Saturday, December 29, 2012

Family Fitness Challenge, Part 2

Two years ago, I posted about the first round of the Fitness Challenge my family was doing. Since then, we've done several rounds, and modified it a bit. I think the round we just finished was either our fourth or fifth, and we've tweaked some things each time. So I thought I'd do another post about the changes we've made, in case anyone is interested in doing something like this with their family.

The basic set-up of the challenge has pretty much remained the same. Everyone pays in at the beginning to a Paypal account (usually $30-$40 per person, per round). Then we track daily and weekly points, and the winners at the end split the money. We've done the challenges anywhere from 7 to 10 weeks. In my opinion, 8 weeks is about perfect.

Here is how we do our Healthy Habits points:

Daily Points
*5 servings of fruits/veggies: 2 pts.
*No eating within 2 hours of bedtime: 2 pts.
*Check in with partner via call, text, or Facebook: 2 pts.
*48 oz. water: 2 pts.
*No treats: 2 pts. *You are allowed 1 SMALL treat (the size of your thumb or smaller OR 100 calories worth) per day without losing your 2 points *A treat is defined as candy, cake, cookies, chocolate, pastries, ice cream/frozen yogurt. You may have a reasonably-sized piece of cake on a family member’s birthday or wedding without it counting against your points. Whole fruit popsicles and jello are allowed and not counted as “treats.”*You are allowed one "free day" per week where you can have a treat without it counting against you
Total Daily Points Possible: 68 (10 per day, times 7 days, minus 2 for the "free" treat day)

Weekly Points
Minimum 100 min. of exercise during the week: 10 pts.
Each additional 30 minutes of exercise: 1 pt. (up to 5 additional points)
Weight loss: 1 point for each tenth of a percent of your original weight lost each week, rounded to the tenths place (so if you lost .25% of your original weight in one week, you would get 2.5 points).You can't lose the "same weight" twice, so you have to drop below your previous lowest weight in the challenge to earn weight loss points.

We have a private Facebook page set up to track points, chat, share recipes, etc. We report our points there each week, and on a spreadsheet I set up through Google Docs. At the end of the challenge, we usually have 1-3 overall winners, and 1-2 winners for just straight weight loss. This time we also had a participation prize, just for someone who tracked points all the way to the end, but wasn't one of the leaders.

I have really come to love our Family Fitness Challenges. It's fun to have the moral support of my family members, and it's a fun way to get to know family members who live far away. Not sure if I've left anything out of my description here, but if you have any questions, just leave them in the comments!

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