Saturday, December 6, 2014

Week 1

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Ended the week with this beautiful salad, and a cup of raspberry coconut milk tapioca pudding for dessert.

Days 5 and 6

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Well it's officially day 7 at this point, but I've been behind on the posts. I've had a very successful week on my second whole30 (minus the tiny slip up of one Negra Modelo at last night's going away party for a great co-worker). 

I've been averaging about 38 points a day, far over my allotted 26, even with weeklies. Despite that I know that this Whole30 is off to a rockin' start. I'm already feeling higher afternoon energy levels, less bloated, and am sleeping well. My sugar cravings are mostly gone.

Tonight my husband is breaking out his favorite cast-iron to cook me a chicken from the Zenbelly cookbook. Can't wait! 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Day 3: 37 PP

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I'd be having some serious doubts about these high daily points totals if I hadn't successfully completed a Whole30 in the past. Starting to feel somewhat guilty (though I know today was so high in part because I ate an entire avocado at dinner - 12 pp, that's nuts!)

Breakfast was my usually mix of fresh fruit and nuts for 7 pp. Lunch was last nights leftovers again, I was complimented in the lunch room for my healthy meals. I do not miss the days of lean cuisines or turkey on a sandwich thin and a 100 calorie pack. 

For dinner tonight I made one of my Paleo faves: a baked stuff sweet potato topped with ground beef (seasoned with my own taco mix), salsa, a pile of guac, and some jalapeños. ¡Que rico!


Monday, December 1, 2014

Day 2

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Day two. 35 points. Felt a bit sluggish today, starting to feel the first-week detox blues.

Breakfast, 7 points. Black coffee, apples, raisins, and a good sized handful of almonds. Doesn't sound very filling but it is!

Lunch was last nights leftovers (you'll see that is a trend here). 12 PP

Dinner: my Whole30 take on Chicken Parm (sans the parm, of course). 15 points, mainly from the ground almond meal crust and ghee/olive oil the chicken was pan-fried in. 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Day one

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Here it is, the first day of my WWhole30. As I suspected, I went pretty far over my points allowance, but I don't in any way feel I went overboard in my eating in Whole30 terms.

Breakfast: 10 points. Shredded sweet potato hash browns cooked in bacon fat topped with two fried eggs. Black coffee. (This is at least twice the amount of Points I would let myself eat for breakfast if following WW.)

Snack: Some dried apricots and a passionfruit LaCroix. 2 points (I know this is a grey area with Whole30ers but I ate raisins and other dried fruits in my first round and it didn't negatively affect me.)

These are so good! Low points value
too, so great for either program.
Lunch: Two grass-fed hot dogs, a pile of roasted romanesco (yummers), an apple and some almond butter. 14 points.

Dinner: 14 points. 3 Spicy Tuna Cakes from Michelle Tam's Nom Nom Paleo (so nom!). Try them if you haven't. They're divine. Also a good size salad with half an avocado, a sprinkling of sunflower seeds, and Tessa Mae's Lemon Garlic vinagrette. My favorite.

Grand total for the day, 40 points. That far surpasses the 26 PointsPlus I'd be allowed if following Weight Watchers (even if you threw in 7 from my weeklies I still went a bit over).

Didn't feel hungry all day. Looking forward to day 2. :)


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Here are the self-inflicted rules of my program. I'm following the Whole30 for the next 30 days (yes, I'm aware and excited about that including Christmas). For those not familiar with Whole30, it means is that I'll be eating a lot of meat, veggies, fruit, nuts, and healthy fats. No sugar, no alcohol, no grains. No soy or dairy. Basically nothing out of a box or that's been processed.

I'll also be tracking the Points Plus Weight Watchers values for everything I eat. WW would allow me 26 daily points and 49 weekly points at my starting weight. (33 daily if dividing the weeklies evenly). This is simply for comparison purposes, I am not limiting myself to the allowed points totals.

My prediction is that I will go over my daily points goals, as I'll be eating more high-calorie high-fat (high nutrition!) food. This in contrast from the low-fat "diet food" eaten as staples when on Weight Watchers. No 100 calorie packs, no two-point Fiber One bars. It will be interesting to see just how imbalanced these programs are. Or perhaps not! Maybe without grains and sugar my point totals will still add up to around my daily goal.

I'm also following the Whole30 rule of not weighing myself until the last day, rather than weekly as promoted by WW.

Some of you think I'm crazy to be doing this over the holidays. But I'm looking forward to my Whole30 Christmas, have already started to plan my feast. Check back later to see what day one's totals looked like!

Thursday, November 27, 2014


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It's been said that it's more difficult than weight loss and I would probably have to agree. I've never been able to maintain Weight Watchers losses, having lost the same 20 pounds a half a dozen times. I'm not alone - one study I read reports that 6% of WW members reach their goal weight annually, and that less than 4% of those stay within the 5-pounds-above-goal-weight requirement to stay a Lifetime member. 

It's not just Weight Watchers. Most women who diet don't reach their goals, and many who do only stay there for a short time. My experience is that I never got to my final goal, usually gave up around halfway there. I would always gain at least some of the weight back, at varying rates.

About a year after having my son, I gave WW one last shot. I did well, aided by the  7 extra daily points I was given as a nursing mom. I lost 12 pounds over the course of several months, getting me close to the weight I was before giving birth (but still around 25 away from my original and ultimate goal weight of 140.)

After a few months I made a lunch date with a friend who was in the middle of her first Whole30. For those unfamiliar with the program, it doesn't require you to calorie count, or track food, but provides you with a limited list of foods to choose from. Most people I've talked to about it see the diet as unreasonable and too restrictive. I admit that I went into it thinking it would be 30 days of hell from which I'd emerge and resume eating my old favorites.

My experience with Whole30, and specifically with maintaince, was entirely different. I actually stretched my first Whole30 for 45 days because I was feeling so damn good. I slowly began reintroducing foods as suggested, for a while after following a modified Paleo diet, incorporating some honey and maple syrups, Paleo baked goods, even some gluten free beers. 

My point here is that Whole30 changed my relationship with food. I more often choose healthy whole foods from processed packaged goods. Because of this, I lost 17 pounds and 5 months later have kept off 14 of them. At 152, I'm still about 12 pounds from my goal but teetering on the edge of a health BMI range for the first time in my adult life. It feels great.

My WWhole30 experiment starts tomorrow. Follow here and on Instagram (@wwhole30).

Paleo or Points?

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I'm 36 years old and have spent my adult years struggling with my weight (half my life!). The two most successful programs I've attempted are Weight Watchers (multiple times on and off for 18 years) and most recently Whole30.

While the points system was successful for me, I never found it sustainable. I have always struggled with the idea that it was acceptable to eat chips and fettuccini alfredo when trying to teach yourself how to live a healthy lifestyle.

Where WW focuses on portion sizes, Whole30 is centered on putting whole, unprocessed, healthy foods in your body. No sugar, no alcohol, limited carbs. Many view this as more restrictive, but for me it actually allowed more freedom. During my first Whole30 I experienced a detox period of about one week and beyond that I truly felt more free. Free from the dependency of sugar cravings, free from writing everything I ate down. Sure it was hard to give up dessert, and cream in my coffee. But the tradeoff was that I ate when I wanted and how much I needed to feel sustained.

This blog is not to persuade you to follow one diet or another. It's simply to satisfy my curiosity about quantity and quality of food. I've completed one Whole30 (was a Whole45 in fact) and I've on-and-off followed the principles for the past 6 months. My second Whole30 will begin the Sunday after Thanksgiving, and I will detail here everything I eat, including the Weight Watchers Points Plus values. I'm curious as to how many points I will consume daily during my Whole30 and how that reflects on the scale at the end.

Thanks for reading. Happy Thanksgiving!


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