Tales of My Fitness Past – Part 5

When last we left the discussion of my fitness and body history, we were at a nice positive chapter. I was fit and happy. I reveled in my friends, my career and my life. I didn’t care so much about what I was missing. I was enough for myself. I was traveling to see friends who had moved away. I even joined the Maine Outdoor Adventure Club. I’m not much of an outdoor person, or adventuring in the outdoors. I joined it to meet new people and get some new experiences. It was kind of crazy, but I thought, oh well!

Bash

 

As it happens often in life, just when you get cozy and comfortable, you get the chance to change things.  I met a guy. And being in a new relationship caused my routine and my normal to drastically change.  I wasn’t cooking or myself anymore, I was cooking for 2.  But it was more like cooking for 3 or 4 because my boyfriend had an appetite.  I was going out to dinner much more. My boyfriend was a great cook and he made really, yummy food. He also introduced me to lots of different foods I hadn’t really had a lot of exposure to.  Thai, Chinese, Indian, BBQ, etc.  There wasn’t very much of the new cuisine that was healthy! And dessert, particularly ice cream, was the rule, not the exception.

A lot of my time in the evening had been spent going to the gym.  I did lots of late night workouts before.  Now, if we weren’t hanging out, we were probably playing computer games.  My workouts were not physical except my hands on the keyboard. and running across virtual worlds, doesn’t really count!  Because playing the game was a huge priority, meals were often delivered so that we didn’t have to waste time cooking.  Sadly, our Chinese food delivery guy ended up getting so comfortable delivering to us that he’d just come on it and sit down and chat.  (I do want to brag that I used to get steamed vegetables!)

I was also in  graduate school, which added another layer of stress, time suck, and being sedentary.  I did try and walk to my classes from my apartment, which allowed me SOME exercise.  It was a few blocks more than comfortable so it was a decent amount of steps.  I made a new friend my second year of graduate school who had a summer job working for 2 of the most addictive men I’ve ever met: Ben and Jerry.

She came to school with a freezer full of ice cream pints.  Some we had never had before, and some that weren’t sold in stores.  She filled our freezer.  She filled a freezer at school.  There was ice cream everywhere and it was all yummy.  In the downtime for school we turned to food. When we studied, there was food.  We discovered the wonderful taste of cookie dough in a tub.  Sure, it wasn’t meant to be eaten with a spoon, but it sure was great.

I don’t mean to throw my grad school friends and boyfriend under the bus.  We also tried to do more workout things. I used to do 3 mile walks with the boyfriend.  My grad school friends and I joined Curves and did water aerobics.  We tried to cook together.  Fajita nights!

Fitness and health were less of a priority than school, relationships and recreation.  Socializing was the norm.  I had no real goals.  At one point I did join Weight Watchers at my work and a good Weight Watchers meeting IS worth it’s weight in gold.  But when we didn’t have enough people to keep it up, and when my grant ended and I was in school full-time, I was back on my own.

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Brushes with Celebrities

 

bb-celebs

I’m a big fan of Beachbody.  I can’t really hide that.  And of course I wouldn’t want to!  I’m super lucky that I’ve had the chance to meet some Beachbody leaders, Super Trainers, and supplement creators in the last year.

I went to a Super Saturday event in Orange County the beginning of 2016 and got to hear the CEO Carl Daikler speak. He’s amazing. He’s so good at getting everyone excited about life.  I’ve seen him speak in person before, but this time I got to have a photo op with him. Super cool.

Flash forward to Summit 2016. My friend and teammate Angel and I got to get a quick photo with Tony Horton, OG Beachbody Super Trainer, in the hotel room before Summit really kicked off.  Look at that SMIZE!  We were super lucky and he was very nice to accommodate us and use his long arm to take the photo.

I chatted up Dr. Nima Alamdari, the Director of Scientific Affairs at Beachbody when I saw him in the halls.  I had also met him the previous year when the Beachbody Performance line was launched.  I got to talk science stuff with him.  And he let me take a photo.

Randomly, on the street, I got to meet Superfood Hunter Darin Olien, one of the co-creators of Shakeology. I’m a big fan of his philosophy of food, and I love his book Superlife.  I got a photo with him as well and told him that I was having trouble getting my husband to drink his Shakeology daily.  Darin suggested I tie him up and force feed him.  He’s really great!

I won an Instagram contest in October and in December, I got an in-home visit from Autumn Calabrese, the Super Trainer who has brought my favorite programs to life, and her brother Bobby Calabrese.  Together their cooking show Fixate and the Fixate cookbook has helped change how we eat and approach food.  They were honestly just as lovely and wonderful as I could have hoped.  We cooked with them, shopped with them and had some great talks about fitness, food, living in California, and everything else.

My last brush with a Beachbody celebrity was Mr. Tony Horton again.  He spoke at our local Super Saturday and I got a photo op!  Sadly, I couldn’t do his workout because I had an injured shoulder.  But he gave a great Q&A and really brought a lot of things into perspective that I was missing.  Our photo time was brief, but he called me Sweetheart, and can you really ask for anything else?

One of my wildest dreams is to be Beachbody famous myself.  I want to be a top coach, have an incredible result to share, and keep inspiring  other people to go for it.  I want to talk on the National Wake Up Call, and in front of the crowd at a Super Saturday. Until I’m legit famous, I’ll have out with the elite when I can.

Speed bumps happen to the best of us.

I’m at home in Maine for awhile.  All in all, this trip is lasting 3 weeks.  It’s been really hard at times to live across the country from friends, family, and where I grew up.  I’m more and more of a Californian every day, but I am still a Maine girl.  Definitely one of the biggest reasons that I am a Beachbody Coach is so that I can have the flexibility to be somewhere other than home in San Diego and still do my job.  My parents are getting older.  My friends have kids I want to know.  Social media lets us maintain relationships with people we knew in our pasts that we want to keep building.

Heading up for a walk.

Heading up for a walk.

I thought I prepared so well for this trip.  I packed plenty of clothes (probably too many).  I brought stuff to work out in. I brought a bunch of Beachbody program DVDs.  I brought tons of Shakeology.  I brought the new Beachbody Performance sample pack.  I fully intended to do my business from wherever I was.

Guess what?  $hit happens. I haven’t been on the ball.  I’ve managed some great walks and I’ve been to spin classes, but I haven’t been able to work my program remotely.  If it’s not a DVD player that isn’t hooked up, it’s a TV that’s in constant use for crime dramas.  These speed bumps don’t add up to much more than excuses and yet here they are.

Without getting in to much detail, there’s been some pretty heavy stuff going on with my family.  I’m dealing with it as best I can, but I have found myself sliding back into some dark places and some bad habits.  My disordered eating has been scratching at my brain.  It’s a comforting way to deal with stressors.  Only, it’s not that comforting. I see the patterns starting to form and this has been the first day I’ve been able to successfully pull the brakes on it.  No doubt, by telling 2 people close to me about it, separately, it made it real and it made my brain wake up a little.

I can only change what’s happening now and I can only try my best and set myself up for good things down the road.  I think that it means, I need to leave my time with my parents and get to a more neutral space where I can map out my own plan for the rest of my time here.  I need to not fall apart.

I accept, whole heartedly, than I am not perfect.  This isn’t any more than most people handle.  I can do this. I just have to remind myself of it and get on the right track.

My number one priority in life is my health.  MY HEALTH. I need to serve that priority in everything I do.

5 Reasons Why 21 Day Fix is Awesome

Last year Beachbody released the 21 Day Fix and all hell broke loose.  People, mostly women, all over the country were losing their minds over tupperware.  The backorder was CRAZY.  I admit that I didn’t jump on the 21 Day Fix train until I went to a live event and worked out with Autumn Calabrese, the trainer behind the 21 Day Fix.  I loved the workout and her energy was incredible.  I was a fan ever since.

I half assed did the meal plan for a couple of days, and concentrated on doing the entire workout program – which I finished.  It was fun!

Last month I committed to 21 days of eating by Autumn’s rules.  The eating plan was a success and I lost 6 lb in a month without doing anything crazy.  This is what I learned:

1. Whatever you thought of your “healthy” diet – you were wrong.

I thought I ate pretty healthy.  I mean, I knew there was room for improvement, but surely it wasn’t that bad, right?  Well, when you really get down to the nitty gritty, it’s surprising to see how many pitfalls you have.  My biggest lesson is I don’t eat enough vegetables.  Seriously, I had such a hard time getting them all in.  I was putting spinach in eggs and smoothies by the end of it.  Hiding zucchini in my meals was not inspired – it was necessary.  My old stand by of roasted cauliflower was good and all, but it wasn’t enough.

2. There’s a difference between eating less and eating right.

The “yellow” containers were more or less carbs.  My previous wins on the food frontier usually involved watching my carbohydrates.  It more or less works for me.  This isn’t a PSA about low carb.  Yellow containers can be anything from sweet potato, beans, grains, to bread.  There is definitely a difference in quality here.  I get way more satisfaction and benefit from eating the more nutritional yellows, but knowing the option for something else was helpful.

I ended up eating a whole lot, much more than I imagined, but because my portions of each food type were in check, I felt great.  I didn’t feel awful and starved all that much.  (I just have to admit that I had one night where I screamed for ice cream.) I didn’t feel like I had restricted myself terribly or that I was missing out.  It was just that I had to eat different stuff than I was used to.

3. A diet that lets you have wine?!?!

Oh yes.  That yellow container? A couple times a week you can swap it out for a glass of wine.  In my January round I had a wonderful Cabernet Sauvignon out with a friend and it felt awesome to know I was having a drink but I was also staying on track and in plan.  It wasn’t a cheat, it was just a treat.  And my other work had been so on-point that I knew this was something I could do for myself.  I enjoyed it SO MUCH, and savored every single drop.

4. There’s a workout called the Dirty 30.

The workouts are really fun.  The variety is awesome.  Maybe I am not the biggest fan on Pilates, but once a week, I can do the Pilates Fix and be okay with it.  I knew Autumn was my spirit-trainer when she kept yelling at the DJ to TURN IT UP when I attended the live event.  She brings that energy and care in to each of her workouts.

They are fun, and the build on each other.  And with only 30 minutes, she makes you bring your A game but gives you the precious seconds you need to recover after pushing yourself to the limit.  She organizes them in to rounds and this makes it easy to understand what’s coming next and what you have left to do in the workout for the day.

Cardio, flexibility, resistance, body weight – it’s all there and it’s all enjoyable.

5. You can do anything for 21 days.  And if that’s not enough, you can do another 21 days or go EXTREME!

My biggest obstacle with any eating plan or long term athletic goal is I know that life happens and it puts me in odds with my achiever inner self.  I want to do everything right.  But, there are bad days.  And there are events.  And it’s really easy for me to throw in the towel.  So when there is a long program or say, I imagine life without ice cream – I panic.  And if I actually do get started, I’ll sabotage myself along the way.

The reason the Whole30 and the 21 Day Fix worked for me is I know that I can pull it together and give a good effort for a fixed period of time.  And if there is a light at the end of that tunnel – even better.  In 21 days that pint of ice cream will be there.  I know that I might change in that 21 day period and I might not want the ice cream.  That’s okay.  But I’m not telling myself I can’t ever have it again, because that’s just going to send me right out to the store.  When I look back on what I’ve achieved in the time frame, I’m always amazed.  I thought I was the ultimate badass for completing a Whole30.  I’m so proud of my losses from the 21 Day Fix. That gives me the confidence to do it again.

Speaking of doing it again – that’s the best part.  You can turn around and do another 21 Day Fix after you finish one, or you can do what I did and give yourself a weekend off, and start again.

Now Autumn’s released the 21 Day Fix Extreme in case you want more of a challenge.  The eating plan is based on the same principles, but with less leeway for extra treats (wine) and more of a focus on fine tuning results.  The workouts are also dialed up.  Whereas 21 Day Fix was for beginners, 21 Day Fix Extreme is for people looking to blast through their expectations.  I have no doubt I’ll try it at some point, but I’m not sure I’m ready yet!

If anything I’ve said here interests YOU, please feel free to reach out to me through the blog, find me on Facebook, or let me be your FREE coach!

21days

 

Professional Eating Season

Professional Eating Season is what my trainer Rick calls the season between Halloween and New Years.  Basically, all of the Fall.  It does sure seem like every event is based around food and there’s no lack of indulgence anywhere you look.  Seasonal flavors are the rage, and usually come along with a hefty sugar tax.  Coworkers are cooking and bringing in treats.  Kids are bringing home candy.  And then there are those OMG meals that take all day to make and you end up eating them all week.

I made it through Halloween without eating any candy.  We went to our friends’ for Thanksgiving so that meant no leftovers.  I’ve made a dessert to share, and went a little overboard in Las Vegas during the marathon weekend.  This is crunch time.

I have realistic expectations when it comes to my diet.  I’m not going to be perfect, but I always find that when I have guidelines and deadlines, it sets me up for success.  So for the next 21 days I am going to be taking part in a challenge with my online Beachbody team.  It starts with a Shakeology cleanse, which works great for me because I have a surplus and pretty busy days for the start of the week.

Wouldn’t it be great to hit January 1 without the resolution hanging over your head after going off the rails for the holidays?  I intend to be a my lowest weight of the year on January 1st – not doing penance for few months of living like a cupcake rockstar.

This year will be different.

This year will be different.

Here’s the thing…

Whenever we want to change up our lives we always have the best intentions.  We get excited.  We buy stuff.  We throw ourselves in to it.  Eventually the newness wears off and it gets to be business as usual, if we are lucky.  Most of us end up not doing so well and quitting.  Then, we tell ourselves that it’s our fault.  We didn’t have enough willpower, we didn’t want it enough.  We didn’t deserve it after all.

I think that’s crap.

We are constantly evolving.  There are going to be phases in your life where something is interesting, and then it maybe isn’t as interesting.  Maybe a workout gives you results then you plateau.  Same thing with changing up your diet.  If there was ONE solid answer to being healthy, don’t you think we’d have found it by now and stick to doing it?

There are always going to be new things coming, and you’re doing yourself a favor if you try stuff.  Embrace change.  Take some chances.  Some stuff comes and goes, but habits last a lifetime.  As long as you’re in the game to make yourself as healthy as possible you’re working on building those lifelong habits.

Forgive yourself.  You didn’t fail your diet.  You didn’t cheat on your exercise.  You’re just finding out what works for you right now.

I'm not saying that Shakeology is going to be my breakfast until I'm 65.  Maybe, but who knows.  For right now, it's my game changer.

I’m not saying that Shakeology is going to be my breakfast until I’m 65. Maybe, but who knows. For right now, it’s my game changer.