Last Monday, Bruce and I started our 21 Day Fix round… together! I decided to write about the entire experience with a weekly blog post over the next three weeks. I’ll be breaking it down into nutrition (what did we eat?), fitness (how did our workouts go?), difficulties (what did we struggle with?) and successes (what did we totally rock?). So, without further ado – WEEK ONE!
Before starting our 21 Day Fix, I did ALL of our meal prepping. I’m used to meal prepping for myself, but meal prepping for me AND Bruce wasn’t as easy as I thought. Mainly because Bruce gets SO much more food than I do (lucky bastard). So, to make things easy, I used three of the pre-formulated meal plans from the Beachbody blog! I searched for ones for my calorie bracket (“A”, the lowest) and then added in things to Bruce’s to bulk his up to “D”, the highest bracket. That way we were still eating the same thing so I didn’t have to make two different meals throughout the week, and Bruce could get enough food.
Sticking to the meal plan is always what gets me off track in my health and fitness journey. I knew that this time, I had to be on point. I prepped and got us prepared on Sunday night so that Monday morning we were off and running (with our egg cups in hand). I will tell you, doing this with your spouse is INCREDIBLE! Bruce has totally embraced the entire process, especially the meal plan. That’s made all the difference I think for me. We can stay on track, AND enjoy each other’s company in the evening… because we’re actually eating food, not starving ourselves!
Some of my favorite recipes from this past week were: tuna melts, sweet potato hash, and spaghetti squash with chicken sausage. All three took hardly any time to make and were so delicious! I’ll be posting those recipes throughout the week, so keep an eye on the blog under the “Recipes” section! Two came directly from the Beachbody website and one I just made up on my own!
The 21 Day Fix consists of seven workouts, five of which are cardio/weight based and two of which are “active recovery” days (pilates and yoga). Bruce and I jumped right into the workouts, which I thought was a huge success! When I think Beachbody, my mind doesn’t immediately think of 21 Day Fix workouts as crazy insane and super intense… but it had been quite a while since I had done them. The cool thing about these workouts is that you can make them whatever you want! If you want to modify, you can. If you want to crank it up to 100, you can!
I had several other things going on this week in terms of fitness, including teaching classes, practicing for an upcoming audition, and coming straight off of the marathon. Bruce also had soccer on Sunday that he needed to be fresh for. So while we made sure to get all of our seven workouts in, we did modify a bit in terms of the moves and weights, just to make sure we weren’t killing ourselves for the other things we needed to do! Like all programs, when you first start, the soreness can really kick in. Now that we’ve completed the first week, we’re confidently heading into week two ready to kick up the intensity and add heavier weights!
OK, so first let’s talk about the opportunities we had this week. Here’s our biggest challenge, Bruce doesn’t eat. It’s not a struggle for him to stick to the meal plan, because this fool just doesn’t. eat. food. I don’t understand it… because I’m constantly snacking throughout the day, but Bruce can literally wake up, work all day, maybe eat lunch (maybe), then eat dinner, and that’s it. So, for this first week it was focused a lot on actually EATING! When you regularly don’t eat for long periods of time, your body goes into starvation mode and holds onto fat, actually NOT allowing you to lose weight. So this week Bruce really focused on eating breakfast, and a mid-morning snack plus lunch a snack before his workout and then a healthy dinner… big win!
Another difficulty can me monotony with recipes. Yes, it makes it MUCH easier to meal prep and cook when you’re eating the same thing over and over, but it gets boring. So I tried to do the same meals but then also throw in some healthy new recipes throughout the week to spice it up (and stay within the meal plan… hence how the spaghetti squash was born). Really, this wasn’t a HUGE difficulty and actually ended up being a fun way for me to mix it up and learn how to create new recipes out of ingredients on hand, while still sticking to the meal plan.
Final difficulty, going out with friends. We had an amazing day with two new friends in Alexandria on Saturday. Celebrating, talking business, and getting to know each other. We went to a ridiculously amazing restaurant for a late lunch and then a rooftop bar for drinks. Normally, this would be the point at which I continue on with the fitness portion of a program and completely derail myself on nutrition. But instead, I prepared and conquered! I limited my yellow containers the day before and day of in preparation for drinks, and I ended up only going a container or two over for that day! It’s all about being realistic and knowing that sometimes you’ll have things pop up and how to set yourself up for success when they do!
We had some awesome success this first week. Starting with jumping into the workouts. Starting on day one, both Bruce and I kicked it off and didn’t miss a single day. We modified when needed, but pushed ourselves to complete all 30 minutes each day, and that was huge! We were also still able to stick with our regularly scheduled exercise, like Bruce’s soccer and my teaching. While we didn’t workout together (there’s not enough room in our “home gym” for me plus a 6’6″ giant at the same time), we got a good routine going of timing with our workouts to go one right after the other.
The other success was actually sticking to the meal plan! I’ve talked about this before, but I could workout all day long with no issues… it’s nutrition that I struggle with. I know that if I want to see results and continue to be an example of health and fitness for my challengers and my class participants that I HAVE to stick with my nutrition plan. The “little cheats” here and there had begun to add up to all out war with my containers and not abiding by them at all. Lots of take out, lots of delivery, not a lot of veggies, etc. So sticking with the meal plan, even with a celebration on Saturday, was a HUGE win for us. And it’s also great because once you get over that initial hump and really start sticking with it daily, your body becomes used to not needing all of the empty calories and you become less hungry. Fueling my body RIGHT was a major success and I’m excited to keep going for the next two weeks!
Keep an eye out at the beginning of next week for an update on how the next seven days have gone… and how Bruce and I will tackle staying on plan during Thanksgiving!