I made it through the first part of whole30, and now am in part 2, the reintroduction phase. One of my issues with whole30 is it's not really only 30 days, it's actually 42 days. Yep, you heard me right. Because they say that when you start reintroducing food groups, you eat one food group for one day. Then you go back to the whole30 diet for two days before introducing the next food group. And even then you are only allowed to eat that one food group! If you've already reintroduced dairy for example, and had no issues with it, you stop eating dairy again for another 9 days. You can't have milk in your cereal if you're introducing grains. You can't have ice cream after dinner the day you do legumes. You have to wait to have cheese pizza because you're not supposed to mix food groups. What the heck?
Anyway, today I am doing my first reintroduction and decided to use a recipe I found awhile ago on Pinterest. It's called "Apple Pie Quinoa" and is found on Food Babbles. They said, "After a healthy start to my day by enjoying this apple pie quinoa, I quickly came to realize this is just the thing to calm your sweet tooth." I had high expectations for this recipe. I mean, APPLE PIE.
To keep it in line with the whole30 reintro program, I subbed the skim milk for coconut milk. I also added some nutmeg. As I was cooking it, it smelled delicious and I couldn't wait to eat some! This morning while heating it up it again smelled delicious... sort of. Then I took a bite. Blech! It was super BLAND. I added some milk, a lot of cinnamon, and more sugar than I thought I should. It still was gross. Now, I've heard some post-Whole30-ers saying that food doesn't taste the same after whole30. Things are disgustingly sweet, and taste fake and chemically. This was not the case with this quinoa. It was plain old bland. I am a person who likes really flavorful food, I always put more in than the recipe calls for when it comes to spices. This recipe just did not cut it. It tasted nothing like apple pie, nowhere near sweet, and cinnamon was just a smell. If I make it in the future, I will halve the quinoa, and double the spices and sugar. I think that might fix the problem. I'm off to eat some popcorn now.
I think it was beneficial, but I don't think it's a long term sustainable lifestyle for me right now for 2 reasons:
1. Expense. We are on a grad school, newlywed budget. I spent a lot of money on foods that were compliant. While I always try to eat fresh foods, our budget depends a lot on us having filler foods in our diets like pasta and rice. Using those helps stretch all the vegetables and meats for a few days longer than they do now.
2. Time. I am in the depth of writing my thesis right now. I simply don't have the time to cook all of my meals fresh each day. I have been doing really well with it, but there were some mornings, and evenings, where it was a little much for me to take 20 minutes to cook up something quick and still make it to work on time, or to bed on time.
I will continue to incorporate a lot of the philosophy of whole30 into my meals, avoiding sugar where possible, eating lots of fresh veggies and fruits. Preparing most of our meals at home. Things like that.
Since I haven't updated since week 2, here's the general overview of how things went:
Days 1-22: I was unreasonably grumpy. Like perma-PMS grumpy. My energy was still horrific, wanting naps. I even cried uncontrollably some mornings because I was so tired. Also, whole30 is supposed to 'reset your body' including hormones, so things were really freaky.
Bless my husband for putting up with me. Around Day 20, I read a post in the forums that said if you have a history of depression, Whole30 will screw up your system like crazy, they referred to a discussion they had with their doctor which was very medical-y and scientific talking about serotonin levels and carbs or something.... Which really explained a lot of what I was feeling.
I stopped having cravings around Day 20 as well. Before that it was a daily battle around dinner time. I craved foods like hush puppies, cheese quesadillas, ritz crackers. After awhile I think the 'cravings' were really desire for convenience. It's just so dang easy to run to the Chick-Fil-A and order a sandwich. It would leave me with a whole half hour or more in the evening that I could read or work on my thesis! I did not cave once though. And my husband was good to text about it or say "I want a Reeses" to. He always said that I really didn't want one, or that I can't go to the fast food place. I have not had a craving for over a week! Even when I sniffed a pan of cookies (turned out it was raisins not chocolate chips, so there was no temptation at all). People will say that if you eat a lot of fruit on whole30, you will still get cravings because of the sugar. I ate fruit the whole time, quite a bit I think (2-3 servings a day) and for me, the cravings did go away.
I no longer have to use an alarm. And I don't cry in the mornings. It's still tough every few days, but nothing compared to what it was before. I also notice that I still get slumps, but they occur later in the day and aren't as debilitating as they were before.
I have not been nauseous since Day 6. This is a pretty huge thing for me, I basically was constantly nauseous for the last year.
While a lot of my issues that I started whole30 to help out with were explained as "stress" by the doctor. Now, I am still under the same amount of stress as before, but I am definitely feeling better. Not as much as I would have liked to, but there is an improvement.
But I am looking forward to hush puppies and quesadillas again.
There is a total of 14 shawls. If I am being really honest with myself, I only really want to keep 2 of them for myself based purely on looking at the pictures. SO that means a lot of shawls/scarves will be up for grabs! Some will be raffled off to you lovely readers, and some will go into the Etsy shop.
I'm so glad you're following along in this adventure!
I got to venture to the exotic land of Townsend to take a class during the Smoky Mountain Fiber Arts Festival. The Festival as a whole was a huge disappointment. There weren't many vendors, and only one food vendor showed up. And they only had hot dogs and barbecue with a total of 5 items on their menu. Yep. 5. I was expecting a lot more booths in tents outside instead of crowded into the small rooms at the venue. I was expecting funnel cake and homemade rootbeer. And people shearing sheep and spinning yarn and sitting around chatting and knitting. I wanted it to be a FESTIVAL. But is wasn't. Sad day.
But the class I took was fantastic and I'm super glad I got to be a part of it. It was worth travelling for the class alone, and I would have happily taken this class if it hadn't even been a part of the festival. It was a Shibori Itajime dye class. I may have a new hobby, once I can save up to buy supplies....
I like to be early to things, and I happened to be the first person to show up. I sat down and observed the materials. A lot of them looked like typical dye items: Dye, crockpots, drying racks. But there were also blocks that looked like they belonged on a playground more than in a dye class...
Thankfully everything was explained and we were off. You use the blocks as a resist for the dye when you dye the fabrics. Here's one of my folded and wrapped scarves. (We got to make 4)
And because we all are unique individuals, we folded, wrapped, and dyed our scarves differently. It was interesting to me that some ended up very vibrant and bright, while others came out more muted.
Finally, this puppy almost made up for the disappointing rest of the festival:
The other day at Knit Night, one of the ladies had a new knitting book: Curls . It was passed around and oohed and ahhed over.
The discussion led to how many of the objects in the book various ladies wanted to make. Which led to one of them mentioning a "Start at the beginning and work your way to the end" approach. It was generally decided that while a good idea, it probably wasn't that executable due to the knitting project ADD many knitter have.
I thought about that for a bit (ok, a couple hours). I think I'd like to take on the challenge of beginning at the first project in the book, and knitting all of them, in order. It can't be that bad. And yes, I will have other projects going on at the same time, I mean, I won't quit swapping or making blankets for Project Linus or neglect the Christmas list. (I've already got 5 out of 16 people crossed off!That means I have their presents completed and ready to go!)
As I looked over the patterns, I noticed that while I would love to have some of them for myself, I wouldn't keep all of them. What would I do with 16 shawls? Seriously? I barely use the 2 that I already have.
So, my friends and faithful blog readers, as I embark on this journey I will give each of you the opportunity to receive one of the wraps/shawls/ scarves that I make as I go through this book of loveliness. Multiple times, actually.
All you have to do is stay tuned, follow the blog so you don't miss a post, and giveaways will start up soon! Soon as in, after I order the book and find some suitable yarn to start the first pattern in it.
The other day one of my Facebook folks posted this link,
then mentioned that they ‘don’t agree’ with #4. A few other people jumped on
the bandwagon and agreed that #4 is not possible.
I am going to jump on my soapbox here, and tell you this: if
you are still craving things like cake, candy, cookies, and so forth, then you
didn’t really quit sugar. You quit
I have been FULLY sugar free for 3 weeks now. The only form
of ‘sugar’ I have is in fresh fruit, and I only eat one serving a day, usually a banana or apple. And I
don’t have cravings anymore. I did at first, really strong, agonizing ones, but
I don’t have them anymore.
In my opinion, if you don’t want sugar cravings you have to
completely give up sugar, all sugar, in any form. In my observation people “give
up” sugar, when all they are really doing is giving up the C’s: cookies, cake,
Coke, and candy. Ahem. There is sugar in more than those things. While giving
those up will benefit your healthy, you cannot claim to have given up sugar.
You have given up treats.
There is a huge difference.
Let me open your eyes a bit to some items that have sugar in
them, that if you keep eating them, you are going to continue to have cravings
for those treats you gave up. And yes, I looked at labels on food items that
are currently in my fridge (but I am not eating, because I have legitimately
given up sugar) or on my regular shopping list. These items actually have sugar
added to them.
-Pre-packaged lunch meat
-Spice mixes (out of the over 25 spices we have,
only about 5 have no sugar in them. Only one mix has no sugar in it. This means
no curry mix or Jamaican jerk rub or lemon pepper)
-Salsa (some brands are sugar free)
-Bread (both white and whole wheat)
There’s also those natural sugars that will still cause
those cravings to manifest. In order to stop the cravings you will also have to
give up things like:
Finally, you will have to give up artificial sweeteners.
Why? You ask. Technically they aren’t sugar, so they aren’t harmful.
Umm…. You’re brain can’t tell the difference between fake
sugar and real sugar and natural sugars. If you are using artificial sweeteners
like stevia, sweet n low, and all those, your brain is still processing them as
sugar which in turn lights up the addiction part of your brain which will perpetuate your cravings. You won't get away from the cravings. EVER.
If you have “given up” sugar, but are still having
cravings, I’m sorry, but you did it wrong.
So, PLEASE don’t whine about giving up sugar but still
having cravings. Or how hard it is to give up sugar, when all you really did
was give up treat sugar. Because some of us have really, truly given up ALL
sugar. We have had migraines, rashes, nausea, and even in some cases tremors,
sweating, anxiety and depression, and insomnia. All of these are symptoms of
drug withdrawal, so I think it says a lot about sugar if you have these same
symptoms when you FULLY and COMPLETELY give it up.
Give up sugar for real, and then come back and talk.
As I wrote before, the stash doesn't appear any smaller, but at least I know I can do it. And yes, I will keep going, except for one treat this weekend. You see, I've got a fiber arts festival that I'm going to, and I want to have the option to buy a skein. AFTER I take my lovely dye class.
I'm excited for the class, not so sure about buying yarn though. It's an option, not a requirement. I'll see if I can make it 200 days?
As a graduate student working two jobs, and doing side hustles like nobody's business, it sometimes is hard to keep this in mind. It helps to plan ahead, doing the little things like packing lunch the night before, planning my outfit, and even planning my breakfast in advance so the morning goes smoothly enough that I can sit and spend some time with my scriptures and kneeling in prayer before heading out the door.
I've been desperately attempting to move some of my stash out of my stash since the New Year. I have gone Cold Sheep (96 days and counting!). I have projects galore, in my head at least.
But somehow, my stash has exploded beyond the tupperware in it is supposed to be confined to. I could pretend I don't know what happened. I really could. But alas, I can't. There are two reasons:
Reason One: I have several friends who have attempted to knit or crochet, or currently are knitters and crocheters, who give me yarn. I've received more yarn in the past 3 months for free (or for cookies in one case) than I have ever before.
I admittedly sold some of it on Craigslist. It was quite the achievement for me. But it didn't do much for my stash. Perhaps I should try listing some more on there to see if I can move a couple more skeins out?
I uploaded the entire stash to my Ravelry page, listing the majority of it on the "Will Trade or Sell" page. I got one inquiry, but no go. Maybe Craigslist is the way to go on that? Or Ebay?
I've used up some for Project Linus blankets. One is already completed, one is in progress, and one is in my head screaming to get out. I might let it out, it should go pretty fast and use up quite a bit of yarn... I also have the good intention to make some baby hats for the NICU too.
But alas, those do nothing for the Second Reason my stash is not going away;
I'm not knitting fast enough.
There are not enough hours in the day currently for me to get the knitting in that I would like to get in. I'm in the throes of thesis writing and trying to get all the loose ends of grad school gathered up and woven in. Sadly, that leaves little to no time for crafting. (As I type this I should be writing my thesis or at least reading some more research papers for it.)
If you haven't already read my day 10 rant, go ahead and read it. And the Day 11 one too.
I'd like to start out by saying, I think I might be over the hump. I did not want or 'crave' any fast food today. No desire for hush puppies. No near-to-tears over a chicken quesadilla tray at Cook-Out. Just a lingering thought that a Reese's would be nice, but not a "i'm going to kill my husband if I don't get a Girl Scout cookie NOW" urge.
As far as my psychological relationship with my food, well, I feel like it's gone down hill. Never in my life have I dreaded eating. Yes. I dread eating. I wake up in the morning and try to reason with myself about eating breakfast even if I'm not hungry. My understanding of Whole30 is that you shouldn't be hungry between meals, but if you are still in the early stages of the program, you HAVE to eat even if you AREN'T HUNGRY. Psh. If my body says it's not hungry, I'm not going to force food into it. Conversely, if my body says it is hungry, I'm going to feed it. End. Of. Story.
I seriously do not want to eat. Ever.
Whole30 also bans dairy and soy. They hail coconut milk and coconut butter as the center of the universe best dairy replacement ever. I'm pretty sure I'm allergic. I have developed a horrible, non-itchy rash that has spread quite rapidly. The only thing different about my routine (all of them) is that I have ingested some whole fat coconut milk. I first had it on Tuesday, when the rash appeared. I finished the can on Thursday and am not going to try any more for a couple of days to see if the rash goes away.
I've also googled it. Turns out for some people eating no gluten/carbs causes a rash similar to the one I have. It could be the influx of eggs. I eat eggs regularly, but on whole30 I am eating about 1000x the amount of eggs I usually eat. Or avocado. But I'm pretty sure it's the coconut. Either way, if it's not eating gluten-y carbs or being allergic to coconut, I have a dr appointment next week to take care of it if it's still around.
This is also the time when I should be experiencing "boundless energy". I'm still waiting on that one. I think I might be close, but it would have been nice to have shown up by now since folks say it should have.
And I broke another "rule". On those days where I was on the edge of sanity, I pulled out the tape measure and measured my waist because I needed SOMETHING to keep me going a couple more days. Yes, you aren't supposed to measure your body or weigh yourself while on Whole30, but where I'm not seeing a whole lot of the other promised results (ahem, all of them) I decided I had to do something. After making the measurement, I couldn't find the paper that I had written down my starting ones on. While I remember my weight perfectly, I think I might remember the waist, but definitely not the others. I've lost 2 inches already, but seriously? I can't tell. Can not tell.
After my little rant yesterday I went to the Whole30 online community. Actually, I just googled "Quitting Whole30".
Turns out that days 10 and 11 are the days when most people quit, or want to quit. So there we go, the first Whole30 timeline item that I actually fit into the norm with. I still really want to stop, but figure I will hang in here for a few more days in the hopes that the promised energy levels will appear.
The super difficult part of this yesterday was making my husband's lunches for his first two shifts of the week. I usually eat a piece of cheese or two while making them. And I couldn't. I sat for a moment looking at the cheese crumbs in my hand and had a moment of silence for them before putting them in the garbage instead of my mouth.
I stocked up on chicken, added to the fish I bought last week we should be okay for the rest of Whole30. But of course, I underestimate my husband's ability to pack away food almost every time we eat. From here on out I should only need to pick up some minor meat items, like the compliant hot dogs I found and use for breakfasts and the 'bacon' I found too. I haven't tried that yet, so if it's gross it won't appear in our fridge again.
Finally, I saw that a lot of people were talking about how their stomach hurt and they were having a lot of stomach issues. Yet NO ONE suggested making the meals smaller and having snacks. While this is working for me, it also makes me a little concerned that no one else has discovered this. Is the no snacking rule really that rigid?
I'm on Day 10 of Whole30 and I've noticed some things about the effects so far of the program.
I no longer have the crazy gastric symptoms I was having last week. Which I am so grateful for. I still feel exhausted almost constantly. I plan on starting some mild exercise this week to see if that will help, along with being more strict on my getting to bed routine.
I do not feel sick after I eat anymore, for the most part. I never really ate a whole lot of proteins or veggies for breakfast, because they made me sick. I still feel a little residual of this each morning after eating, and think that part of the diet will go rather quickly back to my smoothie or a bread based food (cereal, waffles, muffins, etc). I've completely abandoned the "no smoothie rule". Why? Because I constantly feel hungry, but when I sit down to eat a legitimate meal, my body can't handle the amount of food Whole30 says I should be ingesting at each meal. I have to break it down a little or I will be right back where I was last week, sick with no 'real' reason to call in to work.
Now, here's the biggest beef I have with the program. They constantly refer to breaking your old unhealthy psychological food habits and creating a new "healthy psychological relationship" with food. THIS IS NOT HAPPENING. In fact, I feel like the exact opposite is happening. I mean, is it 'psychologically healthy' to nearly burst into tears when my husband points out that I can't eat the croutons on my salad? NO! And it's not because I binge on croutons and they're causing psychological damage when I eat them (which only happens in restaurants btw).
I don't think it's 'psychologically healthy' for me to spend most of my day really, REALLY wishing I could have a single mini-blueberry muffin, or a roll, or a single freakin' tortilla. I've suddenly become OBSESSED with food! I spend a lot of time consciously avoiding looking at the reeses or daydream about pancakes, which I don't eat very often in the first place. Then get super frustrated and angry that I can't have just one. I should not start crying just because someone said my relationship with croutons and restaurant rolls is 'unhealthy'. Nor should I cry when I think about Sunday morning waffles and realize that I let someone else tell me that they aren't 'good' for me psychologically.
According to Whole30 if I have so much as a lick of a Reeses, my brain and body will react in the same way a drug crazed addict's will respond. I will suddenly uncontrollably eat all the sugar and 'junk' food in sight. Then drive to the store to buy and eat more!
This is ridiculous! Rice is not going to kill me! A tortilla won't send me into a spiral of binge eating, self loathing, and suddenly feeling horrifically sick and magically being fat.
While I am trying, really trying to keep this attitude in check, it's really difficult. And I honestly don't think I've had, or ever will have, a "unhealthy psychological relationship" with food. I enjoy food, but once I'm full, I'm full and I stop. This diet still promises great things, but I feel that the emphasis on 'psychology' is a bit much for people like me.
(If you made it through the post, I thank you very much for allowing me to rant.)
I've been keeping a running journal of how it's going day by day. Hopefully this will help someone out there know a little more about what a Whole30 looks like. I found some other blog posts like this majorly helpful as I geared up to start mine!
Shopping today was interesting. I read labels like crazy
hoping to find some sausage or other spicy type meat that was compliant. No go.
No lunch meat either. So I stocked up on Tilapia (at the request of my
husband), some chicken, and some beef ‘hot dogs’ that were compliant, in
addition to my regular fresh veggie and fruit stock up.
I also started reading the labels on our spices at home, in
the hopes of finding something that would help eggs taste better. I was
surprised to find that some of our spice mixes are non-compliant. Did you know
that some of them have “dehydrated corn syrup”? Who even came up with that? I
have a feeling this first week is going to be a slow learning process before I
can switch to a more auto-pilot mindset.
Now, to the nitty gritty, real deal, here’s how it’s going
part of the post.
I have heard horror stories about the first couple of days
being horrific. Withdrawal symptoms similar to hard drug withdrawal (shaking,
sweating, nausea, etc.) Migraines! Pain! Death!
Ummmm….. I just feel kinda hungry, even though I am eating
plenty. In fact, I feel like I’m eating more than I normally do because there’s
no ‘filler’ food in my meals like the crust of pizza, or rice with the
chicken. The worst part for me so far is
the almost unbearable compulsion to eat the cookies! Eat some Reese’s! Make
Waffles and drench them in syrup!!!
I was feeling kind of grumpy. Bad planning on my part made
day 2 also a Fast Sunday. I had very little patience with the Primary kids, and
had to talk myself down from it. I got
home and ate a banana, but when I went to cuddle with my husband (he works
nights so I snuggle up to him even if he’s snoring, for a nap) I started
crying. Not all out bawling, just uncontrollable silent tears. I asked him
later if he knew I was crying and he said no. It was weird.
I read on a blog that I’m not supposed to feel hungry while
on Whole30. But I feel hungry. I am completely convinced that it’s my body
thinking that it can’t be full without rice or pasta or cookies. I swear that’s
what’s going on because normally my stomach can’t deal with 2 chicken breasts,
2 celery stalks, a cup of spinach, a whole banana, a handful of raw almonds,
and some raspberries in ONE MEAL.
The wonderful early morning energy and all day energy I felt
on day 3 is gone. GONE! I feel like I used to, waking up is rough, just not I
feel like I might have a hangover rough. And I even took a nap. I’m hoping this
goes away again, and soon. This was one of the major reasons I’m doing Whole30, my horrific energy levels.
Also, the gastro-intestinal symptoms that the book (and
website) said would start between days 10 and 14 have already started. Forums
online have people saying that they have these symptoms the ENTIRE DURATION of
Whole30. I hope that isn’t the case with me.
I’ve officially reached pre- Whole 30 energy levels. Waking
up this morning was horrific.
Add to that, I can’t tell if I’m hungry or not. My stomach
keeps growling, sometimes uncomfortably. But when I do the ‘test’ of asking
myself if I would eat fish and broccoli, I answer ‘no’. Which supposedly means
I’m not hungry. But maybe I am hungry, I just don’t want broccoli.
I feel like I’ve been doing well with using a variety of
foods. I stocked up a bit again yesterday and made sure I bought things I
haven’t been eating this week so I don’t get tired of them. I’ve been
experimenting with different spices and even made compliant buffalo chicken!
But man, I just want a pizza and some milk and cookies.
I guess it’s going to take a little longer for my body to
get used to the whole ‘no snacking’ rule, because I think that might be the
culprit. My body thinks it needs to eat every 2 hours (like an infant does) but
I’m not eating that often anymore. I’ll give it a little longer before deciding
if I should add an afternoon snack back into my schedule.
(Later in the day)
I feel sooooo sick, like I should be puking but I’m not. My
body is not happy with me. I officially
decided to abandon the no snacking rule for now. I had a small lunch, and plan
on a snack in a bit. Followed by a small dinner after knit night. I just don't think my size body can handle that much food at once without getting sick. This is something I noticed pre-Whole30, so I'm going to go back to smaller meals, with snacks. Maybe after I recover a little I'll try the 3 big meals again.
I made it. We even went to a restaurant today. I almost lost
it when John said he gets my croutons, but he was right and he’s been doing
AWESOME at keeping me on track. I’m just really looking forward to being able
to eat restaurant rolls, pancakes (I haven’t wanted those for a looooong time,
and I suddenly can’t get them out of my mind), and allow myself a Reeses!
I had a friend ask me if I had tried “cauliflower rice” yet.
No. And I won’t do cauliflower rice (as of now). Why? Because I feel like it
isn’t Whole30 compliant. If we’re not supposed to make Paleo pancakes or Paleo
cookies, I don’t think paleo rice should be made either. For me, it’s not in
line with the spirit of Whole30, that you need to break a cycle of bad eating
habits. And rice is a filling food that some people eat mindlessly, so why add
pretend rice if it’s going to psychologically fill an unhealthy need instead of
being a healthy choice?