Spiraling Through Whole30: Survival Tips for 30 Days of Goodness
With a host of cookbooks, daily journals, significant brand partnerships, and even certifications, Whole30 is here to stay. This popular meal plan cuts added sugar (even natural sugar like honey and sugar alternatives like Stevia), alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, and processed foods for 30 days. That leaves you with meat, veggies, fruit, and some nuts.
We decided to give Whole30 a try, and as women who love a good challenge, the plan doesn’t disappoint in that area.
Experience and Results
Whole 30 is about so much more than losing weight. Yes, that does happen, but we also connected with our bodies and managed our relationship with food. We learned what foods made our bodies feel great, and what didn’t feel so good. Through the plan, we were able to figure out which foods help us power through our workouts, and what was better suited for a rest day.
There are definitely days through the plan that seems to be harder than others. There’s something about day three or four, and again around the second week, when those cravings kick into overdrive. It’s important to equip yourself so that you are ready to fight them head-on. There were also days when you realize you feel more energized than normal, or that the belly bloat has reduced significantly.
The true beauty of the program is after the 30 days is over. What many people don’t talk about is the two-week reintroduction program. Every two to three days after Whole30, you are prompted to add something back into your diet to see how your body reacts. For instance, on the Monday after your Whole30 is up, you may decide to test if dairy is truly a trigger for you. So, you go for some greek yogurt. If there is no stomach irritation, then you know you can continue with dairy in your diet. Three days later, you may decide to give legumes a try and note if you feel bloated or tired. This process will help you identify your personal triggers.
We both love to cook, so Whole30 allowed us to get our creative juices flowing. Yes, for 30 days you may be eliminating some of your favorite foods. But, you still have access to so many wonderful foods that allow you to create fantastic meals like salmon cakes and mashed sweet potatoes with cinnamon apples. It’s all about your mindset.
Tips on Getting Through Whole30
Planning meals ahead of time is a lifesaver and a healthy habit to develop. Meal prep enables you to have healthy food options without having to think throughout the week. And it can save you money, I mean a $15 for lunch everyday can really add up.
Keep yourself armed with snacks that are Whole30 approved so that no matter what the day throws at you, you are ready and not tempted to cheat. We kept sweet potatoes on deck, as well as the lemon flavored Lara Bar. As much as we both love coffee, the switch to green tea with just a little honey was an easy one.
Stick with simple recipes
While we love to cook, a lot of times, between working, teaching, and maintaining relationships with friends, we don’t always have to make elaborate meals. By sticking to a simple formula of two servings of veggies, one serving of protein and one serving of carbs, it’s easy to put together a delicious meal in the middle of your week.
Spice up your life
We don’t believe in bland food, it’s sort of against the culture. So spices are everything! Find brands that help you stick to the plan without sacrificing the flavor. In one week that packet of chicken breast can be Italian on Monday, Mexican on Tuesday, Greek on Wednesday, and so on! Some of our favorite brands include Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce, Tessemae’s Organic Avocado Ranch, and BBQ sauce.
Whole30 Compliant Turkey Spaghetti Squash
- 1 Butternut Squash
- 1 Pound of Ground Turkey
- Red Pepper (Diced)
- Green Pepper (Diced)
- Onion (Diced)
- Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper
- Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce
Homemade Taco Seasoning
- 2 Tbsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- ¼ tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. sea salt.
- ¼-½ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional
Prepare Your Spaghetti Squash
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.
Cut the squash in half lengthwise from stem to tail and scrape out the seeds.* Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Place squash, cut-side down, onto the prepared baking dish. Place into oven and roast until tender, about 35-45 minutes.
Remove from oven and let rest until cool enough to handle.
Using a fork, scrape the flesh to create long strands.
Cook your Ground Turkey
In a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, prepare to brown the ground turkey
Jazz up the recipe with diced red and green peppers, mushrooms and onion
Cook over medium heat until meat is no longer pink and vegetables are crisp-tenders
Combine the spaghetti squash, ground turkey, taco seasoning and Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce