The Transform in 28 challenge is here and it is time to improve your exercise and nutrition. The first big grocery shop has been done, the meals have been prepped, and we are all starting the week with the hopeful mindset that we will Transform in 28! Over the next 4 weeks you will be challenged in various ways to improve your nutrition and exercise. You will be encouraged to set some personal goals and hold yourself accountable to them. It is our aim to give you a bit of motivation and momentum heading in to the colder months of the year.

Read on where I will share my top tips to start the first week of the challenge off on a high and to continue the momentum throughout.



Tip #1 – Do your food prep


One of the most important things we can do to keep us on track during the challenge (and beyond), is to be organised. Organisation starts as simple as mapping out one hour you have spare on a Sunday and getting the food shop done for the week. I recommend writing a list of meals you will batch cook for the week, and devise your food shop list from there.

Aim to stick to this as you shop and avoid buying foods that you may overeat. Having your food prepped means that you don’t have the excuse of ‘I’m too hungry’ after work and end up fast food means that you can equally control your portions (and track efficiently if you like) AND you will be saving money.

If you challenge yourself to map out your nutrition and exercise before the week starts, you will ironically find the challenge itself much easier to complete.



Tip #2 – Eat foods that you enjoy


Whether your goal is to lose a few kilos, build muscle or just become a better overall version of yourself, you MUST be eating foods that you enjoy! Just because it is a challenge it does not mean that we are going to have to eat chicken rice and vegetables all day. That’s just not enjoyable, and not sustainable.

Instead, focus on the foods and meals you already love and enjoy and see if you can make some switches to enhance the nutritional content. For example, creamy sauce for light Philadelphia or domino sauce for chopped tomatoes and spices!

Bolognese’s, stews, curries, Casseroles, stir-fries and burrito bowls are all easy to batch cook and freeze dishes that you can make your own by adding the spices and texture that you like to your desire.



Tip #3 – Try new foods


We often get so comfortable in what we do daily that we don’t bother to switch it up. Make it a challenge to incorporate something new each week in the challenge – it could be your next go to!

I love grabbing a new colour veg or fruit each week. You can also check out some of the yummy recipe ideas on the Authentic PT Facebook page, guaranteed you will find something new that you will love.



Tip #4 – Start reading food labels


One of the weekly checklist items within the challenge is to reduce your intake of saturated fats and added sugars. The best way you can do this is to get familiar with food labels on the foods that you currently eat. Take yoghurt for example – many different yoghurts have varying amounts of sugar.

Ingredients are listed by weight, so if sugar is one of the first few ingredients, there is like to be a substantial amount in the produce. Also look for hidden sugars such as high fructose corn syrup, dextrose and other syrups. Lower sugar products contain less than 5g/ 100g. Also check for fat < 3g/100g. See if you can do this for one week and embrace the challenge!



Tip #5 – Enjoy the process


At the end of the day – the only real competition within the challenge is between current you and the you that you will become in 28 days’ time. Although it would be great if everybody could reduce heaps of body fat percentage and increase muscle mass – that just probably won’t happen in 28 days.

Instead – set yourself up on good habits that you enjoy and will be able to sustain. Whether that means finding a new dish that you could eat for ever or incorporating a new activity that you love, make it your own, you got this!


In summary


Embarking on the “Transform in 28” challenge, the first week kicks off with a diligent grocery shop and meal prepping session, setting the tone for success. Key tips for the week include organising food prep to avoid impulse eating, enjoying meals that cater to personal tastes while enhancing nutrition, experimenting with new foods, scrutinising food labels to cut down on saturated fats and sugars, and embracing the journey with a focus on sustainable habits rather than drastic transformations. Challenge yourself over the next 28 days to improve your nutrition and exercise and you will be amazed at what you can achieve!


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