Saturday, March 31, 2012

Day 31 - The Wrap-Up Post


I made it! Woohoo! [*happy dance*]

Before starting out, I wasn't entirely sure I could do this. A whole month without chocolate? I've never done that before. Seriously. Never. I wasn't sure I could drink my coffee without sweetener of some sort. I wasn't sure if I could keep up with the food prep and cooking. I wondered if I'd enjoy the food, if I'd feel full, if I'd even see any benefits by the end.

So, without further ado, my summary of everything I've enjoyed over the past 30 days:

Weight lost - 7.6lbs. Very happy with that.
Inches lost - from the biggest part of my abdomen, 2.5". From the smallest point of my waist, 2.5". Overall (from five points of measurement), 9.5".
Clothes - fit differently. Even bought a size 2 pants, when my size 4s were a little snug at the beginning.
Body composition - changing dramatically. I feel like I'm benefiting from my workouts more, and seeing even quicker results. (I'm kind of a mesomorph, so I build muscle fairly quickly. But this is *crazy*! If I had more free time to devote to my workouts, I bet I could get super strong.)
Skin - clearer, redness from my cheeks is almost gone, and dark circles under my eyes are less noticeable.
Breathing - improved. I didn't even realize how much inflammation was in my nasal passages until it was gone!
Food - loved it! Amazing flavours, tried loads of new recipes, and even tried out some new veggies. I feel like we've broken out of a serious dinner rut. And I never went hungry. Ever.
Cooking - learned to love it, too! Suddenly it wasn't so much a chore I had to do to make sure my family ate, but it was a genuine pleasure to prepare something for us to share together, especially knowing that those meals were so healthy. My kids ate everything we ate (with the exception of steak night, sorry kiddos!), and there were very rarely any objections from the "big" kids. (Which, considering they're four and not-quite three
is a feat in and of itself!)
Emotional eating - not 100% conquered, but close. Probably 90% defeated, but I'm always aware of the other 10%. I don't always give in, and at least I recognize that my desire to eat is not because of physical hunger. And instead of pacing the kitchen looking for something "approved" to fill the junk food hole (like a homemade Larabar, if I do decide to cave, I eat a piece of fruit.
Sugar cravings - I still like fruit, but I don't crave chocolate or junk anymore. This. is. huge. The smell of some things I used to like (M&Ms, for example) is kind of gross to me now. Too artificial. Cocoa still smells nice, though.
Caffeine dependency - a thing of the past. I still love my morning decaf for the ritual, but it has nothing to do with needing caffeine. Oh, plus it's a great way to enjoy coconut milk. A combination of Baby Belle starting to sleep better and having better energy made this the perfect time to kick the habit.

This month has challenged me and stretched me. It has required far more time in the kitchen then I'm accustomed to, which has been a bit of a challenge at times. I've gotten more efficient with my meal preparations, and oddly the increase in time spent on food has coincided with a decrease in obsession with food. I just eat good food until I'm satisfied. That's it.

A big thanks to Nicole for leading me here, to my husband for being willing to go along with this crazy idea, and to the team at Whole9Life for all the support they offer on their FB page.

(And, if you're wondering, I'm planning to continue sharing here. The first 30 days were interesting, but the fun hasn't ended yet - next I get to try reintroducing things and figure out what still deserves a place on my plate and what doesn't.)

Friday, March 30, 2012

Day 30!! The End!!

Today is the official end to my Whole30! I don't remember the last time a month flew by so quickly! I've really enjoyed everything I ate over the past month (honestly - everything), and I haven't missed much. Today was a tricky day, food-wise, because of all the added restrictions. First the Whole30 rules, second no nuts or eggs (because of my autoimmune issue), third I don't really like fish much, certainly not enough to eat it for three meals in a day! Apparently a one-day protein fast is no big deal, as long as I'm eating lots of veggies and healthy fats, so that is what I did. Need to make up all those protein-based calories somewhere!

Breakfast - A smoothie with frozen raspberries, 2/3 of a banana and a heap of full-fat coconut milk. Of course when I say "smoothie", I really mean "ice cream"! It was so thick and creamy that I ate it out of a bowl with a spoon.

Lunch - Guacamole over sauteed kale and sliced tomato. Then I decided I hadn't had enough guacamole, so I grabbed some baby carrots and started dipping. (I ate almost a full avocado - Baby Belle ate the rest. She loves to eat guacamole out of a bowl with a spoon!)

Supper - Pan-fried "breaded" (almond flour) haddock with coconut curry cabbage and sweet potatoes (roasted then mashed with fried onions & coconut oil).

Snacks - Coconut butter!! A handful of shredded coconut and an apple.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Day 29 - The Home Stretch

Hard to believe this all comes to an end tomorrow evening. As of Saturday, I'm "allowed" to eat whatever I want. I will be able to say that I made it through 30 days without touching a single off-limits ingredient. I ate no grains, no legumes, no sugar, no dairy, and no soy. (Unless, of course, I dive into a chocolate cake in the next 24 hours...) I didn't even lick my fingers when handling something for the kids that had a forbidden ingredient in it!

But here's the thing. Even though I'll have the figurative green light on Saturday, going totally off the rails would defeat the whole purpose of doing this in the first place. If I eat a big bowl of ice cream and feel terrible afterwards, I won't be sure exactly what about the ice cream didn't agree with me. The dairy? The sugar? The fact that it's a processed, chemically-laden food product? The whole idea is to reintroduce things one at a time and figure out your body's reaction to each thing. I know I won't bother reintroducing wheat, because I already know what that does to me! Pain in the butt hip. Everything else, though, I'll have to figure out. I'm going out for dinner on Saturday, and my plan is to eat a meal that is as close to Whole30 as I can get - but I won't bother asking about what kind of oil they use. Aaaaand I may just consider ordering a glass of wine...

Breakfast - The last sausage pattie with guacamole on top, and a side of sauteed kale and cherry tomatoes. Decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - Leftover roast chicken and gravy. And an apple. Yes, that's it. My kids were NUTS and my kitchen was a DISASTER. The plan was to clean up then make some veggies - but then nap time was over. (How 90 minutes flew by so fast, I don't understand!)

Supper - Roasted pork tenderloin (rubbed with olive oil, garlic, basil, salt and pepper) with curried twice-baked sweet potatoes (minus the sausage) and roasted cauliflower.

And now, there is beef stock finishing up in the crock pot. Mmmm! Over 2L of stock for about $3, no additives, preservatives, sugar, soy or other questionable stuff!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Day 28 - A New Shape

I haven't done any body measurements since beginning my Whole30 (as per the rules - oh, other than that one misguided weigh-in on day 5), but I can tell by the way things fit that my body composition is changing. Things that were snug a month ago fit beautifully now. Things that fit perfectly a month ago need to be tailored. And for the first time in a long time - maybe ever? - I can feel my spine. Is it totally vain to say that I'm finding a great deal of confidence in all the positive changes in my body? Bah, even if it is vain, I'm enjoying it. :)

Breakfast - Homemade sausage pattie with guacamole and sauteed kale.

Lunch - Leftover roast chicken and gravy with a heaping side of roasted broccoli. (I could eat a bowl of that while watching a movie in lieu of popcorn. Seriously. That and roasted cauliflower. I'm hooked.)

Supper - Pulled pork sandwiches. I know, big Whole30 no-no. Oops. Guess Melissa and Dallas won't be referring anyone to my blog for meal ideas. :) I made a simple pulled pork in the crock pot (with thinly sliced onions, garlic and chicken stock) and then mixed it with the barbeque sauce from Paleo Comfort Foods. I toned down the heat (for the kids) and added a teeny bit of sweetness by chopping up four or five dates and simmering them in the sauce then blending it at the end. Tossed the sauce with the pork and piled it (with some raw red onion) on a grain-free bun. All served with a mound of beautifully sauteed baby bok choy.

(Yes, it seems I break the rules about not paleo-fying things all the time. But here's where I draw the line: I've never tried to create a version of a food that's a known trigger for me. Eating a muffin sweetened only with bananas doesn't make me want to hit up a bakery for a wheat- and sugar-laden version. Eating a cheese-free, almond crust "pizza" doesn't make me want to call the delivery guy and get a Meat Lovers Special. I know my limit, so I've never pureed dates with cocoa powder in hopes of creating an approved-ingredient chocolate substitute! I break the rules [always have - it's in my nature] but I know when to stop.)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Day 27 - Home Alone

Baby Belle was up all night. Well, not technically all night, but she was up from 9:30pm until 3am, so close enough. After only three hours of sleep I was miserable this morning. And to add insult to injury, my husband was scheduled to have a staff meeting after work, which would mean he'd be walking in the door at the same time we needed to be sitting down for supper, to make sure we could finish and get the kids in bed before the girls arrive for faith study tonight.


I was changing Baby Belle's diaper in her room just after lunch (after a napless morning) when I heard Princess say, "Hi, Daddy!" I didn't think anything of it, because she and Music Man have been playing this game where they take turns being the baby and the parent.  Wasn't I shocked when I heard a voice respond to him?! My beloved hero came home to rescue me from my misery! Or maybe to rescue the kids from my misery... Whatever. He helped me get them ready for naps, then while they slept I slept, too!

And if that wasn't awesome enough, after they were all up from their naps he packed them into the car and drove off into the sunset city to have dinner with his parents. I got to be home alone for three whole hours. Yes sir, it was just what the doctor ordered! Feeling very refreshed now, I must say.

Breakfast - Homemade pork sausage patties with sliced tomato. Two cups of decaf (wished it were regular) with coconut milk.

Lunch - Leftovers from last night - a hamburger pattie with sauteed onions, homemade ketchup, and a side of coconut curry cabbage.

Supper - Crock pot chicken and gravy (yum!!!) and raw veggies with guacamole.

Snacks - A banana and a (rather large-ish) scoop of fresh cinnamon coconut butter.

Day 26 - No More Eggs?!

Well now. It has come to my attention that in addition to the dietary changes I've already made, I should also consider giving up eggs, nuts and nightshades, to see if there's any improvement in my alopecia areata, since it falls within the category of autoimmune.

But here's the thing. Do you know what nightshades are? It's a fairly large group of foods, including tomatoes, peppers (both sweet and hot) and spices like cayenne, chilli powder, curry powder, and paprika. And nuts, while not a huge part of my diet over the last 30 days would still be challenging to give up as I've been using almond flour in many recipes (like as a binder in hamburgers). And eggs?! I've eaten eggs for breakfast just about every day since I started! Oy.

I'm going to do some more reading about this. Obviously I'd love to see improvements in my condition, but it would be frustrating to go cold turkey on all those things and not see an improvement. *sigh* For now I'll just start with cutting out eggs and go from there. Wish me luck.

Breakfast - One and a half (leftover) Italian sausages fried with kale, ghee and garlic, topped with a sliced roma tomato.

Lunch - Coconut curry cabbage and a small-ish chicken leg.

Supper - Burgers! Smothered in homemade ketchup and a pile of onions sauteed in ghee. And, because it was just so yummy, I made another batch of the coconut curry cabbage. (Francis also had fried sweet potato slices.)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Day 25 - Shopping Therapy

Not that I really needed any particular therapy, but it's always fun to go shopping, am I right?! The five of us made a trip to Old Navy because I'd mentioned that I wanted to look at some of their new dresses, and my fabulous husband said, "Well let's go then!"

I bought these, and this, and another dress which isn't on their website. And the funny thing about that particular dress, is that it has horizontal stripes! I was feeling bold! Let's hope I can recreate that feeling when it comes time to wear that bad boy out of the house!

Breakfast - Three eggs and kale scrambled, a bit of crispy prosciutto and a two cups of decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - A big @ss salad with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber and diced rotisserie chicken breast. Oh, and a healthy dose of (approved) Italian dressing. By the way, this all natural Italian dressing is hands-down the best Italian dressing I've ever had. One of the best dressings, period.

Supper - The most intensely flavourful, perfectly medium-rare sirloin steak, smothered with a mountain of onions (sauteed in ghee), and a side of grilled bell peppers.

Snacks - Most of a really big apple (all three kids helped me eat it!) and half a banana with six or seven almonds.

Result: My protein was pretty much right on target again, and my carb levels were much better than yesterday, but still a tiny bit higher than what I'm aiming for. I wish I knew what my recommended fat intake should be - I'm off to do some reading on that right now!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Day 24 - Mostly Kid-less

Ah, hubby and I had such a relaxing day! We dropped our kids off at his parents' house around 9:30 this morning, and took off. We bought a few new CDs from a couple of our favourite artists, a couple of Easter gifts for the kids, fabric, some decorations for their rooms, groceries from two different stores, and a new video game. We did take a little pit-stop to have lunch and a quick nap with the kids in the midst of all our shopping, but otherwise we got to hold hands and have an *uninterrupted* adult conversation! Heaven.

Oh, and I went for my second run this morning. Pretty proud that I actually got my backside out the door by 6:30am on a Saturday. Even more proud that I felt even better today that I did two days ago. My stride was definitely more even, and my over-all pace was way more consistent. I'm not planning to go again until Tuesday, because the plan is to do strength-training on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. (I miss my morning butt-kickings from Jillian Michaels!)

Breakfast - Three hard-boiled eggs chopped and stirred into the last bowl of curried cauliflower soup. Decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - A chicken breast and baby bok choy stir-fry with olive oil and garlic.

Supper - Two and a half Italian sausages and broiled asparagus.

Snacks - A giant Honeycrisp apple, about 10 almonds, and half a Larabar.

So after logging my food intake into MyFitnessPal, (just out of curiosity, not because I intend to start tracking every bite I eat again), it appears that I hit my protein level perfectly (at least what Mark Sisson says my protein intake should be), but I was higher in carbs than is ideal for my current goals. I think for the remaining few days, I'll try changing that up and see how I feel.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Day 23 - Egg Day

I'm a little sick of eggs today.

It's Lent, so we are really diligent about not eating any meat on Fridays. Since fish is pricey (and never really that fresh) around here, our go-to meals used to always revolve around legumes (generally lentils) or cheese (like veggie quesadillas or pizza).

So now, we're basically left with eggs. Which, after eating them three times in one day, start to get old. Honestly, the only excitement in my meals today was discovering three double-yoked eggs. Sad.

Breakfast - Scrambled eggs and kale. Decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - Two hard-boiled eggs, a roma tomato and a chunk of cucumber, both sliced and drizzled with (approved) Italian salad dressing.

Supper - Fried eggs over sweet potato latkes.

Snacks - Two Larabar-bites (still haven't settled on a name for these things...), an apple (mmmm Honeycrisps!) with a handful of almonds and a sprinkling of shredded coconut.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Day 22 - And Day 1!

I did it! I went for my first "run" this morning! Yeah, I know - it wasn't really a run, but it's pretty much all I'm capable of at this point. I found a 10-week learn-to-run program, which assures me that if I stick with it, I'll be running 20 minutes without stopping by the end of the program. Today's assignment was to run for a minute, walk for two minutes, repeated seven times.

For the first few running minutes, I really tried to pace myself, unsure of whether I'd even be able to complete all seven. Yes, I know that for those of you runners reading this, you're probably in awe of my utter non-runningness. It's a combination of the issues in my feet (I have hammer toes, I'm flat-footed, I have a forefoot pronation AND plantar fasciitis), and having endured a lifetime of at least sporadic joint pain and carrying too much weight. In any case, by the last few runs, I realized I was actually doing it - and I still had steam left! I decided to push myself for the remaining time. And by the end, I felt great.

Well, I had a wicked headache, but that was either related to the relative sleeplessness of the previous night, OR I am lacking critical knowledge about pre- and post-workout nutrition issues. (Thoughts?)

Breakfast - Two ggs scrambled with diced pork and grilled peppers and onions. Decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - Three eggs scrambled with kale.

Supper - Rotisserie chicken diced and stirred into some soup.

Snacks - Two bananas and an apple.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Day 21 - Victory is Silent!

I really had intended to be out the door with my running shoes by 6:15 this morning. I had assumed today would be like every other day. How surprised was I when Princess (who was sleeping on a mattress on our floor) said, "Hey look, guys! It's six-three-zero!" She is an early riser by nature, often awake before 6:00am, but knows she's not allowed to leave her room or wake anyone else until she sees that all-important six. We were floored when we realized how late it was - and even more floored when my husband pointed out that he'd only gone in to Baby Belle once last night, around 9:45pm, and only to give her back her soother.

She slept for nine hours.


I can hardly believe it!

It only took 13 months (to the day), but she finally had a good night's sleep!

We snuggled with Princess in our bed for about fifteen minutes, at which point the other two woke up and we dragged ourselves out of that comfy cocoon to make some breakfast. Yes, my first run would have been nice. But after a very long 22 months of horrible sleep (I don't sleep when pregnant, either), I think the way my day started was just right.

(Here's hoping tonight is as good or even better!)

Breakfast - Two fried eggs with fried prosciutto and a wedge of cantaloupe. Felt like a feast!! One cup of decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - A bowl of yesterday's sweet curried cauliflower soup, with four or five chopped-up turkey nuggets thrown in. Surprisingly yummy! The girls enjoyed the nuggets, but Music Man was feeling nostalgic for "real nuggets". Next time, hopefully I'll have ground chicken available (instead of just turkey).

Supper - Taco drumsticks (instead of wings) with guacamole dip, and a heaping side of baby bok choy. Highly recommend the chicken!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Day 20 - 2/3 Done, and Adding Some Exercise

I've been a *total* slacker about exercising since kicking this thing off 20 days ago. They suggest taking it kind of easy for the first couple of weeks as your body tries to heal from all the inflammation, leaky gut, etc. So I took the first two weeks off, with every intention of kicking some serious ass over March Break. Ha! Wanna know what I did over March Break when I got some free time? Napped! And it was delightful. :) But here I am, two-thirds of the way through this Whole30* and it's time to get my (hopefully shrinking) booty moving.

I signed up for Whole Family's 30 day burpee challenge. Every day for a month, I need to do 50 burpees, 50 hip-lifts, 1 minute plank, 1 minute left side plank and 1 minute right side plank. Ummm.... OUCH.

I recently found out that my abs have not healed from my latest pregnancy (or, chances are, the two before that). There is a gap between my abs that I can fit my fingers in! Planks are one of the ideal core exercises for repairing this damage, so this is a good fitness challenge to not only get me moving and sweating again, but also to be consistent in working to fix that so I can be rocking a six-pack by July back to normal soon.

Also, I've always wanted to be a runner. Certain physical limitations (malformations in my feet) have held me back, but so has the combination of my weight and my joint pain. With no more joint pain and far less excess weight, I'm ready to try again! I'm hoping to hit the trail tomorrow morning if I can get my tired behind up early enough. (Did I mention Music Man got me up this morning at 4:30am? I may sleep in tomorrow if given the chance...) I'll keep you posted on my progress as I work through my learn-to-run program. (Unless, Rebecca, you have a better one to suggest?)

Breakfast - A fried egg and prosciutto sandwich on a bun.

Lunch - Leftover pork roast, guacamole and sliced tomato on another bun.

Supper - Italian sausages, grilled peppers and red onion, and a bowl of sweet curried cauliflower soup.

Snacks - A banana muffin, a snack ball, and a wedge of cantaloupe.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Day 19 - In Defense of SWYPO

I know it's against the rules - paleo-fying foods like pancakes, pizzas, etc. And I totally get why it's against the rules. I know those foods are a huge trigger for some people. Paleo pizza is good... but it's not ooey-gooey, cheesey-pizza good.

But, here's my rationalizing....

I don't see myself living a life without pancakes, cupcakes, pizza, bread of some kind, ice cream, etc. So for me, using this Whole30 to learn to love better-for-me versions of those things is important. I still try to keep those things reserved for treats, not an every-meal/every day deal, but when I eat them I enjoy them. Yeah, maybe it would be a good idea for me to totally get over the idea of dessert, but that's not too likely. Isn't it enough that I've learned to crave a bowl of fresh strawberries and kiwi after supper instead? For me, this is a huge victory. I'm eating really good food. I'm eating until I'm satisfied, and learning to be mindful of not over-eating just because something tastes good. And I'm not worrying about the scale, or points, or calories and fat grams or ANYTHING. This (with a few tweaks) is a way I can see myself eating long-term, not just for 30 days.

One could argue that life after the Whole30 is when I should be learning to enjoy paleo-fied versions of things, but I know myself. As soon as I'm "allowed" to have honey, you can bet I'll have a hard time not adding honey to a muffin recipe. This is the perfect time for me to learn how to enjoy foods in this state. I'm good with rules. And these rules (the what-to-eat/what-not-to-eat rules) are easy for me to follow. I really am learning a lot - about myself and about food - by doing this.

Breakfast - Scrambled eggs and sauteed kale (in ghee). One cup of decaf with coconut milk. I think it's safe to say that I'm over my caffeine addiction - no more Diet Coke and no more regular coffee! However I am most definitely not over my coffee addiction. Even when it's just decaf, that hot steamy cup helps me relax and ease into my mornings. I'm trying to decide if that's something I need/want to break. Right now, I'm happy just not being a slave to the caffeine.

Lunch - Another "bun" with leftover pork roast, guacamole and sliced tomato. Then a little more pork topped with guac and tomato. As much as I like those buns, I know it's not a good idea to abuse them.

Supper - Pan fried haddock (when it goes on sale, we've gotta enjoy it!) with an almond flour crust, seasoned with Creole seasoning, with a heaping serving of roasted cauliflower and asparagus.

Snacks - Since it's the feast of Saint Joseph (a particularly big deal for us in Canada), I made some chocolate cupcakes to celebrate. I halved the recipe and made 18 mini cupcakes. Now. A word about these cupcakes. They're not great. (I followed the recipe, and I happen to be a fairly proficient baker. Not my fault.) I didn't have the right kind of jam, so I reduced some frozen raspberries and thickened the sauce with a little tapioca starch. That part was delish. The cupcakes themselves were salty (even though I reduced the amount of salt), and I could really taste the olive oil. Maybe they'd be better with melted coconut oil instead? In any case, they were NOT a hit. I kinda like them when they're well-chilled, but the kids did NOT give them a thumbs-up. Also, a snack ball (now that I roll them in shredded coconut, my kids think they're getting Timbits when they eat them!) and half a banana.

P.S. When I say I had things like half a banana, or a couple slices of sweet potato, it's not because I only "allow" myself half a banana - it's just because I sometimes finish off things my kids don't eat.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Day 18 - The End of the Break

Well, tomorrow's Monday. That means hubby's back to work, and the kids and I are back to reality. It's been a great week - we did just enough "stuff" and just enough relaxing. I think it was a good pace for the little ones. Extra excitement (since Daddy was home all week) but not so much that it blew our routine out of the water. Tomorrow will be a bit of a shock to everyone's systems, but thankfully the forecast for the week is amazing so we'll be able to get out in shorts and t-shirts every day. That will take some of the sting out!

Breakfast - Two fried eggs and some cantaloupe. One cup of decaf with coconut milk.

Lunch - Some more chicken/guacamole stuff. This time I just ate it off a spoon. :) And a big bowl of vegetable soup.

Supper - A nice Sunday evening roast dinner. :) Pork sirloin roast with oven-roasted broccoli and a puree of butternut squash, sweet potato and apple. Francis, Baby Belle and I all loved the puree (Baby Belle ate three helpings and then licked her plate!), Princess ate it but didn't love it, and Music Man caused a 30 minute drama over not wanting his squash, but still wanting dessert! I guess you can't always please everyone!

Snacks - More of those Larabar knock-off snack balls. I think I need to stop making those...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Day 17 - Dreaming!

Apparently it's not uncommon for people to have strange food dreams in the midst of a Whole30. They dream about "cheating" with foods, often ones that aren't even their favourites, or wouldn't even have been worth the cheat.

Last night I dreamed I'd been taken hostage and held for 24 hours with no food or drink. When my captors finally decided they should give me something to keep me alive. So what did they give me? A slice of slightly dry, room-temperature pepperoni pizza. I sat there and stared at it, thinking about how hungry I was, but realizing that if I ate it I'd have to re-start the Whole30 after being released.

Wow. My subconscious is kind of an idiot. I mean, come on! If I were going to cheat in real life, I'd have a slice of cheesecake and a glass of wine or bottle of (gluten-free) beer. Not crusty take-out pizza! Heck, I'd be more likely to grab a handful of Reese mini peanut butter cups!

I have officially informed my subconscious (or is it unconscious?) to go ahead and indulge in something truly worthwhile tonight. I expect to dream of heaps of chocolate!

Breakfast - Oooooh, it was a SWYPO day! And I don't regret it one bit, either. See, I found a recipe for these burger buns, and all the ingredients were approved, so I took the plunge. So I had a fried egg and a slice of fried prosciutto on one of those buns. Totally Paleo Egg McMuffin! :)

Lunch. SWYPOed again! Another bun, this time filled with chicken salad (made with guac instead of mayo) and sliced tomato. Then I stuffed more chicken salad and tomatoes into a lettuce wrap.

Supper - Italian sausages with sauteed onions and sweet peppers, then a big bowl of vegetable soup (but with homemade chicken stock, instead of veggie broth).

Snacks - Half a Larabar (split it with Francis as a "treat" while we were out on a shopping date), one and a half snack balls, a banana, and a spoonful of leftover chicken salad as a bedtime snack.

P.S. Shopping is fun. Shopping at thrift stores generally stresses me out. (Even shopping at Winners gets on my nerves.) But I'm learning the fine art of maneuvering around Value Village. Last time I went I scored a pair of almost-knee-high black boots for $7.50 (it was 50% off day!) and today I got a pair of brand-new-looking Aldo sneaker-things for $14! I've found that being a different size and shape has even affected how I look at shopping - it broadens the range of things I'm willing to try. No more, "I'm too chubby to pull that off". Fun. :)

Friday, March 16, 2012

Day 16 - The Missing Component

How important is sleep? Very. And how important is it in the midst of a Whole30? Extra.

That's the one thing I feel like I'm missing out on during this experience. They encourage you to get lots of rest, even nap when you're feeling run-down, particularly in the first couple of weeks. Problem is, the quantity and quality of my sleep is generally dictated by my children. And considering the oldest of my three kids is only four, we have a lot of night-time wake-ups.


One day this will be a distant memory. One that I won't spend too much time reflecting on as I sip my second cup of hot coffee, in bed, at 9am on a Saturday.

Breakfast - Two fried eggs and three thin slices of sweet potato fried in coconut oil.

Lunch - Guacamole and grape tomatoes in a lettuce wrap with a side of baby bok choy.

Supper - More bok choy and fried sweet potato, this time with pan-fried haddock in an almond flour crust.

Snacks - One banana muffin and a couple of date/raisin/coconut/almond snack balls.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Day 15 - Half Way There!!

Feeling good, friends. Feeling really good. Can't believe I'm already at the official half-way mark of my Whole30! I plan to extend eating like this until Francis is finished as well, so we can start the reintroduction process together. But... I will add in an extra drink at the end of my 30 days. A girl can only go so long before she wants a glass of wine!

The longer I eat like this, the less desire I have to go back to eating the way I used to. Don't get me wrong - there's no way I'll stay this strict forever. But dark chocolate will always have a place in my life. And some mozzarella on my (coconut flour) pizza. Eating with my in-laws will always involve some white rice. But having a handle on my emotional eating, mindless eating and binge tendencies is something I don't want to give up. Food freedom is an amazing thing!

Breakfast - Fried eggs and prosciutto with a side of sauteed kale. Only one cup of coffee, and it was decaf!

Lunch - Leftover spaghetti sauce on spaghetti squash.

Supper - Grilled sausages and mixed grilled veggies - green peppers, zucchini and red onion.

Snacks - A couple of banana muffins, and a banana after supper.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Day 14 - Victory is Purple

I bought clothes yesterday. Cheap, clearance rack clothes at one of my favourite spots to shop. I wanted a little pick-me-up after having my head - ahem, my scalp - diagnosed. I wanted to buy something that I wouldn't normally pick up, but that I'd always wished I'd had the nerve to buy.

Skinny purple corduroy pants? Yes please! On for $10?! Even YESSER! Have I ever told you how much I love purple? Since losing the weight I've lost so far, I've been challenging myself to add some colour to my wardrobe. I'd fallen in a serious black/grey rut when I was overweight. The amount of purple I own now is staggering. (In addition to the pants, I also picked up a cute lilac cardigan for $5. Oh, and a black Adidas-style track jacket for $7.)

Now here's the kicker - the pants are a size two. Two. Not one-two. Just two. When I signed up for Weight Watchers back in May, I was sporting a size twelve - from the same store where I bought those twos. This is particularly exciting, because I was a solid four when I started this Whole30 two weeks ago. Score.

Breakfast - My wonderful, amazing and thoughtful husband made me an omelette with taco meat, green peppers and salsa. Also, I had coffee with coconut milk - the plan is to try going coffee-free tomorrow. We shall see...

Lunch - The end of the sausage & sweet potato frittata. I had made some guacamole to go with it, but the avocado was. not. good. Ick. The plan was to eat it in a lettuce wrap with tomatoes. So disappointing. I filled up by having some of last night's leftover spaghetti squash with meat sauce.

Supper - Oh. My. BBQed ribs and grilled onions, zucchini and asparagus. I did a dry-rub for the meat (salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder and onion powder), then sealed it in foil with a little white wine (and no, the wine didn't actually go in the food, so it's not really cheating). They slow-cooked in the oven for about two or two and a half hours at a low temperature. Then I made a batch of the barbecue sauce from Paleo Comfort Foods. I tasted it at the end, and while delicious, it was way too spicy for my liking. Curries should be spicy. Barbecue sauce should have a sweetness to balance the heat, in my opinion. So what's a sugar-free girl to do? Throw in a couple of finely chopped dates and a small handful of raisins, that's what! I let it simmer a little longer then blended it. Perfection! I'll definitely make that again. (And fortunately there's lots of sauce left for supper another night!)

A good friend had a baby a week and a half ago, and is having a difficult recovery. (Four days of labour and five hours of pushing will do that to a girl.) We signed up for two shifts of meal-bringing, but each meal that gets dropped off is supposed to do for two suppers. The problem is, these people are good Catholics so no meat on Friday. Our meals are supposed to cover tomorrow, Friday, Saturday and Sunday - I didn't want them to have to have a meatless meal on Thursday just to work around Friday's obligation, so it means making three separate meals.

Tomorrow, they'll have tacos. Who doesn't love tacos?! Friday is a broccoli and cheddar frittata with a big pot of vegetable soup. But Saturday - I'm stumped. If you'd just had your first baby and someone was bringing you food, what would you want?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Day 13 - Hair and Teeth

So my hair-loss situation has been down-graded from "panic-inducing" to diagnosed and cope-with-able. I do, indeed, have an autoimmune disorder, so now this is how my body will react to intense and/or prolonged stress for the rest of my life. Yeah, it kinda sucks that I'm stuck with it forever. But I'm so relieved to know it really is just my hair. It's not a symptom of anything worse. I've been given a topical steroid prescription which may help speed up the process of shedding and regrowth. Apparently it usually works on a 3-month cycle, so I should notice a tapering off in the amount of loss in the next few weeks.

Had a visit to my dentist today. Have I mentioned that having babies really messes up my body? Not only has it resulted in this bald-patch foolishness, but it wrecks my teeth, too. I got four fillings today. Four. In one shot. My mouth hurts. My head hurts. The anesthetic wore off between the first and second tooth, so I may have screamed and/or jumped a little when the drilling started up for the second tooth. 

I'm falling apart! Good grief. On to the food:

Breakfast - Fried eggs and sweet potato latkes, at my husband's request. Also coffee (of course) with coconut milk.

Lunch - Cubed chicken breast, an Italian sausage and sauteed baby bok choy. (Had to eat lunch with a sleeping baby on my lap again.)

Supper - Spaghetti sauce on spaghetti squash with loads of bell peppers.

Snacks - Another sausage, a bowl of cantaloupe, half a banana and half a muffin.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Day 12 - Jinxed It

Well, I jinxed it. Baby Belle did not sleep last night. That poor husband of mine was up with her every hour from 9:30 until 2:30am. Then she slept a two-hour stretch and was up for the day at 4:30am! So between the horrid sleep and being so early in his Whole30, I sent him to bed for two naps today.

Fortunately, we had a nice day otherwise. We headed to a brand new IKEA this morning - it's mammoth. You could honest-to-goodness get lost in there if it weren't for those perky little arrows on the floor. The kids had a blast, and we bought a few things to spruce up Music Man's new "big boy room", and organize some of their toys. After their naps, we hauled out the double stroller and went for a walk because it was gorgeous out. Plus-something-double-digit and just slightly overcast. And where did we walk? A produce market just down the street from us. About a 15-20 minute walk (with two dawdlers) brings us to a small market that sells all local produce. What a gem!

Breakfast - Frittata with diced Italian sausage, sauteed onions and shredded sweet potato. Coffee with coconut milk.

Lunch - I had two minutes to make lunch, and only one hand to eat it with, since Baby Belle crashed in my lap (for two hours!). Cubed chicken breast, cucumber slices and... two muffins.* (Well, one before lunch time when we were at IKEA and I was smelling those $0.75 hotdogs...)

Supper - Fried chicken (from Paleo Comfort Foods - YUM!!) and cabbage. (We got a GIANT head of cabbage for $1.50 down the street!) I shredded it and sauteed it in olive oil with some thinly sliced onion. Then I tossed in some garlic (fresh and powdered), two cubes** of homemade chicken stock and a couple tablespoons of tomato paste, and let it cook down for about half an hour. Even Baby Belle liked it!

Snacks - I didn't really snack today, other than that one pre-lunch muffin.

*Yeah, I SWYPOed. Big time. I think I'm okay with it though. This week (while we're on the go so much) I really need things that are quick, easy, portable AND that the baby can/will eat. So I made banana coconut muffins, with only Whole30-approved ingredients. (The only sweetness is from the bananas themselves.) They're delicious, and I'm pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoy them considering the lack of added sugar!

**When I make homemade stock, I always freeze some in ice cube trays then transfer the frozen cubes to a plastic freezer bag. It's great for when I only need a little bit of stock for steaming/sauteeing, or a 1/4 cup or so to go in the crockpot with a roast. I do the same thing with tomato paste, but with a mini ice cube tray.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 11 - Starting to Sleep

I don't want to jinx it, but the last two nights Baby Belle was only up twice during the night. This is down from 6-10 wakings per night! And since I'm not even the one dealing with her when she does wake up, I've had two consecutive nights of reasonable sleep! Sunday mornings are always busy with church and fellowship time, then our regular Skype date with family out east, but after lunch I got to spend some time working on the kids' rooms. Then after their naps they went out for a walk with Daddy-o and I got to hit those rooms hard. There is a ton of work that needs to go into re-organizing and cleaning all three bedrooms, but I was actually enjoying the work, and while working I was making a mental to-do list of all the sewing projects I'd like to tackle! My energy level just keeps getting better and better! I joked to a friend at church this morning: "Just imagine what I could accomplish if my kids could clothe, feed and entertain themselves!" But as much as the work does need to get done, I'm most happy about having more energy to devote to my three little monkeys.

Breakfast - Leftover sausages and peppers from last night tossed into some scrambled eggs with a side of roasted broccoli.

Lunch - The end of that yummy curried sweet potato soup from the other day with some cooked chicken breast tossed in.

Supper - More of those amazing sausages, served with green beans (steamed and tossed with some melted ghee and almond flour) and roasted asparagus.

Snacks - A banana topped with "cashalmond" butter.

Oh, and one more thing - I experienced my first real "craving" since starting this. I was making some granola bars for the kids (now that we're taking them off wheat, I'm weaning them off their "junk" by making homemade versions of their wheat-filled processed counterparts), and when I opened the bag of oats I swear I drooled a little. Oats! Raw oats! They smelled nutty and a little sweet and just heavenly. I almost stuck my hand in the bag for a taste (of raw, dry oats!) but I quickly came to my senses. Weird!

Day 10 - Hubby On Board

We had decided a while back that I'd start off my Whole30 first, and my husband would join in once he was off work for March Break. Both of us had heard some horror stories about the "low-carb flu" and other generally sluggishness associated with this type of eating, and we didn't think it would be fair to the kids if we were both detoxing at the same time. Surprisingly, my transition was incredibly easy. Day 2 was a little head-ache-y, but then again, it may have been the horrendously interrupted sleep from the night before. In any case, today was hubby's Day 1, and so far he's just really enjoying the food!

Since re-introduction of the eliminated foods is something we're taking pretty seriously, we've decided we'll create a schedule. Or, rather, a priority list of which things we want to attempt first. We'll work together and create a list we can agree on, so that means that for the sake of simplicity, I'll likely extend eating this way by another nine days so we can finish - and reintroduce - together. (I'll still do a "wrap-up" with measurements at the day 31-mark, though.)

Breakfast - Eggs scrambled with taco-seasoned ground beef, onions and salsa. The obligatory 2 cups of coffee with coconut milk.

Lunch - More taco meat, this time in lettuce wraps topped with sliced tomatoes and guacamole.

Supper - Whole30-compliant Italian sausages [*insert happy dance here*] with onions and three colours of sweet peppers sauteed in coconut oil and crushed garlic.

Snacks - A banana, an "energy bite" - a BIG one - and a cup of leftover curried sweet potato soup from last night.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Day 9 - Excited!

Breakfast - Two fried eggs with two sweet potato latkes and two cups of coffee with coconut milk.

Lunch - Bad, Jac! I had zero time to cook (the kids were beyond nuts today), so I nuked a leftover burger from last night and topped it with onion and salsa. (I need to be more prepared with meatless meals for Fridays. If only I were more of a seafood-fan...) I had cucumber slices and baby carrots just after lunch time.

Supper - Soup, inspired by Nicole. Onions, carrots, celery (slightly wilted!), sweet potatoes, homemade stock, loads of curry powder, some cinnamon, a run through the blender and some coconut milk to smooth it out. YUM!

Snacks - Some raisins with almonds, a banana topped with some homemade "cashalmond" butter. Another YUM!

And why am I excited? Because I have a new nephew! That brings the tally to nephews: 5, nieces: 0. I have one more sister-in-law who's expecting, so we'll find out soon-ish if there will finally be another girl besides mine!

I'm also excited because we're doing a big switcheroo tonight with the kids. Baby Belle will have her night time feedings taken away and moved to a different room (pray for that kid!) and Music Man is moving to a big boy bed in a different room ('bout time - he'll be three in May!). This could be a disaster, or it could make our lives SO. MUCH. BETTER. Please, oh please let this baby start sleeping!

Day 8 - How Drastic Is This?

It has been brought to my attention that perhaps in light of my mysterious hair-loss issues, that I shouldn't be making such a drastic change in my eating habits right now. I really think there's a lot of validity in that suggestion. When something is wonky, it probably doesn't make sense to throw in yet another variable to be considered when searching for a diagnosis.

So that got me thinking last night, as I was wrestling with a baby who had no intention of sleeping between 1 and 2am. How drastic is this really? On the outside, it's so. very. drastic. Big changes all around! I mean, this is a strict Paleo-style diet, and I have never been (or really even considered being) Paleo/Primal before this.

Let's break it down, shall we? (I do love a good break-down. And not just the emotional type.)

No grains: Well, I haven't been a wheat-eater since October, minus a couple of slip-ups. I eat oats about once a week, and corn once or twice a week. The biggest sacrifice here is that I was eating rice cakes every morning in place of toast.

No dairy: I used to drink cream in my coffee, but I cut that out in November or December (in favour of almond milk then, coconut milk now). The biggest dairy issue for me was cheese - on pizza, nachos, quesadillas, tacos, etc. So I was probably eating cheese about six times a week. That's a big change.

No soy: Other than the occasional splash of soy sauce in a stir-fry (which would amount to about three times a month, tops), the only soy I was consuming was in the form of highly processed, unfermented soy products. Like lecithin. I'm going to count this elimination for the win.

No legumes: Again, not an enormous loss for me. We often have hummus in the house, but I don't often eat it. I make soup with lentils in it about once every two months. The only biggie is peanut butter - I ate it nearly every day on those rice cakes. In the end, I'd like to be able to eat peanut butter again BUT I probably shouldn't be eating the big-brand, sugar- and salt-laden stuff that I was consuming before.

No sugar: Um, hello? That's a good thing. We all know sugar is practically poison. Yes, it's delicious. But man, oh MAN do I have issues with it! I have binge issues with certain trigger foods (almost all of which involve milk chocolate). I blame it (jokingly) on being weaned at 3 months and raised on a "formula" of equal parts water, evaporated milk and corn syrup. Yup.

So really, it's not that big a change, I don't think. Of course it's a change nonetheless, but it's helping in so many other areas. I can't believe how high my energy level is, in spite of never getting any quality sleep. Yes, at 8pm I'm tired, but I think that's normal. During the day I have enough energy to do way more than I was doing before starting. I'm cooking up a storm, playing more with my kids, and I even made a pair of shoes for a little baby girl. I can't remember the last time I had the energy to even think about sewing!

That said, I'm seeing my doctor on Tuesday, and if he's at all concerned that doing a Whole30 isn't a great idea right now (while we wait for a diagnosis), I'll follow his advice. I'll add back in some cheese, some rice, some white potatoes, and possibly some oats or quinoa as well. And wheat-free soy sauce, too. And a glass of white wine here and there...

On the plus side: I've been eating way more vegetables than I ever have before! I don't just mean number - though the other day we counted 17 kinds of veggies in the fridge, not counting different varieties of certain ones - but also the sheer quantity! I've been pretty good about eating vegetables at three meals a day, probably totaling between five and six cups of vegetables a day. I've been far more creative and adventurous in the kitchen. My whole family is trying new foods and loving them. I'm not craving junk food, and I have no problem passing up even my favourite homemade baked-goods.

Breakfast - Leftover Brazilian curried chicken stew.

Lunch - Two muffin-sized frittatas (with green pepper and sausage) smothered in salsa. I roasted a huge batch of cauliflower to munch with them, and my kids just started sharing with me! Win!

Supper - Sliders topped with sliced tomato, guacamole and onions sauteed in coconut oil with a side of asparagus.

Snacks - Half a banana, some cashews, some almonds and a few raisins. After supper I had an apple because I wanted something crunchy, and our carrots have run out.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Day 7 - Some Random Ramblings

Breakfast - Two muffin cup frittatas with sausage and green peppers. Two cups of coffee with coconut milk. Must get back to eating veggies for breakfast! Just. too. tired. to. cook.

Lunch - Prosciutto and fried eggs. YUM. (Thanks for the suggestion, Nicole!) Then guacamole with cucumber slices and cherry tomatoes to dip.

Supper - Leftover extravaganza! It was clean-out-the-fridge night. I had the garlic pork and "rice" from two nights ago topped with guacamole and a big ol' heap of baby bok choy.

- I have to stop making coconut butter. Even in very small batches, it's dangerous.
- Ditto with those cinnamon/raisin/almond "energy bites".
- I'm not craving junk food, but I'm craving the idea of "dessert". A bowl of sliced strawberries and sliced bananas tastes like heaven after the kids go to bed.
- I think I need to bulk cook (or par-cook) a bunch of veggies. Or at least have them washed and sliced in a container in the fridge. When I'm this exhausted, the last thing I want to do is slice bell peppers. I definitely didn't eat enough vegetables today.
- I feel like I'm missing out on what I could be experiencing, at least energy-wise. I "slept" from 10:30pm to 4:45am. But I was up at least six times. This baby of mine needs. to. learn. to. sleep.
- I think I need to start exercising again. I know we're not supposed to rush it, and let our bodies heal, but I miss my Jillian Michaels time.
- Fingers crossed for a better night and a better day tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Day 6 - Tired, and Time to Work on Snacking

Breakfast - Two fried eggs with two slices of prosciutto, a banana (didn't feel like cooking veggies this morning), two cups of coffee with coconut milk, and two raisin/almond/cinnamon smushed-up energy-ball-thingies. That was probably an error in judgment - I think it was just feeding a desire for sweetness. Oops. Live and learn

Lunch - Leftover shredded beef from the other night, over mixed greens topped with guacamole and cherry tomatoes. Now THAT is a way to use leftovers.

Supper - Brazilian Curry Chicken, baby bok choy. Then I had a banana because I'd baked chocolate chip cookies for the girls in my faith study group, and I wanted to head off any sweet cravings before they might hit. They never did. Score!

Snacks - Half a banana, half a strawberry (yes, half - I finished what Baby Belle didn't eat), two "energy bites" and about four cashews.

I have a really hard time snacking on vegetables. I think I need to get in the habit of making guacamole and other Whole30-approved dips to keep in the fridge, so I'll be more tempted to grab the bag of baby carrots from time to time. But I'm so. damned. tired. Baby Belle not sleeping all night and still getting up between 4:45-5:15am, awful meetings with confrontations, still worrying over this random balding I'm dealing with - I just want to curl up in my bed and nap for days. I cannot wait until my husband is home for a week for March Break - perks of being married to a teacher.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Day 5 - Energy, Other Stuff and a Confession

I am already feeling more energetic, even though I'm only five days in and I'm still not getting any more/better sleep. On the down side of things, it seems my digestive system is... rebelling. I won't say more, but I'm hoping this is just a passing phase.

Breakfast - Raw veggies, two fried eggs and a slice of fried prosciutto. Oh man, I just found a new favourite food! My husband even said he likes it better than regular bacon, so he's thrilled to know he'll have something delicious for special occasion breakfasts while he does his Whole30.

Lunch - Chicken salad (with guacamole in place of mayo) with sliced Roma tomatoes on lettuce wraps. Then a bowl of Sweet Curried Cauliflower Soup. Obviously, I made the soup without the honey. Honestly - I can't imagine that it needs it. The soup was delicious as it was. I think the apple and coconut milk are plenty sweet. Sure, honey-enthusiasts might enjoy the extra flavour, but I would never classify myself as one.

Supper - Garlic Pork & Rice (can you tell I'm enjoying the recipes on this site?), oven-roasted broccoli. And for "dessert", I dumped some raisins, blanched almonds and cinnamon in the Magic Bullet and gave 'em a whir. YUM.

Okay, confession time. I know the rules - weigh yourself on Day 1, and not again until Day 31. I know it's for good reason - we're not supposed to get hung up on weight-loss, because really that's a bi-product of all the good stuff we're meant to experience during these 30 days, not a goal.


I've been feeling sooo big the last few days. I know that I got hung up on the Weight Watcher's approach (and in my defense, it really did work for me - losing AND maintaining), but now that I'm eating significantly more protein and more fat, I was starting to suffer psychologically. My head plays games on me, weight-wise. It always has. For instance, even though I'm a full 25lbs lighter than when I got married, I don't see or feel the difference. Instead of focusing on what I've accomplished, I get caught up in what I still want to see happen.

Anyway. I decided at 10:30 this morning that I just had to check the scale. Just once. Just to know if my weight actually was going up, or if it was all in my imagination. Once I could be convinced that this way of eating wasn't actually setting me back in my weight-loss goals, I knew I could finish out the month without cheating on my scale fast.

Scale says: down 4lbs. New all-time low weight as an adult. Thanks, Whole30. I'm a believer now. And I promise to stay the heck off that little glass plate until this is over!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Day 4 - Limiting Socializing

We had yet another dinner invitation today. We had dinner with friends the last two nights (I was able to eat Whole30-approved dinners both times!), and tonight we were invited to go eat with my husband's family. While family dinners are always enjoyable, we had to say no this time. First, it's been taxing on the kids to be without their bedtime routine the last couple of nights. Second, I'd have to bring my own meal, which would suck. My mother-in-law is a really wonderful cook. I love the dinners she serves us! They're always simple, flavourful, loaded with veggies (which are always cooked just right), and there's always more than enough to go around. The problem is, they're (almost) always stir-fried meals. With soy sauce. Served with rice. Or char siu. And I love char siu! :(

All that considered, we declined the invitation for supper. We skipped the kids' nap (still not ideal) and make the 30-minute drive into town to visit for the afternoon. Supper was plopped in the crock pot this morning, so we could stay and play as long as possible and still come home to a hot meal.

Breakfast - Fried "rice" with diced chicken, red pepper and two "scrambled" eggs (cooked in ghee). Two cups of coffee with coconut milk.

Lunch - A quick coconut curry stir fry with chicken, red pepper and rapini. I've decided I'm so over rapini. I just don't love it. I only bought it because they were out of kale, and I was in the mood for a leafy green

Supper - Easy Paleo Shredded Beef and sauteed baby bok choy (cooked in coconut oil with garlic), and oven-roasted asparagus (with olive oil).

Snacks - A handful of cashews, a nibble of coconut butter, and a bowl of sliced bananas and strawberries.

That last one was a dessert, actually. I'm not sure if eating dessert deliberately and consciously is against the Whole30 rules or not. I got bad news from the doctor's office after church, so after napping with Baby Belle for an hour and a half, I made my lunch and still wanted comfort food. I wanted dessert. I wasn't really craving anything in particular, or even dying for sugar. I just wanted to go through the motions of having dessert to - what? Cheer myself up? Have snacks at the pity party? Who knows. In any case, I figured that even though I was definitely experiencing emotionally-driven eating, at least I was very conscious of it, and I was deliberately choosing to eat something that wouldn't set me back. I'll call it a win.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Day 3 - Too Good to be True

This feels too easy, folks. I've had a couple of fleeting thoughts about wanting junk food, but nothing serious. Certainly nothing I'd call a real craving. This afternoon I baked some cookies to take to a friend's house for supper, and man did they look good. I wanted one, for a moment, but I knew I wasn't going to give in. Instead, I went into the next room, closed my eyes, and imagined myself eating one of those cookies. I know exactly the texture - crisp against your teeth when you first bite in, but chewy and gooey in the middle. The chocolate chips were still melty and runny, and there was just enough saltiness to satisfy that sweet/salty combination. Boy, oh BOY, was that cookie good! And it was all just in my head. Strangely enough, by the time I finished my imaginary indulgence, the craving passed. I was satisfied.

Honestly, this is way too good to be true, which makes me afraid. Very afraid. I'm just waiting for the moment that every junk food craving I've ever had all comes racing back at once.

Breakfast - Two eggs, fried in clarified butter, served over two sweet potato latkes. (You MUST try those latkes!) Two cups of coffee with coconut milk.

Lunch - Roast chicken, four deviled eggs (four halves, that is) with homemade curry mayo, baby bok choy sauteed in olive oil with garlic.

Supper - Chicken Coconut Curry over a bed of cauliflower "rice". SO. GOOD.

Snacks - Guacamole (about 1/3 of an avocado worth) with cucumber slices (who needs chips?), two scoops of coconut butter, a banana and some cashews.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Day 2 - Get Ready for Some SWYPO

Snacks - Some cashews, several scoops of homemade cinnamon coconut butter, one hard-boiled egg.

Breakfast - In honour of Dr. Seuss, I wanted to go with green eggs and ham, but couldn't find any compliant ham. So I just went with green eggs - two fried eggs over sauteed (in clarified butter) green pepper and rapini. Also two cups of coffee with coconut milk. I think I could get used to drinking my coffee this way!

Lunch - Two sweet potato latkes, homemade guacamole on Roma tomato slices.

Dinner - Paleo pizza. Ah, yes. Sex with your pants on.

They tell you that for your Whole30 that you shouldn't try to "paleo-ify" any standard foods. No Paleo pancakes, no Paleo muffins, and no Paleo pizza - but that's just what I had for supper. Actually, I'd planned for this SWYPO before beginning my Whole30. Here's why:

I feel like I was really dragging my feet, and avoiding actually starting with my 30 days. I knew I needed to jump in, but I also knew we'd agreed to have dinner with another family tonight. These friends happen to follow a strict Paleo diet and eat around intolerances to dairy, soy and sugar - so I knew whatever they served would be at least 99% compliant. I checked to see what recipe they planned to use for their "pizza", and all the ingredients were safe. Of course it still breaks the "no Paleo pizza" rule, but I decided I was okay with it. For one thing, pizza isn't a big deal for me. It's not something I crave - I think I broke that addiction when I went gluten-free in November. And I realize that if it turns out I can handle cheese okay, there will still be room for the occasional grain-free pizza in my future. It's not a pressing desire, so I didn't expect eating it tonight would set me off. Also, looking at something made of almond flour, smothered in sugar-free tomato sauce and a big heap of veggies (it's Friday in Lent - no meat!) and no cheese doesn't in any way resemble what "pizza" is in my head, so I just thought of it as a brand-new Paleo delight. And it was yummy indeed!

Okay, fine. I SWYPO-ed. Sorry. But this is my Whole30, after all. I don't think Melissa and Dallas (or any other Whole30 police) are going to come knocking on my door. I know that I'm still getting the benefits that I need from this experience, and that's enough for me.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Day 1

Weight today - 129.2lbs, which is up about 3lbs from a few days ago. Lots of water-retention (I can't even tell you how much salt I've eaten in the last few days!), and probably some actual weight-gain, thanks to all my final indulgences.

Waist - 32" at smallest, 34" at navel. (Oy!)

Other notes:
-I have insane dark circles under my eyes. Surely this is thanks in part to Baby Belle who won't sleep longer than 90 minutes. I'm hoping, however, that some of it may be resolved by eliminating intolerances from my diet.

-My energy level is in the toilet lately. Of course, Baby Belle owns part of that blame as well, but I hope this helps!

-My hair is falling out at an alarming rate and in an alarming pattern. I'm still waiting on the results of some bloodwork and cultures, but several of the potential causes (low iron, low B12, low thyroid function, autoimmune disorder) could be greatly improved by doing a Whole30. I'm excited to see if my balding tapers-off over the next month! (Since I had bloodwork done yesterday, I can repeat at the end and it will be an accurate representation of what changed over the course of the Whole30.)

Food today:
Breakfast - Two fried eggs and a pile of kale, cooked in clarified butter. Two cups of coffee with coconut milk and cinnamon.
Lunch - Chicken and frozen mixed veggies, cooked in olive oil, crushed garlic and a little onion powder.
Supper - Leftovers from lunch.
Snacks - Hard boiled egg, a couple tablespoons of coconut, about 7 cashews and an apple. And water. Lots of water.

I felt really good today. I suspect the crash is coming, and the uncertainty of when it's coming might just do me in!