Thursday, November 17, 2016

Whole30 – Days 15-21: Birthdays and Beasts

Thursday: I have a huge milestone to write about for this day. Some of you may not think this is big, but for me, it's YUUUGE!

Are you ready??

Thursday morning, I drank coffee. Without sugar!! And it didn't taste horrible!! I didn't even make a nasty face when I drank it!! It did, of course, have coconut milk in it, but I am allowed to drink that, and it definitely has no sugar in it.

Also on Thursday, since I am having this completely unprecedented problem of not eating enough food, I was assigned some homework from fitness coach guy. We will call him FCG from now on. He told me to count my carbs for the day, and if I come in at under 120g, then I have problems.

Well, I got problems.

On any given day, I may have about 25g of carbs. And that's being generous.

On this plan, though, it is really hard to get over 100g of carbs in a day. I can't have beans or bread or really anything that would put me at that number without completely stuffing myself full of bell peppers and avocados. And I'm just not that hungry throughout the day.

So I have to figure out how to combat this, because, as FCG said, you will lose weight, but it takes a "shit ton of time" to correct. And, yes, I would like to lose some weight, but I want it to be healthy so that I can get to a maintaining status instead of having to worry about every single thing I put in my body for the rest of my life. And let's be honest, Christmas is coming, and I fully plan on eating more than one Reese's Christmas Tree when it does (Mom!!). I don't want to lose all the hard work I've been putting in the past couple of weeks either.

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Before I begin talking about the rest of the days, I'd just like to know who's ridiculous idea it was to do Whole30 during the month of my birthday?! Despite trying to psych myself up and be strong, I really just set myself up for disappointment. But, life goes on. And so must I.

Friday–Sunday: The beginning of the end. I had a friend in town all weekend, and let's just say it didn't go well. On the food side of things. I'm not going to go into much detail because I am ashamed. Although I definitely didn't have a problem meeting my carb goals. Ugh.

Monday: My friend left town, and I was all excited to get back on track! I did so well for breakfast and lunch. And then I got a call from the office across the street at work. They had a birthday cake for me. Crap.

So sweet, but there went my Monday.

Tuesday: Another new day! I started again and did well. I went to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them that night because a friend got early passes. FCG met me at my office beforehand, and we went together (2nd date FTW!). He apparently hadn't eaten all day and was starving. He told me he was running to Chipotle before he met me but showed up to the office empty-handed. He said he got lost (he lives out of town) and didn't want to be late, so he was still hungry when we got to the theatre. I had done very well on my Whole30-ness that day and wasn't as hungry as he was. Although, after we started talking about it, Chipotle did sound pretty good. We stood in line at the theatre for a while (still talking about Chipotle off and on), and they finally let us in to sit down. Where someone promptly sat next to us with Chipotle. FCG and I nearly had a meltdown. Jealousy overwhelmed us, and, after that chick whipped a Starbucks drink out of her purse, we started talking about getting popcorn. I told him I wasn't going to eat any. He asked me if I was going to judge him if he did. The fitness and nutrition coach thought I was going to judge him for eating. How cute. We both finally caved, and he came back with a small popcorn and two of the biggest water bottles I've ever seen. We ate half the bag and were done with it.

The fact that he actually went to get it won him tons of points in my book. He may be a health nut, but he's still human. I appreciate that.

Wednesday: Another good day with good choices. It took a couple of days, and I feel super guilty about this weekend, but I'm finally back on track. And I think to make up for the cheat days, I'm going to continue this after Thanksgiving and up until Christmas.

Although I probably won't blog about it. Not sure I want the world knowing my willpower is still subpar.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Whole30 – Days 13-14: Drinking and Denial

Yesterday, I tried to write a post, but it became clear that I was too emotional over the whole election debacle, so I put it off. After sleeping on it and drinking quite a bit of wine last night (I'll get to that later), I feel much better about our state of affairs. I have mostly decided to do what my dogs used to do when I was growing up: look away and pretend there isn't a problem. I'm going to say this last thing, and then I will be done commenting anything to do with the American government's state of affairs: I hope he turns out to be a better president than he was a candidate. I wish him all the success, and I hope he proves all of us nay-sayers wrong.

Now, on to the good stuff.

Tuesday: I have been eating bacon and eggs (with hash browns when I have time–one potato can go a long way) every morning this week, and it has been great! Breakfast has been my favorite meal of the day.

For lunch, I have been eating on the leftovers from Friday's get-together. I had a lot of chipotle chicken left over, and it went great on a salad with Dump Ranch and avocado. Yum! I was disappointed when I ran out of that and will probably make it again.

After work, I had to get the stuff to make dinner, and then I did a barre work out. So by the time I finally got around to making dinner, it was close to 8:30pm. I could have just had a snack in place of dinner, but it occurred to me (well, actually it occurred to the fitness coach guy who is still, for some reason, hanging around–he's out-of-my-league hot) that I have not been eating enough calories lately (go figure). So, since I was really hungry, and I figured I wouldn't be getting any sleep that night anyway with it being election day and all, I went ahead and made the buffalo ranch stuffed peppers again (and ate a Pink Lady apple with Almond Butter while I was cooking – those peppers take forever to make!). They were just as good this time around as last time. I didn't make any guac to top them with because I didn't have enough time or ripe avocados, but I threw some Dump Ranch on them, and that was really good.

Wednesday: Bacon and eggs again for breakfast. Always lovely.

Leftover stuffed pepper for lunch. Wonderful again.

However, dinner is where I had the problem. And this is where writing this blog and being honest gets hard. But that is why I started doing this in the first place, so I'm not going to lie about it.

So here goes: I cheated. Big time. And I didn't even try to stop myself.

A couple of friends and I went to a Single's Mixer at Ruth's Chris that night. I know, I know. But it was for a charity (Cystic Fibrosis), so it was ultimately for a good cause. Now, please understand that one cannot simply go to a "Single's Mixer" and not have some kind of liquid courage. So I had two glasses of wine to help me get through it. I met one guy but did not get his number, so it was probably a waste of alcohol. But hey, I tried.

After the mixer, we were starving. The apps at said mixer were disappointing at best, and I didn't see the point in even trying to eat what they put out. So we went to Chima, another steak house on the next block. Where I had another glass of wine (don't shoot me!!). They had an appetizer in the form of two sliders and fries that, after two and a half glasses of wine on an empty stomach, I could not refuse. So I ate them. Every bit of that app. And it. was. delicious.

I regret nothing.

I also slept through the entire night without a sleep aid, so yay!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Whole30 – Days 9-12: Chocolate Dreaming

Well, apparently I've got quite a few days to catch up on since I seriously slacked off this weekend. In writing, not necessarily the diet itself. Although there were a couple of snags that I will get to.

Thursday: Just another day. Went off without incident. Even got in a barre workout that night after work and felt great all day.

Friday: I had a get-together that night with a few friends, and I made three different Whole30-approved appetizers that turned out pretty good! Sweet potato sliders were my favorite, but we also had spinach meatballs and buffalo chicken stuffed peppers with ranch that weren't terrible either. I also spent the night drinking apple spice tea mixed with sparkling water out of a wine glass.

Other than completely stopping up my garbage disposal cleaning out the fridge for my new roommate who moved in Saturday, the night went very well. I wasn't even tempted to drink any alcohol.

Saturday: I ate lunch out and tried to stick to the diet as much as I could. I'm sure the fries I got weren't exactly fried in Whole30 compliant oil, but there wasn't really a way to get around that, and it seemed like the best side I could order from the menu without getting something full of cheese.

I went on a date with a fitness and nutrition coach Saturday night. He was already aware of my diet because we've spent the past couple of weeks talking about it. He's actually encouraged me a little bit to stay on track. He picked Cabo Fish Taco to eat since the food is somewhat clean. I got a blackened tuna salad without dressing. Not the best-tasting thing I've eaten lately, but it got the job done, I guess. Although I did have a banana with almond butter later that night when I got home.

It was also helpful to get some additional encouragement from him. He told me he's lost 100lbs not once, but twice(!!), which is how he got so into nutrition.

Sunday: I spent most of the day hanging out at home but ate out again at dinner at a place that had a tiny menu. I had no choice but to cheat here because I didn't do my research before going, but the majority of the plate was full of veggies, so I still don't think I did terribly.

Monday: I did fine. Made hash browns today with my bacon and eggs (for dinner). So good!

As of now, I haven't noticed a difference in my sleeping, which was kind of the reason I did this to begin with (that and to be healthier), so it's a little disappointing. I still need my sleep aid at night, and I know this because every now and then, I won't take it, but I still wake up and can't get back to sleep just like I was doing before starting it. But I am going to see this through and keep trying to see if anything changes.

My energy level is great! Even when I know I am getting tired, I still feel fresh. None of the groggy feeling or foggyness I feel when I normally get tired. In fact, the only way I know I am getting tired is when I start yawning, and of course, if it is late and past my bedtime. I am really happy with how I have been feeling lately.

I will also say that before this little challenge, I thought alcohol was going to be the hardest thing I was going to be giving up. But I was wrong. I miss sugar like the fat kid I am. And before I started this, I was never really able to pin down my favorite sweet food. However, Reese's Cups are currently all I think about. Day in and day out. I even had a dream about them. No kidding. An ex kept throwing them at me (unwrapped) and they would land just out of my reach. It also doesn't help that there is an entire drawer full of them at work for the taking. I have not touched that drawer for 13 days now. And I feel like each day is a little bit harder. Whether this challenge changes my relationship with food or not, I am literally counting down the days until I can eat one.

The timeline said this would happen, and I must admit that I did not believe that I would actually dream about chocolate. And I have to admit that I was a little ashamed that it happened to me. But, it is what it is, I guess. I did just see an article where Drew Barrymore admitted that she cried over pizza when she did her latest diet, so at least I'm not actually crying over anything ... yet. That made me feel a little better.

My Saturday date asked me yesterday how I was doing and if I'd had any Reese's cravings since Saturday (we talked all about the one food we would have if it didn't count, so I told him). I told him I was ashamed to say they are fairly constant (I left out the part about dreaming about them). He said, "If you can eat a salad without dressing, you can do anything."

Good point, buddy!

I will be telling myself that from now on.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Whole30 – Days 6-8: Diets and Dating

This post is mix of a diet and a dating story, so it's kind of all over the place, but it's my blog, I can do what I want. Love you all!

Monday: Morning of Day 6 went great. I felt great and, despite not grocery shopping like I should have on Sunday, I still had eggs and Whole30 compliant bacon to tide me over until I got to the store.

My coworkers invited me to lunch that afternoon, and since I just started working here and am trying to make connections, I did not say no. We went to Just Fresh and I got a fruit cup with a bowl of turkey chili. The chili had beans in it, which I know is not compliant, but it was the closest thing on the menu to compliant, so I went with it. It was delicious.

That night, I had a date. We met at a The Gallery in Southend, which is a coffee/wine shop. I was under the impression we'd be getting wine, but he got coffee, and since I didn't want to be the only one drinking, I quickly made a decision to get an iced coffee with no sugar. Not exactly compliant since it had milk in it, but neither was the wine I was planning on drinking instead, so I let it go. After that, we went to Midnight Diner for food where everything I got was pretty much compliant, but I definitely ate a biscuit (huge no-no). The eggs I got were pretty undercooked, so I needed something to eat them with. Otherwise, I wouldn't have eaten any of it and you already know I don't want to be that weird chick on a diet when I go on dates during this time. The Whole30 girls recommend starting over when you eat something off-plan, but since Thanksgiving is right around the corner and I don't have time to start over, I am just going to overlook it for the time being and continue what I have been doing.

Sue me.

Tuesday: Day 7 morning and afternoon were fine, but I had book club that night. Book club is one of my favorite nights of the month, so I told myself before I even walked in the door that I would have my max two glasses of wine. As soon as I walked in the door, I laid eyes on an enormous bowl of chocolate. Caramel Hershey Kisses and the like. Ugh, this was going to be harder than I thought. I spent most of the night trying not to stare at it, but in the end, I didn't touch it or dessert (chocolate cheesecake – I swear all I see is chocolate these days!). I left feeling rather good about the night despite the wine and desperately wanting to cheat "just this once."

Willpower is a muscle and the more you use it, the stronger it gets (or so I keep telling myself).

Wednesday: Day 8 was another good one full of compliant foods. I made a latte at work with my coconut milk. Still no good. I really miss sugar. At lunch I made Dump Ranch, which sounds gross, but was oh-so-good! SO good! Tasted almost like the real thing they make in restaurants. I can't believe it took me so long to make. I may never eat another salad dressing again!

That night I had my second date with Monday guy. He invited me to Latin mass and dinner. I'd heard of these masses before but had never had the chance to go, so I thought, why not? Word of advice: even if both of you are Catholic, don't go to mass on your second date. I thought it was really cool that we had this in common and would be able to do that together. Eventually. However, I am well aware that a first-timer at a Catholic mass can be completely weirded out with all the kneeling, praying and chanting in unison, but the latin mass, even for this old-timer was... weird. To say the least. I didn't understand a word of it, the priest kept his back to the congregation the entire time, and Monday guy kept making the sign of the cross and reading silently to himself (except I could hear him).

I'm not sure if he was doing all this because he thought it would impress me ("See? I really am Catholic!!"), but the dude has only recently converted to Catholicism and these are things people who have grown up in the church don't even do (although there are still some who do). I do go to church and am close to my priest, but I like to think of myself as more of a modern Catholic... I take birth control, I hate confession and only go when my mom makes me at Christmastime, and I have my own personal relationship with God. (Which is why I hate confession. Gone are the days of thinking one can only speak to God through a priest. He knows what I've done, no need to spill it to anyone who will listen.) Clearly Monday guy was much more serious about the specifics of the mass than I am, and I have to say it freaked me out a little.

Not to mention I did not feel anything for him when I saw him. Not at all, actually. Which sucked because we had a ton of things in common (he is Catholic, after all), he was tall (6'5"), and had his shit together (working on his PhD). Also handsome. Oh, and did I mention he had a background in counseling?! Which means he probably had the patience to handle all my stupid emotional issues that crop up every time I'm in a relationship as well. He was basically everything I'd been praying for. I knew he could have taken care of me if I had let him. And he seemed to want to. I could tell that he liked me, but I just couldn't make myself attracted to him. Or make myself feel anything about him one way or the other. But honestly, I was hoping (actually praying) that would change once we got to dinner and could talk to each other.

But when we went to dinner after mass, the conversation was still boring. Then he told me he was nervous, and that's when I knew I needed to call it because I wasn't nervous at all. All I could really think about was how it was still early enough for me to get groceries if we got the check soon and how proud I was of the fact that I'd had nothing to eat that was not Whole30 compliant (yay, fajitas! ... or should I say cooked veggies with no rice, beans or tortillas).

And right about that time, I knew God was throwing his hands up in the air and yelling, "That was the guy, Emily!! That was the. guy you dumbass!!" and wondering what he's going to do with me. I'm going to be single forever, God. That's what's going to happen. We should both just accept it now. Probably.

So, I've got over a week in the books, and I feel better than ever. Despite possibly losing my soulmate in the process.