Welcome to Black Women Losing Weight’s July Challenge! It’s time for a Tune Up, Ladies!
Challenge Goal: Spend 15 days taking a deep dive into why you want to change your lifestyle. We will go beyond just food and fitness. This month, we will explore the factors that are hindering our happiness and keeping us from being consistent when it comes to healthy habits. This self guided challenge will begin on July 1st. (No sign up required – We will check-in every morning on Facebook and Instagram – July 1 – 15)
Each day, you will start your journal entry by answering this question: What do I want this day to bring? – Set an intention for the day. (Examples: Peace, contentment, a raise, safe travels, greater focus, more energy, clarity, opportunities, love, etc.)
Daily Journal Prompts: You’ll find detailed instructions for each journal entry below. We’ve also provided a printable calendar.
It goes without saying that you’ll need a journal/notebook for this challenge. Consider buying a special journal with something inspirational on the cover, or one with beautiful pages. If not, any notebook will do…or you can use your computer for a digital journal. Our hope is that this journal with be a catalyst in your exploration of your motivations, habits and what drives you. We want you to dig through the challenging areas of life, find your strength and find the solutions that you seek. We want you to take action and get lasting results.
During this challenge…
- Don’t be afraid to be uncomfortable. – Take a break from your comfort zone and allow yourself to be challenged. Be open to seeking out new ideas and researching new answers.
- Connect to a higher power – You may be faced with some painful or stressful thoughts, concepts and/or memories during this time. Things like prayer, meditation or devotional reading can help. Do what works for you.
- Cut back on any foods or drinks that you have an unhealthy relationship with. – These foods may be numbing your senses and helping you to ignore your feelings. You need to investigate some potentially uncomfortable places and feel some uncomfortable feelings during this challenge. Don’t numb yourself.
Click to Tweet: “I joined the Healthy Mindset Tune Up Challenge hosted by @blackweightloss! www.blackweightlosssuccess.com/healthy-mindset-tuneup/ #BWLW #getyourmindright #mindset”
Click here to download this month’s printable calendar. (PDF file)
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Daily Journal Entry Topics
Day 1 – You have goals, but are they S.M.A.R.T? – Write down your goals in your journal and break them down according to the S.M.A.R.T goals protocol.
- Specific – What do you want to do, exactly? Make your goals specific and not vague. For example: “I will lose weight this year.” vs. “I will lose 30 pounds in the next five months.”
- Measurable – How will you know when you’ve reached your goal? You can get on the scale or use progress photos to measure your weight loss, but what about your other goals? Examples: Will you need to have blood work done to know whether your health has improved? Will you need to keep a journal of your eating habits to find out if your stress eating has improved?
- Attainable – Are your goals realistic? Here are some questions you could ask yourself; Are you setting yourself up for failure by focusing on unrealistic time frames and striving for quick results. Are you setting your goals too low and not challenging yourself? Are you genuinely willing to do what you will have to do to reach your stated goals? (This is an area where research is your friend. Look for answers online.)
- Relevant – How does this goal fit into your overall lifestyle? Does the goal make sense when it comes to family life, work life, other goals, and responsibilities? For example: If you know that you have a busy schedule, should you make a goal to go to the gym six days a week, or would it make more sense to workout at home?
- Time-Sensitive – Does your goal have a starting date and an end date? Are your time frames realistic? How does time-management and planning figure into you reaching your goal?
Day 2 – Give yourself some credit. – Make a list of all the ways you are currently working to not only lose weight or get fit but to improve your life in general. Recommit to these actions if you need to.
Day 3 – Make a list of at least four new practical actions you will commit to for the next 12 days that will help you get closer to your goals. – What are the habits you need to get rid of and replace with more positive habits? Here are some examples of the questions you may ask yourself:
- What negative thought patterns do I need to break?
- Do I need to create a shopping list before I go food shopping?
- Should I start meal prepping on Sundays?
- Am I working out as intensely as I could be?
- Should I mix up my workout routine with some new moves?
Day 4 – Make a list of the unhealthy foods you need to give up. Then, take some time to think of the reasons why you don’t want to let go of these foods. Take time to explore your reasons in your journal.
- How do they make you feel?
- Are they connected to happy memories or loved ones?
- Do these foods love and comfort you? Do you have a connection to these foods, beyond just taste?
- Has eating before a reaction to stress and pain instead of a response to hunger?
Day 5 – Make a “Makes Me Happy” list.– Create a list in your journal of the things that make you happy. During the next 10 days of this challenge, commit to enjoying at least 5 of these things. Examples:
- What do you love to do?
- What places do you love to go?
- What books do you love to read?
- What experiences make you happy?
Day 6 – Make a list of the healthy foods you’re not eating.– Ask yourself the question: If you know these foods are beneficial, why are you not eating these foods? Preference, cost, etc.? If there are hindrances, how can you overcome them? There are solutions, like new recipes, shopping with coupons, spending less money on unhealthy foods, etc.
Day 7 – Make a list of 5 outfits in your wardrobe that make you feel beautiful. – Are you wearing clothes that don’t fit? Are you holding on to clothes that are too big… maybe out of a fear that you will gain the weight back? It is time to do some spring cleaning. There are lots of organizations you can donate to and help others. Consider cleaning out your closet.
Day 8 – Create a list of 10 healthy recipes that you will try in the next 30 days.– Create a new bookmark folder in your web browser and save the ten links. Also, write down the name of each recipe in your journal. As you prepare each recipe, return to your journal, and write down the date that you ate each meal. Prepare at least 2 of these recipes during the rest of this challenge. Preparing your own healthy meals is a great way to control your eating habits. Take pride in the care you take to prepare these meals for yourself.
Day 9 – Why is your health important? – Write in your journal about how health issues/disease is impacting your life? If you don’t have any current health issues, consider how illness, disease, or unhealthy lifestyles have affected your friends, family, or loved ones.
- How would your family be impacted if you became ill due to unhealthy choices or habits?
- How will your family benefit from you living a healthier lifestyle?
Day 10 – Make a list of all the people who support you. – Buy blank thank you cards and give at least 3 of these people a handwritten note of thanks.
Day 11 – Make a list of at least six excuses you’ve used in the past to avoid any of the following;
- eating right
- making yourself a priority
- going to the doctor
- losing weight
Commit today to stop using those excuses going forward.
Day 12 – Write a congratulations letter to yourself, in advance, expressing how happy and proud you will be when you reach your goals. – Take a current photo to go along with the letter. Put the letter and photo in an envelope and tape it to the back of your journal/notebook for safe keeping.
Day 13 – Is social media helping you or hindering you?– Create a “pros and cons” list in your journal and list how social media is helping or hurting you.
- Are the social media profiles you follow adding to your life?
- Do you feel less than because you don’t look like the fitness and health influencers you follow or do they inspire you to do better?
- Do you need to take a break from social media in general because it stresses you out?
Day 14 – What is stressing you out? What is causing you physical or mental pain?– 1) Make a list and be very, very honest with yourself. 2) Make a list of possible solutions that can relieve your stress and pain.
For many people, overeating and an unhealthy lifestyle is just a symptom of an unhappy and/or stressful life. You may be dealing with the aftermath of a painful past. You may have a serious medical problem. You may feel stuck in a terrible relationship. You may be unhappy with your job or stressed out by the demands of raising a family. Healthy eating habits and fitness may make you feel better, but ultimately, you need to deal with the issues in your life to achieve true freedom. There are many ways to get help, including self-help books, seeing a medical specialist, going to church, working with a counselor/therapist, meditation, etc. Do the work and figure out what works for you. (Again, seek professional help if you need it. There is no shame in making yourself a priority.)
Day 15 – What do you love about yourself?– Make a list of all the beautiful things you do and describe how great you are. Examples:
- I am beautiful.
- I am smart.
- I am loveable.
- I am worthy of the best.
- I’m an overcomer
- I am capable.
- I care about others.
- I have an excellent sense of style.