So you've joined the Challenge. What now?
Start preparing yourself for success.
So what can you do to start living a healthier lifestyle. We believe one of the most important aspects of weight loss and living a healthy lifestyle is simply to move. Make sure you start wearing your pedometer so that you create a habit of wearing it every day. Start off with just 30 minutes of physical activity each day. You don't have to go balls to the wall, increasing your heart rate to an ungodly number. But just start moving. Even if you for whatever reason cannot do 30 minutes all in one shot, walk 10 minutes at a time. Just get your butt up off that couch and MOVE!
Again, we will use the phrase, DON'T GO BALLS TO THE WALL! When changing your lifestyle, gradual changes will prepare you better for success. Should you remove junk food and other temptations from your surroundings? Sure. Should you grocery shop and purchase foods and items that will help you to be more successful? Absolutely. Should you COMPLETELY change your diet AND your portion sizes? We wouldn't recommend it. Why, you may ask? Because you will set yourself up for failure. Do not take away all of the things you may be used to at one time. Start slowly. For the first month, maybe you will just track how you HAVE been eating so that you can start making smart changes and creating new, healthy habits. Perhaps you want to start by eating breakfast every day (which you should!). Or maybe you can start by tackling portion sizes (but that doesn't mean you should eat like a bird!). Or perhaps you will start off by making some food swaps, like instead of drinking a super fancy, sugar-laden beverage to start your day, you try 8-12 oz. of flavored coffee with a 1/2 cup of skim milk and a couple packets of sugar substitute. Or instead of eating chips at night before bed, you try some raw veggies with a low-fat dip. Small changes are the key to long-lasting success.
Consider a coach
At this point in your journey, you may consider investing in a coach. We encourage you to practice caution as you weigh out your options. This time of year, there are many "specials" and "deals" on personal training. Make sure you are asking questions of the personal trainers/coaches. What is going to help you to be successful? You know yourself best, what will this trainer/coach need to do to keep you on track? Is the money you are investing worth it based on the trainer/coach you hire. We truly believe that a trainer/coach should not only help you to reach your goals, but also provide you with an education along the way. This year, we are excited to announce that we have partnered with a local personal trainer/coach who does just that. The Official Trainer of the 2015 Chippewa Valley Challenge is Jennifer McVicar of McVicar's Body Designs Studio. Should you be considering investing in a trainer/coach, we highly recommend reaching out to Jennifer. Even if you are just curious about what she can offer you, please send her a message.