Whole30

What Matters Most | Whole30 Recap

Whole30 Recap

Here I am, sitting at my computer on Day 30, sipping my cup of Whole30-compliant coffee.

To be here, having completed my first Whole30 feels like a gift, you guys. And I know that probably sounds way too sappy and I get it. I mean I’m just one person out of the millions, probably, who have already done a first, second, and maybe third Whole30. But for me, I am just grateful to be here, in this moment.

I had an inkling when I first decided to do Whole30 back around Memorial Day that my life was going to change. That was probably because I bought/read every book on the subject and everywhere in them was talk about food freedom and how this was going to change my life. It was never really a secret to me that the root of my food issues and my biggest roadblock with living well and eating healthy was me. I knew that stress eating was a real issue in my life (teaching is stressful, you guys) and even though I knew ways to counteract that and knew that I needed to get more active, I just simply didn’t do it. I made excuses that my schedule was too busy and that I just simply wasn’t strong enough.

Dear Whole30, thank you for shutting me up about that last part.

My parents and I decided to do Whole30 together for several reasons. For starters, I live at home and I knew that I wouldn’t be able to do Whole30 on my own without huge amounts of temptation. For my Dad, it was a chance to see how a Whole30 way of eating could affect his high blood pressure and kidney function (he has chronic kidney disease due to a rare autoimmune disease). My mom was a little reluctant (and shell-shocked at every turn when I told her all the things we wouldn’t be able to have), but jumped in with us too. She also has high blood pressure and she actually ended up experiencing the most profound changes.

So how did we do?

For my Dad, he lost over ten pounds and has had lowered blood pressure of the past month. This past week, though, his doctor told him that his potassium numbers were a little high so we have now had to shift him to a low-potassium renal diet. My “pet peeve” with this is that there aren’t that many low-potassium recipes that are also Whole30/Paleo approved but we are trying to find a balance between getting his potassium back in check while also following what we now know and believe about nutrition (So many gluten/grain ingredients…*shudder*).

Like I said above, my mom probably had the most substantial changes of the three of us. Her blood pressure has been significantly lower, guys. Like, down to only taking one medication instead of two. Around the second week, she was experiencing very low blood pressure and her doctor began tweaking her medicines a bit. The fact that she has been able to completely stop taking one of her medications is pretty amazing to me! At first, my mom wasn’t sure how much of Whole30 we would carry over into “post-Whole30 life” but now that she has seen these changes, I think she is open to transitioning to a Paleo diet with me.

As for me, my biggest transformation has been my mindset and my outlook on wellness and nutrition as a whole. Like I shared in my halfway recap, I began doing yoga this month and joined a gym about halfway through. In fact, sometimes I found myself forgetting that Whole30 was wrapping up because I truly went into this not as a 30 day thing, but as a springboard for a total lifelong change. I knew that I wanted to try and follow a Paleo diet after Whole30 and that sentiment still holds true. With all that I have learned about food and nutrition through the Whole30 books and in Practical Paleo, how could I go back to the way things were?

I truly feel excited and hopeful for what the future holds! July was a great month!

Freedom

This week has felt like a sort of “farewell tour”, which I think is kind of funny. On Saturday, July 1st, my parents and I are embarking on our first Whole30. Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been eating different foods and going to certain fast food chains in order to have my favorites from there “one last time.”

Sure, I know that this is just thirty days.

And that saying “goodbye” to certain meals is kind of sad and a little dumb.

But I’m really not going into this month ahead with the mindset that it is truly just thirty days. It is my hope and prayer that it becomes forever.

My relationship and my attitude towards food has long needed an overhaul and I have literally prayed that this new journey will bring some major changes to my life. My plan right now is to shift over to a mostly Paleo diet once Whole30 is done. I first became interested in the Paleo lifestyle back in 2015, but I truly believe that God needed to change some things in my heart and in my life before I could fully commit to pursuing it.

I’ve seen God move in my life and in my heart in beautiful ways over the past four years and I’ve experienced far too much with Him in that time to think that He wouldn’t see me through this too.

This concept of “wellness” and “living well” isn’t just about health. I think that to truly be well, we have to feel it in our bones. Live it from the depths of our soul. You see, I’m not viewing this journey as strictly a food thing. Scripture tells us in 2 Corinthians 3:17 that “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

And I’m seeking freedom.

I’m seeking a relationship with my Maker unlike anything I’ve experienced before. I’ve tasted and seen of the kind of peace and joy that He provides in some of my darkest hours, but I am human. I fall short, and sometimes I return to a state of thinking that I can do it all. That I have some control.

I need to be consumed by God. I know that He desires my heart and that He delights over me with love and singing (Zep. 3:17), and it’s high time that I learn how to seek Him and fall that deeply in love with Him too.

For some, a Whole30 is just something trendy to do and something to post about on Instagram. I’m sure I’ll be doing that too, but I’m doing my best to see this as the starting point of a grand adventure. An adventure towards finding favor, friendship, and a deeper relationship with the Lord. Every journey begins with a single step, and I pray that this is mine.

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