The End of the Whole 30

So today should be my Whole 3 Week 3 recap of how I successfully made it into the best part of the Whole 30 and felt FANTASTIC and like I could do this forever.

Except I didn’t.

I purposefully started my whole 30 when I new I would be home for two weeks and could get the hang of cooking/eating clean.  I travel about 7-8 days a month for work in two 3-4 day stints.  I knew that this month these travel times would be in back to back weeks and that it was going to be TOUGH to travel and eat the Whole 30.  So I planned it so that I would be moving into the ‘feel good’ time of tons of energy and loving the way I feel to be while I was travelling… I figured that would give me the best leg up on actually completing this thing.

I had it all planned out how I would navigate it, and did a lot of online research on how to travel and eat clean.  I packed a cooler full of food, planned trips to the grocery store and figured out where I would be able to cook.  But here’s the thing about the Whole 30… it takes TIME. Time to shop for food, prep the dinners and lunches and time to wake up and scramble eggs for breakfast.  During one of my travel weeks it is a super high stress time at work.  I work for a construction company and that is the one week every month that we bid on work.  We have a lot of work that has to be done in a short amount of time.  It just so happened that this month we had some extremely large projects and it was going to be even longer days and more stressful.  My coworkers (one of which is my mom) were super supportive of my attempt to pull this off and even went to salad bars two days in a row to accommodate me. But by dinner time of our 3rd 16 hour+ day I had a meltdown and gave in to ordering pizza.

I’d love to say that I had tons of energy and loved the Whole 30, but I didn’t.  IT WAS HARD.

There are things that I LOVED about it:

  • I didn’t feel gross/bloated after eating
  • I lost 10 lbs
  • most of the food is actually pretty delicious
  • I loved having a meal plan and grocery shopping at the beginning of each week.

When I did give into non-whole 30 compliant foods I did it because I was having a hard time focusing on work and functioning for 16 hour days on just the Whole 30 foods I had prepared for the day.  I know that this is mostly because I didn’t adequately plan for such long days, but I’m not sure on my driving schedule/travel schedule it would be very possible without Herculean self control (which lets be honest… I CLEARLY don’t have).  I also looked at my schedule for the next few weeks and realized that I had several activities and another 3 days of travel that I didn’t want to have to focus on clean eating during.  So I decided to quit.  Although really I don’t think of it as quitting because I made it about 15 days longer than I thought I would.

I’m definitely going to be incorporating some of the things I learned into my everyday eating habits, but the Paleo life just isn’t for me.  However I definitely have a HUGE new found respect for the people who keep it up day after day.

Week Two Whole 30

I started a Whole 30 two weeks ago and thought I’d blog about my experience.  If you missed it, you can find last week’s recap here.


Day 8 (Tuesday) This whole process is starting to be more routine (although I still haven’t mastered making breakfast and getting to work on time).  I did my first run for the half marathon training, I was supposed to do 3, but only got in 2.5 because it was still 100+ degrees when I ran.  I ate leftover spaghetti with spaghetti squash for both lunch and dinner, but since it was delicious I didn’t mind.  Before this whole process I wasn’t much of a leftovers fan, but since it keeps me from having to cook a full meal EVERY SINGLE NIGHT, I’m becoming a bigger fan. My husband and I are still working on finishing up the renovation project at church, so that is occupying my time.  I still haven’t gotten to the boundless energy levels that they keep talking about with the whole 30, but I am not exhausted either.

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs

Lunch: Leftover Spaghetti on Spaghetti Squash ‘noodles’

Dinner: Leftover Spaghetti on Spaghetti Squash ‘noodles’


Day 9 (Wednesday) I tweaked my back working on the stage Sunday, but working on the stage last night again just made it angrier.  I went to the Dr. to make sure I didn’t pinch a nerve or do something worse to it, but he says it is just muscular.  I was adamant that I can’t take muscle relaxers because they knock me out, but he thought a very low dose of the weakest medicine would do the trick… he was wrong.  It knocks me out AND isn’t strong enough to make my back pain cease.  Oh well… lesson learned. Because of that, my workout routine has been put on hold a bit. I’m hoping the pain will go away by Saturday so I can get my first long run in for the half marathon training.  Foodwise it was a pretty good day. I made guacamole from scratch and taco seasoning from scratch.  I found a recipe for a bunch of spices to mix for taco seasoning, but I didn’t have red pepper flakes, so I just substituted cayenne for the whole half teaspoon of it. That might have been a mistake! The taco meat was SPICY (but still delicious).  We just had a bed of romaine lettuce, taco seasoned ground beef, with guacamole on top.  YUMMM.

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs and Bacon

Lunch: Grilled Chicken on spinach salad with avocado.

Dinner: Paleo Taco Salad


Day 10 (Thursday)

Today was a rough day; I kind of knew it would be because of what I have scheduled.  Tonight I went to a Pie Night at my brother’s house.  Our worship service at church has been hosting these at my brother’s house (he’s the preacher) several nights this week to help people get to know each other and feel more connected.  If you see day 3 on last week’s post, I (I use that term loosely) had previously made four pies to serve for them. And the Whole 30 timeline says days 10 and 11 are usually the worst because you’ve done this long enough to be tired of it, but haven’t seen the results of your hard work yet.  For me at least, I’m already seeing the results: I’ve lost 8 lbs (you aren’t supposed to weigh yourself… shhhh), and I am feeling less sluggish.  However I get the emotion that you feel like you have done so well, but you are ONLY 1/3 of the way through.  That last two thirds seems kinda like forever.  But still I would have given my right arm to be able to eat a huge slice of pie last night with my brother’s homemade whipped cream.  And in the spirit of full honesty, I gave in and had a bite of pie.  It was less than quarter sized and I stopped after that, but it was glorious… and oh so worth it.  It also gave me the motivation to keep going on this whole ordeal.  I am proud of myself, I am getting better at cooking and it will be worth it to be healthier (and that tiny little bite of pie didn’t hurt me a bit).

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs and a Banana

Lunch: Grilled Chicken breast with avocado, an apple and some almonds

Dinner: Nom Nom Paleo’s Kahlua Pig and mashed sweet potatoes with cinnamon


Day 11 (Friday)

I’m feeling a renewed energy in completing this Whole 30.  Watching other people eat things I crave is hard, but I’m still glad I’m doing this.  I’m geared up to survive another weekend on the Whole 30.  My family was in town, so we went out to eat for dinner.  I chose Mexican food (I do live in Texas… so they are on EVERY corner) because I thought I could have fajitas without the tortillas and cheese.  So I just ate the chicken with onions and guacamole… and it was great! I really didn’t miss the tortilla.  A few weeks ago I would have said my self-control did not extend to sitting in front of a bowl of tortilla chips and guacamole and not partaking, but I survived! (I am pretty sure Mi Cocina doesn’t cook in 100% Whole 30 approved oils, but being social is more important to me than staying strictly Whole 30, so I let it slide).

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs with Grapes

Lunch: Leftover Pork Roast and Sweet Potatoes and an Apple

Dinner: fajitas with onions and guac but without cheese and the tortilla.


Day 12 (Saturday)

For the first time in a long time I have a mostly free weekend, so I spent today relaxing and catching up on errands, since I’d cooked most of the week I had a ton of leftovers, so I just had leftovers for lunch and then we made our paleo taco salad for dinner (my husband loved that meal).  Reese is an Aggie and they played Alabama today, so we went to a friend’s house to watch the game.  Fortunately they had a fruit and veggie tray… unfortunately they had BOTH a cookie cake and chips and queso (my favorite!!).  It was killer to sit and watch a football game without any of my ‘traditional’ comfort foods, but I stuck to the fruit and veggies, giving myself a break on the ‘no snacking’ rule… if I’d have not had anything I’d have broken down and had a giant piece of cookie cake by the end of the (oh so brutal) game.

Breakfast: Eggs and grapes

Lunch: Leftover Pork Roast and sweet potatoes with cinnamon

Snack: Watermelon, mango, carrots, carrots, more carrots

Dinner: Taco Salad


Day 13 (Sunday):

I’ve gotten into a routine of getting up in the morning, scrambling my eggs in coconut oil, eating, and then washing my dishes.  So far I’m not sick of scrambled eggs, but I’m going to have to come up with another alternative soon in case I do.  I came home from church and mixed up another chicken salad (shredded chicken from the crock pot, celery, almonds, mayo, grapes).  It was another good lazy day; we spent most of it by the pool at my brother’s house.  Tonight I went to a Senior Style show for one of the girls in my covenant group.  I had forgotten that it was a sit down dinner, so I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to eat anything, and then I would just be rude since they had paid for my plate! But lucky me… the salad was served without dressing and the main course was chicken with a butter sauce, but the butter sauce was put on the table, so I just ate mine without.  I was feeling pretty good about my self-control… and then they served cake.  Now if you haven’t figured out, desserts are my weakness.  I LOVE desserts… the more chocolate the better.  And fitting with their theme of Mint/Meant to Be it was chocolate cake layered with chocolate mint mousse.  I couldn’t resist. So for the second time in my Whole 30 I blatantly cheated, but like last time, I had ONE bite and quit.  I passed the dessert on to my girls who happily finished off mine as well, because like I said: DELICIOUS. (and yes… that one bite was TOTALLY worth it.)

Breakfast: Eggs with grapes

Lunch: Chicken salad

Dinner: roasted chicken, asparagus, salad (without dressing)


Day 14 (Monday):

Today starts my hardest stretch.  Twice a month I travel for 3-4 days for work.  Today starts my first stretch of travel.  For this trip I do a 7 hour round trip to Kansas.  Normally my routine is to pick up a fountain Dr. Pepper at my first stop to help me stay awake on my drive, so I knew that no DP was going to be a struggle on the drive.  Add to it that I needed to be in Kansas extra early so I woke up at 5am to drive… and I am NOT a morning person. Since it was so early, I didn’t make any breakfast and just grabbed a LARABAR.  BTW… those things are not good.  They taste like the inside of a fig newton… without the delicious outer crust.  But I knew there would be no breakfast type things on the road I could eat.  I’d also packed a cooler with my leftover chicken salad, some fruit and my coconut oil and ghee so I would be able to cook at my parent’s house. I thought I was pretty prepared.  I WAS WRONG.  I’m not sure if it was waking up so early that threw me off or the fact that I didn’t make my normal eggs for breakfast and I was low on protein, but I was STARVING on my drive.  I’d eaten an apple, but it wasn’t holding off the hunger, and I knew I needed to make it to Kansas so I could eat my chicken salad for lunch.  I stopped at a gas station (one of the bigger travel stops since they have a better selection of snacks) and found NOTHING that was Whole 30 friendly.  I did finally settle on some roasted almonds with sea salt.  The only thing maybe taboo about them is Sunflower oil.  I’m not really sure where that lands on the Whole 30 approved scale, but decided desperate times called for desperate measures.  (And my cell phone didn’t get any signal in rural Oklahoma, so I couldn’t Google that.)  The almonds delayed my hunger until I got to Kansas and could have my chicken salad.  When in Kansas I usually stay with my parents (good for Whole 30 since I have a kitchen to cook in!) and one night at my grandmothers.  Tonight I am staying at my grandmother’s for the evening.  We brought her some chicken and noodles from one of her favorite restaurants in Salina.  I was all set to eat my chicken salad for another meal, but it didn’t sound very good.  I decided to boil a couple of eggs and eat them with ghee on top. Today was definitely a rough day on the whole 30, but I learned some important things about travelling while doing this Whole 30 thing… mostly… DON’T SKIP BREAKFAST!

Breakfast: Lara Bar, Apple

Snack: Roasted Almonds

Lunch: Chicken Salad, carrots

Dinner: Two hardboiled eggs, cantaloupe, peaches


My Whole 30 Week 1 Recap

A few weeks ago I was feeling very frustrated about how I felt.  I felt like I hadn’t changed much about my diet and exercise routine, but felt like the number on the scale kept going up and none of my  clothes fit right.  About that same time I read a blog post from Chelsea at about her experience with doing a Whole 30.  I had heard about the Whole 30 when my good friend (and superfit too) Lauren had done one.  She and her husband eat Paleo a majority of the time, and she is always telling me how good she feels on it.  So that perfect storm lead me to buy the book on it.  I read most of it and decided it was something I wanted to try.  Here’s the thing… ITS CRAZY.  Especially for me.  I’m a Dr. Pepper addict, sugar junkie, and I travel for work two weeks out of the month.  But I definitely wanted something to jumpstart my healthy eating, and a shock to the system sounded like just the ticket. And since getting down to my goal weight is on my 30 Before 30 List… this sounded like the right move!   The #221whole30 challenge actually started yesterday, but that timing didn’t work out quite as well for me, so I started 6 days earlier.  And my husband isn’t participating, but agreed to eat the dinners I eat so that I wouldn’t be tempted to cheat at dinnertime.  (My self control does not extend to eating paleo while he’s chowing down on a hamburger and fries from Whataburger.) Since this blog is mostly for documenting my crafting and DIY things I wasn’t sure I was going to blog about it, but reading other people’s experiences was one of the things that got me through this week… so I thought I’d post a weekly journal of how I felt during the previous week.  If this isn’t your thing… come back tomorrow and I have a craft project to share with you!

Week One:

Day 0: I went grocery shopping on Labor Day when everyone one else was shopping for parties… I can’t tell you how many people were buying chips and dips and party supplies… I felt healthier just by buying the groceries for this thing!


Day 1 (Tuesday): I feel great! I already feel healthier (definitely just mental) but I have a ton of energy, I’m surprised at how delicious my meals are and impressed with myself for actually doing this.  I feel like 30 days is going to fly by and I’m going to be so proud of myself when I’m done.   I made mayo last night, but didn’t have light flavored olive oil, so I decided to just try it with extra virgin… BIG mistake… it was very overpowering… I guess I should start following directions.  So tonight I decided to stop by Target on my way home and pick up some light flavored olive oil.  Did you know Target keeps their olive oil on the same aisle as baking goods… it was TORTURE walking past all those pictures of cakes and brownies while going to get the olive oil… but I stayed strong! When I got home I realized I had forgotten to leave my eggs out to be room temp, I decided to follow The Healthy Foodie’s recipe for the mayo with my immersion blender.  SOOOO easy. I have perfectly white fluffy mayo that is whole 30 compliant!



Meals today:

Breakfast: Egg muffins (eggs, peppers, spinach, sausage baked in muffin tins)

Snack: (I know you aren’t really supposed to snack on the whole 30, but I won’t survive without it) grapes, almonds and carrots

Lunch: shredded chicken seasoned with salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and garlic salt and a sweet potato

Dinner: Smashed Chicken from Nom Nom Paleo’s IPad App.


Day 2 (Wednesday): I woke up this morning with major head congestion and feeling like a got run over with a truck. And that has been the highlight of my day… my mother and I got in a fight, my dog ate a dead bird in the backyard, and every little thing that could go wrong did.  I want a Dr. Pepper and a chocolate chip cookie so badly.  But I know I’m not pathetic enough to give up on this on day 2… so I’ll persevere.  Although the thought of eating eggs for breakfast for 28 more days is enough to make me want to quit right now.  I’m gonna have to find some other solutions.  But by dinner I was feeling better and was so proud of myself, after my workout class I came home, ate dinner and then went to go meet friends at one of my favorite restaurants.  But since I had just eaten my meal I wasn’t hungry and just sat and chatted with them while they ate their hamburgers and kettle chips.  EVEN when they ordered the famous Whiskey Cake, I sat and enjoyed my water… I was so proud of myself!!

Breakfast: Egg muffins (eggs, peppers, spinach, sausage baked in muffin tins)

Snack: grapes and almonds… I’m trying to cut this out!

Lunch: Leftover smashed chicken, broccoli, and an apple

Dinner: crock pot roast, ½ sweet potato and carrots

Workout: Cardio Combat at Krav- 60 minute circuit class.


Day 3 (Thursday): I’m feeling much better, my head congestion is going away (thanks to some zyrtec and nasal spray!) and as far as food goes, I’m feeling pretty good! I made scrambled eggs for breakfast and they were good, but I’m having a hard time eating enough to stay full until lunch.  I’m going to have to work on this.  I had a few grapes after I finished with my scrambled eggs.  I need to come up with more vegetables for breakfast.  This evening I went to my BFFs house to spend some quality time with her and her son, and I had also committed to making 4 pies for an event at church Sunday. Since she is an EXCELLENT baker, we decided to make them together… and by together I mean: she made the 4 pies while I played with her son Super Cooper.  Her making the pies had the added benefit of me not being at all tempted to steal a chocolate chip or two.  After my medicine wore off my head congestion is back with a vengeance, because of that, I’m having a hard time sleeping.


Breakfast: scrambled eggs and a handful of grapes

Snack: the rest of my small bag of grapes—by next week no more snacking!

Lunch: Leftover Pot Roast

Dinner: Leftover Pot Roast


Day 4 (Friday): I woke up on Day Four feeling pretty miserable.  I’d set chicken in the crock pot to make chicken salad before work for lunch.  After I’d overslept my alarm, I set about making these, pretty grumpy because my head congestion is still pretty rockin’.  And I realized I’d eaten all my grapes the day before, which I was saving for my chicken salad (grapes in chicken salad=awesome).  And went to go grab the lettuce I bought to put the chicken salad on and it wasn’t good anymore… womp womp.  So the day started out pretty rough and I was feeling very discouraged, so I decided to look up other people’s whole 30s and their first weeks. And I found this whole 30 timeline I guess I should have done my research completely before starting this whole shebang. And since last weekend was vacation and the husband and I splurged most of the weekend, probably my little day 2-3 hangover (lets me honest it’s still rockin day 4) has a lot to do with my decision to have 2 things of ice cream on Sunday night. Ice cream sandwich at the restaurant? Check… Late night run to the DQ by our hotel? Check.  Winner Winner. This research paired with more Zyrtec D and I’m feeling like maybe I’ll survive this whole thing.  I’ll feel better in a week right? That and I am very aware that I need to do better food prep next week so that not having an ingredient won’t derail me.  On a positive note, I went all morning without a snack and am not starving by lunchtime.  After running to the grocery store to get more grapes, I had the chicken salad and it was delicious (short recipe below).  The afternoon was pretty rough and I was feeling pretty run down and tired of this whole 30 thing by evening. We were set to go to a friend’s birthday party at a hibachi place that night, and I decided I was going to forget it and go ahead and eat… after all… it was just the butter and soy sauce that wasn’t ‘whole 30 approved’ I’d still be eating just meat and veggies.  So I ordered the chicken, and set about enjoying the night with friends (or mostly enjoying it… after all everyone else had a cocktail and my water was not fulfilling my want to have a glass of wine). After watching the MASSIVE slice of butter the chef used and him dousing the chicken and veggies several times with tons of soy sauce, I was second guessing my willingness to cheat.  So when they served it up on my plate I ate a couple pieces of the broccoli, but decided to pack the rest of it up for the husband to have as leftovers later, and ate more of my delicious chicken salad when I got home that evening.  I was proud of myself for not really cheating, but still feeling very deprived by the Whole 30.

Meals Today:

Breakfast: scrambled eggs and half an avocado.

Lunch: Paleo Chicken Salad: 1 Cup paleo mayo, handful of almonds chopped, 3 stalks of celery chopped, two chicken breasts cooked in the crockpot overnight, and a handful of grapes chopped into smaller pieces. FREAKING DELICIOUS.  One of the best chicken salad’s I’ve ever had, and its healthier to boot! I will DEF be making this again. And I had an apple.

Dinner: Leftover Chicken Salad


Day 5 (Saturday):

Saturday the husband and I were planning on spending the whole day at our church building a stage for the youth room with some of our friends and youth parents.  According to the Whole 30 Timeline (link above) I think my 2 days of angry was really just one afternoon and evening (Friday).  Saturday I was well into the: I JUST WANT A NAP phase.  And I was more keenly aware of the things I couldn’t have.  Normally with a day long project like this, I’d have swung by early to get a large Dr Pepper to enjoy and take the edge of the physical labor.  And when everyone else stopped to take a break and enjoy Jimmy John’s, I drove home to have chicken salad in my kitchen alone. I think the strain on being social that inherently comes with a Whole 30 has been the hardest part for me. But the good news is, my husband is being hugely supportive, which definitely helps. AND I have the best friends a girl could ask for.  A close friend had invited Reese and I to dinner Saturday night at her place.  At first I’d told her we couldn’t since I was doing this crazy Whole 30 thing and wouldn’t be able to do dinner, but she amazingly offered to make a Whole 30 compliant dinner.  And man, she outdid herself.  IT WAS DELICIOUS. I tasted her sweet potatoes and my first though was… oh… these taste too good, they are DEFINITELY not Whole 30 compliant.  I wasn’t too worried because I wasn’t so happy to be on this thing Saturday night, but  after she told us everything that was in it… they totally were! WOOO HOOO!! So a big shout out to Ashley for helping me keep this whole thing up (and being willing to eat a Whole 30 meal even though she isn’t participating!) and even sending me home with leftovers.

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs

Lunch: Chicken Salad and an Apple

Dinner: Pork, Chicken, mashed sweet potatoes with cinnamon, brussel sprouts and onions


Day 6 (Sunday): I’m definitely still in the tired phase, and so many of my weekend activities are programmed around food that I can’t have… somehow Sunday morning doesn’t feel like Sunday morning without donuts.  But being compliant is becoming a bit more second nature to me.  I’m still majorly craving Dr Pepper and some sweets, and somehow can’t quite quit telling Reese about it.  But I can definitely feel the difference in my body from a week ago and I know I’m doing my body a favor by doing this.  I talked our smaller group for building on Sunday to go to Chipotle for lunch so I could have a salad with Carnitas and guac.  Although guac without chips?? It turned out to be delicious and a nice way to be social and follow the Whole 30. I made my food plan for the week and went to Whole Foods to stock up for the week.  But remind me next time not to shop at Whole Foods on a Sunday afternoon… that place was a MADHOUSE. Foodwise, I’m glad the weekend is over and I won’t be quite as tempted to cheat and suck down a Route 44 Vanilla Dr. Pepper.

Breakfast: scrambled eggs and some grapes

Lunch: Carnitas Salad with Guac from Chipotle

Dinner: Leftovers from Sat night’s dinner, with an appetizer of a cup (pint?) of watermelon at Whole Foods (I was HUNGRY shopping for groceries)


Day 7 (Monday): I woke up this morning before my alarm, feeling pretty great and full of energy.  I have a good food plan for the week and I’m even kinda excited about some of it.  My allergy stuff from last week is mostly gone, and I’m feeling pretty good about being able to do this for the next little while.  I’m still not sick of scrambled eggs in a little coconut oil, so that’s a plus! Now that my allergy stuff is gone and I’m feeling better I’m going to start back to my full workout routine.  And I start training for a half marathon this week! Here goes nothing!

Breakfast: scrambled eggs and grapes

Lunch: Spinach Salad with grilled chicken, pear, fig and walnut dressing, an apple and some grapes

Dinner: Spaghetti with Spaghetti Squash- my dad’s homemade sauce recipe that is Whole 30 compliant! (except for the butter which I switched out with coconut oil.

Workout: Combat Cardio


Overall I feel great, I can tell there has been a change in my body for the better.  I do have more energy most of the time, but eating Whole 30 is HARD.  The people who wrote the book say it isn’t… and it might not be for someone who eats paleo most of the time, but going from a completely NOT paleo diet to a Whole 30… is very hard.  I’m going to stick with it and see how it goes, but I’m guessing I’m not going to eat paleo for life.  I’m seven days in and I still want a cookie and a Dr. Pepper. If you follow along, follow me on Instagram or Twitter- my username for both is amusingmj! (you can click the circular icons over on the right in the sidebar to do it easily!)