How Can You Make a Challenge Work for You?

It’s January 10th and already people are talking about how empty the gyms are becoming. It’s been ten days!

This begs the question of WHY? Why do so many give up on goals so easily? I have a few answers to that question:

  1. The goals were not thought out well at all. Saying you want to lose 50 pounds while chugging your 3rd glass of Champaign on New Year’s Eve does not translate into actual pounds lost. Goals must be thought out thoroughly and this question must be answered: “What am I willing to giveĀ up to reach my goal?”
  2. The thought that actually planning, and not just showing up, is involved rarely crosses our minds. Simply signing up for the gym or re-igniting your commitment to push play will not happen unless planning is done.
  3. We underestimate the power of habit. That extra weight did not just show up one day. It packed on due to habits that had formed. That could be the popular habit of sitting to watch TV (GUILTY! Darn you, Big Bang Theory!), or the habit of piling a little more on your plate than 1 serving. Eating at fast food places is a HABIT. People don’t really think those greasy burgers taste better…it’s just easier to swing by because of habit. Good news: YOU can create healthy habits too :)
  4. We’re confused on our priorities. Take this example: if my #1 priority is spending time with my kids in the evening because I work all day, but I pony up for a gym membership and vow to go after work for a 1-2 hour workout 5 days per week…well, I end up conflicted and the gym membership, the workouts, and even my own kids become a serious source of stress.
  5. We lack a support system. You have to admit, it works better when somebody can be there to offer a shoulder to cry on, a hand to help you up, or a swift kick in the pants whenever you need it during this journey. We were created for community! People need each other in many aspects of life and reaching goals is a huge one!

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THIS is where group challenges can be extremely beneficial. Taking a nutrition and fitness challenge in a group of like-minded individuals has been shown to:

  • Increase success
  • Help you stick to the program
  • Keep you excited about the results to come
  • Develop new, healthy habits
  • You’ll lose more weight and inches
  • Make new fit friends
  • Help you stay motivated and inspired
  • Creates an opportunity for you to inspire others

There are more benefits to add, but these can be quite impressive when you’re seeking real change.

As the challenge season opens up (I’ll have some info on mine towards the bottom), here are my top tips for seeing GREAT results:

  • Stay engaged. Check with other challengers daily and mark your weekly progress so you can notice the changes even if you don’t see them right away.
  • Choose the right program. Not all programs are created equal. You may like certain trainers, be at a different fitness level, or have different goals, but make sure you think about the time you have to commit and what you really want to accomplish.
  • ASK QUESTIONS! I think far too many people fall off the goal wagon simply because they are unwilling to ask questions. I promise, whatever it is your coach has probably heard it before, so ask away!
  • Trust the process. We all want results yesterday, but your body doesn’t work like a drive through…you have to give it time and effort.
  • Keep track of your progress. Maybe you lost 2 pounds last week and none this week, BUT you did 5 extra push ups. It’s all progress! Strength gains, weight loss, cardiovascular efficiency…they all get better.

chalene

So, how do challenges work?

I’ve run a few and made my fair share of mistakes I admit. Through all of the previous challenges, I have learned some golden lessons that will help make this years challenge a guaranteed success! I believe in these challenges because home-based fitness is what sparked my love for health and transformed my body entirely. I was able to lose over 100 pounds while still being a mommy to my 2 young kids. Now, I’m able to share that with others in a far better way than I ever dreamed. Wait for it…I’ll be releasing a video about my experience with home-based fitness programs and nutrition next week. :)

Interested to see how this works?

  1. You get started for FREE by logging into a free account HERE.
  2. Then, you browse through the programs and blogs, do some research and line up your goals and priorities.
  3. EMAIL ME! Don’t skip this step. Email me and let’s dig through your goals, fitness level, commitments and everything that affects your success to find the PERFECT program for you.

Once all of that is accomplished, I set you up on my challengers page and we get going. So what are the highlights of THIS particular challenge? I’m so glad you asked :)

  • Daily motivation and check ins with your coach (ME) on the page.
  • Weekly emails to give you insider tips you don’t get in your programs. I’ve been doing this for a LONG time and can give you tips that will blow your mind.
  • Help with recovery.
  • Personalized nutrition advice as needed.
  • Monthly phone/Skype chats with the group to check in and stay motivated.
  • Access to videos and information designed specifically for challenges.

You can start getting set up anytime, but I’ll open the flood gates on January 15th. I take 20 people in first and once they’re established (usually 1 month) I take 20 more. Here’s the BIG change: you’ll have access to all of this for 1 full year! Plus, you’ll get to check out some other really cool things I’m working on. So, even if you finish a 90 day challenge, you can do it again and still have the support you need. What I’m looking to create here is an environment for CRAZY SUCCESS!

Now the question is…are you in it?

Michelle

Rockstar Training

 

Healthy Holidays: The Art of Giving

Hello Fitness Elves!

This time of year presents parties, busy challenges and fun to be had all over. We often are able to spend more time with family and even see friends and loved ones we don’t normally get to see. In the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, perhaps you have come to a stopping point on gifting. The gifts we give needn’t be extravagant or expensive to show we care. And what better way to show you care than to give the gift of health and fitness. I’m going to break down some favorite fit gifts, from the ordinary to the crazy, so come along for the ride!

LET’S START WITH THOSE JUST STARTING

Either you or a loved one could possibly be just venturing into fitness. The gift of at-home fitness can be a great way to offer encouragement and empowerment. But what do you give? Well, it can take a little finesse to make sure you get it right, but with these tips, you’re sure to get a bright smile and a heartfelt “THANK YOU SO MUCH!” from the recipient….plus, you’ve truly just given the gift of health :)

  • Consider a home-based program. Beach Body offers a wide variety of programs for any goal and fitness level. You can also find challenge packs full of goodies and nutrition as well. Now, in order for this to work you really do need to know the level of your recipient as well as their overall goals and motivations. Got a bestie who loves running and is looking to add some strength training? Opt for Chalean Extreme. Is your family member a class enthusiast who has been sidelined from the gym by having kids at home? Check out Turbo Fire. P90X, P90X2 AND P90X3 are all great options for those with big goals who love to work. There are also programs for weight lifters, Tai Chi (called Tai Chang) , as well as dance, kickboxing and more. Draw backs? The one big one is some of the programs cost upwards of $80, so you better like these people :) . The best thing is that these programs are tried and tested for safety and effectiveness. One of my favorites to gift out: Body Combat. Intense, but doable. PLUS, awesome accents :)

rach chalene tony danP90x_product_configuration_170x100

  • If you’re strapped for cash OR have no clue as to the above criteria, opt for a gift card. Beach Body offers gift cards that work towards anything they sell (even vitamins and recovery). You can also check out cards to online Fitness DVD’s like Collage Video and Acacia.
  • Make a gift bag. Grab a cute gym bag and fill it with goodies to keep them going. Consider things like water bottles, sweat towels, body spray and even deodorant. It all comes in handy no matter where your workout takes you.
  • A smaller option for quick fitness is a small gift bag with a towel, refillable water bottle, gift card to a shoe store (doesn’t have to be much), and a fitness magazine to inspire. My faves are Oxygen, Fitness RX for Women, and Muscle and Fitness for Women.
  • A pedometer can range in price from $10-over $100 and make great gifts for getting people up and moving.

How about the ones who already frequent the gym?

If your friend or loved one already clocks in hours at the gym on a weekly basis, try out these gift ideas to show your support and keep them motivated.

  • A gift card to just the right place. Nike, Under Armour, Athleta, Adidas, New Balance and Reebok ALL offer gift cards that can be emailed directly to your recipient. Who wouldn’t want an awesome new outfit to rock during that New Year’s Day workout right?
  • One place: ITUNES. This gift card will allow your buddy to load up on hot new tracks to fuel hard-core workouts. You can get any amount and these make AWESOME stocking stuffers too.
  • How about a small gift bag full of gym goodies? Opt for a nice sweat towel (or 2), socks, makeup wipes, deodorant, body spray, flip-flops (for the gym shower), small tooth brush and tooth paste (or wisps), and a lock to keep it all safe.
  • If you’re looking to spend a little more, consider a calorie expenditure reading device. Think Body Bugg, Jawbone, or the Exerspy (my favorite).

Nutrition Nuts:

This is for those who don’t focus as much on the movement as they do on the health of their food. Few and far between, but they still deserve great gifts :)

  • Shakeology. 1 bag will last them a month and comes with loads of recipes. It will help promote weight loss, lower blood sugar and cholesterol and has also had positive effects on mood disorders.
  • Gift card to a local whole foods and a really awesome cook book. I am loving the Clean Eating series by Tosca Reno, It’s All Good by Gwyneth Paltrow and The Beauty Detox Foods by Kimberly Snider.
  • Browse the recipes here and bake up some healthy goodies. It will save you money and give away what people value most: your time.

The Gamers:

  • Xbox One. Now, this is no cheap investment, BUT the Xbox One does have an awesome fitness component that comes free with a GOLD membership. Here’s a couple of things to consider: this will cost you over $500 for the basic console, so it’s not a cheap gift. Also, if you have a couch potato gamer, simply having popular workouts ON a gaming system does NOT seem to make them want to get off the couch (I have learned from experience). Overall, the Xbox One is a superior system with awesome graphics and much faster voice command than the previous console.
  • Dance Games. Dance Central and Just Dance can get just about anybody up and moving at least a few times. My daughter has all 3 Dance Centrals and that is her PE time.
  • Kinect Adventure games. You can jump into just about any sport with these games. Have you always wanted to skateboard, but fear the fall? Yeah, there’s a game for that. Skateboarding, rafting, volley ball, soccer, boxing, snow boarding, etc. You can be a sports star in your living room.
  • Kinect MMA Conditioning. This is my gig and is backed by NASM. You’ll get real MMA training and conditioning all while preparing you for the fight of your life: ownership of your own health.

Stocking Stuffers:

  • Small gift cards to ITunes, Academy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Sports Authority, Beach Body, Nike, Under Armour, etc.
  • Raisins
  • Socks
  • Small sweat towels
  • Pedometer

And, for the BEAUTY in your life:

I couldn’t neglect this one because I am OBSESSED with it. Derm Exclusive is a dermatologist skin care line that has completely changed my skin. It lessens spots and wrinkles and is just all out wonderful for glowing, gorgeous skin. you can even get one month for less than $50. The beauty in your life will thank you :)

Derm Exclusive

LAST, but not least:

Consider giving a personal training session, package or consult. I offer all of those and I’m happy to help you figure out the best one for your loved one. :) You can reach me at michelle@michellecfitness.com

Rockstar Training

Well, that’s it for fit gifts. I’ll be back on a couple of times before Christmas with more fit tips, so stay engaged and stay healthy!

Michelle