Squeaky CLEAN: A Foodie's Fitness Adventure

****WARNING**** This is probably THE longest post I'll ever make you suffer through on here...but if you're up for reading my first novel {lol}...grab some celery sticks, lounge with some lemon water and read about a little DEE-toxing. 

{The Goal}

I had been wanting to do a "fitness" review post for quite some time...but couldn't really figure out how! That "F" word is totes foreign territory to me. Let's be honest, CoCo-Nuts...if I could post a recipe on here for Butter Casserole...without raising any eyebrows...ya'll know I would! {Oink.} I don't see in size...and I don't agree with "dieting"...so healthy has just never been my thang. It's sad, I know. But! It's never too late to teach an old Dee new tricks. I had been searching for a diamond in the rough to become a little gem I could add to my Dee-tales files. Maybe change my attitude, ya know? Well!...Meet the 21 Day Fix! My crown jewel.

See what I did there with the whole Dee thing? {#Dork}

Basically, you prep your meals in cutely colored containers for 21 days and workouts are your dessert. Your rock star of a coach acts as the maitre'd and your online teammates split the tip!

Here's a little story on this tiny treasure...

{The Start}

It began on March 22, 2015: Beast Mode.


I took on the 21-Day Fix {from Beach Body} and I lived to tell the tale! Ya'll know how I love to share a product review, so I thought there would be no way to fully endorse this gift from above unless I actually jumped on the portion-control bandwagon and gave it my all.

Game face was on.

{The Discovery}

In early March 2015, I saw a dear friend {A} post about her experience with this program.

It popped up out of no where. NO WHERE, kids!!! She didn't document her journey in daily posts, meal pics, hashtags or Instagram pics. She just announced her success after the fact. {Brilliant!} This element of surprise...took me by surprise! I dug it. {A} had lived in a cool secret world for 3 weeks and had this special little something going on...and it was all her own. She wasn't trying to prove anything to anyone...except herself. {Dang, that's neat.}

In the world of social media, I'm admittedly an open book....to a certain degree. {I'm sort of a huge contradiction though, because I'm extremely private when it comes down to it. Extreeeeemely.}  On my personal page, the Twinados take top bidding. My camera has some serious miles on it, yo. But...I can't help myself. You see, a good portion of the hubs' side of the fam is spread throughout the Midwest. My fam is centrally located around my neck of the woods...where I grew up. The rest of our families are sprinkled all over the states...and a handful of mine are over in Italy and France. {Ciao, bellas!} So, basically, posting our daily happenings makes us feel more connected to them. Keeping in contact with our friends is also a joy. Can't really put a price on being able to congratulate a sorority sis on her new baby, post inappropriate jokes to your besties' pages or send an electronic hug to a former student and her new groom, etc. {A whole lotta lovey doveyness going on here as usual, people!}

My point is that it's easy to get caught up in the attraction of social media. But, for once, I saw someone stray from the norm, do something incredibly fab and cause me to stop right in my tracks. This gal, {A}, is one in a gazillion. She has a heart of gold, an enthusiasm that's beyond compare and a personality that's BIGGER than life. She's that feel-good friend; a natural born "cheer" leader who always has a 1,000-watt smile on her face {always sending positive vibes to anyone in her tribe}. I swear she's a human Care Bear. Her kind words and genuine happy spirit have always motivated me to be a better person. She is also highly intelligent. I trust her judgement 110%. No, wait. Make that 510%! I'm not kidding. She researches. She questions. She does her homework. She could tell me the sky is pink, and I'd probably agree! {Do you have this kind of friend?}

Back to the 21 Day Fix - not only did {A} have success in 21 days, she ended up becoming a coach! For her to make that leap - spoke volumes to my soul!

{The Commitment}

Let's remember some facts about moi: Your homegirl doesn't diet. {Well, unless you count blueberry muffins because they have fruit in them.}Your home girl doesn't exercise. {Well, unless you count my mad sprinting skills at Target on Black Friday.} Your home girl doesn't miss a meal. {Well, unless you count the midnight buffet on a cruise ship. Mama be sleepin'.}

Those last three sentences aren't exactly something to be proud of...so when I saw my amazing friend {A} stand behind the mission of this company, I knew it was time to put down the bag of family size potato chips...say peace out to the pasta... and commit to be {sort of} fit once and for all.

The kicker? The hubs was all in. Immediately. When he heard {A} supported this program, I saw my penny pinching {ahem} money-wise muchacho  point me right toward the log-in screen without 1 shred of hesitation. {For those that know the hubs...you know this is HUGE! Bigger than the planets! And, this gives you an indication of how great of an impact this gal has had on our lives.}

I texted her.

She instantly replied.

I busted out the credit card the next morning.

My box of rainbow colored plastic squares arrived a few days later. A free Shakeology cup was nestled nicely inside. {I passed on the shakes this time...because I'm more of a food cruncher...but maybe someday I'll hop on board.} It was time to get down to bidness...check out the workout DVDs...study the food charts...and focus.

{A} created a Facebook Accountability Group. Perfect! A handful of other brave souls would be doing this at the same time as me. Things were starting to get REAL.

{The Last Supper}

The night before the big plunge, the hubs and I went out to dinner with 2 of our nearest and dearest friends. We called it the "Last Supper," and we kicked tooshes and took names. We chowed down somethin' fierce!! Our bellies were FULL. I even managed to get a little pre-first-work out in...due to the great laughs we share with these two. {The jokes just always hug me right around my abs.}

Lord, have mercy.

{The Dark Side}

After dinner, we hit the grocery store for some meal supplies. I've only been to the Organic section...a.k.a."The Dark Side"...if my two chicklets spot Boom Chicka Pop Pop out of the corner of their eye, if I need to get around a slow poke shopper or if I'm talking to CoCo on the phone and I wander over there aimlessly. This was truly new territory for me. {Pronouncing "QUINOA" was too.}

Quinn - ohhh - uh?
Quinn - oh - A?
Quee - no - uh?

Keen - oh - WHAT?!

I'm not fibbin' when I say I had to do a double take when looking for my cart sometimes. On the way to the checkout, I swear the potato chip aisle flipped me the bird as I walked by...a pack of Oreos called me a jerk...and I'm quite certain the ice cream freezer shouted BRUTUS right at my face.

But, alas! Here's what jumped into our cart...

Those nanners are lookin' pretty fly.

I'll admit, loves...I was pleasantly surprised at all of the yummy choices that are suggested on the menu, because in my rude, snobby, foodie mind...I was originally scared. I also stereotyped. {So rude.} I thought I'd just be allowed to eat bowls of leaves and platters of tree bark. What the feezie is flax seed? Oy. And, Ezekiel bread? {Wasn't that the first name of one of the creepers from Children of the Corn?} Stop it.

I'm so glad I cut the 'tude and just took this first step.

{The Rules}

After I tucked away the new healthy honeys in my fridge, I gave my checklist another glance. I was so anxious to start!

1. You take a quiz to determine how many calories are perfect for you each day.

2. The results will tell you exactly how many of each colored container you can eat in a day.

3. Each colored container coincides with a food.

4. You can pack these suckers FULL.

5. It is suggested to not eat fruits or carbs past 6 p.m.

6. You can add Shakeology to your plan and substitute a shake for a meal.

7. 2 workout DVDs accompany this plan. You can choose any workout that floats your boat each day. It's all up to YOU!

8. For 15 days you work out once a day. The rest...you double down!

9. There is a gal in the videos who does the modified workout while the rest rock and roll. #Kat

10. If you are in an Accountability Group, you check in with your coach and "teammates" every day.

{The Dailies}

Day 1...When I woke up on "Game Day," I was pretty excited to start meal prepping. {Peeps told me this was KEY in pressing that personal reset button.} A few hours later, I still held the same enthusiasm. I felt accomplished...and tried my first meal.

Plate: Was I kidnapped?

A banana w/ peanut butter was up next for a snack, and lunch was huge. Sriracha glazed salmon with a balsamic salad to the left.

Salad: It's o-FISH-al...she's losing her mind.

Afternoon snack was adorbs.

Strawberry: Psst! I think she's going...nuts.

Dinner did not disappoint! Tried Quinoa Noodles for the very first time. {Note to all: they store super well in the fridge and don't stick together like other pastas. Give 'em a spritz of coconut oil spray ahead of time just for kicks.}

Holla for Marsala!

Oh, Pamela.

Final snack was a nice little night-cap of cottage cheese. I popped in the cardio DVD at night and officially met the 21 Day Fix founder, Autumn Calabrese {a firecracker of fun!}, and the Twinados joined me. They were very kind trainers. I think it was because it was my first day. Pretty sure their Jillian Michaels and Bella Carolli sides will take over tomorrow.

Day 2... I woke up feeling REFRESHED! {Holy shnikees!! What is happening?!!} I stepped on the scale and went down 1 pound. What the what? It was a Monday morning, and I prepped for work the night before. Egg cups were up first for breakfast. I'm a total Desktop Snacker - pretzels, party mix, chips, cookies, gummy bears {HARIBO-only}, etc. I have a SNACK DRAWER! To reach for a banana and peanut butter...and later for a handful of almonds was "nuts" I tell ya. {womp womp} Taco Salad awaited me for lunch. I made the Creamy Herb Dressing to top off the masterpiece and takeover for my beloved Daisy our cream. BOOM. {I even had a few bites left over!} Have to admit...the later part of the afternoon kind of dragged, but I busted on through because a Chicken Stir-Fry din din loomed in the distance. Tonight's workout consisted of Upper Body. {Thank God Autumn took it down a teensy weensy notch.}

P.F. Chang's CHANGE!

Day 3...The scale was down a few more tick marks! Insane! I put my contacts in. 20/20 vision, ya'll. {Progress!} I'm looking to shed some pounds, sure, but I'm really actually looking to tone up and feel like a ray of sunshine. So, onward, we go!

Day 4...Today went well. When I drop the gals off to school, I normally race around running errands {this includes getting happily lost in a Tar-zhay Time Warp}. I brought a freaking SALAD to eat during stops. A salad! My Explorer made a scrunch face. I told her to lose the 'tude! We went to my sweetie Goddaughter's school musical tonight and her Nana {a Saint on Earth} brought a YUMMY spread of goodies for all the kiddos. I lived vicariously through their happy little faces. A cherry Airhead stared me right in the grill. Do I? Don't I? Do I? Don't I? I thought of my teammates, shoved it in my pocket and will soon use it as a treat. {Only human, right?}

Day 5...It's an all-day in the office day. Tried a breakfast burrito! A recipe from teammate {BK}. I love that the Accountability Group cheers each other on through quotes, check-ins and food pics. I am finding myself checking our Facebook group page a ton throughout the day. I don't want to miss a thing! {I forgot the salsa this time...but next time, things are gonna get muy caliente!}

Hola, bonita!

Day 6...Another full work day...during LENT none-the-less. An avocado salad was top dog today. Ohhh, that lemony-lime buttery goodness! I arrived home and saw a BLUE APRON meal box waiting at my doorstep...along with our best guy friend from College. {He happens to be one kick ass Godfather to two twin girls we know.} He drove all the way from Michigan to watch some NCAA March Madness games with The Hubs. I'm thrilled he's here. Over the moon! He's truly a brother to us and any chance we get to see him is a blessing. I'd normally have a pizza and potato chip spread waiting for him, but Crunchmaster crackers and hummus were as far as I'd go in snack land! Props to teammate {AZ} for the heads up on these yummies.

(L-R) Crispy and Crunchy.

Day 7...The first Saturday awaits! Went to my Multiple Moms club's Annual Spring Sale...and I took a banana and a water for a snack. Writing that last sentence is so beyond surreal, I can't even handle it! Normally, I'd take a bagel with cheese and fruit juice...oh, and for the ride home, Doritos would be riding shotgun with some Haribo gummies for dessert. {Oh, Dee.} Hummus chicken was on the menu for lunch though. INSANE. I love how this clean eating/fitness plan teaches me something new each day. Recipes keep getting better and better. I smothered the tops of chicken breasts with dollops of roasted garlic hummus for lunch. The results? Perfect protein!

Oh...and for a late afternoon snackeroonie? I will let the pic do the tawkin! I blended frozen strawberries, lemon juice, plain Greek yogurt, a sprinkle of coconut and a swirl of raw honey to make this pretty-in-pink sweetheart.

And, last night, teammate {JM} talked about pizza. I remembered I saved a few Cauliflower Crust Pizza recipes on Pinterest, so I fused them together to make this little sassy pants for dinner.

Day 8...ONE WEEK, baby!!! Down 8 lbs...the twin tum is starting to pack her bags...and the Twinados were my workout buddies again this morning. Lunch was Sriracha Garlic Shrimp and Quinoa Noodles.

Who you callin, shrimp?

I was blessed to have been offered the opportunity to partner with Blue Apron for a meal review, so dinner was a super cool experience. Click Here to read!

Day 9...Short day at the office. Managed to bring some scrambled eggs to work and sneak in an almond snack before heading home. Went to the grocery store while the gals were in school and it wasn't as expensive as our first trip! We're finding out which foods to buy...and when. Portobellos jumped into my cart and I was so glad they were along for the ride. Turned them into PIZZA tonight! Some oven-roasted zucchini hopped in for a selfie.

Mama Mia!

Day 10...Cantaloupe showed her face in the kitchen today! Forgot about how much I love her! Tried Italian chicken sausage for din din. 1 link = 100 calories/3g of fat/2g of carbs. Unbelievable. I added Nathan's mustard to pair with it, so today gets an A+ for sure.

Don't be chicken, you guys! 

Day 11...It was April Fool's Day today...but my scale wasn't laughing. Down a few more pounds! Teammate {DH} provided us with a chuckle on the boards today.

Day 12...The in-laws will arrive tomorrow. Did a bunch of cleaning around the casa. {Extra workout, right?!}

Day 13...The in-laws are here! But...snacks weren't. I felt so bad! My MIL joined me for a salad party for dinner. As I watched The Hubs and my FIL down some gorgeously garlic infused pizza and weeeeally wonderful wings, I looked down at my Sriracha Salmon and thought...not today, gluten. Not today.

Day 14...The girls' school hosted an Easter Egg Hunt this morning. As I saw their little faces light up when they scored a piece of chocolate, I fondly remembered the days when I'd bargain with them to give me a bite. The MIL ate clean with me the whole day! Grapefruit! Carrots! Taco Salad! She stayed with me every step of the way. We all went to the circus that night, and aside from dodging clowns {shudder}...I managed to steer clear of calories.

Day 15...Happy Easter! Teammate {DS} shared her progress with us. She is kickin' it! Teammate {DK} posted an angel food cake pic that floated down from Heaven. {Going to have to steal that recipe!} I can't stress it enough - these wonderful individuals have become friends, and a happy day for them, means a happy day for me. Sort of a surreal feeling to have instantly bonded with them. Can't really explain it!

The fam and I went to brunch. I sat near Grandma Kay Kay, and she was monitoring my plate. Judging. Wondering why I passed on penne vodka. That Einstein knows something's up. I told her I was just craving some veggies today. A prompt...mmm hmm, stare, and a tiny little Northern Italian hand floating slowly to her chin followed. I changed the subject, but I know I haven't seen the last of her investigation.

Day 16...Full day in the office...and full lunch pail, as well! I am using a Thirty One COOLER to bring all of my supplies. {Omg!} I stocked up the pantry for the in-laws so they'd have something to munch on while we were gone. Chicken sausage and sweet potato fries were on the dinner menu.


Day 17...The MIL joined me for a work event - a promotional product conference at a major hotel here in my area. There was a seriously sweet lunch provided by the hosts. Breads/lunchmeat/salad/pasta salad/CHIPS/cookies/brownies...and PINK LEMONADE. {Ohhhh you dang siren. Stop looking at me. This instant!} I marched on over to the plates and packed mine with cucumbers, a salad...and a ham + mustard roll-up. Dinner called for Crock Pot Fajitas. I've posted this recipe on the blog before, and I realized I could still have it if I made a few tweaks. I put the mixture in a wheat wrap, and had a spoonful just by itself on the side, as well. Some of my teammates also make this recipe. {Oh hey there BF, TE and JM!!} Click here for the recipe!

Day 18...It was a rainy day. Super cold. Normally, I'd get all cozy with a grilled cheese and tomato soup w/ parm cheese. I'd eat some strawberry Sour Punch straws and sip on some Cherry Coke while the sammie was cooking. I'd set out some chewy Chips Ahoy and a Real Housewives of {wherever} episode to finish off the lunch time party. {Scrap that!} Salad hit the spot and some hummus + Crunchmaster sea salt crackers joined me at the table. #MovingMountainsPeople!!!

Day 19...Long work day in the office. The finish line is almost here!!!!! No need to celebrate with food. That seems so strange for me to say that. {The Heluva Good dip + Wavy Lay's chips will have to wait a little longer.} Sheesh watched the gals today, and I left her some Crunchmaster crackers and Quinoa snack bars from the Easter Bunny. If she saw these a few weeks ago, she'd probably take my temperature, but nowadays, the only thing she's taking is control. She's doing her own fitness thing right now, and I am slowly luring her to The Dark Side. SHE actually discovered those Quinoa snack bars, so that's why I happily set them out for her. #GitItGirl

Day 20...T.G.I.F.!!!! Tonight we went to UNO's with our good friends and their sweet daughter. T-1 tried to share a bite of make-your-own pizza with me {what a little dollbabe!}, but I stayed focused on some Herb Crusted Chicken. With a side of broccoli. {Seriously...my keyboard keeps wanting to autocorrect this nonsense!}

Day 21...Well, hello there, sunshine!! How did you sneak up on me like that? 21 days already? Boom Biddy Boom. Dunzo! Started the morning off with a pep talk from my lovely {Jenny-Jen} who has been a key motivator since Day 1...a little Zumba sesh with my lovely {Kell-Belle}... and had a check-in and chat fest with my lovely {KK}.

{The Stats}

I lost a total of 13 pounds...and gained one hell of a lesson. I'm far from Gisele, but it's not about that. {Well...maybe if you stand 3 counties away from me at night and squint in the pouring rain...we could totally pass as sisters. HA!} Quite simply, I feel like a million bucks.

{The Re-Cap}

1. DO THIS. Enough said.

2. Find a coach who is a genuine angel and listen to that sweet soul's encouragement, tips and tricks.

3. Get attached to your Accountability Group teammates. I did!

4. Meal prep and recipe searches were FUN!

5. Drink water. LOTS of it. Infuse it with fruit. Real fruit.

6. Tracking your meals for the day on an Excel spreadsheet might sound silly...but it's not.

7. Invest in coconut oil.

8. Eat when you're supposed to...even if you're not up for it. It will keep your metabolism rockin'

9. The Shakeology program sounds intriguing. #BucketList

10. This program isn't about the scale. It's 100% about how you feel.

11. Don't deny your cravings...just learn how to incorporate them into your meal plan.

12. Moderation is the motto! {You're dang right, I snuck some Rolos!}

13. Do the workouts. Switch 'em up! I skipped a day...and I could feel it. Stay focused, honey.

14. Don't be afraid of hummus.

15. Never underestimate the power of 2 teaspoons of peanut butter!

16. You will NOT go hungry on this fitness plan. I repeat...you will N-O-T be a starvin' Marvin, but rather a Fuller-than-Full Fred.

17. Measure + photograph your progress. Work it, sugar!

18. You can do anything in 60 seconds.

19. Buy a yoga mat.

20. Buy some fun workout clothes.

21. Buy this program.

{Thanks, Coach}

In typical CD-Blog fashion, like I always say...I'm not a Beach Body coach...but, I know a beauty that IS! Get a hold of Coach {A} and add a lil color to your day! Click here for deets!

Also - have a little look-see at the blog Buckeye By Design, created by my friend and fellow twin mommy,{C}. She's also a coach and a 21 Day Fix "graduate!" I sure am lucky to have such inspiring friends. Click here to follow {C} and her fitness journey.

{Final Thought}

Now, let's just remember this was a TRIAL run for me, originally. Never in a million trillion Godzillion years did I think this would be a total game life changer. Nope. I was the biggest exercise procrastinator on God's green Earth. {I sat on it enough to know!!!}

Let's face it though... food is my passion. Indulging is in my genes. Sour cream is freaking delish. But, ya know what? Portions are perfect! So I'm planning to keep that little nugget 'o wisdom with me from now on. I'm not a health-nut...no way, doll. So, no change up here on the blog or anything. I just wanted to let you know that as much as I encourage you to try the hearty recipes I find, I'm also urging you to keep THIS post in the backs of your minds.

I'm adding a new section to the blog...{DEE-tox}...a healthy hub where "light" is right! This goodie will hopefully provide a proper balance to the blog. I'm also going to be adding a tiny shot of healthy to the Pinterest page. I hope you'll stay tuned/ help me add to these newbies.

With that said...I'm also coining a new term...{#FITFOODIE}. Who's with me? Let's find a way to have our cake...and eat it too!

Food/Fit Fusion? Hi, My name is Dee...and I'll leave you with this...

No comments:

Post a Comment