One of the things I love talking about with people is the power of accountability in their fitness journey. It really does make all the difference! If you’ve been thinking about joining a challenge group, or even if you’ve done one in the past, I want to spend some time today talking about how to get the most out of challenge groups.
First off, what is a challenge group? My challenge groups are hosted online (usually through Facebook, but they can be through email too). These groups bring people together from all over who have a common goal: they want to live a healthier life. Throughout the day on Facebook participants will check in and share healthy recipes, motivational quotes, and encouragement and praise for each other. It’s way to feel connected to other people who share your same goals and are on the same journey. Challenge groups also keep you accountable for your daily workout, water intake, and healthy eating habits. It’s a great motivator on those days you just aren’t feeling it, knowing you have to check in with the group that night.
So how can you make the most of your challenge group? I can sum it up in one word: PARTICIPATE! For some of us, we need to shake off that shy or uncomfortable feeling of putting yourself out there. We won’t bite! Don’t be afraid to jump in and share your story with us. Don’t be afraid to post a motivational quote that really touched you or a new healthy recipe you discovered. Don’t be afraid to admit that you had a less than stellar day and didn’t quite meet your goals. It’s okay! Others in the group will rally behind you to lift you up and give you that encouragement to try again tomorrow. Likewise, don’t be afraid to comment on another person’s post in the group. You can be a cheerleader for someone else. You can tell someone else miles and miles away that you can relate to their struggle or success story & offer praise or encouragement. The more you participate in the group, the more you’ll see your own attitude about health and fitness changing. The challenge group will become something you look forward to seeing when you login into your Facebook account. I know I do!
Besides the public posting on Facebook, there’s another important way you need to participate during the challenge. Privately, participants need to send me goals at the start of the challenge group. These goals are your main focus during the duration of the challenge. How can you meet your goal? How can I help you meet your goal? Your goals are private between you and I. You’re also asked to send in body measurements throughout the 30 day challenges. Again, these are private between you and I. Some people tell me they really hate sending in the measurements. And believe me, I totally get it! It’s sometimes hard to see the numbers. But it’s so important! When I started my journey to a healthier lifestyle I hated seeing the numbers too. But I needed to confront the reality of it. I couldn’t be in denial about it any longer. And on a positive note, sending in the body measurements was helpful for me to see the numbers change and to know that my efforts were paying off and my body was changing. The measurements can also be an indicator telling you that something is off. Are your skimping on your healthy eating? Are you doing your workouts halfheartedly? The measurements can help us evaluate the changes that need to be made. Don’t brush off sending in those measurements! They are another way of participating in the group and keeping you accountable. After all, we’re more likely to follow through and hang on to healthy habits when we’re asked to be accountable and show progress. (and remember, it’s progress we’re after, NOT perfection!)
I have new challenge groups starting & I’d love to see you join us! To join this month’s challenge group, contact me through Facebook or firstname.lastname@example.org.