On 5/27 Express clubs will be staffed until 12pm & can be accessed anytime using keycards. All other clubs will operate regular hours.

Merritt Clubs Blog

Blog Home Group Fitness Wellness Nutrition Training Workout Tips
home [#000000] Created with Sketch. home
Merritt Clubs Blog
Challenge Accepted: Is That Even Food?

Challenge Accepted: Is That Even Food?

photo 1.jpgI really went for it this month and did the Whole30 diet. Yes, this diet is very expensive. I spent about 3 times more on food this month than normal, and I usually eat fairly healthy. On the plus side though, I didn’t really eat out either.

This diet is not about losing weight, although that is usually a nice benefit. It’s about learning about what you put into your body, how that affects you and stopping unhealthy habits. For example, you aren’t allowed any desserts, even with Whole30 approved ingredients because the ideas is to get away from the mindset of needing a dessert.


  • Follow the Whole30 diet as closely as possible
  • Detox my body to cut cravings
  • Take note of any foods that my body has an aversion to


I have 4 more days to go still, but it’s been good and bad. I was surprised how easy it is to eat super healthy – I wasn’t worried about being tempted to cheat (except for that time I went to out lunch with my family and I had to eat a burger with grilled cheese buns because I was just supporting my mom on her birthday…) But really, it’s not hard to limit yourself and trust that you can do it. What’s terrible about it is how very sad I was.

I knew I could do it, but I was genuinely never happy about it. It didn’t seem worth the food I gave up just to be healthier. I couldn’t go more than a few hours without thinking about how much I needed chocolate. (Kind of the point to break that habit I know, but just because you don’t eat it doesn’t mean you will eventually stop thinking about it.)

Also, I really hate vegetables so I didn’t eat a lot of those. Instead I had a lot of fruit and potatoes. As a result of that, I ate WAY more sugar than I usually do, even if it was natural sugar. And I ate a ton of bacon in my meal prepped breakfasts. I’m also very worried that as soon as this is over, I will binge on all the foods I have missed and end up worse than when I started!

Let’s be fair, it has done a lot of good for me too. It has made me appreciate simple food pleasures like cocoa powder, sweet potato chips with guacamole, and naked juice. It also made me realize how much processed food we eat and how natural food has less artificial fillers.

My fiancé did a separate diet at the same time called Huel. It basically entails switching out one meal a day for a shake that you can flavor with anything you want – berries, fruits, chocolate, etc. But of course he was allowed to go out and get Taco Bell whenever he wanted too…

I do love the idea behind this diet and I wish I could have cut all my cravings, but I still constantly think about the necessity of chocolate. I think if I wanted to try this diet again, I would try a more relaxed version of it, and allow myself to have grains, peanuts, and occasional days off. If you lived off this diet forever, you would be broke and probably never leave your house because the smell of restaurant food is intoxicating, so be prepared if you decide to try this!


Starting: 132lbs, 31inch waist

Ending:  129lbs, 30 inch waist


  • Go to Aldi to get cheaper food (they have great packaged products too like fruit strips, naked juice, nuts, avocados)
  • Keep Whole30 approved Larabars, raisins, naked juice and unsweetened applesauce packs handy, especially if you travel
  • Meal prep everything!
  • Get an accountability buddy
  • Decide how closely you will follow the diet rules and write out a list of everything you can’t eat, or good food brands to try


FAVORITE RECIPE THIS MONTH: Whole30 Chicken Broccoli Cauliflower Casserole

photo 2.jpg



  • 3 cups cauliflower rice (or boil a head of cauliflower and mash)
  • 3 cups broccoli florets (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast cubes
  • ¼ cups green chiles caned


  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup chicken bone broth
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 TBL Italian herb seasoning
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ¼ cup tapioca flour


Cook and mash cauliflower if needed. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 9”x9” casserole pan with olive oil. Layer in cauliflower, broccoli, chicken and green chiles.

In medium sauce pan, whisk together all sauce ingredients except egg and tapioca flour. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. In a cup, whisk the egg and pour into the sauce while stirring. The sauce will begin to thicken, continue stirring.

Next whisk in the tapioca flour and continue to simmer and whisk for about 1 minute until sauce thickens and all clumps are beaten out. Then pour the sauce over the casserole and bake for 45 minutes until edges are browned.