Knit Wit Living

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Whole30 Six Month Report

Here’s my Whole30 six month report.  I did not step on a scale before I started and have not stepped on one since.  I didn’t want to make this a numbers game.  That really messes with my head and I just wanted to focus on how I felt.

  1. My Golf Game is Better
  2. My Clothing Fits Better
  3. I am More Focused
  4. No More (Real) Cravings
  5. I am Sleeping Better

Whole30 Six Month Report

My Golf Game is Better

Well, first, let’s not get carried away.  When I say my golf game is better, I am not saying that I am good yet.  Just to be clear.  I still need more lessons and even more practice.  But my swing is better, I can focus more, and my putting is better.  Since my body is changing its shape it is easier to swing and position the putter.  Yes, there’s still a lot to think about and not think about it (part of playing golf is not overthinking it, and not having your thoughts get in the way of your game) but my body seems to be more flexible and less in the way.

My Clothing Fits Better

I do not really pay that much attention to clothing. I have a fairly scant wardrobe and am not a clothes horse.  However, one of my body size gauges is my work badge that I wear in the office.  I wear it on a lanyard around my neck.  My varying body weights have had it closer up, where I could just position my breasts near the badge swipe box and then open the doors. Nowadays, the badge hangs lower on my body so I know that my body has been changing.

I’ve also noticed that many of my necklaces hang lower than when I first made them.

Whole30 Six Month Report

I mostly wear dresses and recently tried on one in the size the next step down the other day at a store…and it fit!  I also tried one on in my Whole30 starting size, and it was way too big.  I can still get away with wearing my existing wardrobe, so it’s not a drastic change – which I also like.  Slow and steady.

I am More Focused

I have reported on this before.   Again, don’t get me wrong, I still like to waste time and just process thoughts while playing Candy Crush or some other “mindless” activity.  However, now when I’m thinking about procrastinating a simple task I just decide to do it instead of thinking about it a zillion times before I “cave in” and get it done.  Like, putting away my shoes, or emptying the dishwasher. Non-consequential tasks that would have otherwise clogged my thinking. I get things done faster now, and then have time to do the more enjoyable activities, like reading, beading, knitting, and golf.

No More (Real) Cravings

(Real) refers to yes, sometimes I think about having that cupcake with copious amounts of frosting (or really, just the cup of frosting).  But it’s not a craving – more of a remember how much (I thought) I enjoyed that?  I step off the Whole30 for a variety of items here and there (primarily cocktails), but then come running back to the structure and stability of the Whole30.  Every now and then I allow myself some gluten, then suffer through joint inflammation mentally kicking myself for it.  Sugar makes me bite my nails.  Cheese makes me all mucus-y. I don’t even enjoy legumes. I am thankful that potatoes are allowed. I relish food texture, and potatoes allow for the chewing consistency that I would otherwise miss with grains.

Whole30 Six Month Report

The prosecco is #NOTWhole30.

Every now and again, I will put aside the wonderful raw oysters and sashimi and treat myself to sushi.  It’s good, but not necessary all that often.

I Am Sleeping Better

While my mind is more active at bedtime, I am sleeping through the night.  I have started wearing a sleeping mask to block out the light and make myself focus on quiet and darkness at night.  Since I am not consuming dairy, my throat is not bogged with phlegm and I am sleeping straight through the night.  Wow, maybe that should have been the first item because that contributes to everything else.

 

 

 

Chocolate Babka Debacle – NOT Whole30 Approved

Chocolate Babka is NOT on the Whole30

Chocolate Babka is a wonderful, heavenly, delicious dessert made from chocolate, sugar, butter and flour.  Here’s a great recipe from the Smitten Kitchen.  Trader Joe’s describes theirs as:

Chocolate Babka is crafted from scratch, in small batches, using a sweet yeast dough that’s covered with a rich chocolate filling, and twisted by hand before being placed in a high loaf pan to be proofed and baked. The generous application of chocolate reveals itself as swirls in the finished product when the Babka is sliced.

chocolate babka debacle

DDSO’s son and girlfriend came over and brought a Chocolate Babka gift.  Oh, my!  Toward the end of their visit, I made tea and we cracked open the Babka.

Swoon!

chocolate babka debacle chocolate babka debacle

I cannot resist the heavenly concoction of chocolate, butter and sugar rolled in flaky layers of dough, and then baked and melded into a sweet luscious delicious mouth watering gooey dessert.

Devouring more of the babka after my guests left was shameful, but oh so delicious!  I finally threw the leftovers out after the 5th “this is the last bite” (yes, only 5!).  And I took the garbage out to the curb.  Yes, I know myself.  And did consider having a 6-10th final bite in the evening before repeatedly remembering it was already in the trash bag, in the garbage can, on the curb waiting for tomorrow’s trash pick up.

Did I mention Chocolate Babka (or any Babka) is not Whole 30?

And boy, did I feel it.  The rest of the day was L E T H A R G Y personified.  I could not do a thing. I was tired, unmotivated. My body must have been in shock.  All plans…out the window!  I barely moved, binge watching The Last Alaskans (a great show!), and finally late in the evening managed to get myself up and into bed.

I forgot the next day about my fall from grace, or my fall into delicious heavenly but oh so dangerous chocolate delight. I went to work and found myself highly emotional. I got tears in my eyes when I received a very unprofessional email from a colleague who was trying to throw me under the bus.  Luckily I had enough sense, professionalism and experience not to respond in kind, and instead set up a meeting with my manager to let her handle it. I also got tears in my eyes during a staff meeting in which the Director of our department came in and thanked us for our work.  He wanted to acknowledge us and started with me, telling everyone else on the team what I do and what a “value add” I contribute.  Oh my!

A roller coaster of a day.  I forgot about the fall into the gluten chocolate-sugar buttery heavenliness and went to the Whole30 site to see if others had reported a high emotional state while being on the Whole30.  The light bulb went off while I was perusing the site.  DUH!  It’s not the Whole30 that’s making me crazy. It’s the “Not Whole30” that’s making me crazy!

Well, sometimes I need to fall off the wagon to remember why I’m on it.

Thank goodness that’s over.

Though, yes, very delicious.

Yum.

Mustard

Or an ode to Mustard

Or I’m on the Whole30 again

A new appreciation for mustard. Listed as one of the six things I would not like to live without as “not that I can’t live without it, but it does add a bright flavor,” on a previous online dating profile.  (Did not bring any new admirers.)

This is actually a new way for me to report that I’m back on the Whole30.  You know when you’re just not feeling that great, and you know that your diet is to blame? That’s when I knew that the Whole30 needs to be more than a sporadic plunge every now and again.  3 weeks into the first month now. I’ve decided that I can step off it for no more than a week each month.  Since I have mini vacations this month and next, I can plan to eat “whatever” (more likely drink “whatever”) while I am away, but then come back and do what’s really right for me.

mustard

I now have a new appreciation for different flavors, and a somewhat limited condiment selection as many of them contain sugar, so mustard has moved rapidly up the list. It’s tart, vinegary, fresh, and has no bad ingredients.

Mustard

Now you know I usually go for the organic, but Heinz had better graphics!  Also interesting to note that the mustard brand is part of the ketchup line. Go figure!

The truth:

mustard

The Results

After two days of being back on the Whole30, I checked a previous post to see if I was on track:

  • Sleeping better – check
  • I feel the need to move around – check
  • Clear thinking. Focused. Get things done quickly.  – check
  • Thirsty. – check
  • Cravings. None. – check
  • My skin is brighter.  – check
  • Energy Level. Up.  – check
  • More decisive. – check – and more self-assured.
  • My fingernails are stronger.  – check
  • My stomach is not bloated. – check
  • BOREDOM. – NO!!!!!! My mind is running amuck with energy.  This did not happen before. Now, I am coming up with ideas right and left, waking up in the middle of the night to write them down, moving forward on them the next day, and beyond. This is craziness.  Is this how it’s supposed to be?  I am actually getting tired from all this excitement! and waking up from thinking too much.

Okay, okay, one should not complain about being too alert.  It’s just so odd for me.

New Habits

Water. Lots of water.  Also kicking the plastic food container habit.

Mustard

Very bare refrigerator.  Some items are waiting for a non Whole 30 day, like the Maple Syrup and the wine!

Mustard

Alertness = Lots of reading!  Reading report to follow…

mustard

And for now,  I unplugged the coffee machine!

mustard

Not to worry, I ordered some Whole30 approved “creamer” and will be back in business soon!

Gluten – Love it or Leave it – or both?

I ate entirely too much gluten this weekend.  Of course I feel much better when I eat no gluten at all. I have not been diagnosed as celiac nor as gluten intolerant. However, I do notice that I become extremely bloated, tired, lethargic, and feel as though my lungs are congested after I eat it.

So why on earth did I consume a sausage roll after playing golf on Saturday? (For those not in the Northeast, a sausage roll is similar to a calzone – sausage, peppers, onions and cheese baked in a pizza dough, served with a marinara dipping sauce.)  I was starving, and it seemed like it would be filling.  It was delicious.   But the after-effects reminded me why I do not eat that kind of food.

Imagine my surprise to realize that I am now finding myself absolutely addicted to The Great British Baking Show! This is a British baking competition where each week, the recurring contestants referred to as “the bakers” face a 3-round challenge, and at the end of the episode one is named The Star Baker and another is sent home.

Gluten

It is fascinating how these amateur bakers create wonders!  The judges and the tasks are extremely intimidating and the hosts are enjoyable.  Ready, Set, Bake!

Gluten

The funny thing is that I try not to eat gluten, and all the recipes contain it. Yet, that doesn’t make it lose any appeal.  It’s still wondrous seeing these bakers make these creations.

Typically, with most TV shows and movies, I am trying to catch up to see what everyone’s talking about.  I found out tonight that I’m actually watching the current season (at least current in the US – it may have aired already in England).  That’s why I thought of sharing it with you!

The first season is on Netflix. The third season is currently airing.  I’m catching up on the first season. I’m up to date on the third season.  Soon, I’ll have to find the second season.

But I’ll save my own creativity to knitting and beading (and avoid gluten consumption)!

My 4 Day Whole 30

My 4 day Whole 30 is ongoing! The premise of the Whole 30 is to reset your nutritional balance by cutting out all the psychologically unhealthy, hormone-unbalancing, gut-disrupting, inflammatory food groups for a full 30 days.  When the 30 days are complete, slowly add the omitted foods to observe how each one affects you.

I am a huge proponent of the Whole 30!  During my first trial, I discovered that I have a slight allergy to strawberries in that they make my skin itch.  So now every time I am confronted with the choice to have strawberries, or a food with strawberries in it (my local sushi restaurant has a roll with miso-strawberry sauce) I can make an intelligent decision if it’s worth the discomfort.

4 day whole 30

My first attempt at the Whole30 regiment was super successful! The second attempt, not so much.  I lasted about 4 days, and not fully committed.

However…

That is only half the story.

When you finish the Whole30, you are reminded to try to live by eating cleanly, but allow yourself to enjoy life and foods with no regrets.  Just hop back on the Whole30 bandwagon as much as you can.

I learned during this go-round that I need to stop trying to do the Whole 30 completely.  I need to focus on doing it as much as I can, constantly noticing how different foods affect my body and my state of being.

I noticed that Sugar is Not My Friend.  Eating sugar makes me very unbalanced. I chew my fingernails, play with my hair, am very unfocused, and lethargic. So I cut out sugar as a general rule.  I still do not eat a lot of gluten either.  It makes me bloated, and tired.  And I eat very little cheese.  These are my guidelines now.  Not just for 30 days.  For life.  The picture below is a little extreme, but I think I do need to avoid sugar very assiduously.

4 day whole 30

Of course, I should be drinking more water.  Yeah, I may get there one day.  Not a priority!

I did not weigh or measure myself before starting the Whole30.  People keep asking me what I’ve done differently – what’s changed?  I have been losing weight!  My skin is healthier, brighter.  The Ex even noticed that my hair looks healthier.  ??? (Meaning isn’t that odd that 1- I was with the Ex and 2- that he commented on my hair???!) Bear in mind that I did not look extremely malnourished or unhealthy before.  But there are noticeable differences now.

Most importantly, I feel better.  I have more energy, better focus, a longer attention span.  I get super excited about mundane things, like getting a lot of small tasks completed in a short period of time, or leading a very efficient meeting.

Yay.

The Whole 30 Again…or maybe The Three-Quarters 30

It’s that time of year again – jump back on the Whole 30 wagon. I do not feel I went wrong in the past year, but I have noticed it’s time to restart my wholesomeness.

My trip to Milan and Tuscany reacquainted my taste buds with fine wine and great coffee.

(Note: Coffee is allowed on the Whole30, but I like it with half and half, and dairy is not permitted.)

I came back home eschewing American coffee, and looking for a perfect, rich brew.

Before my trip I was very happy with my coffee maker.
Whole 30

When I came home, I bought an old-fashioned espresso maker.
Whole 30

And good coffee.
Whole 30

Then I graduated to the Ninja coffee maker.
Whole 30
My unsolicited feedback is that this makes great coffee. My only complaint is that the full carafe only makes about 4 (American) cups. But the quality of the coffee is superb.

But I digress. Good coffee, fine wine.

I started the Whole 30 on Monday. I re-read my last post about what I liked and didn’t like about the Whole30 before, and it all rings true:

  • I really don’t like not being inspired to eat. Life becomes eating to live instead of living to eat. I enjoy eating, and savoring good food.
  • I do like being focused, sleeping well, and having a lot of energy.
  • The interesting thing so far is that I am tired at night. I find myself nodding off at 10:30 and sleeping the whole night through. I guess that’s my body playing catch up from all the late nights from having too much caffeine or too much rich food.

My progress thus far:

  • Thursday evening was a friend’s birthday celebration. I had a nice glass of wine and some bread and butter with my meal. It was delicious!
  • I forgave myself and got back on the Whole 30 wagon.
  • Friday morning – back to the Whole 30.
  • Friday evening – sushi…and green tea ice cream!
  • I forgave myself and got back on the Whole 30 wagon.
  • Saturday morning – bagels, cream cheese and butter. Coffee with frothed cream.
    Heavenly.
  • I forgave myself and got back on the Whole 30 wagon.
  • Saturday lunch is coming. Planning on a Big A$$ salad and chicken thighs cooked in coconut oil.

Yep. It’s not the Whole 30 this time. Definitely the Three-Quarters 30.
I forgive myself and get back on the Whole 30 wagon.

I’m good with that.

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