How to survive a Whole 30
I am currently attempting my third Whole 30. I say “attempt” because I have actually never completed one. However, I have completed three half Whole 30s as of today. I have been eating Paleo or mostly Paleo for a long time. I struggle giving up honey, maple syrup, and all the other good stuff that is allowed and considered “ok” on the Paleo diet, but not on a Whole 30. Can I complete a Whole 30? I am convinced, this time I can! Because you learn from mistakes. Today, I would like to share what I have learned during my several unsuccessful Whole 30 attempts.
Knowing what you can eat on the Whole 30
You will get hungry, you will get cravings. You are used to snacking and just grabbing convenience food. You will not make it through a whole 30 without knowing what is approved, what is not, and where you will allow yourself to deviate from the rules. Familiarize yourself with the staples, such as canned coconut milk, canned tomatoes, frozen veggies, meat and more meat, tons of nuts, coconut oil, avocados, lots of eggs. Have those items at the house at all times. Never run out. And always have some food prepared in the fridge for those emergency cravings, even if it’s hard boiled eggs.
Grocery shopping on the Whole 30
You cannot do a whole 30 without shopping on a regular basis. We made it through half whole 30s, and gave up in situations where we did not have food at the house. We hate grocery shopping and we don’t have a whole lot of time… thankfully we discovered Walmart Grocery, a pick up service for groceries. This really saved our whole 30 lives! Once a week, I order all the food online, reserve a time slot, and pick it up after work. This service is so great because it allows you to always buy what you need – and only what you need! Walking through isles of delicious smelling bread, tempting ice cream, and yummy yogurts while grabbing a bag of lettuce? Those days are over! I don’t even set foot into a grocery store anymore. Goodbye temptation, thank you Walmart. You can also try instacart, if Walmart Grocery is not available in your area.
Whole 30 Relationships
It is easier to get your family, significant other, or roommates on board. Don’t try and do this on your own if you don’t live on your own. Set rules beforehand. Make sure the other people involved help where they can, help prepping the food, and help cooking. This is going to be so much easier when you share the commitment.
During our last whole 30 attempt, we got really mad at each other. We don’t even remember why, but we know that we were very, very hangry. You have to avoid those situations by making sure you are always well fed. The whole 30 is not a diet in the traditional weight-loss sense, you can eat! Everything that is compliant, everything that is good for you, you can eat as much and as often as you like. So make sure you don’t get hangry in the first place. Having the grocery shopping issue under control (again, make it as convenient for you as you can) helps.
The right whole 30 tools
It is not just about the groceries. Make sure you have all the other tools that will make your daily food preparation and cooking easier. A crockpot is great to start a meal in the morning and have it ready for dinner. A julienne slicer will allow you to create zucchini noodles, which work great with any kind of compliant pasta sauce. An immersion blender is great for vegetable and potato soups. I use a small chopper to chop up nuts and raisins as a healthy topping for apple slices. A good blender is also recommended for the occasional smoothie treat. Good knives make prepping easier, too.