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New openings for the Lead, Follow, or Get out of the way challenge

Team Progress Not Perfection 2013 has been taking part in a challenge called Lead, Follow, or Get out of the Way. Its a 4 stage challenge which starts easy, then builds on successes. Each stage lasts around 3 months and gets progressively more difficult. The first group to go through the challenge is finishing up the first stage (Green) and entering the second stage (Bronze). We are looking for a new group to start stage 1 which the second stage people will support and encourage. If you want a high degree of motivation and a group that follows up to hold people accountable, check out the challenge on the community tab of our team. The challenge is called Lead, Follow, or Get out of the Way (updated version). Below is a little information from the challenge.

Mon. Sep 30, 8:11pm

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LFG description

Lead, follow, or get out of the way is a common saying. Some people are born to lead others. They motivate through their actions and show people a path. Others follow. Followers are like the mass of an army. Without their dedication, the army would be nothing. Then there are those that get in the way. They constantly have a reason why something can't be done, never follow through, and give reasons why something can't be done, either through negative reinforcement or lack of any action. I posed a question regarding whether obesity was a disease or due to personal choices. I learned a lot from what I read. Some things I agreed with and some things I disagreed with. One thing I did not change was my opinion that what I eat and whether I exercise is a choice. I have always believed that I control my own destiny. My fitness level is one of those things. Sure, some people have it harder losing weight whether it's their genetics (metabolism, thyroid, etc) or current lifestyle (stress, struggling financially, weight of family issues, etc). And outside factors play a role such as quality of food available, advertising, etc.

But I still believe that the largest factor in achieving our individual definitions of fitness is personal responsibility. No one but ourselves can make the decision to do what is necessary to lose weight, gain muscle mass, build cardiovascular endurance, or whatever our goal might be. No one but ourselves can force ourselves to go workout when we are down. No one but ourselves can make the smart food choice even when chocolate is what we emotionally want. Sure we are constantly bombarded by advertising. Yet we have the free will to ignore it.

In my opinion, one of the negative factors affecting our motivation is ourselves. It's in the daily comments. When we constantly read negative comments, it becomes enabling. By negative, I mean lack of success stories. Constantly reading comments that contain so few stories of success is enabling. It enables us to blame other things for our own personal lack of success. Seeing so few people logging drags down our motivation to complete our own logs. We pat each other on the back and say "baby steps" or "but at least you recognized the problem" or "we all struggle with that" and it enables us to avoid confronting the issue.

So I have designed a program (with the input of others) that provides a structured approach to keeping on track, staying motivated, and continually improving. The program is designed in stages, and the user needs to complete 4 distinct levels, each of which lasts a minimum of 3 months. Its purpose is to provide a structured environment for staying motivated and continually improving in a team environment.

Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:12 PM

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LFG philosophy

Think of your body as a large ship. Since you are on this site, it is currently in need of repair, the engine is in bad shape, you give it poor fuel, and for the most part you don’t even have your hands on the wheel to control its course. Your objective is to reach an island called FIT. FIT is an island where you are at a healthy weight, your muscles are toned, you have good cardio ability, your joints are flexible, and whatever other fitness goals you may have are achieved. To reach the island, you need to take control of your ship by actively controlling its course, tune up its engine, and supply it with high quality fuel.

If you want to get to FIT island, you will need to grab the wheel of your ship and keep it on course. You are the only person who can do this. It is your choice whether to steer your ship or let it drift aimlessly. Your lack of controlling your ship is not the fault of genetics, the government, advertising, food demons, sugar addictions, or enabling friends. Those are currents and winds that slow you down and try to blow you off course, but you control the direction of your ship.

Once you take personal responsibility for controlling the direction of your ship, you need to have a powerful engine to move the ship to your destiny. You cannot put low quality fuel (diet) in an engine and expect it to provide the power to propel your ship against the bad currents and winds. Fuel it with crap and it will not perform to your expectations.
You also want to have a high performance engine. If you do not keep an engine tuned on a regular basis, it will not propel your ship the way you would like it to. Your body requires tuning as well, and the tuning occurs through regular exercise.

Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:15 PM

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A little taste of the program - Green stage weeks 1 and 2

Week 1
It's about getting started. You know how it feels to go workout the first time in months when you really don't want to? You simply have to drag yourself to the w/o. You have to use brute force to get yourself going. You make 1 simple diet core rule (It’s a DIET CR, not an exercise CR) and exercise a minimum of 3 times during the week. If you haven't been exercising regularly, ease into it. For some, their w/o may be as little as a 5min walk or a few calisthenics. This week you are simply altering the direction your life is going.
Make 1 simple to achieve CR.
Exercise 3 times, regardless of how little you do.

Week 2
Continue from week 1. This week is about creating a pattern for yourself. You broke into exercise during week 1 and probably felt awkward doing it. This week you continue the exercise pattern from week 1 at about the same intensity. After 2 weeks, your mind will be used to the idea that you will be working out regularly. Also, your joints should be looser and the muscle pain due to getting started exercising should be gone. In addition, you add another simple core rule or build on your last one. You also add your second DIET CR.

Keep following CR1.
Add a second DIET CR.
Exercise 3 times.

Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:17 PM

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Core Rules

A big part of the challenge involves Core Rules. These are described below. They start out very simple and easy, and then you build on the success of keeping them over time. The first stage group made some major changes in their diets using this approach.

A core rule is a line in the sand DIET rule that you simply do not break. They are not “like to do’s”, “goals”, “targets”, “hope to get there’s”, or “good for me when I follow them’s”. If you write a CR, it means you keep it. It is meant to be an absolute.

Core Rules (CR’s) are meant to address the worst of your dietary habits. Only you can decide what these are. As an example, perhaps you drink 5 sodas/day. At 160cals/soda, that may be a significant area to improve on. A CR would work to address that.

The purpose of a CR is to give yourself a structured method of improving your diet and provide a method for the team to give you feedback on how you are doing. Not everyone has the same definition of “crap” food. If you don’t have CR’s that specify what you are working to improve, the team cannot look at your logs and give you feedback on how you are doing. This feedback is what we refer to as keeping you accountable. Team members will check your logs and your CR’s. When you break one, they will call you out on it. That helps us stay accountable to ourselves and keep us on course.

A CR must be measureable. Some good examples: “I will eat 5 salads/week”, or “I will only drink 2 sodas/day (down from 3)” are measurable quantities. A CR to “eat healthier”, “reduce sugar”, or “drink more water” are not measurable quantities that the team (or yourself) can hold you accountable to.
A CR must reflect a change you need to make in your diet (either change the number of calories being consumed or change the quality of what you are eating). Things like “stay positive”, “keep my CR’s”, “exercise regularly”, “read motivating books”, or “stop smoking” are not diet related.

A CR does not have to eliminate something. Eating a salad every day is an excellent dietary change that improves nutrition and reduces calories. An excellent starting CR would be to eat a large salad 3times/wk. You can always eat more if you want, but keep your CR requirement low so it is simple to achieve. It will be made more difficult later.

These must be kept SIMPLE to start out with. You want to set core rules that are pretty easy to do, then gradually build on them. If you set a core rule too difficult, you will break it right away, then feel down, and that leads to quitting. I cannot emphasis keeping it small to start out with enough. The idea is to build on successes. I hate the phrase “I am an all or nothing person”. I think we have all said that about ourselves which is why continually have to start new health kicks yearly. Don't try to go from drinking 3 sodas a day to 0. Cut back to 2/day for a week or two. Once you have mastered that and are feeling successful from achieving that, then reduce to 1/day. Do not add a core rule of drinking 8 glasses of water a day if you currently drink none. Start out with a CR to drink 1/day for a week, and then the following week, add another and so on. Don't set a core rule to never eat candy, etc. Don't make quitting smoking a core rule. That's a great thing, but it's not a simple task and should not be part of this.

No matter how many times I repeat and emphasize keeping the CR’s simple, I still see the occasional “no more sugar” or something like that pop up. Remember, you are making small changes and building on successes in an attempt to keep your motivation high and keep improving.

And remember, CR’s are not carved in stone. You may change them and modify them. For instance, I used CR’s to reduce my soda intake from 4/day down to 1/day. Then, I decided to drop to 0/day. However, I love having a soda and popcorn at the movies. So I changed the CR to 0sodas/day, except on movie night. Sometimes you write one and decide you don’t really want it anymore. They are line in the sand rules, but you can change the rules if you feel they are not what you really need.

Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:20 PM

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it rocks.. I am now in the 160's after back sliding into the lower 200's after losing my dad to cancer 2years ago.. this team will lift you up, but they wont hesitate to call you out.. a good friend of mine on the team today called me out on my exercise.. it has been lately just walking.. and a bit on my glider.. not my usual

I use to do insanity, jillian michaels dvds, tabata, running gym.. you name it.. well she let me know my exercise wasnt where it needed to be. and she was right.

we watch each others logs, we support, love, kick butt when needed.. if you are not getting to where you want to be.. I urge you to join the challenge.. you wont be sorry.

for the first time in a long time I am reaching for my goal and this time i am no longer standing in my way.. I am no longer self sabotaging, emotional eating.. i have 32 to go.. come join me.. i choose to set the example for others .. i want to lead people into a healthier lifestyle.. i love doing this so much.. I am in school to become a health coach.. PT rocks, but this team is one of the best on here.

so if you are thinking should i join.. or are you making excuses.. im too busy.. i have too many teams and groups already.. laughs i am in many but this is my main team i am focused in.. we are here to help you. we will hold your hand.. we will support you and kick butt when needed, but you have to make the choice to do this.. stop procrastinating.. what have you got to lose? the old you? find the real you.. its your choice..

what are you waiting for?


Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:23 PM

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A little more about the challenge

This challenge is not a diet plan or an exercise plan. We have a diverse group with diet approaches including low calorie, PT cheat system, PT cleanse, ETL, low carb, and other approaches. Our members choose their own exercise plans. The program is basically a way to keep you motivated and help you by holding you accountable. So if you are tired of starting and stopping "health kicks" and want to be part of an extremely active team, check out the challenge on team Progress, Not Perfection 2013. A typical day of comments for us is well over a full page of comments.

Best of luck on your journey, regardless of what approach you take.

Monday, September 30, 2013, 8:26 PM

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I'm in. This is just what I need.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013, 8:25 AM

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Like the approach. Can't wait to start.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013, 2:22 PM

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Can I do the cleanse and be part of this team?

Wednesday, October 02, 2013, 9:27 PM

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of course. we dont choose your plan we just hold you accountable to it


Wednesday, October 02, 2013, 10:06 PM

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I agree w/ Lynetta. You could use any eating lifestyle you choice. The LFG challenge simply helps you stay accountable to whatever your chosen path is. You have about 15 people checking various logs on a daily basis and they motivation and kicks in the azz. Check it out.

Thursday, October 03, 2013, 7:56 PM

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I've lost over 9lbs in 3 months. 1st time I've ever stuck w/ something. Love knowing people are checking my logs to check up on me. I'm even exercising consistently. Come check us out.

Friday, October 04, 2013, 4:28 PM

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This challenge rocks. Check us out on team Progress Not Perfection 2013. The most active team on PT.

Saturday, October 05, 2013, 7:23 PM

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