Summary and Observations of following the Whole 30 Program
I am excited about having completed the Whole 30 program on my first try, with near 100% compliance! I am especially proud that I was able to achieve 100% in key areas, total cuts of Alcohol, Sugar, Artificial Sweetener, Grain, Dairy, Legumes.
Week by Week Summary
If you have not had a chance, please take a look at my previous blog posts where I discuss preparation for the Whole 30, and then break down each week to include meals, tips, challenges, and benefits noticed.
Before and After Comparisons
I did take some physical measurements before and after the program, just to see any progress or improvements.
- Before: 209.6 pounds
- After: 201.4
(Both photos and weights taken on a Friday, after a morning run, so I’m not inflating stats)
- Before: 205 pounds for a set of 5 (best set of the workout)
- After: 255 pounds for 3 sets of 2 reps (best 3 sets of the workout)
Best Pullup Set
- Before: 4 sets of 4 reps
- After: 4 sets of 5 reps
- Before: 4.5 mile run, about 3 walk breaks, about an hour total time
- After: 4.9 mile run, no breaks, around 53 minutes total
A note about comparisons: I did not do the Whole 30 to lose weight, or improve my exercise numbers, these were side benefits. I do feel that benefits such as better sleep, more energy, and improved digestion contributed to my exercise improvements.
Program Benefits I Noticed
- Energy and mental focus were greatly improved, I was able to dedicate a lot of time to the blog and posted much more frequently during the program. I also focused on personal development, educational podcasts, and reading.
- Exercise markers improved, as noted above.
- Sleep improved, many nights of 8 hours uninterrupted.
- Digestion felt much improved as I moved through the program.
- Elimination of sugar, grain, and alcohol made it much easier to avoid poor food choices.
- Did not have “a case of the Mondays” due to benefits noted above/from not over indulging on weekends.
- I got creative with food choices, combinations, meal prep, even a little cooking!
- I learned how to make a Coleslaw!
- Got great ideas for new themes and blog posts.
- I was able to eat with out counting calories, or macro nutrient ratios, and feel good/have success.
- Successfully completed a whole 30 beach vacation!
My Top Tips
- Be involved with your food and meal prep!
- Do preparation and planning before you start, do not just jump right in to a whole 30 with both feet, and no plan.
- While doing your preparation, try to phase out non-approved food or drink you really enjoy, and find a substitution (example, cauliflower rice instead of rice).
- Identify foods or food groups you have a hard time controlling portions of, even if they are healthy. I was overeating mixed nuts, so I needed to re-designate them as a treat rather than a dietary staple.
- Remove any non-approved foods from your home before you start…why be tempted when you are making a lifestyle change?
- Create a compelling reason (or reasons) you want to try this program. If you are just looking for a quick fix to lose weight, that reason is not going to give you the stamina you need to make the lifestyle changes of the program…and even if you make 30 days, what happens after?
- Stay hydrated, make sure you have clean water (do not rely on tap water).
My Compliance Grade
I give myself a solid 98% compliance for the entire program, which is pretty awesome for 30 days! Please take a look at the back links to the individual weeks if you want to see where I had 100%, and where some non-compliant food made it in.
Lifestyle Changes To Keep
- Mixed nuts are in the treat category.
- Legumes will not be a daily or weekly staple.
- Dairy will be in the treat category.
- Artificial sweeteners will be rarely consumed.
- Intermittent fasting will stay as part of my routine.
- Committing to another 30 days of no sugar, grain, alcohol.
Glad you asked! I am going to continue my streak of no sugar, grain, or alcohol, and start an anti-inflammatory diet for another 30 days. I will have a blog post coming up about guidelines I will be making for myself related to the anti-inflammatory theme. Thanks for following along with me, until next time!