Saturday, 3 November 2012

Introducing Teena, on her own Whole30 path

While starting the journey of my first Whole30 in March of this year, I counted days and posted pictures of some meals on Facebook. A week in I got a message from my cousin, Teena. She asked what I was doing, and knowing she has struggled with weight and health much of her life, I encouraged her to look at the program as outlined on the Whole9 page. After reviewing the program she decided she had nothing to lose (and maybe everything to gain?), so why not give it a try. I was so excited and proud of her for deciding to take the plunge. What followed was the first step in her journey back to health and a positive relationship with food. I find her story and continuing adventure so inspiring and real, I asked her to share with you. So without further ado, here's Teena.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Tips and Resources

Just a quick note today to share with you some awesome resources that you can find right here in St. John's, along with a few tips and tricks that I discovered last time around.

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Come out swinging - Prep Tips

We are just a day away from the next Whole30! Excited? I hope you are. I know I am, I'm super pumped and prepared. We've already had one guest post from Sandra the Skeptic, Nicole has some links to yummy recipes in her post, and I've given a few tips on preparedness. Onward and upward from here! I decided to pull the rest of my tips into a single post. Especially since Nicole has recruited just about everyone she knows for this Whole30 and I won't have to worry about struggling for blog topics. Enjoy the few ideas I have below.

More "Trick" than "Treat"

Today is All Hallows' Eve and Whole30 eve, interesting timing. It's another candy and treat filled season for most, and I am no exception. I've been good with refraining from the mini chocolate bars and the like (total count so far: one mini Snickers and and one Mars - both left me with a waxy, sugar taste in my mouth, 3 pkgs. of Rockets), but I have been "treating" myself more lately to foods I am not usually tempted by other times, knowing I'll be going thirty days without as of tomorrow. The psychological impact that has on me is really interesting and explains (but doesn't excuse) the Mexican restaurant dinner I had last night, the tortilla chips, dip and cheezies I have been indulging in since Saturday's Halloween party. It's not that I no longer enjoy those foods, but I am so much more aware of how they impact me. It's helping me decide what's worth it and what isn't  - and what constitutes a special occasion (leading me to ponder how all special occasions are wrapped up in less than healthy foods.)

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Round 2: Fight!

Here we are, just over a week to go until Round 2 of the Whole30. And this time, there's a whole pack of us! So keep your eyes open for some guest posts this month. Anyone interested in joining, just let us know! It's always easier with support and when you've declared your intentions to the world! In watching Nicole's Facebook wall, I've been truly inspired by all the friends that are joining us this time around. I open my heart and arms to you all. We may not be nutritionists or dietitians, nor are we even related to any doctors, but with our combined knowledge and passion for food and positive change, we can totally make a difference in our lives. And it was while reviewing these posts that I encountered a really good question that I would like to address in my next few posts. Someone said:
"I have little time for food prep... will that matter?"

Friday, 26 October 2012

Let's get this party started!

Ok, so here we are, days away from Whole30 round two. I am pretty excited about this next part of the journey, a number of people have indicated they are going to be Whole30ing along with us for the first time and we even have some guest bloggers lined up. It will be fun to see the Whole30 through their eyes and sharing the blogging load will mean less posts from us - a richer perspective for our readers. If there is anyone out there who is joining us for November and would be willing to write a post or two about it, please let me know. Those stories are always eye-opening and inspiring for sure!

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

And that's a Wrap!

Ever miss a friend's birthday? And a couple weeks later once you remember, you don't know if you should say anything? Yhe more time passes, the more awkward it becomes and you start thinking "maybe I'll just let it slide?". Well that's how I felt about this blog. I started writing immediately after the Whole30 but then... well... then I didn't finish and then I felt awkward, and then a little irritated by the Food Nazi who would not let me get away with it - lol! But that's what friends are for and that's the kind of support I signed up for when I agreed to all this. So without further adieu, here's my wrap up post. 

My thoughts immediately following the end of the Whole30: 

We MADE it! Yay! I suppose now is time for us to do all that soul searching and wrap up the blog with a lessons learned section. There is so much that I want to say so, please bear with me if my post gets unruly (which it will because it's taken me two months to write it).

First I want to give you all a little update. I apologize that the blog posting kind of petered off towards the end of the month. I could blame my still unfixed computer, but that wouldn't be quite true. Part of the reason I wasn't writing, was simply time. I've never been a journal person, I've never kept a diary, which could be part of the reason that my long term memory is so crappy. I barely remember things that happened when I was younger, but my cousin who always kept a diary, can tell me everything about a particular day, right down to what we were wearing. Yikes! I can't do that. Journalling has never been a part of my life and it is not a habit that I've cemented. 

Anyway, the last thing you heard was that I was heading to a wedding. Barry and I traveled to Halifax for 3 nights 4 days and had a great time! I stuck to the Whole30 very well. I interrogated every waiter, asked for a million substitutions, and ate a lot of steak... hahaha! It wasn't always easy, and I did threaten to cry once when Barry was thinking about ordering nachos, but I made it. The only things that kept me compliant were Barry's constant support and reminders and the crazy support that I got from my friends the day/night of the wedding. No one tried to convince me to try the dessert, no one said "aww c'mon, just one drink", I was given multiple mineral waters from the bar every time anyone went for a round. So, thanks everyone! You have all my love and my undying gratitude. 

I spent the rest of the weekend quizzing the waiters at every restaurant and stressing myself out about not knowing what kind of choices I would find. Either way, I always managed to find something, even if it wasn't what I thought I wanted. Overall, I survived the weekend away and stuck to my Whole30. Bad news? It totally broke my stride. When I came home I was counting down the days (only 2 but still) and dreaming of all the things I was going to eat once my Whole30 was over. I couldn't wait for it to be finished. I kept thinking about the microbrews that I missed out on and the desserts I wanted... Those last two days were the worst of the entire Whole30, I struggled with returning to "normal", how I would handle it, and taking a very truthful look inside to see what I was really feeling. I wasn't motivated or excited about the journey anymore and no amount of blog reading helped. I just couldn't get that motivation back. So that kind of fooled me up. In a way, I kind of look forward to doing another Whole30 in the future so I can have the full experience, because I felt like it kind of lost something in those last few days. I still ate according to "plan" but it just wasn't the same. 

But it's done right? Now what?

First, lets take a reading - how did I feel at the end of 30 days? Good news? I lost almost 12 pounds and a total of over 7 inches on my body. Bad news? Internally, I felt alright, but not as good as I expected to. I expected that I had lost a little weight, I wasn't feeling hungry, I was feeling satisfied. But I didn't think there was any miraculous change that I experienced. I still had a few bouts of IBS but I figured it was likely a reaction to dark leafy veggies. My hair and skin felt the same, my fingernails were still soft and bendy. My sleep didn't seem different, the only energy difference that I experienced was that I wasn't tired at 3pm. I just didn't see anything life changing. And I was disappointed. I over analyzed all the food choices I had made over the last 30 days, wondering if I had eaten something that would have caused a required restart of the 30 days. I blamed the trip. I just was expecting something bigger. At one point Nicole commented about how this 30 days was changing my whole life, and I remember thinking, "really? It's not so fantastic". So I ate. And I ate. And I ate. I managed to follow the 10 day reintroduction schedule for about 4 days. That's when I added in gluten grains. And the whole thing went to hell in a hand basket after that. I started to return to my old eating habits, I had takeout multiple times in a weekend, drank beer, and ate dessert. 

Lets skip the dirty part... 3 weeks later... I'm searching in my closet for fat pants, wishing I hadn't eaten all that food. I stepped on the scale I had only gained 3 pounds?!!?! What? If I only gained 3 pounds in 3 weeks, why did I long for the comfort of stretchy yoga pants. It made no sense...  Unless I had wheat belly! I was bloated and tired and generally felt kind of crappy. I could have been any number of things but I seemed to feel the worst when I ate wheat and I even had pain and IBS flare-ups. All symptoms of gluten issues. I don't know if I have a sensitivity, or what but I do know that wheat products are like poison to me. But because I went so far off the rails with my reintroduction schedule, I also can't be sure if it is only the wheat. Maybe it's the bad fats?  Maybe it's something else in my diet. But all I know is that I felt yucky but I didn't feel like this on the Whole30.  Even though at the end of the 30 days I said that I just felt alright, maybe I felt better than I realized? Maybe I felt great and just didn't know it? Because there certainly is quite a discrepancy between how I felt on the Whole30 and how I felt after 3 weeks of off-roading. So, I decided to cut out wheat and make better decisions about the food I was eating; try to return somewhat to a Whole30-ish form of nourishment. 

Skip ahead again a few weeks to the present day. I'm doing better with my food choices but not great. I've gained back about 6 pounds altogether. The scale has stopped moving and even though I don't crave wheat or grain products, I can't seem to work the internal switch that tells me to say no when they are in front of me. So I'm struggling. I need to work more on some things. I haven't unlearned some of my bad habits and I need to give myself time to work on them. I truly believe that every time I do a Whole30 I will learn something new, or make a change that I didn't think possible. Now that I know what to expect, I plan to do some extra things for my next Whole30 to prepare myself, my pantry, and my freezer. I know it was hard on Barry sometimes as the main cook in the household to accommodate my first Whole30 so I want to make it easier for him to accommodate my choice when I decide to do another Whole30. If anyone has any ideas/recipes please share! 

My first Whole30 was interesting to say the least and I did actually come away with a number of good habits. I'm completely off aspartame  I am not having sweetener in my coffee or tea or in any food. And I haven't replaced it with another form such as white refined in coffee or tea. I've been using honey when I cook and need a little something sweet and I've stuck mainly to dark chocolate when I have chocolate. But I still have trouble with cupcakes and muffins when they are available. I have totally eliminated soda pop too! And I was a huge Diet Pepsi drinker. Since the beginning of August I've had half a glass of Diet Pepsi and had such an immediate reaction to the aspartame, that I doubt I'll go back. My head started to pound within a half hour and I can only assume that it was the pop. Not to mention that it seemed exceptionally sweet to me. Now I stock my cupboards with carbonated water and throw in a little lemon or lime when I want a treat. I'm also drinking a lot more teas instead of coffee with nothing added. I found that I really enjoy cuddling up on the couch in the evening with Barry, a cup of Pumpkin Chai tea (from Davids Tea), and a good book. I still can't really get the hang of coconut milk. It's ok but not something I want in my coffee everyday, I have to say I'm enjoying the cream at the moment. 

So, I would say that my Whole30 was a success even for just the aspartame and Diet Pepsi. And I finally posted this wrap up, and now I can start thinking about and planning for the next Whole30, in November! 

Friday, 7 September 2012

Well, that flew by! What next?

First off, my apologies for not posting sooner. In the final days of the Whole30 we unexpectedly bought a house and are in the crazy process of selling ours. Blogging time became decluttering time.

But for the final paragraph in this chapter, one word would describe this Whole30 for me: success! At the end of the thirty days, I felt fantastic. My skin was dewy (hello healthy fats!), my sinus issues gone, I felt firmer, slimmer and completely energized. I had moments when I felt so great, I was tempted to try and go longer - why mess with a great thing?

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Final days of Whole30 #2

Four more days until this Whole30 is a wrap. It's been a good one, I have to say doing a challenge like this during a bountiful harvest time makes it pretty pleasant. Plates have been colorful and flavorful the last 26 days and I haven't experienced boredom with my meals yet. It will be interesting to see how my next Whole30 will differ - that's planned for January. My intention is to complete a Whole30 twice a year, just to give my system and myself a reset and reminder of how good it feels to eat so cleanly consistently. The effort it takes to complete a Whole30 is a way of consciously investing in my health.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Day 24: A Mini Vacation and a Wedding!

I'm going on a trip! Tomorrow I will be travelling to Halifax for a friend's wedding. I can't wait to see her walking down the aisle. And the party afterwards is going to be like a university reunion! We are then staying in Halifax until Tuesday. We plan on visiting the Greyhound Pets of Atlantic Canada (GPAC) kennel too. This is where Fury made a short layover on his way to our home and hearts. But GPAC is the organization that arranges to get the dogs from racetracks in the states and who is responsible for making sure they are in good health and then getting them adopted. Fury stayed there for about a week before he came to our home, but many other Greys have spent time there too. Right now they probably have a dozen or so dogs (I'm guessing) who are living at the kennel. Our plan is not to bring one home but just to travel out, see the kennel, meet some of the volunteers, maybe spend some money at the store and play with the greys that are currently living there. The whole 4 days are going to be exciting! But a little scary in trying to stay Whole30 compliant. Although I've got a few strategies...

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Day 22: Cookie? Maybe?

What a day. It's been a long one and I don't have enough energy to write much of a post. Overall it was a good day, no a great day! We celebrated the 2nd anniversary of the arrival of our pup, Fury, with a romp in the backyard. We finally have most of the fence built and we were able to take him out without his leash for the first time. He raced around, jumped all over us, and we got the chance to play too. He ran so hard around the yard that he tore up his front paws. Nothing serious just a surface wound. But he loved it, and now he is totally passed out. He'll probably sleep for the next three days straight.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Days 18, 19, 20 and 21: Try new things

Sorry for being out of touch the past few days. I did not slip-up, cheat, or go rogue, I just truly enjoyed my weekend at home, to the point that I didn't even think of writing anything. I also spent a fair bit of time working for some of the volunteer work that I do, and attending some meetings. The weekend just kind of got away from me, and yesterday too. Not to mention that this computer is crappy and old and irritating. I've been eating very well the past few days and have even tried a few new things. 

Monday, 20 August 2012

Vacationing, part 2

Fox Cove, Newfoundland

Day 20 is coming to a close and I'd be lying if I said this has been a walk in the park this time around. It is easier - I attribute that to the abundance of fresh, local vegetables available now that makes it easy to have colourful, tasty plates at every meal. However, Whole30ing while vacationing is a challenge: not for me are the "salty snacks" my family shares while watching the nightly movie; no thank you to refreshing ice cream after dinner; not indulging in a drizzle of honey or maple syrup over a pumpkin spice waffle at breakfast; no wine or beer to unwind after the kids finally pass out from their full days.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Vacation - the Whole30 my way

Twilight RetreatI have been conspicuously absent these last couple of days. Today we left for a five night vacation - we have rented a little heritage home in an outport village four and a half hours from a major city. I knew grocery options would be limited out here, so the last two days I have been frantically meal planning, grocery shopping and preparing. As Dallas and Melissa say, failing to prepare for your Whole30 is preparing to fail - and that would really be the case if I came out here without a game plan.

Day 17: An Early Veggie Harvest

My garden on the back patio
You may have picked up somewhere along the way on the fact that I'm a bit of a hobby gardener. It all started when I was a child. I grew up in a household that included both my parents, three siblings, and my grandparents. My grandmother is an avid gardener. She can plant anything and get it to grow: mail order seeds; shoots and clippings from a friend's garden; cuttings from the side of the road; plants that others were getting rid of; even a handful of grape seeds that were left in an ashtray for weeks. Believe it of not she has a greenhouse with gorgeous grape vines that produce perfect green and purple grapes from those ashtray seeds! Her talent is unbelievable! From the time I was little, she has spent her spring and summer days out in the garden, weeding tending to her plants. Her focus is mostly on flowers and shrubs these days with a little veggie garden, but I remember a time when half our backyard was a veggie garden. We had a non-stop supply of tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, currents, gooseberries, potatoes, carrots, turnips, raspberries, and onions. Every since I moved out on my own, I longed for a property where I could have a similar space; however, we lived in a number of apartments without access to land. So when we finally bought our first house, I was super excited about getting a garden going! But how to do that effectively in a subdivision, on a building lot the size of a good postage stamp, in a neighborhood that was built on the side of a hill composed completely of rock?

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Day 16: A Visit From the Sugar Monster and Why I Fought Back

Day 16 has been pretty good. Day 15 (yesterday) was not so good, although I didn't tell you about it last night because I wanted to focus on the good things, like celebrating my 15 days and looking at myself and all the changes that had occurred. I didn't want to talk about the bad things, I was cranky enough. But today, now that I'm back to normal, I can tell you about it and not dwell on it. So my day started out good, had a healthy breakfast, a yummy, lunch that I couldn't even completely finish, and then... around 3pm... it happened! Ever feel like you are being chased by a huge slice of cheesecake that you know you can't eat? That's what happened. The Sugar Monster paid me a visit! I felt horrible! I was cranky, I wanted something to eat but couldn't figure out what - other than something full of sugar. I wanted a muffin... or a piece of banana bread with chocolate chips... or anything! Just make this feeling go away!

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Day 15: The Halfway Mark

In celebration of the halfway point I've decided to re-visit the me from Whole30 Eve to see if there have been any changes.

Day 14: Two Whole Weeks!

Hey everyone! We've made it two whole weeks into the Whole30. We are almost half way there. I hope everyone is enjoying themselves, feeling better, sleeping better, losing weight, getting healthy. I know I am. Although it's time to celebrate, it looks like my hardrive is fried on my laptop, so I'm typing this on an antiquated computer. I did celebrate my 14 day success with a nice peppermint tea at Chapters (my favorite place in the world) with my book club girls. We actually met to choose a book this time! It's been a long day and it's late so here's a quick rundown of today's food and an interesting photo I found called "Food Marketing Translations" or "What That Really Means". Enjoy! Keep up the good work and thanks for all the support!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Happy half-way eve

Tomorrow will be day 15 of this Whole30, how awesome is that? To celebrate, I am hoping for good weather so I can bring the monkeys blueberry picking. I understand the barrens are positively bursting this year and although I am not a lover of picking them, there is nothing like the taste of a wild Newfoundland blueberry...nothing! In fact, the grandparents brought some freshly picked berries down a couple of nights ago and the the boys dove into them, cramming fistfuls into their mouths.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Goodnight Day 13

Well, we are closing in on two weeks of our Whole30 and I've got sleep on the brain again.

One of the nine factors referred to in the Whole9 is sleep. Getting the right amounts in the right fashion is integral to health and well-being. The right amounts are between 7 and 9 hours, apparently. I fall short of this most nights, but feel markedly better when I do punch seven good hours. One of my definite time wasters is my beloved iPad and iPhone. It never fails that I want to check "one more thing" before lights out, and before you know it I am on the fourth food blog and up well past my desired sleep time.

Day... er, what day is it?

See? The Whole30 is so awesome, that I totally forgot what day it is! I'm not on a countdown; not wishing that the 30 days were over so that I can go back to eating junk food. Wow, that's a pretty special feeling! There are temptations but overall I feel pretty comfortable in this new way of eating. Even drinking my coffee with coconut milk is getting easier.

I wasn't able to post all weekend due to technical difficulties, see realistic depiction to the left, so I'm going to try to give you a quick run down of what my weekend looked like...

Disclaimer: we are not nutritionists

Yesterday we received this comment on one of our earlier posts from Anonymous: "Shouldn't you be designated nutritionists if you are giving health/nutrition advice??? Just a thought and a concern for balanced, well educated, informed and research based information ...anybody it seems can create a blog but is it legit? Very concerned that you are giving advice based on pop culture reading rather than intensive study in the area of sound nutrition." 

Friday, 10 August 2012

Day 10: Finally Friday and a Question About Gum

Well, we've made it finally to the end of the week! Yay, to Nicole, Eileen, Ashley, myself and all those others out there who are now 1/3 of the way through the 30 days. And a big hurrah to Jaclyn who is actually on day 16 of 40! I'm actually really looking forward to the weekend to relax, run, and spend some time with friends! It's the first time I will see some of them since I started the Whole30. I'm feeling results: I feel more energetic; I'm sleeping better; my face seems a little clearer; my clothes fit better already; I'm proud of myself; and, I really believe in the Whole30 framework. I've bought in completely! It's exciting! I've tried so many new foods in the past 10 days, prepared the same foods in different ways, and found some really good foods that I may not have tried otherwise. But how do I share my new knowledge with my friends this weekend without causing a ruckus? I mean, not everyone wants to hear or is ready to hear that grains are forcing our bodies outside of their healthy functioning processes, sugars are killing us, and that dairy can cause an immune response. Not really party conversation...

Ode to zucchini

Where my spaghetti comes from...
For many years I was a pasta lover. Living in Toronto's Little Italy during graduate school eons ago, I became accustomed to first rate, handmade, rustic edged, silky pasta with bite. Fresh pesto made it sing, a good ragu made me swoon. Thus it was with a heavy heart I said goodbye to pasta when I left wheat behind last September. Honestly, since having kids we had reserved pasta meals for dinners after the kids had gone to bed, as neither of my boys liked it at all (apparently this is very rare, but I am not kidding when I say pasta was downright rejected by them each and every time we tried. It's a texture thing.)

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Day 9: Shush... I'm trying to listen

One of my main goals for this Whole30 is to finally be able to trust my body and the signals it is sending me. Given my eating habits and lifestyle, I was a sugar-burner (probably still am, but I'm transitioning). My body only knew how to burn sugar for energy. It had no idea that I had this vast resource of energy in the form of fat because it couldn't access the fat since it was so focused on the sugar. You may or may not know, that your body can only store a limited amount of sugar - enough for about 90 minutes of high intensity energy. Hence the reason that long distance runners eat those glucose packs after about 90 minutes. Not only are their own glucose stores empty by that time but they need an easily accessible source of energy to keep them going. Fat is harder to get to. If you keep pumping your body full of sugar, it will use sugar, because it's easier. Sugar is like the eager and willing first date, and fat is like the coy date who plays hard to get.

Day 8: What do you mean it's 11pm?

So, this is just a quick post for yesterday, Day 8. I will be writing another for today, Day 9 later this evening. I just didn't want to skip over Day 8 like it didn't exist, but it almost didn't the way the day just zoomed right by. I found myself thinking that I needed to write my post but when I looked at my clock it was 11pm!! Yikes! I needed to get to bed, I had fallen asleep on the couch watching tv with Barry. But here's just a quick recap of my food for the day. Stay tuned for Day 9 later.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Why I love fat

One of the hallmarks of any good Paleo or Primal meal is making sure a good dose of healthy fat forms part of what is on your plate. I know....whoa! Fat? Really? Yup, for real, people. A bit of a leap from cut all the fat as much as possible!! that has been screamed at us for the last twenty years. As I started exploring the Paleo and Primal frameworks, this actually appealed to me, because it is reflective of their mantra to eat real food. I have resisted the low-fat movement for years as a result of my belief that if you can't enjoy the real thing (butter, yogurt) then why bother?

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Finding Balance

Today my husband gave me the gift of a day off with the family. We went to a wonderful sandy beach an hour away - the kids had a blast and we did too. Food was simple, I didn't take pictures. I was Whole30 compliant and it wasn't an effort - as I mentioned before, there is no counting, weighing, logging, measuring involved.

Day 7: We CAN do it!

Well, here we are at the end of Day 7, what a good feeling! We are a full week into the Whole30! I can already say that some things have changed for me. First, I don't mind coconut milk in my coffee as long as I use big cans that mix up well. For a while I was using little cans and they didn't work. The milk was really runny and it had lumps; no wonder I didn't like it in my coffee. Now I'm back to using big cans and Barry whipped up a batch for me last night. It's going down OK. I can do this! Drinking my coffee without milk and sweetener, is. Not. Hard. Second, my relationship with food is already changing!

Monday, 6 August 2012

Sleep - or why I missed yesterday's post

A couple of weeks back, the Whole9 had a really simple equation on either their Facebook page or their website. It was, "In terms of priority (for optimal health), nutrition > sleep > exercise." So simple, yet it struck me that I really don't embody this. Too often I find myself trading sleep for "achieving:" getting stuff done the likely could wait until tomorrow or even later. I'm not the greatest relaxer in the world and I'd really like to become better at it. More than that though, in every book I have read on how the body works, it is stressed that adequate sleep is of paramount importance for optimal health. Particularly in books coming from the Paleo community: Robb Wolf's Paleo Solution really drove it home, as does Mark Sisson of Mark's Daily Apple

Day 6: Preparation and an Ouchie...

Tonight's post is going to be a short one. I'm typing with one hand (please excuse any grammatical errors) while the other sits in a bowl of cool water; its the only way I can get relief from the burning caused by cutting jalepenos without gloves. This happens every time! I can't believe that I don't learn. I always end up with my hands searing but I never put on gloves, but now I feel like banging my head off the wall until it gets through my thick skull...

Day 5: Preservatives and Caffeine Withdrawl

This morning was tough... I woke up with a raging headache and felt exactly the same as I would have if I had been stinking drunk last night. Which I wasn't, of course. But I felt sour, like I had been poisoned. I even texted Nicole for support. I feel like shit! Remind me why I'm doing this? I felt kind of bad yesterday, feel really bad today!

Her response?

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Gaining Control

I've always been one to question pretty much everything. It drove every math teacher I ever had mad, and I am sure my parents sometimes wished I had been a more compliant child. I really don't think it comes from a place of trying to be a contrarian, rather I just like to know facts and details prior to making a decision.

Day 4: Hot Heat

Today was a rather relaxing day. I awoke at around 10am, after falling asleep early last night. I took the pups out and gave them breakfast, then set about finding something for myself. I spent most of the day outside on the patio enjoying the heat and reading. I took a nice nap inside around 4:00. I did pretty good for food cravings today, no visits from the sugar monster and I didn't even feel bad when Barry and Peter ordered pizza for supper (although they ate it downstairs so as not to tempt me - thanks guys!). But I did have some issues craving something other than water to drink!

Friday, 3 August 2012

It's not so bad

I don't know if I am hitting my stride or have been lulled into a false sense of serenity, but today didn't seem as bad as yesterday. This despite the fact that I was at no less than two movies today (one in the theatre with big brother bear, one backyard showing for kids on our street) and was surrounded by chocolate and salty popcorn temptations at both.

Day 3: ...zzzz....

Day 3, and I'm still alive, albeit, pretty tired. No, exhausted might be a better word for it. Today presented some new challenges; I was out of the office today to take part in a strategic planning workshop for a not-for-profit group with which I volunteer. The agenda was delivered yesterday and the dreaded words were written right there... "nutrition breaks and lunch will be provided"... Oh crap! That means Tim Horton's coffee and muffins at morning break, soup and sandwiches at lunch, and pastries at afternoon break. Pastries!!! My major achilles heel item. I LOVE pastries! Ack!

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Haunted by the sugar demon

This morning began with me chopping dark orange chocolate for scones I was making for my oldest to bring as a hostess gift to a play date he was heading to this afternoon. It made me salivate - I adore chocolate.

Day 2: A Shopping Trip to the Organic Food Section

Day 2... feels like... any other day!

I started the day with a nice 4.4km run with two good friends. Ladies, I know you are reading. We actually made better time today than we ever have, we actually increased our pace today by almost a minute. We covered more distance in less time. So give yourselves a big pat on the back! It was a beautiful morning but it was hot: the sun was out; it was 16 degrees at 6am; and ,there was no wind. But we made it, we even ran up Glebe Street without stopping. Not that Newfoundland is very flat but this is a steep hill. And we all made it to the top, albeit not without a number of curses escaping our lips!

Speaking of cursing,

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Finding my groove

Day 1 started spectacularly by hiking Signal Hill with a friend. The trek isn't long, but it is uphill, with lots and lots of steps. I am coming to love morning exercise which completely shocks me, sleep has always won over voluntarily waking early for this girl. However, we are in the midst of one gorgeous summer and sun definitely makes a happier me. On top of that, I'm lucky to have some pretty spectacular girls in my life who share similar goals and meeting up with them makes early morning rises worth it.

Day 1: Goal Setting

So my first Whole30 has commenced. I have to say, it didn't really start with a bang, unless you count the sore neck and headache I had this morning that was completely unrelated to the Whole30 but that kept me home from work. So the day didn't really start until early afternoon when I finally managed to crawl out of my cave, aka bedroom. But all of that time in bed gave me plenty of time to think. In between cat naps and ice packs, I managed to download the Whole9 Whole30 Daily's self evaluation worksheet and I took the time to list some SMART goals for my Whole30. Wanna hear? Of course you do!

T'was the night before Whole30...

...and all through the house, not a creature was stirring except me* with my can of coconut milk to use in my coffee in the morning...

So, here goes right? It's Whole30 Eve and I'm home sipping my last glass of red wine for 30 whole days, thinking about coffee in the morning. I have a confession... but don't tell anyone... I'm a sweetener addict.*gasp* Sugar Twin being my drug of choice. I know, pure aspartame; but don't even think about giving me anything else.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Here we go!

Well, that sounds a whole lot more upbeat than I am feeling right now. I just said goodbye to the last square of dark chocolate I will have for a would be a miracle for me to welcome that moment with joy.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Not Your Typical "Diet"

"Diet" is such a loaded word in my world. It's heavy with expectation, riddled with disappointment. It implies restriction and sacrifice, meticulously tracking every crumb that enters the mouth. "Diet" means the search for rapid weight loss, regardless of the means: cabbage soup diet, juice diet, cleanses. The word certainly doesn't connote preparation of foods to love and savour for their taste. Diet also implies a transitory state, an "I'll try this for now" mindset. I resist using it, and when others ask "What diet are you on?" etc. I kind of wince inwardly. I've never been one for "diets" and think most of them are today's version of snake-oil, advertising a cure-all for all your ills if you follow their plan. I've been pretty convinced the only thing it will cure is the burn you feel from the money in your pocket, and that following their advice would be in the long run benign at best, detrimental at worst.

So how did I come to fall hook, line and sinker for the Primal or Paleo diets?

Sunday, 29 July 2012

And all that science-y stuff...

Now if I want to actually talk about weight loss, I have to go back to Gary Taubes. I'm sure that the Whole9's book "It Starts With Food" will talk about the same stuff, but I'm only on page 91... How is it that we think we are eating healthy when we aren't? How did we get not-thin in the first place? The Whole30 will switch my diet to focus on good whole foods, including good fats. Wait... doesn't fat make us fat? What does the science say?

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Confessions of a Food Nazi

I think a theme that is already emerging from this blog is the idea of a "continuum." There is no "end point" along this trajectory that is my relationship with food. I'm a food lover, foodie, food snob, epicurean - however you choose to refer to someone who derives the greatest pleasure from a stellar meal shared with family or friends around the table. It never was simply fuel for me, and I can't see ever getting to that point. However, I also try to embody the simple principle of "know better, do better" in all areas of my life, thus it is with the food choices I now make. And yes, although I do "know better," sometimes I choose to indulge in something that I know full and well isn't the healthiest choice - or a healthy choice at all.

But I am eating healthy Part II - So what is healthy?

Onward with the journey of exploration. So, if I'm not eating healthy now, how do I start? What is healthy? According to Melissa and Dallas, there are four criteria that must be met in order to determine if a food is healthy; "not three, not most...all" criteria.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

But I AM eating healthy...

Or at least I thought I was, until I read "Why we get fat and what to do about it" by Gary Taubes. Living in a perpetual state of hunger, trying to stay motivated to adhere to any number of low calorie diets, I was fed up (or not, if you take it literally) and couldn't figure out why none of these programs were working for me. Leaving a trail of unrealized goals and empty chip bags behind me,

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

What the heck is all this about?

Welcome to our blog! We are going to collaboratively use this space as a tool for reflection and motivation on our Whole30 journey. Because Nicole is taking the month of August off and won't see Leanne daily in the office, we needed a space to "meet and chat" about how we feel, cheer each other on and share tasty recipes that feature Whole30 compliant foods.

Some of you may be wondering what this Whole30 business is all about.