Monday I finished up a 21 day challenge with my girl Janice Shephard and almost 250 other people within her circle of influence. Janice is known as the Zumba princess and it’s nothing for 75 to 100 people to show up for her classes weekly. Beyond her Zumba super powers, she is a stellar fitness and health influencer. Her foresight to host these occasional challenges is much appreciated from people at all stages of their fitness journey. Here were the rules….
The goal was to begin to break some of your bad habits while using the Facebook group as an accountability partner and support system.
I decided to join this challenge primarily for dietary purposes. I have a few weaknesses. Hot wings and pizza are two of my favorite eats! They have always been my foods of choice and in frequent occurrences. My goal was to eliminate the “need” to have hot wings and pizza weekly as part of my “meal planning”. I knew this would be a challenge for me, but what I wasn’t ready for was…
THE CHURCH CANDY!
All of my life, church candy has been just like the traditions that different denominations pick up. The picture on the bottom is actually the Sunday School teacher’s desk. He places the candy out effortlessly while he is teaching in the first ten minutes of class. It is there for the taking of all, and we always enjoy.
The starburst are just a preview of the treats I keep in my purse to pass out to members sitting close to me. I mean seriously, I had to really focus on this one. I don’t eat candy ANYWHERE else but I have to have a peppermint or something during Sunday School and services.
That was seriously the hardest habit mentally to stop for 3 weeks. Now, I don’t intend to stop eating my church candy, however I stuck with this rules to help discipline myself in other areas that are a little tougher for me.
If some of the guidelines for a challenge you are thinking about trying are demanding for you, here are 3 Ways To Use A Challenge To Develop Your Fitness & Health Journey!
1. Learn to Plan and Prep
In order for me to take this challenge seriously, I absolutely had to plan ahead. I have a commute to work and I work 12 hour shifts some days. It’s hard to eat healthy if you don’t plan your meals. I went grocery shopping on my day off and planned out my meals and snacks for work. I scheduled my workouts for the week outside of the 2 classes that I teach. The best tip I have here is write it all down! I live for the “to-do list”. The healthy living list is the same. Make a plan for the week and scratch the workouts and meals off as you accomplish these goals. You won’t have to have a physical list once you get in a steady routine after months of practice. Then it will come natural like my workouts typically are done. I will continue to write plan out my meals and write them down going forward while I continue to make healthier eating choices.
2. Solicit Help & Support From Your Immediate Circle
This was just one of the meals my baby sister cooked for me and the family. She has competed in a fitness competition and does not have issues with eating well. It is second nature to her. She was so excited that I was finally excited to try some dietary changes that she cooked 3 times during the first week of the challenge. It was so delicious. That was her goal. She wanted to show me that the way she eats can be tweaked while you are learning to try new things so that it doesn’t completely shock your taste buds. I cannot express enough how appreciative I was for her jumping in and helping.
That was my personal experience, however most of us have people in our immediate circle of influence who eat well and workout regularly. You need to link up with common minded people when you are trying to accomplish a healthy living goal.
3. Become a Blogger (Journal Your Experience)
Everyone needs a blog right? Seriously, you don’t need a blog to keep a journal. It’s a reason there are so many apps out there that you can log your workouts and food. It works. Journaling also makes you aware of what feelings lead up to you cheating on a challenge. You can also pin point the encouragers that helped you push through when you were ready to quit. All of these things are important because a challenge is not meant to last a lifetime but the ability to make changes and healthier choices should be a lifestyle change. If you journal your experience, you will always have it to go back and read for encouragement.
In case you were wondering, I had pizza once and wings twice in the 21 days. I really enjoyed the challenge and the network of people constantly motivating each other. There was no physical prize but we were all winners!
Yours in Healthy, Active, & Prosperous Lifestyles,
Rx Fitness Lady wants to know…
- What kind of fitness or health challenges have you joined?
- What is one area of your life where you could make a more healthy or fit choice?
- What is one food that you are not willing to give up?
Rx Fitness Lady
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