January is the time that everybody & their mother (literally, their moms) start trying to eat healthy again after the holidays. So many people make a resolution to lose weight, go to the gym, & be all around better again. But sadly, this month & the start of a new year don’t hold any more magic than other months or start dates. It doesn’t hold a cure all affect for working out, eating right, or fixing the problem a lot of us have with “balance”. I’ve tried eating healthy & sticking with it on January 1st before, & June 3rd, & October 5th. The truth is life is hard, & for some of us this struggle involves our bodies, eating, & exercising. For me, I’ve had to figure out what really works best for myself, my mindset, my routine, & my body. Conclusion: Whole30.
I first heard about Whole30 back in 2014 after it had just started becoming a thing. I had seen some visual results on Instagram about what it truly did to your body in just 30 days. I wasn’t feeling my best at the time, basically not wearing jeans & just sticking to leggings because they actually fit me comfortably if you know what I mean. I had never truly been on a “diet” before, I was only 21 & even though I had a larger body than most my entire life (read the story here) I had never really wanted to change it. My idea of eating healthy back then was eating salads everyday, twisted huh? But after seeing the before/after pictures of people who had actually done the Whole30 I was sold. I was shocked that you could more or less slim down your body that quickly without buying a program or having to workout or starve yourself, & it was all for F-R-E-E. I thought, 30 days is just four weeks & if I’m being real, a single week goes by so quickly, so how hard could it be to just spend four weeks of your life to get these pretty crazy results that could make you feel better about your health & yourself just by eating.
If you haven’t heard of Whole30 before, it’s basically a program or more so lifestyle choice to eat a certain way for 30 days with an encouraged amount of exercise. What can you eat? Any meat, vegetable, fruit, nut, & healthy oil & fats. What do you have to say no to? Sugars, grains, breads, dairy, alcohol, & processed foods. Basically, eat real food & feel real good. And ya know what? It works! In 2014, I did a Whole30 & lost 12lbs. Then I kept it going for the next three months & I believe ended up losing another 20. Back then I was taking daily outfit pictures (yes, daily!) for my Instagram & blog & being able to see the results from day to day, beginning to end, was pretty nuts! I finally felt good, & in my own opinion, I got tiny. But it was confusing to say the least.
Have you ever lost a significant amount of weight? It’s odd. People *cough *cough, men, would stare. Yeah, I’m talking about it. I had never had boys stare at me. Then I got thinner & they did. It made me feel so uncomfortable!!! Why didn’t they like me when I was thick? Oh, because it wasn’t 2017 yet, & people hadn’t started the curvy love movement! To say the least, being thinner literally made people turn heads, & I’m not the kind of girl who’s into that & it was weird attention to handle. Also, now I had no clue what my true size was! I had always pretty much been a size large, sometimes XL, because of my chest size. But now, I was stuck in this limbo in trying on different sizes of the same pieces at clothing stores because I always thought things needed to be bigger & I truly couldn’t tell what size “fit” me better. It was an identity crisis moment for sure.
Let’s fast forward now, to I don’t know when exactly, but basically just whenever I couldn’t balance the Whole30 lifestyle anymore. They say in the program that it’s not supposed to be a lifetime program, but that after the 30 days, it’s supposed to help you reevaluate your life & to figure out what works best for you. Which I’m glad because who could really live without eating donuts, pizza, or pasta for the rest of their lives?!? Not me. But guess what else I couldn’t do? I couldn’t figure out a true balance in eating healthy foods, & occasionally having non-healthy foods. I mean, I did, but only for a short while. And guess what happens when you start eating unhealthy again, at least for my personal body…the weight comes back! So then, eventually another Whole30 comes. And then bye-bye weight, but then hello donuts & milk in my coffee. And goodbye to healthy, & hello to Whole30 again. It became such a horrible cycle!
I’m not tearing down the Whole30 program by any means because it honestly works. When you’re on a Whole300, the first 10 days I would say are the hardest. You literally have dreams that you’re eating a pizza. Your cravings go crazy for ice-cream & bread at times when you’re not even hungry. It’s a trippy feeling for sure. But, it teaches you so much too. Did you know that there is sugar in literally everything? There is sugar in mayo, ranch dressing, spaghetti sauce, & so many more ridiculous things! Like, why? My favorite thing about the Whole30 program is that it taught me to read food labels, & to search for the foods that had only good things in them, & to my surprise, they’re out there! I also learned that you can survive without bread being in your house. Shocker, I know! And I learned, that whenever I was on the Whole30 program it was easy to say no to the bad foods, even at parties & events, because I just treated those types of food as if I was allergic to them & literally couldn’t have them, they just simply didn’t become an option to me. When I wasn’t “on” a Whole30 though, that was when I didn’t care about rules or bad foods which was difficult & hard. After having done the Whole30 program so many times I have still implemented many of it’s practices into how I cook/eat at home. I use healthy oils to cook, I make homemade ranch with coconut milk (it’s SO good), I eat natural fruit bars, & I basically only cook meat & veggies for lunches/dinners, that is, when I actually cook, lately it’s been a rare thing because eating out is so much easier!
The truth is, balancing everything in life is hard. And being the kind of person who has to struggle with weight, size, & eating habits sucks. Now, I know everyone struggles with this. I know people who I would call skinny have their own issues with their bodies. I know that a thinner person can be just as unhealthy because of what they eat which would result in a lack energy even if they don’t gain weight. I know that eating healthy can benefit everyone. So what am I trying to say here? Basically, I’m doing a Whole30, again.
I like my curvy body. I don’t mind that I’ve gone up 2 pant sizes in the last four years. I don’t mind being thick, & having a booty, & not being a single digit dress size. I truthfully don’t care what the number on the scale reads. I haven’t hidden myself away or stopped taking pictures or liked myself less because I’ve gotten rounder. But I do care about feeling good. I know that eating healthy is rejuvenating, & it gives life. It helps with better sleep habits, better moods, more energy, & yes, a slimmer body is a great bonus if I’m being honest. So yes, I’m doing a Whole30, again. And I’m doing it for myself. I’ll give myself grace if I fail, but I know I won’t fail this time around. I want to do it so I feel better. I want to do it because it’s actually not that hard to do once you’re in the mindset of doing it. The hardest part for me will be trying to balance healthy eating versus non-healthy eating habits once I’ve completed it, which is always my struggle. This time though, I’m hoping to truly figure out what works for me after I begin by cutting all the bad out.
Hey there Monday, let’s start a Whole30, again. (Well, let’s start tomorrow actually, because there are some biscuits in the fridge that need to me made, & I hate wasting food!).
Be encouraged today to love yourself for who you are, to accept the things you can’t change no matter how hard you wish you could, like not wanting to be a person who has to watch what they eat, & to knowing it’s okay to make changes to help better your life, health, & outlook on the day to day. You’re great, I’m great, & life is great when we admit our struggles, & figure out a way to face them head on together.
– abbey kay
*brought to you by a girl who loves herself, but is okay with making changes to better herself too