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The Whole 30 Experience

The Whole 30xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /

First off, I wanted to say when I started the whole 30 program, it was not to win the competition or lose weight. What captured my interest was the faster recovery. So a little about me…

I am 37 and have been working out most of my life. Before I started crossfit, I considered myself pretty fit. I had heard of crossfit before and had been to the main site and incorporated some of the wods into my own training. However, after coming to CFS, I realized how wrong I had been doing the moves. The overhead squat, clean and jerks, push press, everything. It is one thing to read how to perform the moves and another to actually be coached. So I started at the box in July of last year.  I was surprised at how I couldn’t do the WODs RX considering how I “thought” I was in excellent shape.  So I became stronger and better adapted to the crossfit program and was finally able to do most WODs RX. My issue was not recovering fast enough and I thought this was just my “old age” catching up with me. Then Gale had a nutrition class earlier this year, the whole 30. I am down, I need to clean up my diet anyhow. Discussion focused around cutting out the foods that cause a systemic inflammatory effect upon the body and how cutting these foods out will result in weight loss, better mood, faster recovery and better wod times.  

The program started on February 11th and for 30 days we were to eat no grains, no sugar, no processed foods, alcohol, beans, potatoes or dairy. I had to make some adjustments and these included:

No protein shakes after the wod

No Tacos (I love tacos)

No alcohol

No creamer in the coffee

No beans or corn (come to find out corn is a “grain”)

After thinking about all I had to give up, I started to come up with reasons to not do the program,  super bowl comes at the end of the program, I love my taco Tuesday, coffee sucks without creamer and splenda, etc, etc. I sat down and thought, hey, this is a challenge, if it were easy everyone would do it.

I had been eating pretty good before, but I need some things I didn’t have. So Kaie and I went to whole foods. It was a little more pricey but I bought plenty of nuts, coconut milk, coconut flakes (unsweetened) and various fruits and vegetables. I had been consuming dairy products, corn and beans daily and had to cut that out. Before the program, I ate a lot of chicken, beans, broccoli, brown rice, protein shakes, cottage cheese and tuna.  Here is how the program broke down week by week:

Week 1 – Was not too bad, I was still experimenting with quantity of food and timing of eating. My body was not in “shock” yet.

Week 2 – This was pretty bad, I had thought I didn’t eat that much grain products, but left out beer in that category. I struggled through week 2 cravings things I would not normally eat, such as chips, candy bars etc.

Week 3 – The Air force WOD killed me, Becca gave me a suggestion of what to eat pre and post wod and this greatly helped .  Mid week I could feel and see the changes. I felt much better and even made the box 5 out of the 6 times that week with good times (except the  Air force WOD).  I got my first muscle up this week too.

Week 4 – The best I had felt in a long time, I had wished the challenge was for 60 days now to keep me on track.



Faster recovery

Better wod times

Better mood over all

Weight loss



I spent a little more money than I normally did at the store, but I bought better quality. If you purchase between Whole foods and Target, you can pretty much all you need.

Initially, I had really bad cravings. This subsided when I started to eat more fats.

Low energy level first couple of weeks

Making time at work to eat between meals and not get a headache. I had constant headaches until about fourth week.


What I liked

I discovered I like coconut milk in my coffee for creamer and I do not need splenda to sweeten my tea or coffee. Avocados are good by themselves, I like butternut squash, which I had never tried before. My mood and attitude was much better and after about two and a half weeks I had more energy.




What I missed

What I missed the most was the luxury of going to happy hour and coffees from Starbucks. I also missed chewing gum. I had previously gone 2.5 years until last October when I got my adult braces off and can’t believe I made it that long.   

Since the program ended on March 1th, I have not changed much since the program; it is good to not be that strict after the 30 days. I will say I had tacos and enchilada that Friday after the challenge had ended and it made me sick to my stomach. I had the flu the following week and didn’t eat so well for a couple days but I have primarily stayed on the program.  I think this is something everyone should try at least once. It is only 30 days.

Whole 30

Viewing 1 - 2 out of 2 Comments

  • PaShunD 02/23/2011 12:49:27

    Next time Gary we should be Whole30 buddies cause we have alot of the same cravingslol Thanks for your honesty it's very refreshing!
  • BeccaR 02/22/2011 09:52:31

    Very cool, Gary!! I am gladded you finally found what worked for you and are sticking to it!


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