Tag: wellness

So, What Can You Eat During Whole 30?

So, as I mentioned in my previous blog post, I am a BIG fan of The Whole30 Program. My last round left me feeling GREAT and I’m currently gearing up for my second. Like any dietary plan, there are a lot of rules and restrictions, which ultimately aim to make you the best you possible. Today I’m going to share with you a little bit more about those rules (and their loopholes!).


  • Although dairy is strictly prohibited from the program because of the milk proteins found therein, clarified butter (or ghee) is totally OK! Not only is this a great way to add some fats to your diet, it’s also a crucial piece in a lot of curry dishes. Here’s one recipe that I recently made and instantly fell in love with.


  • So, by and large, sugars, artificial sweeteners, and pretty much any other type of sucrose-like substance that you can think of is off the table. Fortunately, fruit juice is used as a sweetener in products or recipes is totally fine. Guess who’s going to be making a lot of hand-squeezed orange juice?


  • Some legumes are permitted: green beans, sugar snap peas, and snow peas. Basically, these legumes contain a lot more green than they do bean. Not only is this great news for salad lovers, it also permits some great stir-fry combinations. Just make sure that you make it at home and skip out on any preservatives you might find in restaurants.


  • As far as vinegar goes, feel free to use it to your heart’s content! Well, with the exception of vinegars with added sugar and malt vinegar which often contains gluten. White, balsamic, red wine, apple cider, and rice vinegars are all fair game. I can’t recommend this apple cider dressing recipe enough.


  • You might not know this, but iodized table salt actually contains sugar! Who would have thought? It turns out that sugar (in the form of dextrose) is used to keep the salt from iodizing and basically disappearing into thin air. We often think of foods as sweet or salty, but it turns out that even when they’re salty, they’re kind of sweet. Fortunately, salt (and the sugar that sneakily hides in it) are fair game for the program.


Now you might look at The Whole30 Program and think something like “this is crazy,” “Rachel, you are crazy for doing this crazy program,” “it’s too strict/tough/limiting/demanding, etc.”

Having done one round myself, I can assure that it’s not that bad at all.

In fact, it’s pretty easy!

And more than that, it’s only for 30 days. Think about it: 30 days. Not a year, or a decade or an eternity, but 30 days. For me, it was really helpful to stop looking at it as 30 days of limitations but as 30 days of opportunity. I think that’s one of the most appealing things about the program. You get to try something, experience a new way of eating and then see where the cards lie at the end of the month. And for me, I felt pretty freaking good.

Alright. I’m starting to feel like I’m getting way too enthusiastic about this.

Whether you think this is crazy or a fun idea, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Check out my Twitter at https://twitter.com/rachelbouman for more Whole30 thoughts.

Fit and Frugal: Free Classes & Health Hacks Everyone Should Know

yoga-774243_1280These days, there’s always some new hip way to stay fit. One month it’s SoulCycle, another month it’s bikram yoga, and another it’s The Bar Method. These classes can be wildly expensive though, and the average person may feel left out of all these new exercise trends. Thankfully, there are free, wacky fitness classes popping up in major cities all over the United States. If you’re not located in these cities, don’t fret; there are great, cheap alternatives to the standard exercise routines as well.

Fun & Free In DC

1. North Face Mountain Training (DC)Offered by the athletic-wear company North Face, this free training program takes place in the District of Columbia. The classes aims to prep you for your own climbing, skiing, or running trips. Each class is taught by trainers from the North Face company.

2. Nike Training ClubGet clad in your finest Nike workout clothes and join the party. This class feels more like going to the club than going to the gym, so if that appeals to you, this is the free class for you.

3. Yogalates and Pilates in the Park – Stretch and get that good aching feeling in your muscles twice a week at The Golden Triangle’s classes in Farragut Square. Held on Tuesdays and Thursdays right after work (5:30pm), they’re the perfect way to get a little workout in before heading home.


Health Hacks (Alternatives to the Exercise “Norms”)

1. Take Quarterly Private Yoga Classes Instead of Regular Classes – Instead of paying the average $19 a class, invest in quarterly private sessions that run for about $120 a session. These private sessions give you personalized instruction and a take home kit tailored specifically to you.

2. Use Online Personal Training Instead of In-Person Trainers – Online companies offer exercise and nutrition packages that can be designed expressly for you. They are available for any fitness level and gives you access to an entire online community.

3. Buy Resistance Bands Instead of Free Weights – The bands are a great, portable alternative to free weights. They usually retail for an average of $40 for three different resistances vs the hundreds of dollars that a set of free weights usually cost.


For a list of more free classes in DC and other fitness-on-a-budget tips, click here and here.