3.23.2015

21 Day Fix, Week One

Well I've done it!  I have officially completed the first week of the 21 Day Fix and I feel GREAT!  Today was the first day of the second week which means I'm already 1/3 of the way through the program - talk about fast!  Time flies when you're changing your life, I suppose!

I wanted to hop on here and share my thoughts on the first week of the program as well as my results!

When I started last week I wasn't sure how it was going to go.  I had never tried any of the workouts before and I hadn't tried the meal plan, either.  Instead of 'dabbling' like I've previously done where I try out a workout or two before I officially begin a program, this time I jumped in feet first - and I'm glad I did!

21 Day Fix Post Partum


The first day was, let's just say, intense.  After not being able to workout for a long while because of having Bonnie Ann and then tweaking my back, I wasn't completely used to working out and my legs reminded me of that fact with every step I took!  Let's not even talk about stairs - those were a trick to maneuver!  The soreness in my legs only lasted a couple days, though, and I knew that they were sore because I was getting stronger which is what I'm going for!

21 Day Fix Sore First Day


Instead of skipping day 2 because I was too sore, I pushed on and buckled down.  My arms and shoulders were a bit sore after day 2 (I really didn't want to shampoo my hair because it requires me to lift my arms up!) but, again, this only last a day or two.  By the end of the week I could already tell I was able to do more, push further and work harder.

I'd be lying if I said I never modified a thing - I definitely used the modifier and I see no shame in admitting it!  With my back so recently screwed up, I'm a bit hesitant to get too crazy with the jumping, so when there were moves that required both feet off the ground at the same time, I almost always modified them.  I was still working up a great sweat, though, so I know it was getting me results!  

21 Day Fix Pilates21 Day Fix workout


The rest of the week went well - I loved pilates and I hated-but-loved Saturday's workout, Dirty 30.  Whoever invented side planks - I'm not a fan of you!




With the 21 Day Fix, though, it is not just about the workouts - in fact it's not even mostly about the workouts!  The real magic of this program is in its meal plan.  When you order the 21 Day Fix, you not only get the complete workout program on DVDs, you also get a collection of color-coded containers and a meal plan booklet that spells out what to eat and how much of it.  It takes all the guesswork out of the meal planning and seriously tells you what to eat!  You don't need to eat diet food or cut out any food group, either.  You can eat whatever you want, it's just changing up your portion sizes!  It tells you how you can still have wine, chocolate, waffles and even pizza - it's great!

21 Day Fix Food


I honestly thought that it would take me a little bit longer to get used to eating from the containers.  I thought it might be difficult to figure out, but I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was!  To think that I have 2 weeks left in the program?  I got this!

As of just this first week, I am down six pounds - SIX!  That is quite a few right out of the gate, and I'm guessing a lot of it was water weight but hey, I'll take it!  My goals for this next week are to once again get all workouts done on the assigned day (one for one so far!) and kick butt on the meal plan - and I'll be back in a week to share how I'm doing!

Had you heard of the 21 Day Fix before?  Are you interested in trying it out?  If so, comment below or email me at ashleykrek@gmail.com - I can help you get it ordered and help you throughout  your entire 21 day journey!  


3.18.2015

A Re-Introduction

Isn't it crazy how life changes?  One day you start a blog as a hobby.  You are a newly-married resident of a small town who enjoys watching tv, day drinking and reading.  Flash forward a couple years and you are a mom, have stopped drinking, still enjoy reading and watching tv but now your tv is often showing workout programs while you sweat along in front of them, and you can often be found reading about health, wellness and nutrition.  Some of these may seem like minor changes, but in my life they have all been important!


 
Because it has been a couple years since I started this blog, I thought I would write up a new introduction to myself.  A peek at the girl behind the screen, if you will.
 
Here are the basics:  My name is Ashley, I'm still a couple years shy of the big 3-0, I live with my husband and our daughter in his hometown and I am also a Beachbody Coach.  I enjoy cooking, prefer baking, like to read and have a spot soft for anything sappy, cheesy, happy or whimsical (and Liam Neeson).  If I was given a free ride to grad school, I would have a hard time choosing between three programs: French, Tudor England History and Nutrition.  At the end of the day, I would likely go with nutrition (but French and Tudor England are still two of my favorite things to study, so if someone wants to pay for a Masters for me, can I get three?!)

 
When I started this blog, I wanted to use it as a place to share my day-to-day life; a place to express myself and to be used as an outlet for my thoughts.  Over time, the focus has shifted to include much more nutrition, fitness, and Beachbody.  Here's why.
 
When Jake and I first got married, I had a HUGE upheaval in my life.  It was great, and I was happy to make the changes, but it was still a lot to deal with.  I left my former job, found a new one, moved out of my parents' house (where I had lived my entire life with the exception of college) and moved to a new town.  Sure, I had spent a lot of time here already and luckily had a handful of good friends within the limits of town, but making that transition while also learning how to be a wife and how to co-habitate with my husband was a bit daunting.  A couple months after getting married, I realized that I was always tired.  I couldn't find the time or energy to even do household chores, and I found myself withdrawing from social situations.  I didn't want to deal with going out; I wanted to stay home and read, watch tv or do household chores (which I never got around to, so you can see how the cycle continued.)
 
Well, one night Jake and I wanted to watch something on Netflix, and I turned on a documentary called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. 
 
I think we each are only given a couple times in life we can look back on and say, "that is when everything changed."  For me, watching that documentary was when everything changed.  It got me interested in my health in a way that I never had been before: I was excited about improving it.  Since high school, the scale had been slowly working its way up (I'll blame too much alcohol and food without enough exercise for that).  

The past couple years have been the most incredible journey for me.  I have gone from an overweight, self-conscious newlywed to a much more fit, less self-conscious wife, and now a new mom jumping back on the fitness train after having thrown out my back shortly after having Bonnie Ann.  There's a lot more about the journey that I'd like to share, but I think I will leave it here for now.  

And next time?

I'll pick up where I left off - the after-effects of Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.


3.17.2015

21 Day Fix, Day 1

Last night I posted on Instagram about my first day trying out the 21 Day Fix, but shortly after posting I felt like there was more that I wanted to say.  So instead of typing everything out in several IG posts, I decided to commit an entire blog post to the topic.

21 Day Fix Day 1


 I have officially completed one day of the 21 Day Fix, and it feels incredible!  The past several months have been the most inactive months I have had over the last couple years, and I was itching to get back  into the swing of things.  It wasn't that I was choosing to be lazy, I was just dealing with some things that made being active quite difficult.  At the tail end of November I had my daughter, Bonnie Ann, and the couple weeks after were a circus of recovering, trying to function on no sleep, and trying to learn how to take care of an entire new human - it was exciting, nerve-wracking and so much more!  A bit over a month after having Bonnie, though, I laced up my sneakers and started working out again.  I was enjoying it, I felt great and I was happy - until one day (not even while working out!) I tweaked an old back injury and wound up not able to walk, and barely able to get off the couch.  But, finally, after a number of chiropractor appointments and grumbling about not feeling well, I finally am feeling like myself again!

I knew I wanted to get back to working out and eating well, but I also knew that in a lot of ways I was starting from scratch in a body that seems very different than the body I had pre-pregnancy.  I knew I wanted to learn more about nutrition, fueling my body, and making good, healthy food to help in my supply while breast-feeding,  so I decided to jump into the 21 Day Fix.

21 Day Fix Day 1

On Sunday night I set out my workout clothes, wrote up a meal plan, got the DVD ready to go in the DVD player and went to bed.  Bonnie Ann woke up at about 7 am, but after a quick feed she fell back asleep, so I laced up my shoes and did the workout!  Mondays in the 21 Day Fix (or Day 1, if you don't start on a Monday) are Total Body Cardio Fix.  What were my thoughts?  I'll make it simple:  my legs, even 20 hours after that workout, were still jello.  My shoulders felt the burn, my stomach feels tighter already and I feel stronger than I have in a long time.  In short, I loved it.  There were definitely moves for which I had to use the modifier, but there is NO shame in modifying a workout!  Was I sweating?  Yes!  Was I doing my best?  Yes!  If I can say that, then I have no problem modifying.  I know I will get stronger, more flexible and more used to the moves over the next 3 weeks, so I will be able to use fewer modifications as time goes on.  For now? I'm proud of myself for showing up and putting up!

21 Day Fix Lunch
By 9 o'clock I was done with my workout and ready to jump into the next portion of the 21 Day Fix:  nutrition.  This is something that makes this program so unique.  Not only does it have an entire workout program, it also lays out an incredible nutrition plan.  It took some planning and re-reading before I felt comfortable in making my first meal plan.  I am used to writing up Clean Eating plans; this used a s a lot of the same foods, it just approaches their consumption and rationing differently.

The 21 Day Fix comes with several food containers, and you fill these up and eat them throughout the day.  Depending on your current weight, you are allowed a certain number of each color of container each day.  The color each represent a different type of food, so the 21 Day Fix really lays out what you can eat each day and helps you craft a filling, healthy and easy meal plan.  What did I learn through Day 1?  You can eat a lOT of food, if it's the right kind of food.  I wrote out a meal plan on Sunday night based on what I already had in the house, and I was able to stick to 90% of it on Monday.  The only times I changed what I ate were when I realized I didn't in fact have tilapia in the house - instead of bringing Bonnie to the store, I went ahead with chicken breast instead.  Still good, still heathy, and still a red container - so it was a very minor change!

21 Day Fix Dinner
Day 1 of the 21 Day Fix was a big success for me - only 20 left to go!

Does this sound like a program you'd like to try?  I have a new challenge group starting in just 2 weeks and you are invited to join me!  Fill out the application form below and we can start on your 21 Day Fix journey!  If you are reading this post later than March 2015, you can fill out the application below and I can include you in my next group!












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3.02.2015

Weekly Pictures

Clearly this whole ‘full time mom, part time bank employee, part time Beachbody coach’ lifestyle I currently find myself in doesn’t leave a lot of time for me to blog.  But I can’t just walk away from this little spot on the inter-webs of mine – I really do love it too much!  So as I get acclimated to life with a much longer title than I’m used to, I will do my best to show up and share the things that are important.  Ultimately, I’m going to look back on these days with so much joy and I don’t want to forget them!

So here goes nothing :)

I want to write down Bonnie Ann’s birth story and memories from the last couple months, but for now I’m going to start with something simple – her life in weekly pictures!  Each week I have been putting her in a different outfit, on a sheet of fabric or a blanket and setting a plate next to her (kind of strange, perhaps, but it was free and it gets the job done!)  Then I go ahead and snap away!  Although I only use one for this project, I keep all of them – it’s fun to scroll through them.  It looks just like a flip book of her wiggling around! 

My goal is to take one picture each week for her first year.  I figure if I could take a weekly picture of my baby bump I should be able to stick to a weekly picture for my baby!

Here is little miss Bonnie Ann as she's grown!  I'll be adding to this as the weeks go by - I can't wait to see how she grows!

























2.10.2015

Greek Yogurt Parmesan Chicken

Well, once again the cobwebs have started taking over this blog space of mine.  As much as I love blogging and the community that comes along with it, ever since having Miss Bonnie Ann I have (obviously) found it incredibly difficult to stay current with blogging – both reading others and writing my own.  But I can get better – and I will!
So here I am with a recipe I tried last night and let’s just say it fit in perfectly to my definition of a perfect meal: easy, cheap, healthy and made with ingredients I already have.  As much as I’d love to always have elaborate meals planned and executed, I rarely do.  So easy and healthy are my simple requirements (and, of course, we have to like what we’re eating!)
Greek Yogurt Chicken

The other day before I went to the grocery store I was checking out my fridge and cupboards to take stock of what I had and what I needed to buy.  When I looked in the door I saw the Greek Yogurt that I had bought and for some reason put in the door (and which I quickly forgot about every buying since I never put the Greek Yogurt in the door).  Luckily it wasn’t at its expiration date, but it was getting close.  So what did I do?  Decided to make dinner with it!  A while ago I made Greek Apple Tunafish Sandwiches, but Jake is not a fan of tuna so I knew I had to come up with something else.  Pinterest to the rescue!
Here’s what I came up with – I promise that the picture doesn’t do it justice – it was tasty, super quick and simple and I didn’t have to buy anything special for it!
Win-win-win (and the wins continue!)  This is a super creamy and tastefully rich chicken dish without being loaded with butter or cream – and if you or someone in your family has a gluten allergy or sensitivity it’s perfect!

Healthy Parmesan Chicken

Note: Be sure to use a casserole or other dish with raised sides.  Putting the chicken on just a baking sheet would end in a huge mess!  The topping melts and when you dish it up, the chicken is sitting in a large amount of liquid - if you used just a cookie sheet this liquid would be loose in your oven - so not a good thing!

Does this sound like something you'd like to try?  I'd love to hear your opinion if you do!