Well folks, I made it 19 days and then opted to choose social engagement and a night cooking with my husband instead of complying with Whole30 rules.
Could I have chosen water at the MBA School happy hour instead on Friday? Yes. But they were serving a really good Pittsburgh IPA and I wanted to enjoy a beer with my friends. That night, Alex and I cooked a London Broil for dinner and he used butter instead of ghee and tossed in some flour to thicken up the sauce into a gravy. And I have no regrets or disappointments about not ‘lasting’ the 30 days.
Of the past 6 months, this recent Friday and Saturday were the first days that actually felt like a ‘normal’ weekend. I closed my computer at 6 p.m. on Friday and met Alex and friends at school for happy hour. We came home to cook dinner together which we haven’t done in months. On Saturday morning, we slept in and woke up with nothing on his agenda until 3p. Usually, Alex has school commitments all weekend long and I’m left to my own devices so to have a Saturday morning together with neither of us stressing about needing to be somewhere or do something? Such a treat!
With a beautiful blue skied morning on Saturday, we drove down to the Strip District for brunch and wandering. While I ate as Whole30 as possible at brunch, I chose to not make a huge deal out of not being 100% compliant. Maybe/probably they cooked my eggs in butter or a non-compliant oil. YOLO.
I debated most of Friday about how I would handle the happy hour – should I even go? I wanted to be compliant because the book says to do 30 days and I hate breaking rules. But I also wanted to enjoy a beer with my husband and friends. It would have been easy to just skip the happy hour and make a fuss about butter/flour at dinner but it was such a nice evening that I didn’t even care. Emotional well being > completing 30 days of compliant eating, in my book.
So it may have only been 19 days but I do feel like I’ve gotten the benefit of Whole30. I feel great. I’m eating more fruits and veggies. I’m drinking lots of water and tea. I didn’t break Whole30 because I couldn’t do it; earlier, I wanted to quit because I was bored and tired in prepping/cooking my food. If I’d stopped then, THAT would have felt like quitting. But this? This doesn’t. This feels like an adult choice of moderation.
I went into this as a learning opportunity. I’m not a person who craves sweets or binges on bad-for-me foods so I wasn’t expecting for Whole30 to cure me or radically change my thoughts on food. I wanted Whole30 to help me be more mindful about what I was eating and to give my body a reset which is exactly what I got.
This exercise has taught me to be more conscious about what I’m eating; reading food labels in preparing for Whole30 was eye opening as to what is included in the pre-packaged foods or sauces I love. It’s astounding how many foods have added sugar or are chock full of sodium!
If you break the rules in Whole30, the program suggests the participant restart their 30 day count. I won’t be restarting my count back but I am planning to move forward mostly eating per Whole30.
Striving for the healthiest, least processed option will continue to be something I do. I’ll continue to keep gluten and dairy in my diet to a minimum and will cut back on alcohol consumption because it just feels better that way. But I am not going to beat myself up if I go out for a burger and fries on a Friday night or bake a pizza at home on a busy week night.
Because YOLO, friends.