Today marks a week since the 30th day of my Whole 30. If I had written this post last Wednesday, the big bold headline would have been I LOST 13.6 POUNDS! But having had the opportunity to ponder the other aspects of my Whole 30 experience, I've achieved so much more than just weight loss.
There is a whole list over at Whole30.com of possible benefits a graduate of the Whole 30 may have seen (174,203, to be exact). Of all of these, here are my highlights:
- Yes: amazing weight loss! To be fair, weight loss was one of the biggest reasons I decided to tackle the Whole 30. As I've shared before, due to a foot injury, my ability to exercise declined dramatically in 2013 and although I still ate fairly "healthy", the number on the scale caught up to me. Although I'm rehabbing my foot (successfully but slowly), the intensity level of my workouts is still lower than I'd like it to be. This makes the weight loss even more amazing: I did not have to kill myself with crazy workouts to see these results. Moreover, if Daddy M is to be believed, the weight fell off all the "right" places. Unlike other rapid weight loss experiences I've had in the past, based on how I look and how clothes fit, it appears that the weight loss was actual fat loss!
- Healthier skin and nails. Another major motivator for me was the desire to improve my skin. I continually battle adult acne - particularly around my jawline and chin. Although my skin is not 100% clear as I write this overall, I've noticed clearer skin. Furthermore, my nails are rock solid (despite the total absence of dairy over the last month)!
- I've kicked the cravings! This is the BIG one. The biggest surprise. The most amazing change. The change with lasting, sustaining potential! I'm not craving the "junk" - even the "healthy junk". When Day 31 came, I didn't want to go crazy. I started the day with this Paleo-friendly smoothie from Danielle Walker of Against All Grain (the only non-Whole 30 ingredient was a touch of honey). Then I made a tweaked, Whole 30-compliant version of this sweet potato tuna salad (using Paleo mayo in place of the hummus) from Brittany Mullins of Eating Bird Food. In the days that followed, the non-Whole 30 foods I did try didn't tantalize me or suck me in to falling off the wagon.
So where to go from here? My current plan is to keep going! I'm going to relax the sugar restrictions a bit (a touch of honey or natural sweetener here or there). I plan to let myself do some occasional dietary "off-roading" for special events. One thing is sure: I have no desire to go back to the way things were! Fortunately for me (and my family), Daddy M and the kids have LOVED the recipes I tried out during my Whole 30 (if you missed them and area looking for some foodspiration, here are my recaps for Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, and Week 4). I'm looking forward to continuing to explore new recipes, as well as evaluate how I can modify some of our favorite recipes to make them work with this new nutritional focus.
Thanks so much for letting me share! Have you completed a Whole 30? What surprised you the most?