Revisiting the 21 Day Fix

I’ve done a few rounds of the 21 Day Fix.  I’ve always loved the length of the program because I can totally schedule 21 days of workouts in the life.  3 weeks is a really achievable time frame.  When you finish, you feel accomplished.  Some time last year I decided that I was beyond 21 Day Fix.  I could go Extreme.  So I did!  I finished a few rounds of 21 Day Fix Extreme and THEN Autumn’s program – The Master’s Hammer & Chisel (twice).  I felt like I was a pro or something.

Haha.

Isn’t that always what happens?  You get cocky.

 

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I’m doing a new challenge with Autumn – Your Fit Journey.  It started earlier this month and in it you do ALL 4 of her programs, back to back.  I have done all the programs so I thought, no problem.  And we started with 21 Day Fix.  I definitely  thought I’d be golden.

Coming off another program, I was ready.  I even had to overlap the two for a couple days.  No problem.  This was just 21 Day Fix.  I was ALL. OVER. THIS.

And then, the first move on the first day.  Surrenders.  Ugh.  The worst exercise for someone with hip flexor weakness.  Let me tell you something true.  This is not an easy program.  Sure it is approachable for beginners and I usually recommend it for beginners, but it is as tough as you want to make it.  And even though I think I’m badass, I’m modifying.  I’m pausing for a drink because it is GO time for 30 min.

It was totally hubris to think I outgrew this program. I was familiar with the program and probably ready for a change and a challenge.  But it was never EASY.  I was never BEYOND it.  So to everyone I’ve recommended the program to: it’s really great isn’t it? I’m right there with you and I have so much respect for ALL of us that finish each round.

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10 Reasons You Shouldn’t Work Out at Home.

You can only get a good workout at a gym.

Home is supposed to be relaxing.

Unless you have a team of professionals monitoring you, you’ll never get fit.

Paying a club fee keeps you accountable.

No one ever got a good workout on their own.

You don’t have a DVD player anymore anyway.

There’s no way you can actually stop watching Netflix long enough to throw in a workout.

You have no equipment to do any of those fancy moves.

There’s no way you can sweat without someone yelling at you.

Your pet/spouse/child won’t leave you alone long enough to have time to yourself to work out.

Does any of this sound familiar? It should.  We are continually sabotaging ourselves from any of the healthy choices we need to make by the voices we listen to.  Sometimes they are in our head, from experiences we’ve had.  And sometimes they are from people in our lives.  They can even be from society and culture in general!  It can get pretty overwhelming and I have to admit that I’ve listened to them, too.

I have done lots of things in my fitness life.  I’ve been a member of gyms.  I’ve been gone regularly!  I’ve taken classes in a devotional fashion.  I’ve run on the streets, in traffic, where everyone can see me.  I’ve worked with personal trainers.  I’ve been in small group circuit training classes.  I’ve met up with friends to do fit stuff out in the world.  I’ve even run a fitness class outside of my house!

But I ALSO workout at home.

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Getting PUMPED up at home.

 

I used to think that the act of getting dressed and getting in the car was what I needed to make sure I didn’t drop out of my workout routine.  I admit, I’ve never turned around on my way to a gym. I also get dressed and head downstairs, fire up my Apple TV and drink my pre workout Energize.  That’s my NEW ritual to get going.  I’ve bagged gym workouts when I pushed too hard.  I’ve surrendered during home workouts when I haven’t had it in me.

The thing I had to change was my mindset.  I had to question the truth of all of those 10 statements.  The funny thing is, there’s a little truth in them, but there’s also a whole lot of excuses and fear.

The gym isn’t the answer, running isn’t the answer, and working out along to a program at home isn’t the answer.  You are the answer.  You have to find what’s going to work FOR YOU.  And what that is will change.  You will change.  Tomorrow’s solutions aren’t the same as yesterday’s – otherwise we would just be doing the same thing over and over again  until things were perfect.  Shit happens. Conditions will change.  Your metabolism will change.  What you like will change.  What challenges you, will change.  You may have a physical set back, which will change what you need.  You will get stronger, better, faster, more awesome.  You’ll have to seek out new mountains to conquer.  That’s the greatest part about being a human!

The at-home thing works for me now.  I get to pick from a bunch of programs.  I’m close to my own shower, which I know doesn’t have plantar warts growing in it.  I can even access them when I’m traveling. (Like the time I did the line dancing workout in a tiny hotel room.)  But I can ALSO go swim some laps, go for a run, go the the gym and lift some weights.

I can do anything I want, and that’s totally okay.  But I DO stuff.  It’s often easier to START at home.  The gym is scary.  People driving by you when you are trying to run on the street, that’s intimidating.  If I need the people portion, I can workout with a friend at home or find the friends on Facebook who are also doing the same thing as I am.  That way, I have a gym buddy, anytime, anyplace, anywhere.

So forget what you think about working out at home.  It’s as awesome as you want to make it.  And it’s pretty great when you let it.

Progress Photos are Scary!

**This post actually came from my Facebook page.  I can’t freaking believe I put this photo on there, on here, heck, I even sent it to an ex-boyfriend.  Why?  Because I’m not hiding.  I’m DOING this.  I’m a normal person and I’ve got normal person feelings.  So someone else who is a normal person with normal person feelings needs to know he is not alone.**

The first time I joined a challenge group here on Facebook, my coach Jamie wanted me to send her before photos. I immediately got a lump in my throat. I didn’t want to take photos and I certainly didn’t want to share them with someone I’ve never met.

I mean, let’s get real, we only post the best of the best photos of ourselves when it means other people can see it. We know the angles, we know the lighting, we know the filters. And when you’re struggling with your weight and you finally decide to take a risk and try something new, there’s just so much “new” you can take.

But I took my before photos and I sent them to her. And I’ve sent her photos since then. And I’ve taken some for myself and kept them on folders in my computer I never visit.

I revisited them today at her suggestion. She provided me with a 2014 photo – not even the start of my Beachbody story. The other photo is last week. I still have a long way to go but I’m so grateful for the road it has taken to get here so far.

January 2014 - September 2015

January 2014 – September 2015

So take your before photos. Get your significant other or best friend to take photos of you in workout clothes. You don’t have to obsess over them, tuck them away in a folder, send them to your coach. (I’d love to be your coach!) And when you’re ready to see how far you’ve come, bring them back out into the light.

Oh yeah – and if you turn in your before and after photos, along with a Beachbody program completion, you get a t-shirt and can win $1000.

When You Don’t Reach a Goal.

I’ve always been a bit afraid of setting goals.  As a perfectionist child, I never wanted to let anyone down. If I made a promise, I kept it.  If I didn’t, I felt terrible.  Goals were always promises I made.  Promises to myself, promises to those around me… it didn’t really matter.  I’ve been encouraged to set goals, and so I’ve tried.  Honestly, most of the time I have no idea where to start.

One year ago I found myself at Beachbody Summit in Las Vegas, staring down a giant wall that said “Never Give Up.”  We could write our goals down.  Since I was overcome by the high of being in a convention center of pure blissful awesomeness, I wrote my goal.  I’ll share it with you now.

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Well, here it is a year later and I have to tell you where I’m at with those goals.  I haven’t lost 50 lb.  That’s probably the biggest one for me.  My health is my #1 priority.  I wanted to make that goal happen tremendously badly.

I am not a Diamond Coach.  I’m a solid Emerald.  If you aren’t in the Beachbody world that doesn’t mean a lot to you.  Basically, I haven’t moved my business forward much at all since this time last year.  Overall, I have fewer coaches in my little team, and they are less involved overall.  I haven’t been a leader to get them on their way and I haven’t inspired new people to join my team.

Not giving up anytime, ever.  This one, I feel like I kept.  Initially I felt like I must have given up because my forward momentum stalled.  But here’s the thing.  I’m still here.  I’m going to Summit again.  I’m still a coach.  I’m still working the Beachbody programs for myself and for others.  I’m still passionate about this company.  I still feel like it’s the place where I can do the most good.

I joined a DietBet over a month ago.  I present to you the results on this Transformation Tuesday.

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Well, as you can tell by my hands – it wasn’t a moment of victory.  I had 1 month to lose 4% of my body weight.  I thought it would be easy.  I put $30 on the line.  I think I ended up a few tenths of a pound away from my initial weight in.  I even ran 6 freaking miles a couple days before!

You can’t be shocked when you don’t make your goals.  Writing them down doesn’t magically infuse them into existence.  I wish it worked like that.  They are also not promises I didn’t keep.  They were goals that didn’t get reached because honestly, I didn’t have a plan.  I had a half assed plan that I half assed executed.  So that was a total quarter assed plan.  Of course I’m not going to reach goals if I quarter ass them!

So I’m going to write some new goals tonight.  They aren’t just going to be whispers into the silence of the night.  I am going to write them down and immediately start coming up with a plan.  I’m going to include ways to stay accountable.  I’m not going to freak out if I get off track.  I’m going to adjust accordingly.  I’m not going to make the goals easy so that they will be no sweat to make.  I’m not going to make them too difficult.  I’m going to make realistic goals that genuinely resonate with me and get me further down the path I want to be at in my life.

Watch out for a future blog post titled: “What to Do When You Absolutely Crush Your Goals.

Catch-22 Pounds

One of the things I keep being the most surprised about as I continue to change my life and my habits is that it pretty much impacts my relationships with everyone.

I really thought this was all about me, and if it was a relationship thing – it was my relationship with myself or my relationship with food.  I’m now seeing that the whole book I thought I had written was erased and I’m starting over.  My friends and family are still my friends and family, but there is a definite shift.

I thought once I lost some weight and was more confident, I’d be more social.  After all, I have new clothes to show off, right?  Not exactly.

Progress

It started out that I had to tell friends “no” when it came to Happy Hours.  I was working out with my Boot Camp, or I was just leaving Boot Camp and smelled terrible.  Or sometimes it was that I wasn’t drinking anymore.  Sometimes I was just too tired to drag my ass to a bar!  But I wanted to hang out with my friends.  I tried to make things work when I could.  I had a lot of guilt around it.  But I have to tell you, they were all pretty awesome.  Whenever I would try to apologize for being MIA they wouldn’t hear of it.

Another weird thing, that’s related, is people are just ridiculously proud of me.  From people I knew in Kindergarten, to people I’ve known for a couple of months – I keep getting compliments.  I’m learning how to take them a little better, but it’s still pretty weird for me.  And my gorgeous friends?  They tell me that I INSPIRE THEM.  Which still just makes my head spin because I can’t imagine how that works, but I’ll take it because it’s just pretty darn cool.

So who do I hang out with?  I have a new group of people in my life.  New friends who all work out with me, or near me, or beside me, whatever.  I have my whole Beachbody Team, my upline, my Facebook friends, people I met at Summit.  If I need someone to hike with or vent to, I have plenty of options I didn’t have a year ago.  I also now train with this guy.  He’s a Nurse and a Marine, and he has me doing insane things that I never would have done before.  He has a great way to push me and get me out of my comfort zone, but at the same time, I know I’m well taken care of.  He and his wife and kids have become yet another West Coast family to me.  And now he’s letting my intern with him 3 days a week while I try to make health and fitness the center of my world. 

I’m still very happily married, but my relationship with my husband has changed and is changing all the time with this.  Luckily for me, he’s also very interested in fitness and health.  He understands the workouts and the early morning wake ups.  Unfortunately what he doesn’t always understand is how my time and energy get diverted away from things that need to be done.  When I have a high volume week of workouts, that can mean 6 workouts a day starting at  5 AM.  I pretty much have to spend the week before preparing my LIFE to be on total hold.  All household chores pretty much stop once those workouts start.  So if there’s laundry to be done, too bad.  If there’s dishes to be washed, better get plastic.  Need to make an appointment?  Better block out some time of your day, I won’t have any.  I barely cook.  I workout, eat and sleep.  Repeat as many times as necessary.  That has taken a huge toll out of our symbiosis, and has been the source of many fights.  It doesn’t help that when I’m tired and calorie deprived I’m not exactly a reasonable person.

I’m still trying to figure this all out.  How I can still be a good friend and partner and have my workouts, too.  Some friendships may be slightly on pause since there isn’t as much going out to dinner.  Maybe I’ll continue to get more people on the road to fitness along with me.  But either way, this is something I’m doing for myself, and that’s the most important relationship of all.

Crazy.

Something crazy happened this weekend.  On Saturday morning I cried 3 times before 8AM.

The thing that makes this so unbelievable is that I haven’t cried in a really, really long time.  Other than a few weeks ago when I read the photo essay of a dog’s last day before his owners took him to the park and had the vet meet them there with the needle of peace.  Once in awhile I also get PMS tears.  But these tears came from somewhere else entirely.

I was tired.  I felt defeated and I just had enough.

On the bike.  Again.

On the bike. Again.

Last week was tough.  Internship days were LONG.  Workouts started earlier than I ever even wanted to think about getting up.  My butt got totally chapped from the spin bike, and my hand can’t grip a water glass.  I dissolved in to a punch drunk mess in evening workouts on Wednesday and Friday – complete with doing round house kicks making sound effects like a little kid.

I feel more out of control than ever right now and I’m just hoping this is the point where everything comes together.  Workouts are hard.  I don’t see the changes in my body that other people do.  Money is becoming more of an issue.  My house is a mess and by the time I get home at night and eat dinner I have 30 min before I need to get my ass upstairs and in to bed.  All so I can get up and do it all again.

I want this, I really do.  I’m up for the sacrifice.  But I think there’s a part of me that wonders if I’m going to fail and I’ve just set myself up for it to all fall apart.  And then all these early mornings will be for nothing and I’ll just be a sleep deprived mess who goes off the road on her way home at night.

So yeah, I had that “Biggest Loser” moment of tears and frustration.  But I sucked it up that day, and I sucked it up the next day, and I’ll keep sucking it up.  I’ll keep doing what I’m doing.  I’ll try and take back a little more control over my diet.  I at least got to vacuum my bedroom today and hopefully I sucked up whatever mystery bugs have been biting us in our sleep.