My Whole30 Journey: Week 3
Well, week 3 is in the books! I guess it's getting pretty serious now.
My body started feeling better near the beginning of week 3 after a long spell of sickness. But a couple other things unexpected and pretty terrible started happening.
First, I started having non-whole food cravings again. Not strong, just naggings. I wanted ice cream on the way home from work [specifically a milk shake]. I wanted what my husband was eating when he came home at night [he's not always down with healthy food]. I wanted a sausage egg and cheese mcmuffin [do I even like these?!?]. I didn't really have a lot of cravings while I was sick, so I guess I just found it weird how overwhelming they were. I began to wonder if I would ever not be addicted to foods that are not pure.
And then....I started getting bloated!!! I mean really???? It was unnaturally so. My "bathroom habits" were basically non-existent. It was obvious by the tightness of my wedding ring that I was swelling up. I became extremely frustrated - I started thinking, if I put 99.5% all natural things in my body and I'm still going to feel like this, why not just give into the cravings?!
But......I persevered. [Yay!] I had come so far, I could not give up. I have still experienced sustained energy, and that is worth oh so much! I looked online and learned that my symptoms were not abnormal for people in their third week, and it felt good to know I was not failing somehow. So I decided, over and over, craving by craving, to keep going. And by the end of week 3, I was back to a normal pace of less cravings, less bloating, and more will power. Praise the Lord!
There's so much up and down with this food lifestyle change. Yes, in many ways, it seems automatic and not hard. The rewards ARE worth the willpower. But sometimes it feels very restrictive and daunting, and it's hard to keep your mind in a safe space, and not give into those emotional eating episodes that I previously talked about during week one.
As far as my food intake goes, it's been a lot of the same. Eggs, avocados, salad, roasted veggies, compliant tuna and chicken salad, bananas and tangerines are the main things that come to mind. I did try a couple of dishes from The Defined Dish, which I talked about last week. I had a winner in Chinese Orange Chicken!
I tried my hand at my own stuffed peppers, with homemade marinara and cauliflower rice. They were great and fed me for a meal for 3 days!
I tried this Egg Roll Bowl - which would have been delicious if I hadn't of decided to SALT IT 50 MILLION TIMES. I have no idea what I was doing! By the time I got done with the dish, it was like licking a salt block and completely inedible. I was devastated! But I am going to try it again at some point.
There is SO MUCH cooking involved in Whole30 meals, and it's something I think everyone should fully realize before they start this journey. I have never ran the dishwasher so many times in a week, in the years I've ever owned a dishwasher [I can't imagine not having a dishwasher with all this cooking!]. Lots of meals require a lot of ingredients, and in case you did not know - eating healthy isn't cheap. Mainly because whatever you buy deteriorates quickly and is therefore consumed quickly, so I find myself shopping a couple times a week, at least. Deals are hard to come by at the "regular" supermarket. But like I saw the other day on a quote...
Maybe we shouldn't question so much why eating healthy is more expensive, but ask why eating unhealthy is so cheap.
Just food for thought. Yeah, the extra costs really stinks - but if you want a better whatever, you have to give it a little bit more. This includes food. And no matter your budget, eating healthy [or at least, MORE healthy] can still be done.
We're fed this conception that convenient is better, and somehow acceptable. Not judging anyone - taking advantage of convenience is basically me and my entire life journey in a nutshell, and my life is not even as crazy as most. But in our world of instantaneous satisfaction, we are deterred by the thoughts of working hard to get what we want. And while this could definitely apply to a lot of things in life, food and health is one that is definitely resonates with me now. Instant is sometimes good when it comes to food, but it's never the best!
I told you, Whole30 makes you think deep!
I have A LOT of feelings and thoughts running into my last week and seeing the finish line in site. I'm trying to plan out exactly how I want to continue eating. I want to introduce things back in to see what my "triggers" are, but I'm so scared that everything I have eliminated ARE my triggers! And even though this was not a food weight loss program, I know already without weighing in that I have lost weight, which had made this lifestyle even more advantageous. I can see this way of eating working really well for weight loss, coupled with regular exercise. What compromises can I make? There is some serious fear about reverting back to my "old ways", like a domino effect.
Which I can honestly, HONESTLY say --- I never want to go back to eating the way I was before!
I'm not even complete with the 30 days yet, and it's already been worth the roller coaster ride!
I'll have a recap of week 4, conclusions about my "new" eating patterns post Whole30, and a comprehensive list of my Whole30 non-scale victories (NSVs) coming next week!