Fitness, Health, Wellness & Beauty, Tone It Up

Tone It Up Summer Series Review

Hi Girls! Last week the Tone It Up Summer Series ended. During the previous six weeks I stuck the nutrition plan and did the studio Tone It Up workouts. Here’s a review of the series and my before and after.

THE FOOD

Losing weight starts in the kitchen. Seriously. It’s all what you eat. I know that it sucks to hear that, because I love food, but I can honestly say that I lost over 15 pounds by just eating healthier. (I wasn’t great about following the workouts, but more on that later.) When you sign up for the summer series, you get an email with a few healthy recipes, but I found most of my recipes in the Tone It Up nutrition plan.

LEAN, CLEAN and GREEN

Foods that you should expect to eat during the Summer Series are all supposed to be lean, clean and green. No additives, no junk food and very little fat. Some of my favorite recipes are:
COCONUT KALE BEAUTY SMOOTHIE for a quick and easy breakfast!

TURKEY MEATBALLS with ZUCCHINI NOODLES is an awesome and easy dinner that can double as lunch the next day!!!

My favorite snacks are hard boiled eggs, protein bars, almonds with Craisins and even apples with natural peanut butter.

Tone It Up has a nutrition plan you can buy. The plan is filled with nutrition tips and healthy recipes. I followed the plan about 80% of the time.

THE WORKOUTS

The workouts were AMAZING. Everyday there is a 20 to 30 minute workout to do. It’s quick and targeted so that each day you workout one muscle group. I looked forward to the daily workouts and enjoyed several of them. Unfortunately, you need to purchase the Studio Tone It Up app in over to get the workouts. It’s like the Netflix of workouts, hundreds of workouts available at any time. The cost is $12.99 per month or you can save a little money and pay for the entire year upfront.

MY EXPERIENCE

Overall, I enjoyed the Summeri Series. I love the online community on Instagram and felt both encouraged and inspired by the entire Tone It Up team. Checking in on Instagram helped hold me accountable, my Instagram username is Megan Motivates.

The food I ate was mostly part of the “Tone It Up Nutrition Plan,” and followed the same guidelines as the plan (lean, clean, green) and I never felt hungry or deprived. I drank alcohol, ate chocolate and pizza, and even had a piece of birthday cake. After eating clean for so long, I didn’t crave those bad foods and actually felt a little sick when I did indulge. I will definitely continue to eat this way, although I will probably start to eat larger portions when I reach my goal weight. (Still have 10 more pounds to go!)

I have been doing the the workouts daily and also have been doing Lauren Gleasberg’s 3.0 home workout plan 5 x per week.. I learned that I REALLY enjoy weight lifting and so I plan to continue weight liftings while working in some chosen Tone It Up daily.

BEFORE and AFTER

Overall I lost 6 pounds during the Summer Series. I notice it most in my stomach. Here are my before and after picture.

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Beachbody, Fitness, Health, Wellness & Beauty

Workouts On Demand

When someone mentions Beachbody, whether you’re familiar with the workouts or not, you probably think of P90X, Tony Horton, and maybe Insanity with Shaun T.

You also might think of using a DVD player to watch these workouts.

That is sooooo 2008.

In 2015 with a great, forward-thinking move for the company, Beachbody officially joined the video streaming world.  Seeing the societal shift towards streaming technology like the Amazon Fire Stick, Google Chromecast, Roku, and our smartphones, they decided to ditch the DVD’s and allow people access to their popular workouts via smart technology.  They still produce and sell the DVD’s that made the company so popular in the home fitness market, but now offer streaming workouts in addition to the DVD’s and let me tell you it’s like the Netflix of fitness.

The streaming techonology allows customers access to over 700 workouts, including the entire library of Beachbody workouts while the company enjoys your payment on an annual basis rather than once every few years with a DVD workout. Win-win for everyone.

WHAT IT GIVES YOU

Like I stated before, Beachbody On Demand is a streaming workout video service.  It gives you access to over 700 workouts produced by Beachbody.  You get access to popular programs like these…

  • P90X
  • Insanity
  • P90X 2
  • P90X 3
  • Piyo
  • T25
  • 21 Day Fix

And many, many more.  In addition to these and several other workouts, you’ll get access to Beachbody’s expert trainers.  Including Tony Horton, ShaunT, Chalene Johnson, Autumn Calabrese, and many others.

You can access the workouts with any streaming device: the Fire Stick, Chromecast, Roku, or any streaming device, including your iPad, tablet, and computer. I currently use a Roku TV to stream my workouts.

There is a Beachbody On Demand app that makes access to the workouts really easy.  They put a lot of thought into the app and have convenient navigation features that make it super easy and fun to use.

For example…when you open the app on your phone you immediately see two things.  First is a personalized welcome message telling you to get back to the workout you most recently finished.  And second, is a number that tells you how many other Beachbody On Demand subscribers are currently using the app to workout.  A cool feature that tells me that I’m not the only one languishing through a workout at 5 AM.

As you scroll down through the app you’ll see “Recently Watched” workouts, then the complete library of workouts which I think is organized by their current, most popular programs.Finally you reach the workouts organized by trainer where you can choose your workout based on your favorite Beachbody fitness personality.  Similar to the workout programs, I think this is organized by popularity.

One more nice feature of the app is that you can stream the workouts or download.  If you download the workouts they are saved within the app and available with easy access at any time.  This is a nice feature because my internet connection isn’t the greatest in my basement home gym, so the streaming tends to buffer.  If I download a workout I don’t have this problem.

If you like to monitor your heart rate while exercising, the BBOD even has an option to sync each workout to your heart rate monitor or fitness tracker.  You can sync the workouts to your Apple Watch or Wahoo Tickr X heart rate monitor.  I personally don’t use heart rate monitors so I  can’t tell you how well this works, but it is a nice additional feature.

THE EXTRAS

For each of the workout programs you’ll get access to the workout calendars, fitness guides, nutrition plans, and progress trackers.  Basically everything that comes with the DVD’s, you’ll be able to download immediately for quick and convenient access.

THE PRICE

For access to this service you have a few options.

  • One time payment of $99 ($8.25/month), with a 30 day risk free trial
  • 2 payments a year of $59 ($9.84/month), with a 30 day risk free trial
  • 4 payments a year of $39 ($13/month), with the first 14 days free


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Cancer, Fitness, Lifestyle

Cycle For Survival

Cycle for Survival

This is my second year participating in Cycle for Survival and I think each year it gets better and better. I was actually signed up to participate last year, however; I was too sick to attend.

This year my team raised over $5,000 for Neuroblastoma (the cancer I have) and we had a team of 12 riders. This year I was also asked to be one of the speakers so it was a really special year for me.

We were signed up at the Bond Street location in the City so my brother, sister and brother’s girlfriend and I all drove into the city. I was signed up to be the second rider and had a blast signing and riding to the music. The day is an amazing day, filled with inspiration, hope, love and excitement. The energy is just so high. Here I am cycling to “I’m a Surviver” the perfect song.

https://youtu.be/QwcRH-WMPE8


I was the final speaker so I was able to tell everyone a little about my story and then announce the total amount raised. Here is my speech.

https://youtu.be/lQHlWDKBh54

After the event we all went to lunch at Frank and it was delicious . I swear we were all starving. We even stopped for Friendly’s Ice Cream on the way home.

I was exhausted by 8:39pm and passed out.

Workouts

On Saturday I rode the bike for an hour during the Cycle for Survival event. It was so much fun, and I burned a ton of calories. I forgot my apple watch. 🙁

Since I didn’t do Transformation:20 on Saturday I did it yesterday. The workout was all about finding you balance and it was really nice to stretch. It was defiantly much easier than all the previous workouts.

I also took the 12pm studio Tone It Up class. I wish TIU would make the classes every 30 minutes rather than every 60. Sometimes it works better with my schedule to take them on the half an hour mark.

Today is week 2 of Transformation: 20. I started week 2 with Burn and boy were my legs burning. I fall in love with with this program with each workout. It’s truly a life changing program. I feel so good after each workout.

What’s Going On

I finally bit the bullet and joined Weight Watchers. I started today and have been counting my points. If anyone has any good recipes please share. I am so excited to see my progress and stick to the program. I did it in High School and had a to of success with it.

I have a busy day ahead of me. I have to return my Pelaton, CBC and I have to go to the dentist all before 1pm so my morning is jam packed and then I have nothing to do in the afternoon.

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Beachbody, Fitness, Lifestyle

It’s Thursday

Hi Friends!

Lifestyle

Happy Thursday! Yesterday I decided to wear my heart on my sleeves and wore my heart sweater for Valentine’s Day! This week has been filled with lots of errands, although I squeezed in a little shopping today! 😉 I bought a cute pair of Free People Jeans and some sweaters from Old Navy.

Workout

I started Transform: 20 on Monday and I’ve been loving it. It’s seriously pushed me harder than any workout has in a long time. I feel like I am back in high school playing sports. Here I am after today’s workout.

I took my measurements over the weekend: right arm: 23 inches | left arm: 25 inches | Waist: 32 inches | Right Thigh: 52.2 inches | Left Thigh: 52 inches

I also took a barre class yesterday and did yoga this morning as well. We focused on stretching our handsprings in yoga and it was exactly what I needed. I know I have talked about it before on here but they are just so tight after I broke my hip. When I bend over I don’t come close to the floor but finally today I was able to touch the floor with bent knees. Progress! Yay! I have already noticed a big difference in my flexibility and can’t wait to see how much more flexible I become with each week. I think adding in barre twice a week also helps with my flexibility.

Have a great day!

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Fitness, Lifestyle

Why I Returned My Pelaton

I made a huge decision last week, I returned my new Peloton bike.

I’ll explain why here. In July of this past year I broke my hip and had a complete hip replacement. So yes, I have a titanium hip. I got clearance to work out again in September so I immediately started doing the studio Tone It Up workouts. By the time we hit December I was growing a little bored with the workouts and wanted to add some cardio to my routine. Peloton was running a promotion so I jumped on without really thinking about it and purchased my new Peloton bike. Prior to getting diagnosed with the cancer I enjoyed spinning so I thought it was a perfect option.

After my bike was delivered I immediately starting taking the Peloton live classes and getting comfortable with my bike.

I was so excited and wanted to love the classes but my heart was never into them. I began to dread taking the classes but because I was paying for it I forced myself to like it. After taking the classes for a few weeks my hip starts to hurt every time I take a class and now I really was dreading my Peloton classes. Not only was my heart not into it my hip was hurting more and more.

In January I started to take barre classes again at Barre Method and fall in love with barre all over again. I use to love barre before I got sick. I also bought  the Beachbody Transform: 20 program, which I’m starting today.

I face the facts: I hate taking the Peloton classes, I like the studio Tone It Up classes, I love the Barre Method classes, I’m starting transform: 20. It became very clear to me it was time to return the Peloton and I would continue to do the studio workouts, barre classes and begin the Transform: 20.

I had my first Tranform:20 class today and it was really tough. It’s been a while since I have sweat that much and found it that hard to breath. I am looking forward to the next six weeks and seeing the changes in my body and fitness level. 

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Cancer, Fitness, Health, Wellness & Beauty, Lifestyle

Never Giving Up

As many of you know I broke my hip in July and had a complete hip replacement. From the moment I broke my hip I promised myself I would not let this stop me from doing what I love, working out. After my surgery the surgeon told me I can leave the hospital when I can climb stairs without a walker. Well the day after my surgery I was not only climbing stairs without my walker I was walking as well. But let me tell you my hips were tight. I mean really tight like can’t even bend over to pick up a piece of paper tight.

Fast forward to September I was back doing my studio Tone It Up workouts and looking for more. I began taking yoga class once a week and started to gain some flexibility back. Then in December I purchased my Pelaton bike, and just this week I took my first barre class in over two years. It felt so good to be back.

And guess what? I can pick up a piece of paper. In fact, when I bend over I can almost touch the ground. You see, I wasn’t going to let this injury stop me from doing what I love. Just like I am not going to let the cancer stop me from living my life. I will never stop fighting because life is too precious to give up hope. So next time you say I can’t, change that can’t into can and you will!

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Fitness, Lifestyle

My Weekend

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was really nice. Friday night my parents, Mike and I went to a local restaurant. I got really delicious steak tacos. Then Saturday I woke up and did a 30 minute HIIT peloton ride followed by the studio Tone It Up workout and the daily moves.

The studio workout was not for me, since I broke my hip in July my left side is really tight and I have a lot of trouble touching the ground. The workout involved a lot of touching the ground and I found myself really frustrated. I know I shouldn’t be frustrated with my body because it’s been through so much and it’s still strong, however; sometimes I wish I had the same flexibility I had prior to breaking my hip.

Sunday was an active recovery day for me so I did a Peloton yoga class. This was my first time doing a peloton class and I really enjoyed it. I think I will start incorporating those workouts into my schedule.

Today I am heading to a barre class for the first time in a year. When I lived in Hoboken I did barre all the time and I really miss it. I found a local barre studio and signed up for a class this morning. Hopefully I like the studio and can go more often.

The goal is barre 2 X per week. Yoga 1 X per week. Pelaton 3 X per week. Studio Tone It Up workouts 3 X per week. Daily Moves 5 X per week.

Here’s my workout schedule for this week:

  • Monday: Barre, Daily Moves

  • Tuesday: Pelaton, Studio, Daily Moves

  • Wednesday: Pelaton, Studio, Daily Moves

  • Thursday: Yoga, Daily Moves

  • Friday: Barre, Daily Moves

  • Saturday: Pelaton, Studio, Daily Moves

  • Sunday: Rest

This is week 2 of the Tone It Up Love Your Body challenge and we are talking about something you love about your body, I chose my arms. I love my arms because they have never given up on me. Even when I was at my sickest or when I broke my hip my arms always stayed strong and helped me when I only had one working leg. They literally served as my second leg. My arms were the first part of my body that the cancer started to go away on. My arms helped me get in and out of bed when I couldn’t get up and helped me get up from sitting when I struggled to stand. They are strong and I am grateful they never let me down.


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Fitness, Lifestyle

Tone It Up 5 Day Detox Results

As I mentioned Last week I did the Tone It Up 5 day detox and here are my results:

Pounds lost: 4

I don’t know about you all but I can definitely see a difference.

By the end of the detox I overall just felt better.During the detox I had more energy and my body recovered from my workouts faster.

Also, this might sound silly but I was in a better mood.

I will definitely be doing the detox again! It’s amazing how 5 days of eating lean, clean & green can have such a big impact on your body.

Guess what started today? The Tone It Up Love Your Body challenge. This will be my first challenge post cancer treatment and I cannot think of a better challenge than love your body. This challenge is all about loving you, your body, all while challenging it.

I took my before pictures today and let’s just say I was not pleased. I think I had a little too many cookies over the holidays. Love your body could not come at a better time because I’m ready!

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Fitness, Lifestyle

Day 4 of the 5 Day Detox

Happy Friday! We made it. I know I mentioned this on Instagram but I have been feeling really great this week. My energy is up, my body feels good (usually my bones hurt because of the cancer and hip replacement), and I’ve been in the best mood. I feel so happy and content right now in life! It’s funny because a year ago I was in the hospital not knowing whether I was going to make it. I had just gone on hospice and was literally writing a will. I thought this was it. Thank goodness for this trial drug I am on because I’ve done a 180. It’s a really great feeling! I think the detox has something to do with it me feeling so well this week.. If you want to try Tone It Up, the five day detox is free. You can click here to sign up. All of this just makes me more excited for the Tone It Up Love Your Body challenge. This will be my first challenge since signing up for Tone It Up in 2013. Before this I didn’t have much interest in the challenges because I did so well on the regular plan. Also, this is in no way sponsored I just love Tone It Up because it helped me loose 30 poun, keep it off and be in the best shape of my life.

Today is day 4 of the Tone It Up 5 day detox. With the exception of lunch yesterday I have not felt hungry at all. I have had enough energy to workout and have been getting a solid 8 hours of sleep every night. This afternoon I am going to take a peloton class, then do the studio Tone It Up workout and daily moves. I’ve been adding stretching daily (30 day to split challenge + additional stretches) and it’s felt really good on my body. Have you ever seen this torture device?

This is what I use to help me stretch. I’m especially tight since I broke my hip and had a complete hip replacement in July.

This is the first time I am wearing this sweater and I am glad I picked it up. It’s really soft and is a great transition into spring piece. Also, it’s on major sale right now. Under $20!

You can shop my look by clicking on the images below or going to the shop -> shop my instagram tab up top.

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Cancer, Fitness, Lifestyle

Cycle For Survival

As many of you know I have been fighting Neuroblastoma (a rare pediatric cancer few adults to get) since 2015. Thanks so the amazing doctors and research at Sloan Kettering I am able to particpate in Cycle for Survival this year after not being able to partiicpate last year because I was to sick. If it wasn’t for the amazing staff, doctors, nurses, staff and researchers I would not be alive today. One of the many reasons I love Cycle is the money goes directly to Nueroblastoma research. Last year I participated in one of the research trial therapy (3F8).

Will you join me by making a donation? Your gift will directly help people like me who have few, if any, treatment options. Through Cycle for Survival, progress is accelerating. We arm scientists with the resources to explore pioneering ideas, discover new therapies, and collaborate to find the next breakthrough.

If you would like to make a donation, it would be greatly appreciated! You can click click here to donate.

Thanks in advance!

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