A couple of weeks ago I wrote about doing a mini Whole30. Well, after 6 days of eating Whole30, I felt amazing and lost 3 pounds. Now, I know the official Whole30 rules emphasize not weighing yourself, but I was really curious how the Whole30 + macros combo would work out.
I did struggle a bit to get enough carbs and not eat too much fat and I had to bend the rules a little to make sure that I got the right amount of carbs. But again, this wasn't meant to be an official Whole30 (of which the rules are very clear and quite strict - with good reason) so I didn't worry too much about that.
How did I bend the rules? The biggest one was that I drank smoothies. That was the only way that I could make sure that I got enough carbohydrate into me without eating 20 pounds of potatoes everyday. My favorite smoothie is by far this Carrot Cake Smoothie from Beth @ Tasty Yummies. I modified it a bit, using just a tablespoon of almond butter instead of the cashews and subbed some collagen peptides for protein instead of the hemp seeds. Again, this was to decrease the fat a bit since I was sticking to my macros. My other favorite smoothie is very simple - banana, frozen cherries, almond milk. Sometimes I add spinach if I think I need more greens (note: everyone could always use more greens).
Other than that there were a few times when I ate something with a bit of added sugar. Specifically the time I had to go straight from work to dog obedience class, had a massive headache, and was starving. I had a chocolate and nut bar (the Costco version of a Kind Bar) in my purse, so I ate it.
I'm going to do this again. I'm not sure for how long, but definitely at least a week. The amazing part of this was that when I left for Hawaii, after just 6 days of Whole30ing, I felt so good that I didn't even want to eat anything that wasn't Whole30. After about 3 days of being on vacation (and working out in the heat), I started to get a little cranky due to not getting enough carbs, so I relaxed my rules a bit and had some gluten-free carbs, but mostly just relied on pineapple as my main carb source...
I know that a lot of people criticize the Whole30 for being too restrictive, but here are my thoughts on that:
- It's not meant to be a forever way of eating, it's meant to make you more aware of what food does to your body. People complain about having to cook all the time and not being able to eat out and not being able to eat x, y, or z. Look at it as a challenge to find new foods you like (you can literally eat anything in the produce and meat sections of the store). Also, is not being able to eat out easily for 30 days really the end of the world?
- I think everyone should do a strict Whole30 at least once (unless you have a history of disordered eating and this will trigger it for you). After that, use is as a tool to get back to a place of feeling good. Modify it a little bit to meet your needs (like drinking smoothies to get all the carbs if you need to).
- You can't knock it until you try it.
- It's not that hard. It requires some preparation and food awareness, but with just a little bit of planning and practice, you can do it.