You may have seen the 75 Hard Challenge floating around the interwebs lately. It has been around for a while but seems to have ramped up in popularity since COVID. That’s neither here nor there. This is a challenge where the end goal is mental fortitude. There seems to be added biproducts, like weight loss. So let’s get into this.
What is 75 Hard?
75 Hard is a list of daily behaviours that need to be done every single day for 75 days straight. Any deviation results in starting over to Day 1.
Workout Twice a day:
Every day you must work out twice. One of those must be outside (regardless of the weather). Some are saying they should be spaced no less than 3 hours apart. Each workout is a minimum of 45 minutes. The workouts will depend on your current fitness level. If you are not an athlete, and let’s face it, few of us are, you will not be performing 2 45 minute intense workouts. Walk outside, yoga, elliptical, dancing, whatever, find a workout that suits your current fitness level. Do not go out there and start doing plyometrics and ridiculous calisthenics if you can’t perform them properly. The risk of injury is high. Adapt to what you can.
Follow a diet:
Any diet. Just have a concrete plan that you will not deviate from for the entirety of the 75 days. This can be some sort of popular eating protocol like keto, paleo, whole-30 etc. Find something that suits your goals. If you want to gain weight, don’t plan a calorie deficit. And vise versa. There are no cheat days, and no alcohol. So, if your plan is to go keto and you ate 40% of your macros as carbs, well, guess what? You are starting over.
Drink 4L of Water:
Everyday you must consume a gallon (4 Litres) of water. This is plain water, not juice, not sports drink, water. Like from the tap.
Read 10 Pages of a Non-Fiction Book:
It may not seem like a lot but carving out the time to read 10 pages every single day. This cannot be an audio book. Yes, it has to be non-fiction. What that means to you. Some people are saying must be self-help or entrepreneurial, just pick a book and read it.
Take a daily progress picture. Post it or don’t, doesn’t matter. What matters is that you can reflect on the changes.
Learn more about 75 Hard from the creator:
75 Hard for Me:
Starts June 1st, 2021.
So for the challenge this is my plan:
I will be doing my weight training at the same schedule. 3 days on, 1 day off. On weight rest days I will be performing some other sort of workout, like heavy bag training, elliptical, rowing (there is no way I can row for 45 minutes), we will see what the rest days will look like.
The outdoor workout will be walking/jogging. This is my usual thing anyway so not much change other than committing to the jogging. I watch a friend of mine run by me the other day while on my walk and I was like “Damn, I wanna do that too.” So I am doing it too. Plus there are many other people in my circle that have taken up running, and I find it incredibly inspirational, so I am doing it too! We just have to hope my knees decide to cooperate.
One of these two work out will include ab specific exercises. I have been neglecting my abs lately and would like to put some more focus on them.
Added information for the workouts. If I am leading a class, regardless of how many calories or what my heart rate is at the time, it does not count toward my workouts.
How will this effect my step counting? Well, I am hoping to continue reaching my goal of 11,000 steps per day, so if I am short, I will be getting more steps in. That’s just the way it is.
So, here is where I am going to have some trouble. Not in the execution of the task but rather finding something I can stick to the entire time that has enough calories for me to increase my muscle mass and decrease my body fat percentage. Since I don’t know how many more calories my body will need with the increased expenditure, I am going to have to make a guess and hope it will be a good amount for me to not crash and burn.
The plan is going to be simple. I am not aiming for a specific macro nutrient distribution. I am going to create a maximum calorie consumption and a minimum protein requirement.
So 1650 kcal is the maximum daily. I am going into this feeling confident in that number, however, I am adding a wrinkle, if this is not sufficient to run my body on, I will up it but will keep the same idea of a maximum calorie consumption. I just know that if I start burning 3000 calories a day and am only eating say 1500, it is going to be bad. I will use my weight loss and muscle percentage to keep track. I will be consuming a minimum of 130 grams of protein daily.
To sum up: 1650 Calories a day made up of a minimum of 130 grams of protein.
I see we meet again, my arch nemesis. If there is one place that I see being the BIGGEST challenge for me, it is the water consumption. In case you have not been following my journey, water and I struggle to be together often enough. 4 Litres is a F*CK ton of water. I guess I will be peeing all the time. (might need to buy something to run with).
I am going to break this down into manageable increments. Say 4 shots of 1L at a time. I will set up timers and just basically hope for the best and make sure the majority of my water is consumed way before bedtime.
This part of the challenge works out really well because I have been wanting to add some reading time to my daily life. I have not decided which book I will be starting with, but since it begins tomorrow I better hurry up.
Shouldn’t be an issue for me.
Why Do 75 Hard?
This is not about weight loss. This is about creating a mental toughness that I lack in certain aspects of my life. I would like to gain the ability to do all the things. Right now, I am great with following eating plans, working out, those things that are necessary for weight loss. In the future, I want to be good at the things that will go beyond my wellness journey. Like marketing my business. Keeping my house clean (my house surfers when I “run out of time”). I would like to take control of my time management, and just all around prove to myself that this is something I can do. I am a sucker for a challenge.
For those of you thinking about joining on this challenge, please find your why. Like with weight loss, it is important to remember why you are doing this. This challenge is not meant to be sustainable. It is not meant to be something you implement in your daily life. It is a challenge to overcome. This is a sprint. Where as most things in life are a marathon.
There is not much to say other than water…. I am going to have a tough time there. The reading might prove to be a bigger challenge than I am giving it credit for right now, since it is something new to add in. Ultimately, I am excited to see how this will go and if I can make it the whole 75 days the first time around without starting over. Fingers crossed.
Be sure to follow my IG account for daily check ins. These will be in my stories (are they stories on Insta? I don’t even know. Might need a book on such things). I will try and cross-post on Facebook as well, and do recaps on Twitter.