We first read Hilarie’s story while simultaneously planning our #IAMWHOLE30 Instagram campaign and fielding a ton of interview requests from mainstream media, all of whom were asking about the Whole30 weight loss benefits. Her tale was a breath of fresh air, music to our ears… because the scale played absolutely zero role in her Whole30 success. And boy, was she successful.
So read, and be inspired. Follow us on Instagram and tag your own experience as #Whole30 or #IAmWhole30. And if you need to, remind yourself there are 174,203 ways to measure health without the scale.
I could go on and on about how my first Whole30 helped me through a lot of health issues I was experiencing (and how they are not issues anymore), but I think you’ve heard that story before. The first Whole30 was only the beginning. This time I wanted to take it up a notch, feed my body like a machine, to enhance muscle composition and my ability to perform.
Because of years and years of society’s obsession with scales and the message that weight loss = health, my first instinct when I stepped on the scale this morning and saw the exact same number as pre-Whole30 was discouragement. But then I heard my bootcamp instructor’s voice in my ear from yesterday’s workout: “Yes! Hilarie, looking like an ATHLETE!”
I realized that I had, indeed, accomplished my goal… even if the number on the scale didn’t budge.
Never in my dreams did I think I could average almost an 8-minute mile in an 8K race (cold turkey), and place 16th out of 150 women, many of whom run these things all the time. But I did it! I saw improvement in my flexibility and strength over the course of a few Bikram yoga classes. I was holding poses I couldn’t get into just two months ago. On average, I’m picking up 10-15 pound dumbbells at bootcamp when I used to rely on the 5-8 pounders. Whatever the highest level of modification is demonstrated for each exercise, I’m at least trying it, if not doing it the whole time.
I can see my body reshaping, especially around the obliques, hips, buttocks, and upper thighs – all places that used to be my trouble spots. I enter my exercise routines with my game face on and push hard the entire time because I have the energy to do it. My body is working for me these days, not the other way around.
So, while I’m still 148lbs, (a pound heavier than I was when I finished my first Whole30), I can fit into smaller sizes. I can lift more. I can go longer and harder. I can see that I’ve gained more muscle and a beast mode focus when it comes to my fitness program, and that makes this a successful second Whole30 for me.
People have asked me, “Why bother doing another one? You look great and are eating a paleo diet anyway.” I think the pictures speak for themselves! Every Whole30 you do is different. My motivation the second time around was completely different because I am in a different place in my life and can always stand to improve. Besides the gains I achieved on a fitness level this time around, the acceptance of this lifestyle from my family (including two kids who are 3 and 5) makes doing this program multiple times worth it a hundred times over.
And if that’s not enough, I just discovered a message on our answering machine where my 5-year-old is telling his Daddy to stop at the store on the way home and pick up “foods that I like, like pineapple, and go down the vegetable aisle to get broccoli for roasted broccoli and cauliflower because I like that too.” Seriously?! No mention of crackers, granola bars, pizza, fruit snacks, or any of the other crap that kids tend to request. What a transformation from just a few months ago. I am one proud mom!
Do you have a non-scale Whole30 victory to report? Send us your story! Post photos and a short synopsis to Instagram (and tag @whole30/#whole30), or email your write-up and pictures to us at [email protected].