A Week into The Whole30

I’ve never considered myself to be an overweight guy.

Once upon a time, I was a collegiate athlete who rarely watched what he ate. But it made sense, right? Eat a lot, exercise it out on the field. Drink some beer, run it out in laps. So on and so forth.

Well, I can safely say that I have not been an active athlete for the past several years, and that little ‘rinse and repeat’ logic is no longer relevant. Aside from the beer belly that makes me look like I’m hauling around a 4-month pregnancy, it appears that my insides have also had enough.

Recently, I had my annual check-up. And to my surprise, my liver decided to skyrocket its enzymes. In layman’s terms- I have a fatty liver. These words alone were enough for my girlfriend to make an executive decision- for both of us- to go on a new diet health kick (she hates the D word).

You see, my girlfriend (let’s call her B) has always been on top of all the new health crazes; and for the past nearly six years, has been unsuccessful in convincing me to join her on any these endeavors. So, you understand now why she looked like a gloriously happy wide-eyed baby cub when I was advised to start eating better, for my liver’s sake.

Enter: The Whole30

The way this was sold to me, by the future Mrs. Stone, was that it’s all about “eating better foods”. Okay, fine. How hard could this be? We already don’t drink milk (only coconut milk/creamer in this household), we have fast food about five times per year, and we love our fruit. So, again, how hard could this be?

Well, folks, we are 11 days in (out of 30), and I am not sure how many more eggs (or spinach) I can chow. Here’s the [quick] deal: Every day, we wake up, and within one hour of batting our eyes open, we have to eat. From there, we have lunch and dinner, with no snacking in between. At every meal, we are proposed to have three essentials- protein, a lot of vegetables, and a good fat. Oh, and we are prohibited added sugars, alcohol, beans, dairy, and grains (NO GRAINS?! You’re talking to a guy who can devour a bear-sized pasta dish every night!). But, moving on.

I like spreadsheets, so I decided to create one that tracks what we have at each meal; as well as our weekly measurements (weight, waist, etc). So far, we’ve only had one weekly check-in, and I’m pleased to announce that I’m seeing the pounds and inches go down- I admit, I never thought I would care so much about these numbers. Thus, I’m inspired to share a small breakdown of the things I do and don’t like about this Whole30 thing, up to this point:

The Good Stuff: It may only be a week and a half, but already, I feel lighter, more energized, and I’ve noted some great indirect changes that I didn’t even see coming. For example, I tend to get headaches fairly often and, since we started, I’ve yet to take an ibuprofen (knock on wood). On the same note, it’s rare I never not wake up drenched in sweat (regardless of how cold we keep the thermostat), and maybe it’s just a happy coincidence, but I have been waking up nice and dry since Day 2. Some other pros have included seeing my preggo belly shrink from 4-months old to barely a month, and not feeling grotesquely full after each meal that later translates to a surefire food coma.

The Not-So-Good Stuff: I’m not a dessert guy, but I would be committing perjury if I said I didn’t like doughnuts- I’m fairly certain I’m addicted. Addicted. Doughnuts and Italian food. They are my heart’s desire, and The Whole30 has yanked me from them! The first few days I had some pretty major carb withdrawals. Even the fruit portions had to be cut to the size of a fist (A FIST?!). According to the people behind this idea, by the time 30 days is up, I should no longer be craving such ‘atrocities’- I don’t buy it. But, because this is really all I can complain about, I’m going to stick it out and see just how far I can get.

To make this process a little easier (and fun) for me, I think of it as a competition- yes, against myself- but a competition, nonetheless. Also, I should probably mention that while we’re on this diet…er, health kick, we haven’t mapped out a strict plan to exercise (that’s not to say we won’t), but we’re more concerned with the food aspect.

I plan to make continual updates on this journey, but for now, I’m sure this extensively long post is more than enough.

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