I checked in on Ana toward the end of her 30 day program, and this is what she told me: “I did complete the 30 days, but I was not a stellar example of your program as I didn’t follow the shopping lists or the recipes regularly.”
She then went on to tell me which meals she swapped out, what decisions she made about lunch and snacks, and which of the recipes she loved the most. In case you’re curious: the kale with raisins, the squash, broccoli crunch salad, chicken tenders with coconut (kids loved them), and the bbq meat in the slow cooker. “For the most part I stuck to the guidelines, after the first two weeks, I tried to get creative with the alcohol that was allowed, but I realized I don’t love any hard liquor. So I did opt for a glass of wine on the weekends- I stuck to red.”
She also said that she lost 4.5 pounds and she “found that [she] was not as bloated, hungry or tired after the 30 days.” But she closed her email with an apology for (once again) not following the program more closely.
I don’t know about you, but this sounds like a successful 30 days to me!!
Ana undermined the great work that she did, because she didn’t stick to the plan 100%. In reality, I believe that she went above and beyond the program, because she took its guidelines and modified it to fit her tastes and needs. That is exactly what we want! In order for the program to be sustainable in the long term, you need to walk away from it having learned how to navigate the diet all on your own.
Yes, we do ask you to be pretty strict for those first 30 days, and yes, we do ask you to stick the program as much as possible. This is because the program is designed for people who don’t even know where to get started. We do not want you to fall off the wagon and eat something not approved. Sticking with the program as much as possible, will ensure that this doesn’t happen. If however, you are using the program as a template to fit your own tastes and dietary needs AND you’re sticking to the guidelines, you will graduate magnum cum laude! 🙂
But what if you do accidentally (or maybe on purpose) eat something that is not on the 30 day program? Do not admonish yourself for messing up! Nobody can be perfect 100% of the time. A recurring theme at Paleo FX was to “not let the perfect get in the way of the good.” And if you are making progress, then that is good! Many people will sabotage themselves because they didn’t reach perfection, by giving up all together. Don’t do this!! Rome wasn’t built in day. Neither will your new gut microbiome be restored in just one month. 🙂 Do the best you can. Aim for perfection, but pat yourself on the back for making any progress at all. Then get up the next day, and do it all over again.
Finally, don’t be afraid to talk about your program modifications in the forum. You may inspire others to take the 30-day program to the next level.
Oh what’s that? You haven’t started the program, yet? Well what are you waiting for? Set a date and commit! 🙂