Starting on April 21st, I am doing my very first Whole30 Challenge. I am so excited about it! The past few months I have definitely been in a season of feasting with weddings, showers, spring break, etc. I need to hit the reset button again! If you have never heard of the Whole30 challenge, check out whole30.com/whole30-program-rules/ This program focuses on eating whole foods and cutting out all sugar, grains, refined carbs, dairy, white potatoes, legumes, and “paleo-fied” treats. I am excited about getting rid of my sugar cravings and energy slumps! Join along with me on this journey!
My hope is that whether you are currently doing a Whole30 or are doing one in the future, these posts will help you with meal ideas and tips. Enjoy!
April 21- Day 1
Today Owen and I both feel great. I think Owen is still a little confused and unsure about what he can or can’t eat, so he’s been cautious. But we’re getting there! Tonight we had date night, and after our usual yoga date class, we went to Texas Roadhouse. I got grilled chicken breast no barbecue sauce, with a side of steamed veggies and a small baked sweet potato topped with cinnamon only. Owen got the grilled salmon without the garlic butter, a side of green beans, and a small baked sweet potato.
Pictured above is my lunch I made quickly at home- cabbage, shaved brussel sprouts, dried oregano, cilantro, and tuna drizzled with apple cider vinegar and fresh-squeezed lemon juice. It was delicious and easy!
April 22- Day 2
Picture above is the breakfast we had- turkey green apple hash, no eggs. I will post the recipe sometime this week. We LOVED this breakfast. It was just slightly sweet but full of protein, so very filling. We will definitely be making this again.
April 23- Day 3
Today has been another great day! I personally feel like I have started to have some cravings. I always crave the usual- pancakes and waffles first, then cookies, and then a doughnut. So strange. I also had a bit of an energy slump in the early afternoon/evening. I think I will really need to get extra rest this weekend!
Pictured above is our little breakfast- egg muffin cups filled with tomatoes, onions, and spinach, wrapped with bacon. So easy! I made my Chorizo Sweet Potato hash for lunch and then we had bacon turkey avocado lettuce wraps for dinner.
April 24- Day 4
Today was a good day, even though I am still having some major pancake cravings. I am thankful because I did my bi-weekly breakfast with my friend Lindsey at a local cafe, and I ordered just plain scrambled eggs and sweet potato home fries, making sure they were not cooked in any honey or brown sugar. It was a simple breakfast but so filling. Even with all the delicious giant pancakes all around me (they have gluten free!!), I felt satisfied with my breakfast.
I had a major energy slump in the afternoon, which was a little hard to get through. I made a really delicious dinner (pictured above) that made up for it, though! My garlic zucchini turkey burgers with big, cooked slices of sweet potato as the “buns” topped with a delicious brussel sprout & cabbage “slaw,” and a side of zucchini slices cooked in coconut oil. Nom….for real.
April 25- Day 5
A wonderful Friday! Owen and I are still trucking along. I have felt pretty good today and still have a few cravings, but am getting used to putting those aside. Owen’s main complaint is that he needs more filling meals. We’re thinking he will just need to focus on getting more meat and bigger portion sizes in order to feel full. It’s good to realize on this program that the goal is not to starve yourself or to restrict. If you are hungry, EAT! It’s good to snack and eat the right portions to feel satisfied. Just focus on eating the right foods! So Owen can eat as much natural meats, veggies, nuts & seeds and fruits as he needs to get full. I think a lot of people think they have to restrict in some way. The goal here is not starvation, but giving your body nutrient-dense foods and getting rid of the “desire” for all the other things!
April 28- Day 8
I had a whirlwind of a weekend and honestly don’t remember enough to do posts for each day. So here’s my weekend recap- I went up to Fort Worth on Saturday to spend time with my family. My mom made delicious Puerto Rican food and I had some of her famous steak and onions on top of a salad with salsa, and a side of plantains. It was delicious.
Strangely, I’ve had a hard time with sweet cravings this time around. Detoxes, cleanses, and even the 21-day sugar detox that I’ve done before- I’ve never craved sweets this badly. On my drive home from Fort Worth Saturday night, I had this crazy urge to stop at every Braum’s/Wendy’s/Sonic along the way and get some kind of ice creamy chocolatey milkshakey goodness. I never do that anyway, let alone on the Whole30 challenge. It’s just strange. Anyone have any thoughts as to why this is happening so strongly this time around?
April 30- Day 10
Day 10- 1/3 of he way through! We are trucking along. I’ve honestly had a rough, busy-beyond-my-capacity couple of days. I’m shocked that I’ve somehow found some time to cook and stay sane. Thank you God! Today Owen told me that it was his hardest day so far on the whole30 because he badly craved Chick-fil-a and a Dr. Pepper. I am still craving sweets, but my cravings have honestly gotten better. I think we’re on the up.
I put a picture up of our breakfast this morning- sweet potatoes and blueberries sauteed in coconut oil and cinnamon, over-easy egg on the side. It was delicious! A nice, sweet little change to our breakfasts. I would highly recommend trying it out!
May 2- Day 12
Wow, this week has been crazy. I have been exhausted emotionally and physically, plus having little Kipling pup around has been an adjustment. But I feel like today is a day of breakthrough. Breakthrough with the Whole30 now that it feels a little easier, breakthrough with training the dog, and breakthrough in some rest and refreshment. It has been so needed. I think being on the Whole30 challenge this past week has been good because I didn’t have my typical sweets and other comfort foods that I turn to when I’m stressed or anxious. I really had to get to the root of my anxiety this week, actually deal with it, and find my comfort in Jesus.
I have received some great feedback from you guys about how the Whole30 is going, and it is SO encouraging!! I want to hear more about it! My hope in doing this challenge and documenting it on this page is that you guys will find inspiration and motivation for your own personal health journey. If you are doing the Whole30 and have any comments or testimonies of how it’s going for you, please tell me about it! Kitchenspired @ gmail.com
May 3- Day 13
Today was a rest day for me, and I really needed it!! I still had to study a lot for my ACE personal trainer certification exam that is coming up in 2 days!!!! Ahhh!! You guys, I need some serious prayers for this thing. There is so much information, and I really want to know all of it well not just to pass the exam but to be the best, most informed personal trainer I can be!
Pictured above was my meal #2, which I didn’t have until 3:30 pm. I make breakfast “tacos” with some Applegate farms brand deli turkey (whole30-approved) as the tortilla, filled them with some cabbage, eggs, and salsa. Simple and delicious!
We also ran out of food pretty quickly this week, but I had some leftover lunch budget cash from the week, so for dinner we treated ourselves to some Which Wich “lettucewiches.” If you haven’t tried this, you NEED to!! So delicious and lots of great fresh ingredient options!
May 4- Day 14
So today was a great day! Feeling really great and still enjoying doing the Whole30. I have felt a little stressed out with my personal training certification exam coming up, plus some events happening this weekend, but I’m thankful I don’t have the urge anymore to turn to my “comfort foods” to find peace and joy. I can have peace and joy without those things! Thank you God!
Pictured above was dinner… PaleOMG’s bacon and spinach stuffed chicken with a side of roasted broccoli. That stuff is super good, and surprisingly easy!
May 6- Day 16
Well everyone, today was a GREAT day. I took my personal training certification exam (through ACE) and PASSED!! This is a huge deal. While I was taking the exam I was so unsure. It was difficult and I doubted all my answers. When I hit submit I had to come to terms with the fact that I probably failed & that I would need to figure out what to do next. Well, I passed!! I got 633 out of 800, and just needed 500 to pass. YAY!!!!
Pictured above was my breakfast- leftover Curried Turkey Stuffed Sweet Potatoes (minus the sweet potato) mixed with spinach and topped with two runny eggs. It was a super filling breakfast and was the perfect “brain food” that I needed for the day!
May 8- Day 18
Today has been a good day. We’ve been busy so my mind honestly has not been on cravings or food very much. I have been finding ways to eat Whole30 at lunch and breakfast dates, too. It’s been easier than it was in the beginning! I can’t believe I only have about 12 days left. It has been a little sad now that Owen is not doing it with me…it makes it a little more challenging. Doing this with friends is always better!!
Today was a rest day from working out, plus I wasn’t too hungry at dinner. I just wanted a big heaping plate of veggies…so that’s exactly what I did. My dinner (pictured above) was a medley of cabbage, carrots, onions, brussel sprouts, and a couple slices of plantains, sauteed in some coconut oil and minced garlic. Yum!
May 10- Day 20
Owen and I had a big busy night on Friday night, so we really just needed a slow Saturday morning. Don’t you just love Saturdays? I love them most when I can have them slow & simple. That’s how this day was. I woke up before everyone else and made myself a quick small breakfast of eggs & chicken sausage. Then I made a big pancake breakfast for the men in my house to celebrate their big live recording they had on Friday night. I had to teach spin at 1 but didn’t want a full lunch before, so I had this perfect snack of a coconut cream pie Larabar with some almond butter and black coffee (pictured above). It gave me the right amount of energy for an awesome spin class!!
May 11- Day 21
Happy Mother’s day! I didn’t get to spend time with my momma, but we did get to go out to lunch with my in-laws, which was awesome!! We went to Freebirds. Did you know they have grass-fed beef as a meat option at Freebirds? And it’s delicious. Like, seriously the bomb. I got a Freedom salad with grass-fed steak, bacon, extra extra grilled veggies, cilantro, pico, red onions, and salsa on the side as my “dressing.” So perfect!
We also grilled out tonight with friends. It was a little hard not getting to eat the chips and homemade salsa they had on the table, but I thoroughly enjoyed the burger, grilled chicken, sweet potato fries, and grilled brussel sprouts & asparagus they had instead. Still a filling and flavorful dinner! Can’t believe I only have 9 days left! So far this is the longest I’ve gone doing a paleo challenge. The last one I did was the 21-day sugar detox in January. So, I’m making progress!This is what I ate today:
Breakfast- Small baked sweet potato stuffed with scrambled eggs, sausage, and spinach
AM Snack- 1/2 blueberry muffin Larabar
Lunch- Freebirds freedom salad with grass-fed steak, bacon, extra grilled veggies, pico, cilantro, and salsa, the other half of my Larabar
Post-workout snack- 1 banana and 1 green apple, about 1 tbsp almond butter
Dinner- 1 grilled burger patty with salsa on top, 6 oz grilled chicken, 1/2 serving sweet potato fries, 1 serving grilled brussel sprouts & asparagus
May 13- Day 23
Going strong today! I am still craving some pancakes like mad, but it’s nothing too bad. I am happy to be doing the Whole30 and thankful for the reset my body has needed!
This is what I ate today:
Breakfast- Scrambled eggs with sausage, spinach, and salsa
Lunch- 1/2 a grilled chicken salad with about 6 oz chicken, spinach, carrots, and salsa, one Bilinsky’s chicken sausage, one green apple
Snack- the other half of my little salad, one blueberry muffin larabar
Dinner- About 5 oz grilled rosemary chicken, 1 cup mashed plantains with avocado & bacon
PM Snack- some strawberries and grapes
I’m trying to get better at updating this page. Aren’t you so proud of me?
How is everyone doing? Today has been an okay day for me personally. Not great, just okay. I honestly have had this nasty cough for almost 3 weeks and today I felt pretty bad. I don’t know if it’s a side effect of the Whole30 or from the dog or what. Either way, I had to go home and take a nap before teaching spin. Oh, and I taught spin twice today…so I really had to get my energy! Here’s what I ate today:
Breakfast (post-workout)- Sausage, brussel sprouts, and 2 eggs, black coffee
Lunch- 1 small avocado, 2 slices bacon, sauteed salmon & cabbage, a couple chicharrones (pork rinds for all you Americans out there)
Pre-workout snack- 1 super small baked sweet potato with 1 tbsp almond butter, a little bit of black coffee
Post-workout (dinner)- On The Border sizzling fajita salad (lettuce, avocado, pico, fajita chicken and grilled onions, salsa as dressing), a cup of berries & fruit with coconut and almonds (pictured above)
May 17- Day 27
Today was a fantastic day! My parents came to town to visit and we had SO much fun!! They came down mid-morning and met Kipling for the first time 🙂 They loved him! Luckily, he was on his best behavior! Then we went to the Waco Downtown Farmers Market. It’s always a treat to get to go to the farmers market. My husband and parents got delicious crepes from our friends who have a crepe stand there (Co-Town Crepes), plus some big chocolate chip malt cookies. I enjoyed an iced coffee with almond milk 🙂 I was surprised that I didn’t miss the treats that I usually indulge in at the Farmers Market, but I just really enjoyed being with family. Then we toured more of Waco and came home, played a card game, I taught spin, then we went to Torchy’s Tacos. I was happy that they offer their tacos in bowls instead of tortillas, so I was still able to enjoy my fav restaurant! Then we got froyo afterwards, which meant a big bowl of fruit and coconut for me! Yum!
Pictured above is my breakfast- leftover chorizo/turkey/veggie mix scrambled with some spinach and egg, plus two crispy baked pieces of bacon. Nom!!
May 18- Day 28
Today was a good day, but I’m ready for this challenge to be over. Well, I’m ready and I’m not ready! I love the way I feel on this challenge and that I don’t really have to worry about what I’m eating. I can just focus on eating real, whole foods and not putting junk in my body. In that sense, I LOVE it. I am ready for it to be over because, like anyone else, I have my cravings too. I’m ready for some pancakes.
I also think I accidentally cheated today. And I felt it afterwards…I had to take a nap to get over my major energy slump.
This is what I ate today:
Breakfast- butternut squash, broccoli, spinach, sausage, scrambled with one egg, one banana, black coffee
AM Snack- Banana bread Larabar (I had a major dizzy spell and nosebleed this morning so I needed some sustenance!)
Lunch- 1 grilled chicken breast, steamed broccoli, some fruit, a few slices of grilled potatoes
Dinner- Mustard Dill grilled salmon, roasted butternut squash & broccoli, black decaf coffee
May 19- Day 29
We’re in the home stretch! This is what I ate today:
Breakfast- scrambled eggs with broccoli, spinach, butternut squash, one small chicken sweet potato burger, black coffee
AM Snack- Banana with almond butter
Lunch- 1 can of salmon with sauerkraut, 1 small avocado with kiwi salsa, pork rinds, 1 green apple
PM Snack- Lemon bar Larabar, carrots & blueberries
Dinner- Outback Steakhouse 5 oz sirloin, 4 grilled shrimp, roasted tomatoes, steamed broccoli, small baked sweet potato
May 20- Day 30
It’s the last day! It’s the last day! Wow I can’t believe it’s been 30 days. I am thankful for the opportunity to get to do this challenge…I think it was totally worth it! Every last minute! I need some time to process what I think about my Whole30 experience, then I will write a debrief post. For now, this is what I ate on Day 30!!!
Breakfast- Scrambled eggs with butternut squash, broccoli, cabbage, and chicken sausage, one banana with almond butter
Lunch- Deconstructed breakfast burrito with eggs, sausage, bacon, pico, fajita veggies, cilantro, spinach and salsa, one green apple
Dinner- 3 of my Sweet & Savory Sweet Potato Chicken Burgers, roasted brussel sprouts, some fruit