The 30-Day Exercise Challenge

“A bear, however hard he tries, grows tubby without exercise.” ~A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

Jillian Michaels

Three years ago, before I became a mother for the second time, I lamented outlined, ad infinitum, my travails with a one, Ms. Jillian Michaels. If, for some reason, you are in a position to need a recap, please explore the following links. And God bless you for taking the time and energy to do so.

The 30-Day Shred, Day 10: I’m Not Dead Yet, But It’s Still a Possibility

The 30-Day Shred: The Results Post

Shredding FAQ’s

Around three months ago, two months after aforementioned baby turned 2, I decided to shed the baby weight. It was time. I mean, the little bugger’s practically shaving at this point. Anyway, I enlisted the help of a new-to-me eating plan, Trim Healthy Mama, a version of carb cycling. Though I have been on nearly every diet known to (wo)man, this plan is the only one that has ever made me immediately feel better, in addition to losing weight. And, while I was having great success in eating well, I was struggling to incorporate exercise. Translation: I was sitting on the couch enjoying Rocky marathons on AMC.  Seriously.

Does watching another human being exercise count for anything? Well, it should.

It was then that I remembered the rousing success I’d had with The Shred and went on the hunt for my DVD. Though we’ve moved to another state since my last Shredding episode, I easily located it on the DVD shelf. Dang, I thought it had gotten “lost” in the move. Thanks a lot, Lord. Anyway, I popped that sucker into the Blu-Ray player and turned it on…then sat on the couch and watched her go. Boy, was I exhausted! I was hoping she was going to jump out of the TV and bring me a bottle of water or something. I was some kind of thirsty! I mean. Right then, I knew that, if I was going to have any current success facing this woman again, I was going to need to enlist an army of supporters.

And so The 30-Day Exercise Challenge Facebook group was born.

This growing group, consisting of women who are THMers, Carb Cyclers, Shredders, T-Tappers, teenagers, moms, grandmoms, big, little, fit, not-so-much (me),  and from all corners of the globe has become a squadron of exercising soldiers who offer the utmost level of support and encouragement, mixed with a little humor. I mean, really. Sometimes jumping jacks make you pee a little. It’s a thing.

Our upcoming challenge begins on August 4 and continues through September 13. The goal is to exercise 5 days per week (M-F), in whatever way is best for you. I’ll be Shredding. And talking to Jesus. Mostly talking to Jesus. Amen.

For those of us who are Shredding, here is the schedule:

BEFORE: weigh (once you weigh, stay off the scale until the halfway point…trust me on this), measure everything (calves, thighs, hips, belly, waist, bust, arms, neck) and take pictures (front, back, both sides)

August 4-8: Level One daily (Day three’s the worst…push through the wall, if you’re still able to walk.)
August 11-15: Level One daily, a brisk walk or other cardio later, if you’ve got it in you
August 18-22: Level Two daily

HALFWAY: weigh, measure and take pics (put the scale away until the end)

August 25-29: Level Two daily, cardio later if you’re still on your feet
September 1-5: Celebrate Labor Day by ushering in Level Three!
September 8-12: Level Three daily and, later, cardio if you can

AFTER (September 13): weigh, measure and take pics. Resist the urge to look in the mirror and say, “You’re a sexy beast!” You may scare the children.

My sweet friend, Kerry, developed this form to help us keep track of all of this information: THM 30-Day Challenge Sheets . You can add your weights on there where you want, but I think you’ll find the measurements to be more impressive.

We’ll be posting every day throughout The Challenge for support, encouragement, obstacle-busting, prayer requests (lots!) and such. Also, we’ll be so grateful to see all the before/after posts, both at the halfway point and at the end! Then, we can eat cake! Wait, what? Sorry. I thought I was posting about my Cake Eating Facebook group there for a minute. Wrong group.

And once this challenge is done, I’m planning to propose the next one. I already have something in mind. Mwahaha!

If you want in on this action, simply send a request to join The 30-Day Exercise Challenge Facebook group. There’re nearly two weeks prior to the start for you to get ready. If you want to Shred, you’ll need the DVD and some hand weights. I started with 2 pounders and worked my way up to 5 before; however, soup cans work great. You’ll also need a pair of tennis shoes and a tight sports bra. Ain’t nobody got time to go to The WalMart with two black eyes. If the floor where you’ll be exercising is hard, a mat of some type is helpful. Ab work, man. I work out on carpet with a sweat-wiping towel nearby. Tight, Spandex-type workout pants are useful, too, unless you want to do the workout 4 or 5 times from the jiggle aftershocks. However, they are not necessary. Duct tape would work just as well, I guess.

I know people say this, but I mean it. For reals. If I can do this, anybody can. Come on. Turn off Rocky, get off the couch, get prayed up, and join the party!


Don’t be left out! Sign up to receive the email notifications every time an update occurs. Just enter your email address in the appropriate box on the right-hand side of the blog to stay up-to-date on, not only The 30-Day Exercise Challenge, but also great recipes, homeschooling tips, remodeling/decorating madness (black doors?) and general hilarity!

UP NEXT: Summer-Fresh Broccoli Salad, a THM-S side dish. Y’all, I don’t like broccoli. I think it smells like feet. But I eat the heck out of this stuff. It’s low-carb goodness!

IN THE MEANTIME: Enjoy this hilarious little post from days gone by…An Unwelcome Visitor.


15 thoughts on “The 30-Day Exercise Challenge

  1. For anyone worried (making excuses) that they can’t join the fun because you can’t get the DVD, you can find level one on Utube. 🙂 I can’t seem to get past that level anyway!… old knees you know!


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  8. Great blog, you are a really great writer! Today, I stumbled upon your blog from a few years ago, and thought it was very encouraging. This is as well. I ordered the 30 Day Shred, and I should get it this week. I’m planning on starting it next week AFTER we get home from Disney. I’m really excited about it, and you have encouraged me very much! Thanks so much!


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