The John P. Health Challenge – Are You Up For It?

John P.

workoutHey folks, next week I’ve committed myself to starting a new Health Challenge. Well, technically I stole that name from Jack Finlayson, our CEO at Layered Tech. You see, every year Jack runs a Health Challenge for the folks at work. It works about like this…

  • First of all, participants are all on the honor system. You can choose to participate or not, but if you are disqualified then you have to admit it and you aren’t eligible for the prizes that come at the end.
  • There are some exercise requirements.
  • There are some dietary requirements.
  • It lasts for about 12 weeks.

At the end of the challenge, whoever has shown the most notable improvement wins! So, starting this coming Sunday, April 12, 2009, I’m going to be kicking off my own little health challenge right here for readers of my blog. Complete with glory and prizes! You’ve got the rest of this week to prepare, but then the progress begins next week!

Personally, I am starting out at 188.8 pounds and 22.5% bodyfat. My number one goal is to lose inches off my waist which is 34″. Ideally I would like to have a 31″ waist.

Here are the Rules

  1. Almost completely eliminate sugar from the diet. No more candy, Coke, or other sugary drinks. In fact, nothing but water! One Coke and one candy bar per week are allowed.
  2. Decrease food portions by 40-50% for all meals. Instead of eating whatever looks good, stop eating after you feel full. (Overall, I want to consume half the calories I used to.)
  3. Snack all you want, but only fruit or nuts are allowed!
  4. Exercise every single day. This doesn’t mean long exercise daily. It means frequent bursts of exercise. Pushups and situps as many times a day as you can squeeze them in. Whatever you are capable of, just lots of it!

In a few days I’ll give you my Marine Corps style workout schedule. Perhaps I’ll even video a few of the exercises guaranteed to get you in shape… That’s it! Now, some of you are going to have to follow a couple extra rules if you decide to go along with me here.

  • If you are a big beer drinker, you are going to have to treat it the way I treat Coke. Cut it out! Only one or two per week!
  • If you are a smoker, I would prefer to see you quit altogether, but at a minimum you must cut down by 50% during the Health Challenge.

My Progress

As I’m going through the health challenge I’m going to report back right here on my progress pretty regularly. I’m also going to tweet periodically about it, so if you aren’t following me on Twitter, feel free.

Date Pullups Squat Thrusts Pushups Arm Curls Treadmill Weight Body Fat
April 6 35 34 reps / 60 lbs. 188.8 lbs. 22.5%
April 9 30 reps / 60 lbs. 186.5 lbs. 22.1%
April 12 50 20 87 reps / 60 lbs. 185 lbs. 21.7%
April 15 80 57 reps / 60 lbs. 183 lbs. 21.5%
April 20 15 125 20 25 reps / 70 lbs. 182.4 lbs. 21.3%
April 25 50 181.1 lbs. 20.9%
April 29 15 50 56 75 reps / 60 lbs. 178.6 lbs. 20.4%
May 8 176 lbs. 20.1%
May 13 174.5 lbs. 19.2%
May 16 300 30 reps / 60 lbs. 174 lbs. 19%
May 22 30 75 reps / 60 lbs. 172.6 lbs. 19.1%
May 24 100 30 reps / 60 lbs. 172 lbs. 18.9%

How to Join the Health Challenge

If you’d like in on this Challenge, here’s what all you can do:

  • Drop your Twitter ID in the comments and I’ll follow you back (maybe you can follow each other too), as long as you promise to stick with it and give us all updates as well! Motivation is key people!
  • You can give updates here in the comments on this blog, or via Twitter, or on your OWN blog, but your progression must be documented in order to be eligible for any sort of prize at the end.

Right now I don’t know what the prizes will be, but I’ll think of something if anyone actually joins me here and completes the challenge!

One last thought. A program like this always works best with peer support. So even if you don’t join in, how about sharing this with other people on your blog, or Facebook or Twitter or whatever. I’m committed, but I could use all the partners I can get!



  1. says

    My challenge went half way through. Fell ill, lost path, now back on to getting back to the challenge with more enthusiasm. Did legs today. Planning a diet now.

  2. says


    Most people are giving updates daily on Twitter. If you get TweetDeck and set up a search, you can see the updates by checking for #HealthChallenge. Also, I gave another big update on a new post today


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *