At this point in my life, I am fortunate enough to be in a position where all of my health and fitness “adventures” are out of “want to” as opposed to “need to.” When I tell people I’m starting a new challenge or training for another race, some people look at me like I’m a little weird. But, to live the lifestyle I do, sometimes you have to enjoy things that most people simply wouldn’t. This time is probably no different. I am starting a new challenge, only this time it isn’t physical. It is a 30-day nutrition challenge called the “Whole 30 Program.”
So what is the Whole 30 Program?? Here is the layout, in very simplified form. As you could guess by the name, it lasts for 30 days. The purpose is to cut out all processed/refined foods and eat ONLY natural, whole foods. The goal of the program is to allow your body time to heal from the damage that fake foods do to it. In a way, you’re pushing the reset button with your metabolism and learning to eat all over again. Now, again, I don’t “need” a life-changing challenge such as this. I eat right, I exercise every day, and I take care of myself pretty well for a 26 year-old guy. But, like I said, I want to constantly challenge myself to do things that I sometimes don’t know if I can. And this, being the first nutritional challenge I’ve undertaken, is definitely one of those things. It will take much more discipline than any physical challenge or training regimen that I have ever gone through.
So, now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s get to the fun stuff. What are the rules?? Well, to make it easier, I’ll tell you what I’m not allowed to do. Here are the no-no’s.
I’m not allowed any of the following for 30 days straight:
- Added sugar of any kind
- Alcohol or tobacco
- Grains – wheat, rye, rice, quinoa, oats, corn
- Legumes – black/red/pinto/white/kidney beans, peanuts, peanut butter, soy
- Dairy – cheese, milk, yogurt, sour cream
- White potatoes
- MSG or Sulfites – prominent in processed foods
- Taking body measurements of any kind (not that I normally do)
I’m going to struggle with 3 things here, I can already tell you. First of all, and probably most difficult, will be cutting out peanut butter. I love peanut butter, and eat it just about every day. So I know right off the bat, that it’s going to be difficult. I actually threw away a half full jar of it last night. Second, no alcohol. Not that I’m an alcoholic by any stretch, but I do enjoy a good beer every once in a while. I will have to save the Shock Tops and White Rascals until Thanksgiving. Finally, no cheat meals of any kind. I usually designate Sundays for my cheat day when it comes to my food. This will be a tough one for me, as that is normally by day to hit the pause button and not worry about anything. We will see how that goes.
I will keep you guys updated along the way to let you know how much I hate my life at the moment. HA!
Wish me luck, lord knows I’m going to need it.
For more information on the Whole 30 Program, visit http://www.whole9life.com