As far as diets go, the Whole30 is a pretty daunting undertaking. You have to give up all of your favorites, plus more than you realize! No gluten, dairy, sugar, or alcohol for 30 Whole days. Is it even possible?
If I can do it, I’m fairly confident anyone can. But that doesn’t mean it will be easy.
So, here are my Whole30 Tips in an effort to help get you through.
1.Write out your why. Why do you want to do this? And what will help motivate you to follow through?
On day 5, I wrote out my “why”:
*I’ve been carrying around an extra 40 pounds since I stopped nursing my youngest. The extra weight makes me feel insecure and I have a hard time feeling good about myself.
*I’ve developed a bad relationship with food since I was first pregnant with the mindset “I’m pregnant, I can eat whatever I want” which carried into “I’m nursing, I can eat whatever I want.” Not true in either instance and even worse when the bad habits are formed and seemingly impossible to break.
*I need a nutritional reset. I WANT a nutritional reset.
*I’ve never considered myself a bad sleeper but looking back at the past year or so (or more?), I rarely have a good nights sleep. I want to feel refreshed in the morning. Side note-I suspect my phone use late at night is a big attribute. While doing the Whole30, I am also going to read an actual book before bed, instead of my phone.
*I’m looking forward to adding things back in my diet slowly. Not because I’m craving them, but more because I want to see if I have any adverse reactions to anything (please don’t be cheese!!!).
*I have to prove it to myself that I can do it.
That last one is what kept me going the last two weeks. Figure out your motivation, and make it happen.
2. Prepare. The whole30 is all about planning! Plan out your meals!! I know meal planning isn’t for everyone, but I have found a way to make it less overwhelming which you can read about here.
Every Sunday night I got nice and cozy with Pinterest. Check out the Whole30 meals and go from there. ALWAYS check the ingredients. There are a ton of recipes that claim to be Whole30 compliant but actually aren’t. And don’t forget to include snacks!
Feel free to check out my Whole30 Pinterest Board for ideas. If you’re a creature of habit, even better! You can find meals and snacks that you love and keep going back to them.
3. Establish a Support System. Find someone to do the Whole30 with you. That way you can share recipes and ideas on how to kick cravings. If you can’t find anyone, join a Whole30 Facebook group. This is a tough 30 days and it’s important to have encouragement and support along the way.
4. Eat a variety of foods. Just because a food is Whole30 compliant, does not mean you should eat it all day long, every single day. There is a huge variety of foods you can eat on this program. Do your best to explore. Otherwise, you will get sick of some of your favorite foods. Case and point, I will not be eating sweet potatoes (in any form), or dates, for quite some time.
Some things I learned the hard way-
Bacon is technically compliant, but most bacons have added sugar so it’s nearly impossible to find one that you can have. Start eating prosciutto instead. Still delicious, no added sugar.
Dates make you regular…and then, even more regular. Take it easy on the fruits, especially dried fruits.
Sugar is in everything. If its a sauce or a dressing, you probably can’t have it. Your best bet for salads, is to make your own salad dressing. And watch that extra added sugar in balsamic vinegar!
Not only will your body be going through a detox, it messes with your head too. For the sake of your relationships, try your very best to stay positive.
Listen to your body. This diet is not for everybody. You will be giving up a lot of foods but as long as you’re eating a variety, you should be easily getting all the nutrients you need.
Those are all of the tips I have for now!