As I prepare to take another group of clients, family and friends through my Whole30 Fitness Challenge I realized that I never shared my initial experience. I had every intent of sharing this journey with you all, but new consulting jobs and new clients took precedence and fast forward four months… here we are gearing up for the second challenge.
Many of you wanted to know why I did the challenge. First, I wanted to lead by example. I wanted those doing the challenge to know that they had 100% of my support and that I was in this with them from start to finish. I wanted them to form a community in which accountability, support and communication served as the foundation. Second, I needed to hit the reset button on my diet. Aside from the occasional donut (or two) I keep my diet pretty clean – this is also in large part to the fact that I have an extremely finicky stomach and food allergies that have a zero tolerance policy on certain food groups – but I still felt as though I could do a better job.
This challenge was not about weight loss. My weight sits between 125-127lbs, and this works for my individual body type and frame. Anything less than this wouldn’t look or feel healthy. One of main reasons I chose this challenge over anything else that’s out there is because there is no emphasis or focus on counting calories or obsessing over the scale. As a matter of fact, weighing yourself during the challenge is a no, no.
The first couple of days were rough for some of my clients. They experienced headaches, cravings and angry text messages were hitting my phone every hour. This was in large part to withdrawals from sugar and high amounts of caffeine. We can all laugh about it now, but there were moments when I contemplated buying pepper spray.
So here are the benefits. . . I felt full after each meal, and there was never a time where I felt bloated or “stuffed” after eating. Although the amount of sleep I got each night didn’t change, I did experience more quality sleep. There were several mornings when I didn’t feel like I needed coffee to get my day started. My energy levels remained steady throughout the day as opposed to hitting highs and lows. Lastly, my skin looked and felt more radiant. It felt like someone flipped the switch on inside my head and my skin suddenly had this amazing glow!
One of the biggest takeaways from the Whole30 challenge was getting creative and trying new meals. The majority of the foods that we purchased were in season, which forced us to try things that we probably wouldn’t have reached for otherwise. The best part of the entire experience was watching my clients see for themselves what I’ve seen in them all along.