1. Fruit is sweeter than pastries…
And so are roasted carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, and plantains. If you don’t believe they can break a sweet craving then I hate to break it to you, but your taste-buds are probably jacked up. Think about it, if most of your diet consists of processed foods (even if it comes from the “healthy isle” at your local grocery store), those foods are modified to target the happy centers of your brain and brainwash your taste-buds. This can also be seen in people who need various amounts of salt and/or butter in their food.
You don’t “not like vegetables,” your taste-buds just haven’t learned to enjoy what real food tastes like. Give it a chance, and I promise you’ll come around and realize what I’m talking about.
2. I am going to rock my bikini this summer.
Confidence…I gained confidence. Don’t worry, I’m not here to brag about all the weight I lost (to be honest, I barely lost any), but I gained confidence. And that is much more valuable than losing weight. This summer is going to be the first summer, since I can remember, that I will walk around in a bikini with my chin held high, strutting my stuff without a care in the world about how much or how little I jiggle.
3. I can run on the treadmill because broccoli doesn’t make me as gassy as I thought.
Bloating sucks, we all hate it. Especially me. But I could not go a day without figuring out how I’m going to pass gas to get rid of the unbearably uncomfortable bloating I endured if I didn’t. Now, I don’t have to worry about that! And how liberating it is not to have that! I’m like a baby who can run free without his saggy diaper.
Do I still get gas from veggies though? Duh, every one does. However; something I eliminated was hiding – that sneaky culprit. I’ll figure out what it is eventually, but for now I’m just happy to be bloat-free.
4. I can also run on the treadmill because I don’t have to deal with unnecessary knee and hip pain anymore.
I have dealt with knee pain for almost 4 years now, and I used to describe my knee pain as feeling “inflamed,” so I definitely believe my relief as a complement with relieving my body’s chronic inflammation. Just recently, I started getting hip pain after my leg workouts, making it hard for me to do simple tasks like getting up from the couch, walking up the stairs, or running short distances without feeling a grinding, heavy sensation. During the first week I noticed the dramatic improvement in both areas. I can happily do my HIIT sprints twice a week without suffering the consequences, and I can get up and walk upstairs with ease. Don’t get me wrong, my leg workouts can brutal, but there’s a difference between sore and pain. I know the difference now.
5. I have time to do more stuff.
First of all, I’m the type of person who likes to sit down and enjoy my food. I also like voluminous meals, and I eat slow; therefore, my style takes a lot of time away from the rest of my daily duties. I used to eat 5 or 6 meals a day because I thought that’s how bodybuilders “keep their metabolisms revved,” and I feared being hungry. But that meant I had to play around with portion sizes, and prep my meals 5 or 6 times a day (AKA: it gets annoying).
Truth is, it’s always going to come down to this simple theory: calories in VS. calories out. There are bodybuilders who eat 6 or 7 meals, and there are bodybuilders who eat 2. Personally, I enjoy the liberty from eating 3 bigger meals (because volume, heyyy!); I enjoy being able to feel myself get hungry, and I like having time to do more stuff. Likewise, from what I learned, it better utilizes all the food it’s given, doesn’t trigger your immune system as much, and allows you to recognize true hunger cues – another bonus. It’s better to listen to your body when it’s hungry for lunch than listen for the clock to ding at 12!
There does come a bit of trial and error in regards to making sure your meals are big enough to hold you over until the next meal, but once you figure it out goals can be met, more can get done, and honestly, bigger meals = happy Sabrina. What can I say? I’m a little girl with a big appetite.
6. I am finally learning how to listen to my body.
Because I am finally able to feel for hunger cues, I am getting better at listening to when I am full too. I don’t count calories because I don’t allow a calculator to tell me how much I’m allowed to eat. I don’t eat 5-6 meals a day because that’s what “leading health experts” recommend as “the best way to keep your metabolism revved.” And I am learning the difference between cravings and hunger. Ultimately, I’m learning how to listen to my body and it’s liberating, and so much more trust worthy than all the new trends being published as the right and wrong way to lose weight.
Eat healthy food. Listen to your body. Train hard. The rest will fall into place.
7. I feel like The Hulk when I lift.
Muscle-mind connection is everything when you’re a bodybuilder. The more clear that connection, the better workout you have, the better results you’ll get. When I squat, every muscle fiber gets attention. When I do rows, I feel my lats, teres major, rhomboid major, etc. It’s a good time when you can feel every little muscle doing work (and then see it popping later!)
8. Don’t need gum because my breath doesn’t stink, thank you very much.
I have a pet peeve about bad breath. And if I was the one who had it? I’d act like a turtle and squeeze back into a shell; therefore, it was better to be on the safe-side. Eventually I started chewing gum so much I got addicted to it. I was that person where as soon as the gum’s flavor was gone, it was out with the old and in with the new. I barely ran out of my stash because I made sure I had that before I had my homework (I figured what was the point? I couldn’t focus without chewing gum anyway.)
But low and behold, I actually can focus on my work without chewing. I actually can workout without gum. And I really don’t need to worry about my breath anymore because I actually can walk around with normal breath. If anything, my breath smelled more when I was chewing that artificial crap. Anyway, I carry around a small travel mouthwash just in case I decide to have too much onions; however, I bought that little safety tool at the beginning of the program and still have yet to open it!
9. Muscle popping has replaced pimple popping.
That’s right! Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of compliments about how clear my skin is, and I’ve noticed that my muscles are popping more! This may be due to becoming slightly leaner, but again – I didn’t lose weight, so I’m assuming it’s from getting rid of some of that chronic inflammation.
10. I absolutely, wholeheartedly love this lifestyle.
It’s past day 30, and I’m still going strong living Paleo. Eventually I’m going to reintroduce foods so that I can learn what works for me and what doesn’t; however, I have no cravings or desire to go back to old habits. I genuinely love eating whole, unprocessed, real food. I love being able to say no to brownies, and I love being able to get my sweet-fix from fruits or sweet potato. I honestly feel better mentally and physically, and I’m more satisfied. I can actually stop myself; whereas with brownies, I feel like I could eat them until tomorrow…but that doesn’t mean I’ll never eat another brownie again.
I actually plan on eating some non-paleo things when I leave for Mexico and Spain in the next couple weeks! 😉
The Whole 30 is so much more than a diet. And it’s so much more than losing a few pounds. It’s about health; it’s about learning how to listen to your body, bringing your taste receptors back to normal, listening to your hunger/satiety cues, getting out of the yo-yo theories that are always flying around the media, getting away from the sugar crashes/headaches/chronic inflammation/stress/etc, feeling amazing and confident, and simply being the best version of yourself you can be. You cannot get that from any other diet in the entire fitness industry. This is a lifestyle.
I wish everyone would try this diet because it’s educational, really beneficial, and it’s not hard.
It is a challenge and it does take quite a bit of preparation, but it’s not hard. Starving and looking for clean water? That’s hard. Dealing with cancer and other awful diseases? That’s hard. Reading labels, prepping some chicken, and making a salad for lunch? That’s not hard. You can do this!!!
If you’d like more information, you can check out my previous blog about what the Whole 30 is, or you can buy the book right now!! Any questions about my experience? Please feel free to contact me! Or even email me personally, if you’d like, at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Have a wonderful week lovelies!