My biggest challenge has been figuring out how much to eat during a meal. Initially I was just eating more vegetables at my meals and not incorporating enough protein. This meant that I was STARVING by dinner time. Breakfast has consistently been 3 eggs with roasted potatoes of some sort (red, sweet, or a mix of both) and sometimes a piece of fruit. I have kept my coffee intake at 16 oz (which is down from the 24 oz I was drinking).
Parties. Dining out. Those were my biggest challenges during week 1. I had a work party, a Mother's Day taco feast (most of which was fine because I did the cooking), and Mother's Day brunch out. I made my mom a cheesecake, her favorite, for Mother's Day and REALLY REALLY wanted to eat a piece. I did not. However, I may make a cheesecake for myself during the reintroduction to diary week. :)
Honestly, it hasn't been too difficult to switch to this diet. I mean - yes there are definitely times that I would like to eat something that is out, but for the most part, it is fine. There are little things here and there that I am surprised with in regards to ingredient lists - sugar really is in everything, even if in small amounts. (Hello bacon, I'm looking at you.)
If you read the whole30 timeline, the first two weeks can be filled with a variety of withdrawal-like symptoms (e.g., headaches, feeling sluggish). I have not experienced any of this. I was anticipating that my workouts this month might be a little off from doing this but so far, so good. Perhaps I am wrong, but I am chalking this up to the fact that my diet pre-whole30 wasn't too terrible.
This has definitely solidified that my worst eating comes during the evening hours, after my kids go to bed. The 90 minutes from 8-9:30pm have come with the cravings. My body is definitely used to having a snack with my husband at this time. Typically we have popcorn, which is off limits this month (sad face). This is also the time when I will go to the cupboard and have a handful of chocolate chips, maybe a girl scout cookie or 2, oh and look at that box of cereal. I have been trying not to eat at all during this time. I have been mildly successful at this. If I do have a snack, I am not eating fruit; the idea being that fruit is an "approved" sugar source. I have been having a handful of nuts if I really can't take it.
Two of my staples for workouts, Nuun and Picky Bars, are not Whole30 approved. Typically I would eat a Picky Bar before a morning workout, or after an evening workout. My husband stopped at a natural foods store and got me some Rx Bars, some of which are Whole30 approved. I have only tried one so far and it was good. Very dense. Several types of Larabars are also Whole30 approved, however, I was looking for something that had a bit more protein.
I have not eaten anything prior to my morning workouts this month. This has gone fine, and I had two tough track workouts that I did first thing in the morning last week. I have swapped Nuun for plain water. I added some lemon juice to one of my waters to simulate the taste of Nuun lemonade.
I also used to have a scoop of plant protein powder in a smoothie for breakfast prior to Whole30.
I haven't felt bloated since starting this. I really haven't felt like I was a bloat machine beforehand, but I definitely can tell a difference between how my stomach "normally" felt and how it feels now. Also, my skin has already improved. I no longer have the painful, inflamed, cystic bumps along my jaw and neck that I had for like 6 months prior to this. (Side note: I quit taking the medications that I have been taking since January from my dermatologist on day 1 of Whole30.)
No beer. No cheesecake. :)
Really, the biggest drawback for me so far has been not being able to turn to my "go-to" foods in a pinch. Last Friday we were already running low on food in our house (not uncommon as we do our grocery shopping on Saturday) and typically we would either have a pizza or go out to eat. I stopped at Whole Foods to get a Whole30 approved rotisserie chicken (because I was NOT AWARE of what is all in a regular on) and was a little shocked when the cashier rang me up at $14.99. (Seriously rotisserie chickens are $5 at Costco). Our grocery bill for the most part has gone up a little bit, likely because I am consuming more meat than I was eating prior to Whole30, nothing drastic though.
I'm getting sick of eating eggs and potatoes for breakfast.