In January 2015, I did my first Whole30. I literally had no idea what to expect and was actually quite scared because I thought the “rules” were so strict. You have to read EVERY label so carefully. You can’t just go in to the store and assume things are compliant. Even the most innocent looking spices might have hidden sugars in them. I thought, “Man! Shopping is going to take me FORever now.” But I wanted to lose some weight, so I pursued it more and what did I learn? I was wrong. There were tons of resources out there to help me be successful on the Whole30. I wasn’t in this alone. There were tons of websites that could guide me and help me. I could do this. I convinced myself that I could do it. And I did.
Today I want to give you, a newbie Whole30-er, a few tips and tricks that helped me succeed on my first Whole30 journey.
- Do the Whole30 with someone. It can be your husband/wife, your sister, your mom, your friend, your neighbor, whoever. It’s 1000 times easier to have someone that you can keep yourself in check with and have to encourage you. My husband and I did it together back in January 2015 because (1) he’s the chef in our house so whatever he cooks, I eat. I didn’t force him to do it though, he was onboard from the beginning. And (2) we live together and I knew if one of us was eating and buying ice cream or cookies, the other would be pretty mad. We encouraged each other and made sure each other had what we needed to succeed.
- Meal plan and meal prep. I seriously CANNOT stress this one enough. Eating whole takes time. You can’t just pick something out of the fridge, pop it in the oven, and have dinner. You need to prepare it. I scheduled out our meals for the week (actually before we started, the whole month, but I later changed a few things). This helped me know what to buy when (fresh fruits/vegetables expire pretty quickly, you can’t buy them in bulk) and just helped with an overall plan for the week.
- Variety. This is important. I mentioned above that I meal planned for the whole 30 days. I thought this was a great idea at the time until… I got bored eating the same thing all the time. So I hopped on the computer and searched for new recipes. I found tons of AMAZING recipes for food that was good for me. I was hooked.
- Schedule the time. Know that cooking will take a little longer. Prep on the weekend if you can, but otherwise know you might be eating a little later than usual. And that’s ok!
- Have fun and try new things! You never know what you might like until you try it. I feel like I get stuck in such a rut and we eat the same things over and over. Search the internet, look on Pinterest, follow new Instagram accounts (see below) and find new recipes. The best part is… you can see what you’re going to be eating. If it looks good, it probably tastes good.
Instagram Accounts to Follow
@melissa_hartwig – Melissa is one of the founders of the whole30. She posts recipes as well as her day to day life stuff. She’s hilarious and inspirational all at the same time.
@whole30recipes – The official Instagram for Whole30 recipes.
@wholesisters – Two sisters bringing whole foods back to the dinner table. They often post family friendly recipes, which is perfect for me since I have a son to feed also.
@whole30 – The official Instagram for the Whole30 program.
@livewhole365 – @jenniferggreen and @tazandbelly ‘s Instagram account for their journey on eating whole foods for a whole year – 365 days. I follow Jennifer on Instagram and know she did the Whole 30 before and I’m assuming Kristin did too. They’ve challenged themselves to eat as whole as possible (with exceptions for vacations and such) for a whole year.
- Disclaimer : not everything that all of these accounts post everyday is Whole30. Make sure to fully read the post before assuming you can eat it on the Whole30.
A few more resources :
- The Whole30 website
- The Whole30 Facebook Page
- There is also a forum on the Whole30 website that has Instagram accounts to follow.
- CrazyTogether Blog recently did a post of her favorite whole30 Instagram accounts. Oddly enough, most of her recommendations correspond to mine above (which I had been following since I did my whole30 journey in 2015).
- Like to eat out? No problem! Here is the Whole30 Dining Out Guide
And one more resource, if you’re interested in a little more inspiration and information, I blogged about my journey on the Whole30. Here are my posts.
On my blog I share recipes, successes and failures, and even a hidden fast food restaurant that, if you order correctly, is totally Whole30!
So, tell me… have you done the Whole30 before? Any Instagram accounts or recipes you would recommend to me? I’m always looking for new inspiration! In fact, I’m hoping to start my second Whole30 in the next few weeks.
If you haven’t done a Whole30 before and are about to start one, good luck! Hope my tips and tricks are useful for you! Remember, you can do anything for 30 days — including giving up sweets or coffee (since I can’t handle my coffee without creamer, I cut it out completely and now rarely, if ever, drink it anymore)! If I can do it, you can do it.