Weight loss challenges have become "the thing" in fitness over the last decade. No doubt, influence from shows like the Biggest Loser are responsible for their popularity. The lure of massive physical transformation, a trainer doing everything for you, except for all the reps, and a dose of healthy competition and public accountability has made them wildely popular and successful.
As humans, we are susceptible to many obligatory reactions. Put yourself up against someone else with a big prize looming, and you'll see some real grit and effort. Take the same people and put them in a gym and say, "alright, go have at it," and all you'll get is some languid exercise on the treadmill...or an awkward attempt at the confusing circuit of machines.
That's why, as a trainer, I'm a huge fan of challenges. We've started to use them in our classes this last year, and let me tell you, the results have been amazing. We have clients who've struggled with weight for 10 years up to an entire lifetime. And with the right dose of nutrition, butt-kicking workouts, and competition, they've transformed their physiques.
When I was younger, I always thought about being a trainer but I was turned off by the image of your standard trainer. You had to look like a Ken or Barbie doll, and you were mainly helping people with vanity work. It just lacked something for me.
After years of being an acupuncturist, I now look at training through a different lense. I came to the world of kettlbell training with the perspective of making people feel better, live longer, have less pain, and yes, look better in the mirror.
Challenges have become a great vehicle for making powerful and lasting change in our client's lives. To see someone come in the door 50lbs overweight, in pain, and desperate to change- then giving them the tools to transform their health- there's nothing more rewarding as a trainer.
When you're looking for a good weight loss challenge, make sure it comes with the three components that make the Biggest Loser so effective: Powerful and safe but intense exercise (sorry, but if it isn't challenging, it isn't effective), nutrition support, and some form of group support. There's a lot to overcome when you're trying to drop serious weight, so make sure all these components are present.
So if you are in this category (needing to drop 20+lbs), consider finding a weight loss challenge somewhere local to you. Even better, find a friend or two to join you and help hold each other accountable. You could literally lose 2lbs a week of bodyfat in a good program. Start today, and that could be up to 38lbs by Christmas. And that's a fairly conservative number if you've got a lot to lose.
For info on our next challenge, starting September 17th, visit www.39minuteworkout-90.com We cap our number at 25 members