October 29, 2022

My Plans for 75 Hard

My plan to start the 75 Hard program starts in just three days, on November 1st. I've really been looking forward to it! I think that because I'm doing it for reasons other than weight loss, it has a different meaning to me. I'd love to get more disciplined (especially with exercise), drink more water (I used to drink a ton, but I got really bad at it), and read some books that are out of my norm. I'm not a fan of self-help books, but reading just 10 pages a day is doable--and hopefully I'll enjoy them enough to want to read more than that.

If you missed my post about 75 Hard, here is the program in a nutshell (it's by Andy Frisella):

  1. Follow a diet. It doesn't matter what you choose, but you cannot have cheat meals or alcohol.
  2. Workout for 45 minutes, twice a day. At least one of these 45-minute workouts must be done outdoors. (You cannot combine the two workouts)
  3. Drink 1 gallon of water per day.
  4. Read 10 pages of a non-fiction book.
  5. Take a progress picture daily.
The last time I did this challenge was in 2020 and I didn't make it all the way through. The only things I kept up with were the workouts (I did 45 minutes twice a day with at least one being outside) and taking a progress picture daily.

This time, I feel much more prepared (mentally and physically). My diet is simple: I'm going to continue to eat a healthy vegan diet, just like I have been all year. However, I am going to throw in a little challenge so that it's not TOO easy--I'm going to eliminate sweets. I haven't been eating many as it is, but it can't hurt to cut them out completely for a while. (I already don't drink, so giving up alcohol isn't a problem.)

I can drink one gallon of water a day when I put my mind to it. I'll start with a quart first thing in the morning (I'm always SO dehydrated when I wake up). I'll drink a quart after each of my 45-minute workouts. And finally, I'll drink a quart in the evening, a couple of hours before going to bed. I like to drink water by the quart instead of the cup, because it seems simpler.

I'll likely take my progress photo first thing in the morning. I've also decided that I'm going to wear the same clothes for my progress photos every day. That way, I'll be able to see a difference if the exercising actually does change my body composition. I'd *like* to take my photos in shorts and a sports bra, but that would take a LOT of courage. I'll probably just wear running tights and a form-fitting top.

For my workouts, I want to get creative this time! I will likely do my outdoor workout as a walk with Joey like I used to. He could stand to lose a few pounds and I know he'd love to see his buddy Roomba on our five-mile route.

For my second workout, though, I've thought a lot about it and I want to do some things I don't normally do. Other than the treadmill (which I'll probably do three times a week, and maybe for only 30 minutes before switching to something else for 15 minutes), I am going to do the old school EA Sports Active on the Wii (Amazon affiliate link). Remember that?! I used to do it faithfully in 2012 and I think there is a 30-day challenge on it. It involves a lot of strength exercise, which I can definitely stand to do.

I just read a post I wrote about it and according to what I wrote, it was HARD. So, I'm curious to see how I'll do with it! This was the summary after the first workout.

I can also use the Wii Fit U (assuming I'm doing the "real" exercise stuff and not just messing around with simple games). Finally, I used an Amazon gift card (given to me from my cross country team!) to buy two very, very random pieces of exercise equipment: 

The first is a sort of weighted hula hoop, only without the actual hoop swinging around. It's a belt that you wear around your waist and it has a weight on it that you swing around as if you are doing the hula hoop. (I used to use a weighted hula hoop and I loved it!) Here is a screenshot of a video to the one I bought on Amazon (affiliate link):

That could fail miserably, however, when I'm sure the cats will try to go after the weight. Haha!

The second item is even more random for me: it's a Squat Assist "Row-and-Ride" trainer (Amazon affiliate link). Basically, you sit on it, holding the handles in front of you, squat down while extending your arms, and then return to upright position. Hard to explain! But here is a stock photo:

It was inexpensive and it looked like it might be fun, so I thought I'd give it a try. It folds flat, so it won't get in the way, either. But it looks like it would be a decent workout and definitely something different for me.

I also have a good jump rope that I am pretty sure I've never used, as well as some body weight exercise cards lying around somewhere. I have a bike in the garage that I rarely use. I even have about 10 exercise bands. So, I have a ton of options! I'm going to try to mix it up as much as I can. 

Finally, for my books... I'm a very slow reader, so I'm not sure how much I'll get done in the 75 days. But I've had this book called Running & Being by Dr. George Sheehan that I got when I was invited to the Runner's World headquarters way back in... 2014? It's described as the "philosophical bible for runners". It's not a typical running book, like 'Hansons Marathon Method' or '80/20 Running' (both books I love). It's about much more than just running; from what I understand, it's about how exercise and competition (including running) can be thought of as fun and a lifelong wellness plan for personal growth.

As you know, I LOVE my Kindle Paperwhite; however, since I've had this paperback for so long and it's literally brand new, I'm going to go ahead and read the paperback for 75 Hard.

Once I'm done with it, I'll give it away on my blog for anyone who may be interested in reading it.

In a nutshell, my day should look something like this for 75 Hard:

Wake up, get dressed in exercise clothes, then take a mirror selfie.
Drink a quart of water. Eat vegan breakfast while I read 10 pages of my book.
Go for a 45 minute walk with Joey. Drink another quart of water.
Go on with my normal day, eating a vegan lunch.
Sometime in the afternoon or evening, do another 45-minute workout--some sort of combination of the things I listed. Follow up with another quart of water.
Cook and eat a healthy vegan dinner, either before or after the second workout.
Have a healthy snack if I am hungry after dinner. Drink another quart of water.

That will get in all of my 75 Hard steps for the challenge. The hardest part for me is going to be fitting it all in. Despite the fact that I don't work a 9-5 type job, I'm very busy throughout the day. So I'll just have to adjust things around to fit everything in.

But I'm excited about getting started!


  1. I really enjoyed Running & Being. It will be interesting to see what you think. Good luck with 75 Hard. It does sound HARD!! I won't be joining you as I'm still restricted from any vigorous exercise until I have the echocardiogram recheck on December 12th (2022), but I'll be cheering from the sidelines. Also, very smart to not form a FB group. FB is throttling even group posts now, making it tough for anyone to see nearly anything that's not ads. One more reason I spend less and less time there. I joined Tik Tok and while that seems ridiculous, it's easy and fun. No pressure though. And that's not a group. And you don't need one more thing. Not sure why I even mentioned it. And now I'm rambling!

  2. For your second exercise period, you might get a kick out of making up cards with different exercises - or maybe different types of exercises - on them. Then each day, you choose a card at random. Afterward, you can either put the card back in the stack, so possibly you could get the same card the next day, or leave it out until you go through the whole stack. I've seen some people really enjoy the random nature of this, and I can see that you might like making the cards. :) I thought about trying to start an adapted version of 75 Hard with you, but my birthday is next weekend, and I'm definitely cheating for that. LOL

  3. Youtube has some great exercise content either for bodyweight or dumbells etc. I usually choose no jumping and select a workout from 15mins up to 45mins. Very useful for a day where you just want to follow along and take a break from decision making!

  4. Good luck! I did 75 Hard about 18 months ago and made it to day 43 before deciding I'd had enough! LOL But I was pretty darn proud of myself for doing that much. I was walking outside in below zero temps, I slept like a baby every night, and my body was the fittest it has ever been. But I was also 54 years old at the time and my body needed rest days, and I think drinking a gallon of water was too much for my system. I loved the consistency I had built for myself, though, and really need to find that again. Looking forward to watching your journey!

  5. I decided to do my OWN version of 75 Hard that I made up, that will be challenging in my own unique ways:
    Drink 75 oz of water (I currently struggle to drink 40)
    Do 75 minutes of fitness (I'm going to break this up into 2 sessions)
    Stay under 1500 cals and under 75 carbs
    Take a daily mirror selfie

    I'm excited to get started! I've lost 20 pounds since July and I need to step up my game.


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