Day 7: Smiling through the pain

Okay, folks. Let’s talk about procrastination: I’m the expert in it.

So if you’re curious about why I jumped from the beginning post to day 7, refer to the previously mentioned fact.

This is not a journey for the faint of heart. If you’re an “everything in moderation” kinda guy/gal, this is not your cleanse. Whole 30 is a slash and burn of your dietary budget, leaving behind only the cleanest of the clean foods.

Is it easy? No. Would I say it’s super duper hard? Definitely not.

I’ll spare you the whole Melissa Hartwig melodramatic “Whole 30 is hard but it could be harder” speech, but just know that this is do-able. It doesn’t take intense mental strength. What it does take is a paradigm shift. Shifting our idea of “healthy” from “non-fat” and “light” alternatives to food that once had a life. If you asked me where all the food in my fridge and pantry came from, I could tell you. A child could read the ingredients list ease (maybe not xanthan gum, but give the kid a break).

It also takes a shift in thinking about “fast food.” Yes, it is about ten million times easier to drive through Mickey Ds or Chick Fil A, but you know what else is easy? Taking fifteen minutes to chop some veggies and sausage, and throwing it all in a pan. BAM. Dinner is served in about the same amount of time it’d take to drive to your restaurant of choice, wait in the drive thru, and drive back home.

I know I sound preachy, but I cannot tell you enough how much it drives me nuts for people to hold all these mental blocks that keep them from jumping in. If you want to succeed, you will succeed. If you want to fail, you will always find excuses to fail.

Anyway, here’s an update of how I’m feeling at this point in the program:

Days 1-3 were filled with headaches. All day long. They weren’t terribly painful, but they did endure all day which in and of itself is incredibly annoying. Considering I was as dependent on sugar as Buddy the Elf prior to starting, this came as no surprise.

Days 4-5: I was literally so crabby and tired. I think I almost murdered about four people (just kidding but not really).

Days 6-7: I’ve been relatively tired. Today I was especially bloated, and my face has been breaking out like crazy. I would like attribute both of these to hormones as well as my body detoxing. I’ve discovered ghee and compliant chorizo, and my life has been changed. As in, I may never go back to regular butter.

I was challenged today and experienced my first non-scale victory (NSV). I was required to attend a luncheon as the final exam for my Professional Competence class. I was anxious for the entire week, and even had dreams that I ordered a sandwich and ate the bread. Once I got there, I realized that the only thing I could order was their house salad with grilled chicken and oil and vinegar for the dressing. And while my professor ordered cheese plates as appetizers, and my neighbors ate some incredibly delicious looking food, I was satisfied with my plate. I got to enjoy conversation instead of stuffing my face with cheese and bread like I normally would. And of course there was dessert. And of course it looked amazing. But I abstained, and I realized that I wasn’t upset not eating dessert. In my mind, I knew that I wasn’t going to need a nap after my meal like normal. I wasn’t going to experience a sugar crash, and so I was happy.

And if that doesn’t indicate a dramatic change even this early in the program, I don’t know what will.

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