I must really blame Jenny!
The other day I accidentally changed the name of the blog page to "I blame Jenny". I only discovered this by looking at the analytics of this website on my phone and I noticed that my most dedicated website follower kept looking at "I blame Jenny". I was far from a computer and unable to change it, and really had a great laugh. If you know Jenny, you will share this laugh.
Jenny is my college roommate from Freshman year and one of my favorite people on the planet.
In November, Jenny, and two of my other most favorite people on the planet, Sarah and Aimée (also very best friends from college) all came to visit me on this little island in Florida. A long overdue girls' weekend was had following a most wonderful 30th reunion at St. Lawrence University last spring. All three of these amazing women were instrumental in my life as a young woman. Thirty years ago- with them- I managed to get into all sorts of trouble, we laughed and laughed years worth of laughs, and we talked about everything under the sun as we grew from girls into young women. Aimee and I also traveled the world together after graduation and visited almost all of the European countries on a fabulous walkabout. These women are part of the core of who I am.
Fast forward...November. How truly amazing to spend 4 days alone with these divine friends. No topics are taboo, no explaining who we are, with a deep understanding of each others parents, and a great desire to know all about each other's children and spouses we reconnected right where we left off. Our days were spent relaxing on the beach and riding golf carts into town- where Sarah did her usual amazing job as fashion stylist for each of us. Evenings were spent at my favorite restaurants eating the island's finest fare and enjoying copious amounts of tropical cocktails. ("copious" one of Sarah's wonderful words that reminds me of her every time I use it.)
But Jenny kind of ruined all the fun.... she started talking about weight and health. Damn it!
Jenny had tried the Whole30 with another college friend and was looking into doing it again. She fricking inspired us to give up dairy, alcohol, sugar, and carbs. Like some crazy preacher, we listened to her!! We had a farewell meal fit for queens on a gorgeous deck overlooking sunset on the gulf of Mexico. Farewell to each other, and farewell to all those food items we hold dear.
There was a bet involved. We naturally divided into teams. Sarah, my partner in another adventure! This was the kind of bet only college friends make. Disgusting financial consequences with pay offs to organizations you would never want to give money to. Plus there was the added bonus of the threat of dirty T-shirts designed by the other team to be worn on the streets of our hometowns. I can laugh now, but the threat was REAL!
And thus I started the Whole30.
The short version is that the first two weeks I was crabby as all hell as I detoxed not only from the items above but from diet coke. I thought I would miss wine, but in fact, I really missed my true love...gummy bears. I also missed Vermont maple syrup, which is hilarious, but I don't think I actually eat it that often.
Once I got past the first two weeks I felt fantastic. REALLY, REALLY, FANTASTIC. I could breathe, I had amazing energy, and slept like a baby. I did the Whole30 for 37 days because I felt so good. I lost 10.5 pounds easily, no calorie counting, no portion control, just eating a fabulous paleo diet.
Tomorrow I start again for another 30 days. This time there is a glorious light at the end of the tunnel. I was invited by a friend to join her at a yoga retreat this summer in Italy. Normally, I would have said no. The thought of getting in shape for this event would have seemed like too much! But this me says "YES" because I know with the whole30, I can do it. I just need to get myself back into the grove. Tonight we have really, really fun dinner plans with new friends. Tomorrow is a new day.
As for the outcome of other challenge. Let's just say that in the end we are all winners because this challenge created a constant text conversation between the four of us. In honor of friendship we each donated to a cause we hold dear and we share the information on each cause with each other. The real win is the reconnection of a lifelong friendship with women I hold dear.