Saturday, January 8, 2011

Whole30 Week One (Truckin' Along On The Paleo Highway)

So, I've made it through one solid week of Whole30. I had set the bar a little extra high for myself, since I feel I need to go the extra mile to balance my body. Also, setting the bar extra high, for me at least, means that if I falter a little, I'll still be doing way better than I was. I'm not one of those people who, if I slip up a little, throws it all out the window. I just get right back in the saddle.

Here are some of the details of how my week went:

The first few days, I had some times that felt like I was detoxing a little- low energy, some minor sugar cravings and a feeling of being mentally hungry, even when my stomach was full. I found that having 1/3 cup of thawed frozen berries with some coconut milk was a nice way to help that mental hunger. I notice I get tired earlier in the evening- around 8pm. Is my body trying to force me into earlier bedtimes?

-I'm happy to report that I've had zero dairy and zero sugar and I've been able to keep my fruit intake quite low (one serving/day). I haven't had stevia, either. Pretty soon, my sweet tooth will be falling out of my head;)

-I've been eating a lot more greens- especially kale, which I can't get enough of. It's so good sauteed with some garlic granules and a dash of coconut aminos (which is a good soy sauce substitute- a little less strong in flavor with a hint of sweetness and more versatile).

-Avocado and coconut milk have been my best friends. I like eating sliced avocado with salt and pepper as a side to almost any meal and I've had coconut milk on berries, in tea, and by itself (can you tell I really like it?) I use the Whole Foods 365 Organic brand and I have to say it's very good.

-I've also made friends with creatures of the sea, specifically small creatures such as oysters, herring and sardines. I really like any smoked fish in olive oil. It could be goldfish and I'd eat it. It's also quite convenient to open a can and dump it on a salad for a fast meal.

-I've eaten more eggs than I intended to, but less than I previously was.

-As for nuts, which I also intended to cut back on, some days I'm good and some days I'm not. I'm trying to add a little variety (I usually eat pecans, almond butter and walnuts) so I bought some brazil nuts. A little extra selenium can only do good things for my TPO antibodies.

-Caffeine: I haven't been drinking my usual black teas in the morning; I've been having green or herbal tea. Some mornings I just have a green drink instead: some Midori Greens with some fresh lemon juice in water.
As for coffee, I only had it once this week. Not too bad! I also had a cup of cocoa consisting of dark cocoa powder, water, coconut milk, cinnamon and a pinch of sea salt. Not sweet, but pretty good, actually. I may stick to that method of cocoa preparation in the future, since I like chocolate even if it's not sweet.
PS- chocolate is not a trigger food for me like it is for some. I can have a little and be happy.

Here is an example of what I ate in a day:
Breakfast: 3 scrambled eggs with leeks and a side of sliced avocado (1/3 avocado) and some sliced cherry tomatoes (I'm not avoiding nightshades) and a cup of chrysanthemum green tea with orange peel.
Lunch: big salad with 1/2 can smoked herring, few spoonfuls of kimchi and dressing of olive oil and a dash of balsamic vinegar and few brazil nuts.
Dinner: bison burger topped with mushrooms and onions and side of sauteed kale (3/4 cup).
Snack/dessert: 1/4 cup thawed raspberries topped with 1/4 cup coconut milk and sprinked with sea salt.

I still need to make bone broth- that will be my weekend project.

As for the non food-related aspects of my program:

-Exercise: I've been walking almost every day. Since I had a number of days with low energy, I didn't push myself to work out, but yesterday, I intermittent fasted (I do condensed window eating) and did a fasted workout with a few sets of two-armed kettlebell swings (with a 25 lb bell), some regular and side planks, the "Cat Vomit" (from The 4 Hour Body) bicep curls (with my 10 lb bell) and pushups.

-Sleep: I've been getting to bed a little earlier (around 11/11:30) but I still want to get to bed around 10.

Over all, I feel lighter, my energy is starting to improve a little, my face is less puffy when I wake up. I've been assured by others who have done Whole30 that your energy usually increases after the second week. I'll be patient!



  1. You are doing way better than I would as I think chocolate is totally a trigger for me and I just keep going back till it's gone.
    I through it all out today, bye bye Christmas past.
    Cannot wait to hear how this week went.

  2. Today is day 7 for me and so far I can say it's been a lot easier than I thought it would. I feel like I'm eating a ton, but still have those mental moments of hunger. Two questions for you, have you had any dull head aches or body aches and are you sleeping okay? I'm suffering from both and I'm hoping they get better. My workout schedule is somewhat intense, so I'm wondering if my body might be trying to tell me something! Keep the updates coming, I was glad to find you!

  3. Hi Sandy!
    I also had a lot of mental hunger that first week or so, but it finally went away.
    It sounds like you're just having some detox symptoms- the headaches/body aches/sleep stuff should get better. I've done some hardcore detoxes in the past, so I'm pretty familiar with what detoxing feels like. I did have some headaches and feelings of sluggishness and a lot of evening fatigue but most of that has subsided, so hang in there:)

    As for the workout thing- it would be good to back off the intensity while your body is cleansing and healing. You could do more walking, swimming and yoga instead of intense workouts- all of these support the body during cleansing and they help move the lymph fluid.

    Many people workout more than they really need to. Doing intense, short weight-based routines a few x/week instead of cardio, along with daily walking will usually get you the same results as working out every day.
    You need a day between intense workouts for the muscles to repair and grow and too much working out will make you pump out cortisol, which can tear down muscle and actually increase fat storage, ironically!
    I like to do weights and kettlebells along with some isometric stuff like Core Fusion for my heavier workouts. Working out in a fasted state- like before breakfast or during an intermittent fast, is a very efficient way to burn more fat and build more muscle.

    Hang in there, Sandy! Feel free to ask more questions, if you like!