The truth of the matter is I’m no longer waking up at 4:30 am to squeeze in my workouts.  With Kaiden waking up every 2-3 hours EVERY night for the past few months, I decided to prioritize sleep over exercise.  This is not to say I’ve stopped working out altogether.  Even though I don’t love evening workouts, I found a way to get to the gym (or do Barre3 Online!) a few times a week after Kaiden went down for the night…errr…few hours.  I’m also choosing to walk to work on the days I go into the office instead of taking an Uber or the train.  Unless the temperature is in the teens, you’ll find me making that 1.2 mile commute by foot.

Now here’s the thing, my workout standards are A LOT lower than they used to be.  Lately, I’ve been reading old MIS posts, and even though I didn’t feel this way back then, I’m amazed by how dedicated to exercise I used to be.  Again, this isn’t to say that I don’t love it anymore or that I’m not motivated, but time/sleep/sickness all play a much bigger role in my life than they used to.  And sometimes exercise falls to the bottom of the priority list.

So what are my standards now?  Well, for one, workouts max out at 30-35.  And two, my goal is to fit in 3 maybe 4 workouts a week.  I try to make each one count, but sometimes, the goal is to solely move in whatever way feels good and makes sense.

Other things I know a lot of people, mamas or not, struggle with when it comes to exercise are time, guilt, motivation, etc. Been there, done that with all of those plus some…

…insert the brilliant idea to host a year-long fitness challenge!

Now, I can’t take credit for the idea at all.  All the credit goes to our friends Kartik and Rathna.  Back in October, Rathna sent an email to a bunch of people and asked if anyone was interested in joining a year-long fitness challenge group.  Of course, I immediately replied with an enthusiastic yes!  This is exactly what I needed to get my butt to the gym consistently.

Year-long workout challenge spreadsheet

Our group’s challenge works in the following way (taken from Rathna’s original email)…

Challenge – Workout 12 times a month (even if you do multiple workouts a day, you only get credit for one) for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Results – If you hit the 12 workouts (or more), great!  If you don’t, you owe $10 to each person in the group who did.

What’s a workout? – Moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity. This can include a run, weight training, a fitness class, yoga, outdoor activities such as hiking/biking/walking.  It has to be a solid workout for at least 30 minutes.

How is it tracked? – Via a Google spreadsheet where everyone inputs their workouts using the honor system.

Fun fact #1 – If I recall correctly, I’ve already made $40 by being a part of this challenge!  Ha!

Fun fact #2 – I read Rathna’s initial email so quickly (in true Parita fashion) that I missed the whole part about this being a year-long challenge.  I thought it was only for the month of October.  It took someone commenting on me doing this as a new mom for me to pull up the email again and read it again…carefully.  Ha!

If you need a little extra motivation to workout, I highly recommend starting a challenge like this one.  The idea of losing $$$ only because I didn’t work out kills me, so I don’t let it happen.  Also, I like being the newish mom in the group who gets her 12 (usually more!) workouts every month!

Your turn – have you taken part in a fitness challenge like this?  Would it be enough to keep you motivated?

By Parita

9 thoughts on “How to Get Your Butt to the Gym Consistently – Join a Year-Long Fitness Challenge”
  1. I am not sure if I am up for this challenge but I really want to achieve long-time fitness for the sake of my back. I guess I have to save this on my pins to track the dates. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Good article. I feel boost up to restart my gym again after reading this article. I think this is the main success to write this blog. When you can motivate your reader by your writing, what could be better than that? Thank you so much for sharing such a nice article. Keep it up 🙂

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