So, the Whole30 is over, what’s next? How do you start the reintroduction process? What are you suppose to eat? Do I still eat Whole30 meals? Let’s discuss a few different things you can do to make the transition a bit easier. My approach to life after Whole30 is to simply expand on all the lessons I’ve learned during my 30 days.
Before you start your reintroduction process, you need to understand that Whole30 was just a starting point. During your Whole30, you had an outline of what you could and could not eat. Now, you are stepping back into your everyday routine. There are no guidelines for achieving your personal goals. I think one thing a lot of us tend to forget is that the Whole30 is not a 30-day fix. The program simply gives you somewhat of a clean slate to work with. During your 30 days, you are most likely introduced to more real foods than you have ever experienced in your lifetime. You are cooking and playing with real ingredients and experiencing food in a whole new way. And that my friends, is the beauty of the Whole30. It is not a gimmick. It is simply the jumpstart you need to change your life. Now, you can start the reintroduction process on your way to food freedom. So to start you off on the right foot, here are some of my tips for staying successful post Whole30.
Continue to Meal-Prep:
This is my number one tip. Please continue to meal-prep or continue to do whatever made you feel successful during your Whole30. It’s so important you don’t just revert to your old ways of doing what you use to. Meal-prepping is one process many of us find helpful and challenging at the same time. For some who were just introduced to meal-prepping during their first Whole30, it can prove to be a little difficult. For others, it can be a source of relief. But, whatever stage you are at, meal-prepping is a wonderful aid to a successful change. You’ve just taken a huge step in the right direction. So, to continue changing your relationship with food and truly gaining Food Freedom, you can’t just stop at 30 days.
Eat Whole30 Meals:
Continue to eat Whole30 meals. After your first round of Whole30, I recommend reintroducing one thing at a time. So maybe try adding legumes (beans) one week and see how it effects your body. Then decide whether that works for you to keep it as part of your lifestyle or not. Now the next week, you move on to another food group (maybe dairy or sugar) and so on.
Don’t EVER feel like you have to eat Whole30 all the time (because honestly, that is not the point of the program) and it’s not recommeded or healthy. It is an aid in helping you figure out what works for your body and what doesn’t. The program simply empowers you to make better choices after every Whole30 cycle you’ve completed.
Do Not Plan an After Whole30 Cheat Day:
One of the biggest tips I’ve learned from Melissa and the Whole30 team is to never plan a “cheat meal”. This is probably one of the easiest ways to ruin all your hard work. You are telling yourself you are going to “cheat”. Instead, it is ok to choose to indulge in the moment. It’s ok to enjoy a moment with something or someone you love. So let’s say you’re at dinner and you’ve had a great Whole30 or Paleo meal and you choose to enjoy a piece of cheesecake. That is perfectly ok! You’ve recognized that you want to enjoy this moment with your friends and family, and you are going to savor this cheesecake. And after that, you are able to move on to your regularly scheduled healthy practices. It doesn’t even have to be just one meal. Whether you are making the conscious decision to enjoy a cookie or enjoying 14 blissful days on vacation, it is ok. Don’t beat yourself up. Enjoy yourself, and then go right back to choosing healthier meals and habits. This is one thing I struggled with a lot before Whole30. I always felt so guilty when I “cheated”. And because I continuously beat myself up about it, I would then continue to “comfort” myself by making more bad choices. But now, I can indulge, feel great and move on. Choosing to move on and continue my journey, not hinder the process by putting myself down.
A Mini Reset:
Now my final tip. If you find yourself slipping into your old habits or consistently choosing unhealthy meals not because you want it but because it’s there, it may be time for a mini reset. Whole30 is always there to come to your rescue. And, you don’t always have to do a full 30-day reset. You can choose to do whatever you need. Whether it’s 3 days or 14, choose enough to get you back to a place of knowing why you chose a healthy path. For me, I choose mini resets when I feel overwhelmed, or if I have been incredibly busy, running all the time and I may not be making good choices. It’s all about how you feel.
To help you in your reintroduction process, here are some delicous recipes (Whole30 and non-compliant recipes) to get you started.
For more inspiration, check out all of our Whole30 recipes →