I did it! Another round of Whole30 completed and this one was my most successful round yet. It feels pretty great to be sitting here knowing that I am on Day 1 of my Food Freedom and another step closer to determining what that actually means for me.

Today I am sharing my Whole30 victories and learnings with you. Perhaps it will inspire you to give the program a try or at a minimum strive for better eating habits. Either way, I love what Whole30 has done for me and hope that maybe one day you can and will try it out too!

  • Less stress and anxiety. Whole30 is huge for my mental health. I would be amiss to say zero stress and anxiety. I'm human. But, when I am eating clean my stress and anxiety levels are at a minimum, way, way lower than if I'm not eating clean. I am much less likely to go into overdrive with anxious thoughts. I thought is a thought is just a thought. Way less one way trips into worry-town.

  • Clearer mind, diminished brain fog. Goes right along with lower stress and anxiety levels. I think more clearly when I'm eating clean. I have less fuzziness in my head. You may not even realize that you have brain fog until it goes away for the first time. Trust me, it feels amazing.

  • Enjoying time in the kitchen. I used to dislike cooking. I hated leftovers. Now I actually enjoy spending time in kitchen trying out a new recipe or making an old favorite. And, leftovers are life. I could not do Whole30 without leftovers. Meal planning and having enough food to not have to cook everyday is magical.

  • Increased confidence in the kitchen. Again, hand in hand with enjoying my time in the kitchen. I have built increased confidence in my cooking. Not as fearful about serving a new recipe or even winging something completely on my own. I've cooked more meals on this round without following a recipe than ever before. That feels pretty great.

  • Not relying on the scale as a measure of success. As I said in an earlier post, I used to weigh myself daily. Every. Freaking. Day. And, if I didn't like what I saw it would alter my mood for at least a few minutes each morning. Three rounds in, I do not do Whole30 to lose weight though it is often an added benefit. Yet, still, prior to this program, I was a slave to the scale. I now know and realize that there is way more that goes into how you feel and the success you have than a number on a board.

  • Lower resting heart rate. On average over the last month my resting heart rate has been 3-5 beats lower than what it was over the summer.

  • Mindless eating is real. Do you eat when you are hungry or because the food is there in front of you? I used to always take a little of whatever my kids were snacking on and Whole30 made me recognize that I was eating just to eat and not because I needed the food.

  • More at ease at the grocery store. I am way more comfortable in navigating the store, not having to be laser focused on labels and knowing what is and is not good for me. My first time doing Whole30, it took forever to shop, checking ingredients for everything I bought. Now, I know what I can have, what's good for me and it makes shopping much less of an ordeal.

  • Increased energy levels. I love this one. Tiger Blood is for real. When you are not eating clean, you can feel weighed down, tired and have the need to always want a nap or to sleep in. It is amazing what the food we consume can do to our bodies. Grant it I love getting up for Bodyflow, but it is no problem to pop up at 5am to make it to class. I feel energetic and ready to go and Whole30 has helped with that.

  • Better sleep. I almost didn't add this to the list but I typically do not have any problems sleeping, Whole30 or not. But, I do sleep restfully when I'm eating clean and I suspect waking up with the energy that I do at 5am has something to do with getting a better nights rest.

  • More stamina at the gym = better workouts. This fits right into that increased energy. I perform better at the gym when I am eating clean. I use the energy gained and put that into the classes I'm taking or the exercises I'm doing. I can definitely tell the difference, for example, when it comes to a crazy cardio class like Bodyattack. Doing Bodyattack this month versus last I can feel an improvement in my ability to complete the class as well as overall endurance.

  • Clearer results from the gym. The saying that abs are made in the kitchen is a true story. You can do all the exercise in the world and if you aren't eating right you may never see the results you truly desire. My stomach feels flatter. My body feels stronger. I can lift heavier. I may be even able to see those baby biceps. It's nice to know and be able to actually see that time that I am putting in is paying off.

  • Calmer sugar dragon aka sugar cravings. Huge! I am a recovering sugar addict. After this third round, I feel more in control of my sugar dragon than before. Cravings are at a minimum and hopefully will stay in check. My goal with this is to not completely eliminate sweets, again human, but not too go crazy. Balance. One is enough. There doesn't have to be something sweet after every meal. These are things I will tell myself and practice to help remain in control as I move into Food Freedom.

This is not a comprehensive list but definitely the highlights of this round of Whole30. I feel great and am excited to move into Food Freedom. It's a little scary, like removing the training wheels, to ease back into non Whole30 foods but having done this before I feel more confident in finding that Food Freedom and what it means for me.