Whole 30 officially ended for Joel and I on June 29th, and at this point we’ve reintroduced pretty much everything (last night we had a fire and I had the best s’more of my life). I haven’t eaten any legumes yet, but that is because I don’t actually eat them all too frequently anyway.
What I learned about myself:
Everyone kept asking how I felt while doing whole 30. I honestly didn’t notice much difference from my normal life. That may be because I’m not the most in tune with my body, who knows?
But here’s what I’ve learned since whole 30 ended:
- I love dairy but it doesn’t always love me. I need to choose wisely how and when I consume cheese, milk, etc.
- Eggs for breakfast and salad for lunch are generally a great fit for me.
- Accountability is huge! Having Joel on board was awesome, and at the same time my sister and another friend from church were doing Whole 30 as well. It’s nice to have a real life community to share recipes and encouragement.
- I have an all or nothing personality. I didn’t have any sugar for 30 days, and once it was reintroduced I ate 4 almond joy bars in one sitting. I need to pray and work on self-control!
What I’ll keep doing:
The prep work for Whole 30 often felt all-consuming, but there are certain parts of it that just feel right. Here’s what I plan to incorporate into my lifestyle:
- Making mayo from scratch. Maybe not all the time, but when I know I’m going to be making a mayo heavy dish like potato salad, I’ll definitely make from scratch.
- Buying avocado oil. And making my own salad dressing with it. I’d never tried avocado oil before, but now that I have, I like it!
- Snacking on nuts. Pistachios in particular bring on all sorts of happy nostalgia of family snacks at my aunt’s house, and they are so much better than other crap I could be putting in my body.
- Reading labels. It’s crazy what all is in our food, and as much as possible, I want to understand what exactly I’m putting in my body.
Honestly most of my favorite recipes were just slightly adapted recipes that we eat anyway. A Crock-pot Roast with clean ingredients, well-flavored burgers minus the bun, potato salad, etc. The most standout recipe in my opinion was the Salmon Sweet Potato Noodle Bowl (Joel doesn’t love coconut milk so this wasn’t his favorite but I loved it and the noodles were even better the next day). And of course the BBQ sauce that allowed all our summer grilling dreams to come true.
As for my coffee, it took a lot of trial and error to determine that I like almond milk, cinnamon and turmeric when cream and sugar aren’t allowed. I started with bulletproof coffee but after a few days the coconut oil just sat too heavy for me and I couldn’t stomach it.
While doing whole 30 I was counting down the days until it was over, but now I’m already finding myself planning ahead to January and trying again in a different season. I’m imaging finding some friends (I don’t think I can convince Joel to do this again, especially since he’s discovered a sensitivity to eggs during this process) and doing a weekly soup exchange. Add in crockpot meals and my favorite comfort food, Shepherd’s Pie, and I think I could thrive in winter. Yum!
Due to the reality of our food budget (hello eating from the pantry month, trying to make up for the expense of Whole 30) it’s likely I won’t be so strict on certain aspects going forward. Nitrate and sugar free bacon does not exist in my rural town- I’ll opt for the nitrate free. And I’m not confident I’ll make clarified butter again, I might just compromise. But the general concept of a clean eating/elimination diet? I’m in! And I absolutely think that the trial and error (which were sometimes expensive errors) of this first run of Whole 30 will absolutely help me to be a smarter shopper when it comes time for round 2.