My Whole 30 Experience

Photo by Foodie Factor on Pexels.com

Summary and Observations of following the Whole 30 Program

Success!

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.

Preparation

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Before and After Comparisons

I did take some physical measurements before and after the program, just to see any progress or improvements.

Photos

Before
After

Weight

  • 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)

Best Deadlift

  • 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

Best Run

  • 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).

Favorite Meals

Power Salads
Whole 30 Omelets
Coleslaw
Egg Dishes
Chipotle Beef Soups

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.

Whats Next?

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!

My Whole 30 Experience-Week 4

A Fresh Side Salad with Local Veggies!

Benefits Noted This Week

I feel a little bit leaner and lighter this week, compared to when I started the Whole 30. I am going to be interested to note any changes I see on the scale and in the mirror at the end of the program. I’m especially interested because I have not been counting calories or macro-nutrient ratios, really just trying to listen to my body and eat when I need to/how much I need to.

Another benefit I have been noticing this week is continued mental clarity and sharpness. I have been using this additional mental space and focus to zone in on areas of personal development, such as my health and our household finances.

Whole 30 vacation benefit noted was I stay much better hydrated on a booze free vacation, my go to ⛱ drink was ice water with lemon 🍋, yum!

Challenges This Week

Going on a 2 day vacation was a challenge and a test; it asked the question, am I really serious about doing a Whole 30? I knew this beach trip was coming, and consciously made the decision not to change my Whole 30 timeline to adjust for the trip. Why? I have done things like that in the past, and I found through experience that if you are serious about making a lifestyle change, you need to fully commit.

“Its the holidays, its vacation, its my birthday, I’ll start next week”…at some point you need to drop these excuses, decide whether or not you are serious about something and commit. I am committed, but I still recognize this as a challenge and shift in my previous way of thinking.

Tip of the Week

Be involved in your food prep! Make sure that you do have some aspect of responsibility for preparing your meals, and picking the ingredients. Even if you are not the primary cook in your house, I promise you will have more success on Whole 30 or any program if you help shop for ingredients, and prep the food you will eat. I have found myself more engaged in the process the more I helped chose ingredients, prep food, and think of ideas for meals myself.

Lets Talk About It [Video]

Meals

Sunday

Morning, coffee, water, green tea with herbs.

Around 11 am: Coffee with MTC oil, 2 spoons of nut butter.

Around 2:30 pm: Bowl of Creamy Taco soup with green powder, avocado mayo, pumpkin seeds added.

Evening: Herbal tea.

Monday

Morning, coffee, water, green tea.

Around 11 am: Spicy Coleslaw, topped with avocado and hot sauce. This week, Spicy Coleslaw has: Broccoli slaw mix, scallions, garlic, local hot pepper, bacon; dressing with avocado mayo, apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, sriracha sauce, salt and pepper.

*Of note: Sriracha lists sugar as an ingredient, but there is not enough to register any added sugar, or calories in a serving. Questionable perhaps, but I am allowing for myself.

Around 4:30 pm: Bowl of Chipotle Beef and Cauliflower soup, 3 handfuls of almonds, seaweed snack

Tuesday

Morning, coffee, water, green tea.

Around 12 noon: Salad with lettuce, greens powder, tomato, garlic, basil, avocado, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper, spice coleslaw on the bottom of the bowl; sea weed snack.

Around 4:30 pm: Bowl of Chipotle Beef and Cauliflower soup, 2 handfuls of pumpkin seeds, 2 spoons nut butter, seaweed snack.

Wednesday

Morning, coffee, water, green tea.

Around 12 noon: Salad with Lettuce, Tomato, Garlic, Basil, Avocado, Pickles, base of Spicy Coleslaw, Greens powder, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; 1 can smoked Herring, seaweed snack.

Around 4:30 pm: Bowl of Chipotle Beef and Cauliflower soup; 2 beef sticks; seaweed snack.

Thursday

Morning, coffee, water, green tea.

Around 10 am-Second cup of coffee (seeing if I can extend my fasting).

Around 3 pm: Salad with lettuce, tomato, garlic, basil, greens powder, pickles, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper, based of spicy coleslaw, topped with sardines; seaweed snack, 3 spoons of nut butter, 2 beef sticks.

Evening: Herbal tea.

Friday

Morning: Coffee, water.

Around 11 am: Green tea with a spoon of coconut oil.

Around 4:30 pm: Salad with lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, green powder, garlic, basil, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; bowl of Chipotle Beef and Cauliflower soup.

Saturday

Morning: Coffee, water, Iced coffee with MTC oil.

Around 12 noon: Salad with lettuce, tomatoes, carrots 🥕, lobster, shrimp, chicken, bacon, dressed with oil and vinegar; piece of roasted salmon.

Around 5 pm: Turkey pepperoni, Air dried Kale chips, coconut 🥥 milk.

Sunday

Morning, green tea, ice coffee, water.

Around 11 am: Lobster Eggs Benedict. This is slightly out of compliance with the butter in hollandaise sauce, but overall a great treat!

Around 1 pm: Crunchy broccoli 🥦 snack, 2 meat sticks.

Around 4 pm: Iced Coconut 🥥 milk.

Around 6 pm: Lobster 🦞 no roll, coleslaw, beef liver and onions.

Favorite Meal of The Week

Lobster 🦞 Eggs Benedict

Even though this dish was slightly out of compliance because of the butter in the hollondaise sauce, it tasted good and was a great way to get in more lobster options on vacation! I took the dish off the English muffins to avoid grain, and ended up skipping the potatoes as well.

Exercise

Sunday

Bobby Maximus “Death by Pushups” workout. Made it to minute 8 on protocol, finished with reps I could for remaining minutes.

Monday

Morning stretch and roll, around 50 minutes walk, 2.5 miles total.

Tuesday

Deadlifts: Work Sets- 205×5, 225×4, 255×2,1,1, 205×5

Ab roll wheel, 6 sets of 6-8 reps; pull up bat hangs

Of note, deadlifts did not progress like last week. My only thought as to why is that my chest and lats felt fatigued and sore, likely holding over from my pushup workout Sunday. Deadlifts are truly a full body exercise, you need all muscle groups working together!

Wednesday

Total Gym Row and Curl combo: 4 sets of 10 each; Double Kettlebell push press: 35 lbs- 4 sets of 10; Pull ups- 4 sets of 5; Push ups- 3 sets of

Thursday

Morning stretch and foam roll; run, same route as last week, 4.9 miles, 53 minutes. If you read my week 3 post, I felt like a slowed down a bit last week, felt fatigued, and needed to take a walk break after the hill towards the end of this running route. Today, I made it up the hill, no walk break needed (no walk breaks during my run) and finished 2 minutes faster! I did feel the general fatigue setting in as I approached the hill, but not muscle fatigue in my legs like I experienced last week. I relaxed my shoulders, slowed my pace slightly, and focused on my breathing as I climbed the hill. I did the same mental inventory as week 3 about reasons I may have felt better this week; the only difference was this week, I got a full, uninterrupted 7 hours of sleep last night. Sleep for the win!

Friday

Mowing the lawn, around 2.5 miles, about an hour total time; walking 9 holes of Golf!

Saturday

Sun and sand, active rest!

Sunday

A morning run with scenic views and salty breeze, more sun and sand!

Whole 30 Vacation Highlights!

We had a mini family vacation to Cape Cod Saturday to Monday, overlapping the end of my whole 30. The whole 30 vacation was fantastic! I set myself up by bringing some of my own food and drinks, and planning what I could order. Really, it was all about the experience, as vacation should be! Wonderful location, and beach time on Cape Cod. View from the room below…

My Compliance Grade this week

I give myself a solid 97%, because the use of Sriracha is questionable based on containing a small amount of sugar (see above, not enough to register on nutrition facts). Additionally, my salad on vacation had some likely non compliant bacon, and the hollandaise sauce had some butter. Overall, I feel great about compliance to the program, especially working in a mini beach vacation!

Finishing Strong-Final Week ahead

I stretched out my week 4 post so I can capture my meals and compliance while on vacation. My final wrap up post will be more reflective and a summary of the overall experience, rather than the day by day meals breakdown. I plan to include before and after stats and photos, summary of tips, favorite meals, and my next challenge you can follow along with. Cheers to the final week!

The Top 7 Tips for a Healthy Vacation

How to enjoy your vacations to the fullest, and come back healthier, well rested, and more fit!

Why We Love Vacation

Why do we all look forward to vacation? So many reasons! A few examples for you:

  1. Going to places we love
  2. Spending time with the people we love
  3. Time away from work
  4. A chance to be spontaneous and not have a schedule
  5. Delicious food (and drink)
  6. Making memories
  7. Do some activities that fulfill us, that we don’t have time for/can’t do at home

I picked 7 common reasons we look forward to vacation, what are some of yours?

As much as we love vacations, a common pitfall of them can be coming back from vacation feeling tired, sluggish, and maybe with a few extra pounds we did not intend to gain.

Why Do We Feel Sluggish and Unhealthy After Vacation?

Top 3 Reasons People come back unhealthy and sluggish after a vacation:

  1. Overeating and Drinking: You typically have a routine when you are at home and going to work, however on vacation this can shift dramatically. One of the great features we look forward to on vacation is great food and drink, and often we don’t have a plan or set a limit.
  2. Lack of Exercise: Unless your vacation is centered around physical activity (Hiking, Rock Climbing, Skiing), most likely you do not have high levels of physical activity. Even people who exercise regularly while they are at home will let this slip while on vacation.
  3. Lack of Sleep: A lot of us will tend to neglect sleep while on vacation, because there are so many fun things to do, especially late at night! Lack of sleep, or even a change in your sleep routine, can compound the impacts of other lifestyle factors above.

Let’s Talk About these Big 3 [Video]

Top 7 Tips for Success

  1. Make a Plan: It seems basic, but you need a plan for your vacation! Areas to consider making your plan: Where are you going? How are you traveling? How long is your vacation? What is your budget? What kind of experiences will you have? Why this vacation, what do you love about it? If you are a naturally spontaneous person, I understand this may stress you out. Never fear, you can plan unscheduled time in your vacation!
  2. Do Not Go Out to Eat for Every Meal: A lot of us love going out to eat as part of vacation, and this can lead to frequent over eating and contribution to that sluggish feeling. Portions when you go out to eat are usually on the larger side; even if you don’t eat all of it in one sitting, most likely you are hitting those left overs later. To plan, think about what food or restaurants are unique to your vacation, what can you get on this vacation that you can’t get at home? What is your favorite meal to go out for? If it is Breakfast, find some great Breakfast places around your vacation site. If you go out for one meal per day, and do some grocery shopping for other meals, your waistline (and your budget) will thank you after the vacation. Don’t go out to eat just for the sake of going out to eat or because you are on vacation.
  3. Plan Your Exercise: If you are going on a vacation that involves physical activity every day (hiking, rock climbing, skiing as examples) you can skip this step. However, for vacations that do not involve physical activity, you need to make a plan. If you are going on a 6 day vacation, decide in advance how many days you will exercise, and hold yourself accountable. Also, plan around the type of facilities and equipment you will have available. No gym at the hotel? Plan for body weight exercise, walking, jogging!
  4. Train for Vacation: What I mean by this, is spend 3-4 weeks exercising the way you will on vacation. For example, if you have no gym and plan to run and do body weight training, spend 3-4 weeks exercising this way BEFORE you go on vacation. Why? If you have not been running for months, and go for a 5 miler day one of vacation, your legs will be shot the next day, and you are much less likely to be successful on your exercise program for your 6 day vacation. Same idea if you have not been doing push ups, and run yourself through an intense body weight circuit day one of vacation. Train and prepare so you have a routine you can be successful with on vacation.
  5. Prioritize Your Sleep: Make sure you get enough sleep on vacation. Do not stay up late watching TV, go out every night etc, just because you are on vacation and you can. If nightlife and shows are part of the experience of your vacation, great! Just make sure you make up the sleep during the day, do not burn the candle at both ends. If you have a usual bedtime or routine around sleep, stick as close to that as possible while on vacation, and if anything, get more sleep. Parents, make sure your kids stick to their routine as well.
  6. Limit the Booze: If you don’t drink alcohol, you can skip this section. Drinking lots of alcohol adds extra calories, and compounds the issue of overeating. Excess alcohol will also mess with your sleep, and if your are hungover you are less motivated to work out…ask me how I know all this 😉 The tip here is to make sure that IF you have alcohol on vacation, that it enhances your experience and is unique to your vacation. Examples: going to a local Winery, Brewery, Distillery; enjoying a tropical umbrella drink; enjoying a drinking with friends and family. If you roll in to the local liquor store when you arrive onsite and stock up on cheap beer, wine, whiskey that you can just as easily get while you are at home…ask yourself if this is really enhancing your vacation experience? Same advice as with going out to eat, do not drink on vacation just for the sake of drinking.
  7. Make It All About the Experience! The theme in all of these areas is to really focus on your experience on vacation. Make sure the vacation is something you and your family love and will cherish, and that everything else enhances the theme of your experience! If you are going out to eat and having a treat, make sure it is truly special and enhances your vacation! If you find yourself going out for cheap pizza or fried food you could get at home just because you are on vacation and deserve it, ask why? If you stay up late, make sure it is for a show, late night walk on the beach, and not just flipping through TV channels like you could do at home.

Let’s Talk Tips [Videos]

If you like the video discussion format, follow along with me. I had a lot of fun shooting these videos, on scene at Cap Cod, MA.

Tips for Exercise on Vacation
Eat Healthy, and Enjoy Your Favorite Foods
Alcohol as part of your vacation experience-not post vacation hangover
The importance of sleep, and making sure you do not neglect it on vacation

Have a Healthy Vacation!

You can come back from vacation feeling fit, healthy, and well rested if you follow these tips above! Give them a try, and let me know what you think. So far, I have tried them out on a 3 day weekend vacation with great success, and look forward to the next time I am able to have a longer vacation to come back healthy, fit and well rested! Until next time, go find your beach!

My Whole 30 Experience- Week 3!

Whole 30 Omelet!

Benefits Noticed

This week, I started to notice that I no longer have “a case of the Monday’s”. I thought about why this may be, and I think it’s a relationship between diet and my mindset, rather than any environmental changes. To explain, ever find yourself in a loop where you can’t wait to get to the weekend, and Monday morning is dreaded? Did part of what you looked forward to on the weekend involve food, or drinks? Me too.

Regardless of reasons why you (or I) couldn’t wait for the weekend, “treats” were linked to it. Can’t wait for the weekend because I’ve been good all week and I “deserve” a treat. Well, this became an interconnected loop without me realizing it. I believe that indulgence in alcohol, sugar, processed food/ fried food in a condensed period like a weekend was impacting my sleep, and my energy levels.

Now that I’m focusing on the Whole 30 and am motivated by these food choices, quality sleep, and exercise, I look forward to the weekends for different reasons. The weekend allows a chance for food prep and planning, more quality sleep, bonus exercise, and more family fun. Since I have been feeling so much better during the program, I now look forward to waking up Monday and accepting the challenges and blessings of a new week.

Challenges this week

No major challenges noted this week. I really wanted a cold Bai drink (with artificial sweetener) after my round of golf Friday, but I was able to choose a seltzer. I made some iced green tea as well, to satisfy the want for a nice iced drink on a hot day.

Tip of the Week

My tip of the week is to inventory any foods that you may tend to overeat, even if they are healthy foods. I’m realizing that mixed nuts are in this category for me, so I’m reclassifying them as a treat, rather than a daily staple.

Let’s talk about it

Video summary of the blog post and week 3.

Meals

Sunday

Morning: Coffee, water, seltzer

Around 12 noon: omelet with tomatoes,avocado,sides, green powder, smoked salmon

Around 5 pm: Bowl of spicy Coleslaw with cabbage, carrot, onion, pickle, garlic, dressing with avocado mayo, apple cider vinegar, chili powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper; 3 handfuls of mixed nuts, 2 spoons nut butter.

Monday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

Around 12 noon: Salad with Spicy Coleslaw (see Sunday), lettuce, tomato, olives, avocado, pickles, sardines, greens powder, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; 2 spoons of nut butter; seaweed snack

Around 5 pm: 4 pickles, 3 beef sticks, 3 handfuls of almonds, 2 spoons nut butter

Tuesday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

Around 10:30 am: Rebel Keto drink (compliant with Whole 30); cup of coffee

Around 3 pm: Salad with Spicy Coleslaw (see Sunday), lettuce, tomato, olives, Smoked Herring, greens powder, pumpkin seeds dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; 2 spoons of nut butter; a handful of almonds, 2 beef sticks

Wednesday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

24 hour fast, due to annual check up

Around 5 pm: Creamy Taco soup with mixed peppers, onion, garlic, ground beef, fresh cilantro, beef bone broth, coconut milk, spices, topped with avocado; salad with lettuce, picked, greens powder, olives, green powder, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; 2 spoons nut butter, 2 handfuls of almonds

Thursday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

Around 1:30 pm: Bowl of Creamy Taco Soup with a spoon of avocado mayo; 4 pickles; 3 handfuls of almonds; 2 spoons nut butter

Friday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

Around 2 PM: Bowl of Creamy Taco soup with an avocado; bowl of sauerkraut with green powder, 2 handfuls of almonds, seaweed snacks

Around 6 PM: Herbal tea.

Saturday

Morning: Coffee, water, green tea

Around 1 pm: Salad with Cucumbers, olives, tomatoes, garlic, greens powder, dressed with Oliver Oil, Salt and Pepper; 4 strips of bacon, 1 handful of almonds, 1 handful of pumpkin seeds

Later meal TBA

Favorite Meal of the Week

Favorite meal of the week was this salad pictured below, ordered out at lunch. It was my favorite because I was able to make some slight adjustments while ordering and make it Whole 30 compliant, you can still go out on the Whole 30!

Exercise

Sunday

Lawn mowing: 2.5 miles, about an hour total

Monday

Morning stretch and roll, about 50 minutes of walking

Tuesday

Morning stretch and roll

Deadlifts: Work sets- 205×5, 225×5, 255×2,2,2,1, 205×5; Ab roll wheel, 6 sets of 6-8 reps, hangs from pull up bar

Wednesday

Morning stretch and roll

Total Gym row and curl combo, 4 sets of 10; Double Kettlebell push press- 35 lbs, 10,10,9,10; Pull up- 4,5,5,5; Push up- 10,10,9,12

Thursday

Morning stretch and roll, about 50 minutes of walking

Friday

Morning stretch and roll, 4.9 mile run, around 55 minutes total. Interestingly, I ran the exact same route as last week, with slightly different results. I had to take a walk break at the top of the hill at the end of my run, and I did not last week. All of my exercise numbers have been improving throughout the Whole 30, until this morning. Noting this change, which is not an improvement, I had to ask some questions as to why:

  • Am I dehydrated? No, same fluids routine as previous weeks.
  • Did I sleep well? Not 8 hours straight, I woke up once in the middle of the night.
  • Am I over training? I do not believe so, but I did add some volume to deadlifts this week.
  • Did I eat a junky meal or go out drinking the night before? NO!
  • Was the humidity different? Maybe, I did not check.

Reflecting through this as I write, overall there was not much difference in the overall run as compared to last week, it was really just the hill kicking my butt. However, the exercise of journaling this out was very helpful, because there have been times where eating junk or drinking the night before has impacted my energy or my workout.

My other “exercise”, 9 holes of golf, walking! I have not played actual golf since 2016, before my son was born. My shot of the day was hitting the green on a 225 yard par 3, made par! Please note, made par indicates my score for one hole, not the round…😄

Saturday

Mowed the lawn, about 2.5 miles total, about an hour time; weed whacking/edge trimming, around 30 minutes total time

My compliance grade

100%! Still not feeling any major temptations, cravings, etc. Feeling very confident about week 4!

Looking ahead to Next Week

Next week, we are having a family Beach weekend at Cape Cod! We found a nice condo where it is easy to socially distance. I am going to do some planning for myself to make sure I bring some compliant food with me, and know what kind of food I can order out while still being on my plan. This is going to be a great test and affirmation, a healthy vacation!

My Whole 30 Experience- Week 2

Photo by Marta Branco on Pexels.com

Week 2 is in the Books!

Benefits noticed

This week started with a major benefit Sunday morning (and Friday morning), 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep! I have been trying to focus on sleep lately, and this was the first night in a long time of 8 hours uninterrupted. Our son is currently not a factor of sleep interruption, but I found myself waking up at least once per night for a long time. Sleep is low hanging fruit when it comes to health benefits, so I certainly plan to keep an eye on this one during the program.

Another benefit is my energy was easily 2x what I felt last week. This could be a combination of detoxing from no grain/sugar/alcohol for a longer period of time, improved sleep, better nutrition, or combination of the above/other factors. My run Friday morning felt so much better and I did not take a walk break, even chugging the gradual incline at the end! I did not hammer the intensity of my weight lifting, but lifts seemed to go up easier and I added volume.

Tip of the Week

My tip for the week is be mindful of how benefits are interrelated and can build off of each other. My example is my diet is cleaner, my sleep is improving, and I’m having more energy. More energy leads to better quality exercise, more productivity at work, more focus on family fun. Thinking in reverse, if you neglect your sleep, your energy will be lower, less quality exercise, and you’ll be more likely to crave junk and start snacking… food for thought.

Let’s Talk About It [Video]

Challenges this week

I did not experience any environmental challenges or food cravings this week, and I learned very well from slight challenges in food prep last week. As I continue the whole 30, I am looking forward to challenges of things like beach days, where typically some non-compliant food and drink is part of the experience. For now, I will continue to embrace the compliance and success!

Meals

Roasted Salmon Topped with Avocado and Cherry Tomato

Sunday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

Around 11 am: Bowl of Coleslaw with cabbage, carrot, onion, garlic, bacon, dressing with avocado mayo, apple cider vinegar, mustard powder, salt and pepper; a bowl of sauerkraut with green powder and pumpkin seed; a few handfuls of mixed nuts

Around 5 pm: Roasted salmon with avocado and cherry tomato, side of Brussels sprouts with bacon.

Monday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

Around 12 noon: Coleslaw (leftover) with cherry tomatoes and a fried egg, sauerkraut with green powder and pumpkin seeds, sea weed snack, 2 spoons nut butter.

Around 4:30 pm: 1 can smoked Herring (around 3 oz.), seaweed snack

Tuesday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

Around 11 am: Meal size salad with lettuce, cherry tomato, olives, pickles, sardines, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper; bowl of soup with onion, pepper, cauliflower rice, carrot, celery, diced tomato cilantro, in chicken bone broth.

Around 4:30 pm: 3 Handfuls of mixed nuts, 1 handful of Almonds.

Wednesday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

Around 12 noon: Meal size salad with lettuce, cherry tomato, onions olives, pickles, smoked herring, dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper.

Around 4:30 pm: bowl of soup with onion, pepper, cauliflower rice, carrot, celery, diced tomato cilantro, in chicken bone broth; seaweed snack

Thursday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

Around 12:30 pm: bowl of soup with onion, pepper, cauliflower rice, carrot, celery, diced tomato cilantro, in chicken bone broth; 3 handfuls of Almonds, 2 spoons of nut butter.

Canned salmon with olive oil, salt and pepper, chopped garlic; seaweed snack, 2 grass fed beef sticks

Friday

Morning: Coffee, Water, Green Tea

(Spontaneous 24 hour fast)

Around 5 PM: 2 egg omelet with onion, tomatoes, avocado, sides of cherry tomatoes (marinated with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper), olives, avocado, 3 handfuls of mixed nuts.

Saturday

Morning: Coffee, water, seltzer

Around 12 noon: Salad with steak, tomato, avocado, lettuce, hard boiled egg.

Around 5 PM: Dinner TBA.

Favorite Meal of Week 2

Coleslaw! Featuring green cabbage, carrot, scallions, garlic, red onion, bacon, and dressing made with avocado mayo, apple cider vinegar, mustard powder, salt and pepper. 100% compliant and delicious!

Overall I incorporated some different foods, meals, and food combinations this week. I have noticed that I tend to go to nuts frequently as an add on; I am not sure if this is good or bad, but for me nuts are easy to overeat. As an experiment during this process, I am not going to purchase any more nuts once I run out of the stock in my pantry…I estimate I will have at least a week or 2 on my Whole 30 to report about with no nut consumption.

Exercise

Sunday

Bobby Maximus “death by pushups”, I made it to minute 8 before flaming out, but finished the 20 minutes doing the reps I could at the top of each minute.

Monday

Morning stretch and foam roll, around a 50 minute walk.

Tuesday

Morning stretch and roll

Deadlifts: Work sets- 205×5, 225 x 5,5,4,4,2; ab wheel roller, 6 sets of 6-8 reps; hangs off pull up bar

Wednesday

Morning stretch and roll

Kettlebell pushpress: 35 lbs-10, 10, 8…53 lbs- 3, 3; Total Gym row and curl combo: 5 sets of 10 each; Push ups: 10,10,10, 9; Pull ups: 3,4,4,4

Thursday

Morning stretch and foam roll, around a 50 minute walk.

Friday

Morning stretch and roll, 4.9 mile run (around the same route as last week), no break stops or walks! 55 minutes total. Of note, felt much better this week, nice steady pace.

Saturday

The sun and sand 🙂 Active rest.

Compliance Grade

Drum roll please…I give myself 100% Whole 30 compliance for week 2! I built off the positive momentum from week 1, and made sure I had compliant bacon for any foods that was incorporated in to. I have heard there is a “10 day blues” for Whole 30, I personally have not experienced any of that, and my resolve is strong for 100% compliance for each of the remaining weeks (taking 1 week at a time).

Looking Ahead to Next Week

Next week, I’m excited to continue the positive momentum and look for new benefits. I’m taking a day off of work and planning to play golf for the first time since my son was born. I welcome the shift of having these type of experiences without linking them to unhealthy “treats” or alcohol, which will be a theme as I close out the Whole 30 on Cape Cod the first weekend in August. See you next week!