Whole 30

Goooooood morning from D.C.!

I’m back and ready to hit the ground running for the new year.

To kick start 2012 into high gear, I’ve decided to do another Paleo Whole 30. If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you may recall that I dabbled in Paleo and did my very first Whole 30 back in the summer, until I eventually ended it a few days shy of Day 30 while surrounded by Mickey Mouse shaped pancakes in Disney World. Like I could really turn those down.

In case you have no idea what crazy train I seem to have hopped on this time, in a nutshell the Paleo lifestyle embraces a diet that is grain free, dairy free, and legume free, and without the consumption of added sugar. It focuses on eating lean protein, vegetables, and fruits, along with good fats such as those from nuts  (almond butter! no peanuts <–legume), avocado, olive oil, and coconut.

I was pretty intrigued by the whole Paleo concept upon learning about it first from James (<–that’s Penpal! I’ve decided it’s no longer necessary to hide his first name from the world. 😉 ) as it’s really popular with his buddies in the military community, and then from reading about the experiences of another blogger. Everyone (including further research I did, such as pouring over another fantastic Paleo blog or two) talked about how incredible eating Paleo ended up making them feel, how it transformed not only their bodies but their energy levels; that they’d never felt better in their lives.

Um… really?

I’m cautiously optimistic by nature, aka a smiling skeptic, and one with a hardcore journalism background. Needless to say I wanted firsthand proof that what all these people were mooning over was in fact for real and as effective as they said… I usually chalk up most diets to hype and have always believed that moderation will never let you down in terms of a healthy eating plan. After James decided to give Paleo a shot in the summer, though, I figured what the heck! I wasn’t interested in losing weight, but rather wanted to be a guinea pig in order to ascertain whether or not all that Paleo baloney would live up to the hype.

Obviously you know how this story ends, because here I am, six months later, babbling about how I want to do it again. Honestly, I felt amazing while on Paleo.. and that’s coming from someone who lives for a good stack of pancakes and dreams about carbs. I had such a surge of energy during my Paleo experiment, and my body was sincerely more toned and in shape than it has ever been in my life – without changing any of my usual workouts or activities. Yean, it surprised me too.

Since then I’ve suckered two of my good friends into trying the Paleo thang (including Annie, the one I just saw over this past weekend!), and both love its effects too… I only stopped because I love pancakes more than I love my abs.

A Whole 30 is a traditional way to launch a Paleo lifestyle change, as it’s meant to keep you eating strictly Paleo for a full month. No licks out of the peanut butter jar, or chocolate chip cookie crumbs. And I’m personally giving Paleo another go right now because a. I want to get back on track with clean eating and high energy for workouts/LIFE, and b. well….. I want to be in kick-butt shape when a certain boyfriend returns from Afghanistan this winter.

Call me vain, I don’t care.

Oh, and Annie’s doing the Whole 30 along with me again this time, too!

SO, last night was my last grain filled meal til the first week of February…

Whole wheat waffles with flax covered in peanut butter and banana.. plus a few leftover granola bars just to get them out of my apartment before today. I know, I’m a picture of nutrition.

Considering all of the pancakes I’ve devoured in the last two weeks, I could probs use a break from carbohydrate loading. 😉

My Whole 30 started this morning, with a veggie scramble topped with hot sauce for breakfast.

I also just had my first workout of the new year, and it felt great. Sooo, who’s with Annie and I?

I’m going grocery shopping and will be posting a groceries list later on. 🙂

Happy Wednesday.

Anyone else ever done Paleo? Want to join for a Whole 30?

14 Comments on Whole 30

  1. Lindsay @ Lindsay's List
    January 4, 2012 at 11:35 AM (6 years ago)

    I’ve never done Paleo, but I’ve read about it on alot of healthy living sites! I’m sure you’ll be able to find yummy recipes now that it’s gaining popularity!
    I’ll eat cookies for the both of us! 😉

    • joelle
      January 4, 2012 at 12:46 PM (6 years ago)

      Lindsay: Yesss, please do! Chocolate chip with peanut butter for me!

  2. Kat @ Balance & Spice
    January 4, 2012 at 11:41 AM (6 years ago)

    I’ve never done Paleo, but the more I read, the more interesting it sounds. I’ll be heading off to Europe in less than a month, so it doesn’t feel like the wisest time to start a new food plan, but maybe when I get back I’ll give it a shot!

    • joelle
      January 4, 2012 at 12:45 PM (6 years ago)

      Kat: It’s definitely a change, but I enjoyed it last time.. Not sure I could ever do it forever though! And if I were going to Europe you bet your booty I’d be eating croissants and pasta to no end 😉 – have fun on your trip!

  3. Lauren Chamberlain
    January 4, 2012 at 12:40 PM (6 years ago)


    I love that you are doing this! My husband and I just started on Monday. I have been working my way to eating “paleo” since March 2010. Last year my gym had Melissa and Dallas (Whole 9 folks) at our gym to educate us about the Whole30. I had been eating grain/dairy free 80% of the time and even when I went to that conference I thought it was pretty extreme. My gym did a group challenge and like you said I really felt a change. As the year went on and the holidays came I realized I wasn’t feeling my best. So, like you I am pushing the “reset” button and starting the year off right. This time around I don’t feel like it is as big of a punishment because really it is only 30 days of your life and I know the payoff. (Not saying the glass of wine isn’t calling my name on Friday night! ah!).

    You may know many of these resources but I thought I would write a few that have helped me:
    -The Foodee- a blog database that has various paleo recipes by category
    -Everyday Paleo-I have her book..try the “Paleo lasagna” it is with zucchini and it will feed you for days!! (Also the Chile Verde is delish)
    -The book “Make it Paleo”- some great ideas (they also have blog) when the whole30 is over try the almond brownies..wow!
    There are some more if you are interested just let me know! Have fun and good luck 🙂


    • joelle
      January 4, 2012 at 12:47 PM (6 years ago)

      Lauren: Ah, thanks for your feedback here!! I love Everyday Paleo – she’s one of the blogs I linked to in my post… Great recipes! Definitely keep me posted on how you’re doing.. I’m trying Crossfit (FINALLY) on Sunday, too!

  4. Kirby
    January 4, 2012 at 4:01 PM (6 years ago)

    I started on the 1st! In addition to Lauren’s tips (Hi Lauren!) — I will suggest nomnompaleo’s blog. She’s awesome and her food looks great! It seems harder for me this time but hopefully that means the payoff will be even better! I already feel so much better after just a few days of healthier eating! I had waaaayy too many carbs over the holidays! Keep the paleo posts coming! 🙂

  5. Allison
    January 4, 2012 at 5:04 PM (6 years ago)

    This sounds like a “diet” [more of a lifestyle choice?] that I definitely am interested in trying and probably would be good for me! Although, I am a carb [bread specifically] feign 😛

    P.S. Love the phrase “smiling skeptic”- put a smile on my face!

  6. katie @KatieDid
    January 4, 2012 at 9:06 PM (6 years ago)

    I dabble into paleo eating, I probably eat paleo about 80% of the time. It was a gradual process for me, but I’d like to stick with it even more in this upcoming year. Good for you for giving it another go, I know first hand how great one can feel eating this way… love it!

    • joelle
      January 8, 2012 at 3:30 PM (6 years ago)

      Katie: It can definitely be a little tricky to stick with if you love grains (I could live on pancakes alone), but I do think it’s worth it by how it makes your body feel!

  7. Molly
    January 5, 2012 at 1:00 AM (6 years ago)


    I knew we were on the same wave length!!! I started the Whole30 on Sunday the 1st…and I have been working out, but I am starting crossfit in two weeks!!!! I know I just did like one million exclamation marks but that is how excited I am:) Your blog literally just made my day. I have a few fears…it is my birthday next week:/ and no cake and ice cream:( Also today someone at work brought in a million pieces of christmas candy and we got a snack and soda machine…why today of all days SERIOUSLY!!! So far so good though:) I had thai chicken curry made from paleodietlifestyle.com
    Here we go Paleo, I’m not gonna lie I feel pretty badass!!


    • joelle
      January 5, 2012 at 9:32 AM (6 years ago)

      Hi Molly! How exciting- I’m glad we’re doing this together! It’ll be worth it, I think. But what about your Pinkberry?!

  8. Maureen
    January 5, 2012 at 1:09 PM (6 years ago)

    I have been researching Paleo for a few weeks and just did some shopping yesterday to start us off on a new lifestyle.

    A few people I know have done it with great results. What I like is that it’s a lifestyle more than it’s a “diet.”

    • joelle
      January 5, 2012 at 1:13 PM (6 years ago)

      Hi Maureen! Thanks for reading.. I definitely agree it’s more of a lifestyle. Personally, I’m not trying to lose any weight, just to eat cleaner and feel stronger, and tone up a bit!


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