Manic Monday ~ Math Games

StartFragment I love small challenges. I feel like a "winner" when I see a challenge through to the end. I get a good dose of the larger challenges in life, but it's those smaller ones that I feel I can easily tackle without the long list of emotional efforts. It's the success of the small challenges that also help us reach our big goals. Like I have said before, changing your lifestyle towards a goal of a healthier life requires a whole lot of mental preparedness. Sometimes our mental minds need to be challenged....and sometimes we need to change our perspectives regarding challenges. Challenges don't have to be viewed as battles. They can be more like games. Games are much more enjoyable than battles. For those of you who need a "game" to stay motivated, I've got a few for you! I have some amazing friends who I trained in the past that found great success in working their numbers through these game challenges. Math is a big part of measuring healthy lifestyle journeys. We track calories using math. We formulate heart rate zones with math. We design resistant weight programs with numbers. We even take body measurements that certainly need the use of math. You don't have to be a math whiz to partake in our math games. So let me continue on by sharing some math games, or should I say "mental" math games... Or "motivational" mental math games? Game #1 The 3,500 Calorie Deficit Challenge~ It takes 3,500 calories to produce 1 pound! We take the number, 3,500, and use it as a caloric goal. The object of this game is to create a deficit of 3,500 calories in one week's time. This is done above and beyond your regular weekly lifestyle. There are 2 ways to create the deficit. One way is by reducing your caloric intake each day. The other way is to burn or expend more calories each day. Ideally there should be approximately 500 calories done away with each day for 7 days. A suggested way to do this is by reducing caloric intake with food by 250 calories a day (which in reality can be something simple like eliminating a soda and a small snack or even that extra serving of pasta/pizza) and burning an additional 250 calories through activity. Track your daily progress on the calendar. Game #2 The 25 Point Challenge. This is one I use quite a bit. I assign 1 point for 10 minutes of cardio exercise. The goal is to accumulate 25 points per week. This works well with people who have unpredictable weeks. This game can be changed to work for those who like a little more cardio in their programs. It can be changed to miles instead of points. The goal being that one might want to walk or run a total of 25 miles per week. Another variation would include resistant training. I've assigned 1 point for 10-12 minutes of resistance training. I can even increase my point goal to 30 or more. Play with what will challenge you. Game #3 The Interval Game This game is best done at MVP utilizing a cardio machine (another version using the weight machines). Hop on the treadmill or the elliptical. Chose a 2:1 ratio or a 3:1 ratio. Go two minutes at a moderate to low pace and intensity then go hard for one minute. Repeat this until 20-35 minutes is achieved. If you want to try this with a weight machine, this would not be wise for pace because movements need to be controlled....therefore the weight would be changed. Choose a weight that the exercise can be performed for 20 reps. Then switch the weight to a level that only 10 reps can be performed. Take a 1-2 minute break and repeat two more times. Another variation would be to start with the heavy weight, less reps first, then follow with the lighter weight/20 reps. Make sure you condition the entire body by using the entire circuit. For best results, try to break up the workout by exercising certain body parts on different days. There are many, many ways to put the "game" into a challenge. Maybe you have your own unique motivational game you play to achieve your goals. If not, have a little fun! Who says healthy lifestyles can't be fun? Just remember, the ultimate feeling of achieving your goals is priceless! Have some good 'old fun using math this week! I would love to hear about your "game." Have a GREAT week! Rachel Zimmerman, Certified Personal Trainer and Life Coach ACE/NSCA Wife, Mother, and Friend EndFragment

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