After the holidays, it is safe to say that many of us felt sluggish. With the arrival of the new year, resolutions, and the challenge of navigating ‘Dry January,’ the prospect of adopting new ambitious goals can seem daunting. This is precisely why the internet went crazy for the 75 Soft challenge, storming the world of Tik Tok and Instagram.
This program is tailored specifically towards individuals with busy working lives, setting achievable goals to be proud of in-between the nine to five. The 75 Soft challenge creates an encouraging setting for users, following the regime for 75 days for instant results. The rules are as follows. They must be followed everyday:
1. Read 10 pages of a book.
2. Do 45 minutes of exercise.
3. Drink (at least) 3 litres of water.
4. Only drink on social occasions.
5. Eat healthily.
6. One rest day a week.
Seems easy, right? Unlike other diet intensive courses, the 75 Soft method offers attainable goals without the pressure of joining a new gym or joining a running club. Whilst one person’s exercise goal may involve weight training, for another, it could be as simple as their daily walk to work. Known in 2024 as ‘dirty wellness,’ this trend incorporates a fulfilling life into the contrasting structure of wellness set by rigid routine.
This gentle initiation into the world of fitness works more towards self-improvement in comparison to weight loss, promoting healthy living over conventional body standards. Often, when people are motivated solely by weight goals, they in turn encounter issues surrounding their own self-perception. Alternatively, this method ensures that users prioritise their overall mental and physical health, not just their waist size.
For those who find structured routine difficult, this challenge forces them to, well, get their act together. Cultivating a mindset for order and responsibility, the 75 Soft challenge allows participants to look ahead into their week, making sure they have time for a morning of evening work out. Before you know it, you are adhering to a schedule that allows for all of your daily goals to be met. Damn you 75 Soft, you’ve done it again!
Notably, the 75 Soft challenge caters to a whole host of individuals, recognising those who live on a budget and may not be able to afford a personal trainer. Instead, participants can follow easy, straightforward rules, permitting activities such as socialising with a drink in hand or a bit of light bedtime reading. Not only inclusive to those on tight financial constraints, but the 75 Soft challenge also seems to integrate a young and dynamic demographic. What more could you want from a self-improvement challenge?
For those who are up for a bigger challenge, there is the 75 Hard challenge. Here are the rules:
1. No alcohol.
2. Drink a gallon of water.
3. Complete two 45-minute workouts.
4. Read ten pages of non-fiction.
5. If you skip, you must start over.
6. Take a progress picture every day.
The 75 Hard method works towards mental resilience. The commitment to two daily workouts, an alcohol-free diet, and a completion of reading tasks foster discipline and mental perseverance. Participants have reported increased confidence and a great sense of accomplishment that the rigorous programme demands. In fact, reading daily has been reported to expand vocabulary, reduce stress, and improve memory. Perhaps more importantly, it provides a more productive alternative of entertainment away from the TV screen.
Going beyond its mental and physical benefits, the 75 Hard challenge encourages individuals to reach beyond their comfort zones. Whilst not always for the faint hearted, those who complete the program emerge equipped with the necessary tools to for a fitter life.
Sports Nutritionist Jess Hillard believes that the 75 Hard presents some significant risks. She stated that, “instead of recommending exercise twice daily for 75 days, it is more beneficial to focus on a well-rounded exercise program that includes a variety of workouts and adequate rest.” Additionally, Jess believes that the 75 Hard challenge offers little to no wriggle room for individual differences.
Whilst the allure for the 75 Hard challenge lies in its intensity, most opt for the 75 Soft. Unlike traditional year-round fitness commitments, this challenge gives users a specific time frame to adhere to. This minimises the perpetual dread of obligatory hours at the gym, attempting to burn calories on a treadmill 365 days of the year. Instead, the appeal lies in the challenges temporality – a commitment to a rigorous, yet finite destination.
So what do you think? Both challenges emerge as cost-free alternatives to conventional routines of fitness, promising tangible improvements in both physical and mental health. Pushing the boundaries of traditional workouts, the 75 challenge creates change in a small space of time. If you are a beginner, consider going easy at first. Try some at home Pilates before committing to the 75 challenge, gradually working your way up to the task. For those who are already prepared for a little intensity, the path to a healthier life awaits. Embark on the journey to a more resilient you, go forth and get fit!
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