Where Should You Go If You Need Fitness or Nutrition Advice? #547 03/06/2014

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Where Should You Go If You Need Fitness or Nutrition Advice?

By Steve Edwards

"If I need fitness or nutrition advice, should I go to the Message Boards or ask my Coach? Help!"

Happy to, but first, let's define what a "Coach" is for those who don't know. Essentially, Coaches are independent Beachbody® sales reps. They promote fitness in their communities, guide individuals along their journeys, and sell them Beachbody products to help them succeed. In fact, here's an entire article on the opportunities and benefits of becoming a Coach.

Woman Thoughtful

Your Coach can recommend products to you and help keep you motivated, but your Coach may (or may not) be a fitness and/or nutrition expert.

For expert fitness and nutrition advice, we recommend coming to the Message Boards. Granted, the Boards are a large, potentially unwieldy animal. Without some guidance, they can seem overwhelming. But there's a decade's worth of advice in there and, more than likely, the answers to whatever questions you might have. I've answered close to 30,000 questions myself. (Second only to Denis "Adstaff Denis" Faye, who checks in at 40,000 recorded answers.)

How to Find Answers in the Message Boards

Message BoardThe best place to look for answers is in the "Expert Advice" section. There, you'll get answers from our fitness and nutrition staff. The community at-large can also comment, but our staff monitors all the answers for accuracy. If you get an answer in this section from another member, it may not necessarily be our opinion, but it probably won't be a terrible opinion—but if it is, one of us will pipe in and correct it.

Answers to most of your questions will probably be found in the Nutrition, Fitness, or Shakeology® threads. Unless it's a weekend, and even sometimes then, you'll likely have an answer by the end of the day. If you don't want to deal with the hoi polloi, make sure to write "Question for Steve," "Question for Denis," or "Question for Andrew" in the subject line. It'll get to us.

You can even try "Question for Tony," or "Question for Shaun," etc. They used to participate in the Boards and have answered a lot of questions. So many that we know what they're going to say to 99% of them. We also work with them on their programs, which doesn't hurt either. So while you probably won't get a personal answer from the person in your workout program, you'll get one approved by them.

If you're shy about posting in a public forum, you can set up your profile so it doesn't show personal information. Or you can search the topic to see if your question has already been covered. Although we have a search function, I personally prefer to use Google. Head to Google and do a search for your topic, but also make sure to add "Beachbody Message Boards" (in quotes). As personal as you feel your question is, there's a very good chance that someone's been there before. Frankly, I'd just ask. We're all friends here!

Why Our Advice Is Probably Better Than Your Coach's

Most of our experts have spent the last decade or more solely dedicated to developing Beachbody programs and answering questions about them. This makes us uniquely qualified to give you the most efficient answers to your questions.

We understand the obstacles faced by Beachbody customers. We know how to get results. No matter how unique you feel your situation is, chances are we've worked with someone who has a similar situation and our success rate is very, very high.

Steve Edwards and Denis FayeAfter all, results are our job. If we hadn't been able to get them, we wouldn't still be working here. Everyone on our staff walks that talk. (Check out our blogs, Steve Edwards Fitness and The Real Nutrition Nerd, for example.) None of our advice is theoretical. We know the drill.

How the Boards Will Make You a Better Coach

One of Beachbody's most successful Coaches (we're not using names because it feels like we're playing favorites) once told me, "I don't know as much about fitness as you guys, so why would I even try when I can just send them to the Boards? Letting people get their answers from you allows me to spend my time driving my business in other areas. They're such a great resource, I don't know why everyone doesn't use them."

Beyond that, learning and then repeating the Message Board advice we give keeps your customers on similar messaging, which makes your life easier as you transition from neophyte Beachbody user to Coach and fitness fanatic. It also means you end up wasting much less time trying to explain why someone isn't seeing success. Instead of using the latest headlines from Yahoo Health or some other site posting random stories to try and find the answer, we've already done the work for you so you can spend more time on your core agenda.

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"Ask the Expert: Are Cheat Meals OK?"
"Ask the Expert: Should I Avoid Fat in My Diet?"
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5 Ways a Coach Can Help You Reach Your Goals

By the Beachbody® Coaching Team

Beginning a new fitness program usually starts the same way: with eagerness, excitement, and a firm commitment to reach your goals.

But as time goes by, the challenges become greater. Distractions set in. Boredom. Fatigue. Temptation. You name it. Even the best of intentions can go awry.

Coach working out his team.

So why is it exactly that most people fail? Lack of accountability.

It's easy to make excuses when that second helping at dinner is staring you in the face or when that extra hour of sleep beckons. We need something—or someone—to make sure we uphold our end of the bargain and don't quit.

This is why Team Beachbody® created your secret weapon: a FREE personal Coach.

In fact, we created an entire network of Coaches you can partner with to achieve your goals and stay on track. Here are just a few of the many reasons why connecting with a Coach at TeamBeachbody.com can be the difference between success and failure.

1) Partner up

For most of us, going it alone is a one-way ticket to quitsville. That's because willpower alone is usually not enough to get the job done.

Want proof? We know that you're twice as likely to reach your fitness goals when you partner up and have support.

CoachHow can a Coach help you persevere? They're customers just like you who have stood in your shoes. They've taken on a fitness challenge and reached the finish line. And they're ready to help you do more than just talk the talk—they'll help you walk the walk and get real results.

He or she will be there when the going gets tough. They can help you get back up when you fall. And most of all, they'll hold you accountable and be with you every step of the way.

2) Get your fitness party started

As Mark Twain once said, "The secret to getting ahead is getting started."

He must have been starting a new exercise program.

It may sound simple, but just getting out of the starting gate is half the battle. Whether you've started before and fizzled out, or are still staring at an unopened fitness program, this is the first step to achieving results.

Your Coach will help you set a date to start, hold you accountable, and make sure you Push Play that first time. And you don't have to find the "right" time to meet with them. You can connect online, over the phone, through social media—whatever works best and fits your schedule.

In other words, no more waiting for the right time. No more excuses holding you back this year. It's all systems go in 2014!

3) Take a daily dose of motivation

Let's face it; we all have those days we don't want to get up and get going. Exercising is probably the last thing you feel like doing.

There are lots of Team Beachbody resources your Coach can recommend, including free 24/7 online support. Many Coaches also run Challenge Groups that can help connect you with other customers who share the same goals and are going through the same aches, pains, and doubts you are experiencing now. The Group will also share some amazing Success Stories for a little extra inspiration.

Coach spotting Woman Weight LifterEven when you're ready to give up—they won't give up on you!

Just pop into the Group and ask for a little push anytime you need it. Better yet, on the days you're feeling amped up, log in and inspire others. Remember motivation works both ways.

4) Eat right

What's the fastest way to derail a successful fitness program? Eat the wrong foods.

It's not always easy to eat right—especially when you're busy and on the run. But your Coach will be there to suggest some sensible, time-saving alternatives.

Talk to them about a healthy drink like Shakeology®—a superfood-packed meal that you can make in minutes. You can also trade recipes with your Coach and other customers in your Group, too. What's more, your Coach can direct you to some awesome, healthy meal substitutes on TeamBeachbody.com.

Sometimes all it takes is some simple suggestions to get you back on track.

5) Maintain your results

Perhaps you're one of the millions of people who got off to a blazing start with their fitness program—only to see it fall apart faster than you can say P90X3™!

This is where your Coach becomes infinitely valuable: helping you maintain your results.

They can help you pick your next program to fine-tune the results you have, or take you to the next level—all while keeping you plugged into the support and motivation that helped you succeed in the first place.

So log in to TeamBeachbody.com and connect with your Coach today. Just click the Contact My Coach button in the top left corner and you'll be on your way. It's easy. It's fun. It's free. And it might just be the smartest way to get—and maintain—results.

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"How to Bust Your 6 Biggest Excuses"
"How to Stop Making Excuses, a Q&A with the 21 Day Fix's Autumn Calabrese"
"15 Small Changes for Big Results"

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10 of the Best Coaches in the History of Film

By Steve Edwards, Denis Faye, and Rebecca Swanner

We've all had coaches, or at least mentors, that have helped shape our lives. Hopefully we know most of them personally, but we're often moved and changed by others who only live in lore. Whether they're real or fictional, they tend to be larger than life, making them great movie characters. Let's take a look at the crème de la crème.

People Cheering a Baseball Game.

Our panel includes three of Beachbody's most ardent film buffs: myself, Denis Faye, and Rebecca Swanner. We present them in no particular order, as what motivates us is personal. One person's Phil Jackson is another's Bobby Knight, Gunnery Sergeant Hartman, or Yoda. Who's to say? Well, us, so let's get to it. Here are 10 of the most influential coaches in film history.

Coach: Herb Brooks

"I'm not looking for the best players, I'm looking for the right ones."—Coach Brooks

I'm not sure Miracle is the all-time best coaching movie, but it's certainly one of the coolest stories so, in the spirit of the recent Winter Games, it's kicking off the list. Miracle follows the story of Coach Herb Brooks as he leads a bunch of no-name hockey players to deliver what is probably the greatest upset in the history of sports: the U.S. hockey team's victory over the USSR in the 1980 Olympics.

The Big Red Machine, as the Russian team was called, had beaten a group of NHL All Stars prior to the Olympics and was going for its 5th straight Olympic gold medal. It's one of those times that you remember where you were when it happened. On that night, "Do you believe in miracles?" became the most famous line in sports announcing history.

Picks from Denis Faye, Beachbody's nutrition guru, Message Board Advice staff, cyclist, surfer, and pop culture aficionado:

Star Wars
Coach: Obi-Wan Kenobi

"In my experience, there's no such thing as luck."—Obi-Wan Kenobi

To paraphrase Shakespeare, a coach by any other name can teach you just as much. Despite the fact that Star Wars isn't a sports movie—except maybe the "Holochess" scene on the Millennium Falcon—Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alex Guinness) is chock-full o' coachy goodness as a Jedi Master trying to teach young, headstrong Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) that proficiency in your chosen field (in this case, Empire-defeating) isn't just about knowing how to handle a light saber or an X-wing. It's about having patience and trusting in the system (and therefore your coach), because the system has been around for awhile and it's worked for everyone before you. Except your father.

North Shore
Coach: Chandler

"I only make boards one way. The right way."—Chandler

Although I far prefer Big Wednesday as a surfing movie, North Shore offers a more apropos coaching lesson. When young, headstrong Rick Kane (Matt Adler) arrives in Hawaii with dreams of going pro despite only ever having surfed a wave machine in his native Tatooine—I mean, Arizona—he gets a serious slice of reality pie in the face in the form of a thorough beat down by the locals. Luckily, he falls in with veteran surfer Chandler (Gregory Harrison), who teaches him to surf by making him ride a series of boards progressing from huge, ancient hardwood planks to ultra-light modern surfboards. North Shore attempts to shove about 5 million life lessons into this plot, but the big takeaway is that if you're first starting out, you're probably not as good as you think you are. However, the right coach can help you get that good—and then help you get even better.

Coach: Doc Hudson

"I'll put it simple: if you're going hard enough left, you'll find yourself turning right."—Doc Hudson

The "coach story" in this animated Pixar classic is pretty stock-car standard. Doc Hudson (Paul Newman) is a fallen hero hiding from the world in the sleepy, dying town of Radiator Springs. One day, young, headstrong Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) shows up in town after blowing up the Death Star and crushing the competition at the Billabong Pipeline Masters.

Actually, that's not McQueen's backstory at all, but that's irrelevant. What matters is that Hudson's mentoring makes him not just a better racer, but a better human being. (Technically, he's a car, but you know what I mean.) At the same time, Hudson learns a few life lessons himself, thus earning his redemption.

In other words, Cars contains the plot of every coach-centered sporting movie ever. But that's okay, because the idea that the mentor/disciple relationship goes both ways and that we can always learn from those we teach is an important lesson. This movie teaches it in a fun, easily digestible way. Watch it with your children and make time to discuss it afterwards, so that they can explain it to you. If your kids are anything like mine, they're probably far smarter than you are, so they'll have understood the lesson better.

Picks from Rebecca Swanner, Senior Content Manager, former entertainment journalist, renowned baker:

Fight Club
Coach: Tyler Durden

"How much can you know about yourself if you've never been in a fight?"—Tyler Durden

While Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) is hardly a coach in the traditional sense—he doesn't even train the Narrator (Edward Norton) for his bouts in Fight Club—Durden serves as his internal coach/mentor. Through a series of challenges—the lye burn, the explosion of his well-appointed apartment, countless interactions with the hot but unhinged Marla (Helena Bonham Carter)—Durden trains the Narrator to step outside of his comfort zone and discover a more authentic way of living, one that must inevitably end with the Narrator's standing up to Durden, once his boundary-pushing takes things too far.

A League of Their Own
Coach: Jimmy Dugan

"Sneaking out like this, quitting, you'll regret it for the rest of your life. Baseball is what gets inside you. It's what lights you up, you can't deny that…It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The hard...is what makes it great."—Jimmy Dugan

In the film that tells the tale of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, Tom Hanks plays Manager Jimmy Dugan, a disheveled, disorganized drunk who is ejected from the Cubs yet assigned to coach the Rockford Peaches. It takes a little while, but once Dugan finally manages to pull himself together, he uses his tough love and the classic line "There's no crying in baseball" to get his team of ragtag women who no one wanted to watch play ball to believe in themselves and not quit, no matter how hard things get for them. His brusque coaching style works and it isn't long until the stands are filled and the Peaches become the most successful team in the league.

The Matrix
Coach: Morpheus

"I'm trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You're the one that has to walk through it."—Morpheus

In the 1999 neo-classic The Matrix, Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) takes Neo (Keanu Reeves) down the rabbit hole, dramatically changing his perspective of the world he thought he knew, so that Neo can fulfill his destiny to save the human race. In this new "real" postapocalyptic world, Morpheus trains Neo to fight using a new cadre of skills that have opened up to him (cue the creation of "bullet time"), and at one point even speaks the Yoda-like line, "You're faster than this. Don't think you are, know you are. Come on. Stop trying to hit me and hit me." But the true gift he bestows upon Neo is not transforming him into an unstoppable assassin (or introducing him to the lovely Trinity [Carrie-Anne Moss], but training him to trust himself more fully and not feel limited to the seemingly real constraints of the world—inside or outside of the Matrix.

Picks from Steve Edwards, Beachbody fitness guy, former coach, filmmaker, and owner of Just Another @#$%! Video Shop:

Remember the Titans
Coach: Herman Boone

"You look like a bunch of fifth grade sissies after a cat fight! You got anger, that's good, you're gonna need it. You got aggression, that's even better, you're gonna need that, too. But any little two-year-old child can throw a fit! Football is about controlling that anger, harnessing that aggression into a team effort to achieve perfection!"—Coach Boone

There are so many great coaches in movies that I felt a little gutless going with the top box office earner on the list. The story is obvious: a coach comes into a segregated community and unifies the kids through football. Based on a true story, it has all the elements of sap, yet I dare anyone to watch it and not be moved. Doesn't hurt that one of the great actors of our time, Denzel Washington, plays coach Herman Boone. It also seemed appropriate to have a football movie on the list, though it bumped off "America's pastime," baseball. So in honorable mention, and in order to have a fictional character on my list, I add Coach Brown, from Major League.

Without Limits
Coach: Bill Bowerman

"Running, one might say, is basically an absurd pastime upon which to be exhausting ourselves. But if you can find meaning, in the kind of running you have to do to stay on this team, chances are you will be able to find meaning in another absurd pastime: Life."—"Meanest SOB I ever knew was called coach, call me Bill" Bowerman

The story of Steve Prefontaine, America's most famous, if not best, middle distance runner of all time was made twice, and both films are great (Prefontaine is the other). But, Prefontaine's story wouldn't be complete without a look inside at his relationship with legendary coach Bill Bowerman, who is played with subtle conviction by Donald Sutherland. The mentoring role here is less conventional, more strained and, in my mind, it makes it better. More real. Without Limits rises above a sports movie and makes my all-time list of great films, sports or not. Honorable mention goes to Sam Mussabini in Chariots of Fire, another on my all-time list, regardless of subject.

Glory Road
Coach: Don Haskins

"Your dignity's inside you. Nobody can take something away from you you don't give them."—Coach Haskins

Thankfully, it's hard to believe that a time existed when sports were racially segregated, but that color barrier still existed less than a generation ago in college basketball. This film is about the coach that changed it. Don Haskins' career at the University of Texas at El Paso (formerly Texas Western) seems like a basketball insider's secret, even in a day and age where college coaches are often big TV personalities. While his contemporaries, like John Wooden and Adolph Rupp, are household names, you still need to read the fine print to know how pivotal Haskins was to the modern game. Or you can just watch this film, which never quite reached the fame of most obvious offerings, like Remember the Titans or Hoosiers, even with a storyline (and artistic merit) that's every bit as strong. And about Hoosiers, it's a very close honorable mention. It's fantastic, and I've seen it many times, but I'm giving Glory Road the nod simply because fewer people have seen it.

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Recipe: Hearty Beef Stew

(Makes 6 servings)

Hearty Beef Stew
For a quick, healthy meal in the middle of winter, try this hearty beef stew, or our vegan-friendly version.

Total Time:          1 hr. 15 min.
Prep Time:          15 min.
Cooking Time:    1 hr.


  • 1-1/2 lb. raw lean beef stew meat, boneless
  • 1-1/2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. hot pepper sauce (like Tabasco)
  • 1/2 to 1 cup low-sodium organic beef broth (or vegetable broth)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 medium potatoes, cubed
  • 3 cups cooked quinoa, hot


  1. Place beef, onions, tomatoes, soy sauce, hot sauce, ½ cup broth, and bay leaf in large saucepot.
  2. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, covered, for 40 minutes, adding additional broth as needed.
  3. Add bell peppers, carrots, and potatoes; cook, covered, for an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until sauce has thickened and beef is fork tender.
  4. Serve with quinoa.

Vegan Variation:

Substitute beef with same amount of tempeh. Use only 1/2 cup vegetable broth instead of beef broth. Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. Add vegetables and cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes.

Nutritional Information (per serving):

Calories Fat Saturated Fat Cholesterol Sodium Carbs Fiber Sugar Protein
346 7 g 2 g 75 mg 626 mg 40 g 6 g 5 g 33 g

P90X®/P90X2® Portions:

Protein Carb / Grain Vegetable
1 1 1

P90X3™ Portions:

Protein Carbohydrate Fat
1 1 1

Body Beast® Portions:

Proteins Starches Vegetables
3 2 2

21 Day Fix™ Portions:

Red Container Yellow Containers
1 2

If you'd like to ask a question or comment on this newsletter article, click here to add a comment in the newsletter review section or you can email us at mailbag@beachbody.com.

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