I am back in full force! My board exam is over and I can get back to real life! And with real life comes my diet and fitness plan. I have mentioned once or twice already that I go through many fitness phases and enjoy doing different things, and currently consider myself a “Tone It Up Girl” (aka TIU). In the TIU world, Tuesday is “Tone It Up Tuesday”, so I figured today was the perfect day to share my experience with TIU and introduce you to K&K if you have never come across them before.
Tone It Up was started by Karena and Katrina, two fitness lovers in California. They have extensive fitness and training backgrounds, and one day decided to start posting fitness videos on Youtube. The videos became successful and now TIU is a full-fledged lifestyle program. Yes – lifestyle. That is what draws me to TIU so much. It is not a diet program. Karena and Katrina don’t tell you that you need to lose weight, and their program doesn’t promise it. Their number 1 goal is to make you feel confident and radiant, and they give you the tools to do it. The other great things about TIU is that it can be totally free of cost or you can make purchases to support the business and enhance your experience.
I could babble about this all day, so I will break my experience down into small sections to keep it concise. But, for the best and most information, go straight to the source!
Disclaimer: I am writing this post of my own accord. I am not being paid and all opinions are my own.
How did I discover TIU and when did I start?
I heard about TIU through a few classmates of mine in early 2014. I started off by doing the workouts on their website because their annual “Bikini Series” challenge was going on. I LOVED the workouts and I felt so good doing them. Once the series was over, I stopped doing the workouts so much because I got busy with school and working out fell to the side. In February 2015 I decided that I wanted to go full force and purchased the nutrition plan and 2 of their DVDs. I have been hooked ever since and have not had a break!
How much does TIU cost?
One of the best things about TIU is that it can be totally FREE if you want it to be! K&K post a weekly workout schedule every Sunday. If you follow pinterest and instagram close enough, you can get an idea of the kinds of foods that are in the nutrition plan and basically create your own eating style. If you do choose to purchase the nutrition plan, it is $150 ONE time. That’s right. No monthly fee, no annual fee. LIFETIME membership. There are different versions of the plan (regular, vegan, gluten free), but the plan basically consists of eating guidelines and recipes. Every so often (it seems like once or twice a year), they put out small updates of the plan that have some new recipes (like I said, no extra fee). The workout DVDs cost somewhere between $35-$45, I forget exactly, but to me they were well worth the money because I use them ALL THE TIME.
Ultimately, I would recommend you try out the free stuff and see how much you love it before making any purchases. It’s only worth the money if you know you will use it and love it!
What are the workouts like?
The biggest reason I have stuck to TIU is because the workouts VARY…and the girls make them fun. They have cardio routines (treadmill, elliptical, bike, yoga, HIIT) and toning routines to hit every muscle in your body. K&K create a weekly schedule so that you don’t over-train a certain part of your body, they make sure you rest your legs every now and then and focus on your arms, etc. This takes the guess work out of the routine. I just wake up and go (or click play)! In general, each day will consist of cardio (recommended in the morning) and toning (recommended in the afternoon). Workout times range from 5 to 60 minutes, depending on what you’re doing!
What is the Nutrition Plan like?
My one hassle with the nutrition plan is it is LONG! Which is a good thing because there are plenty of guidelines and variety. It does not lay out each meal, day by day (except for the Bikini Program part of it). They are guidelines of what to eat and when, and then recipes to help get you there. The recipes are marked for which meal they are appropriate for. It is all fresh, lean food. Mostly chicken and seafood, lots of fruit, veggies, and nuts. I love the plan because it is basic nutrition. It doesn’t count calories (although I still try to – and with the daily 5 meals I usually end up between 1500-1900 calories), and it focuses on fueling your body appropriately. The other thing I like is that it doesn’t deprive you. You consistently eat throughout the day, and they demand you have treats! Wine, chocolate, etc – all in moderation of course.
Do I have to follow every little thing they say to be successful?
Not at all! Although the plan spells out everything you SHOULD be doing – the first thing it says is that you have to do what’s best for YOU. If you don’t want to do the scheduled workout that day – do something else. If you have another healthy meal you want – go for it. The whole plan is just guidelines, and it encourages you to try new things and share them with the community.
Have I lost weight?
Let me put it this way – when I stick to the plan, I lose weight. When I go out and celebrate (aka almost weekly or more this summer), eat too much ice cream, or spend all afternoon snacking…I don’t lose weight. I’m getting ready to go wedding gown shopping next month so I’m at the point where I’m trying to string enough “good” days together to lose some considerable weight (like more than the 3 lbs I keep losing and putting back on). And although I haven’t exercised enough self control with food to actually lose weight, I am so much more toned. My thighs and booty have smoothed and lifted, and my arm and ab muscles are way more defined. It will be crazy to see how they look if (WHEN!) I really start sticking to the plan.
It sounds like a diet and exercise program, where does the lifestyle come in?
Like I said earlier, Karena and Katrina don’t focus on losing weight at all. They feature members who have lost weight, yes, but they also feature members who have added muscle and perhaps even gained weight because of it. They also like to focus on being happy and radiant and really LIVING your life. They constantly talk about making the most of each day and doing your best and doing what you love. They talk about challenging yourself and trying new things and living in the moment. Once you adopt that, you’re living the TIU Lifestyle. Every week in the workout schedule you will find little challenges the incorporate the TIU Lifestyle – recipes for a dessert, have a glass of wine, plan a girls night, plan a weekend getaway, take a bubble bath, wear a new color lipstick – you get the gist.
What is my favorite thing about TIU?
My favorite thing about TIU is the COMMUNITY. Karena and Katrina are very active on social media and encourage all of the members to be as well. There are forums on the website, but the instagram community is massive. So many women posting about their day and so many more liking, commenting, and supporting each other. I have met some great ladies through TIU, and have connected with many more who aren’t in my area.
For a look at a workout, here is what I’ll be doing at the gym this morning. It may look easy because walking is involved, but the incline is KILLER!