Wednesday, July 20, 2016

QUICK-ish little recap of my second go at the 21 Day Fix Extreme.

(Day 1, 21, and 42 of two back-to-back rounds. Not to be confused with the very first day I started any of this. That's to come..)

I started writing this and quickly realized I'm not sure I have that much to say actually, haha. Probably because I "mini-blog" so much on Instagram now, I feel like I've talked enough about it. (PS: mini-blogging is a real thing. I read about it. Apparently that's where blogging is going when it dies. Because apparently it's dying?) BUT, I think it's important to take a few minutes to write about my experience, for myself if anything. This was my second "go" around at the Extreme, but my first SUCCESSFUL round. My first attempt was right before/during our move and I quit at day 19...SO,  first of all I gotta give myself a little high-five and celebrate that I fricking DID IT because after that first attempt, I was actually really scared to try again. But glad I did!

By now EVERYONE knows that I love the 21 Day Fix. (I know. EVERYONE KNOWS.) I wouldn't have done it so many times had I not loved it. NOR would I have joined as a coach to share it with others. And I definitely wouldn't have started down this new path (OR stayed on it) if not for it. It was my beginning, taught me everything I know so far, and was the best introduction to everything fitness. But ever hear that saying, "if you're not're not getting any better?" (That might just be a made up Pinterest quote, but it's true.) I had done it enough times that other than cardio (which will never come easy to me), I wasn't really too challenged by it anymore. I wasn't getting that "feeling" before my workout where I'm somewhat terrified about what I'm about to get myself into, haha. And I think that's important! Honestly! I know it sounds crazy, but I think that feeling is a good thing because once the workout's done you're like, "WOW I AM A GODDESS." And THAT feels awesome. That's a big part of the reason I love these programs,  they push me to do things I'd ever push MYSELF to do, on my own. I don't think there's anything wrong with going to the gym, but when I used to go the gym...personally, I'd never push myself. I'd never give myself that terrified feeling. I'd just get bored and go home, lol. So this is sort of like having a personal trainer who pushes you out of your comfort zone and knows HOW to get work done! (Except it's cheaper, and I don't actually have to meet someone face to face, haha. VERY important if you're anything like me!) 

So first attempt didn't go so well. It was after two back-to-back rounds of the original 21 Day Fix so physically I should have been ready for it, but mentally I wasn't "all in." We had just decided we were going to quit our Carolina life and move back to Texas, so there was a lot of stress with everything that came with that, obviously. The day I started was actually the day John flew to Dallas for his initial interviews, and then everything happened REAL fast from there. I know, excuses, excuses. But sometimes excuses are legit! (SOMETIMES!) Big life changes do not help for keeping a stable mindset! I cried a lot that first round because when I couldn't keep up, or do some of the moves, I'd fall apart because my mind was just already in "fall apart" mode over everything else that was going on. So from the start I was only halfway in. (Which I never would have admitted, but can now see that I was.) Never underestimate the power of your mindset! It'll make or break you!

I did much better this time, and I chalk that ALL up to being in a better place. But I also realized that I would never be able to keep up, or do all the moves perfectly and I decided that I had to be okay with that. I think with a program like might sort of be the point. Unless your name is Autumn Calabrese (the trainer lol) you're probably not going to being able to do everything. You just have to be willing to TRY.  There are a lot of times in the videos when even the cast is stopping for a break or modifying halfway through. Once I realized that, I was like, "okay Morgan settle down a notch, you're good." I'd definitely say it's not for...normal people, haha. In all honesty the first time I did it I was thinking, "there's no way I can suggest this to people!" But I totally would now because you don't have to be perfect. It's not about that. It's about challenging yourself to do hard things, and just trying YOUR BEST. And even without being able to do it all, I still think I got good results! I probably got more from this than I with with two rounds of the original fix. (IF you put in the work! Which I did this time...unlike the last time I did it.)

Ok, I said this would be "quick-ish" so I better get to the pictures now and stop rambling on and on with the boring stuff. So here's the before/after, three weeks apart...

Not a huge noticeable difference, but Rome wasn't built in a day. AM I RIGHT? And I honestly hate pictures because sometimes I feel like they don't do any justice because they don't capture real life movement or something? I can see my muscles so much more looking in the mirror than in a picture. (And Johns standing a foot taller than me, so these are always a little off looking.)

So not anything shocking, but my abs are finally starting to break through! The top two are finally getting defined and that little dip in the middle is happening. (Clearly, I know exactly what I'm talking about, lol.) I can see them really well in the mornings (duh..) or when I'm mid-workout dying/can't breath. For some reason they love to come out then. Like here..

Was mid-death during cardio and decided I had to take a picture, lol. I'm not sure why one side is better than the other, but that's fine. Bodies gonna do what it's gonna do. 

And then maybe my favorite thing ever...these arms!!! I love the arms. They always seem to show up before anything else. (Maybe that's normal? Again, CLEARLY I'm no expert, lol.) 

And then I have to just throw this in because I think it's pretty cool...

From the day before I first started any of this, back in March to this week. Sometimes I'm human, and I do get discouraged and feel like it takes soooo long to get anywhere (and so hard not to compare ourselves to others who've been working hard for years!) BUT this reminds me that I've come a long way! And obviously I'm talking strictly body changes here...since this is a "program review" I don't think I need to get all into my eating and how I've changed in that way since I started. (WHOLE OTHER NOT-QUICK TOPIC...)

BUT eating clean and the meal plan are a still important. It's the same plan as the original fix, so my eating didn't really change at all. Still using the color coded containers. Which I've been using long enough now that I sort of tweaked my own plan, which is really the goal and the way I explain it to everyone too. It's a learning tool. Use it. Learn it. Tweak it. That's my motto at least. So I did not eat perfectly, but that's what I'm sort of learning to do. 4th of July happened, a weekend in Austin happened, and I ended up having a few beers on each occasion. Not a lot, but we all know what beer does. I didn't wake up feeling great. And I definitely didn't want to work out, lol. So while alcohol is okay on the plan (in moderation, and in exchange for other carbs during the week) I personally like to keep my drinking to a very minimum. Just not worth it. For me...personally. 

Breakfast straight from the meal plan booklet. 

And then on top of my Shakeology, I was drinking "recover" almost every day because these workouts had me SO sore. So this helped. (And tastes like a BONUS.) 

So, back to the workouts for a second. I didn't really explain them at all, did I? So real quick ("quick" is getting longer and longer here, I know...) here's how the schedule went. Plyo fix, upper fix, pilates fix, lower fix, cardio fix, dirty 30 (cardio/weights/everything) and then yoga fix. So it's every single day, but yoga is really an "active recovery day" so not sure it counts as "working out." But oh my gosh, it always feels so good to just stretch. I looove the yoga videos. (Both the original and Extreme versions.) I posted a few videos to my Instagram over the weeks (see here and here), but here's a little extra video I made and never posted. It's from the "lower fix." 

For real, jumping is A LOT harder than it looks! I'm actually really weird and sort of a perfectionist when it comes to these videos...and I didn't like this one, haha. But showing it here anyhow! You can tell I'm not the best at the moves (especially balancing on one foot), but I am trying my best. And like I said,  that's ALL that matters! The hardest part about the Extreme versus the original, is that it goes MUCH faster. There's less rest time, so that makes it all harder for sure. But I am NOT against hitting pause an extra 20 seconds if I need to. And of course, the moves are more intense in the Extreme. They're aimed to worked every muscle possible. (Which is why I think you get WAY better results.) 

So I guess my real "advice" from doing this program now two times is this...if you are a normal person, do the 21 Day Fix first. Do it however many times you need to until you feel like you've "got it." And then PUSH yourself and give this program a try. And then do it at least another time because you will for sure cry the first time. Just kidding. But it will be hard!

But you know what? WE CAN DO HARD THINGS. I think the greatest thing I've learned from starting these programs and changing my eating/relationship with food...and my whole life basically, is that we can literally do ANYTHING. Anything. And we should! That's how we GROW! By doing things that are hard, or uncomfortable or scary, we are growing in tremendous ways. And if you're not growing, you're not changing. And if you think you don't need to change anything in your life, then good for you! That's great! But if you know you can do better, or there's something you want to do but think it's too hard, or think that you can't, or if you're just too scared - FRICKING DO IT! You know, yesterday I made this live Facebook video while I opened and looked over my new program, and I was (sorry) FUCKING TERRIFIED. I wanted to do it. But I did not want to do it. (If that makes any sense, lol.) I thought it was a good idea because I do want to make more videos in the future so I need practice, and I love to talk to people about this stuff. But I was so scared because talking LIVE especially, is not my best...outlet of expression. I need a keyboard. But I know I'm not a robot, and I need to use my voice also. I need to get over it. So I thought to myself, "don't go to bed with fucking regrets today" so I did it, lol. And, it was nothing. It wasn't as scary as I thought. It sucked, for sure, haha. But I just FRICKING did it and I'm over the fear of it now. (Next time I will try to keep it under 10 minutes though, lol.) 

So just a little off-ramble there. But for real, anyone who reads this. YOU ARE A FRICKING GIFT TO THE WORLD! DO AWESOME THINGS! MAKE USE OF YOUR TIME! That's all I have to say. And if you aren't working out. Start. Because then you can get some of these crazy-level endorphins I'm running on right now, haha. 

Until nexxxxt time! xx

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Still not Beyonce.

I just took this picture after I did yoga in basically the dark and almost cried when I couldn't hold a stupid balance pose. Because for some reason I think I should be good at everything, including advanced yoga.

I'm not really sure where this is going to go or what I'm really even here to write about, I just know I need to write. I had a pretty bad day last Friday, and it's left me feeling like everything just sucks. I've mentioned before that I'm very prone to depression, but I'm usually pretty good at fighting against it too. (In case anyone's ever wondered why my life goal is to learn the secret to happiness. There it is.) But sometimes, I push, push, push it away and then one thing happens that knocks me down...then another and then another and HELLO, end of the world. I guess that's sort of what happened this past week. And because everything that happened was my own damn fault, I focus on what I did/am doing wrong and I get all sucked into this self inflicted state of depression where I start telling myself that I can't do anything right. That I suck at life. That there's no hope for me. And I just get super down on myself and it's hard to come back from that place. I always do, but it takes some convincing from myself that I don't in fact suck at life. So I guess thats why I'm here tonight. To go over my convincing argument..

So what happened on Friday was first of all SO ridiculous I am not even going to admit what threw me over, but something happened and on top of a few other things that happened last week (also pretty ridiculous in the grand scheme of life) I just lost it. I felt so hopeless all of a sudden and I got this urge to just seriously quit life. Does anyone else ever feel like that? Whenever things become too much, or I really fuck up a lot, my mind just immediately goes to this place where I feel like it can never get better so I should just give up. It's fucked up. And ridiculous because I know better than to believe that. But that's how I feel. At first I tried to blame all my problems on other things. I posted on my Instagram how being online all the time was causing me troubles. But really, it's my own damn fault how much time I spend online. And then last week I also posted about how I'm working out too much and my body hates me. And about how I'm being too strict with my eating "plan" and how I freaked the fuck out over a cheeseburger. So in hindsight, I should have known this was coming.

I'm being a crazy person. I'm doing too much. Trying to be too much. And I need to stop.

Now, don't laugh. Because in comparison to most people in the world I am not doing much at all. But to me, I am. I guess I haven't talked about it too much here (because I'm too busy..) but I'm REALLY going full steam ahead with being a Beachbody coach. I am seriously so passionate about it and I have never gone after a "career" before, I more or less just "fall" into things. So because I really want this, I am ALL IN. And it's not easy. But I know I can do it.'s not easy and there are no shortcuts.  I have to put in my time. And a big part of that IS BEING ONLINE. Documenting my own journey, sharing what I'm learning, talking about what's working for me and inviting others to join. And then I'm participating in so many Facebook groups and leading multiple groups and getting in on every single training that I can get my hands on and listening in on calls and watching Youtube videos while I eat lunch or brush my teeth and writing ten page emails to people who want to know more because I AM ME AND I OVER DO IT. But I love all this, don't think for a second that I don't! But then there's that thing that happens when we open up Instagram, or Facebook or Pinterest or fricking Snapchat...time disappears. So yeah, I spend TOO MUCH time online.

And I am working out hard. I am pushing myself. But I want to. It's part of my journey to prove to myself I can do anything and I'm addicted to the challenge now. But I also know that I need to because again, I am taking this SO seriously. I know I have to put in the time and do the hard work and be an example that says "LOOK I did it, and so can you!" It's a huge part of the reason I became a coach. It's my accountability and I want to show anyone else who spent their life thinking they can't, that they can. But this past week, I pushed myself too far. And I know it. 

And then this stupid meal plan. I don't even want to talk about it. I am so over it because it's in my head all damn day. And by "meal plan" I just mean a combination of the 21 Day Fix plan and other things I've learned along the way. I basically just mean, the "plan" I am trying to teach myself. I'm finally beginning to learn what works for me, but it's hard. And it might always be hard for me. I have bad days. And I'm really hard on myself. But I'm learning every single day how to get better, and I will get there. But right now, in the beginning, it's a lot mentally. So add a food related breakdown onto anything else and it does feel like the end of the world.

Those are just a few examples of areas where I'm not perfect and I feel like I should be, or have to be if I really want this to work. So when things go wrong, I feel crushed. AND what's probably really throwing me over, is that I've been neglecting so many other parts of my life making me feel like a failure for not being able to do it all. There's this blog for example! It's a constant thing in the back of my mind that I know I NEED to put effort into because it's important to me, but I'm not making time for it. There are so many books I'm "reading" that I want to just soak in every single word and apply them to my life, but I can't even get myself to read for even 20 minutes a day sometimes. My brain just won't calm down! And I'm barely sleeping! John went to bed an hour and a half ago, and here I am. If I'm not blogging (which obviously I haven't been, lol) I'm doing something else on my never ending "list." OH and then I can't forget the most important thing I've been neglecting lately...FINDING A PART TIME JOB! (Until I make the big bucks, lol.) I am SO FOCUSED on all this stuff, yet so unorganized, and pushing myself to try to do everything and then feeling guilty about all the things I'm not doing. So I'm breaking.

But OF COURSE I am. Because I cannot do it all.

But I cannot allow that broken feeling, or fear of failing or thoughts that I can't keep up or that I'm not good enough let me quit. And I definitely cannot allow myself to sink down into that little hole of depression where I tell myself nothing matters. I can't and I won't let that happen. It WILL be hard for a while because while I'm working on myself BIG TIME, I'm also basically teaching myself a business and marketing myself, by myself. It can easily become "too much." And I realize how stupid this may sound, and feel free to judge me for being honest. But if you've ever really, really wanted something and you were like obsessed, you'd get it. It's a lot. And it's mostly focused on ME, so it's probably more mentally exhausting than anything else. It's about me taking control of my life and my happiness and my future and my everything, so of course I am obsessed. But I think I might be getting to the point where I am hurting myself more than helping myself. I need to slow down. I can't be everywhere. I can't do everything. I need to get organized and create some balance with it all. I have other parts of my life that need attention too. And I have to remember, part of being a coach is setting a good example, and this is not it. I can't be perfect because no one's perfect. 

I don't know. I feel like I could go on and on justifying why I want to do it all and why I can't, and all of this just reminds me of that Beyonce quote that I hate so much. I'm even sitting here right now looking at my haggard nails and thinking how I wanted to paint them today, but I didn't have time and WHAT IF I NEED TO TAKE AN INSTAGRAM PICTURE WITH MY HANDS?! So I'm tempted to stay up even later. But life isn't on Beyonce time! We cannot do it all and we cannot be it all! That is the reality of life. And that whole saying "you have as any hours in a day as Beyonce" really does piss me off. I mean, just go to Pinterest and type in Beyonce. It's all "GRIND. SLAY. WIN." Which I get. I love. Girl power. We can do amazing, awesome things. But NO ONE IS BEYONCE! I'm going to make a mug that says that on it. Who else wants one? 


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

7/3/16 (...because nothing exciting happened on 7/4, lol.)

I'm not even going to talk about this cheeseburger right now, but it seemed like an appropriate 4th of July post photo, lol. Right? Except we didn't grill it...we cheated and went to In & Out Burger. But really, why grill when you live down the street from In & Out? We never have to grill again. Except if I wanted a hot dog....then in that case, that's what Costco is for. Right? (Kidding, I'm kidding.)

Anyways, not really here to talk about food or fireworks or really anything 4th of July related, because the best part about this weekend was meeting up with some old friends from Omaha! I already went into this a bit on Instagram, but we were really good friends with these guys (Tommy and Amanda!) back when we lived there too. They're not from there either, and actually moved there the same week we did and we ended up meeting them through some mutual work friends of Johns and we just really clicked with them. We even drove 8 hours to their wedding when they got married! We don't do that for anyone, lol! But do you have any idea how hard it is to find good couple friends?? The hardest. We've only ever had a handful of couple friends because either John doesn't like the guy, or I don't care for the girl. Or they're just not our kind of people. And that's totally okay! I'm pretty sure we're not meant to be friends with everyone and that's why I don't really feel bad about, 3 friends. (Kidding,  kidding.) 

For fun let's just throw a throwback in here. "Friendsgiving" 2012. Or 2013? My phone says March, so maybe..."Easter giving?" Who knows. Most of us there were in the "traveling" business, so we'd always have these holiday parties because we didn't have any family there. It was actually pretty cool. (Not cool is this dark hair and very tan filter though, lol...) 

So they actually still live in Omaha, and like I also said on Instagram (basically I do short blog posts on my Instagram captions now) Amanda and I reconnected recently over fitness and she is hands down my BFF right now. (After you of course, John.) So when they said they were coming out for the weekend to visit his family in Dallas, we were like, "WE HAVE TO HANG OUT!!!" John actually had to work a bit on Sunday so we didn't get a ton of time with them, but we went over there later that night for a little pool party and oh my gosh. It was so good to see them. She came out to the car when we got there and her little voice was so cute I was like, "OH MY GOSH I MISSED YOUR VOICE." Hahaha. (Maybe that's what phones are for, lol?) So anyways, it was just so fun and so good to see them. We had the whole "3 years in 3 minutes catch up" (John's idea, lol) and then we just talked and hung out. Drank a few beers. Had some snacks. (You KNOW I brought snacks.) Swam. And then we all got tired and called it a night because we aren't 24 anymore, haha. (Talking about some of the weekends we had back in the day...was...crazy.) 

I wouldn't normally post bikini pictures (like first one in this blogs history)...but YOLO guys. YOLO. (Plus this is the first year I'm fine with how I look. Not saying I think I look perfect. I could tear myself up if I wanted to, but I'm done with that.)

I told the boys I needed a picture of them and they did this? No clue, lol. 

Then we tried to get a picture in front of the pool and this happened...


...look at the giant waves we made, hahahahah. I love it. You know how (if you're a girl at least) you try to hold off getting your hair wet forever? And then once it is, it's like game over, lol? That's how this was. Once we fell in I was like, alright, YOLO... 

We had a whole trick-off and I turned into some kind of gymnast (in my head) and thought I had the best tricks but no one was impressed with my cartwheels and star jumps off the diving board, hahaha. (John kept calling them jumping jacks lol.) And then like I said...we got tired and called it a night, haha. Plus they had to drive back the next morning. I said about a million times, "you guys should move here!!" And they were like, "you guys should move back!!" Haha, neither will probably ever happen but I'm sure we will run into them again. AND there's always the internet. (Where I'm always keeping in contact with her now anyways, lol.)

So then out of nowhere, right after we left, it started storming like crazy. And it kept storming ALLL night. (Like hail and everything and I was staring out the window in the middle of the night thinking, "OH F**K" because of our new car, lol. But it's fine.) Then the next morning (yesterday), 4th of July, John got a call that he HAD to go into work because there was severe flood damage at his job site, so  it was a good thing we didn't have any plans! And to be honest...I can barely handle having a few beers anymore, so I was totally fine with just chilling out yesterday. When he got home we just had dinner, watched part of Ted 2 (lol) and were in bed by like, 9:30. Then I about died this morning when John texted me this....

We went to bed at the same time and he asked me if I saw any fireworks, haha. At first I thought maybe he meant to ask someone else that? I think he's losing his mind a bit, lol. He needs a whole day off...hopefully next weekend. I would end this by saying, "I might shut down my blog this week" but I've said that about four times now, so who cares at this point, haha. But I WILL do it...sometime.  That whole "gypsy lifestyle" intro on the side has to change now. And I could probably use a new selfie, lol. But probably not going to happening this week...
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