Tag: beachbodyondemand

CIZEd it Up: reflections & realization that I’m not a professional dancer

CIZE (c) beachbody.com

So there is another fitness program review page up under the fitness tab. Since I had decided that I wasn’t quite in the mood to finish Barre Blend (but will be finishing up the last four weeks throughout the rest of the year)–I transitioned to CIZE for the month of March and the beginning of April.

While I’ve had the program for years (it came out on DVD back in 2015, when Beachbody was still releasing their workout programs on DVD), I never could make it all the way through the program.

It wasn’t that I didn’t like the program or the trainer–it was that I kept getting frustrated with how fast the routines would progress. Since I’m someone who has always considered herself as someone with two left feet–I will fully admit that when it comes to dancing, I gete frustrated quite easily.

But since one of the words I chose for 2021 was growth–I decided that I would give the program another try, and instead of focsuing on getting each move down perfect, I would focus on having fun and learning something different.

This was actually the mindset I started to cultivate last year when I was in my first round of 10 rounds–I know that I won’t be a professional mixed martial art fighter, just like I know I will never be a professional dancer, but I can go through the programs with the focus on enjoying moving my body and learning something new.

I have no idea on whether or not I lost a lot of inches, nor do I know how many pounds may have been lost or gained during this program–as those aren’t things that I’m focusing on during my journey now.

My focus now is getting into the best shape of my life, which may mean that I do lose weight, but at the same time I know I will also be focusing on gaining muscle and self-confidence as well.

On a side note, I did the preview workout for Shaun T’s newest program: Let’s Get Up! I enjoyed it–it is looking to be a mix of dance (but easier to follow than CIZE–no big choreograph dances) and resistance training. I may end up breaking my no-buying early access to a workout program when the early access is available for this one.

I gave CIZE 4.5 out of 5 stars–only because there wasn’t a ‘modifier’ (or someone dancing just a little slower than the others). I do plan on doing another round of CIZE probably sometime in 2022 or 2023.

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Pausing Barre Blend and moving on to CIZE

So I decided over the weekend that I was going to put finishing Barre Blend on hold and try to find a workout program that I would find energizing and hopefully would stick with it.

This isn’t to say that I’m not going to finish the last half of Barre Blend–I will, probably by doing the last four weeks a week at a time between other workout programs.

I’d mentioned earlier that I tried to start Barre Blend last year, and only made it through week 1. This year, I managed to make it through the first half of the program, and while it isn’t a favorite–I decided that I’d ‘pause’ my time with the workout (instead of trying to force myself to do the workouts), and move on to something else.

While I like the fact that the program is low-impact and focuses on toning, one of my main issues with the program are the lunges (both in the warm-up and throughout the workouts). I know that I can do them with less range of motion (and I do), but then the problem becomes the number of repeats–which starts to irritate my knees. Not to mention the fact that I’m working out on an area rug, so rotating also becomes an issue (unless I wear the dance socks for shoes).

So while I’ve only done half the program, these are the things that I like (and dislike) about Barre Blend:


Every day is a ‘new’ workout–the program was filmed live for 8 weeks.

There is a low impact option and a modifier to follow

The first four weeks the workouts are only 30 minutes long; the last four weeks (which I haven’t done yet) the time range is 35-40 minutes. So all-in-all, the program is between 30-40 minutes.


The number and types of lunges

The barre

The occasional emphasis for nutrition and weight loss

So the first four weeks of the program weren’t my favorite–the last half could be my favorite, but only time will tell. I’m pretty sure that I can handle the program a week at a time and done between other programs. So I will finish the program this year, but broken up into more manageable chunks.

The dislikes are strictly personal–lunges have (and will always) be problematic for me due to my bone structure. My dislike of the ‘barre’ is the fact that mine currently is a chair that I have to keep moving around the room during the workout.

The dislike of the emphasis on nutrition and weight loss, is simply because I’ve removed the word ‘diet’ from my self-talk and vocabulary over a year ago, and I’m working out to help improve (and stabilize) my mental and emotional health–I’m not working out to achieve a certain number on the scale or clothing size.

With ‘pausing’ the last four weeks of Barre Blend, I decided I would move on and try CIZE, which is Shaun T’s dance program that he released three years ago (I think) with Beachbody. While I will never be a professional dancer (and will probably never dance in public in general)–I can at least learn to dance with my two left feet in the sanctuary of my own house.

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Muscle Burns Fat Advance finished: Second workout program of 2021 in the books

So yesterday marked the end of Muscle Burns Fat Advanced and I’ve completed my second program for 2021.

As I mentioned in the review page for the program, this was a continuation of the first three week program (Muscle Burns Fat) that I completed basically mid-January.

While I’m not a fan of certain parts of the program (looking at you BOD ropes and Saturday workouts), I did enjoy these programs overall.

Decline alternating press with hip lift. Managed these–barely. MBFA (c) beachbody

I did get stronger–several exercises I managed to lift 20 pounds, when looking back at weight trackers for other programs, I maxed out at 14 pounds.

I managed to beat my AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) score each week with this program. In part because I was getting stronger and faster, and in part because there were fewer lunges (a move I still need to go slow on to have proper form).

I also managed to hold other positions, that again months ago I struggled with. So while I may not have made it through every burnout minute (otherwise known as the Megan Minute) after each round–I lasted at least thirty to forty-five seconds.

When doing muscle burns fat I was hesitant on whether or not I’d be doing another round of the two programs. I can now state that I will be doing a second round of the programs, but probably sometime in 2022 or 2023, as I already have the rest of this year’s workout calendar scheduled.

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Thoughts after completing first round of Muscle Burns Fat

So last week marked the end of my first round of Muscle Burns Fat.

This was a three-week program that Beachbody released last year–I started it right after I finished my first round of 10 Rounds, and am currently going through the follow-up program Muscle Burns Fat Advance (review coming early Feb).

So, as I mentioned on the page for Muscle Burns Fat that I posted under the fitness tab–I came to enjoy the program towards the end.

I’ve realized that I really do enjoy lifting weights and strength training–though some exercises (such as triceps pushups or dips)–are no-go’s due to my arm bone structure (I have slightly curved arms).

I’m still working on trying to do a ‘normal’ lunge without weights–I have no idea when I will be able to hold weights and do a lunge–but it is something I’m working on.

The main downsides that I felt with the program were the BOD ropes–I hate them (even with going into the next program), it just doesn’t feel like I’m getting my heart rate up with them, and also I get tired of occasionally hitting myself in the leg or arm with them.

Also I didn’t like how ‘static lunges’ were called ‘split-squats’. A lunge is a lunge; if you split a squat in half–you’re doing a damn lunge.

I did get use to the format of the program–it was filmed during the pandemic, so all the cast were working out via Zoom, so it was getting little peaks into people’s lives and homes. I just found it strange and a little distracting at first when a second screen would pop-up at the top of the video.

While it has been awhile since I’ve done 21-Day Fix (and I’m actually going to be doing the live version come March–after I finish both MBFA and then Barre Blend), the formats of the two programs were different.

21-Day Fix has two days of active recovery–Pilates and yoga (days 4 and 7, if I’m remembering correctly), Muscle Burns Fat only has one day of active recovery and that is day 7 (Sunday).

Another difference is that while both have modifiers, 21-Day Fix also had someone working out with the resistant band on a few of the days–muscle burns fat was straight dumbbells.

I did start to enjoy the program towards the end–though I will probably always detest the EMOM (every minute on the minute) workouts, hopefully when I do a second round of the program, I’m either lifting heavier or able to do all the push-ups.

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Review of LIIFT4 and YBB Combo Program–a few weeks late.

So I realized that I’m about two weeks late in posting my latest workout summary. I managed to finish LIIFT4 mid-month, and then started on 10 Rounds.

LIIFT4 is a combination weightlifting and HIIT workout program—that is only 4 days a week. Which is one of the things that I really love about, it is two days working out one day off, two days working out and then the weekend to recover.

So it had been about two years since I did my first round of LIIFT4—the first time was actually when the program had been released by Beachbody (so it was late summer 2018).

My filled out LIIFT4 weight progression tracker. This was the end of my 1st Round in 2018

2018 wasn’t a good year for me—we had lost three of our dogs (two of which were in October and four days apart). So needless to say—fitness and nutrition wasn’t really on my radar for the last few months of 2018 and for most of 2019.

I’ve only really gotten serious about trying to get back into a workout routine this year (and I would say that it has really only been since June).

So with the second round of LIIFT4 I had managed to get my five pound weights out of storage, I bought a pair of 12 pound weights and I felt a little stronger since I was also coming off of just finishing Morning Meltdown 100.

My weight tracker for my second round of LIIFT4 (excel is a wonderful tool).

I will admit that I lift lighter with some exercises all the way throughout the program—for example the reverse fly I stayed with five pounds more often than not. This was to ensure that I had the correct form. One of the things I’ve realized over the past few years—I have to modify and/or go light on numerous exercises due to my bone structure.

What I mean by that is that I have slight curvature to my arms—they aren’t straight, which means that I also can’t do triceps pushups correctly (so I usually just try to work on normal pushups instead).

So for all of the lifting workouts my weight selections ranged from 2 to 20 pounds (2, 5, 8, 10, 12, 14, and 20). For some of the legs where only one dumbbell was needed—I tried to hold two, to have a slight increase in weight (namely for the goblet sumo). I managed that for a week. Then we had an ice storm—there was a couple weeks worth of lawn work, so I went light some days on the weights since I still had work to do in the yards.

Lunges are still a work in progress (with or without the weights)—mainly because of the fact that I’m slightly bow legged and one leg is a little longer than the other. This makes balance at times a little difficult. I do side lunges better than the normal back/forth lunges.

I had also worked in a little yoga booty ballet during the first few weeks of the program on the rest days. I enjoy doing that program because it is more toning and sculpting. While I didn’t finish that program per say—I did manage to do each workout at least once; and I may finish out 2020 with YBB (since I’m suppose to be done with 10 rounds on either Dec 25th or Dec 26th); and that way I can start 2021 (on the 4th) with a program from the start.

The third round of LIIFT4 will possibly be done again sometime in 2021 or possibly in 2022 (depending on what I have planned and if I feel like trying to change things up). But this is a great program for learning how to lift weights and since they’re ‘live’ you aren’t doing the same workout over and over again (at least until you repeat the program).

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My next fitness challenge: combining Yoga Booty Ballet with LIIFT4

So I am going to be finishing up with my first round of morning meltdown-100 next week (specifically on Sept 15th), and then moving right into a combo/hybrid workout of another two programs—LIIFT4 (which will be my second time going through the program) and Yoga Booty Ballet (specifically using their abs & butt makeover calendar).

I’m combining these two programs for the following reasons: 1) I want to continue doing weight training, and I really enjoyed doing LIIFT 4; 2) I’ve always enjoyed the Yoga Booty Ballet program (and actually this was the first program I bought from Beachbody years ago); and 3) I think they will complement each other nicely.

The workouts in each program are between 30 and 45 minutes—which is basically the current amount of time I want to spend working out (especially in the mornings), and while the yoga booty ballet workouts aren’t ‘live’—I don’t mind doing them on repeat for the next eight and a half weeks.

One goal for this combination is to see if by the end of the program am I lifting heavier than I did at the end of the first round of LIIFT4?? I’m hoping with coming off of morning meltdown 100, I will be lifting a little heavier for some of the exercises (though I also know that there are several that I’ll still be lifting “light” on for quite a while as well). So we will have to see mid-November how much heavier I’m lifting on some of the exercises.

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Review of Pisces new moon goals

So the moon is going to be moving into the Aries constellation over the next day or so, and transitioning through a new moon phase—and it will be the start of a new astrological year. So before I get into trying to set goals for the Aries new moon, I should look back on the goals that I set for the Pisces new moon and see how I did with each of them.

So what were the goals for the Pisces new moon?

            Get back into a meditation routine—preferably at night, but may try morning as well.

            Start doodling again, and possibly turn one of the doodles into a cross-stitch pattern (and teach myself how to cross-stitch).

            Daily workout (Beachbody or possibly see if I can find a free online belly dancing workout)

In terms of meditation—I’m still trying to figure out the best routine at night. I’ve bought a meditation pillow (though it is smaller than it looked in the pictures), and am trying to figure out the best time that works for me. Currently I usually try to meditate at night before going to bed. Since I’ve been having problems with the time—I’m going to try to set aside fifteen minutes (probably before brushing my teeth) for meditation at night.

In terms of doodling—this didn’t happen. I’ve been a little too irritated with the world (mainly because of the mishandling of the pandemic response) to try to draw (or even color).

In terms of working out—this I have managed to do. I started doing Morning Meltdown 100 on beachbodyondemand. I have only taken two days off (brother & his dog were in town, and needed to help keep the peace). But I’m liking the program—and currently I’m more focused on toning and losing inches than I am on losing weight—that would be great, but I’m not going to go out of my mind trying to micromanage what I’m eating.

I know that nutrition plays a large part in losing weight—but with the current atmosphere (global pandemic) I’m more concerned with trying to keep my anxiety and stress under control than I am about having my nutrition totally under control.

And I am remembering: Progress not Perfection

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Is there a reboot button or a return button for 2020?

So entering week 2 of the self-quarantine period due to the global pandemic of the novel coronavirus. Though truthfully, I’ve only been out of the house probably a total of a dozen times or so since early December (and only seven of those times were purposefully around other people)—the other six (or more) have been walks at Boomer, and I’ve only nodded, smiled, or said hello to people.

I’ve realized that while I don’t mind staying around the house (and I didn’t realize how close to being totally burnt out at work I was until I started my reboot break), I truthfully don’t like being told I have too—but I’m going to, because I would like the pandemic to be brought under control.

So what are some of the things that I’m going to be doing during this up coming week?

Cleaning, organizing, and getting rid of things from my bedroom (which also serves as my exercise room, my office, and my zen space)

Filing my taxes—yes there has been an extension, but if you’re going to get money back—why wait longer than you already have?

Organizing all my digital photos—getting rid of the really blurry ones, and then creating folders for all the others. I’m thinking that since most of my pictures are of different birds—I’m going to aim at keeping fifty to seventy-five photos (per year). For the trips I’ve taken—I’ll only get rid of the really blurry photographs.

Continue working on my afghan

Continue with a daily workout schedule (I’m back on doing Morning Meltdown 100 after a two day break).

Continue trying to brainstorm ideas for the blog, and continue journaling in general


Working through various e-courses that I’ve bought

Ask two or three people what they think my top five skills are

Try to actually then make a daily schedule that I will hopefully keep with so that I can start getting quite a bit more accomplished each day

Finally continue working on trying to figure out what I want to do with my life

Also remember that while it is a pain to be “stuck” in the house now–if we all do our part, the time required will go quickly. If people continue to ignore the request–the time will continue to drag on.

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