This is a guest post by Flow Member, Caroline Zelonka, participating in The Reset.

A little over a week and I’m feeling … well .. so-so. My energy levels are all over the place. I’m finding it easier to get going in the morning, but in the afternoons and early evenings I start to drag.

I’m also getting really tired of potatoes.

On a positive note, I’m proud of myself for making it through the first weekend despite plenty of temptation – wine, pizza, chocolate cake – waved in my face. (Literally: my 11-year-old nephew playfully taunted me after I explained my eating plan. He later redeemed himself by engaging me in a competitive game of ping-pong.)

But I gained newfound resolve at Tuesday’s Reset meetup. Beth led us in some stretching exercises, and we shared some tips and tricks. Speaking of, I wanted to share some of the advice I’ve gleaned, from Reset members and elsewhere.

  1. Read labels: You’d be surprised what foods contain sugars, disguised as sucrose, dextrose, maltose, barley malt and more. (The blog Sugar Science claims there are at least 61 different names for sugar on food labels.) But just as often, you can find surprisingly-compliant foods. My favorite Kroger brand mustard, for example, is fine.
  2. Freeze treats: Ambushed by a gift of homemade cookies or birthday cake? Thank the giver profusely, then throw it into the freezer to enjoy once the Reset is over. If you think you’ll be too tempted having it in your house, throw them in your work fridge (if you have one) or ask a friend to keep them for you.
  3. Design your plate: Take some time to plate your dishes nicely, and don’t forget the garnish. “Even a sprig of parsley helps,” said one Reset member. Attractive plating can also help convince your partner or kids to eat, or at least try, your Whole 30 creations.
  4. Chia seeds: A good source of soluble fiber, these little seeds can be mixed with any fluid (I prefer coconut milk) to make a pudding-like substance or thicken a smoothie. Add some ripe banana or pear for sweetness. If you don’t like them, you can always throw them in your Chia Pet.
  5. Infused water: These cold, dry days are dehydrating enough, and if you’re like me, this diet makes you pee more than usual. One solution: try creating waters infused with cucumber, berries, citrus juice, fresh ginger, or tea. (Ginger tea also makes a yummy hot drink.) You can also sip garnished sparkling water and sorta-kinda pretend it’s a cocktail.
  6. Keep your eyes on the prize: It’s only been 10 days, likely not enough time to see much progress. But I’m trying to celebrate every healthy food choice, label read, sugary snack skipped, red wine not ordered. I put the scale away, but I can tell my belly is a little less bloated. And though my energy levels are rather unpredictable, I can feel the “tiger blood” starting to form.

I’m also thinking about rewards. I’m keeping track of the money I’m not spending on snacks, wine, and cocktails, and am putting it into an account which I will use to buy … well, I’m not sure. Any ideas? Let me and others know in the comments, and feel free to share your own Whole 30 tips.