Saturday, January 19, 2013

Whole30 - Day 18

It's another Saturday morning! I love going to bed Friday night knowing I don't have to wake up to an alarm. I awoke just before 8am and felt well-rested. I started thinking about breakfast. I'm at a loss for breakfast meals other than eggs w/ veggies and/or leftover meat. I really need some variety (this goes for post-Whole30 as well).

I did some searching for Whole30 banana pancakes (because I have an entire bunch of ripe bananas). I know, I know. Pancakes should not be made on Whole30. Dallas and Melissa of Whole30 even wrote up an article about not "paleo-fying" junk foods with approved ingredients. Well, I'm here to tell Dallas and Melissa that lifestyles aren't an end-all-be-all for everyone. I'm going on another rant about the Whole30 community. Everything I used in my breakfast today is considered Whole30. I am sick of eggs for breakfast everyday. When I have time to make other foods, I want to make them. I have gotten a grasp over my sugar addiction already. I'm almost to the 21-day mark which is the timeline to make or break a habit. 

I started living The Paleo Lifestyle for Athletes in June 2012 while training for Ironman Canada. We would eat non-optimal foods after our long weekend workouts (anything over 3 hours - typically after 60+ mile bike rides and 20-mile runs) within the time window of the duration of our workout. For example, if we worked out for 5 hours, then we would have 5 hours immediately following our workout to replenish our glycogen stores (with non-optimal foods, if we wished). Anyways, that transitioned into an 80-90% Paleo Lifestyle after our Ironman in August. We would eat a partially non-Paleo meal once or, occasionally, twice per week. Those non-Paleo meals would be meals eaten outside of the home (either restaurants or social events). Since I've been following Paleo for quite a bit of time, I have no interest returning to the Standard American Diet (SAD). I know how grains, dairy, legumes and processed foods make me feel. I also know how awesome I feel when I eat meats, fruits and veggies. I can handle some nuts and seeds, more if they are soaked to reduce the phytic acid, tannins and enzyme inhibitors. If I don't soak them, I tend to have gut irritation. 

With all the above being said, doing a Whole30 challenge was a mere step from my Paleo lifestyle. The only thing I was cutting out was the baked goods, laden with honey, maple syrup or coconut sugar. I've also had to scrutinize food labels for any type of sugar. I believe that strictness in preparation (even for 30 days) can create negative thoughts towards something. If this type of lifestyle is going to be sustainable beyond the 30 days, I have to have some flexibility in foods and the way they are prepared. Coconut flour pancakes are not going to make me run out to IHOP to get regular pancakes. That's because I have given up the grains and dairy. I have no interest in the non-Paleo versions of "junk foods". I would rather eat the Paleo versions because they taste so much better to me. My Paleo pizza and lasagna recipes are 100 times better than their SAD counterparts. Paleo pancakes are the same for me. Just because I ate Paleo pancakes for breakfast today doesn't make me crave anything else. I won't condone making pancakes to everyone doing a Whole30 because some of you may have more emotional and/or physical obstacles to overcome. Some of you may have cut out caffeine, grains, dairy, legumes, processed foods and soy products, etc (all at once) to do a Whole30. That comes with a lot more baggage, in my opinion. Cutting out caffeine alone can cause headaches and comfort food cravings. For some people, there is a fine line to follow. Any stray from that line could be a slippery slope. You have to use your discretion based on what you know about yourself. What I eat on my Whole30 may not work for you.

Moving on. I suggested going on a hike today because the weather was gorgeous. 60 degrees and blue skies. We started our hike from Golden and ended close to the top of Lookout Mountain. It took us 59 minutes to hike to the little parking lot near the top. To get up to the Nature Center, we probably would have hiked an additional 20-25 minutes. It was a solid hike. We both noticed that we're not in Ironman shape like we were the last time we hiked that trail. It was definitely a great workout. There were a lot of others taking advantage of the mild weather. Mountain bikers, runners and other hikers on the trail. On the road leading up to Lookout Mountain had a lot of road cyclists and skateboarders. Yes, we saw many skateboarders go flying down the road in excess of 20 mph. Absolutely nuts.

Breakfast: Coconut flour banana pancakes with warm almond butter and strawberry puree (simply blended strawberries in my Magic Bullet. 
Lunch; We ate our snacks/lunch at our turnaround near the top of Lookout Mountain. We each ate a banana, roasted cashews, a Larabar and a handful of Flax Snax. 
Dinner: As I was making dinner, I ate half a banana muffin. For dinner, I made some amazing chicken burgers w/ baked yam (aka sweet potato) fries. Here's how I made the chicken burgers: 1.3 pounds of ground chicken breast mixed with one egg, 1 1/2 T. Dijon mustard, 3 minced garlic cloves, ~1 t. dried sage, ~1 t. dried rosemary, 1/4 cup almond meal and salt & pepper (to taste). I made three patties (though you could easily make four), dipped them in additional almond meal and cooked them in a bit of olive & grapeseed oils. I was trying to imitate a breaded chicken sandwich (sort of). I sauteed a sliced onion and diced portobello mushrooms in another pan. To assemble: put a couple handfuls of baby spinach on the plate; top with a burger, onions, mushrooms, sliced tomato and a few slices of avocado. Add a dollop of Lemonaise to the very top. Best way to eat is to mix it all together. The warm burger will wilt some of the spinach. This meal was amazing! It was definitely hard to capture all the layers with my iPhone camera. Trust me when I say you should make this. 

After eating and cleaning up the kitchen, I cracked open a new flavor of Kombucha. Gingerberry. Love at first sip. 

I'm finally relaxing in the recliner before going to bed soon. I have a 7-mile run tomorrow (late morning/midday to allow the temps to warm up). I will probably do some food prep as well (cleaning/chopping veggies). 

What are your plans for your Sunday? 

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