Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How I Prepped for My First Week of Whole30

I just started my 3rd Whole30.

The best part about Whole30, Round 3? 

Less Anxiety, More Anticipation

No kidding. My first Whole30, I was a wreck for at least 2 weeks before we started. Partly because I’m a rule-following people-pleaser who lives in fear of “messing up” or “doing something wrong."

**Yes, I am one of those people who dreamed about cheating on my Whole30. I dreamed I drank a Coke. It was awesome, but I woke up in a panic. I also came close to licking peanut butter off my finger while making sandwiches for the boys…that scare probably took a good six-months off my life.**

But this time around? I’m psyched. I’m so psyched we started earlier than we had to. (Our FFCF family isn’t starting until Monday). What? I know! It’s insane. But I feel gross from way too much holiday indulgence and I didn’t want to wait any longer. If you’d told me last summer I would be excited about doing this—for the third time—I’d have laughed, probably hysterically…maybe with a few tears from the stress of it all.

So, if you’re getting ready to embark on your first Whole30 and you’re about to need anxiety meds…I UNDERSTAND.

Take a few deep breaths. Remember that everyone was brand new to this once. Even if you “mess up” you can view it as a learning opportunity and get right back on track. No worries. While this is a rigid plan, it’s not intended to make you miserable. It’s intended to help you feel better. Just ask as many questions as you need to and Whole30 on!

I've already shared my Top 10 Tips to prepare for your Whole30, but people keep asking me exactly what I'm doing, so I thought I'd give you the run down of what I did to prepare for our first week.

I prepared a little bit differently than I did the first time through, and I'm more efficient in the kitchen than I was six months ago, but I’m not gonna lie….I spent most of Saturday afternoon in the kitchen. (Thank goodness for the Harry Potter weekend on ABCFamily!) 

Here’s what I focused on:

1. Making sauces. I’ve already talked about how important Whole30 compliant mayo is. I made 4 batches. I made some Whole30 compliant Hoisin sauce (from Well Fed 2) because I needed it for a salad dressing and I will need it for a recipe later this week. I also whipped up a huge batch of Cilantro Ranch dressing (take this recipe, use cilantro instead of parsley, leave out the paprika and thin it with some water). This stuff will make your veggie intake so much more enjoyable!

2. Making breakfast a breeze. I prefer to have a nice leisurely breakfast with fried eggs, a few pieces of compliant bacon, half my plate filled with peppers and onions and a half an avocado with a splash of salsa. But most mornings, I don’t have time for that. So I made some egg muffins that will get me by in a pinch. I like these because they are loaded with veggies. I had some this morning with salsa (I like Mateo's salsa that I buy at Costco, but it's really not that hard to find compliant salsa), some avocado, and a cup of bone broth. 

3. Experimenting with a new recipe. I found this recipe for spinach, sausage and potato soup on Pinterest and it was awesome. It’s going in the rotation. Pinterest is a great source of Whole30 recipes, but be careful. Just because Pinterest says it's Whole30 doesn't mean it is. With this recipe, I used compliant sausage and full-fat coconut milk in place of the heavy cream to make it fit within the guidelines. 

4. Grilling lots of meat. We grilled chicken wings, a pork tenderloin, some compliant Italian sausages, and eight chicken breasts. It’s always a great idea to grill multiple foods as longs the big green egg is fired up, and it will help our evenings go more smoothly when the kids and I don’t have to wait for Brian to get home, change clothes, start the grill, wait for it to heat up….you get the idea.

5. Making bone broth. I keep reading about how awesome bone broth is, so I’m adding turkey broth and beef broth to my repertoire. So far, I like it.

6. Stocking up on Whole30 staples. I hit Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and Publix. I bought coconut aminos (great sub for soy sauce), sparkling water, compliant pickles (Trader Joe’s brand has some good ones) and mustards (mustard with horseradish will be a great sub for BBQ sauce with that pork tenderloin), plenty of veggies and some fruit.

I also hopped online and ordered jerky, Primal Pacs and Red Boat fish sauce because I already know I can’t find that stuff around here. Check out Whole30.com for their approved sources and affiliate links if you’re worried about getting something that is non-compliant. 

7. Making sure Day 1 goes off without a hitch. We already knew we would be out of town through late Monday evening. So before we left on Sunday, I made sure we had options to get us through Day 1 without any drama. No scrambling for a compliant lunch or having to cook in order to eat. We’ve got all that grilled meat plus we have a few salads in mason jars, so we are set. 

There's nothing magical about my prep. I've done this several times now, so I know where I'm likely to run into trouble (no time for breakfast, starving at lunch, running out of mayo ...) and my preparation is designed to minimize that. Your prep will look different from mine. Just spend a little time thinking about your week and your life and try to minimize the challenges as much as you can.

If you're gearing up for a Whole30, feel free to ask questions in the comments. I'm not an expert, but I'll be happy to help any way I can! 

Click to Tweet: Gearing up for Whole30? Here's how I prepped for Week 1.


Vonda Skelton said...

Wow, Lynn, I'm impressed! What a great way to get your family involved in healthy living. :-)