Monday, December 16, 2013

5 Ways to Stay on Track Over the Holidays (Without Going Insane)

Ahh, the holidays are upon us once again.  If you are anything like me, you have lots of gatherings coming up with family, friends, coworkers,or even just you and your significant other having some quality time to yourselves!  So with all of this, often comes the anxiety and guilt associated with figuring out what to eat at all of these parties, or how to stay motivated to work out.  And you're also getting bombarded with magazine covers that are trying to show you how to "Beat Holiday Weight Gain", etc.  Well, bah humbug!  Instead of deciding that you need to log 90 minutes on the treadmill, or that you need to eat nothing but celery at your next holiday party, try these 5 tips to help keep you on track, without being too hard on yourself!  After all, what good would it be if you lost 5 pounds over the holidays but were a total Scrooge the whole time and no one wanted to hang out with your grumpy self??  No one needs that!

5 Real Life Tips for Healthy Holidays

1.  Make a Plan

This means for your meals, snacks, and workout time.  If you map out your week, including all gatherings, shopping trips, and other time commitments, you will be much more likely to stay focused on your goals.  I like a BIG calendar with lots of space to write, so I will print out a weekly agenda page or even one page per day and start filling in spaces.  Plan out your workouts and relaxation time (because this IS important too, especially around the holidays - you must de-stress!) and sketch out your meals, along with that you have on hand for snacks.  That will help remind you that there are healthy things you can eat, so you don't just grab the first pre-packaged thing you see.  Raise your hand if you have a bunch of veggies pushed to the back of the fridge that you've been ignoring.  Go ahead, I wont judge you.  ;)  If there is a party or work lunch or something coming up, think about the choices that will be available and how you can make them work for you!  Which leads me to...

2.  Make Good Choices

For a lot of us, restaurants and parties are where we really tend to get off track with our eating.  Luckily, if we think about things ahead of time and make a plan, we can alleviate some of the stress about what to eat.  Ok, so make a plan - but what should I plan to eat?  This is where you will have to use your best judgement, but here are some guidelines.  For example, avoid things that are fried.  Restaurants for the most part do not use good oils to fry things in, and fried things are often coated in refined starches of some kind.  Two strikes against fried foods - so avoid them.  For your main course "meat dish", try to stick with things that are roasted, grilled, or baked, and pile up the veggies instead of the mashed potatoes or fries.  You can always sub out potatoes for the "veggie of the day" or even a small side salad.  Salads are a good choice, but watch your toppings and dressing serving size.  I previously mentioned refined starches/carbs.  Those are things like crackers, bread, cakes, cookies, sweets in general.  Limit these to avoid an insulin spike that will actually make you hungrier in the long run, and can make you crave MORE bad foods!  So, how about some other party foods:  Dips and spreads - this is a tough one.  Some of these things are made with healthy ingredients, but most are not, especially if they come prepackaged.  So it's best to use these sparingly with your veggies.  Veggies are what I would consider a free for all food, honestly.  It is VERY hard to overeat on veggies - assuming they are not in some kind of cheesy casserole.  ;)  Fruit is another great thing to add to your plate in place of sweets.  Sure, fruit has some sugar, but it also contains fiber and lots of great health benefits, so that makes it a better choice.  Nuts are also a good choice because for the most part, the are in the category of good fats - just don't overdo it, and don't go for the nuts doused in a bunch of sugar.  Deviled eggs are generally ok to eat as well.  Even though they are usually made with unhealthy oils (in mayo), small amounts are fine - and will give you health benefits of eggs, like protein and good fats, which will help you stay full and satisfied.  EAT the foods you know are healthy - fuel up with the good stuff.  And for goodness sake, no starving yourself - eat every 3 hours!

3.  Listen to Your Body

Holiday parties are tough - there is ALL of this gorgeous, delicious looking food, and you want to sample it all.  Did you know that there have actually been studies that show that we tend to eat more when we have a big variety of foods to choose from?  Makes sense, right?  A little of this, a little of that...  Well, don't worry, you can sample a lot of different HEALTHY foods - just skip over the bad stuff or take a VERY small spoonful if you want.  Is chocolate or cupcakes or chips or something like that a "trigger food" for you, meaning, does it make you want MORE and send you into a downward spiral?  Then avoid those foods altogether, and save yourself the hassle.  The key here is to listen to your body when it tells you that you are satisfied.  Try to stop there - at satisfied or full.  You shouldn't feel stuffed or uncomfortable.  You want to feel good and enjoy yourself without unbuttoning your jeans, right?  (Yes, I've done it, don't judge me!)  So don't overdo it.

4.  Make Time For Fitness

I know the holiday season can be super busy, but it's so important to schedule some "me time" in your week!  However, iff you are busy and stressed, I don't advocate going to the gym and killing yourself for an hour and a half.  This actually causes MORE stress for the body and raises cortisol levels.  Yep, cortisol - the fat hormone!  There are SO many great short workouts out there these days.  Know why?  Because the experts have found through scientific studies, that short increments of exercise are best, especially when done along side resistance training.  What does that mean?  Basically, they are saying that the body gets the most benefit from the first 30 minutes of cardio, especially when it is intense and involves really raising the heart rate.  So choosing something like a HIIT (high intensity interval training) or another short and intense workout is a great idea.  You can find ideas on YouTube, Instagram, and I have a January challenge starting in the new year that is ALL 30 minute workouts (feel free to use the Contact button or find me on Facebook about this).  So definitely plug into these resources!  Any time you spend working out during the holidays is a great investment in yourself, and will help so much in relieving stress, even if it's just some simple stretching and yoga.  So be kind to your body and give it some love!  That being said...

5.  Relax!

You don't have to be perfect!  There, I've given you permission to chill out a little.  Believe me when I tell you that the point of this article was NOT to make you feel bad about your habits, or to shame you out of having a slice of pie at grandma's this year.  There are ENOUGH articles out there that do just that.  I want you to enjoy
your holiday, enjoy your friends and family.  And I know that for a lot of us, that is tied to food, so the best we can do is try and make the right choices as we go.  Just being conscious of our goals and having them in the back of our mind is a huge step.  If there is a dish you love, enjoy it!  Have that treat if it's worth it and you won't feel bad about it!  Just balance the rest of your choices accordingly.  So here are the things I DON'T want you to do.  Don't weigh yourself incessantly.  Please, just don't.  Seriously, we all know that there is going to be some indulging going on with food and alcohol, so you are going to get a little bloat going on.  Just drink your water and move on.  Don't make it worse by making yourself feel bad about what you weigh!  Also, don't try to exercise away your bad food choices.  For one, it doesn't work.  And two, it can actually make things worse (see cortisol comment above).  Depriving yourself by just plain not eating is also a really bad idea.  Your body needs fuel, just make sure it's the nutrient dense, REAL stuff, and you'll do great!  Just stick with the plan.  ;)

Another thing worth mentioning is that it helps to surround yourself with people who have similar goals to yours.  Did you know that I have a 100% free fitness group on Facebook just for this purpose?  We'd love to have you join us.  We'll be talking a lot about staying motivated, and how to make it through the holidays with our sanity intact.  ;)  If you'd like to join, click here and I will make sure I reach out to you and get you added.  Have a great holiday, everyone!!

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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Easy Chocolate Shakeology Pudding

This is a recipe I came up with that is SO easy - does not involve cooking, and is loaded with superfoods (from your Shakeology of course!) and good fats from avocado.  All you need is a few ingredients and a food processor.  I used my Ninja.

No-Cook Chocolate Shakeology Pudding

1 ripe avocado, skin and seed removed (chilled is best)
1 ripe banana, peeled (chilled or frozen)
1 scoop Chocolate Shakeology
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, more as needed

Add all ingredients to a food processor and blend until creamy.  Add a tiny bit of almond milk as needed for consistency.  Makes 2 servings.  Enjoy!

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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

P90X3 is here!

Today is the day!  P90X3 will be launching in the Team Beachbody Shop by the end of the day.  I will be jumping on this, as I have never done a Tony Horton workout (crazy, right?) so I am super excited!  What's really great about this program is that you do NOT have to have completed either P90X or X2 in order to start this!  There are modifiers in the videos and you truly can start at any fitness level!  
I will be forming an "Extreme Accountability" challenge group for this program so to stay current on all the latest news in regards to that, go ahead and make me your coach so you get my newsletter, and follow my Like page on Facebook for updates!
More Q&A about this epic release today:
When is P90X3 available for purchase?
P90X3 will be available to order by end of day 12/10.
Where is P90X3 available for purchase?
Find it in the TBB Store and take advantage of free shipping until 12/31. The tool kit will also be available by end of day 12/10.
When should I order it to guarantee I get it by Christmas?
Order by 12/15 11:59 PM to guarantee delivery by 12/25.
What special offer is associated with the release of P90X3?
All orders of P90X3, purchased on, through a Coach or through a Challenge Pack, from 12/10/13 through 12/31/13 will include a free P90X3 hat. There are no hats for P90X or P90X2 orders at this time.
Is there an App available?
The P90X App will be available for Android on 12/10 and the Android version will include the ability to track P90X3 workouts. The functionality to track your P90X3 workouts will be available soon for the iPhone App.
Is there a vegan meal plan option available for P90X3?
There will be vegan options included in the new P90X3 Nutrition Guide that will be available on December 10, 2013.
For tips and ideas on how to modify the P90X3 meal plan to be more vegan friendly, we encourage customers to post the topic on the Team Beachbody message boards ( We have dietary experts that monitor the posts and provide some great ideas and direction.
How long does it take to complete P90X3?
P90X3 is a 90 day program, split into 3 Blocks. Blocks 1 & 2 each consist of 4 weeks, while Block 3 lasts 5 weeks.
Additionally, the Elite Block calendar, which is an optional block to be completed AFTER the initial 90 days, lasts 4 weeks.
The Elite Block includes 3 workouts not included within the P90X3 Base Kit. These workouts and calendar can be found within the P90X3 Deluxe and Ultimate Kits. In addition, they can also be purchased separately.
How long are the workouts for P90X3?
All P90X3 workouts are 30 minutes. The lone exception is the X3 Ab Ripper workout (15 minutes), included within the Deluxe Kit. Most workouts include a 2-3 minute cool down period.

What is included in P90X3?
Exclusive hat and bonus workout, only through your coach!
P90X3 Base Kit Includes:
  • 16 unique and brand new workouts on 8 DVDs
  • Plus, 5 Free Gifts
  • Fitness Guide
  • Nutrition Guide
  • 90 Day Workout Calendar
  • How to Accelerate Intro DVD
  • 24/7 Online Support
  • Network Exclusive P90X One on One: On One Leg DVD
  • Network Exclusive Premium P90X3 Hat ($24.95 value) - December Only!

What is the best deal on P90X3?
Hands down, your best deal will be the Challenge Pack.  You get the program (including bonuses and the free hat), the VIP membership that includes meal planning tools on the site, and you get Shakeology for only $60 extra!  Nutrition is SO important - it gives you 80% of your results!  So give yourself what you need to be successful.  You also get $2 shipping on this, so you save even more money.

P90X3 Challenge Pack
Retail Price: $205 (December Promotional Price: $180)
  • P90X3 Base Kit
  • 30-Day Supply of Shakeology HD
  • 30-Day VIP Team Beachbody Club Membership

Other options besides the Base Kit and Challenge Pack:
P90X3 Deluxe Kit
Includes everything in the Base Kit PLUS:
  • 3 Elite Extreme workouts on 1 DVD
  • Includes free Elite Block Calendar
  • 1-Month E&E Tub
  • 3 B-Lines Resistance Bands

P90X3 Ultimate Kit
Includes everything in the Base & Deluxe Kits PLUS:
  • 1-Month R&R Tub
  • Gym-Quality P90X® Chin-Up Bar
  • P90X® Chin-Up Max
  • Premium Beachbody Jump Mat

What are the P90X3 workouts?

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Thursday, December 5, 2013

My Transformation With Beachbody (so far)!

I have been wanting to put something like this together for awhile.  I remember when I was starting out in fitness, really overweight, I used to be SO inspired by people's before and after pics and videos.  I would watch them every morning before I would work out, to give me that extra kick in the pants!  I took making this vid as a personal challenge that really shoved me out of my comfort zone.  In my undies on the internet, really now??  But I must.  :)  So here it is - I hope it inspires you and shows you that we all start somewhere!

You can join my free fitness group by making me your coach and messaging me on Facebook - easy!

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Get Fit, Give Back! Make a difference this month.

Of ALL the promotions Beachbody has run, this is my absolute FAVORITE. During this month of Thanksgiving, THIS is what it is all about:

Beachbody is working with a nonprofit organization called Feeding America and our corporate leadership has created an opportunity to give back through our “Give and Receive” November focus.

Here’s how it works:

(1) If you order a Challenge Pack in November, Beachbody will give $20 to Feeding America.

(2) If you order Shakeology on Home Direct (cancel anytime), Beachbody will give $10 to Feeding America.

How far does this donation go? Each $1 contributed will pay to distribute 9 meals to the needy - including kids and the elderly. So a single Challenge Pack will provide 180 meals!!!

What's in it for you besides the feel good of giving?

New & existing Customers and new Coaches who buy ANY Challenge Pack in the month of November will receive a $20 coupon to apply to a future purchase.

There is no limit to the amount Beachbody will donate and our CEO Carl Daikeler has promised a minimum of $250,000 with a goal of $500,000. If it's $1-$2 million...EVEN BETTER!

Let's make this Thanksgiving have REAL meaning for those less fortunate than us. The more support I have from my blog / Facebook family, the better, so all Likes and Shares are appreciated! Let's spread the word!!!

If you are interested in getting started with a Challenge Pack, here is a direct link - or contact me so we can chat about YOUR goals!

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

The 21 Day FIX - a NEW program from Team Beachbody!

Now there's a program that makes losing weight so simple and easy to follow, you'll never have to diet again! Introducing 21 Day Fix, the latest breakthrough from Team Beachbody®.

What is 21 Day Fix?

The 21 Day Fix program takes the guesswork out of weight loss. It's a unique portion-control system combined with easy-to-follow workouts that fit into anyone's busy schedule. Trainer Autumn Calabrese shares her passion for food and fitness as she shows you how to make simple choices that add up to life-changing results.

Want to be the first to know when 21 Day Fix is available?

Sign up below and be the first to know when 21 Day Fix is here. Demand for this revolutionary system is expected to be sky-high, so sign up now!  Can you say, "Challenge Group"??  We will be doing this!!

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Who is Autumn Calabrese?

Autumn Calabrese is a celebrity fitness trainer and national-level bikini competitor. A rising star in the fitness community, she's made a name for herself by helping people lose weight and get fit through simple portion control and consistent exercise.
Autumn holds personal training certificates from the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) and the American Fitness Professionals & Associates (AFPA). Her supportive, motivating style has made her a highly sought-after expert among celebrities and the fitness industry.
Building on a foundation of good food choices and exercise habits, Autumn empowers her clients to reach their goals in a healthy, sustainable way. In addition to her celebrity clientele, Autumn is the fitness specialist for Her workouts have been featured in Cmagazine, LA Parent, The Palisadian-Post, and Daily Candy, and on TV shows like Home & Family. With a passionate, entrepreneurial spirit, Autumn is the perfect addition to the Team Beachbody family of trainers.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Be a Coach On My Team!

Becoming a Team Beachbody coach can literally change your life - I am proof!  Here is a little bit about what we do!

Ok, I am ready!  What is the cost for becoming a coach?  How do I sign up?

The start up fee is usually $39.95, a smaller fee than most companies will require, and well worth it!  I made up this fee easily in my first check from Beachbody.  :)  There are several ways to join for FREE however - I can tell you how!

To sign up as a coach on my team, please contact me or find me on Facebook so I can make sure you know the various sign up options, and we can choose one that helps fit your needs the best.  I can't wait to chat with you!  If you are SURE you're ready, apply below!

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