Well the 28 Day TransFORMation is long past, and for me it's been officially done for a bit longer. I did really well for the first two weeks, and felt great. Kyle and I had plans to go out with one of his best friends and meet his new girlfriend, so I had given myself a pass to enjoy the evening and not worry about the rules. That meant pizza and beer. And then, of course my stomach felt terrible the next day so it spiraled on and on.
I got back on track slightly, but my all or nothing brain couldn't spiral back completely.
The good news is that I was able to learn quite a bit about my body that I haven't been able to pinpoint before.
I learned that sugar is the main cause of my rosacea flare ups. This was HUGE. I've struggled with this for quite a few years now. And I'm thankful that I finally have something to blame it on that I can control. I can now consciously decide if whatever sweet treat I want to eat, is worth some uncomfortable heat in my face and some excessive red face that will linger for days. Sometimes the answer is yes. Sometimes it's no. #progress.
Sadly this also means (and I've suspected this before) that alcohol is also a huge trigger for my face flare ups. Sad face. Major sad face. I've yet to determine if certain beers are worse triggers than others, but I may have to take on a scientific study with myself as the test subject to see. ;) Stay tuned.
I also learned that dairy, while it doesn't effect my stomach nearly as much as it used to digestion-wise, it is a huge cause of bloat for me (yuck) and causes excessive mucus (double yuck). When I started eating dairy after the two weeks, all of my nasal and throat membranes filled back up and I've been "snotty" ever since. I'm trying to cut way back on dairy, but this is so incredibly hard for me. Because it takes a few days for the symptoms to clear up, even having it once a day or once every other day causes me to have the symptoms non-stop. Additional sad face.
Finally, I have found the culprit of my GI issues--gluten. Ugh. I also learned that gluten is essentially in every damn thing. So that's been difficult. I did find that while I was eating burgers without a bun I felt full without being gross and uncomfortable (for the first time ever, probably). My re-introductory meals were not as systematic as they could've been, so I'm still uncertain how severe the intolerance is. So I'll have to keep being mindful of things.
I also found that I enjoy prepping and preparing my food at home. I l.o.v.e. going out to eat. I just love food. And I love the experience of going out to eat. And I love looking over every item on the menu in hopes that I found *the* perfect menu item. But Kyle and I actually had a lot of fun spending time in the kitchen together and will definitely try to spend our date nights making up something great in the kitchen and/or on the grill.
I'm glad I did this challenge, even though technically I failed, I did learn a lot, and that was my goal. Ultimately I lost 8 pounds and several inches in the two weeks I was "on" and have continued to keep off, and even lose a couple of more pounds by being more mindful about what I'm putting in my body, and continuing with the heavy water drinking. Knowing that beer makes my face look terrible has allowed me to pass up social night time beers with Kyle 99% of the time, which certainly doesn't hurt. And I've found many awesome healthy dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free recipes that I can use as go to's for meals and meal prep.
Ideally I'd like to eat in this manner 80-90% of the time, and that is my goal. But I'm still working on the how to execute that. For those of you that eat like this, feel free to send me any and all of your fave recipes.