The 75 HARD Challenge
My wife recently sent me a YouTube video regarding something called the “75 HARD Challenge.” I watched it and said to myself “NO WAY.” The name itself was intimidating.
As I get older, I procrastinate more and more about the things I should be doing to live a healthier lifestyle. Who doesn’t enjoy eating delicious take out and watching television after a hard day of work? So, after seeing peoples’ unbelievable results, I have decided to give it a shot.
In reading the description, this is not only a fitness challenge but a “transformative mental toughness program.” It is not only for an exterior transformation, but, more importantly, to change your mental/emotional outlook. Who has had that internal argument in your brain, “should I work out tonight or take the night off?” “Should I have the chicken breast or the giant pizza?” The mental aspect of the challenge is supposed to revamp your life, and the physical changes are just an added benefit.
I understand the challenge is about mental toughness and designed to help people take complete control of their lives, from their way of thinking, to the level of discipline they approach doing single daily tasks.
So, I want and need a more consistent approach to fitness and nutrition. I am either all in or I fall so far off the exercise/nutrition wagon that the next wagon runs me over. I need a better balance between work and taking necessary time for me, physically and emotionally. Let’s face it, work is the most important aspect of everyone’s lives. It puts a roof over our heads and food on the table. However, I believe there can be room for everything, so here are the rules:
- Follow a diet. This can be the diet of your choice, but it must be a structured plan designed with a physical improvement in mind.
- You must complete two 45-minute workouts. One of those workouts MUST be outdoors.
- Absolutely NO alcohol or cheat meals.
- Take a progress picture every day.
- Drink 1 gallon of water.
- Read 10 pages of a book. Audiobooks DO NOT COUNT.
You have until you go to sleep to complete the day. If you fail, you MUST start over on Day 1.
So, for the next 75 days, I have six additional daily tasks that need completed before I go to bed. So, to finish this challenge successfully, I need to plan out my days to incorporate these additional tasks, instead of just going home, putting the kids to bed and sitting on the couch.
So, my plan (which will fluctuate) is to do my first 45-minute workout at 5 a.m. (yoga or another variation of strength training) outside. It tends to be chilly in Pittsburgh during the early morning hours in December, January and February. I will then do my second 45-minute workout on a Peloton bike. By doing the two workouts consecutively in the morning, I will not have to worry about this task anymore for the rest of the day. My workday will then begin and everything else will hopefully fall into line!
So why? Why bother attempting this uphill battle? First, to see if I can do it. Second, I find myself at times not prioritizing healthy food and exercise and at my age, approaching my 44th birthday, that has to change. I want to develop more consistency in these areas, while maintaining my current focus of being a lawyer, husband and father. By the end of 75 days, I hope to lose fat, gain muscle and advance my mental toughness. I want to be more focused, consistent, disciplined and stronger!
I will let you know what happens!
Looking for a new challenge in 2021? Try the 75 HARD Challenge. Chris McCabe explains.