I was scrolling though Instagram the other night and saw that Nicole Wilkins was starting a 30-day transformation challenge and that weigh-in’s were due the next day. The challenge gave a complete workout plan as well as a meal plan. I’ve been working out consistently, but haven’t been seeing the changes I wanted. And lately, I have felt like my eating needed to be cleaned up a little. So I decided to enter the challenge.
I sent my pictures and measurements in, and let’s just say this: “We are our own worst critics.” I mentioned the pictures to a friend and she said, “A lot of women would love to have your ‘before’ picture be their ‘after’.” Fair enough, but I still have work to do ;-).
The plan consists of five days of strength training and cardio, leaving two rest days. I had to switch up the Monday-Friday workout plan that was written and started the weights this past Sunday. Let me just say this: these workouts are INTENSE. It’s a lot of volume for each body part, which explains how sore I am, and that makes me excited to see what my day 30 pictures look like.
The meal plan was a little disappointing. Part of my reason for buying the challenge was that I thought a completed meal plan would save time when I’m writing out our grocery list. Less thinking on my part. It turns out that program gives you ONE DAY of a meal plan, with six meals for that day. I’m not sure if other women are using this as a template, or actually eating these six meals over and over again. It reminds me a lot of the Body for Life program that I did about 12 years ago. Basically, it’s six meals a day, balanced protein and “good” carbs (no white bread), and she adds in some healthy fats like avocado. I am tracking my meals on the myfitnesspal app. I have used the app for years, but hadn’t been as good at tracking everything lately. I’m getting much better. I like that the app will show you a breakdown of macros and tallies up the total protein, carb, and fat intake. I’ve found that I need more protein. I’ve been adding in a protein shake daily, and I will often have a protein bar for either breakfast or as a snack later in the day.
This challenge is actually helping me to not look at my weight, but rather to see how strong I am getting through lifting. I love lifting, but when I get busy it was often either skipped or shortened in order to fit in my cardio for the day. I don’t know why I did this, since I know how important strength training is. This program is helping to remind me of that. There are some moves that feel a little “weird” and they challenge my self-confidence in the gym. Yesterdays had jumping squats and jumping lunges in between some of the weight sets. I felt a little self-conscious doing them over in the free weight section at the gym at first, but did them anyways. Then I realized that no one really cares, they are all involved in their own workouts. Who knows? It may be inspiring them to try new moves or give them some new workout ideas.
Will I win? I have no idea. There are a lot of girls in their 20’s with better metabolisms and possibly more time. I’m not sure how many women are actually in the challenge. I have seen some of the pictures of other participants, and some women are already in amazing shape, which makes me think “Maybe I could at least be runner up…” There is one first place winner and two runner-ups. The first prize is a trip to Southern California to train with Nicole. The runner up prizes are $500, a 6-pack bag, and a polar heart rate monitor. My youngest son said, “I hope you win the runner up, because I want that heart rate monitor!” I think that the workout plan is definitely worth the money even if there isn’t a win.