Last Updated on July 26, 2022 by Michael Brockbank
I’m back from my short vacation and feel inspired and motivated to try the 12-week fitness challenge again. This will be, what, my fifth attempt? But that’s OK. Success has more to do with how you persevere than with how you triumph.
The reason I keep putting myself through these is because I keep getting closer and closer to my goals. With each failed attempt, I learn something new that helps fuel the next.
Since I am driven by self-improvement, I’ll keep giving these a shot until I am able to complete the entire 12 weeks without skipping a day.
Why I Keep Challenging Myself in Fitness
I am always challenging myself in a variety of ways. From pushing the envelope to see how much I can write in a month to improving my physical prowess, I am constantly trying to set the bar higher.
That’s because I’m not content with just doing the bare minimum to survive. I want more out of myself, such as publishing books or getting into good enough shape to climb a hill without getting winded.
As such, I come up with various challenges that pique my interest. In this case, I want to see what I can do to myself within a 12-week time frame.
Mostly, I just want to be in the best shape of my entire life. Sadly, I’m pretty close to that already. So, anything beyond what I do after hitting 210 pounds is icing on this beefcake.
Seriously, though, I’ve never been known for putting effort into fitness. Most of my life was pretty sedentary until recently. Pushing myself into these challenges is simply self-improvement to the Nth degree.
What Am I Doing This Time Around?
Not much is going to change this time as opposed to my recent attempts. Most of all because I want to demonstrate that my Net 600 calorie diet works and how increasing physical activity can shed the fat.
After all, these are pretty much the steps I took to lose the first 80 pounds and have kept them off.
Tracking Everything in the Spreadsheet
Again, I’m using my 12-week fitness challenge spreadsheet. You can access the page by using the nav bar at the top.
The idea is to keep track of calories in, calories out, the amount of activity I do in a day, and the number of steps that I accumulate. The spreadsheet also estimates my end weight based on current performance.
When you keep track of such metrics, you can start to see certain patterns emerge based on your food choices and activity. For instance, last time, I found that if I was able to get more than 13,000 steps per day and kept my intake below 2,000 calories, I would drop a pound the next day.
You can find out all kinds of information about yourself when you keep track of data.
Sticking with Net 600 Calories
I know my Net 600 calorie diet works. It’s not restrictive aside from making sure that I stay physical enough to burn what I eat. The hardest part is to keep the right mindset.
Of course, that’s true no matter what diet you try.
The best diet for you is the one you can maintain for the long term. Everyone is different and has unique needs and wants. Depending on what you’re going for, some diets are simply going to work better than others.
Nonetheless, it all comes down to what diet you are able to maintain. It’s more about personal preference than the experiences of others.
Emphasizing Breaking Personal Records
This time around, I’m making a list of personal exercise records I want to break. For example, I’m looking forward to setting a new personal record for push-ups.
For this, I use Exercise.com. It’s not the glorious app it was back in the day, but it does a good job at keeping track of my personal bests.
I would like to set new records for every exercise. But that will depend on whether I remember and the type of activities I do throughout the week.
Training for Crossing Colorado in the Spring
One of my goals is to cross the entire state of Colorado on a bicycle. Hence why I named this blog. I figured that I could attempt my ride in the spring of next year, so, I have a lot of training to do.
The hardest part is making sure I don’t get overheated. I’ve never been able to handle heat very well and am prone to heat exhaustion and stroke. That’s why I want to try when the temperatures are much lower.
At any rate, I have a lot of cycling to do over the coming months if I want to cross Colorado in a three-day window.
For this, I’m going to start using Runkeeper more often. It’s a distance tracking app that shows your progress using GPS mapping. I haven’t used it much over the last few years, mostly because I simply walk around in the backyard.
What Am I Using for Motivation for the Next 12 Weeks?
OK, I have a plan for what I am doing over the next few months. But what is driving my motivation to keep an eye on my data? I need to find something that will fuel my ambition when I get up in the mornings.
Putting Together More Content
One of the biggest motivators is fixing up this website. I would love to get it to the 200+ visits it was getting per day back in 2018. For that, though, I’m going to need more content and updated materials.
This means more reviews, tutorials, lists, and anything else I can think of over the next 12 months.
The 12-week fitness challenge should provide a slew of data perfect for putting together a variety of articles. This isn’t to mention any products I use or exercises I try throughout the challenge.
In the end, keeping up with this challenge will help me come up with quite an extensive list of blog posts and videos.
Halloween Costume Ideas
I still would love to dress up as a superhero for Halloween. Well, at least without using padded or painted-on muscles. An example of this would be covering myself in latex to be Venom.
Right now, it would resemble more of a garden trash bag.
We’ll have to see, though. There are a lot of ideas running through my head about what to be for Halloween.
The point, though, is to actually fill a role with natural development and by losing weight.
Bringing Back the Christmas Calendar Idea?
Last year, I was going to make a Christmas calendar for a friend of mine. And I’ve been thinking about bringing that idea back and moving forward with it.
Especially since I’ve had offers from people to take the photographs.
Essentially, I want to make a firefighter-esque calendar but pose using elements that focus more on writing. Instead of wielding a firehose, it would be a book and perhaps a feathered quill.
My friend would greatly appreciate the angle…no pun intended.
Something like that would take a great deal of commitment, which means I would have to bring my A-game for the next few months.
Demonstrating VShred is Full of Crap
I am extremely against V Shred and his nonsensical ramblings about losing weight and getting fit. His commercials and products are north of cringey and very little of the information he shares is anywhere near a scientific stance.
In other words, he’s preying on those who have low self-esteem to sell a product. The commercials themselves and his products aren’t what rubs me the wrong way, though.
Companies often twist information, facts, and data to suit their needs to make a sale.
It’s how he comes across as an “expert” while spreading misinformation. As I am a man based in science, it infuriates me to no end when jack-holes like this take to YouTube or Tik Tok.
Anyway, my entire regimen is completely centered around the exact opposite of what he pushes. So, I’m going to demonstrate that you don’t need special products or “fitness plans” to get where you want to be.
Demonstrating Will Smith is Full of Crap
Something else that pulled my trigger was Will Smith’s 20 Pounds in 20 Weeks videos. He couldn’t lose the weight and fell apart towards the end.
I kind of feel bad for him, really. He looks like a broken man, nowadays.
At any rate, the idea is to show that you don’t need Will Smith’s money or his trainer to lose 20 pounds in 20 weeks. In fact, I know I can lose it in far less time. As it stands, I’m already on track to lose more than 30 in 12 weeks.
How Confident Am I That I’ll Finish?
I know I said I was pretty confident last time and felt good about completing the 12-week fitness challenge. And I feel much the same today as I did back then.
This time, though, I have a lot of things I want to get done before the end of the year. Most of this relies on being able to sustain myself and finish the challenge outright.
As long as I can avoid the “fuck-its,” I should be good to go.
Right now, I’m just taking each day one at a time and focusing on what I can do right now to get where I want to be. I can’t let external influences take away from the accomplishment.
And I need to keep myself afraid of seeing the calorie count go negative on MyFitnessPal.
I think my biggest hang-up is going to be remembering to do certain workouts or exercises on specific days. For example, will I be able to use the Stealth Board for 28 days straight? I don’t know…I’ve already forgotten that I wanted to use it today before lunch.
I guess we’ll just have to see what I can accomplish before October 17th.
How Do You Challenge Yourself Every Week?
Challenges are part of what got me to where I am today, both physically and mentally. Challenges are what turned me into a successful freelance writer, helped me lose more than 80 pounds, and assisted with publishing my first book.
So much good has come from them that I’ll keep finding new ways to push myself even after I complete a 12-week fitness routine.
What kind of ways do you challenge yourself or keep motivated for what you want?