I have a confession. I didn’t finish my Insanity Max:30. Two weeks in, I stopped the workouts.
To do 21 Day Fix Extreme, of course!
I started Insanity Max:30 a few weeks ago, but took a quick break to squeeze in a round of the latest and greatest from Beachbody, the 21 Day Fix Extreme (21DFX). I decided to take a break for basically one reason. QUICK RESULTS. I know that Insanity Max:30 will yield epic results, and I’m more than willing to put in the time, but I know that if I hyper focus on nutrition and complete the workouts from 21DFX I can jump start my summer goals. I’m not going to lie, I originally thought “Really, Beachbody…ANOTHER 21 Day Fix? What could be different? Give me a break!” Then, I saw the test group results online. The results from the 21DFX test group are exactly what I’m looking for. It is not a program for beginners, as it helps take those already on a fitness journey to the next level by prescribing nutrition at a detailed level. Of course, I bought it on the day it was released as I ran through all the reasons in my head that this was a totally acceptable action, even though I was only TWO WEEKS into Insanity Max:30. “Annie, you can kick start your results! Look at the abs on her! Three weeks of nutrition will be done just in time for Beergaritas on the porch!” So naturally, credit card in hand, I logged on to Team Beachbody.
First, let’s talk about the nutrition guide.
If you are familiar with the original 21 Day Fix, this program is based on the same concept of calculating your caloric needs and eating the appropriate number of servings of food to satisfy those needs throughout the day. The servings are broken into nutrient groups (protein, carbohydrates, fats) and you measure them in containers that come with the program. The original 21 Day Fix does an amazing job of balancing your nutrition and teaching you about portion size. It is everything for your success. EVERYTHING.
This new program does the same, as well as offers a more focused nutrition plan called “Countdown to Competition.” It is based on the carb depletion method and is the same program that the 21 Day Fix trainer, Autumn Calabrese, follows when she is preparing for a bikini competition. And she’s unbelievable.
You can select if you want to follow the original nutrition plan or go balls to the wall and do the Countdown to Competition. I love a good mental challenge as much as I love food, so I am going for the Countdown to Competition plan. It is definitely not EASY but I am already seeing results and I’m only 7 days in. Which makes days 8-21 pretty freakin’ exciting if you ask me. Really though, the nutrition plan is what makes this program so epic. The Countdown plan is extreme and is not for every day eating, but if you do what it says, exactly as it says, get ready for results. PS) Beer, I miss you.
Learning to dig egg whites since this plan requires SO MUCH protein.
Also, I have a mega sweet tooth, so hot tea is my go to so I don’t cave and nom ALL THE CHOCOLATE.
On to the workouts!
They didn’t call it Extreme just to get you to buy another version of the original 21 Day Fix. It is legit extreme. I haven’t been able to walk up stairs for the past seven days without remembering my dear trainer, Autumn. These are definitely “extreme” workouts and I totally appreciate that. Coming off Insanity Max:30, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but these 30 minute sets deliver. I did love the original 21 Day Fix, but the workouts were kind of middle of the road, some harder than others but none left me maxed out. Not so much the case with Extreme.
There are seven workouts in the base kit, and an extra ab workout as well. You simply do one workout a day (no doubles on this calendar, they are hard enough) and repeat each week. The best part about this is week 1 you think “Omg I never want to do that again.” Week 2 you think, “Omg I only have to do that one more time” and Week 3 you’re all “HEYYY last time!” 21 days is the perfect amount of time to be able to really push yourself, both physically and mentally. Here are some quick facts about the workouts, as well as my opinion on the pros and cons of each.
PLYO FIX EXTREME
“Now’s your chance to change your life.”
This workout is 5 rounds, 2 exercises each round @ 30 seconds each. She gives you a 30 second break between moves, and your poor quads and hammies are going to need it. I used ten lbs as my heavy and 5 lbs as my light weight.
Moves in this workout include:
- Squat jump & split lunge jump (Autumn busts out her heavy weights for all of these, but I was busy channeling my inner T Swift and shaking it off.)
- Single leg squat jump & Sumo squat jump (That’s a lot of squatting and your butt will let you know.)
- Squat hop & Burpee tuck jump (This round feels a bit like Insanity, in a bent over gasping for air kind of way.)
- Twisted skaters & Calf jump (Twisted skaters, will you marry me?)
- Squat thrusts & Sumo squat hop (Sneaky Ab workout, where did you come from?)
- BONUS MOVE (Of course….finish strong!!! Or just try to finish….)
Overall, this workout is one of my favorites in a love to hate it kind of way. I do not look forward to Plyo. Plyo is real work and I definitely have room to improve, but isn’t that why we workout in the first place? Find the moves that you hate, and do them the most. You hate them for a reason, because they are hard! Don’t avoid the hard stuff, dig in and train through it.
Hello, old friend. Let’s get reacquainted.
UPPER FIX EXTREME
“Build a body you can be proud of.”
This workout is 3 rounds, 4 exercises each round @30 seconds, then modified for another 30 seconds for a drop set effect. The resistance band makes an appearance during this workout, which doesn’t come included in the base kit. I think this is silly. The program is billed as a graduate program of the 21 Day Fix, but you can’t buy it without the containers/shaker cup. Should probably include the band instead of containers, but I digress. Either way, you can use the band from T25 or any band that meets your resistance needs. I used 15 lbs as my heavy and 5 lbs as my light weight.
Moves in this workout include:
- Push up, wide grip row, chest fly, lat band pull (Half pushups, why are you harder than WHOLE pushups?!)
- Military press, twisted abs, post delt fly, dolphins (Dophins, me and you ALLLLL DAY. I love ya.)
- Hammer curl, tricep dip, isolated curl, kickbacks (Tricep dip is haunting me in every program I do. I guess I should master them soon?)
I thought it was a well-rounded upper body workout, even included some abs. I like the moves with the resistance band better than any band moves I’ve done before. Autumn hits your back, chest, bis, tris and abs. I didn’t get super sore from this workout, so I could probably up my weights next round.
My dog thinks accountability pictures are lame. She much prefers rubber duckies and garbage breath. Haters gonna hate.
PILATES FIX EXTREME
“Train with a purpose, eat with a plan.”
The only other Pilates experience I have is with the original 21DF pilates workout, so I don’t have much point of reference, but I really enjoyed this workout. It is challenging in a different way than the balls to the wall, bent over catching your breath cardio. I might be crazy, but I’m pretty sure you can feel your shoulders becoming awesome during this workout. You should try it. The 30 minutes of Pilates is much like the last workout, but you spend the whole time with the resistance band. Some of my favorite moves include:
- Heel curve
- Abductor lift
- The EPIC bird dog press
Your butt will feel miserable, but look perky, trust me. This would be a great day to add in the Challenge disc that comes extra when you purchase from Team Beachbody (if you’re not buying from Team Beachbody, you should be. They always give you extra workouts!) because it is not a super intense workout, but also isn’t really a rest day & the challenge is not extremely intense either.
You little rascal, you.
LOWER FIX EXTREME
“It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.”
This workout is
4 rounds, 2 exercises each with a repeat, of course. After Plyo earlier, in the week, this workout can prove to be challenging, but I think it is a sum of the whole plan that makes it so. The 21DFX workouts are intense on the legs, and it is wonderful. Some of the highlights of this workout include:
- Squat jump (Standard, but good)
- Lunge kick (Harder than it sounds, coordination required!)
- Single leg squat (Deep in the booty so the stairs are your enemy)
- Side lunge (This is the move I’d marry from this workout. So effective on the outer thigh)
- Sumo jump (Ew. Just Ew.)
- Band heel press (The band is back to punish you some more)
- Lat band walk (This one is legit awful if you do it right. You look like a puppet and feel like a tin man. Enjoy.)
Not my favorite workout of the group, I prefer the Plyo workout for legs, but still a good one! I miss the last leg sequence on the floor from the original 21DF, it is one of my favorites of all time. Either way, don’t worry, your legs are not getting off the hook ANY day of the week.
CARDIO FIX EXTREME
“Replace excuses with effort”
Before we get into it, can we just talk about THAT tip of the day for a minute? I can’t get enough. Not just in fitness but in life. What if we stopped making excuses and just TRIED A LITTLE HARDER? Where would YOU be?
Anywho, this workout is 4 rounds, 2 exercises for one minute each round, then 30 seconds of fairly basic cardio and it looks a little something like this:
- High low squat, Plank kicks, 30 seconds Run in place (Not too bad, Plank kicks are a nice addition)
- Jack press jump, Back lunge kick, 30 seconds High knees (Back lunge kick is fantastic and horrible all at once)
- Sumo squat curl, Fast feet, 30 seconds Jumping jacks (Heyyy fast feet, are you over yet?)
- Clean lunge jump, Shuffle burpee, 30 seconds Twisted skater (Best. Round. Ever.)
This is one of my favorites of the program. I love weighted cardio and this workout seems to fly by. It works every muscle group and gets your heart rate sky high.
*NOTE: This is also my dog’s favorite workout of the program as it provides plenty of sweat for licking. Yes, her vote counts.
DIRTY THIRTY EXTREME
“You don’t stop when you’re tired; you stop when you’re done.”
If you can’t tell, she is implying you aren’t done just because you’re tired. You’re done when Autumn says so. Boom. But she says so in about 30 minutes so be real, you’ve got this.
Dirty Thirty! My favorite workout from original 21DF is just as good this time around! Full body, high heart rate, kick some butt. This workout is 3 rounds, 2 exercises for one minute each, with the standard repeat.
Look for some new moves in this workout:
- Half moon curtsy (Favorite new move. Shoulders, you are beautiful.)
- Squat press (Oh, wait, beautiful shoulders…this burns. Carry on.)
- Push up row (Standard but hey, if it ain’t broke….)
- Sword pull lunge (SO MUCH YASSSSS.)
- Squat row (Sounds easy, need balance!)
- Lunge row curl (Reminds me of P90X3, which makes me miss Tony, which makes me miss laughing during my workouts…Oh Tony.)
If you miss a day, don’t miss this one. Lots of bang for your buck, will definitely be a go to in my library.
“You get back what you put in.”
In other words, don’t skip this. I am not quiet about my desire to do yoga but my hatred for doing it. I understand the benefits, I admire the ability…but I get so. incredibly. BORED. Regardless, I stuck this one out and it was above my skill level for sure, but had some really amazing moves, including:
- Humble warrior
- Fflip the dog (PiYo Flip anyone? Yay.)
- The whole balance series
- Crow (Caused immediate drop in self esteem, but I managed to get through by watching the advanced dude KILL his headstand. Seriously AWESOME.)
This is a decent yoga DVD to improve your skill set. It is above beginner but certainly not as crazy as Yoga gets. I would recommend doing the workout now and again after the program as part of your overall fitness. (NOTE TO SELF: I RECOMMEND DOING THE WORKOUT. DO IT.)
10 MINUTE HARDCORE
“Challenge your limits”
This workout is ten moves for a minute each, where some are 30 seconds and you switch sides. Exercises include:
- Weighted crunch
- Knee drops
- Roman twists
- Hip drops
- Arm rotations
I can’t lie ya’ll, this is not my favorite. The crazy fast abs from original 21DF are better than this in my opinion. It is definitely more of a CORE workout than strictly abs. It doesn’t appear on the calendar, so you’re in luck if you don’t like it. However, I DO like abs, so I’ve been supplementing with the abs from Max30 and TurboFire. Meh, take it or leave it.
So, there you have it…week one impressions of 21DFX. Hope that helps you get an idea of if it is the right program for you! I recommend either the original 21DF or this extreme version as a great set to have in your fitness library. Lots of specific as well as well-rounded workouts. They are pretty cut and dry, so if you prefer more of an entertaining workout (TurboFire or Zumba for example), you may not enjoy the flow of these as much. I love lifting and structured workouts, so these are perfect for me. I cannot wait to make my results post (partly because I can’t wait to share the results, and partly because that means I’ll be enjoying a beer. Just saying).
Feel free to shoot me a note if you want to chat about this or any other Beachbody program I’ve posted about. Thanks so much for stopping by….now go workout!