Thanks to the Whole30 program, I feel like I have a pretty good handle on what I need to do nutritionally to for optimum health. I still have some tweaks to make and few experiments to run, but for the most part I know now what DOESN'T make me healthy.
During my first Whole30 I spent a portion of those 30 days concentrating on improving my sleep by putting my phone and the television off limits at 8:00pm every night and being in bed no later than 9:00pm (I get up at 5am). However, I didn't stick with those habits very long (maybe a week?). I know I got better sleep while I was doing that, so it's just a matter of getting back into that swing.
But... there are 7 other factors that make up the Whole9 approach to optimal health:
- stress management
- active recovery
- injury rehab
- fun & play
- personal growth
NUTRITION - Continue eating grain-free, dairy-free, legume-free and (mostly) sugar-free. I will have occasional paleo treats when I am attending Holiday dinners that require me to bring a dish. I also will be alcohol free for the next 30 days, but may indulge occasionally after that. I plan to do another Whole30 on January 1st.
SLEEP - I will go back to my "no electronics after 8:00pm" rule and be in bed by 9:00pm (or 8 hours before the alarm will be ringing). 7 days a week. Until it is ingrained habit. At the very least, for the next 30 days. After that, there may be an occasion which doesn't allow for a full 8 hours in bed, but for the next 30 days, I'm there!
STRESS MANAGEMENT - Three main causes of stress for me tend to be; procrastination, not asking for help when I need it and taking on too many tasks that are not priority. I will work on being prepared and not procrastinating as well as asking for help when I need it and getting my priorities straight (ie. having dinner prepared and the laundry done over decorating for the holidays).
ACTIVE RECOVERY & INJURY REHAB - I think my exercise routine already has some active recovery built into it (I typically alternate a CrossFit type workout day with an easy running day and sometimes throw in a pilates/yoga day depending on how I feel).
FUN & PLAY - This is really a tough one for me. I tend to take myself too seriously and often feel "too busy" for having fun. I will really have to make an effort to take time for fun & play every day!
PERSONAL GROWTH - I'm not sure what this means in the Whole9 world, but I take it to mean continuing to become a better me. My plan for this involves continuing to try new foods and learn about improving my health through nutrition and exercise, but also to continue to become a better wife, friend, employee...etc. to others so that I may have more positive influence on those around me.
TEMPERANCE - I actually had to look this one up. I can only assume that Dallas & Melissa are referring to the virtue of temperance, which according to wikipedia is control over excess. So, where do I lose control over excess? My iphone, sweetened paleo treats and coffee. There's probably more, but that's all I can think of right now. So... when I make a batch of paleo pumpkin muffins for an upcoming gathering, I will limit myself to one a day. I will eliminate the use of my iphone while in any social situation and while driving (gasp!) and between the hours of 8pm and 5am. Also, I will only drink 1-2 cups of coffee in the morning.
EXERCISE - My exercise schedule includes 6 days of planned exercise, which is nearly always achieved. I really don't feel like I have much to work on here other than sticking with it. I do intend to join my local CrossFit gym once some other life goals have been met and I look forward to it!
I think the most important thing to keep in mind here is balance. If exercising a 6th day this week means only getting 6 hours of sleep, I need to consider what I am in more need of, the sleep or the exercise. This methodology can be applied to all 9 factors.