Another 8 weeks have come and gone and I find myself at the finish line of another round of the Whole Life Challenge. It’s amazing – even though I’ve done this challenge several times, I always learn something new about myself, about my habits, and about what I want my future to look like.

This round of the WLC was probably one of the most difficult ones for me. The habits themselves were not difficult. Rather, my mind was preoccupied by a lot of different stresses. From my own health, to worries about family, stresses over deadlines, and illness/injury, I experienced a level of stress over the past 8 weeks that I hadn’t experienced in a long time. That anxiety made the challenge tougher emotionally for me. However, as always, I come out feeling much better for having participated and am moving forward with greater resolve.

Here are the positive realizations and outcomes of the past 8 weeks of the WLC:

  1. No matter how time consuming it is scheduling in meal planning, grocery shopping, and meal prep into my weekly routine has been invaluable.
  2. Keeping my meals simple and repetitive helps me stay on track. Having the same salad for lunch for weeks on end may seem boring, but the convenience of it makes it worthwhile — plus it’s tasty!
  3. Sometimes staying on track with my food and fitness is tough, but I know that I am not alone in facing these challenges. Having a supportive, encouraging team (Worldwide Warriors) made a huge difference.
  4. Having a ‘perfect‘ day doesn’t mean having a perfect score — it means making the best of your circumstances on that day and being happy and proud of what you were able to accomplish.
  5. Unfortunately, I experience quite a bit of pain on a daily basis, which means that some days even walking is difficult. Knowing that I have some debilitating days makes me value the days I feel good. I have learned how to measure and interpret my pain. If my pain is a 7/10 or lower, I make sure to push through. It’s never easy, but it is always worth it. I learned to make sure I give myself opportunities to succeed. The feeling of accomplishment always outweighs the pain.
  6. Things don’t always go according to plan — so having a back-up plan has saved me on many occasions. From home cooked meals that I’ve cooked in big batches and frozen to a list of 10 minute EMOMs that I can complete at home for my workout of the day if needed, back-up plans make sure I don’t have an excuse to not get things done.
  7. It’s ok to rest and take a break – as long as you don’t stop working towards your goals. Giving myself permission to not be perfect and to just relax and take a break is absolutely ok.

The biggest realization:

8. No matter how busy my day, I can ALWAYS afford to hit pause for 10 minutes and use it for myself – whether it’s to meditate, catch up with old friends, get lost in a book, or just sleep! I know that I cannot take care of other people/things if I don’t take care of myself first.

So that wraps up this round of the Whole Life Challenge. I wanted to say a big thank you to the WLC organizers and all the members of my Worldwide Warriors team. The team will definitely be back for January’s challenge so stay tuned – we’d love to have you with us!

In the meantime, keep working towards your goals. Drink water. Stay active. Still plan your meals and prep your food – the more often you do it, the easier it will be to maintain the habit and truly make it part of your lifestyle. Keep mobilizing and make sleep a priority. Most of all, be kind – to others and yourself!

See you in January!!