Celebrity fitness trainer and national-level bikini competitor, Autumn Calabrese, recently launched Beachbody’s latest program, “21 Day Fix.” Building on a foundation of portion-controlled eating and healthy exercise habits, Autumn empowers people to reach their weight loss goals with “simple fitness and simple nutrition.”
The single mom opens up to Celebrity Baby Scoop about getting “fast results” with “21 Day Fix,” her best advice for busy moms who want a lifestyle change, and her 5-year-old son Dominic who loves to cook and exercise with mommy.
Q: Tell us all about your new Beachbody program, “21 Day Fix.” Tell us about the workouts, as well as the eating program with portion control containers.
A: “The ‘21 Day Fix’ is a two part system. It is simple fitness and simple nutrition. When you put them together, you get fast results.
“There are 7 workouts, one for each day of the week. They are 30 minutes each. There is something different every day to keep you interested and to keep your body from plateauing.
“These workouts are for everyone. You can be an athlete who workouts everyday or a person who has never worked out a day in their life — you will still benefit from these workouts. Each workout has a modifier, so if you are a beginner you start with them. You push yourself to your limit. Each exercise is 1 minute in length with a 20 second rest.
“When it comes to the nutrition plan for ‘21 Day Fix,’ I’ve taken the guesswork out of how to eat. There are seven color-coded containers that you will use to portion out your food. If it fits in the container, you can eat it — nothing is off limits. I’ve even left wine and chocolate in the program!
“You calculate a simple formula for yourself to tell you what calorie bucket to eat from. Once you have done that, you eat the number of containers in your list. There is green, purple, red, yellow, blue and orange and the teaspoon. For me I eat five green containers, three purple, four red, three yellow, one blue, one orange and four teaspoons a day. You will always feel full and satisfied because this is clean eating and portion control.”
Q: Congratulations on the huge success of “21 Day Fix” thus far! Why do you think this fitness program and eating plan has been such a hit?
A: “Thank you! I believe the ‘21 Day Fix’ has been so successful because it is so simple. Nutrition really is what people struggle with most, and I have made this plan foolproof. If you follow it, you are going to have amazing results.
“The ‘21 Day Fix’ is fast, fun and designed for everyone. The moves will challenge you, but they are not complicated and you take it at your own pace. When you combine simple fitness with simple nutrition, you have a recipe for success.”
Q: Have you ever had issues with portion control?
A: “I myself never have had issues with portion control, but my dad owned Italian restaurants most of my childhood so I grew up eating pizza, pasta and subs. When I started dancing competitively, I needed to make changes and better choices. I was 13 and it really sparked my interest seeing how my body changed when I cut out certain things like soda.”
Q: Tell us why ‘21 Day Fix’ is the perfect fit for busy moms. What is your best advice for busy moms who say they don’t have enough time for a regular workout program and/or a portion control eating plan?
A: “The ‘21 Day Fix’ is perfect for busy moms because it is so simple. There isn’t a lot of planning when it comes to the food. If it fits in the containers, you can eat it. The containers can be taken with you on the go and they are microwave and dishwasher safe.
“The workouts are fast — only 30 minutes long. Busy moms don’t have all day to workout. You have to get in, get it done, and get on with your day. That’s how ‘21 Day Fix’ is designed — fast and effective.
“My best advice for busy moms who say they don’t have time for a regular workout program is this: you have to take care of yourself to be the best mom that you can be. I understand we are all busy, but everyone has 30 minutes to work out and you will feel so much better because of it. Plan it in your schedule just like you plan activities for the kids or a work meeting. It takes 21 days to make a new habit. Once you have worked out consistently for a few weeks, you will wonder how you ever went without.
“My advice for busy moms who say they don’t have time for a portion control eating plan is this: look at the ‘21 Day Fix’ as a fun way to eat healthy that really doesn’t require extra work. You are going to make yourself food anyways, so it might as well be in the correct portion to keep you healthy and energized.”
Q: Tell us about your son. What is his name and age? We hear you are a single mom — how do you manage your busy career and motherhood?
A: “My son Dominic just turned 5. People ask me all the time how I manage 13-hour work days, and my workouts, and taking care of him — ummm I’m like Nike and I JUST DO IT! I don’t think about it, I just know what needs to be done each day and I go at it full force until it’s finished — even if that means I’m in my living room at 9:30 at night getting my workout in and then making my son’s lunch for the next day before I go to bed. If it’s important to you, you will find a way — if not you will find an excuse, it’s that simple.”
Q: How do you integrate your healthy lifestyle with your son? Are you strict about his eating choices? Does he enjoy exercising and staying active with mommy?
A: “I always bring my son into the kitchen with me when I’m cooking and teach him about what I am making. I explain to him that we eat fruits and veggies to make us strong, and that eggs and chicken give us strong muscles.
“He has seen me at work and seen me compete in my fitness competitions so he understands what mommy does. He loves to try to exercise with me. He cracks me up when he puts my tennis shoes on and says, ‘Bye mom, I’m going to work.’
“Dominic is super active — he is a great skateboarder, loves karate and just got a Tony Hawk BMX bike. I have a hard time keeping up with him (laughs).”
Q: Did you gain a lot of weight during pregnancy? How did you lose the pregnancy weight?
A: “I gained 36 pounds during my pregnancy. I worked out every day, but I had days where I didn’t always eat perfect. I had a C-section, but I was determined to lose the baby weight in 12 weeks or less. I would always read in magazines about how a celebrity lost the baby weight in 12 weeks, so that was my goal. As soon as I was cleared to exercise I started taking Dominic for 2 walks a day (each walk was 3 miles), then I started jogging, then I added in the weights. The weight came off in 11 weeks and 4 days.”
Q: Any last thoughts on making a lifestyle change, and starting a program like ‘21 Day Fix’?
A: “The key to success is taking it one day at a time, one meal at a time, one workout at a time. It’s good to have a long term goal, but it is also very important to have smaller goals so that you can see your progress and have motivation to keep going. Rome wasn’t built in a day, so be patient and trust in the process.”