When you’re trying something new, even if it’s just for 30 days, you can have a lot of ups and downs. There are endless things that can help, and an equal (if not greater) number of things that can set you back or make you think like you should probably just quit. Now that I’m finally done with my Whole30, I can look back and see what was really helpful during the process and what was, umm, less helpful. There are lists like this all over the internet, but here are my tips and tricks for surviving your very own Whole30!
Meal plan your heart out!!! Knowing what you plan on eating will help SO MUCH! You’ll get excited about the food you’re going to eat, which can help you stay on track. I usually try to plan out my entire Whole30 meal plan at the beginning knowing that I can always change it if need be.
Make a grocery list and stick to it. Seriously. Write down every little thing you need and don’t even look at the other stuff. It will make you sad to walk past the fresh tortillas and the donut holes and the frozen pizza. Yes, I’m very much speaking from experience, here.
Meal prep like your life depends on it. Your success sure does. I made ALL my meals for the week on Sundays and just had them ready in the fridge or freezer. It was nice to not have to cook as much during the week when I was already tired from work.
Get rid of the best junk you’ve got. If you haven’t exercised your willpower in a while, just get rid of whatever might tempt you. Throw it away, give it away, or have a friend hold on to it until you’re done. Out of sight, out of mind.
Have good snacks on hand and ready. Hopefully you’ll be filling up on good food and you won’t need to snack, but better safe than sorry. If you have carrot sticks or apple slices or almonds on hand and ready, you won’t feel the need to get that Snickers bar from the vending machine.
Use the buddy system. The Whole30 can be hard and tiring and kind of lonely if you’re doing it alone… so force ask a friend politely if they’ll do it with you! I forced asked a friend politely to do it with me here in Dallas and it was so nice to be able to complain, swap recipes, and complain some more together. I also had 2 friends doing it in other states, so we got to complain together over text, too. There was also some encouragement, too, I should add.
Read the book. I guess technically you don’t have to, but it will definitely help get your mind in the right state if this is your first time doing Whole30. Or even if it’s your 14th time, I bet you’ll still be glad to read the reasoning why you can’t eat peanut butter for a whole month.
Get a cookbook. There are specific ones out there with ONLY Whole30 recipes, and that can be super helpful! I got a paleo cookbook and modified some of the recipes to be Whole30 compliant (but I probably wouldn’t recommend trying to do that if this is your first go-round. It can be tricky and VERY tempting to see recipes with things you can’t have!)
Get on Pinterest! Have an account? Great! Don’t have an account? Get one! There are THOUSANDS upon THOUSANDS of Whole30 recipes on that thing. I made a secret Pinterest board and shoved all the recipes I wanted to try in there for easy access.
Make a countdown calendar. Specifically one to track the days you’ve completed so far. Seeing all the days I’d rocked it thus far kept me motivated to complete the remaining days!
Make a list of all the reasons you wanted to do this crazy experiment in the first place. Maybe you want to lose a bit of weight, or clear up the acne that just won’t go away, or see if you can have better quality sleep, or relieve some weird stomach pain you’ve been living with for way too long, or even just to see if you can stick to something for 30 days straight. Whatever your reasons, physically write them out and keep them visible!
And there you have it – I think I’ve finally said everything I can think of about doing the Whole30! If you’ve done one (or attempted to do one) before, what tips and tricks worked best for you?