Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Great in 8 Challenge

One of my visiting teachers sent me an e-mail earlier this week with the title A little wellness challenge? I started reading it, thinking it would be a cute "drink at least 1 liter of water a day for two weeks" or "take a multivitamin every day for a month" kind of thing. Um, no. It's intense. Well, it's not THAT intense, but it's intense to a girl who considers pasta, chocolate, and butter to be vital parts of existence! Here are the details...

Feeling Great in 8 - A simple point-based plan of healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle resulting in possible weight loss and probable gain of healthy habits for both body and spirit

How to earn points
-Good foods: 1 point for each good food eaten, up to 10 points a day
-Fruits and veggies: 10 points for eating a total of 5 fruits and vegetables a day (all or nothing, also counts towards "good foods")
-Drinking water: 5 points for drinking at least 48 ounces, 10 points for drinking at least 64 ounces (all or nothing)
-No nighttime snacking: 5 points for not eating anything after 8pm (can still drink water though)
-Exercise (can be at whatever level, can be split up throughout the day, 20 points max)
*15-30 minutes is 10 points
*31-45 minutes is 15 points
*46+ minutes is 20 points
-Personal prayer: 5 points for daily morning and evening personal prayer (2 points if just one or the other)
-Daily scripture study (scriptures, Conference talks, Sunday lesson prep, etc., 20 points max)
*15-30 minutes is 10 points
*31-45 minutes is 15 points
*46+ minutes is 20 points
-Weekly task: 10 points for successfully completing a task or two assigned at the beginning of each week

How to lose points
-Bad foods: Subtract 2 points for every serving of bad food eaten, no max

Good foods
-Greens (any and all)
-Olive oil
-String cheese/low-fat cheese
-Fruits (any and all)
-Vegetables (any and all)
-High fiber, whole grain, low sugar cereal (Mini Wheats, Cheerios, Kashi, Wheat Chex, etc.)
-Oatmeal (not instant unless plain, can add a touch of syrup, honey, agave, etc.)
-100% whole grains (bread, pasta, rice, etc. NO EXCEPTIONS)
-Low fat yogurt
-Tuna (packed in water)
-Lean beef
-Low fat, low sodium lunch meat
-Light mayo
-Light sour cream
-Cottage cheese
-Air popped or low fat microwave popcorn
-Low sodium soup
-Daily multivitamin
-Nuts, not sugared or sweetened

Bad foods
-Sugary, low fiber cereal
-White anything (bread, pasta, rice, etc.)
-Fried foods (anything!)
-Bakery items (cake, pie, donuts, etc.)
-Soda (diet included!)
-Drinks with sugar (Gatorade, SOBE, etc.)
-Regular mayo
-Regular sour cream
-Ice cream
-Potato chips (any and all)
-Chocolate (even dark)
-High sugar, high carb bars with more than 15 grams of carbs (granola bars, NutriGrain bars, etc.)
-Hot dogs, processed meat (fish sticks, chicken nuggets, etc.)
-Regular lunch meat

I like this system because it's not rigid and there's so much more to it than what you eat. You get points for eating right, exercising, praying, studying scriptures, and drinking water. You lose points for eating foods that you are better off without. That's it. It's not about calories or portion sizes, it's about making good choices that will lead to good habits.

My plan is to post every week with a breakdown of meals, workouts, costs, etc. I'll track my weight and take pictures of the food we actually eat. Maybe I'll make an awesome workout playlist and post that too. I'm documenting all of this so I can hold myself accountable week after week, because otherwise I won't last three days.

We're having friends over to watch the Super Bowl on Sunday, so we're hoping to get rid of some of the more tempting treats before we get down to business on Monday!

I'm nervous, but I'm excited. Wish me luck!


PS: If you have any good recipes, send them my way!

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