Phase 2, Day 33: Booty (aka Never Miss a Monday)

It’s not that I didn’t want to workout today. It’s moreso that my body is still in vacation mode, and taking a day off, like TRULY taking a day off from life and work and eating right, sounded right up my alley.

Truth be told, that probably would have happened had I not happened to check Autumn’s Instagram while lying in bed this morning. “Never miss a Monday,” she posted. Even though today didn’t feel like a Monday, even though I was still in the holiday zone, I rolled out of bed, ate my pre-workout meal, and got my ass to the gym.

It wasn’t pretty, but I got it done.

Booty. Boo-TAY. An almost hour-long workout this week doing the rep scheme I hate: Three sets of 10 reps, but where you go through the entire workout three times, doing each exercise for 10 reps. I hate it because it takes forever. The workouts don’t change, but that doesn’t make them easy.

Also, I can’t remember if I stressed this last week, but I do have a pro-tip for the Quad-Ped series.

PRO-TIP #44: LIGHTEN UP.

It is very easy to do the quad ped exercises (heel press up on the angle, single-leg hamstring curl, and bear fire hydrant) WRONG. Why? Because if you let your knee drop when you fully extend your leg, you’re taking the movement out of your butt and into your quad.

As Autumn points out with a cast member, if you can’t keep your knee UP during these moves, you might have to lighten up on the resistance loop. That cast member, Jazmyne, is RIPPED. Seriously, she started 80 Day Obsession already shredded, yet somehow managed to carve her abs and triceps out even more over the course of the program. And, her ass is #buttgoals.

But despite her pre-conditioning, she struggled with the quad ped series because of her tight hip flexors. As a result, she eventually ended up not using a band at ALL for the heel press up on the angle and single-leg hamstring curl because she could not do either without keeping her knee up. What was most important was her form, and given how her body was wired, she could not keep perfect form and work the muscle that needed to be worked: Her glutes.

I am sharing this because if you are anything like me, you will be frustrated with the quad ped series. I alternate between wanting to challenge myself with a heavier resistance loop, and watching my form. My problem is that my back tends to arch, which means I feel it more in my lower back than in my butt. Case in point:

Heel Press Up on Angle
WAYYYY too much lower back action here.

You can see I put on a blue loop for this exercise. After I snapped this photo, for the next round, I swapped out the blue for the green and managed to tuck my tailbone and lose the arch.

My point being that this week will press some buttons. The rep scheme will feel wrong, you might not increase the weight as much as you like, and all of it tends to come to a head in a cloud of frustration that makes it hard to be motivated to workout. Honestly, the only thing that got me through today was Autumn’s mantra, which I HAPPENED to stumble across: “Never Miss a Monday.” That was the only thing that kept me going.

I knew that after the celebratory, holiday weekend I enjoyed in San Diego, I was in need of a good workout to get keyed back in to the 80 Day Obsession plan. AND, I knew that if I worked out, I would be more likely to get back on the timed nutrition trian.

For the most part, my morning workout set me on the path of eating right….Except for the fact that dinner at my Aunt’s house was moved to tonight. AND WHO CAN SAY NO TO HOMEMADE STRAWBERRY PIE. IT’S JUST RUDE.

However, I only had one slice. And I swapped out my hamburger bun for some bibb lettuce and only had one helping of everything, even though I desperately wanted a second half ear of corn. I’m typing this now feeling full, but not obscenely so – a marked change from what I usually experience most nights after family dinner. So, I suppose I will take it as a win and use the rest of the week to get back on the straight and narrow. But I am NOT going to punish myself and use my less-than-perfect day as an excuse to throw the rest of the meal plans out for the week and eat garbage instead. No. I’ll just eat better tomorrow than I did today. Progress not perfection. That’s all I can do.

At the very least, I got my Monday workout in. I pushed play and have now set the tone for the rest of the week. And that tone says I WILL work out according to schedule.

All because I didn’t miss a Monday.

So, don’t miss a Monday. For most of you, it’s not too late. But, if you’re really struggling, hit me up. I might be able to help. Or, check out the usual link for ways the Beachbody shenanigans could help you.

After all, even if you miss a Monday, it doesn’t mean you have to miss the next.

 

Phase 2, Day 32: Cardio Flow (aka Not My Favorite)

I have nothing to write about today’s workout. You do six reps of each move. It’s a slog.

But you can finish this workout because you’ve done four reps of each move before, so how hard is it to add another two reps?

With that out of the way, rather than recap my pathetic attempts at donkey/mules, I’d prefer to talk about something you probably have a lot of questions about: Refeed Day.

This next week, on Wednesday, Day 35, you will have your first Refeed Day. What, pray tell, is a Refeed Day? It’s when Autumn allows you to eat “Dirty Yellows” at different intervals throughout the day.

What is a “dirty yellow”? There’s a list included with the 80 Day Obsession program, and those dirty yellows consist of carbohydrates that contain more sugar than what we are usually allowed. For example, the dirty yellow could be fix-approved brownies, fix-approved donut holes, white bread, etc. The idea is that you are replenishing the glycogen in your system because it will have been at a deficit for the past few weeks; when you body gets that extra sugar/glycogen, it should translate to you feeling stronger and having a better workout and perhaps giving your metabolism an extra boost. When a cast member asked Autumn if he should do the refeed days because he only wanted to “maintain” and not lean out, Autumn’s response was yes, that he should participate in the refeed days so he could see how it would affect his body.

I didn’t like Refeed Days, and I struggled with them the entire program. My Achilles Heel was the spoon.

To explain: Autumn has a fix-approved recipe for flourless chocolate brownies which are AMAZING, and she and bro Bobby also came up with these delicious fix-approved donut holes. After over a month of no baked goods, the Sunday before my first Refeed Day in Round 1, I decided to treat myself and make BOTH the brownies and the donut holes. I did it on Sunday because I knew I wouldn’t have time to bake during the week, so I figured I might as well get it all done at once.

The problem with baking these treats at home is that inevitably, I HAVE to lick the spoon. You know, when you’re dumping the batter into the cake pan and/or into muffin tins and you may “accidentally” leave a little more than a spoonful stuck to the sides of the bowl so you have an excuse to clean up the mess with a good spatula and then your finger? Then, after the rigorous bowl-cleaning, after you pull everything out of the oven, well you HAVE to taste-test your goods! Otherwise, what if you get to the glorious Refeed Day and the first shot of chocolate you’ve enjoyed in over 30 days tastes like ass because it turns out you forgot to rinse the strainer before using it to drain the chickpeas for the brownies which means the brownies have taken on the taste of the artichoke hearts which were in the strainer before the chickpeas.

My point is that I would usually end up having TWO Refeed Days during Refeed Week: One on Sunday when I would invariably succumb to my own baking, and then on the actual Refeed Day when I was SUPPOSED to enjoy my own baking. As a result, I felt terrible during Refeed week. My system had a hard time adjusting to the added sugar and it really felt like I took a step back both in terms of my nutrition and my appearance. I never got the hang of finding the balance with Refeed Days.

Now I know what you’re thinking: “Katie, instead of trying to avoid the temptation of your home kitchen, just buy your Dirty Yellows at the store and call it a day.”

So, I tried that. For one Refeed Day, I decided to treat myself to a delicious donut from Top Pot as two of my Dirty Yellows (yes you get two at once for one of your meals).

I literally blacked out and ate three donuts before I knew what was happening.

The leash on my self-control is tenuous at best. I keep trying to find a way around it being all or nothing, but to date, all or nothing seems to be the only course of action that actually WORKS for me. When I try to improvise with a Samoa donut from Top Pot, my mind seems to take that as a signal for a free-for-all and suddenly it’s all I can do to not eat my body weight in processed fat and sugar.

Even though I would end up having two Refeed Days, I had greater success making my dirty yellows at home: After I taste-tested a few and confirmed they weren’t terrible, I would portion out what I needed for Wednesday and then take the rest over to my Aunt’s house for Sunday dinner. That way, I didn’t have extra lying around the house. Even better, while I consistently over-ate the dirty yellows when making them, at least, by following fix-approved recipes, I could ensure I wasn’t putting the worst crap possible in my body; it was just crap.

I share this post because I want you to know that Refeed Days are difficult; they feel fun at first, but for me, they were a pain in the ass. If you find something that works for you, great. But if you are like me and know this day is going to present a problem for you, here’s a few tips to help get you through the day:

#1: Have a Plan.

You need to know on Sunday what your Dirty Yellows are going to be. Are you going to buy them at the store? Treat yourself to an extra piece of white bread at lunch? Make fix-approved brownies at home? Just like with every other aspect of the timed nutrition, you need to plan this out. You need to know what you are going to eat to refeed yourself BEFORE dawn breaks on Refeed Day. If you don’t have a plan, that is a recipe for disaster, as the only thing that will fill the gap are terrible processed foods that are easy to grab and terrible for your overall results.

#2: Use the Fixate Recipes.

If you’re not like me and don’t have a problem with licking the spoon, then absolutely make a fix-approved dirty yellows from the comfort of your own home. There is no better way to guarantee that you are then putting into your body exactly what is recommended because you know what is in the food you are consuming. After all, you made it!

#3: Get the Extras Out of Your House.

If you are taking 80 Day Obsession seriously, then one of the first things you would have done before starting the program is cleared all the junk food and crap food out of your house.

With Refeed Day, however, it can feel like you suddenly have free rein to buy that crap food and put it back in your house. Don’t fall into this trap. First, don’t buy the food. BUT, if you do end up buying the food, then immediately portion out what you need and get rid of the rest.

I always did this with the fix-approved dirty yellows I would make on Sunday: I would set aside what I needed for Wednesday and package up the rest for family dinner. HOWEVER, there was one day where family dinner was cancelled, and so there was nowhere to take the leftovers on Sunday. Uh Oh.

Somehow, the brownies I did NOT need to eat ended up disappearing Sunday night. I kept seeing them and nibbling at them for “just a taste” and before I knew it they were gone. Not my proudest moment, but at least I know now I simply can’t have it in the house. Weirdly enough, there is a difference between portioning out brownies and setting them aside for a certain day, versus leaving the brownies in the pan for the week; the former causes me to stick to and follow the meal plan; the latter destroys any self-control I have and inevitably leads to a free-for-all.

#4: Don’t Be Afraid to Change It Up.

What I mean by this is that everyone is different, and everyone will react differently to Refeed Day. You’re going to have to pay attention to your body to figure out how to get the most out of this day. I felt like shit after most Refeed Days because I used all my Dirty Yellows as an excuse to have processed sugar.

There was one Refeed Day where I didn’t have time to make anything or buy anything, so I ended up having extra slices of Ezekiel’s bread and extra helpings of sweet potato. Surprise surprise, that Refeed Day, I felt the BEST I did all program. Unfortunately, that day came at the very end, so I have yet to see if it can be repeated. That I will find out this week.

I’m still learning this stuff, just like you. I’m still doing trial and error. You will too. Don’t let the learning part be used as an excuse to stray from the program; don’t lean more towards the “error” than the trial because it’s easier to throw in the towel than fix what’s broken.

Above all, if you have questions while going through this, ASK. It doesn’t have to be me, but feel free to drop me an email or a comment. I guarantee you won’t be the first one to wonder if you’re doing Refeed Day right or if there are ways you could be doing it better.

As always, feel free to click on the link to learn more about Beachbody stuff.

Tomorrow’s my day off from the blog, so good luck getting ready for Refeed Day, and again, let me know if you have any questions!