Well, today was Day 30 of my Whole30 Challenge ... and I made it! Compliant the whole way through. I didn't have the "magic" kick in until just this past week (extra energy & less severe headaches), which felt a bit discouraging - but the food was delicious and nutritious the whole way through, so it was worth the wait! Between the third and fourth week, I noticed my wedding ring was feeling looser and sliding around on my ring finger, and then the fourth and final week was when I finally noticed the most changes in how my clothes are fitting, and in the girth of my legs! They seem so much thinner.
I am feeling very excited to take my "after-photos," and step onto the scale, in the morning! I'm guessing that I'm back to the weight I was at when I met my lovely wife ... which makes me feel about 8 years younger, since I met her that long ago. Isn't it strange how so many of us tend to gain weight while in stable relationships? Then, there comes a time in said relationships when we realize we're just going to go on gaining like this indefinitely, or we can team up together to encourage each other to be more healthy and active again! I'm feeling very grateful to have come to the latter conclusion with my girl.
This coming month will be one of focused daily exercise for us, as we try to build on the habits we have been implementing of cooking healthy food for ourselves three times a day. Kristen's got a head start on walking/running 10,000+ steps every day for the past week or two, while I have just been trying to make it past 5,000 a day ... today is actually the very first day over 10,000 for me! So as February begins, I'm going to be aiming for 10,000 a day as well.
Tomorrow is the first day of my reintroduction phase, which is the day I reintroduce legumes & beans! I purchased some delicious hummus from Laziz at this morning's Winter Market at the Rio Grande Depot downtown, and I'm looking forward to having edamame as well, and perhaps a vegetarian chile for dinner. Then it's back to Whole30 compliance for two days, then on February 3rd I'll be reintroducing some dairy products ... yogurt, possibly cheese, and sour cream. After that, I'll probably reintroduce grains, but for most of the month I'll be eating Whole30 compliant except with the vegetarian recommendations (which include legumes and some dairy).
It has honestly been a major challenge for me to consume as much animal protein as I have been every day during this challenge. I typically eat a mostly vegetarian diet, and this way of eating is expensive for me, because I can only consume animal proteins that are as 'clean' (clear of antibiotics, added hormones, etc), grass-fed, organic, cage-free, free-range, and/or as ethically raised and killed as possible. I have seen too many documentaries about how animals are typically treated prior to slaughter in America, and I just can't bring myself to consume anything that unethically handled - to financially support that kind of behavior on the part of the companies that engage in those practices.
I do consider myself an omnivore ... I do truly enjoy a high-quality cut of steak once in a while, and even bacon ... but I just have a really hard time consuming meat (even the wide variety I've had this past month) every single day! So I am really looking forward to seeing if I can get to my target weight goal within the next few months by continuing some of what I've learned on this Whole30, and implementing a few other things that are going to be great for me personally. It's all about listening to your body! And I think the Whole30 has actually done a great job, for me, of helping me to get into that listening mode.
Thanks for following this journey with me! I'd love to hear about your health-related plans for this coming month (and year), as well!