Folks make life-changing decisions every day. Maybe you’re going to apply to grad school, get a perm, propose to your partner, get a puppy, or buy a house. You can hem and haw, discuss these major (or less major) moves with friends and family, make lists of pros and cons, weigh your options.
Other times, you just send an email to your husband and BAM you bought a house (shoutout to the Ilagans for really leaning in on the whole real estate thing.)
I’m typically the hemmer and hawer. Lists on lists. Venn diagrams galore.
This time, it was as simple as “I’m game if you are” with a link to this Thrillist article.
Three days later, Tuesday May 31st, was Day 1 of 30 days.
Whole30 (click link to go to THEIR explanation, here’s my abbreviated take) is 30 days without:
- Sugar (we’re talking honey, syrup, Stevia… it’s everywhere)
- Processed foods
- Alcohol (during Philly Beer Week, smooth one, JP.)
- Grains (from corn to quinoa, wheat to farro!)
- Legumes (BEANS! also, all soy. fack.)
- Dairy (milk? who cares. CHEESE!)
While the decision was made quickly, it wasn’t without reason. Otherwise, why else would I be facing the shocked looks of friends when I pass on incredible, rare Philly Beer Week offerings as I sip seltzer (with lime juice when I’m feeling totally wild)?
This is the part everyone keeps asking me.
WHY would you do this?!
You LOVE grains, sugar, booze, and cheese. You look GREAT now, you don’t need to lose weight! You’re going to miss Philly Beer Week! You’re going to miss (Insert: my birthday! Some cocktail party! A potluck dinner! Whatever.)
But the thing is, there’s always going to be something to “miss”. Whether it’s a meal or a beer. Doesn’t mean you miss out on the events. The real reason why?
I needed to press “RESET” on things. I was already taking a hiatus from drinking, so I figured let’s just really get down to business. I typically have this tendency of hitting the summer hard. PR events, outdoor parties, beer gardens, day drinking, al fresco dining… And I kind of started revisiting some old, bad habits (namely: “treating myself” every time an occasion felt “special”).
But my sleep was crummy and my workouts were severely suffering. I hate to imagine myself as sluggish ever, but I was making excuses to skip fitness, or replacing it with meals out.
Shoot, I was sluggish.
TL; DR: My WHY Whole30? Simply put, I wanted to feel better. I’ve always found that a certain amount of self-discipline is required for achieving highest performance. I thrived with Weight Watchers in 2010, losing 40+ lbs and totally changing the way I ate, cooked, and experienced food (for a wordy look back at those days and a photo of me at probably slightly over 215lbs, check out THIS POST). Whole30 seems like a good refresher.
What’s been tough?
Social engagements based around food, cooking constantly, being “that girl” that talks about her slow cooker recipes… I apologize to everyone that hangs out with me for the next twenty days. I’ll look at your pizza longingly. I’ll smell your cookies and probably hate you a little bit. But I haven’t stopped going out and doing things. I just typically bring snacks and occasionally leave to go eat a meal I prepared at home.
What’s been great?
Oh gosh. I’m going to say it. I feel incredible. I don’t feel tired. The first week, I had some trouble eating enough, so my workouts were either half-ass or nonexistent. I don’t think it’s tiger blood, or sugar demons, or some of the silly terms they spout. I just… feel good?
We’re not supposed to weigh ourselves during these 30 days. But, even though the focus isn’t weight loss, we are supposed to take before photos. In interest of honesty and sharing my truth, here are mine. I’ll definitely be updating at the end, if not one more time around 20 days. But ten days in… This feels pretty terrific.