We just finished a challenge at Body Basics in Boise called “Stronger Together.” It was a challenge for teams of 2 people to work together and get points by doing different health and fitness components during a 6 week period. We used before-and-after pictures and awarded the top 3 teams with extra points that made the biggest change in their bodies throughout the challenge.
Many of the trainers also teamed up with friends or family and did the challenge as well. It’s always interesting doing a challenge as a personal trainer. Maybe it’s because I feel we’re held to a different standard since we’re fitness professionals. In any case, I thought it would be helpful for others to hear what trainers had to say about doing the challenge. Here are some of our takeaways...
James: I was reminded how hard it is to create change in our bodies. Every little detail, every snack, every single thing you put in your mouth better be working toward your goal, or it’s tough to make progress. Not only that… Since it takes so much work and sacrifice, you better learn to enjoy the process. You’ll be hungry often and want to eat things you shouldn’t. It’s those little continual sacrifices that make the difference. Don’t reward your small victories with things that sabotage your progress. You basically have to change your desires and cravings. Start enjoying green tea instead of caloric drinks; chopped veggies instead of fattening snacks; and feeling slightly hungry instead of feeling full all the time. In 6 weeks, I lost about 2% body fat, sleep better, am more mentally astute, have more energy, and feel great! It’s worth it!
NOTE: Picture above includes before pictures from January 7th, 2017, and after Dec. 14th, 2018. I was 196 with body fat around 15%. When I took the after pictures, I was around 185 with a body fat at about 10%
Katie: This challenge unveiled my tendency to eat when I am stressed!! I loved the awareness it brought to my reactive behavior… giving me the opportunity to address bad habits and work on creating new ones. Learning to love the process with weekly attainable goals worked great for me. I will be honest and say the last two weeks were a big push. I was ready to have a meal out and relax with my hubby and friends. Overall my consistent effort paid off, and I’m happy with the new habits and awareness that it’s brought to me.
Christine: Every single person—personal trainers included—has room for improvement in some facet. I love challenges like these because it allows me to fine tune certain areas that might be too relaxed. I am NOT supposed to be eating cane sugar due to an allergy (and plus it’s just plain toxic). Before the challenge, I’d have it a bit here and there—not much at all, but even just a little bit makes a big difference in how I feel. Being off of sugar is my feel-good place and is where I need to stay. I loved the exercise challenge too. I normally exercise 5-6 days a week, but for some reason having exercise as one of the challenges, made me amp up my intensity a bit during my normal workouts. There were several evenings where I had not gotten a workout in that day yet, so I’d put on some music at home and do 30 min of yoga—so great! One evening I had my kids make up moves for a Tabata workout, and we all did them… that was interesting to say the least! Ha! The challenge helped me to lose a little weight; although, that was not the main goal. I’ve found that as you focus on health, the weight will naturally follow suit. If weight-loss is your primary goal, your health could potentially be compromised and the weight usually doesn’t stay off (if lost). This challenge was a great reminder of that.