21 Days Later

A few posts ago, I shared my plan to try out Beachbody's 21 Day Fix, a 21-day fitness program and healthy eating plan focused on portion control. Well, the 21 days have come and gone, and I'm here to share my results.

So. Without further ado:

I guess that pretty much sums it up, but you know I have to go into more detail than that.

First off, these last three weeks have taught me an immensely important lesson:

The scale is not everything.

Yeah, of course I'd heard that before. I've even preached it before to other people. But I must admit, when I was working my tail off day after day with Autumn Calabrese, guzzling tons of water, eating the right foods, and using my little portion control containers perfectly, I was pretty stinking bummed when I kept weighing in and seeing the scale move in the wrong direction. 

Thankfully, I followed Beachbody's advice and took my measurements on the first and last days of the program. I was so, so, SO happy when I realized I'd lost over six inches in three weeks, and two of them in the most dangerous problem area of all: my waist! 

But it's not just these tangible measurements that reveal my progress. In all these years of working out now, I have never felt this strong or energetic. I just feel good! 

That first week, I struggled to get through the workouts. I had to do a lot of modified moves, and I couldn't get off my knees at all for push-ups or planks. The program requires two sets of weights for the exercises- a heavy set and a light set. I started out using 2.5 lbs for my light weights and 5 lbs for my heavy (yeah, I haven't tried to do any kind of strength-training in over a year). By the middle of week two, the 2.5 lbs were doing absolutely nothing for me, and the 5 lbs didn't seem challenging enough for the exercises. 

So, I bumped it up to 5 lbs for lights and 10 lbs for heavy. And before I knew it, I was holding planks and doing push-ups off my knees for the first time ever. 

And, well, by Day 21, I saw something I've never seen on myself before. MUSCLES. 

Yes, can't you see them?! A little definition rising from the flab? It may not look like much to most people, but it is a huge change for this flabby weakling!

I'm attributing this to the Shakeology. It's far more than just protein powder, but it is protein powder. I've never used any kind of superfood supplements like this with my workouts, and it's gotta be what's making the big difference in the muscle department. 

(On a side note, I'm also 99% sure the natural ingredients in Shakeology are helping my skin, too. I've just been noticing recently how clear my face has gotten, and you can actually see it in the above unedited, makeup-less pics. A couple of people actually commented the other day that I have a "glow"; somebody even asked if I was pregnant. lol Gotta be that maca powder!)

I'm incredibly thankful that my husband was willing to do this program with me. As you can see, he had some pretty great results, too! The way our schedules are right now, the only way we could make these workouts happen was by getting up before work together each day at 4:45 AM. We usually started workouts by 5, finished between 5:30-5:40, made our shakes, and headed off to work. It became routine before too long, though Daylight Savings Time REALLY made it difficult for a while. 

Aside from the accountability of my husband, the other thing I really loved about this experience was my challenge group. Every day, each of us participants signed into the app and logged our workout and Shakeology (if applicable). 

We also posted ratings of our nutrition, workout performance, and water consumption for the day for the group to see. We used a scale of 1-5 (1= you blew it; 5= you knocked it out of the park). This was very effective for the perfectionist in me, who was severely bothered with anything less than a 5. This little rating system made me try way harder.

I loved getting positive feedback from my coach and other challengers on a daily basis. It was highly motivating!

Okay, so, now I'm gonna get really real and discuss the issues I had with the 21 Day Fix. I gave you the pros. Now for some cons.  

1) Autumn Calabrese's little sayings.

For me, one of Beachbody's biggest turn-offs is the fact that you're always watching videos. If you're doing one of their fitness programs, you're gonna have to watch the same video over and over a few times throughout the process. 

That's fine. Actually, it can be sorta great. You don't have to drive anywhere. You don't have to deal with the weather outside. There's no one around to watch/judge you like at the gym. 

But. When you watch the same videos over and over, you start to notice things. Little things. Little things that turn into really annoying things. Like, how Autumn says "Let's have a little looksie" 20 times in one workout or how she repeatedly instructs her followers onscreen to "Drop it like it's hot." And the way she says booty over and over again: "Really squeeze that booty", "Lower that booty", "Keep your booty under you", "Feel it in the sides of your booty." 

Oh! And the way she says "Yah" at the end of her sentences, like she's one of Steven Avery's cousins from Manitowoc County (Oh man. Can we talk about Making of a Murderer some time?!? Maybe I should do a post about my theories...).

I know this is just me being picky. Autumn was great. She's a good instructor, and her yoga instruction was perfection. These silly little things just got a bit irritating after a while.

And well, we just miss Tony Horton.

2) You will NOT get "the body you always wanted" in 21 days. 

This bothered me to no end. This is not, and should not be, a 21 day solution. It does not end after 21 days; it only begins. These 21 days should be considered a reset, a place to start and establish healthy habits that you will carry with you from now on. The first 21 days is just Round One. 

And on that note, most of the stunning results you see from the 21 Day Fix? If you look at the fine print, the person in the photos only achieved their success after completing 2+ rounds of the 21 Day Fix. 

If you really want to change your life, you cannot quit after 21 days. This is why Matt and I have already begun Round Two of the program.

3) There were times when the workouts didn't seem challenging enough. 

Though I've definitely gotten lazy and let myself go, I've still come a long way since I weighed 240 pounds. I think I'm at a somewhat intermediate level at this point. I guess because of this, the 21 Day Fix seems geared more toward beginners. 

Don't get me wrong. That first week was pretty rough. After my first leg day, I had trouble walking the floor at work, changing positions, and going up and down stairs.

But by week two, I didn't feel as sore or as worked as I should have. I didn't always feel like I was pushing myself. So, to kick it up another notch, this time, during Round Two, we're going to do the Doubles Option, where you do two workouts a day during the last week of the round. 

There isn't really much more to say about my first 21 days with Autumn. Though I was bummed about my mere 2 pound weight loss, I am so thrilled to have lost over 6 inches. I am ecstatic about seeing some muscle definition! I'm excited to keep going, and I am seriously loving the way my body feels! 


Regine Karpel said...


Anna Marie Schaefer said...

Happy to see your results. Obviously the reason the scale change much is because of those new guns of yours!

Jennifer Oliver said...

Thanks, Regine and Anna! lol Oh yeah, these guns are smokin'. Wait til round two is over! ;)