Yesterday was the beginning of the Tone It Up 21 Day Challenge, which is a 3 week program put on by two fitness trainers that includes a general weekly workout guide, daily toning moves & a few healthy Fall recipes (heavy on the pumpkin spice). I’ll be participating for the most part this year, though I’m decidedly giving myself some flexibility around travel and Friendsgiving this weekend. It really got me thinking though about why I choose to do these challenge programs regularly, and I figured that there would be a few of you out there that are wondering the same.
1. Fitness is a Habit
Shocking no one, it turns out that most people don’t just start running a few miles every morning or knowing how to lift heavy crap in a weight room. Having a very clear and thorough instructions is incredibly helpful to those of us that need a little bit of hand-holding when we’re forming healthy new habits. The same can be said for cooking healthy meals on the regular.
A daily outline for what exercises to do or which body parts to work can really help take the stress out of the situation. I love Lauren Gleisberg’s seasonal challenges when I want to change things up, though in the past I’ve used largely Tone It Up’s weekly schedule. Many people I know swear by Blogilates and I’ve also tried out the 12 week Bikini Body Guide, though the latter doesn’t give you much until you pay for the guide.
2. Motivation is Key
Are you the type of person who can keep going on the same original motivation toward a healthy lifestyle for the next few decades? If yes, please immediately inject me with a vial of your lifesblood. Okay, maybe that’s slightly dramatic.
If you’re like me at all, you need all the help you can get. A new pair of running shoes, a fun seasonal recipe, and a fun challenge to work at. If you can somehow stumble yourself into a series of good habits that you occasionally reignite with infusions of motivation, that right there is your perpetual motion machine.
3. The Support System Is Crazy Good
Try looking up #tiuteam on Instagram. How about #lgcommunity or #bbgfam? The entire reason I even started an Instagram account was to follow these everyday people just getting it done in a way that inspired me to do and be better. Having the courage to put yourself out there is a transformative experience, trust me.
4. Cash Un-Required
Sure, you might not get access to all the prem-o stuff for a challenge, but you can definitely make it by without spending a dime if you don’t want to. Tone It Up has plenty of free workouts to set you up for a good long while, and the same goes for Lauren Gleisberg and many others.
If you’re looking for a regimented eating plan, you’ll be a bit more hard-pressed to find a good free version (neither of the above off that without a paywall) but starting out with publicly available recipes, like these Pumpkin Pie Spice overnight Oats is at least a great way to dip your toe in before you drop any money on it.
If you’re looking for a fun way to get a fitness routine started (with the approval of your doctor) or spice up the one you already have going, I definitely suggest looking into a free fitness challenge. We’re coming up on holiday season, so they’ll be popping up left and right from here to Valentine’s Day.
Disclaimer: Remember, I’m not a personal trainer, a physical therapist or most importantly your doctor. I’m just sharing my personal fitness experiences on my own little corner of the internet in the hopes of helping others become a little more healthy and active.