Post-Mortem

So I know I said I’d post on Day 31. And I’m sorry I didn’t deliver on that promise. The truth is, I didn’t have time to take the measurements that I wanted to.  All I can say is that in about 30 days, I lost about 12 pounds. Since January, I lost 16 pounds!

image.jpegThings fit so much better, and they look so much better on! My complexion is clearer, and I have more energy.

In the days immediately following Day 30, I was a bit lost. I know the Whole 30 plan has a re-introduction plan, but for me, it wasn’t feasible.  I’d specifically planned Whole 30 around some major events, and waiting another 2 weeks before introducing bread back in would be difficult. Or so that was my excuse.

Still, when you’ve spent 30 days avoiding certain foods because they’re perceivably “unhealthy,” then eating them again is a bit like being dragged into the wilderness blindfolded, and then taking the blindfold off and having to find your way around.

Ok maybe that’s a bit dramatic. But I did start slowly and small. I ate breakfast and lunch as if I were still on the diet. And then I had dinner at Panera. I had my totally paleo Fuji Apple salad sans cheese and dressing, but I also had a cup of broccoli cheddar soup and half a baguette (well, half the little piece of baguette they give you).

The next day, again, I was good for breakfast and lunch, and then for dinner I got a chick-fil-a grilled chicken Cobb salad. So, not too bad except for a little cheese on the salad and the little bit of sugar I knew was in the grilled chicken seasoning.

But Friday, Good Friday, Fasting Meatless Friday, my good eating habits kinda went out the window. I was good on breakfast. But then I had a fish sandwich for lunch and quesadilla for dinner. Terrrrrrrrribbbbleeeee. But past the 30 days, so I let myself have it.

This weekend wasn’t the best either. But a few things that have changed for the better:

1.I always stuck with a Whole30 compliant breakfast. It’s easy, and at this point I prefer the egg, meat, and fruit breakfast. So I know at least I’m good there.

2. I don’t need, nor do I really want, anything in my coffee anymore. I kind of prefer it black. I never thought I would! But it’s kind of refreshing! And it doesn’t add sugar and milk that kind of wears me down.

3. This weekend I ordered an unsweet tea from a  drive-in, and either the signal was bad or they goofed, but either way I ended up with a sweet tea. I could only get through a few sips! I prefer my tea unsweet now.

My plan on Friday after my terrible dinner of carbs, sugar, and dairy, was to go for a run. Did I mention we’re trying to train up for a 5K? I know that’s a walk in the park for many, but not me. Anyway, literally 5 minutes into the run (of which half was warm up), I pulled a muscle in my hip mid-run, and had to limp back home. Bummer. Tonight I’m feeling only a little sore still, so hopefully I’ll be back in it soon, but I was pretty disappointed to have to put off the exercise for a few days.

But regardless of my triumphs and downfalls, I’m still scared. I’m scared that I’m going to get carried away and gain it all back. And I can’t let that happen. I’m not done yet. I can’t be done yet because I haven’t accomplished what I said I would: to get as healthy as I can be. I can’t stop at 16 pounds. Talk to me again when that number is 66.

I’m going to take the next day or two to come up with a plan that works for me. Stay tuned.

Adios!

Day 30…

It’s here. Day 30. I was reading some older posts and recalling the feeling of never thinking today would come. But here it is. And tomorrow I remove the chains of Whole 30 and venture into the unknown. I’m not done losing weight, but I feel like this was a good foundation for the rest of the ride. Thanks for staying with me through it all. You kept me accountable, and you kept me motivated.

As for the fate of this blog– I don’t know what I’ll do. Tomorrow you’ll have a post for sure with some final figures- pounds and inches lost. After that, I guess it depends on what happens. Maybe it’s more of a weekly update. Or maybe it’ll transform into something completely different.

So anyway.. Last day. And here goes.

Breakfast= Frittata and Banana

The frittata is still great! This morning I had my frittata with a banana and cup of black coffee. Mmmmm…

Lunch= Leftover Zoodles and Meatballs

I can’t believe it took me until Day 29 to make such a great meal. The turkey meatballs were still so tender atop the zesty sauce and Zoodles. I can’t wait to make it again.

Dinner= Bruschetta Chicken

Sometimes a piece of pan-fried chicken is just what you need to end a long day. Sometimes you add tomatoes, basil, onion, and oregano, and you’re in heaven! Dinner was great! Just sliced a few chicken breasts in half, added some seasoning, and let them cook in a skillet with a little olive oil. Then I topped them with a bruschetta mix and popped them in the oven for a few minutes. Yummmmmm…

image It tasted so fresh and zesty! We added a salad to the mix, and dinner, my last dinner on this diet, was served. And soon after devoured.

Remarks…

I feel good. And my skin is so much clearer and brighter!  I would have liked to be a bit less round, but based on the recent dresses I bought, I’ve at least dropped a dress size. So, I’m still a work in progress, but I’m headed in the right direction!

So, au revoir, Whole 30! You’ll be missed f reasons I don’t exactly understand right now. And I’m sure at some point I’ll be back.

The Penultimate

Day 29…

The end is near… And yet so is the beginning.  I was thinking tonight while out walking and jogging (yes, jogging!), that the true test may very well start Wednesday. Self control once the self control is over. The true moment of truth: will my 30 days of whole eating have done the trick?

Yes, the cravings have gone away. No, I don’t miss sweets. I don’t really miss bread either. But I do miss cheese. And rice. And peanut butter. And Chinese food. But I’ve done ok without them, and I’m hoping that means I’ll eat them less frequently going forward.

Breakfast: Frittata and Larabar

I started this morning with the frittata I made yesterday. Delicious! I also had some crappy break room black coffee. Then I had a coconut Larabar about an hour later.

Lunch: Leftover Beef Stew

Yum. Yum. Yum. This stew was a winner. But I can’t wait until I can use corn starch or flour again because coconut flour totally messed up our stomachs. Apparently very high in fiber… At least it tasted good!

Dinner: Zoodles and Squoodles with Turkey Meatballs

I tried out the old spiralizer tonight with zucchini and squash. Zoodles and Squoodles!!! And this time instead of boiling it, I pan sautéed it with a little olive oil. Much better. Less soggy. More substance. In fact, Jonathan said he’d be fine if we never ate pasta spaghetti again. Major score!

To go with it, I made the most tasty, tender meatballs with ground turkey, which I rarely use. I mixed a pound of ground turkey with an egg, garlic salt, black and red pepper, oregano, parsley, tomato paste, and coconut flour, and then pan fried them in a tbsp of olive oil.  Once browned, I simmered them in Newman’s Own spaghetti sauce. Yum!!! It was one of the best things I’ve made this month. It wasn’t the most photogenic, but here are my Zoodles and Squoodles…

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Remarks…

Here goes the last day. It’s coming up. I’m ready to embrace it.  Until then…

Traveling Tale

Day 28…

So,  I’ve got some ‘splaining to do. It’s been a long week on the road, and sorry for not keeping you up-to-date on my Whole30 journey. But with 5 flights in 4 days, many after-midnight bedtimes, and long days of meetings and forums, I just didn’t have a spare moment. So here’s my catch-up post. I decided not to make it like a regular post where I list every single meal in its own section- it would just be a formatting exercise. Instead, here’s a day by day…

Monday, March 14

Early morning at the airport with incredibly long lines! Once through security, I headed to the food court for breakfast. Food court breakfast= either breakfast sandwiches or runny eggs. I opted for the runny eggs, with a side of mixed fruit. It was… Eh… But at least it was breakfast.

In Montreal, we got off the plane at 12:30, and had a meeting at 1:00! Eek! Unfortunately the walk to customs took another 20 minutes, then a 15 minute wait in line at the border, and 10 minute walk to the rental car. And we hadn’t had lunch! Lunch had to be quick. And unfortunately, the only thing between the airport and the meeting place is McDonald’s. So I got French fries. And scarfed them down. Not great. But kind of sort of ok?  It was the best I could do.

Dinner was much better…but very hard. The vendor we met in Montreal took us to a sports bar type place for dinner, filled with all the things you’d expect– burgers, pizza, pasta…  The group got nachos as an appetizer, and I got to watch them scarf them down. They smelled so good and fresh. I just sat there, stomach empty after  my French fry lunch. It was hard, but I did it. Then I ordered fajitas without all the good stuff (or I guess the bad stuff)… And was pleasantly surprised when the waitress offered me lettuce leaf wraps. So I ate chicken fajitas in lettuce leaves. And it was the most amazing taste in the world!

Tuesday, March 15

The vendor brought in breakfast and lunch today. Remember when I said that you should never rely on others to feed you when you’re on this diet? Well.. I came prepared. Instead of the Tim Horton’s donuts and muffins, I pulled out a Larabar. It was a meager breakfast, but I made it work.

And then, friends, I had a breakthrough. I was feeling very low-energy. And desperate to stay awake, I walked over to the coffee and poured myself a cup. And I drank black coffee. And I went back for seconds. And it was delicious. So now I drink black coffee. Ta-da!!

For lunch they brought in finger sandwiches. I took about 5 sandwiches, removed the bread and cheese, and just ate the meat and veggies.

Dinner was at the airport. I ordered a bacon cheeseburger, minus the cheese and condiments. But the French guy didn’t quite understand, and so my burger came with a bunch of melted cheese on it. I peeled off what I could. But I was so hungry. I caved. I ate the bun. I hated myself for it but was so hungry at this point I couldn’t stop myself. It was my first and only slip.

Wednesday, March 16

I woke up this morning in Toronto. I went down to the dining area for… more runny eggs! And some fruit.

After morning presentations, my boss asked if we wanted to do lunch… At Tim Hortons! Ugh. We went, and I ordered a turkey sandwich with just meat and veggies. And learning from my mistake the previous day, I promptly threw the bread away.

Again at the airport, we had dinner at a steakhouse, which was great! Steakhouses are so great for Whole30, because grilled meat and steamed veggies are staples. I ordered a ribeye with a green salad and veggies. Yum!

Thursday, March 17

I spent St. Patty’s Day in Washington, DC at a conference in a hotel. Breakfast and lunch were provided. For breakfast, I had (you may have guessed it) runny eggs and fruit.  And black coffee!

The lunch spread was comprised of hummus and veggies, pita bread, parmesan ratatouille, risotto, mushroom chicken, some kind of salmon, and tiramisu. I had a chicken breast (and tried to take the mushrooms off) and some carrots.  Then for a snack they had leftover hummus, cheese fondue, and cookies. Meh. No snack for me.

For dinner we went to a classy restaurant that served sushi and fancy dishes. I ordered a fish dish in a coconut broth with shredded veggies. I guess I assumed it would be baked fish, but what came back to me was coated in a breading! So I had to peel off the coating and only eat the middle. But the taste was out of this world!

Friday, March 18

I was so glad to be back home where I could control my own meals! I made some amazing (not runny) eggs for breakfast. For lunch we went to Jason’s Deli and I got the salad bar. Yummy green salad with egg and almonds!  And for dinner I made amazing baked fish with tomato and okra on the side.

Saturday, March 19

Today was a house hunting day! For breakfast, I made a quick breakfast scramble with chicken sausage, and onion.

For lunch, we went to Wendy’s. I had a bunless burger and a few fries.

After driving past houses all day, we went grocery shopping. Jonathan has been wanting to try chorizo for a while now, and he found some at Kroger for us to cook up. I had mine with a sweet potato, and that was dinner.

Sunday, March 20

So that takes us to today. I have two days left in this diet, and I am patiently awaiting the end. According to the book “It Starts With Food”, I’m not supposed to say this diet is hard. Apparently birthing a baby is hard. Fighting cancer is hard. And yes they are, in much more dramatic ways.

But for me, sticking to this diet while traveling and not always choosing my own meals is hard.  Most of the book describes cooking for yourself. Making your own meals and reading labels. There are no labels in the restaurant world. Or not many. The cashier at Tim Hortons will not know if the turkey on their sandwiches is cured with sugar. So yeah. I’m glad the end is near.

I made another frittata that I can bring to work and eat this week.

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Homemade sausage, onion, basil, and tomatoes…Delicious! Hopefully I won’t get sick of this one like last time, but it was definitely good this morning!

For lunch I baked some fries and some chicken wings. And put together a stew for dinner. Grass-fed beef, trinity veggies, tomatoes, carrots, and green beans. It was so good… But as I sit here writing this, our stomachs are grumbling a bit, so jury’s still out on that one.  I may change my mind.

Remarks…

You’ll notice that there’s no weight loss picture this week. Much to my disappointment, after all I sacrificed for the diet this week, I didn’t lose any weight. I didn’t gain any, but I also didn’t lose any. Hopefully it’s due to the bloat of flying around, and next week will show great results. Time will tell. For now, I’m finishing strong! 2 more days…

Too Many Potatoes!

Day 20…

Happy Saturday, y’all! And to the Facebook crowd: welcome. I figured it was time to share my experience with all my Facebook friends.

Today, I tried to make chorizo. I was just going to pan fry it like I’ve seen done before. But I soon learned that there’s a difference between Spanish and Mexican chorizo, and we bought the wrong one. Spanish chorizo is a smoked link sausage. Mexican has a very different consistency. It’s made with pig salivary glands and cheeks, and has the consistency of… well, shit. I squeezed it out of its oblong package and into the frying pan all in one long piece, and tried to cook something with it. By the time it was done it looked more like a pile than a turd, and equally gross. Needless to say, neither of us ate that.

Breakfast= Bacon and Egg Hash

Originally I was going to put chorizo in the hash (potatoes and onion), but when that didn’t pan out, I threw some bacon in the pan and cracked a few (yes) eggs on top. Delicious!

Lunch= Leftover Pulled Pork and Mashed Sweet Potato

So breakfast was one potato, and lunch was another, although different, potato. 2 potato.

Today we cleaned out the fridge, and that meant just eating leftovers. Tasty, but not much to write home about.

Dinner= Kabobs

Tonight we went out again (I really need to start cooking on the weekend). Jonathan chose Zoe’s kitchen, where I ordered steak kabobs, served with steamed veggies and (you guessed it) potatoes! 3 potato.

imageScrumptious!

Remarks…

i know potatoes aren’t conducive to weight loss, even though they’re allowed on the diet. I need to work on eating the good clean foods that are recommended for frequent use and stop with all these that are just recommended for occasion. The saga will continue. I’m still strong-willed. I can make it! 10 more days…

1.5 Gallons

Day 19…

My stomach is grumbling as I write this.  I definitely didn’t eat enough today. But there’s nothing I can do about it for another 30 minutes. My Lenten sacrifice is after-dinner snacking, and although I have slipped once or twice, I think I can make it to midnight.

Today was weigh in day! I’m pleased stoked to report that this week I lost 4 pounds! Total pounds lost since January, 14 pounds.

 

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Today I also had my first wedding dress fitting. I was so excited to finally try on my dress, and it went on super easily! The seamstress actually has to take in quite a bit all over.  This is awesome news, considering the dress I tried on in the same size only just fit!   I have to say, I really can’t see much of a difference in my size, but when something like this happens, I guess there’s no denying there are results!

Breakfast= Eggs Over Easy, Apple. Almond Butter

i worked from home today and therefore had to make my own breakfast. Since it’s Friday and I can’t eat meat, eggs it was. Again.  I also ate an apple with some almond butter.

Lunch= Tomato Soup

I made my own tomato soup today. For a paleo recipe, it wasn’t half bad! I added a little coconut milk for thickness and got to use my immersion blender!

imageTo me, it tasted a bit like spaghetti sauce, but Jonathan said it tasted like Bertoli but fresher. I’ll take it!

Dinner= Salad, Shrimp, and Baked Potato

Tonight we went to Applebee’s for the first and last time in this neighborhood. Terrible service, and the food was just ok. I had done my research ahead of time to see where I could find something that was both Whole 30 compliant and meatless. I found a blackened tilapia dish on the Applebee’s website and thought I’d hit the jackpot. But when we got there, it was not on the menu. So I kind of made my own hodgepodge meal of side salad (which was tiny), grilled shrimp, and a plain baked potato. Tasty but not filling. Oh well, in the words of Amy Schumer, “Sometimes people are hungry. And it’s ok.”

Remarks…

I’m glad to finally start seeing results, but man am I bored!

Ups and Downs

Days 17 & 18…

Guys, sometimes I love this diet, and other times I really, really hate it.  Yesterday, I really really hated it.  Like, I wanted to come on here and type in all caps about how mad and miserable this diet was making me.  The issue, again, being that it’s nearly impossible to find a quick meal out that’s compliant with the program.  And yesterday I had to eat out.  Quickly.  It was hard.  I was mad at the world and cursed the inventor of the processed food.  I hated the guy who decided to put soy in everything.  I hated the cheeseheads in Wisconsin (no just kidding guys, but seriously, why does everything have cheese in it?!)  I cursed the French for teaching us that everything tastes better with butter, even when you wouldn’t think butter belonged.  And I really, really, really hated Chick-fil-A, when my plan to get their grilled nuggets was foiled when I discovered there was sugar in the seasonings.  UGH!

After throwing my phone at that last discovery clear across my car, I decided I didn’t care if something had a trace of dairy or sugar.  Ignorance is bliss, so as long as I didn’t look it up, I would assume that I was off the hook.  Of course, I realize the chemistry in my body knows better, but between a trace of butter and a Big Mac (with the bun), I thought my way was the better way.


 

Day 17…

Breakfast= Omelet and Bacon

Ugh. I’m so sick of eggs.  It’s times like these that I really envy the people who are perfectly content eating the same thing over and over and over.  A co-worker at my previous job literally ate the same homemade lunch every single day and loved it.  I can barely eat the same thing leftover if I’ve had it the night before.

So yes, eggs are getting old.  I did try a new form of egg in an omelet with tomatoes and peppers.  So that’s something…

Lunch= Fuji Apple Chicken Salad

I had a really long, crazy day at the office, and before I knew it, it was 2:30, and I hadn’t eaten lunch.  I left the office and headed to Starbucks, as is my usual Wednesday ritual, but since I’d missed lunch, I needed something to eat.  My first idea was Chick-fil-A, since I knew they had grilled chicken nuggets.  But a quick look at the ingredients led me to realize that the nuggets were not, in fact, compliant.  So I went to Panera, found a salad that looked decent, and ordered it without cheese and dressing.  The fuji apple salad contains greens, tomatoes, onion, pecans, chicken, and apple chips.  100% compliant? I have no idea.  At this time, I didn’t care.  But hopefully it was a thumbs up…

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Dinner= Grilled Chicken and Larabar

Unfortunately I was still out by dinner time and no clue what to eat.  This was the part where I was hating the world.  I finally ran out of time trying to figure it out, and ended up at Boston Market.  I got 1/4 roasted chicken and squash casserole, which I guess I should have known would contain squash and something else that was not compliant.  So I just ate the chicken.  And a key lime Larabar.


Day 18…

Breakfast= Scrambled Eggs and Sausage

Ughhhhhhhhh.

Lunch= Baked Chicken, Carrots, and Zucchini

Have you ever had a food that you wished you liked more?  Like, you really really really want to like it, but no matter how hard you try, you just really don’t like it.  That’s me and zucchini.  I try… I really try… to like zucchini.  But after a few bites, I’m just done with it.  The zoodles last week were good but it’s because they were drowned in tomato sauce.  But just sauteed? Doesn’t work that well.  The roasted carrots from the cafeteria today were stellar!  Next time I’ll just get two servings.  Amazing, and without butter or honey glaze.

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Dinner= Chicken, mashed sweet potatoes, broccoli

Every now and then I’m inspired to make something new.  In the fridge I had a pound of chicken breast that I’d intended on baking with lemon.  Lemon chicken.  Boring. old. lemon. chicken.  I couldn’t do it.  So I improvised.  I did some research (Google and Pinterest) and found a few recipes: one for paleo pesto and one for paleo bacon wrapped chicken.  So I improvised and made tomato and pesto stuffed chicken wrapped in bacon.  I also whipped some sweet potatoes in some coconut milk and steamed some broccoli.

The chicken?  Oh my gosh. We both loved it.  The pesto came out delicious and with the stuffing and the wrapping, the chicken was so flavorful and moist.  Yummmmm…

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The mashed potatoes were also good.  But the broccoli?  I steamed it too long.  It basically disintegrated upon contact.  I really need to learn how to steam veggies better…

Remarks…

As always, mixed feelings.  It’s amazing how much of a hassle this is sometimes, and other times, when I actually have time to plan, it’s a piece of cake.  Yesterday and today were night and day.  Yesterday I was at the mercy of eating out, and today I had my own food. Tomorrow is Friday, which means it will also be a challenge.  But I’ll get through.  12 days and counting…