Melissa headshot

Melissa G.

Cleveland, Ohio

Suddenly the impossible feels achievable.

About 3 years ago a dear friend told me about Whole30. My initial response was, absolutely not. But then I realized how tired I was and that my habits had spiraled out of control. So, I began a journey. I committed to taking better care of myself. I began voraciously reading about Whole30 online and scouring forums to figure out how I could make changes in my meals. I will never forget the moment I realized I was the Forrest Gump of cheese (cheese on my burger, cheese in my eggs, cheese on my pasta, cheese on my french fries and nachos, pizza…) ? hello food-with-no-brakes! I spent about 3 weeks reading, planning, shopping, and cooking before I readied myself to start my first round of Whole30. It changed my life. And it helped inspire others around me to try.

I’m always grateful for and humbled by the knowledge I gain after each Whole30. Suddenly the impossible feels achievable. I have been a lifetime member of the up and down yo-yo club. I have dealt with binge eating, shame eating, over exercising, couch potato syndrome, anxiety, depression. PCOS, thyroid issues, trauma scars. But I can say after this last round (maybe number 8?) I feel healthier than ever.

I exercised more in the last 30 days than I had in the prior 6 months. My skin is breaking out less. I know when I’m truly hungry. I know when I’m full AND I stop eating. I rediscovered flavors and seasonings I enjoy eating. I rediscovered my love for cooking. I engaged people at work to support me. I treated my body with respect and truly practiced self-care. I regained a sense of control over my own food choices. I reinforced that cheese is my gateway drug. I avoided the cycles of stress eating and shame. I fell asleep faster and I had the most vivid dreams! Alright often about food. I knew what I was eating, and stopped hanging around the fridge hoping something would jump out at me. I multitasked to optimize efficiency in so many other areas of my life. And sure, I lost 13 lbs. but really, that’s the least of what I’ve gained. I am Whole30.

Published by Nuala

Danielle Nuala Schoen (Nuala), lives amongst community in the mountains of western North Carolina. She is a massage therapist (LMBT) and RYT-200 yoga instructor with a background in social work. Nuala is passionate about redefining health and wellness in order to center the self-determination and self-actualization of each unique individual, and thereby, the actualization of the collective.Nuala enjoys ecstatic dance, contact improvisation, creek dips, travel, and sharing Whole30 meals with her loved ones.