I would be lying if I said that I was happy with the way 80 Day Obsession ended for me. But it's not for the reason you might think.
I began my final week (Peak Week!) a day earlier than the rest of the world, on Sunday (essentially skipping my rest day), because I had plans on visiting some of of my college girlfriends in Brooklyn over the next weekend, right after my program ended. I was planning on flying out Friday night and knew that I probably wouldn't be able to complete the final workout ("Booty Day") on Saturday morning in my friend's apartment because I needed my weights. So I shifted everything a day back.
Last Sunday was Easter for my husband's family (they are Orthodox Christian), but it was also supposed to be a deplete day in Peak Week. Deplete days are essentially low carb days. In Peak week, it's 2 deplete days, then 1 regular eating day, then 2 deplete days, then 1 regular eating day, which is basically carb-cycling. I had done carb-cycling before when I did the "Countdown to Competition" meal plan with 21 Day Fix Extreme right before my wedding, so I wasn't really stressed or nervous to do it again. Even though it was Easter, I was able to stick to a mainly protein/veggie/healthy fats diet. So the week was starting off right.
I decided to do early AM workouts each day this week, even though I didn't necessarily need to. I'm not totally sure why, it just saved me some time in the evenings to get other stuff done. On Tuesday (leg day), I pushed myself extra hard. Upped my weights to mostly 20 pound free weights on all exercises. It felt AWESOME in the moment. But I really wish I foam rolled because I felt so sore the next day!
Turns out, though, the aches and pains might not just have been from the tough workout. I had been experiencing a scratchy throat for most of the week, but was pushing through it. The pain wasn't too bad and I could get through my daily activities just fine. Plus, next week my high school select choir is going to NYSSMA Majors and I wanted to rehearse with them.
On Wednesday morning, I was only really able to get through about half of my Day 78 workout (I did one round of everything instead of two). When I got home from school on Wednesday, I took my temperature and crawled right into bed. I basically fell asleep at 4 PM. On Thursday morning, I still had my fever and my sore throat was way worse. I stayed home from work and went to the doctor. He said I had strep and needed to stay home from school on Friday, too, while I began antibiotics. The aches and pains I had been feeling might be from working out, he said, but could also be partially caused by the strep.
I was supposed to be flying to Brooklyn on Friday at 6:30 PM and so I asked him about this. He said that if my fever broke and I was feeling better, then I technically could, since I would have been on antibiotics for 24 hours at that point. But by midday on Friday, neither of those things had happened and I knew that I couldn't go. So I had to make the dumb, stupid grown-up decision and cancel my flight and suffer through my FOMO while my girlfriends saw a Broadway show and had brunch and enjoyed NYC.
You might be wondering, what happened to Peak Week? What happened to the deplete days and Days 79 and 80 of the workouts? Yeah, those didn't happen. As I write this journal entry on Sunday, I am still in a bunch of pain, though my fever did break. I've ended up having a bunch of soup and froyo and jello and various other cold/hot smooth things which are NOT a part of the meal plan.
I've learned two big things from this surprise week:
1) I have a great support system. As I was first getting sick, I kept thinking, "Oh my god, the dishes are piling up - I'm a bad wife. I have to cancel on this trip - I'm a bad friend. I'm not finishing this fitness program - I'm a bad leader. I have to ask all of the favors of my coworkers - I'm a bad colleague." But then, that began to flip all that in my mind. Sawyer has been taking care of me, essentially waiting on me hand and foot (with innumerable Wegmans trips) and taking care of all of our typically shared household chores. My friends were so kind and gracious in understanding why I couldn't go and sent me little texts and pictures over the weekend to check on me. My fitness challengers kept on rocking their own health journey and began following up with ME to see how I was doing. And my work friends really stepped in at the eleventh hour to make sure everything happened that needed to get done. So my feelings of self-pity and self-doubt have really shifted to gratitude.
2) 80 Day Obsession is not meant to be 80 days and then you're done. And I knew this all along, but this sickness was kind of like a reminder from the universe. Because fitness should continue to be a part of everyone's lives, not just for 80 days, but for almost every day. So it doesn't really matter if I did 78 days instead of 80 days, because as soon as I feel better, I'll just begin exercising and eating well again on what would have been my "81st day".
So what exactly am I going to do next? Welllllllll I actually think I am going to do 80DO again. Now, I think I can hear my friends and family gasp from hear, so before you get too nervous, let me say that I will be doing it with modifications. I will not be trying to follow the meal plan 100%. I will be enjoying wine with my girlfriends, and pizza with my family, and I will go out to lunch with my colleagues during Regents week in June. But I think I have learned how much I don't really need all of those things in order to have fun or enjoy myself.
Of course, I find it humorous that after my 3-month self-imposed sobriety, I end up beginning a 10-day antibiotic regimen.
If you're at all curious about what these workouts or timed nutrition could do for you and your health goals, or you want to do the modified 80 Day Obsession with me, just fill out this form here. We'll divide the 80 days into three 30-day challenges :) It's gonna be great! I can't wait to work with you!