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  • Tips on managing Stress
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  • Learn why "conventional" diets fail
  • How to target stubborn fat areas
  • Healthy and tasty recipes
  • What muscle soreness really means
  • Learn how exercise affects your mood
  • How to choose the right health club
  • Weight loss and diet myths revealed
  • Flexibility, how and when to stretch
  • How to build personal motivation
  • How to conquer procrastination
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Sign up to the get fit newsletter
Sign up for the ''Get Fit'' Newsletter
  • Tips on managing Stress
  • Ways to stay motivated
  • The benefits of resistance training
  • How to improve your metabolism
  • Learn why "conventional" diets fail
  • How to target stubborn fat areas
  • Healthy and tasty recipes
  • What muscle soreness really means
  • Learn how exercise affects your mood
  • How to choose the right health club
  • Weight loss and diet myths revealed
  • Flexibility, how and when to stretch
  • How to build personal motivation
  • How to conquer procrastination
Email:
Name:
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  • Give It a Month
    At the workplace, at your gym, or on social media, you’ve likely seen all sorts of 30-day fitness challenges advertised. But how do you find a good challenge, what should you know before starting, and will those 30 days of exercise finally make it stick? Read >>
Health and Fitness News

Give It a Month

Thinking of trying a 30-day fitness challenge? Here’s what you should know.

Will a 30-day commitment to exercise set you on the path to health and fitness? Maybe, but maybe not. At the workplace, at your gym, or on social media, you’ve likely seen all sorts of 30-day fitness challenges advertised. For thousands, these challenges have been the beginning of a lifelong commitment to fitness. Others have used challenges to reach a short-term fitness goal and some have attempted a challenge only to quit days later.

How do you find a good challenge, what should you know before starting, and will those 30 days of exercise finally make it stick?

Lasting Change

In the long run, one month of exercise really won’t make much of a difference in your overall health. You may lose a few pounds and gain a little muscle, but when the 30 days are over and you return to your former way of life, the pounds will quickly return.

A successful challenge is one that motivates you to make lifestyle changes that last. After your challenge, you have a choice to make. Will you go back to your sedentary lifestyle or continue to make exercise a part of your daily life? They say it takes 21 days to make new habits stick. The 30-day challenges add on another week for good measure.

A Successful Challenge

Research shows a successful challenge is one that has a clearly defined goal. As you begin the challenge, have a specific, measureable, achievable goal in mind.

Look for a challenge that’s laid out ahead of time and is easy to understand. You shouldn’t have to guess what each workout should look like. Either the workouts are simple enough to do on your own or they come with clear instructions. If your trainer doesn’t understand the challenge, move on.

You’re much likelier to complete a fitness challenge if you have the support and accountability of others. Your family, coworkers, personal trainer, and social media community can be powerful motivators. After you’ve committed to a challenge and told others about your goal, you don’t want to be seen as a quitter. When you do feel like quitting, your support system is there to cheer you on.

Types of Challenges

You can find a 30-day fitness challenge for just about anything. There are challenges for abs, squats, planks, lunges, push-ups, crunches, burpees, and arms. You can find challenges called “Beach Body” or “Little Black Dress.” Some challenges are extreme and others are designed for beginners. Choose accordingly.

Questions to Ask

Before starting a 30-day challenge, just like any other workout, it’s important to ask a few questions. Will the challenge help you reach your goal? Is it something you can maintain for the long run? Are you fit enough to do the exercises? Are there risks involved? Does the challenge follow strength training or cardio workout guidelines?

Before You Begin

There are a few things you can do to increase your chances of completing a 30-day fitness challenge. Before beginning the challenge, mark you calendar and set aside time each day in your schedule for your workout.

Second, plan to eat a healthy diet while doing your challenge. Don’t go on a strict 30-day diet challenge at the same time. Your body needs enough energy to fuel each workout. This means eating plenty of lean protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs and avoiding added sugars and processed junk food. Your diet should consist of fruits, vegetables, whole-grains, dairy, fish, poultry, nuts, seeds, and legumes.

Got these essentials in place? Then find the challenge that helps you go where you want to be and get to work!