21 Days. DONE.
Talk about feeling accomplished, feeling empowered, feeling unstoppable… THAT is what this program did for me. I can’t wait to tell you about my 21 day journey, but first let me take you back…
My first experience with The 21 Day Fix was exactly one year ago. You can read about that experience here. I did the “original” Fix program and got THE BEST results I have ever gotten in that time frame, with only 30 minute workouts. I was hooked. I have been a fan/ advocate of the Fix ever since! I did make it to my “goal weight” with the Fix, but fast forward to November…. where it all starts going downhill. It doesn’t help at all that I have my birthday, my dads birthday, and Thanksgiving smacked right in the middle, all in the SAME week. Can someone say #foodcoma ? As if that wasn’t enough…. here comes Christmas. I also love baking and creating sweet treats- so that does’t help my cause (Lord, why did you make me a sweets lover? lol!). Now we make it to January. The parties are over, but the winter funk has set in and is prepared to take its full course of action. Say hello to lack of motivation and the vicious cycle of carb and sweet cravings. Just when I thought I would never make it out of the slump, the new 21 Day Fix Extreme came sweeping in for the rescue!
21 Day Fix Extreme is a step up (ok quite a few steps up) from the original program. This program is designed by celebrity fitness trainer, Autumn Calabrese, to “get you shredded.” It is for people who want to lose that last 5 pounds or get those muscles exceptionally toned. Unlike the first Fix, which ANYONE at any fitness level can do, Extreme is designed for people who already have a workout routine in place. If you are looking for a new challenge, THIS is it.
MY FIX EXTREME STORY
I love the Fix, because I love a challenge. I do very well with structure. However, this time I decided to go at the program with a different mindset. I decided that I would not step on the scale until the end. I took “before” pictures and measurements and weighed. However, I decided that this time I would focus on how I FELT rather than the physical changes. I tend to get discouraged if I don’t start seeing results when I am working so hard, so I knew the only way to not let myself get down was to throw the numbers out the door! Little did I know that this would be a life changing victory for me!
I didn’t weigh (although i was tempted) for 21 days. I gauged everything on how I felt and how my clothes fit. The first few days were hard. I was still having cravings. The workouts were TOUGH. But I kept pressing on. I knew from the original Fix that I could trust the process. By the end of the first week, I was feeling a ridiculously high motivation. I FINALLY felt good because I was fueling my body with the right foods and I wasn’t feeling deprived because when you eat the right foods, you get to eat more! By the end of the second week, I could care less about the scale. I comfortably put on a pair of jeans that had been tight since Christmas!! Starting the third week i felt UNSTOPPABLE. I could resist any cake that came my way and pizza? nah, I’d rather have something that would make me feel good, not leave me feeling gross! The workouts were getting easier (because I was getting stronger) and I could push harder! But do you want to know what the most amazing thing was? I was HAPPY. I was genuinely happy. I wasn’t feeling tied to the scale so I didn’t have to worry about the anxiety of stepping on it. I felt good in my clothes (so what does the scale matter anyway? Why do we let it ruin a day when we were feeling good before we stepped on it!). For the first time in my life I was seeing PROGRESS unrelated to numbers. Do you have any idea how FREEING that is? So, no matter my final “physical” results, I was already SO HAPPY with these seriously life changing victories! You just have to trust the process!
Now, I know you are all wanting to know my physical results. I did the “Countdown to Competition” Nutrition plan. I did have to deviate some (I have Type 1 Diabetes so I have to treat low blood sugars sometimes), but for the most part I stuck with the plan. I did allow myself dairy products and didn’t follow Autumn’s plan to the T.
I lost 5 pounds and 5 inches overall in just 21 days!
Q & A
- What is 21 Day Fix Extreme?
It is a 21 Day workout and clean eating program/ challenge. There is a 30 minute workout on DVD every day of the week with 2 “active” rest days (pilates and yoga). The nutrition plan comes with color coded, portion sized containers for each food group (carbs, protein, veggies, fruit, healthy fats). Based on your calorie needs, you get a specified number of “containers” to eat each day. There is no guess work, no calorie counting, no macro configuring. Just fill up the containers and eat! You also get to drink Shakeology (only the most delicious superfood meal replacement shake ever!) once a day! Shakeology is important on this program because it is FULL of vitamins, minerals, greens, superfoods, and all the nutrients you can imagine! When working your body this hard, it is important to fuel it properly! Shakeology not only tastes like a treat milkshake, but it delivers the nutrients you body needs to get the best results.
Here is one of my yummy shakes. Shakeology also makes delicious PANCAKES that are Fix approved!
- How is the Fix Extreme different from the original 21 Day Fix?
The workouts are definitely next, next, next level. There are basically 2 leg days which both involve plyo or jumping. This can be modified, however. The jumping is slow and controlled (not like Insanity lol). Otherwise the programs are set up the same. The workouts include Plyo Fix, Upper Fix, Pilates Fix, Lower Fix, Cardio Fix, Dirty 30 (total body with weights), and Yoga. One workout every day, each 30 minutes (ok a couple are 33 minutes).
There are 2 options for the nutrition plan. The first one is very similar to the original Fix plan, but this time there are no treats “allowed”- hardcore 21 days! The second option is called “Countdown to Competition”. This is Autumns personal plan to get into bikini competition shape! The plan involves 2 days of “competition plan” eating and 1 day of regular fix plan alternating. The competition plan is mostly protein and veggies with a little healthy fats and minimal carbs (I did this plan and it honestly wasn’t that hard. I felt fueled and was never starving. I think it definitely helped diminish my sweet cravings, because it cuts down on fruit intake as well). The new plan also has some seriously YUMMY recipes like the hearty beef stew below. This plan is NOT about deprivation. You get plenty of food!
- How much cardio is in the workout schedule
There is one specified cardio day which is Cardio Fix Extreme. This workout also uses weights- talk about a killer combo! Although, it is the only cardio “labeled” day, Plyo Extreme and Lower Fix Extreme can be considered cardio as well. There is plyometrics (jumping) in both of these workouts so your heart rate is up, up, up!
- Should I do the original 21 Day Fix before doing Extreme?
If you do not have a good workout routine in place (working out 4 days a week for the last month or so) or need more education/ practice on eating clean, whole foods- I would suggest doing the original program first and then graduate to Extreme. However, if you have a workout routine in place and are ready for a new challenge + want to dial in your nutrition- Fix Extreme is for you!
- How much “meal prep” is involved?
Meal prep is a term used to explain preparing food ahead of time. Prepping food like meat (chicken, ground turkey, fish), big batches of veggies, carbs (quinoa, brown rice, sweet potatoes), and salads tends to make grab and go throughout the week easier, especially when you are trying to eat a certain kind of food/number of meals a day. Being prepared is key! Meal prep was super easy with this program, if not easier than the original 21 Day Fix. If on the competition nutrition plan, there aren’t as many options, so you get used to what you can eat pretty quick! I personally didn’t do a ton of prep, because I knew what I would be eating every day. I did prepare ground turkey, chicken in the crockpot, and steamed veggies ahead of time. It saves time to just prepare it for the whole week! It also saves on that grocery budget, because you know exactly what you need.
- Do I recommend this program?