18 Things on Day 18.

1. I knew time would fly by, but wow, it’s already Day 18.
2. Only 12 more days!
3. I know you could’ve done the math yourself. I’m sorry.
4. No tiger blood yet.
5. No benefits of any sort, really.
6. Except that I feel great about my choices.
7. And that’s way better than feeling guilty and remorseful.
8. Also, I may be sleeping more soundly and waking up less often.
9. But that could be because I’ve been going to be late and I’m tired.
10. I’m still craving juice.
11. And Wilson’s Creek Almond Champagne. (It makes the best mimosas.)
12. I experience this weird energy lull between 9am and 11am every day.
13. But maybe I just don’t want to be at work.
14. I don’t feel like I’m losing any weight, but I never do even when I am.
15. I always just feel like a fat blob.
16. My goal? Is to lose weight naturally eating a whole foods diet.
17. Which means no more counting. Points or calories or grams or ounces.
18. And whatever weight that is? Be happy about it.
19. But can I be happy if I never fit into my skinny jeans again? I guess only time will tell.

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And then it was easy.

Despite feeling like hammered shit for the first week, Round 2 has been incredibly easy compared to Round 1. Almost scary easy. Like I must be doing something wrong easy.

In Round 1, I was constantly going to the store. I spent what felt like hours pouring over food labels and the Whole30 cheat sheets to determine what I could and couldn’t eat. I was always starving by dinner and scrambling to make something easy and compliant. I dreamed of sweet lattes and felt the deprivation every morning in a physical way. (Only a small exaggeration.)

In Round 2? There’s been none of that.

Granted… I have done a few things differently. I was actually, like, prepared for Round 2. Which was a HUGE improvement over Round 1 where I was not at all physically, mentally, or emotionally prepared for what I was about to do.

I went grocery shopping prior to Round 2. I bought food in bulk and froze it to eliminate the numerous trips to the grocery store. I cooked up a big batch of sweet potato chili and haven’t had to fret over a single lunch yet.

And bonus! Manfriend took a job right across the street from Mother’s Market (which is only my favorite grocery store). It’s been super easy to just pop in there for fresh fruits and veggies. And yes, I know I just complained about how I was always stopping at the grocery store during Round 1 and, like, what’s the diff? BUT that was out of my way and a pain in the ass. Now it’s like I’m already right there!

Plus, since I’m buying fresh produce every other day or so, it’s cut way back on waste. (I’m not buying a ton of produce for the week and then throwing it out when I don’t eat it fast enough.) (Also, it’s super humid in my home and, I swear, things rot so much faster.)

I suppose the thing that’s made Whole 30: Round 2 even easier is the fact that I’m actually following what the plan intended: a whole foods diet. I’m not still trying to fit in pre-packaged foods (thus pouring over labels to find the one that’s compliant). Although my meals aren’t super creative (I’ll get there eventually), I’m eating good, healthy, filling foods.

Yes, on Day 12, I still experience energy lulls. I worry that I’m not eating enough protein (especially at breakfast) as sometimes I feel this general weakness throughout my whole body. And yeah, I struggle with the craving for, not coffee this time, but juice (WTF). Despite all that, I’m excited for the choices and changes I’m making for my health. I’m excited that it’s feeling more easy and natural. And I’m super excited for the tiger blood.

Sure, I might cry a little inside when I pass the Easter candy at Target, but those are just growing pains, right?

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Peppermint Bark Trauma

On Day 5, I woke up and my headache was gone! It was awesome! And then it came back in the afternoon which was so not awesome. And then I went home and all I could think about was getting into bed and napping until it was time to pick up Manfriend (who needs to buy a car, like, yesterday). And then I went to pick him up and he asked me how my day was and I was, like, “fine.” And that was it. Because I was so exhausted I just couldn’t bring myself to have a simple conversation. Also, I didn’t shower yesterday. I had grand plans to do so before bed, but holy hell, the exhaustion! So, yeah, Whole30 has reduced me to this stinking pile of limp uselessness.

On Day 6, I feel mostly better. (Could be the shower.) The headache is mostly gone. I’m still counting the minutes until I can get into bed, but today is my “Friday” and, come on, it’s been a long week! I had a touch or irritability this morning (where “a touch” equals I snapped at someone so bad I had to apologize later) (embarrassing), but I’m feeling pretty even keeled now. (But that could be because everyone has gone home and I’m blessedly alone.) Other than a general feeling of weakness (maybe I need more iron?), I’m not doing too bad.

Yesterday, I was standing in a coworker’s office when I remembered she had a leftover box of Ghirardelli’s peppermint bark sitting under her desk. My entire body lit up and for a split second all the awful feelings melted away and I felt totally normal as I reached for something I knew would give me the boost (sugar) I was craving. I was kneeling down for it when I remembered. Whole30. No sugar. The headache came back not long after that.

My sugar dragon is a snarling, rabid beast and it won’t be easily tamed.

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Oh, my achy breaky head.

So, it’s day 4. I know it’s only day 4, but wow! It’s already day 4! Here’s what’s happening on day 4:

1. Oh, my head. Achy since day 1 until last night when it exploded into a full-blown migraine. This did not happen in Round 1, however I also didn’t have time to stuff my face full of sugar and processed garbage before Round 1 started, so I guess I’m just paying the price for what happened the week before Round 2 began. (Oh, the horror. The sweet, sugary horror.)

2. I’m pooping a lot. Which also didn’t happen in Round 1. And which is kinda cool because I’ve always been irregular in this area of my life and a really good poop feels very cleansing. (Is that just me?)

3. I love Trader Joe’s almond butter. I ate it on a banana this morning and I swear it tasted almost like candy. I mean, not at all like candy, but almost.

4. The manfriend was living in Texas during Round 1. It was way easier to do this while he was 1500 miles away. Him being here now is a constant temptation. Don’t get me wrong- Manfriend is super supportive (despite previous juice story), but together we have bad habits. Snacks and candy while we binge watch our fave shows. Going out to eat All. The. Time. Stopping at Starbucks before going to work or church or anywhere else. Over time, I’ve started to equate food with fun and that might be my biggest problem.

5. According to Whole30, I should be past this phase of feeling like shit and ready to kill everyone around me. (Their words, not mine.) Since I’m still feeling like shit and obviously behind schedule, I can’t help but wonder if this might turn into a Whole35? I hope not. (I mean, the goal is to turn this into a lifestyle, but damn it, I want some juice!) I really hope I wake up feeling better and in a murderin’ mood tomorrow.

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No juice and certainly no cocktails.

Yesterday was rough.

Manfriend had an unexpected day off. It was such a beautiful day we decided to relax by the pool and grill a couple of steaks. A cold cocktail (or two) would have gone down so freaking easy. Alas, I tried Kombucha for the first time. Meh. Also, why is Kombucha allowed, but juice is a no-no? (I’m sure I read the reasoning behind this at some point during Round 1 and I’m sure it even made sense, but now I’ve forgotten and I’m pissed about it.)

Speaking of juice. Yesterday we stopped at Mother’s Market and I said to Manfriend, “I would KILL for a juice right now.” (Mother’s has a juice bar and, OMG, yum.) Manfriend patted me on the shoulder and said, “Poor pal.” (Because “pal” is our “honey” or “sweetheart” or “darling.”) (Don’t ask.) And just moments later, he asked me, “Would you mind if I got one?” Asshole.

The motivation and excitement of Round 1 is nonexistent in Round 2. (Why would I be motivated? I know how awful this is.) I have to keep reminding myself that this is a reset. This is the start of my long-term sugar-free whole foods lifestyle. That in a couple of weeks I’m going to feel really, really good. So good I won’t even want to reintroduce these eliminated foods back into my diet.

But right now? I feel sluggish, my head aches, and I can’t help but think a giant bowl of ice cream would help.

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And then it began. Again.

So, it’s April 1st and thus Whole 30: Round 2 begins.

Despite grand plans for grocery shopping and meal prepping, I am ill prepared. Which is just ridiculous because I knew exactly what I was getting myself into. But no, I was more concerned with how much junk food I could stuff in my mouth on my last day than I was preparing.

Hence, lunch today is a bowl of totally awesome Whole30-compliant Zuppa Toscano soup. Except, made less awesome by the fact that I made it two? three? four weeks ago? and it might very well kill me now or at least give a me a serious case of the poops. Here’s hoping it does neither as that could ruin both Whole30: Round 2 and my plans for eating the soup again.

I made the soup during a very brief re-commitment to eating healthy. Where “very brief” equals as long as it took to make the soup, store it in the fridge, and promptly join the “eat everything in sight” diet. (It is absolutely no surprise that I’ve gained back every last one of the 15 pounds I lost during Round 1.) (15 pounds!!!)

Halfway thru Day 1, I feel fat, tired, and lethargic. But none of this is any surprise after spending the entire month of March eating whatever I wanted and, like, one sad bowl of soup.

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And then she quit.

Snob alert:

I did the Whole30 in January. And now I think I’m better than everyone.

On day 10, I wrote this about it:

“I wasn’t exactly prepared to start on January 1st. We settled on the 2nd. And come January 2nd, I promptly lost all motivation. I don’t want to give up sugar! I don’t want to give up my morning venti cinnamon dolce latte, no whip! (Which, by the way, has a whopping 45 grams of sugar!) I don’t want to plan meals! And read ingredients! And cook all… the… time. (Like, seriously, it’s a FULL TIME JOB.) But I was roughly pulled along with my darling mother and my adorable sister who, oddly enough, I want to murder right now. Yes, right this very moment. Because this has been the worst thing I’ve ever done! (Okay, maybe the best, but still. The WORST.)”

I never hit “publish” on that post because adulting is hard and you often get interrupted by important, adulty things that you really have no interest in doing, but alas, you’re an adult (when did that happen?) and you have to stop what you’re doing and, I don’t know, be responsible. (Imagine how much worse it would be if I had children.)

Despite not having ever published that post, you’re in luck.

Cuz I’m doing the Whole30 again in April and I just can’t think of a better time to start a new blog than when I’m about to become a total health snob.

Already, with four whole days left to feel fat and remorseful about all the processed shit I’m stuffing in my face, I’m feeling a twinge of why the fuck are you doing this again?

Because I really liked the way I felt on Whole30.

Okay, no, I didn’t like the way I felt the first few days when I was unprepared and stressed out and had no idea what I’d gotten myself into and had to stop at the grocery store every fucking night.

And, no, I didn’t like the way I felt between days five and eight when what I can only assume were sugar withdrawals hit and I was nauseous and achy and miserable and couldn’t eat anything.

And, no, I didn’t like the way I felt for the five days after that either because, damn it, I just didn’t.

But those last two weeks? Something happened. Maybe it really was tiger’s blood… or maybe it was just my body reveling in all the wholesome goodness I was feeding it… who knows. While I didn’t have this amazing abundance of energy that so many Whole30-ers brag about, I did feel… good.

I felt in control.

I felt good about being in control. Of my body. For maybe the first time in my life.

That is, until I started eating sugar again.

I was 100% sugar-free for FORTY WHOLE DAYS and the short and sweet of it is that, despite my resolution to eliminate sugar for good (with the exception of special occasions, because come on), once I added it back into my diet it was business as usual very quickly.

I decided to do Whole30 again for a few reasons. One, I’m a weirdo and like to challenge myself (even more than I realized). Two, imagine how much more smug I can be after I finish it TWICE. Three, I like the idea of another reset… especially now that I know sugar is something I need to eliminate for good.

So, I’m quitting. I’m quitting a few foods for a few days. I’m quitting sugar for a few more days. Like, a lifetime’s worth? And I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me incredibly fucking sad to say that. So, maybe the problem is worse than I realized because it shouldn’t have this much of an emotional impact, should it? It’s just SUGAR. And it’s really, really bad for me. Like, poisonously bad.

Once upon a time, after I lost a bunch of weight and then gained it back, a coworker very sneakily left me a pamphlet for FA. Food Anonymous. Because she thought I was an addict. And I totally scoffed it off, like, I can stop this any time I want to!

I’m starting to think she was on to something.

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