Welcome to February, the second month of the year, but still the beginning. I love the start of a new year because as we flip the calendar we begin to believe in our best selves again. We see the possibilities of who we can become this year if we just stick to our goals.
But here we are, one month into the year, in the month where goals tend to die. One of my goals this year focuses on my overall health. So I began 2019 participating in the Whole30 program.
For me, this was not a fast or a diet; it was a reset. I gave my body 30 days to cleanse itself and heal from the negative impact of certain food groups. For 30 days, I eliminated all grains, dairy, sugars, and legumes from my diet, and I want to share with you some insights I had during the 30 days.
Like any goal or diet, I was all gung ho at the beginning. I went to Sprouts and loaded up on vegetables, meats, dairy-free milks, and basically anything else I could stock my pantry and fridge with that was “Whole30 compliant,” a phrase that soon became a daily mantra. But then it hit me, the reality of going 30 whole days without my precious wheat and sugar. My energy, attitude, and overall disposition sunk lower than my blood sugar levels. I hadn’t had a really good meal that filled me up in what seemed like forever, and I was done. That’s when I looked at the calendar and realized it was only day 6; I had 24 more days to go.
I was tired of reading labels at the grocery store and asking restaurants what exactly their food was cooked with. I was tired of cooking foods that didn’t fill me up. I thought about quitting; I really did, but then I reminded myself why I started in the first place and decided to keep going.
I woke up on day 12 or 13 and started feeling different. My energy levels were higher than usual. My attitude was joyful. Even my skin looked brighter and clearer. My feelings toward this program began to shift.
But, I would be lying to you if I said it was a breeze from day 13 to 30, because it wasn’t. My brother’s birthday was on day 18, and I was in charge of the cake. I made him a delicious Snickers-inspired cake and used all the self-control the Holy Spirit could give me not to taste it. I knew that one bite of the tempting cake would ruin the entire program for me. All the hard work, patience, and self-control I built-up would come crumbling down with just one bite; so I didn’t eat it.
The countdown to the end began, and I started planning what I would eat on day 31. But I soon realized I was missing the whole point of this program. It wasn’t just a 30-day body reset; it was a reset of the mind and outlook on food. I had never felt this good in my life, and I didn’t want to ruin it by impulse and craving. I decided around day 22 that I would continue this program, but my way.
If our bodies are His temple, then I want to be mindful of how I am treating it and what I am putting into it. No, I am not taking this to be a Whole365, but I am deciding to praise God with a healthy body. I encourage you to rethink what you are putting in your body and how you are praising God in your temple. It doesn’t have to be a drastic change like the Whole30 program requires, but little steps can make a huge difference in your overall health and praise.