Now that we’ve talked about the crazy glory that is Whole 30 let’s talk about life AFTER Whole 30. I’ll share my experience and then give you some pointers on how you can continue down a successful path after your 30 days are up.
Ooh, la, y’all! Life after Whole 30 for me has been quite the ride. The day that Whole 30 ended we headed to the Melting Pot and celebrated with some very un-whole-thirty foods.
This ain’t Whole 30.
Other than that my initial reaction was to just stay on the program and not stop. After all, I felt great, had tons of energy and was losing weight every single day.
However, I saw Thanksgiving and Christmas looming on the calendar and questioned my ability to be so strict. So, I decided to accept that I was done.
The basic idea of life post 30 is this: 80% of the time eat Paleo, 20% of the time eat what you want. I wanted to do that.
Thanksgiving came and went and then December.
In December I really saw some of my old habits start creeping back in. So by January, I was super ready to do another Whole 30. It felt great to get back into healthy foods that made me feel good. January came and went and another Whole 30 was in the books!
So… How can you be successful after Whole 30?
Pretty much the same way you were successful DURING Whole 30.
Yes, the program is called Whole 30 but for some people 30 days just isn’t enough to reprogram and detox your body from years of bad habits. This was me to a T and I wish I’d just gone on and done a Whole 60 or even a Whole 100. The forums are full of people doing just that.
So, know thyself! Are you good with a Whole 30 or do you need to gird up and keep going?
2) PLANNING, PLANNING, PLANNING!
Getting to eat how you want 20% of the time sounds marvelous, right? However, when you do the math it only turns out to be…er…(People why are y’all makin’ me do math!) four meals a week or something like that.
So, just like you planned your little self to death in Whole 30 you have to do the same after it. Make your meal plan. Decide in advance what those four meals are going to be!
Otherwise it will be Tuesday and you will have already used up your four meals and won’t be able to have the Thanksgiving Sandwich on Thursday at Moe’s BBQ (For real kids, it’s turkey, cranberry dressing, red and white sauce, and stuffing on a toasted bun – believe me, use one of the meals for it!)
Me and Billy and our minions
3) KEEP UP YOUR SUPPORT!
Stay active in the Whole 30 forums – they have a section for people that are done with Whole 30 but still want to maintain. You are still on a meal plan – it’s called ‘The Rest of Your Life’ meal plan!
4) SET GOALS
I’m running my first 5K in April!
It has been a real eye opener to see how much easier it is to exercise when you eat right. I always heard ‘well, if you exercise you can eat whatever you want.’ People, this simply is not true. At least, it wasn’t for me.
When I put the right things in my body, my body works like the machine God made it to be!
Even though I’m not on a strict Whole 30 regime right now I still make my yummy meals I came to love on Whole 30. One of these meals is the famous, in our circle anyway, Claire’s Chili! And with that I give you a picture of my friend Claire holding the best dang chili ever! Trust me on this chili, kids. Make it, eat it, freeze it, love it.
CLAIRE’S Whole30 CHILI
4 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
3 jalapeños (one halved, one seeded and diced, one sliced)*
2 large green peppers, diced
1 15 oz. can pineapple tidbits
Large handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
4 tbsp chili powder
3 tbsp onion powder
3 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp sea salt
1 tbsp fresh ground pepper
Cayenne pepper to taste
2 14oz cans diced tomatoes
2 lbs ground beef/chuck/pork/whatever you want!
Coat bottom of large pot with olive oil. Add onion, garlic, jalapenos, green pepper, pineapple, cilantro, and all spices. Cook until onions and peppers are tender. Add tomatoes and simmer another 15 min. While simmering, brown 2 lbs of meat in a separate pan. Drain juices and add to large pot. Turn heat on low and simmer for about 2 hours, stirring often. Enjoy!
*I seed and dice all the jalapeños because I’m a big baby when it comes to spices. Most people do not find it too spicy her way, though!
Have you considered Whole 30 in your family?
A Note from Beth: I have been so inspired by Paula’s story (plus I’ve been hearing all about Whole 30 from a bajillion different places on the interweb as of late) so hubs and I have decided to give it a whirl ourselves. We did the GAPS Diet for 4 months as a family, and loved it, so hopefully we’ll rock this challenge too. I’ll keep y’all updated when we finally dive in!