Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Whole 30 Week One

I've been a little surprised with some of the reactions I've had while doing my whole 30 plan. 
It might seem like I should be "above" this fad diet, what with having a dietetics degree and all. 

Well, whole 30 is NOT a diet. 
At least not the way YOU think of it as. 

Here's an excerpt from their website, Whole30.com :
(spaghetti squash, chicken, artichoke hearts, zucchini, tomatoes.)

Although weight loss is typically a positive side-effect, it's not the end goal. In fact, if you want to do it for weight loss, find something else. Whole30 is about so much more. 

So why am I doing it?

I haven't felt normal since being pregnant. I've had such little energy. I've had post partum depression, which encompasses a lot. Not to mention I'm carrying around an extra twenty pounds. That's exhausting. I've tried SO many different ways to lose weight. I knew my plan of general healthful eating wasn't cutting it and I knew I needed to do something drastic. I didn't realize how previously fortunate I was to have a body that didn't disgust me. That sounds dramatic, but it's true. Now, I hate getting dressed. I hate looking in the mirror. I avoid going places because I feel like I can't make myself look acceptable. I've been asked more than a handful of times if I'm pregnant again (one was just LAST MONTH!). I'm just so embarrassed with how I look and I feel like I cant change it...like I'm trapped. I decided a year and a half was long enough to live like that. I needed to make a change and I needed to do it now. 
(Blackberries, Cauliflower "rice", chicken baked in pineapple and tomatillo salsa)

I started doing a lot of research. I researched hormones up the ying yang. I fit almost every symptom for having thyroid dysfunction. Well, I got the blood test done, and it came back normal. The problem is that the test checks TSH and not the actual thyroid hormone, so it doesn't tell you if you have problems converting TSH into your thyroid hormones. Basically, the test has a somewhat large margin of error. I felt like it would be more effective to take my health into my own hands, than trying to convince my doctor that there was really was something wrong with me. 

When I stumbled onto whole30 I was SO impressed. (And no, they are not sponsoring me in any way.) The results were amazing. I read story after story of people who have felt better than they did in their whole life. They'd cured anything from diabetes to arthritis. One of their strongest purposes is hormone function. Exactly what I need! 
(Zucchini fritters with marinara sauce, and chicken)

So what is whole30? It's designed to get the most nutrients per calories. You eliminate all grains, beans, legumes, dairy, preservative and chemicals, soy, etc. Many people have adverse reactions to these things, so the best way to find out if you do is to eliminate it. The large majority of what I eat is vegetables. I also eat a good amount of fruits, meat, nuts and seeds, and healthy fats. There's no need to worry about not getting enough protein, carbohydrates...anything on this diet. You're getting mega doses of everything you need. And the proof is in the pudding.

I'm at the end of day nine, and feeling great. 
My mind feels clearer. My cravings for sweets are pretty much gone. I have felt more energy today. 
You're not supposed to weight yourself on it, but I'm also in a wellness competition with some friends that requires weekly weigh-ins. So I know that I've already lost SIX pounds. And you know that pregnant-looking belly that I was telling you about? It's shrunk drastically. Before it looked almost like it wasn't even part of my body. Like a bag full of jelly hanging there. I still have a long ways to go, but it's given me WAY more progress than all the other many things I've tried over the past year plus. Let's just remember that you're talking to someone who has tried everything for over a year to lose weight, hasn't been able to, and in a week in has lost six pounds. That's a big deal, people. But remember, it's about so much more than weight loss. It's just a very, very appreciated side effect. 
(Shredded, sauteed zucchini with a turkey marinara sauce)

So what happens at the end of the 30 days? You go back to your ice cream, pizza, and fries? Well, ideally, no. You're supposed to gradually reintroduce the foods you've eliminated. The reason for this is to see how your body reacts. THAT is the real purpose of this diet, as far as my impression goes. Grains might be healthy, but they may be causing inflammation in your joints. Dairy might be healthy, but it's tearing apart your gut. Through this diet, you can see how your body reacts to different things. It's really pretty amazing. We are all different. There isn't clear this is healthy and this isn't healthy guidelines that apply to everyone. It's all about knowing your body and having a healthy relationship with food. 

There is still SO much more to say about it, but I would be here all night. For serious.
 www.whole30.com is a great resource, or you can type in whole30 to Pinterest and see tons of success stories and yummy recipes. 

Not gonna lie though, I really really really miss my beans, bread, and cheese. Twenty days to go!

Thank you so much for your support. Keeping this goal public has been key to my success! 
(also, sorry for all the annoying food pictures if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook!)

You can leave any additional questions in the comment box. If you want to see what I'm eating, you can follow me on instagram at alexisks.


Whitney said...

My husband and I are about to do this in May...at least we are hoping to! Our go to sides are always a bean and potato. And I usually consider that a pretty healthy meal...so it is going to be tough!! I'm so nervous that we won't be able to stick it out!

Jessica said...

I've been thinking about starting this as soon as I have my baby in a few weeks! Although, I should probably start now to get in the habit :) I want the recipes of all those yummy looking pictures you posted!

Brooke said...

You're seriously awesome Alexis. This sounds like a tough plan to dive into, so good for you for sticking with it! I really hope you keep feeling great through the end! You're an inspiration :)

Life at The Hadenfeldt's said...

Your food looks so yummy and clean! Congrats on feeling better and the weight loss too.
My hubby and I do south beach off and on....we always have results but, pizza, donuts, ice cream always get the best of us around a month or so in. I look forward to reading your journey! Keep up,the fabulous work to feeling like an improved you!

Carlie said...

It's so funny to see this today, because I've been reading the book all week. It is such a good book. I'm going to start the 30 days in May! I am hoping it helps me figure out what is going on, because the doctors sure haven't been able to! Could you share any of your favorite recipes (or did you get them all from the back of the book)?