The 30 Day Body Transformation Challenge is over and I have achieved what I thought was the unachievable – 30 days with no alcohol, no grains, no gluten, no packaged snacks, no lollies, no chocolate, no biscuits, no sweets, no dessert, minimal dairy, limited coffee.
Actually, I’d rather phrase it like this: 30 days of real, wholesome, nutrient-dense homemade food that was nourishing my body. No wonder Danielle Minnebo, the nutritionist behind the meal plans, called her business Food to Nourish. I feel like I really took care of my body, and my family’s bodies, this month. High fives all round.
Plus I had 30 Days of training at CrossFit Athletic in Brookvale. 30 Days of training like I never have before. 30 Days of doing every movement I’d ever avoided (burpees, anyone? 8 sets of sprints?) plus heaps more I’d never heard of (Turkish get ups, torsinator rows and froggies. Froggies? I think that one actually WAS made up).
I chose the holistic Female F.I.T. program. For me, this included 2 CrossFit training sessions at the gym and an additional outdoor training session each week, with structured and progressive weights and conditioning. And also a weekly yoga class, another first for me. The whole Female F.I.T. program felt a bit like CrossFit with a big hug and a warm smile. But still freakin hard work!
If you remember, I was a little bit of a reluctant participant and I actually did not have faith in myself to be able to stick to the meal plan or the courage to participate in the CrossFit training. But I surprised myself and this 30 Day Challenge has had a truly major impact on my life.
So I’m screaming ‘yes’ to the rooftops, not because it’s over and I can finally revert to my old ways of secretly scoffing Tim Tams and forgetting about Alcohol Free Nights some weeks, but rather ‘yes’ because I took part in the Challenge in the first place.
Here’s what I have learnt over the last 30 Days:
- I can achieve more than I think. Much more. And it’s OK to feel proud of me. Lucky I have very long monkey arms, I can actually physically give myself a pat on the back.
To be open. I’d been very closed to the idea of CrossFit, paleo or any change to my current training and eating habits for years. Years. I refused to let new ideas in, because they scared me. I just thought of all I’d be missing out on rather than what I could gain. This Challenge forced me to open up my mind and embrace positive change. And once I was positive about it, it wasn’t actually very hard to do at all.
- You can never have enough tuppaware. I have a battalion and still….
- Sometimes the things we are scared of are actually the things we end up enjoying the most. About halfway in to the Challenge, I started to think about what I would do when it was over, and I found that, to my utter amazement, I didn’t want to give up my new way of training, I wanted to stick with it. Total 180. Why? Because I love it. It’s intense, and my quads kill like never before, and I sweat my ass off, and it’s way out of my comfort zone. But it’s a fun kind of cuckoo crazy, and it gets results. And, man, the people… I want to carry on getting to know them. I like them. They’re kinda cool. I want to keep hanging with the cool kids.
- A Sunday well spent brings a week of content. You’ve got to put in the yards on a Sunday evening to prep for the meals during the week ahead. Sure, it’s extra work roasting a gazillion sweet potatoes and mixing breakfast fritter batter when you want to hit the couch and mourn the end of the weekend, but it’s so worth it. It’s the only way to stop me reaching for naughty snacks or skipping lunch altogether.
- There is power in community. About 300 people all up completed the 30 Day Challenge. We had a little Facebook group going where pictures were posted, knowledge imparted, information given, questions asked and answered, jokes told, epic fails confessed, triumphs celebrated, results shared and thanks given. We were all in it together and it was awesome – extremely supportive and we all felt part of a community, a tribe on the same mission. All for one…
Fermented should be your favourite ‘F’ word.
- Healthy nutritious food is just as delicious plus more rewarding than packaged treats. If you get the right recipes (and Food to Nourish provided plenty of these), you’re on to a winner.
- You need to really listen to your body and make sure that you only eat when you really are genuinely hungry. Not out of habit, not because you’re thirsty or bored. And maybe, just maybe, you don’t actually ‘need’ that coffee every single day.
- There are, remarkably, better things to do with a bottle of red wine than sink it in one sitting on a Sunday night – remind me to post the Pot Roast Lamb recipe with you. Words can’t describe its slow-cooked yumminess.
- It’s OK not to be the strongest, fastest, whatever… work bloody hard, do your best, push yourself and it just doesn’t matter. I kind of got over my ‘fear of public failure’ issue with this CrossFit stuff. I’m giving it a go, I’m a bit middle aged and not very good, but that’s just great.
- It’s astonishing how much sweet potato, baby spinach and avocado one person can consume in a month. Truly astonishing.
It works! CrossFit training and proper nutritious real food for 30 days and I lost 2% body fat from my abdomen area. Kicking goals, my friend, kicking goals.
So I say ‘yes’ now and fist pump the air a little bit, not just because I’ve discovered new things and lost some body fat but because this 30 Day Challenge actually goes an awful lot further than a month.
This Challenge has changed the way that I, and my family, will eat and train forever. It has made such a positive change to our collective health and wellbeing. And you can’t put a price on something like that.