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I’m a Grazer

“MOOOOOO”

Yep- that’s me. I graze just like cows do.

About 5 years ago, pre Whole 30 days, I read an article that talked about eating throughout the day vs. eating 3 meals a day. Something clicked in me that day and I have pretty much done that ever since. I have many friends that laugh at me about always having food with me. It’s true! Now that I’m a grazer, I can’t undo it!

I pretty much eat every 1.5-2 hours without fail. When I was strictly a Grad student and wasn’t working {beyond the work of being a GRAD STUDENT} it was pretty easy. I mean there I was AT HOME and could just walk in the kitchen every few hours and grab something to eat. But being a working woman again has made it challenging. Therefore, planning ahead is ESSENTIAL for me.

If you saw how full my lunch box is on any given day you would probably laugh.

Today’s Whole 30 approved grazing is as follows:

1- strawberries

2- banana

3- apple (Fuji baby!!! love those)

4- raisins

5- 2 pieces of turkey breast lunch meat

6- Avacado. already peeled, cut in half and sprinkled with pepper

7- Larabar. (that’s for mid afternoon… save the best for last, right?)

8- Peaches. (store bought and prepackaged. Probably not the best option but I buy light syrup and I drain it. Sure i’m getting SOME sugar, but not a ton)

9- cashews

That should allow me to survive until I can get home and have a salad at 4:30. That salad will suffice til I can eat dinner!

I don’t eat after 7 pm. Unless I cut up an apple or eat a small of raisins.

So ya see- I’m a grazer. When I attempted this way of eating years ago I instantly dropped some pounds. I am currently not using this way of eating to lose weight, but it does help me to maintain. And frankly, at this point, I wouldn’t know how to do it any other way.

If I DO get a weird stomach cramp or pain I can narrow it down easily and figure out the culprit. Thankfully, when I eat clean like this that doesn’t happen very often!

Thanks for following the journey,

Cara Roxanne

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Whole FLIPPIN’ 30

Ya’ll.

I’m doing it. again.

You read that right.

I did amazing the first time. I mean not really, but in hindsight that’s how I remember it. But the truth is it was horrible. I hated it. BUT…

For those 30 days I had NO stomach issues. Zilch. Nada. Not even with all those salads. I mean come on, between the salad and fruit you would assume I never left the bathroom, but I didn’t. I felt good. I slept good. I WAS good.

Well– over the past month my stomach issues have started creeping back up. I mean I had some really good take aways from the Whole 30  and I have applied those, but overall I am back to eating how I normally eat. Which is pretty good. And pretty healthy. And pretty full of GLUTEN.

I think that’s the culprit. So let me clarify. I am doing the WHOLE 30 BC (I do a lot of things BC… that means “By Cara”) This Whole 30 I will allow myself a probiotic yogurt every other day. I honestly believe that helps my stomach and I don’t know of any adverse affects I have had from it. So I am keeping that.

Also I am allowing myself a FEW (still undecided on what exactly) gluten free products. That’s so NOT the way to Whole 30 it by the book, but again this is BC. So….

No cheese.

No sugar. (other than a very VERY rare case like being somewhere and all that’s offered is cookies and i’m starving. And even then it is ONE.)

No milk no icecream= no problem. I don’t like either.

No GLUTEN! (no bread no grains no oats)

No corn (that kills my stomach… that means no movies. I can’t see a movie without popcorn)

NO COMPLAINING! HAHAHAHAHAHA! Just kidding.

Maybe this will help me decide once and for all if it’s gluten. Sigh.

Here we flippin’ go again!

whole30

I have no clue why you would want to follow this journey but thank you,

Cara Roxanne

P.S. The only reason there is a HEART around the word WHOLE 30 is because I couldn’t find one with the NO sign on it.

It’s my last week of Whole 30! 

Can I get a hallelujah??

Can I get an Amen?

I am ALMOST there.

*Insert Excited Face from favorite movie*

excitedface

I made it. I have shared pretty much every interesting and new recipe I tried. Here is how I survived…

I had 2 cordial cherries the day before I started. {Don’t judge me- it was cordial cherries or death} My point is– I didn’t follow it 100% the way you are supposed to. I did excellent 99.2% of the time. I may have had a few accidental rule breaks at restaurants but those I cannot control. I did what I was supposed to to the best of my ability. Except the cordial cherries. Oh and that one Dr Pepper. I don’t even drink cokes BUT I had a migraine. It would not go away and I know that for some reason coke helps. I didn’t drink it all though… I PROMISE! My point– do what you can and don’t freak out if you mess up. Move on.

I pretty much cooked what I normally would cook only I modified mine somehow. I’ve said this before but just do what you would normally do. Grill the burgers, make the spaghetti, make the tacos… just use lettuce instead of noodles, or forgo anything but the spaghetti sauce and meatballs. It won’t kill you. It was pretty easy.

I ate lots of snacks! Almonds, pistachios, apples, unsweetened applesauce, lunch meat rolled up… HAVE SNACKS! That’s the HARD part! You gotta eat and if you don’t have a snack handy you will break.

Plan ahead. If you don’t plan ahead then forget it. You can’t just hop in the car for a 3 hour drive and not have an apple in your purse. Or some almonds handy. Whatever it is you gotta be ready for it.

I didn’t give it much thought. What I mean is– I didn’t stew over whether or not to try the Whole 30 for some crazy amount of time. I made up my mind I was going to do it and started it the first day I was home from vacation. Done. Just do it! I jumped in before I went to the store and had bought all I needed. JUST DO IT! If I had spent time deciding when to start it there would have been a MILLION reasons to put it off.

“I can’t start next Monday because we are having dinner with friends that night”

“Can’t start tomorrow because i’m the one in charge of bringing muffins for brunch”

The EXCUSES will kill you. Just. Do. It.

Or don’t.

I don’t know that I lost any weight. If you are wanting to try the Whole 30 to lose weight then get on Weight Watchers. This is NOT about that. Now, that being said, I have read of lots of women who lost weight and may I say “YOU GO GIRL!!!” but for me– I already eat relatively healthy so there wasn’t a MAJOR change here except giving up dairy. {As I type this my mouth is watering– come on Sunday!! I am gonna eat a whole tub of yogurt} What I DID notice was my stomach was not messed up in the evenings as usual. I had more regular bowel movements. [TMI- but that’s ok..right?!?] I never felt “stuffed”, yet I always felt satisfied. [I’m using past tense as if I don’t have 4 more days…]

It’s worth it. Give it a shot. Or don’t? Do what works for YOU! I’m here if you need advice or tips or encouragement. I will do it again one day. But it will be a LONG time from now…

For now,

Roxy

Whole 30 6-11… I’m still on the bandwagon!

Playing catch up, y’all!!!

So here is the deal… it’s going pretty darn good. I mean don’t get me wrong I am not loving every moment of it, BUT, i’m still going strong.

I was so excited to write about my experience!! I felt like this would help me have more accountability and also give me something to look forward to. But as it turns out, life gets busy and as usual, my writing gets fewer and farther between. I will try and catch you up to speed!

Here’s the deal…Breakfast every single day is eggs/bacon/sausage in some capacity. Sometimes its a boiled egg, sometimes its a fried egg, but you get the idea. Eggs every morning!

Lunch: Pretty much without fail it’s a salad or tuna. There isn’t a lot of variation. But i’m okay with that. Before the Whole 30 I pretty much ate the same lunch every day. [Breakfast is somewhat different because typically i would have eggs and bacon the weekends and usually just oatmeal in the morning. ]

Dinner: This is where things get creative. As you will see below, I have to use lettuce instead of grain. So, when we make burgers- I put 2 pieces of lettuce on mine instead of a bun. When I make spaghetti, I use lettuce instead of noodles. Dinner hasn’t been too difficult, honestly. I use the crockpot a lot under normal circumstances and I have been doing that throughout this experience as well. Over the past week we have had:

Spaghetti

Chicken and potatoes in the crockpot

Roast, potatoes and carrots in the crockpot

Burgers

Grilled porkchops and potatoes (no butter… I know, i know…that part is tough)

Grilled chicken salads

Notice the “Just Mayo” above. That is paleo friendly and it works for the whole 30. I have used this instead of regular mayo anytime I need it for tuna or whatever! Super yummy, more expensive, but you honestly cannot taste the difference at ALL!

And the potatoes– look yummy, right? I used salt and pepper, olive oil, and threw them in the oven on 400 for 30 minutes. DELISH!! Now my spaghetti… I found all of these Whole 30 compliant recipes but i’m gonna be real here. I used regular, sugar free, spaghetti sauce from a can. I work, I have a family, and I have done DANG good on this thing… i’m not making my own. Sorry! SO, technically I screwed up but I ain’t even sweating it! It was yummy and I didn’t have the noodles so… I’m calling this another successful dinner.

Take aways:

I miss Stevia in my hot tea. I drink a cup every evening while I watch tv and I miss it. I am still not used to the bitter taste of tea without it.

Black coffee isn’t terrible… but I miss creamer!

Olive and vinegar as a dressing is amazing! I may never buy dressing again.

I can’t tell a difference in anything when I substitute coconut oil. It’s expensive but this may be one of the take aways I keep using longer after these 30 days are up.

My husband has no interest in participating in this challenge… EVER! 🙂 However, everything I have made that was strictly Whole 30, he has loved.

For the rest of the week I will repeat things I have made before. The tacos were amazing and you can find that recipe here and you can read that post here.  I enjoyed the sausage and shrimp dinner that I made previously. (Check that out by clicking here. ) I love tilapia and we haven’t had that in a while so I will probably bake that in the next few days. It’s quick and easy and the ONLY thing that will be different  I won’t be adding butter to my potatoes. 🙂 When I only have to make a minor change that makes me SUPER happy!!!

Worst part– snacks! I am tired of fruit. Isn’t that sad? I will get over it but I could so go for a bowl of popcorn right now.

19 days left! I CAN do this. And more importantly I WILL do this!

For now,

Roxy

Whole 30…Day’s 4 and 5

I could not be more over this.

I didn’t have the energy or want-to to blog about my experience on these days. I have found a few bloggers who [with much enthusiasm] write about their experience. I wish I could be like them. I’m already justifying my reasons for quitting… trying to stay strong!

Okay– it goes like this.

Both days for breakfast: eggs. Eggs eggs eggs. I’m so sick of eggs. I also had bacon and fruit.

Lunch: salad. Salad salad salad! I don’t have time for anything else. So salad it is. {I really do love salads…i’m just tired of them}

Dinner: Day 4 we went to P.F.Changs. I had one my research before hand and knew that I would consume SOME gluten if I got the lettuce wraps. BUT I also knew that I could avoid the sauce and ask for “light soy” and I would be better than not. So– I did it. I ate the lettuce wraps which were DELICIOUS and I don’t even feel about it.

Dinner Day 5: This was pretty dang amazing as well!!! I found the recipe on Pinterest and gave it a whirl. They were so good. My husband (who is so anti any kind of diet when you can’t eat whatever you want) genuinely loved them and asked me to make them again. Check out the recipe here.

dinner

They turned out great.

Snacks both days: almonds, scoops of almond butter, carrots, fruit, raisins

Take away’s:

  1. For me, it’s not dairy that is the problem. I know this. I need my yogurt!!
  2. It probably is gluten. Gluten is probably what makes my stomach flair up.
  3. I would rather apply the principles of the Whole 30 to every day life in moderation. Meaning- avoid peanuts and gluten. Cut back on dairy. Avoid sugar as much as possible. Use coconut oil all the time for cooking. This makes so much more sense to me than going 30 days without any of this stuff and then going back to the same old habits. [I understand that is not the plan of Whole 30, but let’s face it– it happens]

If I make it 2 more days i’ll be shocked!

I’m trying here…

Whole 30 Day 2… I can do it!

Today is Day 2 of my Whole 30 experience. I can do this. Right? {No-I am literally asking for encouragement right now.}

I mentioned yesterday that I have stomach issues. Hence the whole reason I am doing the Whole 30. There are times my stomach sounds as if there is an alien growing inside of me. (I have actually been asked if there was an alien growing inside of me by someone who heard my stomach. Why yes, kind sir. I am growing an alien inside of me. I cannot grow children in my womb but I can grow an alien in my stomach.) But for real- it’s bad. I am hoping that throughout this process of 30 days eating only Whole foods that I can figure out what makes my stomach crazy.

I know very little about the Whole 30.

I didn’t take the time to read stories about the Whole 30. I strictly googled “what can I eat on the Whole 30” and “What can I not eat on the Whole 30”. I don’t care why it came about. I don’t want to read about what refined-processed-partially hydrogenated- anything does to my body. I know it ain’t good. That’s not what this about for me. I am not trying to turn organic. I am trying to create a sense of normalcy for my intestines, stomach, and bowels.

So let’s say that you stumbled upon this blog and feel like me. You just really don’t care about why this is a good diet and all of the wonderful benefits… you just either want to try it for a quick, short lived fix on losing some pounds, or you are just a glutton for punishment and wanna give it a whirl… here is what you need to know.

  1. You can’t have peanuts or peanut butter. I know, right? But you can have other nuts. They say they are “tree nuts” but really just keep in mind you can have the expensive nuts. Pistachios, almonds, etc.
  2. You can eat a lot of meat and eggs. Roast, steak, pork chop, chicken, sausage, shrimp, fish… you name it you can eat. Lots of eggs! That part I do actually enjoy. I like starting my day with eggs and bacon.
  3. You cannot have dairy. Even yogurt with billions of live probiotics. You cannot have it. Almond milk only if it is unsweetened. No cheese.
  4. You can have potatoes! Bake them, boil them, slice them up and bake them. Just don’t add butter or sour cream and be careful on the ketchup (it can have sugar added). So eat the heck out of some potatoes. #carbs
  5. That brings me to the saddest part-=– no sugar. Seriously. NO. SUGAR. I’ll just leave that there. Basically you cannot have anything that I haven’t already mentioned.

Keep this in mind. For snacks you can have tons of fruit, unsweetened applesauce, nuts, and almond butter. And really that is it. But you can make a combination of those. I know I know… it sounds crazy. And maybe it’s because i’m a tad cranky. This is why I should have done more research but I didn’t want to- so I didn’t. I’ll keep going. You keep reading.

Breakfast: 2 fried eggs and 2 pieces of sausage. 3 cups of coffee.

Lunch: Big salad!! lots of spinach, cherry tomatoes, celery, onion, chicken lunch meat (organic, natural, and on sale).

Dinner: Big ol’ juicy steak with all Whole 30 approved spices. Mushrooms sauteed in coconut oil and olive oil. Red boiled potatoes with salt and pepper.

Snacks: Boiled egg. 2 packs of raisins. 1 scoop of Almond butter. Handful of pistachios.

Take away’s from today:

I didn’t miss the butter and sour cream on my potatoes. I craved caffeine more than I think I ever have. I don’t typically drink cokes like ever yet today all I could think about was Dr. Pepper. I assume this is detox? I have 4 boxes in my freezer of cherry cordials. They were supposed to last me until March. I’m the only one in the house that eats them and that makes me happy! 🙂 However– i’m thinking once this 30 days is over I may just eat them all in one sitting.

I’m surviving… but i’m dang sure not thriving. #ineedsugar

 

 

Whole 30 and the Whole ugly truth

Today was Day 1 of the Whole 30.

I could be super positive and tell you it was so amazing and that I feel great. I mean I could tell you that… but I won’t. Because that’s a lie. And if it’s not your New Years Resolution to lie less, than it should be.

Today has been interesting to say the least. 

  1. I realized that drinking black coffee is going to be rough
  2. I’m still messed up over how much I spent at Kroger yesterday
  3. I need a bite of something sweet after dinner
  4. This is not glamorous
  5. I’ve spent a good bit of time in the bathroom (TMI, y’all.)

Okay so here goes… this is my story.

I have stomach issues. I have a stomach ulcer. There are literally days when I am going into a meeting or somewhere quiet and I pray beforehand that my stomach will not make “any of those weird noises” during the meeting. It sounds like my stomach is growling or like I am about to crap my pants. There really isn’t anything else it could be. It’s so bad! Anyway, so I have stomach issues. Tada!

whole30

Over the Christmas break my husband, daughter, and myself drove to South Carolina to see my sister and her family. My sister is a health nut. (I mean that in the nicest way possible…seriously.) She eats organic, has her babies with midwives in her home, and is a saint. She prepares meals every single day using nothing processed. She buys the good meat (not the frozen bag kind). She has a fridge and pantry full of yummy, healthy, choices to eat, and I am totally envious. She’s also a personal trainer. Bottom line- I stand in awe of her. She eats well, she feeds her family well, and she’s fit. She has tried to convince me before that I needed to try the Whole 30. I attempted it about a year ago for 4 hours. Those were the worst 4 hours of my life. I wasn’t prepared, I had no clue what I was doing and I really was just doing it to make my sister proud. I failed. This trip the Whole 30 came up and I listened to what she had to say. I saw the validity in doing the Whole 30 {legit not half-a%%} and I began to understand that it could be a way for me to figure out my tummy issues. So I jumped in. Signed up. Even added a Pinterest board titled “Whole 30”. I-AM-LEGIT.

<DISCLAIMER>

I eat healthy. My typical day is oatmeal and a banana for breakfast, granola bar around 10, 2 scoops of peanut butter at noon, salad around 2, tuna around 4, something grilled and a veggie around 6 and nothing to eat or drink after 7. I mean come on- that’s not bad…right? Oh yea… lots of coffee for breakfast, no cokes throughout the day, and something sweet to eat after dinner.

My trip to Kroger was crazy. After I got all the veggies and meat that I needed, I went on a hunt for Coconut Oil and Almond Butter. (Apparently these are must haves for the Whole 30) I couldn’t believe the cost of these things. NO WONDER we are fat!!! No wonder we eat crap!! Good Lord it’s expensive to eat healthy. Oh well. I am doing this. I am not going to cave in. I-GOT-THIS!

Okay so here’s the deal… I will tell you more as we go along. I will tell you what I ate. I am promising not to cheat (on purpose) and I vow to be open minded. Today I feel pretty good. It was a strange day. I had to text my sister 30 times to ask if I could add Stevia to my coffee, or if I could have a piece of gum. It was weird eating salsa with a fork while everyone else used a tortilla chip. It was strange not having one of my cherry cordials <WEAKNESS> after dinner. I’ve never wanted a Reese’s so bad in my life and every time I open up the cabinet it is staring at me. SIGH…. I didn’t cheat. I’m tired and hungry and I’m going to bed.

BREAKFAST: 

14,000 cups of coffee. [okay like 5] Black. black coffee with no creamer or anything tasty in it.

One fried egg with salt and pepper on it

LUNCH:

Fajitas from a Mexican Restaurant with no cheese, sour cream, or tortilla.

DINNER:

Sausage and Shrimp pinterest recipe my sister sent me.   (Click on the link to make it. Super easy. Super yummy. Even my husband who is not on the Whole30 loved it!)

SNACKS:

2 scoops of almond butter. 1 apple. handful of almonds. handful of pistachios. and a crap ton of water.

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