Guys. It’s the 21st. We’re almost done with October. Know what that means?!? I’m almost done with #TIU31! Committing to this challenge this month has been paramount in my getting back on track with a consistent fitness regimen, and I’m feeling stronger and healthier than I have in awhile. It’s pretty great. 🙂 Missed out on getting involved this time around? No worries. There’s only one real week left of the challenge, but K&K have recently become notorious for repeating their challenges back-to-back, so there’s a pretty decent chance that #TIU31 round two will be coming up sooner rather than later. If you’ve been wary about committing to a month-long fitness challenge because you’re concerned that it might not be doable for whatever reason, don’t be! Just jump in. Here are four ways I modified the Tone It Up 31 Day Challenge to work for me…maybe these mods will work for you, too!
- Follow the workouts first, try recipes that sound intriguing, but don’t be a slave to the meal plan.
One of the major benefits of being a Tone It Up team member is having access to the nutrition plan. Beyond the standard edition of said plan, members are also treated to seasonal updates and special editions that include specific meal-by-meal guidelines for the duration of each challenge. The 31 Day Challenge edition of the plan included a meal plan and a myriad of seasonal recipes, both of which were awesome. I just can’t follow a meal plan for more than a week, though. Beyond getting bored easily, I need freedom and flexibility when it comes to eating, so challenge-long meal plans tend to make me a little nutty. Needless to say, I decided not to follow the meal plan for TIU31. I DID take advantage of the yummy recipes they supplied, though! The pumpkin donut holes, “Fall In Love” kale salad, and pb&j smoothie are especially delicious. I’ve also embraced that lean-clean-green life and have outlawed fried an processed foods in keeping with the challenge guidelines.
- Break up the 31-rep-challenge moves throughout the day.
I’ll admit it: when I first read about the 31-rep-challenge that’s part of #TIU31, I thought it seemed super simple and kind of lame. The joke was definitely on me, though, because those five daily moves? KILLER. Hitting 31 reps of said five moves is actually a workout in and of itself, and they’re typically paired with a video workout from the Tone It Up library + a daily allotment of cardio. It’s a lot of work! To make completing the day’s assigned workouts a little easier, I split up each element throughout the day. My morning workout, for example, is always cardio. If I do a TIU video, it happens sometime around lunch, with 16 reps of the daily moves. The last 15 reps? I usually squeeze them in just before bed. Sometimes I feel like I’m working out ALL day, but doing a little bit at once is so much easier for me mentally (and physically, TBH,) than tackling cardio + a workout video + the 31-rep-challenge moves all at once first thing every morning. And hey, getting lil endorphin rushes throughout the day doesn’t suck!
- Trade wine for treats.
I really don’t drink, so the whole “Wine Not Wednesday” thing that this challenge includes and encourages really doesn’t do anything for me. Instead of downing a glass of red or sipping on a margarita, I have a sweet treat. Why miss an opportunity to treat myself just because MY treat isn’t the alcoholic variety?! I’ll take a hot chocolate overflowing with marshmallows or a cookie, please. It’s my preferred form of indulgence.
- Don’t live and die by the schedule.
While I’m a fan of following a workout schedule, I’m also one of those people who gets discouraged by not being on track. Progress and consistency are what’s really important in any fitness plan, though, so there’s no use in getting down on yourself because you weren’t able to follow a pre-assigned schedule–one that was made with zero knowledge of your own schedule, commitments, or LIFE in mind–perfectly from day one! Cut yourself some slack, girl! Tone It Up started promoting this challenge a few weeks before it actually began, and since we were given a start and end date, I looked ahead and knew that I’d be missing a few workouts and not eating “on plan” for a few days due to family obligations and I was able to adjust accordingly. Other times, I was too sore from the previous day’s workout to complete the daily moves, so I either doubled up the next day or skipped them all together! Oh, and some days I just didn’t feel like doing anything beyond running a 5k, so I swapped my Friday leg day workout for Sunday’s #sundayrunday. Bottom line: it’s totally fine to make the challenge fit into your life instead of making your life fit into the confines of the challenge. Do what works for you!