Whole30 – Tales of the Grocery Store

By | August 28, 2012

Alright. So I decided I was going to follow the Whole30 program, and I read the book – It Starts with Food (see yesterday’s blog post for more details). I understood most of the chemical, hormonal, body-processing-functions, and knew I wanted to get my body back functioning how it was meant to function – without chemical, processed crap.

But actually coming up with a plan?

It was really hard to wrap my mind around the food plan – meat, veggies, some fruit, healthy fats. How in the world would I buy groceries and plan meals around this program? Thankfully, the book had a lot of “meal starter” ideas – and the “base” for each meal was meat and veggies. Meat and veggies – I can do that. Add healthy fat and seasoning to make it taste differently…. I can do that.

So, I made a list. I thought about foods I liked to eat – and foods I knew Jay would eat. I thought about how complex recipes were, and what would keep in the fridge for a few days.

I made a list.

Next, Jay and I cleaned out the fridge. We THREW AWAY EVERYTHING we weren’t going to eat in the next 30 days.

Goodbye, processed food.

I was still feeling pretty excited about the Whole30 program. That is, until I stepped foot into the grocery store. Despite having my list and my meals planned, I WAS GRIPPED WITH HORROR. Almost every single thing being sold on the shelves was processed, chemical “food”.

(I say food with ” ‘s because, let’s face it, Cheeze-Its are not “real food”.)

I felt like I was being eaten alive in that grocery store. One wrong mis-step, and I could be shoveling bags of chips and packages of cookies into my cart, running wild through the aisles. I knew I needed to pay attention and ONLY buy what I planned to buy. But it was terrifying – changing my entire food plan, my entire shopping experience, and the actual food I bought was so incredibly different.

Fish = Grocery Store. Eating me alive.

I’m so thankful that Jay and I are going through this together. Having him by my side, excited about making positive changes…. it really made a big difference. We stuck to our list, and made it home with everything we needed: produce, meat, dairy, tea, seasonings, and some “extra” fun non-food items…

Fruit & Veggies

Veggies & Fruit


Coconut Milk, Butter and Eggs


Seasoning, Oil & Vinegar, Olives

Thumb-Bowls, Egg Container, Tea Box, Plates & Bowls, New Lunch Bag

Looking back, I don’t know why I was so gripped with fear at the grocery store. Maybe it was knowing the changes ahead – not simply changing my food, but changing my habits, my emotions, and my reactions to situations. Maybe I knew this project had the potential to be SO MUCH BIGGER and SO MUCH BETTER than I imagined.

After I got home from the grocery store, I realized that instead of feeling like a barbie being eaten by a fish, I felt more like a barbie being healthy, claiming her life back instead.

hay gurrrll, hay.

Up next? I’ll talk about what specifically I made…. and what I’m eating!

7 thoughts on “Whole30 – Tales of the Grocery Store

  1. Lynsey

    Good for you! I wish I could get my husband on board because I hate making 2 seperate meals. I always get the “I’m not the one trying to lose weight” speech when all I really want to do is teach the girls healthy eating habits NOW before it’s too late. It’s not always about weight loss! Ugh!

  2. Jessica

    I am in the middle of this book and really like it. I also do CrossFit and am training for a marathon so I really want to eat/be as healthy as possible. Our CrossFit box is having a Whole30 type challenge and I won the last one but didn’t really understand the ‘why’ of eating and how it affected me and now that we are starting a new challenge I would like to go into it with the knowledge I need to make this a lifestyle and not just a way to win a competition!
    I think you will do great and I am excited to see how it goes. Good Luck!

  3. Liz

    I look forward to hearing all about this! Congratulations on a good grocery store trip

  4. Carrisa @ G-Free Runner

    Good job with that grocery store visit and staying strong! After being diagnosed with celiac disease, my first trip to the grocery store was a disaster. I started reading the backs of boxes and looking closely at ingredients and had absolutely no idea what any of it meant. After about 40 minutes I had two things in my cart, which I then left at the check out and just walked out crying because I was so overwhelmed! Making lists helped, feeling prepared helped…and eventually it got easier and became second nature! After 30 days this is going to feel very natural to you! Can’t wait to read about those recipes!

  5. Linda @ Lemons

    Sounds like a great book, I’m going to check it out. I think it is so wonderful that your husband and you are doing this together, you can be great supports for each other. No one in my house eats the way I do and I wish they would adopt even a little of my healthy habits, but I’ve learned that I can’t push them, they have to want to do it. So I eat my veggies and watch them eating their pizza and ribs and burritos, etc. I happen to love the grocery store, it’s one of my favorite places! I know, I’m weird.

  6. Manda

    I remember that feeling. It feels scary because there’s so much to know, so many habits and desires to break, and it’s just plain old WORK to give ourselves the love and attention we (and our bodies) deserve. I’m glad you’re discovering just how much is lacking in the realm of real, honest-to-goodness food. Happy discovering!

  7. Pingback: Whole30 – DAY 30!!!! | Twelve in Twelve

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