First of Firsts

Today was a day that really challenged me, but I made it through. And now I have successfully completed two firsts while on the Whole30-like program.

The first First. Last night was my First night out with friends for food and drink.

I had a pretty bad day at work – running around, no breaks, unable to leave on time. I was exhausted, I was cranky and I could not participate in the sweet treats hanging around the office that everyone else was indulging in in order to deal with their day. I was late to join friends for a birthday celebration over pizza and beer and one of my favorite pizza places. I could forego the pizaa, but I REALLY wanted a beer. I really really wanted one. REALLY.

But while my mind’s “Party” personality tried to justify it (come on it’s only one drink; it won’t hurt you; you’ve had a rough day and deserve it; you’ll feel better and since you haven’t had a drink all week maybe you will even get a buzz and kill the negative energy from the day), the “Good Girl” personality kept me in line (it’s a slippery slope – you’ll break your will power and want one tomorrow; mentally you’ll regret breaking the rules because you set a goal for yourself you did not achieve; you’ll feel the alcohol the next day and ruin this great feeling you have been feeling). Luckily my “Good Girl” side won.

I am such a girl scout, always prepared. I knew how my mind worked so I had planned in advance for this. I had packed my avocado/banana/chocolate pudding for myself so while they indulged in pizza, beer, wine, broccoli with parmesan, a kale cesar with vinegar, cookies and ice cream, I ate my pudding. And order a bottle of sparkling water. And both were so very satisfying without the guilt. Sure I could have eaten what was available and chose the best option (the program is not trying to starve me) but I just did not want to activate my taste buds and slide down that slippery slope. And honestly I wasn’t that hungry due to stress. But the the key to avoid succumbing to the alcohol and sweets was planning ahead, and honestly not staying too late, otherwise my resolve may have wavered.

The second First.

A last minute day trip for work to San Francisco was scheduled. This was going to be my first day of travel while staying strict on the Whole30-like challenge. I had to book the first flight out and I had to work late last night (after I returned back from the party)..which once again meant I was not going to get enough sleep. And I was going to one of my favorite cities for food.

From the moment I exit the gate at SFO I am greeted by a healthy stand called The Plant – very healthy, but not compliant if I don’t eat legumes or quinoa. Then I was going to be at my client site which has the most amazing cafeteria (It has been ranked one of best cafeterias in selection of healthy foods). In that cafeteria, you can choose from the taqueria, the whole wheat thin crust pizza area, the asian food bar, the salad bar with great bread and cheese, the dessert bar, and soooo much more. It is so very tasty and not that unhealthy and very well subsidized. But it is not compliant as a veghead tackling Whole30.

I knew I had to enter the cafeteria with my client and team, but I knew that I would be able to avoid temptations if I had my own food options. So again, I planned. I prepped a breakfast, lunch and snacks for myself: hard boiled eggs and chia pudding with raspberry and coconut for breakfast, cauliflower rice and SeaSnax for lunch, banana for a snack. In the morning I made a bulletproof coffee before I left. I ordered a tea (no milk or sugar) on the plane. And when in the cafeteria – so I could participate with my client, I made myself a salad from the salad bar with some hard boiled egg and ate it with my cauliflower rice. On the way back through the airport, I got a protein smoothie at the Plant – hemp powder, fresh made almond butter, banana and blue berry but because their milk was just sugared almond or coconut milk, I asked them to use water instead. It was not as rich or frothy as milk would have been, but it was good enough.

I survived my first Firsts! Despite the challenge of craving everything around me, I managed to stick to the plan. And all it took was planning and while planning does take some time, it is worth the effort. I am not relying on food/protein bar, smoothies and handfuls of nuts as main meals. Eating real food through the day does make a difference.

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