about it daily-- even if it's just writing what I ate

3. Return to my pre-teaching weight (i.e. lose 10 pounds)

4. Eat out a maximum of 1 meal a week (this is my weakness!)

5. Work out 4 days per week (already doing this for the most part)

Is this too much for my starting goals? I tend to have pretty high, and some would say unrealistic, expectations of myself.

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Personally, I'd axe the weight-related goal. It's not that you won't lose weight during Whole30, but that focusing on weight often makes successes seem like failures. What if you followed Whole30 to the letter, worked out 4 days a week for the whole stretch, ate out once per week, and journaled about your process but lost no weight? To my mind, that is still a success, because eating healthfully and working out are good things to do regardless of what the scale says. However, with the weight goal thrown it, it gets really easy to ONLY see that number and use it as a summary of success or worth.

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Thank you CAK911! That's a great recommendation. I often focus on weight instead of the more important issues-- taking care of myself physically and taking care of my psyche. First day really went off without a hitch, other than my roommates offering me beer and chocolate. They think I am crazy for doing this.

Tomorrow is a really important day for my student's because it is our last day to review before our End of Course Exam. It's going to be stressful and that's when I always want to eat bad foods the most.

To add another emotional layer, my parents have just told me they are getting a divorce. It's not something I am prepared to give much thought to right now. However, I know it will sneak up on me when I least expect it and when it does I cannot turn to unhealthy food to cope.

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