21

I’ve done a lot of different workout & eating programs over the years and when someone asks me, “Which one works?” the honest answer is whichever one you stick to!

I am so in love with this 21 Day Fix program that I feel I have to shout it from the rooftops! So here are 21 reasons why I love it so much:

1- The eating plan is so easy. In the past I’ve spent hours calculating calories of fats, carbs, and proteins, and adding up daily amounts. With this program you do two simple math problems to figure out your calorie range and then look at the chart to see how much of each type of food you can eat in a day.

2- Measuring portions is easy because you simply fill the little plastic containers that are color-coded for each food type.

3- I can follow the food plan and still eat a Paleo-ish diet. Or if someone was a vegetarian, they can still easily follow the food plan.

4- The program also has you drink a protein shake called Shakeology as one of your meals or snacks. I’ve been drinking chocolate and it is a great replacement for a sugary treat that you don’t have to feel guilty about.

5- You don’t have to give up all sweats and alcohol. You can save up container portions to have a treat or drink every once in awhile.

6- You are not food deprived on this eating plan. There are days where I can’t even get in everything I am supposed to eat.

7- There is an app where you can track your daily intake of food, water, and also your workouts.

8- The workouts are varied every day so you don’t get tired of doing the same ones over and over again.

9- The workouts are all only 30 minutes long. I often dread long workouts, but with these, the time flies by!

10- The workouts are easily to modify. During this past 21 days I’ve fought plantar fasciitis and I also tweaked my old knee injury and I was still able to do something every day.

11- I can do the workouts in the comfort of my own home. I don’t have to spend time driving to a gym or working around a gym class time that doesn’t fit my schedule.

12- Working out at home also means I can wear whatever I want and not worry about what anyone else thinks.

13- The trainer who leads the workouts, Autumn Calabrese, isn’t annoying and doesn’t crack lame jokes. Nothing is worse than a video workout where you have to hear the same dumb stuff said over and over again every time you do the workout.

14- The cost is reasonable. It’s the same price as a yearly membership at a gym like Planet Fitness and the same price as I was paying for one month of Crossfit.

15- The Beachbody on Demand means I can stream it anywhere on any device so I can even do a workout in a hotel room when we are on a trip.

16- The Beachbody on Demand also can give you access to all the other Beachbody workout programs so you can switch it up after the first 21 days.

17- Doing the 21 days in a challenge group means support from a coach as well as camaraderie and encouragement from other challengers who are going through the same program at the same time.

18- The challenge group also helps keep you accountable. You have to login every day and post that you did a workout and drank your shakeology.

19- There is a plethora of resources out there on Youtube, Social Media, and the Beachbody website that can support you.

20- I saw results quickly. I’ve slowly gained 10 pounds over the last 3 years, and in 21 days, I lost 5 of the 10 I have to lose. That’s HALF!

21- That fact that it’s only 21 days that you are committing to seems doable and doesn’t seem daunting.

I’m going to do the 21 day fix program soon and will be starting my challenge group. If you are interested in joining, please let me know!

21 Day Fix

Day One of the 21 Day Fix is in the books! Feeling super motivated to crush these 21 days!

The workout was harder than I expected with some movements that I’ve never really done before with weights, so that was great to be working muscles in different and new ways. I burned 304 calories during the 30 minutes, which is just under the 340 I burned yesterday in 30 minutes doing a 2 mile run with a walking cool down. During the workout the time didn’t feel like it was dragging so that is always a plus when working out.

My food felt a little off because I’m still waiting for the color coordinated portion containers to arrive in the mail, so I had to do some guessing on portion sizes. I felt like I hardly ate anything, but still was really full all day. My eating is also a little off because I’m on Spring Break this week and getting up later than usual which means I ate my first meal later than I would on a work day.

I’m excited to have a program with structure to follow. I’ve done well in the past with structured programs, so I hope to be able to eventually turn this into a way of life.

Next Chapter

File_000

I originally started this blog as a way to motivate myself. As you can see from the lack of posts, that didn’t work out so well. I’ve still not given up on my quest to live a happy, healthy and active lifestyle, and therefore I’ve been looking for a new direction.

Over the course of my adult life I’ve been a runner, training for 5Ks and 10Ks, and a triathlete, training for Sprint and Olympic distance races. I’ve gone to a mega-gym and had a personal trainer where I would do days of strength training and days of cardio. I’ve purchased various workout DVDs and the eating plans that come with those. As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I own countless books on fitness and healthy eating. And I even joined a Crossfit gym for about a year and a half. All of these things have been great and following them have helped me to not be overweight and sick.

So now, six months after starting this blog and floundering with my fitness and eating habits, I’m making a change. Tomorrow, April 25, 2017, I’m starting the 21 Day Fix program from Beachbody. I’m going to follow both the workout and eating plans and document my journey on social media as well as this blog. I’m also going to start being a Beachbody Coach so I will also be posting things to help inspire others on their own journeys.

Below are links to my Beachbody pages:

Weekend Blues

images

What is it about the weekend? All those hours free from work and those are always the hardest days for me to get a workout in. Since I have to be to work so early on weekdays (7:30am), I savor those weekend mornings where I can sit around in my pajamas and sip coffee until 9am. Then I eat breakfast and I have to wait for some digestion to take place before I can workout, but then I get busy with some chore or other activity and forget about working out. By the time I remember, it’s time to eat lunch, so again I have to wait awhile after eating. And so the pattern continues for the rest of the day!

Another factor that affects my weekend workouts is that lately, I always feel so exhausted from the week at work. I’m not sure if it’s my age and the menopause or the high stress of my job, but I don’t remember always being this exhausted on weekends. I’ve always been a high energy, get stuff done type of person. I’ve never been one to sit around lazily watching TV or something when I could be productive. Now, every weekend, I just want to sit and read, or play some dumb candy crush video game, or even watch TV. There are some days where I don’t even have the energy to leave the house! I’ve done some reading on menopause and energy levels, and there just isn’t any conclusive evidence that menopause causes a decrease in energy levels. I know I always have more energy after I workout, but on weekends it’s like pulling teeth to get myself to do something active.

So what am I going to do in order to break this cycle? First, I’m going to make plans or dates with someone else to workout with. Whether it’s a game of tennis, a Zumba class with my daughter or even a walk with my husband, I need someone else to help hold me accountable. Second, I’m going to schedule my weekly rest day for one of the weekend days. I usually plan the rest day to be a work evening where I am busy with some other event, but I think I need to give myself the reprieve of a lazy day on the weekend in order to recover from the work week and prepare for the upcoming week of work. I need to learn to be just as flexible and easy going with myself as I am with others.

Exercise Every Day

kcs_19befe22

I read a book, 5 years ago called Younger Next Year for Women by Chris Crowley and Henry S. Lodge, M.D. While I thought it was good, the focus audience is women 50 plus. Since I was still in my 30s then, it didn’t really resonate with me. When I came across it again recently, I decided to reread it. This time the book changed my life. The premise is that there are things you can do to improve the quality and longevity of your life. The authors are a doctor and patient with the doctor giving the science behind the ideas and the patient telling of his own experiences. They relate aging and physical decay to the tide of the ocean. It’s continuously coming in and each time it takes over a bit more of the shore. So while aging and decay is inevitable, their argument is that by following their program, you can keep the tide from coming in too quickly. The program consists of 7 rules that need to be implemented. Rule #1 is “Exercise six days a week for the rest of your life.”

While I’ve been a serial exerciser my whole life, I’ve never attacked it as something I have to do, every day, for the rest of my life. Thinking about it that way has been a big change in thinking for me. The book says to consider it a job, so that’s how I’ve been attacking it. Now when I don’t feel like working out, I tell myself I have to go to my second job and that often helps me get moving. One of the authors, Chris, gives lots of great suggestions. He encourages readers to join a gym and try group fitness classes or activities. He also suggests that readers find an athletic passion to make the working out more fun. I’ve taken those suggestions to heart. I’ve been playing tennis lately, a sport I’ve loved my whole life. I’ve also tried Zumba, which is totally out of my comfort zone, and I’m enjoying  it immensely!

ynywpaper-344x485I’ll probably talk a lot more about this great book, but I encourage everyone to read it. There’s even a version more geared towards men called, Younger Next Year, as well several other books. They also have a website: http://youngernextyear.com