A Healthy Competition: #100DayChallenge

Before and after, left to right: Donna Abel, Mark Cox and myself.

As many of you seem to have noticed, my recent photographs indicate some success with dieting! Thank you for all the positive comments. Lots of people have asked me to share the secrets of my success. So, here goes!

In September 2016, I found myself struggling to persuade a pair of trousers to circumnavigate my girth. Again. This time though, unusually, I decided that I ought to do something about it!

My first meeting of that day was with Mark Cox, a close colleague and the Chief Operating Officer of our Society. I politely hinted that was casting a fair shadow of his own, and there and then we dreamt up our own #100DayChallenge.

We agreed a joint target to lose 13% of our body weight and signed up to have weekly weigh ins to track our progress. We also designed a couple of penalties that neither of us wanted to suffer in case we failed to achieve our targets!

Two weeks later, attracted by the competitive nature of this challenge, we were joined by Donna Abel, our Chief HR Officer, who was also looking slightly rounder than she was earlier in her career!

When the last weigh in day finally arrived on 14th December, we had all achieved spectacular results, far exceeding the initial targets we had set ourselves.

Personally, this challenge was the first time I had ever discovered the recipe to motivate myself, putting my health and wellbeing before, or at least on an even keel, to other parts of my life. Whilst I’m slightly nervous about being labelled ‘converted,’ lots of people have asked me why our #100DayChallenge was such a huge success, when so many other diets proved to be little more than fads.

The answer, for me at least, was finding a way of combining something that I was not very good at e.g. dieting and focusing on my health, with something that I was very motivated by. In my case, this was competition. I have always been competitive, and the prospect of losing to either Mark or Donna was utterly unthinkable! The exercise, porridge for breakfast, portion control, and self-discipline were only really by-products of the journey. I regret that my competiveness is not a very endearing quality, but I simply hate to lose - especially to those two!

Spurred on by the results we achieved, I’m thrilled that several of my colleagues have also now embarked on their own #100DayChallenge and are already showing great progress. A number of my business contacts have signed up too. Now two weeks into the challenge, they have lost five stone between them!

Here they are:

Left to right: Lee Saxon (T&G Limited), Johnny Moffett (T&G Limited), Ian McDonald (Axis Mason), Pamela Dohert (Mourant Ozannes), Cass Philip (Mourant Ozannes), Kenny McDonald (Channel Islands Co-operative Society, Ian Bashforth (Chairman, T&G Group), Chris Clifford (Private & Public.

Instilling this competitive element into a programme to promote wellness has turned out to be a recipe that has worked, and is still working for all of us.

Celebrating after the final weigh in

Wellness is important. The pace of life shows no sign of relenting, and all too often we relegate our own health to the ‘too busy’ pile. I know, because I was guilty of this too before our #100DayChallenge!

If you have something positive that you ought to do but can’t seem to get around to, try applying some friendly competition. It might just work for you too!

I’m looking forward to sharing the types of things we are doing at your Society to promote wellness in the workplace in my next blog.

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