Ready, Set, Launch: Whole30

whole30It feels strange – and liberating – to be writing again.  A dear friend I met in the blogging community (The Latchkey Mom) gave me some much-needed and well-timed advice: “Take your time and do what you need to heal. Your readers will still be here, I promise.”  So I have taken my sweet time in getting back to my favorite pastime.

Where do I begin?  In short, losing my dad has been difficult.  But watching my mom grieve has been heart-wrenching.  It’s worse than I ever imagined.  At the same time, I know we will get through this.  We have wonderful friends and a deep-rooted faith on our side.  Though I have to admit, my favorite quote from my mom in recent days has been:  “His death wasn’t a blessing.  EVERYTHING. DOES NOT. HAVE TO BE A BLESSING!”  Amen.  The best sermon I’ve heard all year.

Now, back to me…  Somewhere amongst the travel and the stress and the sadness and the loss, I lost control.  I pen a blog on clean eating for goodness sake and yet I feel compelled to write a confessional detailing the ridiculous amounts of junk I have shoveled (or poured) into my mouth over the past five weeks.  Eight chocolate chip cookies (in one sitting).  Bottles of wine (in one sitting).  Half a pizza (in one sitting).  Store-bought chips, crackers, bagels, and doughnuts.  Potato Skins.  What?  Fried chicken.  Foods I have sworn off for the sake of my health, have become temporary fixes for my aching heart.  Food (or drink) hasn’t fixed any of my grief – in case you’re wondering.

I initially made excuses for my [bra] cups overflowing and my jeans getting tighter.  It’s temporary.  This is grieving.  Tomorrow, I will make better choices.  Today marks 35 days since my dad has passed.  I have gained six pounds and am stuffing myself like a sausage into my clothing.  I should mention – I do not have a weight problem.  I get that.  But it’s not the number on the scale that has me as concerned as my inability to control my habitual overeating.  This behavior is not me and I want it to stop.

So, in the lyrics of Celine Dion:  A New Day has Come.

Sorry.  I couldn’t resist.

Today, I begin Whole30.  I’m referring to it as a wellness program that eliminates dairy, grains, legumes, sugar, and alcohol (gulp!) “to change habits, alter patterns, break unhealthy cravings, and create a new, healthy relationship with food.”  It is based on the book It Starts with Food, and in reading it, I’ve learned many people have experienced overall improvements in physical and mental health, increased energy, and weight loss as a result.  I am doing it solely as a reset.  My clothes fitting once again will be an added bonus.  This is my way of gaining back control of my body and my health – and practicing what I preach.

Over the next 30 days, I will be detailing the ups and downs of the program, meal planning, my favorite recipes, and the overall experience in hopes that it will inspire you to make positive changes in your life.

My favorite quote in the book and one I have posted for motivation during the next 30 days was written by someone who successfully completely the program:

“Here is what the Whole30 is.  It is life-changing.  It is a path to healing your insides.  It is about eating real food and learning that what you put into your body actually matters.  It is a test of the level of respect you have for this one body you were given.”

One more time…It is a test of the level of respect you have for this one body you were given.  Wow.  That’s powerful.

Cheers (with Kombucha) to the next 30 days.  Who’s with me?

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