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!

Food

I saw a quote somewhere once that said something about being fit is 20% working out and 80% what you eat. I agree with that idea because when I was a member of a Crossfit gym I witnessed people who came and worked hard every day for years, but still looked the same as they did when they first started. This is all due to diet. I’m not talking about those unhealthy fad diets, but your daily diet or what I will call it from here on out: your eating plan. What do you eat every day?

I’ve followed many different programs in my life when it comes to eating plans from vegetarian to Paleo to eating clean to following a created plan from a book. The one thing I’ve discovered is the same in all these plans is don’t eat junk food and eat lots of fruits and vegetables. The same is true for the Beachbody eating plans.

The other thing that is the same is that you need to plan ahead in order to be successful. First, get that junk food out of your house! If you don’t buy you can’t eat it! I used to buy Oreos for a treat for my kids because I dislike Oreos and knew I wouldn’t be tempted to eat them. Another critical component of the plan is to have a plan: what are you going to eat for each meal each day of the upcoming week. I tend to eat the same thing every day for a week when it comes to lunches and snacks and have variety in my breakfasts and dinners.

If you are just trying to be healthier, cutting out junk and limiting sugar should be enough, but if you are trying to lose weight then you need to consider portion sizes and cutting out calories. I’ve spent many years of my life diligently counting calories, sometimes even breaking down each food item into calories by carbs, fats, and proteins. Beachbody makes portion control super easy. Those little, plastic, color-coded containers (see photo above) take away all the time consuming math. You still have to do a little bit of math in the beginning to figure out your calorie range and how many of each container you are eating each day, but that is nothing compared to what I used to do.

With all that said, the hardest part of eating healthy is you have to cook. Junk and processed foods are easy to grab and eat, but healthy food that is good for you takes prep and cooking. I wish I had a personal chef, that would make eating right super easy, but like most people I don’t. So it has to become a priority. We won’t be perfect at it all the time, but it needs to be a constant effort to stay on track.

For more tips on food visit this Beachbody blog:  https://www.beachbodyondemand.com/blog/10-tips-to-make-meal-prep-easier

Or my Beachbody website: http://www.beachbodycoach.com/sportymom33

Next Chapter

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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:

Love Your Gut

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I feel like I’ve striven to eat well for the past 15 years. Always trying new food plans or diets based on the latest information out there. I went through a Low Fat phase; a reduced calorie phase; a vegetarian phase; a clean eating phase; and most recently a Paleo phase. The biggest issue I have with all these different schools of thought on nutrition is how do you know which one is really best? They all cite evidence for their way of eating, but it is all so conflicting. Regardless of all the different phases, I’ve managed to strictly limit the junk food. Rarely eating sweets or fast food and completely removing soda from my life.

With all these years of pretty healthy eating, I was strangely surprised to suddenly start having digestive issues. About a year ago, I would get these strange ripping pains in my stomach occasionally, often after eating. I didn’t really pay much attention to these pains, but when I started having female issues, I mentioned it to my gynecologist. She did an ultra sound of all my female organs and found no issues. She suggested I see my general practitioner because it could be digestive. I never did this and suddenly last Wednesday afternoon I started feeling nauseated at work. The next day at work I had sharp pains in my abdomen off and on all day and kept feeling like I was about to throw up. In the afternoon I stated having heartburn. I took Tums, but they did not help. This indigestion continued all evening and got so severe that it was debilitating. Again I took Tums and did not get any relief. By this point I had reached the 24 hour maximum consumption of Tums. The next morning, the heartburn pain was less frequent but my stomach pain was unbearable. I finally couldn’t take it anymore so I went to the Urgent Care. There I was diagnosed with acid reflux and esophagitis, which is the inflammation of the esophagus. They gave me some pills for the acid reflux and told me to stay away from caffeine and alcohol due to their high levels of acid.

This is a huge blow because I love my coffee in the mornings and I regularly enjoy a nice glass of wine. In all my years of attempting to eat right, it has always been a choice. I’ve never had food or drink limitations put on me for medical reasons. I’ve now gone 2 days without coffee or wine and I’m surviving. It’s going to take some serious willpower to not have coffee. I’ve also been researching other foods and drinks that are highly acidic to limit as well as what food are good for my gut. I also just learned today about probiotics, but that is a topic for a whole other day! For now I’m just going to do my best to love my gut and make better, more aware choices of how what I consume affects my gut.