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Monday, May 13, 2013

Jillian Michaels: Maximize Your Life Tour

My best friend, Jen, is the most giving person I know. When we found out that Jillian was coming to Kansas City, I expressed that I wanted to go, but would not because of money. (We all have to make these choices.) A couple of weeks later, Jen surprised me with a ticket to go see her show!!

Me & Jen

I will share some of Jillian's talking points with you, but first I will explain what I take away from the experience. So, I just came off of a successful 4 month endeavor to lose weight and get in shape. Okay, fine. I expected this presentation to be geared more toward motivating people who had 50+ pounds to lose. I was hoping for some interesting workout ideas at least. I also just wanted to hear her speak because I've seen her on TV and I respect her own weight loss issues and I respect her no-bullshit approach to fitness. However, this presentation ended up being perfect for me.  I feel like 10 years of reading about fitness, watching TV about fitness, talking to others about fitness, following tweets about fitness, watching documentaries about fitness, etc. all came together last night.

As I write this blog, I don't know where I get my knowledge. It's hard to pinpoint exactly where I learned that processed food is bad. It's hard to pinpoint exactly where I learned that artificial sweetener is poison. I've probably done what all of you have done. I've watched an episode or two of Dr. Oz. I've watched an episode or two of Biggest Loser. I've watched a segment on the Today Show about losing weight. I've listened to Elisabeth Hasselbeck from The View talk about how when she was on Survivor she felt better than ever because she was eating natural food. I've read Skinnygirl by Bethenny Frankel. I've read Eat This, Not That books.  I have been reading, listening, and observing for YEARS.  I have been putting my random knowledge into action for the last 4 months, but I couldn't tell you where I learned it.  That's why when I tell others that eating "clean" is crucial, I feel like a non-credible source because I can't fully explain it and then cite my source.  So, for whatever reason, I now know to eat clean. I now know how to prioritize it financially. I now know how to stand firm in social eating situations. I now know how to make time and energy for working out. I'M FINALLY DOING IT! And when Jillian Michaels stands up on that stage and gives a no-bullshit chat about what you should put in your mouth and why working out is important, I feel more validated than ever. What I'm doing is a LIFESTYLE.

I could have easily been sitting in that chair weighing in at 175 pounds (or more) and wondering how in the f**k I'm going to rearrange how makes dinner at my house, how much money we spend on food, how to prepare my meals for a day of work/travel/play, how to find a way to work out and on and on and on.  Don't get me wrong, I'm glad I was sitting in that chair at 143, but if I was overweight like many people in that room last night, the takeaway would have been the same: eat clean, track what you eat, work out. And I will still be doing those things even though I have met my goal.  I needed to hear the same thing as the 200 pound woman on my right. I needed to hear the same thing as the 120 pound girl in front of me. We are all needed the same thing. The only difference is, the 200 pound person needs to go home and eat enough calories for weight loss.  The 120-pounder and I need to go home and eat enough calories for weight maintenance.  But we all need to go home and have the same LIFESTYLE.

As shown in my dinner post from yesterday, my mom, my sister, and I all packed our meals for the day. My mom is on FitOrbit meal plans. Christa has an upcoming Bikini Fitness competition. I am maintaining my 33-pound weight loss.  My mom took my by surprise when she asked, "Why did you pack all of your meals for today if you are done with FitOrbit?" I actually had to think. Why WAS I doing that? Did I have to? Did I want to? The answer is, I like knowing that I have food with me at all times. I never have to experience the extreme pangs of hunger while I wait for family or restaurants to arrange a meal. I never have to worry or make compromises about how natural (clean) my food is. I never have to guess how many calories I'm consuming. I've got it all controlled. And I will stay fit because of it. No guess work. No fingers crossed when I step on the scale. It's a lifestyle.  Will I pack my meals EVERY time I go to Kansas City? Nope. But I probably will 80% of the time. It's just what I do now.

Jillian Michaels, Midland Theater, Kansas City, MO

So, Jillian's three-hour presentation was in three parts: food, exercise, & motivation.  I'm going to run through this quickly. Think of this as a highlighter.

Look at labels. If you can't pronounce the ingredients, don't eat it (eating clean). Food companies are allowed to have 54 different names for sugar (glucose, dextrose, fructose) and they will use different names in order to be able to avoid "sugar" being the first ingredient listed. This is a trick. There is a butter spray product that has a label of 0 calories per serving (1.25 sprays). The bottle has 2,000 calories in it. Food companies are allowed to ROUND DOWN if a serving has less than a calorie. In this case, 1.25 sprays has 0.9 calories, so they round down.  Eat food as close to its natural state as possible at all times. Even if you are not dieting. For example, Jillian endorses Pop Chips (potato chips) and Unreal (a candy bar). She says these are not diet foods. We are talking about fat and sugar. HOWEVER, she endorses them because they are made with all natural ingredients.  If you cannot afford to eat organic, then prioritize. Eat the Clean 15 (see list) and avoid the Dirty Dozen (see list).  However, when she says "can not afford" she also talks about how you need $20 per week. Most people can come up with $20 per week if they make it a priority.
Buying the right food and putting it in your mouth is an investment in your health. I talked about this in my Eating Clean post. The first excuse you will hear is that it's too expensive to eat healthy. It's my blog, so I get to be frank. I think that's an excuse and it's bullshit.  Jillian does too. Validation.

Jillian begs us to eat organic meat & dairy. There are way to many hormones and antibiotics being fed to our meat sources (beef, chicken, fish).  She showed many pictures to illustrate and I agree with her because I watched a documentary, King Corn, a couple of weeks ago that demonstrated this. Trust me, the documentary and Jillian's words about meat will make you want to scrounge up an extra $20 per week. I would never want to put that poison into my body.  She summarized all of this food stuff by saying:

1) Don't eat poison.
2) Don't overeat.

Before she left food by explaining the BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). This is the rate of calories you burn if you just lie in bed all day. There is a formula, but you can Google it and you will find a website that will calculate it for you using your height, weight, etc.  Mine is 1,465 calories.  Then, you multiply that number by how active your lifestyle is: 1.1=sedentary; 1.2=on your feet; 1.3=physical; 1.4=hard labor.  I am a 1.2 on teaching days and umpiring days. I'm 1.1 on non-work days.  So, on working days I can consume 1,750 calories and not gain or lose weight. On non-working days, I can consume 1,600 calories and not gain or lose weight.  Then, consider going to the gym, going on a run, etc. If I teach all day and then burn 400 calories at the gym, I can consume 2,150 calories and not lose weight. Get it? I suggest you calculate. It's golden.  If you are trying to lose weight, consume about 1,200 calories and watch the weight fall off.

She also said there is no such thing as a plateau.  It's all about the composition of what you are eating (clean) and the amount of calories consumed. Interesting.

Do body weight training and free weights. If you don't like to do straight up cardio, then do your training/weights at your maximum heart rate. Do high intensity interval training (HIIT). She showed a very simple workout plan: Monday/Thursday "Push Circuit" (pushups, squats with shoulder press, jumping jacks, and bench tricep dips). Tuesday/Friday "Pull Circuit" (high knees, I forget all of this).

She talked a lot about moving your ass. Don't sit on a machine and think you are good. Move your ass and move it hard. You should feel like your chest will explode for about 30 minutes. Otherwise, you aren't working out hard enough.

I'm going to leave this one is list form as I took notes. I'm afraid that I will inject too much personal stuff into it and it will get really preachy up in here.  So, here are my jottings:
  • What is your "WHY?"
  • Stop worrying about everyone else's little shit and play your own game
  • Stop worrying about rules, obligations, judgments set by others
  • Don't put a toe in the pool of commitment. Commit "with every single cell in your body"
  • Why are people fat? Because they want to be. We don't make changes because we value other things more than the change. Behavioral patterns.
  • Willpower--think it through. Jillian still has to do this. She has to plan what she eats to avoid impulse


  1. First. I'm for sure jealous of you in a BIG way. And now I'm thinking about going out and buying every JM book out there. I've always wanted to, but never got around to it.

    2nd. I like the fact that you explained what you took from it, but also the main points. Really feels like I was there....or that I will definitely go sometime now.

    3rd. I think you should post about your motivation. I think you should be preachy! WhyTF not?!?! I love to hear about other people's inspirations or frustrations and how they relate to myself. I'd love to hear about yours! Basically, because I'm now your biggest fan and want to copy cat you.....stalkerish much??? naaaaa.

    Also, I was telling Ryan about you/this/etc last night and he was all, I'm fat. We need to change. And I agreed. I said it's going to be difficult because he eats a lot of processes stuff, but he said he's willing to try. So right after baby girl is born we're BOTH going to do fitorbit. And eat clean. Hardest part for us.....booze. Man I love me some beers.

    Please please PLEASE keep this going, because you are such an inspiration!

  2. Laura: buy the book Jillian Wrote- Slim For Life- all of this is explained extremely well in that book. I read it before last night, and could almost tell you what she would say before she said it.

  3. I am so jealous of you. I was jealous when I knew you were going and I'm even more jealous now that I know it was amazing. I also agree with Laura, put it all out there!

  4. Laura,
    Thanks so much for writing. I have always LOVED your blog. I remember Lindsey helped me find it and I spent hours and hours reading it. {Creepy?}

    I am almost done reading Slim for Life by Jillian. It's a good read, but there are so many tips in there that are overwhelming. Honestly, my favorite part is the chapter about food. She explains why you should eat clean. It's so important. There is a lot of simple science to back it up. Also, she talks about making plans to eat well and sticking to it. Such a good read. And it's the most important part of weight loss if you ask me.

    I have a motivation post all ready to go. It will publish at 10am tomorrow (May 16). I hope you like it because I really put it all out there!

    It's amazing how much the boys think about their weight too, eh? It's so much easier when the hubby is on board too.

    I'm glad you like the bloggy. I write it for me, but if others like it too it's a win-win!

  5. Jen,
    I'm doing it backwards, but it's true. Her presentation pretty much follows the book!

  6. Lindsey,
    I'm working at putting it all out there. It's just so personal! I have a post for tomorrow about motivation that is pretty personal... Enjoy!