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How the Whole Life Challenge Changed My Life – Are You Ready for a Change?

In 2011 I took part in the first-ever Whole Life Challenge. What started as an eight-week “game” of keeping track of my daily habits - eating whole foods, exercising, stretching, getting adequate sleep, taking supplements, hydrating and reflecting - changed my life.

My first Whole Life Challenge

In eight weeks, I lost eight pounds of fat and gained three pounds of muscle. My complexion improved (co-workers asked what I had changed with my skin regimen), and the nasal congestion that had plagued me for years was gone. Despite a stressful career at the time (over which I had lost a lot of sleep), I was finally sleeping a solid eight hours a night for the first time in a long time. I was less anxious and felt more in control of what was going on in my life. I was physically and mentally in the best shape of my life.

Kelly lifting weights during the 8-week Whole Life Challenge

The Whole Life Challenge Has Helped Thousands of People Lose Weight and Get Healthy
I’m not alone in my results from the Whole Life Challenge. What started as a small challenge of about 150 of my "gym friends" in Los Angeles exploded into a worldwide challenge of almost 80,000 players in just four years. It continues to grow year after year because it works.

The Whole Life Challenge isn't a diet plan or an intense exercise program. It's not restrictive eating and it's not a "Paleo diet challenge" or a workout program only for CrossFit enthusiasts. The Whole Life Challenge is about keeping track of the 7 Daily Habits - nutrition, exercise, mobility, supplementation, hydration, reflection and a weekly lifestyle practice - that are crucial to improving the overall quality of your life. It provides structure, support and accountability to help you get to where you want to be. It increases the awareness of your daily habits and helps eliminate those that are hindering you and holding you back.

Putting Yourself First
When I started the challenge, I was unhappy with a lot of situations in my life that were consuming me. I was overworked and constantly anxious. I was in a failing relationship that was on its way out. I often made quick, poorly planned diet decisions based on my hectic work and travel schedule. Workouts would regularly go out the window with the demands and deadlines of my job.

I wasn't taking very good care of myself, and I knew I couldn't keep up at the current pace of my life. So I committed to putting myself first for just eight weeks. What I learned through this whole process is that you have to take care of yourself first to be able to be there for the things that are important to you: family, partners, work, etc. And aside from all that, you'll look and feel better!

Join LIVESTRONG.COM in the 8-Week Whole Life Challenge This September!
I’m forever in debt to this experience and I’m excited to share it with you! We’re creating a LIVESTRONG.COM team to take the 8-Week Whole Life Challenge starting September 19, 2015, and we're telling you now so that you have plenty of time to prepare and to rally your friends and family to join us on the LIVESTRONG.COM Whole Life Challenge team.

We’ll provide you with support and motivation. On our team page, we’ll discuss how the challenge is going day-by-day, share tips and cheer each other on. We'll provide recipes and workout ideas and we can answer any questions that you might have.

If sleeping better, losing weight and feeling better aren't reasons enough to join us, we'll also be running a BEFORE and AFTER Success Story contest for the challenge with prizes of $250 to the top male and female health transformations. More details to come.

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Check out the official Whole Life Challenge rules for more information about the ins and outs of the game.

Sign up before September 5 and the cost of the challenge is just $39. After September 5, the price will be $49. Make sure you register with the LIVESTRONG.COM team for extra support (everyone here on the team will be playing, too, so we're in it with you!) and for a chance to win some extra cash.

Do this for yourself. Commit to yourself. After eight weeks, you won't be the same, and you'll be grateful for it. Let's get fit and healthy together before the holidays. We hope to see you in there with us!

- Kelly

Readers - Will you be joining us in the Whole Life Challenge? Why or why not? What are you hoping to achieve by doing the Challenge? Leave a comment below and let us know your goals and we will help to keep you accountable.

Kelly Plowe, M.S., RD, CSSD is a LIVESTRONG.COM editor, nutritionist and food and health communications specialist. As a registered dietitian and certified Sports Nutritionist, Kelly helps consumers put health and nutrition research into practice. She believes diet is at the center of a healthy and fulfilling life and is dedicated to helping others be their best. Kelly lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their bulldog, Sunny. She’s an avid runner and CrossFit enthusiast. Living in SoCal, Kelly spends most of her free time outside ocean swimming, riding her beach cruiser and going to concerts.

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