Let it be said before I start handing out advice that I have already failed Paleo challenge round two by conventional standards. I have “successfully” completed one whole30 challenge. I put successful in quotes because I was at the time a little lax with the “sugar” rule. Don’t get me wrong, I cut out a crap ton of sugar in that first challenge but I did allow almond butter, honey in my tea and a chai tea every now and then. Other then that it was no sugar and no dessert. I also did not incorporate as many vegetables as I would have liked. Regardless of these slight imperfections those thirty days were life changing for me!! I had increased energy, felt rested and just overall better.
After, the whole30 I kept many of the gains that I had a acquired. I was eating cleaner and with less sugar then I ever have, that was until I went to Hawaii. While I ate healthier in Hawaii then I would have in the past, the trip was still filled with frozen alcoholic drinks and desserts. After coming back from Hawaii despite my many efforts I kept slipping back into the jaws of the sugar monster. So naturally when my gym offered a Paleo challenge I jumped on board. I think that it is always easier to stick with something if there are other folks around you not only encouraging you but are “suffering” right along with you. I would have never it made it through the thirty days the first time around without my husband’s support. It also helped immensely that he did the thirty days with me. Every time, I wanted to sneak a piece of chocolate I would think of my husband. The same thing was true with the Paleo challenge at my gym. I actually didn’t even know which individuals from my gym were participating in the Paleo challenge. Just the fact that I knew other people were challenging themselves along side me was enough to increase both my motivation and discipline to myself.
If you are hell bent on making a change and sticking with it then I suggest finding someone else that wants to make a similar change as you. If not in person use the internet. Having someone else that you are accountable to will do wonders in moving you in the direction that you want.
When I embark on something new I always try to set goals for myself. My goals for this strict Paleo challenge was to in fact do absolutely no sugar and to incorporate as many vegetables as possible.
I was doing fantastic at first, I could tell by my crankiness for the first week without sugar…my husband could tell as well….haha. Everything was going as planned until I went out town and then I went out of town again and then again. This is where things fell apart for me. There were so many variables that were out of my control and I didn’t plan for any of them. Woops!! Lesson learned. I know that in the future when I am traveling home that I need to bring health snacks. Rest stops have few if any Paleo friendly snacks. I also know that I have to have a meal plan when I get to my family in New Jersey especially if I arrive hungry after dinner hours and grocery store hours. Failing to plan is planning to fail.
The ultimate down fall to this Paleo challenge was going to Portland. The town is know for being a foodie city. It was a conscious choice to break some rules….some not all. One of those was going to Voodoo Donuts.
My husband holding the box of deliciousness!!
Apparently, you can not go to Portland without trying these donuts. Also….I love hard cider and they just had so many choices that we don’t have on the east coast like cherry cider that I couldn’t resist!!! um amazing. I am not sure if I am ever going to be back to Portland so I wanted to make sure that I got the full experience. To be honest it was worth it!!! While I am out of the Paleo Challenge at my gym…..the weeks of clean eating up to the Portland trip have once again allowed me to easily pass up cupcakes and donuts. I am eating less sugary foods then I was eating before and more vegetables so I consider myself a winner. If you are searching for perfection you will always be sadly disappointed in yourself. Perfection is ever elusive. If you let your disappointment keep you from trying altogether then that is the only way you can really fail. If you celebrate your successes no matter how small then you will find over time you will achieve much more then you ever thought possible.