Archive | Whole 30

5 Things I Learned From My Second Whole 30

whole-30-meal-plan-1I bet you thought you wouldn’t have to hear any more about my silly Whole 30 that I recently did, did you?  Well, I wanted to do a kind of wrap up post on things that I learned during the Whole 30 and ways to help you be much more successful than I was.

As I stated in my previous Whole 30 posts, I really do this as a reset for my body and eating habits.  The side effects are great, losing weight, less bloating, and clearer skin, but it’s more of a mindset reset than anything else.  We sometimes get into a rut of what we’re eating and all too often it’s things that just aren’t good for us or our bodies.  Whole 30 cuts all of that out and puts you down a much better path.

Unfortunately, I didn’t do very well this round.  I cheated a lot, but overall think my main meals were much healthier than they had been up until I started.  After I finished the thirty days, I haven’t kept up with it as well as I’d like.  I should probably read the tips below to help me get back on the wagon again before the holidays start.  Here’s what I learned, hopefully they will help you stay on the wagon if you’re attempting a Whole 30.

Lesson Learned #1-Whole 30 While Working is Easier

My first Whole 30 was done when I was still working out of the house.  It was so much easier!  There are just too many temptations while at home.  Food is always accessible at home, that wasn’t the case at the workplace.  I only ate what I took to work with me, but when my refrigerator and pantry are just around the corner I ended up eating much more than I should.  I also snacked so much more while at home.

Lesson Learned #2- Whole 30 With Kids is Hard

The first Whole 30 I did was before I had kids, and it was so much easier.  While my daughter typically eats everything we eat, even Whole 30 foods, she did eat things that aren’t approved.  Therefore, I ended up eating things that weren’t Whole 30 approved because I hated seeing food go to waste from her plate.

My biggest recommendation is to give your kids less food than you think they’ll eat and give them more only if they want more so as not to be tempted to eat off of their plate. Also, it’s not the end of the world to save the leftover food or just throw it out, especially if it’s something that’s really tempting.

Lesson Learned #3- You HAVE to Plan Meals and Snacks

Not having meals and snacks planned out ahead of time will kill your success on Whole 30.  Finding compliant snacks is pretty difficult, but you’ll quickly get used to eating bell pepper strips, pickles, or an apple as a snack.  The best part is after a few days you won’t need or want much else as a snack.  But if you find yourself snacking too much, you’re probably not eating enough protein and healthy fats.  So up your meat and avocado game to fill up.

Planning meals is another way to be very successful with Whole 30.  Whether it be writing all of your meals out for each day, meal prepping, or cooking in batches, you have to have food readily available that’s compliant.  I like to do a combination of meal planning, prepping, and batch cooking.  Some nights for dinner, I just double how much I make so I can have lunch for the next couple of days.

I also find that batch cooking and planning ahead makes going out to eat, or eating with friends much easier.  Just eat before you go and you’ll be so much less likely to indulge in something not compliant.

Lesson Learned #4- Experimentation is Great

While some may think Whole 30 limits the things you can eat, I tend to think it just makes experimenting and trying new recipes your new normal.  It’s easy to stick to just a few of the things that you can eat, but that gets boring.  For you and your taste buds.  It’s easy to find new recipes and new ways to cook things on Pinterest or Whole 30/Paleo blogs.

Lesson Learned #5- Accountability and Support is Key

Whole 30 is hard, not as hard as other things in life, but it’s still quite a challenge.  If you have an accountability partner that is encouraging you or even doing it with you, it’s so much easier.  A support system is key. If you’re family isn’t planning on doing it with you, they at least need to support you and try not to tempt you.  A fun gift to yourself at the end of the thirty days is also a great motivator. Think a new pair of expensive jeans, bonus, they’ll fit better!

For all the naysayers in your friend and family circles, I find Whole 30 gives me a whole new confidence in dealing with them.  It’s simple, you’re doing it and you know what you can and can’t have.  Whole 30 makes it so easy to say no and that’s it.  How many times and situations in life do we feel like we can’t say no? Or feel the need to explain our “No’s”?  Not with Whole 30, the rules are simple, just say no and move on.  I promise you can do it.

So, are you ready to start Whole 30?  If so, my first recommendation is to wait until after the holidays, haha!  Post in the comments below if you’ve ever attempted one.  If so, what is your biggest piece of advice?  Have a great weekend!  Stay tuned next week for a really sweet post!

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Whole 30 Weekly Meal Plan: Week 5

Hurray!  It’s the last week that you’ll have to see my meal plan for Whole 30.  I don’t know if I can even really say that I’m doing Whole 30 at this point because I’ve been cheating so much.

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Saturday:
Dinner: I went to an Octoberfest party, so I ate grains, dairy, and sugar, yikes!  I did make this German Potato Salad though, which was mostly compliant. I swapped honey for sugar, which is better, but still not 100% compliant.

Sunday:
Breakfast: Spinach and berry smoothie, scrambled eggs
Lunch: Tuna on a bed of spinach with a veggie salsa on top
Dinner: Chicken and broccoli, love this recipe because it’s so quick and you only use one pan!

Monday:
Breakfast: Homemade sausage
Lunch: Turkey lunchmeat with mayo, German potato salad
Dinner: Crockpot Moroccan chicken
Bad Stuff: So much! A bowl of cereal, some chocolate, and a small piece of cake

Tuesday:
Breakfast: Macadamia nuts, an orange
Lunch: Tuna on a bed of spinach with a veggie salsa
Dinner: This autumn salad with grilled chicken. I made a few adjustments to the dressing recipe to make it compliant.
Bad Stuff: Cereal

Wednesday:
Breakfast: Two over easy eggs
Lunch: We had family in town, so things aren’t very compliant when that happens.  Chicken fingers and fries.
Dinner: A spicy steak salad, I’m pretty sure the dressing wasn’t compliant
Bad Stuff: A pumpkin spice muffin, a smore, and my entire lunch

Thursday:
Breakfast: Fruit, spinach, coconut butter smoothie
Lunch: Roasted sausage, peppers, and potatoes, it’s a variation of this recipe.  I love it because you just cut everything up, throw it on a sheet pan, and 20-30 minutes later your meal is ready.  Plus, it’s delicious!
Dinner: Thai shrimp with rice, but I didn’t have the rice.  I love this recipe.  It’s the closest you can get to Thai flavors without going to a Thai restaurant.
Bad stuff: A cookie

Well, that finally wraps it up.  Did you join along on this round of Whole 30?  Did you at least get some new meal ideas and healthy alternatives to food that you love?  I hope I proved that there are a ton of things you can eat while on Whole 30.

But please don’t take my attempt at Whole 30 this time as the way to do it.  I cheated a lot and had no self control.  In the next week or so I’m going to give you a list of things I’ve learned while attempting Whole 30 and some tips to help you be successful if you want to try it.   Have a great weekend!

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Whole 30 Weekly Meal Plan: Week 4

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I’m almost done with Whole 30!  But I wouldn’t say that these past four weeks have been compliant at all.  Hopefully though you are getting an idea of things you can and can’t eat while doing Whole 30.  Maybe you’ll even try to incorporate some of these meal ideas into your everyday life.

Friday:
Breakfast: Pumpkin Custard, kale salad with olive oil, salt, and lemon juice
Lunch: Totally random mix of things that I shouldn’t have eaten including, a hot dog bun, potato salad, and a mini Hershey’s bar
Dinner: Lasagna, oops.  My husband’s uncle took us to dinner and I caved.  It was delicious!

Saturday:
Breakfast: Homemade pork sausage, scrambled eggs
Lunch: Turkey lunchmeat, pickles, grapes
Dinner: Chili, this was an amazing recipe.  I highly recommend trying it this fall.

Sunday:
Breakfast: Pumpkin custard, and some pumpkin bread (not Whole 30)
Lunch: I ate everything I shouldn’t, carbs, sugar, dairy, alcohol
Dinner: Pretty much the same thing as lunch, yikes!

Monday:
Breakfast: Homemade sausage, grapes
Lunch: A hot dog and then chili, why I didn’t think to put the chili on the hot dog I don’t know.  But hot dogs are definitely not Whole 30 approved.
Dinner: Roasted pork tenderloin, roasted broccoli and baby potatoes
Bad Stuff: I couldn’t not eat some cake to celebrate the blog birthday and my anniversary!

Tuesday:
Breakfast: Chili with over easy eggs on them, yum
Lunch: Tuna with homemade mayo on a spinach salad and red and orange peppers
Dinner: Baked salsa chicken with red peppers and onions
Bad Stuff: More cake, because I need it OUT OF MY HOUSE!

Wednesday:
Breakfast: Homemade pork sausage and 1/2 an avocado
Lunch: Leftover salsa chicken with peppers and onions, and grapes
Dinner: Italian chicken sausage, kale, and red onion sheet pan dinner
Snack: Vanilla coconut butter, just a couple spoonfuls throughout the day and it really held me over

Thursday:
Breakfast: Sweet potato and apple hash
Lunch: I can’t remember and that’s sad because it was only yesterday.
Dinner: Steak, potato, and mushroom kabobs with a spinach salad
Bad stuff: A bowl of cereal

So I think the biggest thing I’ve learned this week is that I can really curb my meals, but occasionally need a little something that’s not Whole 30 approved.  I feel like I could keep up this sort of balance for awhile which is a good thing.

I’m down to the final week, so I’m really going to give it my best shot.  Have you been doing Whole 30 too?  What have you learned about your eating habits?  Have a great weekend and remember to just eat real food.

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Whole 30 Weekly Meal Recap: Week 3

It’s Week 3 of my second Whole 30.  I’ve included a whole new category to my weekly meal recap.  It’s called “bad stuff” because it seems I’m unable to keep my little paws off of things that I shouldn’t be eating.  So, don’t eat anything in the “bad stuff” category if you’re trying to do Whole 30.  Don’t be like me!

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I think this week is basically a wash and I should start fresh tomorrow.  I started this Whole 30 to reset and get prepared for an upcoming weekend away.  That weekend will be here in two weeks, so after today I really need to get serious.  I’m pretty much going to be starting over from scratch and it will not be fun, but I need to focus on this and just do it with no excuses! Hopefully the meal recap next week will be completely compliant.

Friday
Breakfast: I don’t remember, ha
Lunch: Grilled chicken breast, pickles
Dinner: Bratwurst
Bad Stuff: My daughter’s leftover grilled cheese, two mini corn dogs

Saturday
Breakfast: Peaches with coconut milk and macadamia nuts
Lunch: Chipotle steak salad with guacamole
Dinner: Pulled pork, ribs, sweet potato/apple hash (this is a great side dish, but would be excellent for breakfast too!)
Bad Stuff: A bite of snickers apple salad, bacon wrapped apple with brie cheese

We were at an Apple Festival Party where everything had apples in it, and I just couldn’t resist that Snickers Apple Salad.  I hadn’t had it since college.  One of my roommates would always make it when she had a bad day, so if I saw that in the fridge, I knew to steer clear for awhile!  The bacon wrapped apple and brie was delicious, but I definitely didn’t realize there was brie in it until I took a bite.

Sunday
Breakfast: Roasted broccoli, half an apple, turkey lunchmeat
Lunch: Tuna salad bowlwhich from Which Wich, it wasn’t very good unfortunately
Dinner: Lettuce wrapped burger with avocado, grilled veggies, pickles, and fruit
Bad Stuff: 3 oreos, strawberry shortcake

Monday
Breakfast: Kale and berry smoothie
Lunch: Leftover sausage and kale soup
Dinner: We were at a baseball game, so options were limited.  A few bites of pizza, a burger (with cheese, sauce, and the bun)  It made me feel pretty gross so I know that what I’m doing is helping my body, but why am I having such a hard time sticking with it the second time around?
Bad Stuff: 1 1/2 cinnamon rolls

Tuesday
Breakfast: An egg, spinach, and artichoke souffle from Panera (lots of things I shouldn’t eat like dairy and pastry were in there)
Lunch: I don’t remember, sorry
Dinner: Turkey burger with marinara
Bad Stuff: 4 oreos, 1 mini hershey’s chocolate bar (what is wrong with me???)

Wednesday
Breakfast: Pumpkin Custard, strawberries (love this pumpkin custard! Just throw everything in a bowl blend it up and bake.)
Lunch: Rotel turkey meat on a bed of kale
Dinner: Asada tacos, but just the inside, no tortilla for me, sweet potato fries
Bad Stuff: Two bites of pancakes (with syrup), a giant bowl of cereal

Thursday
Breakfast: Pumpkin custard, two over easy eggs
Lunch: Shredded buffalo chicken lettuce wraps, cucumbers
Dinner: Caesar salad (with non-compliant dressing), steak, green beans
Bad Stuff: a bowl of cereal

The theme this week is to just not be like me.  I know that overall I’m eating much healthier than I have been in the past few months, but I fell off the wagon hard this week.

Who is ready to reset with me tomorrow?  We can do this!  Have a great weekend readers and don’t forget to enter the giveaway for the blog birthday party box full of pink and gold party items.  The winner will be chosen on Monday on the actual blog birthday and there will be a great post about all that I’ve learned in the past year blogging, so be sure to come back!

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Whole 30 Weekly Meal Plan: Week 2

whole-30-meal-plan-1Well we’re on to week 2 of Whole 30, and I’m just going to preface this entire post with the fact that I obviously have issues with wasted food.  Pretty much every meal my daughter ate this week she either didn’t eat everything or in typical two year old fashion changed her mind and decided not to eat what she asked for.

Consequently, instead of saving it for later or throwing it out I ate a lot of random things off of her plate.  Most of them were not Whole 30 compliant.  In the end, I’m eating way more healthy than I have been.  Plus the non-compliant things I have been eating are pretty minimal.  I know that’s not following the Whole 30 rules, but I’m still better off for doing this.

Friday
Breakfast: Cereal (oops)
Lunch: Turkey burger, avocado, carrots
Dinner:  Crockpot Moroccan Chicken

Saturday
Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs with Roasted Broccoli
Lunch: Italian Chicken Sausage with Peppers, Cucumbers
Dinner: I’ll preface this by saying we had dinner at our Church’s Fall Festival, so options were limited and I didn’t plan ahead. I tried to choose the most Whole 30 compliant option, but then temptation got me! Grilled Chicken Sandwich (even the bun, oops!), a handful of chips and popcorn

Sunday
Breakfast: 1/2 an avocado, peaches with coconut milk (this is like peaches and cream, delicious!)
Lunch: Chicken salad on a bed of spinach and arugula
Snack: Grapes
Dinner: Cedar plank grilled salmon and green beans

Monday
Breakfast: Peaches and coconut milk
Lunch: Turkey lunchmeat (I finally found some that doesn’t have a ridiculous ingredient list!), homemade mayo, pickles, a little leftover chicken salad
Snack: Almonds
Dinner: Beef Szechuan

Tuesday
Breakfast: Avocado toast (yep, I ate bread) with tomoatoes
Lunch: Tuna on a bed of spinach and arugula, avocado
Dinner: Rotel turkey tacos on a bed of spinach with avocado and tomato.  Just add a can of Rotel to some ground turkey and it’s the fastest way to make spicy, flavorful “tacos”

Wednesday
Breakfast: Peaches with coconut milk and macadamia nuts
Lunch: I can’t remember for the life of me.
Snack: Spinach banana muffins (made with flour, so they aren’t Whole 30 compliant). These are great to get your kids to eat some vegetables though!
Dinner: Kale, Italian sausage, and potato soup

Thursday
Breakfast: Fruit, kale, and almond milk smoothie, two over easy eggs
Lunch: Leftover kale, italian sausage, and potato soup
Snack: Ugh, this gets ugly, two mini Hershey’s bars, some crackers
Dinner: Cracklin’ chicken thighs (basically fried chicken with no breading, yum!), roasted broccoli (you know I love it!)

TDH Tips Graphic
1. If you have an immersion blender, it makes making smoothies incredibly easy.  Just throw everything into cup, stick the immersion blender in, and in about 30 seconds you’re smoothie is perfectly done.  It’s also great for making your own mayo.  Just add 2/3 cup avocado oil (or any other light flavored oil) and an egg in the cup, blend, and you have your own mayo.

2. Print out the Whole 30 rules and put them in your kitchen, on your fridge, or in your pantry for a quick reference and reminder to stay on track.

Now it’s on to week 3, and I think I’m really going to kick it into high gear and stop cheating!  When I linked the Whole 30 rules above, I read most of them again as a review and it really put things into perspective.  This is only 30 days, I choose what I eat, no one is forcing me, and I’m an adult, I got this.  But most of all, there are so many harder things than eating real food for 30 days.

Halfway there!  Let’s do this!  Who’s doing it with me?  Comment below with your favorite Whole 30 meal.  Bonus points if it can be made in under 30 minutes in one pan!

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Celebrating everyday!