We Did It! Our Whole30 Experience

When my prized pair of skinny jeans absolutely wouldn’t zip… and I seriously couldn’t find one outfit apart from yoga pants that I felt comfortable in, I knew I had to make a change. Here’s the real truth though: I’m great at working out – I love taking new classes and going for runs. But when it came to eating, last year, I made some pretty awful choices… over and over again.

Now, I’m not beating myself up too much – but instead of just going on some diet, I wanted to do something that would really, truly make a difference in my life. I didn’t want to stay on a diet for the rest of my life, but I needed a lifestyle kick to put my habits back into check, changes my cravings and get my portion control back on track.

My lovely roommate, Christina, had a brilliant idea: let’s do Whole30 together!

Pre-Whole 30!

Pre-Whole 30!

For those of you who are unfamiliar – Whole30 cuts out refined/processed sugar, dairy, gluten, grains, legumes and booze. After the 30 days are complete, you gradually add back in those things to see how your body responds – that way you know what’s good for you and what’s not really compatible with your digestive system.

We’ve both learned so much and seen so many changes in how we feel and look. See some recipes, our inches and weight loss, before/after photos and advice:

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16 Reasons Your Mom is the Most Important Woman in Your Life

I'm thankful for getting to enjoy Paris with my mama.

I’m thankful for getting to enjoy Paris with my mama.

As a 26-year-old single gal, I occasionally have difficulty imagining what the next decade of my life might hold: finally meeting a man I love, marrying him, and eventually having children. My mom married my dad at 25, welcomed me at 27 and for the last few decades, spent her life making sure I had the best, most loving life ever. From being my personal cheerleader to my European drinking buddy, I’m amazed every single day by the strength, love and wit that my mom effortlessly brings to my world. If you’re lucky like me, your mom holds a pretty big piece of your heart and and a pretty big chunk of data in your phone plan.

So without further adieu, your mom is the most important woman in your life because…

1. She encourages you to always carry lipstick, gum and a pen.
I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a little girl and when I declared this to my mom she said, “You better put a pen in your purse, then!” As I got older, she also suggested I always carry gum (you never know who you’ll talk to) and lipstick (you never know who you’ll want to impress). All three of these things are with me as I type this.

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6 Reasons You’re More Badass Than You Think

Quick: When you woke up this morning and looked in the mirror, did you say something nice or start criticizing flaws? In that work meeting you led a few weeks ago, did you pat yourself on the back, or nitpick every little detail?

When you’re always trying to improve, it’s easy to get caught up in a self-confidence spiral. But here’s the thing: According to several studies, the stories we tell ourselves directly contribute to our happiness level and day-to-day satisfaction.

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My First Week of Whole30, as Told in GIFS

My roommate and I both wanted to make a big difference in our health and lifestyle this year, so we challenged ourselves to do Whole30 – a program that cuts out sugar, booze (which duh is sugar), carbs (except in veggies), legumes (aka, beans) and dairy. I knew it wasn’t going to be an easy thing to do, but after a year of overindulging in just about anything I laid my eyes on, I was ready to shed some weight and feel vibrant again.

We’re officially a week in (today is day 9 to be exact) and I do feel really, really awesome. I have so much energy, I sleep better, my skin is clearer and I actually crave carrots and green beans as a snack. (Yeah, I know, it’s weird!).

Even so, this week hasn’t been simple – and I’m sure the three weeks that I have left won’t be either – but I’m excited to see how much of a difference it will make to curve my cravings and shape my lifestyle. Though I haven’t weighed myself or measured (they advise not to until the end) – I already can tell a difference in the way my clothes fit.

If you’re thinking of making a shift in your diet or exercise habits… here’s how my first week of Whole30 has been… in GIFs:

Woohoo! Grocery shopping for healthy things. Look at all these pretty veggies. I’m SO excited. 


Holy moly. I can’t believe that’s how much I weigh. I’ve never been more ready for a cleanse…


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My Word of the Year for 2015 Is… (Hint: It’s Not ‘Love’)

Last year, I decided I wasn’t going to make resolutions anymore. Not because I don’t believe in making positive changes or giving up vices, but because it’s really hard to live by a set of rules – in life, in dating, in anything. So my mom made a great suggestion: just pick a word.

So, last year, I picked: ‘yes.’

And wow – did I wear that word out! In any situation where I would normally turn my head or turn something down, I decided to jump in. I had one more drink. I went on another trip. I booked another fitness class. I ran another half-marathon. I moved apartments and doubled my rent. I changed jobs so I could be at a company that I truly believed in. I bought that Kate Spade wallet (cough, on sale) that I really, really wanted. I wrote things from my heart that I usually wouldn’t have admitted. I gained weight because I overindulged in mostly anything. More than any of the other years – probably combined – I truly, 100 percent lived.

2014 was really the year I went for it – and in 2015, I’m going to learn to be excited about everything I’ve found, created, mastered, tried and loved the past few years. Generally speaking, I’m a pretty positive person, but just like anyone else, I can get in some really, really bad downward-spiraling-out-of-control ruts where I feel like nothing will ever work out how I so badly want it to. And maybe because of my wild sense of ambition… I’m never really satisfied with where I am.

But I want to be content with today. Right now. This moment. This half-hour that I sit here with coffee, listening to jazz and writing this blog. I want to find peace in the present and … thrilled with all of the things that I’m thankful for.

From friendships and my health to dating and my career, here are the ways I’m going to make ‘happy’ my word of the year for 2015:

A happy body.
As hard as is it is to type this (and thus, making it real to me): I’ve gained nearly 15 pounds in a year. I suppose I’m lucky in the fact that it usually doesn’t show (too much) on me, but I can tell in my clothes. And my face. And in how I feel when I’m standing naked in front of the mirror. I’ve been putting off changing my diet and limiting those late-nights out for fear that it would be impossible to go on dates or be social with my friends, but I made the decision to change my lifestyle for myself. Until I feel healthy and happy about the way I look and feel, I won’t be able to exude confidence like I used to. I’m training for my third half-marathon in April, and I started the Whole30 Food Challenge yesterday, and I’m signed up for 6+ fitness classes this week – wish me luck!

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