Today is my first day free from Whole30! You’re not going to find any fancy recipes, or really even any food pretty food pictures here, because we didn’t try to get fancy with our cooking (except that one time with the Cream of Mushroom Casserole, but we will get to that…) We just wanted to survive.
January is maybe the busiest month of the year for our family, as I do two bridal shows, begin to really ramp up the season with proofs and meetings for brides, and Rudy has his second biggest job commitment in the form of a huge poultry show in Atlanta. Oh, and this year, we have a baby in the mix! Oh, and we launched a new company! OH, and we made our first trip to the ER!
To say that stress levels were at their maximum this January could be the biggest understatement of the year, and it’s just February! So, we survived with (thank God) Rudy’s cooking, and zero money spent on eating out for three weeks in January. We “splurged” on fajita meat from Rosie’s once on a super stressful day, but yay for Christmas gift cards!
So, here’s some of my biggest take-aways from the 30 Days.
Larabars are nasty.
Okay, my MIL just started Whole30 and she loves dates, and said she likes them. But really, I can’t stand them. I don’t know if I like dates or not, but now I assume I do not. And the KIND version, also nasty. I hear RX bars are even grosser. It’s like a really bad fruitcake, with a random nut every now and then. I had to spit out the lemon one, and tolerated the Key Lime, but had a terrible taste in my mouth afterwards. In other words, I was never desperate enough on Whole30 to eat them, because it wasn’t worth whatever calories are in them.
If you did Whole30 without potatoes, you are my hero.
We pretty much had varying meats, with a potato (sweet or regular) and a vegetable for every dinner. Sometimes we stuffed potatoes with eggs and meats for breakfast. The potatoes are pretty much what kept me having any type of energy. I’m positive if I would have done without the potatoes I could have lost 25 pounds.
Almonds, Cashews and Almond Butter became my friends.
Afternoon snack, or still hungry after finishing breakfast, and these were my go tos. I will admit that I had my “regular” Skippy Natural this morning and it tasted a little strange. I’m going to be investigating some other options for peanut butter, but dang, why do the healthy ones have to be so expensive?! I like almond butter fine, but 1. almond flakes lived in my teeth all of January, and that’s just not cute 2. you’re not going find me eating an almond butter and jelly sandwich, and sometimes you just need an good,old fashioned, PB&J.
“Fake” Spaghetti can go home, because it’s drunk.
I tried, really, to give veggie “noodles” a try. Butternut squash is too earthy. Sweet potatoes were too sweet. Zucchini noodles are far too watery. And pretty much every time they were a pile of mush, yet still crunched at some point. No. Noodles shouldn’t crunch. Every time I tried to eat “spaghetti” I could only think of this favorite movie scene:
If you suck at cooking…sorry, it’s gonna be hard.
Okay, so I really wanted to give some of these tasting looking recipes out on the interwebs a try. Once Rudy left, and I was going to have to fend for my own food, I thought I needed some casseroles that were quick and easy to heat up once already cooked. You know, like how you could eat off of a Stouffer’s lasagna for a week if you wanted to. So I decided first, on this Cream of Mushroom Casserole. It looks so good. And everything this girl makes makes me want to commit to a life of Paleo/Gluten Free! However, I am a terrible cook. I followed the instructions, I cooked the sauce, it smelled so good while baking. When it was done, it was a little runny, but I got past that. Then, about 6 bites in a bit something that was like the top of a jellyfish and I gagged. GAGGED. I saw about four more little jellies in my bowl and that was it. Whole thing in the trash. That made me totally bail on the broccoli casserole that was on the agenda next. Since Rudy’s been gone since last Thursday, I’ve survived on a lot of eggs, bacon and you guessed it… potatoes and veggies.
I missed the weirdest stuff. I don’t even really like ketchup, but I wanted it so bad. I just wanted a swath of BBQ sauce, or something for my chicken. Just one little square of chocolate. Can a girl get some soy sauce?! Sushi, give me sushi. Most days I don’t care about any of these things! I know that cravings are a huge part of the process, and it never got as intense as my donut cravings while pregnant, but man… that ketchup tho.
Expect for your coffee to taste bad. I mean unless you’re already 85 and drink it straight black. Okay, so this was obviously the biggest struggle for me, hence the blog title. The food I could get past. The wine, fine… I just went without it for 10 months while being pregnant anyways. But the coffee… man, I literally would go to sleep. and be excited to wake up because of my morning coffee. So plain, so predictable, and so wonderful. Especially in these cold winter months! I was really proud of my coffee habits before I started Whole30 too, drinking it only with three packets of Stevia.
On day three I was googling “Why isn’t Stevia allowed on Whole30”, pretty much convinced I was going to cheat in this area. I tried almond creamer, and blehhhh. I didn’t do creamer before, and the almond creamer just gave it a weird flavor, masking any coffee flavor I was wanting. After I ran out of the creamer with about 10 days left, I just decided to drink it plain ol’ black. It was better than with creamer for me, honestly.
But, on day 23, Rudy and I cracked and went to Connor’s because we hadn’t really “seen” each other, or really connected, or done anything with just the two of us, and he was leaving for 8 days… I’m sure the hardcore folk are thinking “that’s just an excuse”, but whatever. I had the best glass of wine ever, and that filet and garlic mash… mmmmm!! Drooling as we speak.
Anyways, I digressed. After cheating that day, I thought… well, let me just put one pack of Stevia in my coffee on Day 24 because “I mean I’m almost there…” and you know what—the Stevia tasted gross to me! Ahhh, black coffee is gross, almond coffee is gross, and now even my Stevia only coffee is gross?! WHOLE30 RUINED MY COFFEE!!! I was pissed. One of my favorite things and it was ruined. And so, I finished the rest of the time with my black coffee, and still don’t know how I drink my coffee now that I’m finished.
But you know what? Today I purchased my pre-baby size jeans.**
I lost ten pounds.
And, right in the thick of all my stress this month, I actually thought, “if I was eating crap right now, there’s no way I would be making it.”
And today, when “free” in Target, I still purchased Whole30 compliant foods on my own accord. I had a glass of wine with me while finishing up this blog, and it didn’t taste good, so I poured it out.
So, I guess it does kind of change you, regardless of how hard it is, how many nasty things you try to cook, or how much you hate it along the way. The truth is, if we can do it, you can do it, because I’m not going to lie we are some weak-minded souls when it comes to food. I’ll be happy to share any “tips”, but mostly I will commiserate with you!
But look, they send you this nifty banner in an email when you’re done! Don’t you feel accomplished?! 😉
**P.S.: Target is getting rid of Mossimo Jeans for.ev.er. and they are my most favorite. So, I’m warning you… if you love them to you better get to a Target ASAP because you can’t even get them online, and I was freaking out.
***P.S.S: No judgement when you see our family at Rosie’s tomorrow. It’s been a long time coming.