Whole 30 Week 2 Recap: Budgeting

Hello, hello! How was the rest of your weekend? I prepped yesterday afternoon, got a much needed mani/pedi with the girls club and chatted with my one of my faves. I am also particularly happy writing this post because 14.3 went really well for me! I got 64 reps and PR’d my deadlifts at 155 lbs. I didn’t think I would make it to that round but it’s amazing how the Open is challenging and surprising me. And how it’s also kicking my butt…

Box jump bruise

I hate box jumps. Hah. I switched to step-ups (which was totally allowed in 14.3 yay) after that happened. Definitely need to work on not being timid with my box jumps but they do freak me out!

So it’s been two weeks of Whole 30 deliciousness. If you missed my first recap (and care), you can catch up here. But basically I learned: I’m still a snacker, fruit and cauliflower hate me, my skin is awesome, lots of planning and prep, my groceries are expensive and Tupperware is my bestie. That’s the short version.

So week two… lessons learned and how I felt:

1. The snack monster is mostly tamed.

I am actually getting the hang of this! I added a bit more to each meal (1/2 an avocado, a handful of nuts, an extra egg etc) to ward off the snack monster. Pretty good most of the time but sometimes I still have something extra – last night I was still hungry after dinner so I had a banana and cashew butter.

2. I’ve limited Larabars.

Larabars were my go-to hungry snack but I felt like they were making me crash and giving me toooo much sugar – albeit natural, I still felt the effects. I am feeling much better when I have more meat or nuts or avocado as opposed to a Larabar. Still love ’em though.

3. I sometimes felt tired in the afternoon.

Last week, at around 2:30 to 5pm, I felt veryyyy tired. Maybe it was work but I’m not sure. But I focussed on making sure I was getting 8 hrs of sleep (did my best) and increased my starchy carbs at lunch and felt better by the end of the week.

4. My groceries are still expensive: I am learning that I need to shop a bit smarter (which I did this weekend) but last week wasn’t great in terms of budgeting. It happens. My veggies were seeming to be too expensive (need the farmer’s markets to start) and my properly raised animal products were adding up to more than they needed to be. I have a few ideas (keep reading) but let’s recap week #2 groceries and spending.

Whole 30 Week 2 Groceries

I went to Metro (twice) for produce and The Healthy Butcher (new fave place) for meat/chicken/seafood. I had some eggs, a lonely of salmon, nuts, nut butter, coconut oil already.

Here’s what I bought for week #2:

  • 3 cans of salmon – $8.37
  • 7 sweet potatoes – $6.78
  • 5 organic golden delicious apples – $4.59
  • 2 green peppers – $3.65
  • 1 spaghetti squash – $6.62
  • 1 small jar of almond butter – $4.49
  • 8 bananas – $2.95
  • 6 avocados – $5.45
  • 2 organic broccoli – $5.98
  • 2.6 lbs brussels sprouts – $7.48
  • 12 organic free range eggs – $6.99
  • 5 organic, free range chicken breasts – $22.53
  • 0.5 lb wild, organic salmon – $15.43
  • 1.25 lbs organic ground beef – $11.24

Total =  $115.55

Eek. A little over budget. So here’s what I have learned about my groceries and how I am going to handle them going forward:

5. Fish is a treat. 

In order to buy properly raised fish, it is costing too much to buy on a regular basis. Cans are a good option (and to make my salmon cakes) but I don’t want to go can-crazy either. I can’t believe I am saying this… meat is a much better option. Ah. Vegans don’t hate me. I am not always buying totally grass-fed as it is difficult to find but I am doing what I can and buying local and organic. Mooo. Okay that was terrible.

6. Only buy boneless skinless chicken breasts when on sale. 

Organic, free-range… yadda yadda… boneless, skinless breasts are not cheap. I need to only buy when on sale and possibly think about buying the whole bird on occasion and split it with my dad because I don’t like all chicken meat.

Bye, bye delicious salmon… how I will miss you.

Salmon and mango salad

7. Toughen up and try other nutrient-dense food.

I bought sardines on the weekend – they are so good for you. I haven’t tried them yet but I’ll let you know when I do and likely post a pic on Instagram because if it’s not on Insta, it didn’t happen. I also bought chicken sausages (so far I love them) and grass-fed ground beef, which is surprisingly inexpensive. Other things I want to try: liver and saurekrat.

So… all is good in Amy-Whole-30 land. My skin is still great (working on that post), I still food prep like a mad-woman and carry Tupperwares everywhere. Yup, yup.

Amy holding tupperwares

Stay tuned for some serious food prep fun tomorrow :)

Have a wonderful Monday!

P.S. I updated my “recipe” page over the weekend – I think it is much more user friendly. I’d love to get your feedback! Check it out here. Thanks!


Questions of the day…

How was your weekend? What did you do?

Any grocery shopping tips for me? 


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45 thoughts on “Whole 30 Week 2 Recap: Budgeting

  1. Though I’m not happy that you went over budget, I’m glad to see I’m not the only one. Organic chicken is SO expensive, so I only buy it when on sale, and same with salmon in general. I’ll sometimes buy tilapia or some other kind of fish because salmon is always the most expensive. As far as produce, like you said, I am SO reader for farmer’s markets to begin.

  2. I wish I had tips for you, but I have just as much trouble with expensive groceries!

    You’re brave to try sardines – I’ve been curious about them for years, but I just can’t bring myself to actually try them haha.

  3. I spend so much more on groceries than I used to! I know it’s because I’m paying more attention to my food quality, and supporting my local farmer’s market (luckily mine runs all year round and is great for meat and fish but the veggies cost a bomb!)

    But my excuse is it’s worth it – I can live without a new pair of shoes, but good food is vital!

  4. Oh wow sardines….you brave! It is probably the only food I really can’t eat.
    Good job on the mealprep! I realize thet the longer I do it, the easier it gets. It just comes naturally :-)
    And yay for Deadlift PR! I didn’t dare to participate the Opens – my Double Unders are NOT existent – I will buy a rope this week and go practise in the park with my friend. That, and handstand!!

  5. Do you have an Aldi around you by chance? It’s a grocery store but it’s so much cheaper. A bag of sweet potatoes (I think 8 or 9) costs $2 or less! It’s unreal. The fruits and veggies are awesome quality and cheaper, which is helpful for me on a budget, too! Anyway I think you are doing great realizing what you can and cannot buy. For me, I typically have to buy the frozen skinless chicken breasts when they go on sale and freeze them. Sticking to budgets are huge, but sometimes not realistic and sometimes just don’t happen! :)

  6. I’m working on the grocery budgeting as well, but I think I need to accept that I need to raise my budget a little. I eat more than I did when I first created it like a year and a half ago, and I know that I eat more now than I did then. Apparently…eating more means spending more money on food….:-p Cannot freakin’ wait for farmers market season.
    I like Larabars, but I don’t eat them too often anymore because I find that I’m hungry again an hour later.

  7. Definitely buy things on sale like you’re planning. If you have a big freezer, it’s easy to stock up! When I look at my grocery bill I find that the processed foods cost the most for me. And snack monsters unite… I don’t know where I’d be without my snacks ;)

  8. Seriously why is meat so darn expensive?! It kills me when I go home because it’s even more expensive in PA than it is in Athens. I find that strange and not cool haha. I was just telling my friend I needed the farmer’s market to come back asap. I miss it so much and the indoor one just isn’t the same.

  9. Your skin DOES look amazing in the pic!!! And sauerkraut is so good … do it!!! Have you noticed feeling any different in your workouts with the Whole 30? I have been feeling SO sluggish lately while limiting sugar, but I’m also limiting starchy vegetables and fruit (which I do NOT think is healthy for the long term, btw, it’s a very very temporary thing!). Can’t wait for you to try sardines!

    1. Your comment MADE MY DAY! I cannot even explain how happy I get when people compliment my skin so thank you soooo much!!! Hm interesting question about my workouts! I honestly haven’t really thought about it as I always had lots of energy to workout yet I do feel so much stronger but that’s probably a combination of food and the fact that I am getting stronger (but I do believe the changes in my diet have contributed to that muscle growth).

  10. Loving the Whole30 updates! I’m not doing the challenge myself, but actually am having a similar experience with being tired in the afternoons. I feel like exactly 230-5 is where I hit this slump (after still having a good lunch/healthy snacks) but I was wondering if you found something that has been working for you? Also I love love love chicken sausages, but I’m curious is there a brand you bought/liked? I’ve a tried a couple of blehhh ones and my go-to brand is sometimes hard to find :/ Thanks and good luck on the rest of the challenge!!

    1. I’m so glad you are finding them helpful. The afternoon slump started to get better by the end of the week (which seems kind of unusual) but I tried to focus on increasing some healthy long lasting carbohydrates. I started adding more sweet potato to my lunch, which I think contributed to more energy, and I focussed on getting a “good” night’s sleep. For me that meant reading before bed and not looking at my phone. As for the chicken sausages, I buy them from the local grocer I mentioned above called The Healthy Butcher. I really like them as they are of course local and organic. But when I was living in Boston I would sometimes buy the Applegate Farms chicken sausages – I liked them a lot and from what I remember I think they contain pretty good ingredients. Is there a Trader Joe’s near you? They might have good ones too! Hope this helps :)

      1. Yesssss thank you soooo much!! I live near Boston too :) I do like Trader Joe’s sausage (not a fan of Brat Hans I figured out) but I haven’t tried Applegate yet so I’ll have to check those out..Also I’m going to try both of those suggestions, I’m guilty of computer/TV/phone before bed, and I’m still experimenting with some dietary changes. Working on adding more and more fats (hellllooo is my perfect skin coming?!) has been kind of taking the place of some of my starches. Finding the right balance is QUITE difficult!!

  11. The recipe page looks AMAZING!!! I love what you’ve done with it!

    I, too, am trying to reduce my grocery bill as I look forward to having my salary basically cut in half in a few months. I’m giving myself a goal of $50/week, which is HARD, but I’m trying to figure it out. I’ve been shopping at a store with rewards points and trying to pick options that are on sale. As far as produce, I have been buying exclusively in season. Do I want that juicy carton of strawberries? Yep, but I’m not going to pay $5 for it. That has helped me. Haven’t gotten to $50 yet, but I think having that goal helps me to keep the cost down, even if I don’t get it down that low!

    1. Thank you so much for checking out the recipe page :) I love your mindset of making the goal lower. I think I need to adopt that mentality… I spent $80 for this week so I’m happy about that but I think I can do better!

  12. I can’t believe you moo-ed!! You’re lucky I love you ;) I wish I had tips for you, but I don’t. We are budgeting right now by giving up expensive healthy foods (quinoa, spinach, kale, avocados, greek yogurt), and sticking to cheaper bases (rice, romaine), frozen veggies wherever possible, and just bananas for fruit. It’s not fun, but necessary for now.

      1. i usually just top a salad with them…or just eat them out of the can. Get the wild planet sardines because other ones I’ve had were not as good. They taste a little like tuna fish but (believe it or not) less fishy. Sometimes I mash them up in a bowl with avocado and hot sauce. Ommgggg!

  13. I’ve been spending a little bit more on groceries than before too but mostly because I’m buying more meat than before. It’s crazy that I am finding the opposite with meat- for me, fish is 10x cheaper than poultry or beef! (I’m telling ya, Aldi’s is the secret!). I tried my first can of sardines the first week on it and it actually wasn’t too bad. I mixed it with lots of sauerkraut to cover up the super fishy smell and walaaaa! Try it!

    1. No Aldi’s that I have found in Canada booo :( okay definitely trying sardines with sauerkraut or hot sauce! Thanks girly… so glad everything is going well in the food department for you too.

  14. I think one of the things I do that helps me (and I still struggle) is go to store with a few backup plans. If there is a recipe I want to make but the ingredients aren’t on sale- bring a spare recipe and see if those items are. This has helped me a few times. I also like to stock up. Say something is on sale and can buy a bunch of it.. get it, prep it and freeze it. I do this a lot when things like squash and peppers go on sale. I’ll buy a bunch and then cut them up and freeze some of them for a later date.

    1. Laura that is seriously the best advice! Being the planner I am, I definitely go to the grocery store with the mindset of what should be on the menu BUT I actually did exactly as you suggested yesterday (was I reading your mind?!) and changed things up a bit.

  15. WOO! Wish the healthy groceries could be just a tad cheaper on this end as well. But as my mom has said, paying more now for the healthy foods will pay off with your health down the road – definitely something that has stuck with me. You are doing so so awesome, and are becoming my eating inspiration; you seem to be getting it down great with including all the nutrients…this is definitely something I want to improve on. And your 14.3 score?!? AMAZING! Proud of you!

    1. Why are Mom’s always right? Love ’em :) Eek thank you so much! How did 14.3 go for you?! MY BACK IS KILLING! (We did Fran this morning… deathly). Hope you are having a wonderful Monday xx

      1. Because they have to make sure we survive in this crazy world! Haha. I got 86 – 155# is my new PR for DL now! Fran on a Monday?! Ouch! I am glad my back is feeling better!

  16. Looks like you are still learning a lot in the Whole 30 process! I know you said you were tired in the afternoon a lot, but have you noticed any change in energy at other times of the day or on the weekend when you aren’t at work? Just curious! I’m always interested in how a change in diet can affect energy levels overall.

    1. Overall, my energy levels have been great. Given than I am up at 5am most days and not home until 7, I definitely notice a difference. I also find that I get up without my alarm when I am ready to get up. My body just seems to know what it has had “enough” sleep.

  17. So great you are feeling energetic! I have started working out more regularly again (it seems to go in waves with me, I hope this time it really sticks) and I am feeling more energetic too. I’m also limiting my fruit which I think is helping. Crazy how even though it’s healthy sugar, it can make you feel awful!

    Congrats on your PR! You are pretty much super awesome :) Good luck trying those sardines! I have never had them so can’t say either way what I think. Good luck with budgeting, look forward to next week’s update!

    1. I hope it sticks too but I’m a bit biased :) I am so glad you are finding food combinations that are making you feel more energetic too – as amazing as fruit is!

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