Well it’s done… our Whole30 (which actually lasted for 55 days) is over. WE DID IT!
Accomplished doesn’t even begin to describe how I am feeling. But I will say, that I am more motivated than ever to continue this lifestyle. My health is something that I have taken for granted the past 23 years and as I sit here preparing to tell you about the transformation I have made in the past two months, I realize that I never want to be at the place that I was again. Now, don’t get me wrong – I enjoyed my time of eating with no abandon and drinking like it was going out of style. Let’s be serious, I more than enjoyed myself – I had the time of my life. Looking back, I wouldn’t trade those memories (or sometimes, lack there of) for anything – but I think I have come to a point where that is not what I want my life to be about. I don’t need to eat an entire bag of chips because… HELLO, there will always be another day when I can have a few. I don’t need to see how many beers I can throw back at a tailgate because I HATE being hung over. Will I indulge myself in a bowl of queso and a basket of chips every now and then? OF COURSE! (I am already planning a visit to my favorite Mexican Restaurant for when I am back in DSM in October.) Will I go out with friends and enjoy one too many drinks? OF COURSE! But the question becomes now – do I need to do that EVERY weekend? No, I don’t.
For the past two months, I can honestly say that I did not cheat on our meal plans once. That is something I have NEVER been able to say for any diet I have ever tried in the past. I think the reason I bought into this lifestyle so much was because I could actually feel that I was fueling my body with what it needed. I wasn’t depriving myself of food in general, like I had so many times before. I was eating until I was full and I was eating DELICIOUS food – yet I was still seeing the results.
I am proud to say that I have lost a total of 20 pounds since August 1st. This was a number that I had hoped for, but did not know if it was truly possible. Being active while focusing on our new eating plan was, I believe, a huge part of my success. But I want to stress again that I was not doing any crazy workouts – I was doing at least an hour of physical activity 5-6 days a week, but this included walking, running, work out classes…basically whatever I felt like doing besides just sitting on the couch. I will tell you though, there were days when I just wanted to sit on the couch – and you know what, once in a while that is exactly what I did. I don’t want to be a person who is neuoritc about going to the gym or what food they are eating. I want to enjoy my life and the includes the things I am doing AND the things I am eating. Food is just way too big a part of my life for me to act as though it doesn’t matter. Any person who has ever spent time with me knows I LOVE FOOD. That’s it. That’s the end of it. But now I see that loving food isn’t the enemy like I used to think – it’s loving food that DOES NOT HELP YOUR BODY FEEL BETTER OR WORK TO ITS POTENTIAL. I have so many things I want to do in my life and the thought of not being able to do them because of my health is something that I am not willing to accept.
Last year I came to the tough realization that my weight had gotten borderline out of control. What was once a few pounds here and there had added up and I was not the same person I had been a few years back. Now I don’t mean to sound melodramatic with that – but the fact is, there was never one year for me where I gained a bunch of weight. It was a gradual increase and that was something that was easy to overlook. Buy some looser shirts here, stock up on leggings there…it never truly effected me. I avoided a scale because I knew that seeing a number would make it too real. Then in January, I finally stepped on a scale (I curse and thank my roommate for buying one) and I was distraught by what I saw. I had never seen a number that high and I knew at that moment something had to be done. The first week of February I started working out at Kosama – a kickboxing/body transformation gym. I made a lot of progress with the help of their coaches and changed my diet to very limited complex carbs and focused on fruits/veggies and chicken. By June when I moved out to Portland I had lost 20 pounds. The move to Portland and then our trip to NJ set me back a bit and I ended up gaining back 5 of those 20 lbs, but I knew that was likely to happen and I was ready to get back on my game.
My goal was to hit 155 lbs by the time we went back home in October and I am so happy to say that I hit that goal 3 weeks early! (Making my total weight loss 35 lbs since February) Here is a picture of me a year ago when I first moved out to Arizona and a picture of me from today. I never in a million years thought I would be at the place where I was confident enough to post a picture like this – but this isn’t about me, this is about seeing that changes like this are able to happen. I know I needed some motivation before I started the Whole30 and I hope, if nothing else that this blog is able to do that for someone reading it. It takes work and I am not sitting here saying that it was always easy, because it wasn’t. But what makes continuing easy is knowing that I have made a huge impact on my future by bettering my health.
Don’t worry though, our journey isn’t over – R and I both are still working hard to get to our final goals. I plan on using the blog, as I mentioned previously, to continue sharing our recipes, successes and struggles. Even if no one reads this, the blog has helped me stay honest and that is something that I want to keep up.
So here’s to better health and knowing that if you want to make a change you can. Start with small steps and I PROMISE you will see the difference.