One Month Challenge

Every month the staff at Frontrunners have a one-month challenge. Over the course of the month, with the help of the odd customer, friend of the store and delivery people, the staff has to complete a set quota of exercises. "Coach Tony” sets out the goals. Last month it was "as easy as 1-2-3.” Over the month we completed, 1000 chin-ups, 2000 push-ups and 3000 sit-ups. What is so wonderful about these challenges is that they encourage us, improve morale and have us work as a team to achieve the goal. And, of course, achievement of the goal comes with rewards (usually yummy treats). The challenge reminds me of how important it is to set realistic, bite sized goals.

This month I encourage you to take the challenge. Start by looking at what you would like to achieve. Here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

• Perhaps you run or walk 2 times per week. What about increasing that number to 3 or 4 times per week to achieve a monthly goal of 16 walks?

• If you go to the gym for 45 minutes three times per week, why not log your hours at the gym for the month and reach for a total of 12 hours by adding 15 minutes to each workout.

• If you would like to work on stress management, consider taking a "time out” for 60 minutes over the month; a mere 2 minutes per day to allow you to relax, refresh, and rejuvenate.

• Your goal could be nutrition related. Most Dietitians recommend eating a minimum of 5 fruits and vegetables per day. If it seems like a lot, why not tackle it with a challenge: make your monthly total 150 fruits and vegetables and think of creative ways to make it happen.

Keep your month fun and friendly by making it a team effort. Rally your family, co-workers or friends to join you on the challenge. Not only will working with other help to keep you on track, everyone will benefit. Whether it’s on your own or with friends or family, make a chart to record your progress. Somewhere on your chart write the reward you will be working towards. Pamper yourself with a manicure or pedicure, or buy yourself a new piece of clothing, a CD or game you’ve been wanting. If you’re working as a family group, why not plan a fun outing you can all enjoy! The treat will be that much sweeter knowing that you did something great for your body, mind and spirit to earn it!

Gillian Goerzen, BSc (kin), BCRPA SFL PT GF, is a provincially registered personal trainer. She coaches beginner running and triathlon clinics through Frontrunners, provides private personal training in clients’ homes, & provides consulting and seminars on health and wellness to corporate and private clients. Her email is: