30 Day Nutrition Challenge – Week One!
Just like that we are a week into our 30-day challenge!
Well 5 days actually, because I am writing this a little early before we sail off on our cruise (internet free!) later today. I have quite enjoyed week one, despite some headaches due to the lack of ice-cream in my life this week!
In a nutshell, the challenge has been put forward from my local crossfit gym to eat high quality wholefoods, in appropriate portion sizes, from a recommended list of proteins, carbs, veg and good fats. We receive points for eating correct foods and correct portion sizes. We can also get a bonus point daily if we workout.
Here is how week one went!
On day one I woke up feeling optimistic and a little excited, despite being extra bloated and groggy after fried chicken and chips the night before and only 4 hours sleep – neither of which I would recommend! I did some journaling around my intention for this challenge, why I was doing it, and wanted I wanted to get out of it.
My main objective was to give my digestive system a reset to reduce IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) symptoms, to improve my energy, mood, sleep and performance by fuelling my body correctly, and to start to see a change in my measurements or body shape. I had already prepped my meals for the week ahead, so was ready to go! I had a rotation of 3 meals to keep things simple.
On the menu was taco bowls (salad, taco mince and avocado) with banana and strawberries, ginger and lime baked chicken thighs with sweet potato mash and sautéed greens, and silverside with baked potato and tomato and zucchini bake with. Every meal was delicious!
By lunch time on day one I was already wanting something sweet – already! I started to realise just how much sugar and processed rubbish I had been eating again prior to the challenge. Regardless, I was happy to let that feeling come and go and not judge it. By late afternoon I had a headache but went to crossfit anyway, and felt much better afterwards.
Day 2 & Day 3
Days two and three were quite similar, wanting something sweet and getting headaches, but I found that having some fruit with at least one of my meals and making sure I was drinking plenty of water certainly helped.
Within those first few days I was feeling more tired at bed time, but more rested when I woke. I think that was because I had stopped screwing up my body’s communication. I have been impartial to some very late nights over the past few months and one way I was able to do that, was to have sugar when I was feeling tired to keep me awake a bit longer – again, definitely not recommended!
On day three I was faced with some of my biggest temptations – fudge and donuts. Homemade donuts, that looked sooooo good! A work friend had made them the night before, and as we have often joked about making donuts ourselves after indulging in some fancy ones at work on occasion, she really wanted me to try them. I declined. She asked again, and again, and then heated them up.
Ya’ll know what hot cinnamon donuts smell like right? Yeah, I caved. Totally my choice of course, like everything is. The good news is that they were actually little miniature donut balls – literally about a bites worth! So, I tried the mini donut and it was delicious. I could have eaten another half a dozen of them, but I didn’t. That’s a win in my books! Next came the fudge. Another work friend bought back handmade chocolate and caramel fudge after her lunch break. She said it tasted amazing.
Once upon a time that would have been all it took, a simple offer, and I would have gladly accepted, whether I actually felt like it or not. But, I didn’t feel like eating fudge, so I politely declined – yay! The donut choice did result in me ‘losing’ a point for that day but I was completely okay with that.
So, days one and two I accumulated max points – 6 points for food and portion sizes, plus 1 bonus point for working out. On day three I accumulated 5 points for food and portion sizes, and no bonus point as I didn’t work out that day.
Day four was my first day at home during the challenge, which I found a lot more difficult than being at work! Although I had my meals prepped and ready to eat, there was also a fridge full of other yummy foods for hubby and my son which all of a sudden looked quite appealing.
It probably didn’t help that I was on my fourth day of the same 3 meals on rotation – noted for next week (well week 3 actually, more on why soon)! Despite all of that, I did stick to my planned meals.
By day four I was feeling quite good. My bloating had reduced massively and the headaches had subsided. I noticed that my knee which had previously been aching on and off for some weeks had also improved which would have been due to reduced inflammation from the absence of undesirable foods (atleast for me) again.
I also noticed by day four that I was going to the bathroom regularly again. Due to my IBS, numerous foods can disrupt my digestion, causing anything from chronic constipation to diarrhoea. Not pleasant, but certainly a means of feedback from my very clever body!
Day 5 & Day 6
When I was faced with the choice of my prepared meals (and following the challenge guidelines) or the fridge contents on offer during day four, I kept thinking about my impending holiday. As mentioned, we are leaving today, on day six of the challenge, for 8 days on a cruise ship.
When I committed to this 30-day reset I was very mindful of our holiday and how it would affect the results/outcome of the challenge. I was also very honest with myself and my desire to enjoy, indulge and celebrate while away. So, with a very challenging week ahead, I chose to make the most of the days beforehand.
Due to packing, running errands and travelling, I did not work out again on day four, so ended up with 6 points for my food and portion sizes the day.
And that brings me to today. This morning I woke up and did a home workout – one point for me! Although I followed the challenge guidelines for breakfast, I know that when we board the ship today, I won’t. Let’s be real here!
Sure, I intend on making healthy choices more often than not, and certainly know I will be more mindful of what I am eating than I would have been had I not been doing this challenge, but I am looking forward to enjoying, indulging a little, and celebrating just like I mentioned above.
With the challenge point system, if we have more than one meal in a day that is not ‘compliant’ than we do not get any points for that day.
Therefore, I don’t foresee that I will be earning any food points while away because no doubt I will enjoy atleast one meal plus a drink or dessert that doesn’t fit the guidelines. I am aiming to do a workout every day so I can claim my one point each day, so we will see how that pans out. Laying by the pool is pretty much swimming, which is pretty much a workout right?