The other day I was on Instagram, and the main Whole30 page posted a question: “What is one thing you’re doing to make your Whole30 a little bit easier?”
There were hundreds and hundreds of comments. I’m sure at this point, there are thousands. I went through the 300+ that were there when I read it, and these 5 Whole30 tips were repeated over and over again:
- Meal Prep. This is an obvious one, sure, but it was also the most common. It’s like that old saying, “Fail to plan, plan to fail.” The thing with Whole30 is you’re eating a LOT of food (you’ll be surprised how hungry you are!) and if you’re not ready for that, you get caught with nothing made in a pinch, find yourself paying the pizza delivery man, and telling yourself you’ll start again tomorrow.
- Food Prep. Yes, it’s different than meal prep! For food prep, you’re not making meals, you’re just prepping ingredients. So, you might spend a couple of hours on Sunday baking some sweet potatoes, cooking up some meat in the crockpot, and chopping fresh veggies. Then, during the week, you can go in and make different combinations so you don’t get bored!
- Sauces. This is so me. I am all about some sauce. Having homemade sauces on hand is awesome – you know what went in them, and they taste sooo much better than store bought. Ketchup, ranch, mayo – if I can make it, I will. I have a sauce problem. Really though, it adds flavor and texture to your food.
- Seltzer water. This was mentioned in various forms – mocktails, club soda with a lime or lemon, La Croix. But really, it’s the option for bubbles, and to have something with flavor other than plain old water. I love the Spindrift brand because it uses real fruit, but isn’t sweet.
- Dishes. This was mentioned a lot, and with good reason – on Whole30, the dishes get OUTTA CONTROL. For real, they like multiply and make baby dishes while you are sleeping at night or something. A lot of people mentioned staying on top of the dishes, cleaning as they go with meal prep, and making sure the kitchen stays tidy as ways to help keep them organized, and I can’t say I disagree.
Now, five Whole30 tips is a great start, but let’s be real- we’ve got 30 days of this, so I wanted to share some of the other great comments I found. Other things that made the top of the list were “self-care” (pedicures, massages, sleep, etc), Ziplock bags and parchment paper, sharing meal prep with a friend, journaling, meal planning in a spreadsheet, and staying busy with house projects, or just staying busy in general. But my favorite of all the comments was this one:
“Saying “I’m not” vs “I can’t” seems to make things easier mentally and doesn’t annoy my family as much. Like, “I’m not having cheese” vs “I can’t have cheese” — something less negative about the first!”
So true. When you tell someone you’re making a CHOICE to not have something, they usually look at you funny, but leave you alone. If you tell them you can’t have something, they want to know why, what for, how come, have just one, it won’t hurt. I’d much rather express that I’m making a choice for me and my body to do a Whole30, and that my choice is my choice, thank you very much. You do you.
I’ll leave you with that thought, and a sampling of some of the other great comments on the post. I’ve spared you the reading of all 300+ and pulled a handful for motivation, ideas, or just to realize you’re not alone in your Whole30 journey. What’s your favorite Whole30 tip or trick? Leave it in the comments!
Meal prep! I can’t do this without having good foods prepared and ready for when our family gets home from work and school!
meal planning…. but a close 2nd is lots of self care. Pedicure, a massage, lots of walks, home facials etc….
Ziploc bags and parchment paper get the gold star!
Flavored tea ???
Pre-cut veggies from @traderjoes and embracing simplicity!
Making a huge batch of compliant soup for my work lunches all week!
Not running out of food….shopping and prepping ahead of time.
Honestly? No portion control and no restriction on when I wanna eat. It’s whatever I want, when I want, as long as it’s whole30 approved.
Meals on re-re-re-repeat.
Made a big vat of chili and froze it in meal sized portions so there’s always something to eat in a pinch!!!
Fresh herbs are the key to making your meals still taste as delicious as you remember them. And eggs/avocados really do help with my longing for cheese in my foods – they add a creaminess that you can’t get otherwise that’s really comforting! ?
This sounds inane, but we’re trying to get in the habit of doing dishes morning and evening so we don’t always feel like the kitchen has imploded every day.
Meal Prep. Sweet potato. Exercise. More water. ????
I’m doing the Whole30 with two work buds and it’s amazing! Not only do we keep each other accountable, but we also take turns bringing in lunch for each other. It’s the best. The. Best.
Definitely by washing dishes as I cook (as much as possible)
Knowing I will feel better! That keeps me going and seeing all the creative ideas of others
Multitasking!! I toss some sweet potatoes in the oven while cooking breakfast, Pressure cook a whole chicken for lunches while we are eating dinner and chop some veggies while watching Netflix! I always keep some fun compliant hot tea on hand when a craving creeps up. It really helps!! Food prep is really the most important!! Making a fun sauce for the week is great too! If I start to get bored I make spicy avocado mayo or something similar!
This round I’ve been doing ingredient prep instead of meal prep which has been very helpful. During previous rounds I found myself getting burned out on meals so it helps to have ingredients prepped and then I can turn them into whatever I’m in the mood for that day.
Compliant mayo ??????
Two words: crock. pot.
Remember that you have the rest of your life to eat non-compliant foods if you decide that they’re worth it. For the remainder of this @whole30, you’re choosing your health and how you feel.
Club soda w lemon or lime ???
I make extra of the meals I know I love so they are on hand and easy to grab and eat.
Having pre chopped veggies makes prepping dinner super quick and hard boiled eggs make breakfast portable for days I’m in a rush
Meal prepping every Sunday and looking up new recipes to add more variety!
Actually making and sticking to grocery lists!
When making a meal, I always make extra to ensure I have leftovers for times I’m to tired to cook or need something fast so I have no excuses to cheat. ?
Focusing on what I CAN have and not dwelling on what I can’t have.
Chopping and storing frequent flier veggies – onions, peppers, celery, tomatoes, etc. – it helps make cooking during the week less of a to-do, and SO MANY LESS dishes somehow, even with the added Tupperware ?
RxBars and Beef Sticks. I couldn’t get through a Whole30 without a few supplemental snacks during the day and these are more calorie dense than individual fruit or vegetables.
Parchment paper! So happy I have it! Herbal tea in the evenings, Lara bars I can throw in my purse, cooking large portions of food at a time and googling “before and after whole30” to stay motivated !
Lots of trips to the grocery store ??
Every night I am taking journaling seriously and writing about my little victories for the day. I feel like it helps me reaffirm why I am in this and reiterate the good it’s doing for my body. The mental part of this is harder than the physical, in my opinion, and I think you have to keep your head prepped as much as your food.
Hot sauce and avocado. I have one or both in every meal and I don’t know what I’d do with out them. And honey crisp apples with almond butter. It’s super sweet, but doesn’t feel like a dessert, and sometimes all the meat makes me feel heavy so I like to lighten it up with a fruit meal.
Pinterest for meal ideas and Trader Joes for alot of compliant food in one stop.
Having a number of compliant mayos, vinegrettes, sauces and all the pico de gallo to throw on meats and veggies.
Hard boiling eggs! I boil a dozen on Sunday. So great to have on hand for snacks, salad toppings or an easy lunch when my meal planning falls apart.
Using an excel spreadsheet, I Plan a 3 meal a day menu for a 2 week period and make my grocery list at the same time on all the same spreadsheet. I print it out and take it with me to the grocery store so I am certain not to forget anything. This also helps the budget!
I would say not going out to eat definitely makes it easier. It gives me less opportunity to make a bad food choice and eliminates the temptation. And I save sooo much money in the process too. ???
Primal Foods mayo, Tessamae’s dressing and ketchup.
I love making a list on the fridge if what I can eat for snacks, plus the meal plan for the whole month. It’s fun to cross if days on the calendar too!
Surrounding myself with positive messages and healthy food pages. Seeing healthy food pics in your newsfeed is so helpful!
Less temptation equals higher success. No restaurant and no social gatherings I can avoid. I know you can survive and still go out but making it easy on ourselves at the initial part of this!
I’ve given myself time this week to rest! I’ve gone to bed earlier than usual every night and have even taken some naps….the extra rest has helped me a lot!!
Eating leftovers from dinner for lunch the next day. It’s so nice to not have to think about lunch!
Have meat thawed and pre-cook meat. If the meat is ready it’s just easier to throw in veggies.
Hand writing myself notes and sticking them on the fridge to stay focused. E.g. – You’ve done harder things, It’s only 30 days, Don’t you dare give up, 100% is easier than 99%.
Cleaning out the fridge, pantry and freezer made a HUGE difference.
Stay busy with house projects.
Appreciating each bite of every food I choose- everything that crosses my lips with full of nutrients I need, so why stress about ratios, macronutrients, high carb, low carb blah blah blah.
Spending time with others also doing the Whole30.