When I made the decision to sign up for Elite’s Team Weight Loss Challenge, I knew I wouldn’t be the grand-prize winner. In fact, I wasn’t even certain I would lose that much weight. But as I’ve grown to know many members and instructors at Elite Sports Clubs over the past year, I knew that my reasons for joining a team would be supported by my peers.
My primary reason for joining was to eat healthier. I knew I was in need of a change, when my regular go-to lunch was a Pepsi and my 2 year old’s Goldfish. I wish I was kidding, but I’m not. It’s not that I don’t care about what I eat. I do. I want to at least. But although being at home with my son allows me the privilege to come to Elite almost daily to get in a solid workout, I was getting lost in the everyday autopilot routine of caring for a toddler, resulting in mindless eating.
So when the time came time to sign up for Team Weight Loss Challenge, I took it as an opportunity to regain control of what I was putting into my body. I signed up with a good friend of mine, and I knew she’d hold me accountable. Amy was our coach, and although I had only taken a few classes with her, I was certain she’d follow up with my goals.
I even resorted to posting my decision to join the challenge on Facebook, which is pretty much the kiss of death for any failure or attempted excuse to back out. I expected to be challenged, held accountable for what I put in my mouth every day, and to stick to my word, regardless of the outcome.
There’s support all around you, even when you don’t see it.
For the challenge, I was placed on a team of 4. One was my friend who I had signed up with and the others were members from Elite whom I had never met. And despite all of our attempts, we never did meet in person. However, we were still there for each other. We exchanged emails almost daily, sharing triumphs, stumbles and even recipes! It’s equally humbling and inspiring that I was supported and encouraged by those who didn’t even know me. I learned that these women were just like me—mothers, daughters, professionals, wives—and at the end of the 6-week challenge, they became my friends.
Branching out of your (workout) comfort zone is good for you!
Team Weight Loss Challenge forced me to get out of my workout rut. I had the opportunity to take tennis lessons (which is way more of a workout than it sounds), try a treadmill class; I even went to a Pilates class, something I usually shy away from. I took this time as an opportunity to discover new ways to challenge my body and figured out what worked best for me.
A challenge doesn’t need to have an ending point.
During the 6-week challenge, I lost 4 lbs; an underwhelming conclusion to what I had hoped would result in an 8lb loss. But my greatest accomplishment by participating in the program was becoming a more mindful eater. It had been a while since I really cared about what I was eating and why. I even got my husband on board to eating healthier. (Now that’s a challenge!) I am grateful to the support received by acquaintances in classes, Elite staff, my friends, and my family.
And my greatest take-away is learning that my most challenging competitor on the road to health is myself.
Writer, marketer and mom, Susan Madden, has a background working with the Fine Arts in Dallas, TX and Milwaukee, WI. Relatively new to the fitness industry, she enjoys sharing her experiences about the craziness that is parenting and wellness from a novice perspective. She is a native of Whitefish Bay, WI and now resides in Mequon, WI with her husband Mike and children, Samantha and Blake.