Challenging Yourself

Challenging Yourself

Let’s talk about something that has nothing to do with coffee.  Last week, I finished one of the hardest things I have ever done.  A 75 day challenge called #75Hard.  It’s really a simple personal challenge that is intended to increase your mental discipline and challenge your personal decision-making skills.  More about that later.

I am a big fan of personal challenges. I think challenging yourself is great. Many of you know I am a high school coach and I enjoy holding myself and those around me to a higher standard.  One of the ways we can stay focused is with these (sometimes silly) personal challenges.  In 2011 I went 286 days without using hot water or ice.  I drank room temperature drinks with no ice and took basically cold showers.  It was amazing and each day in the shower I reflected on my great fortune to be alive in the 21th century living in an amazing country.  The ability to generate income to support my family.  The lack of ice was also constant reminder that I had electricity and a freezer in my house capable of providing me the luxury of a cold beverage.  Remember I live in Texas!

While that was about 9 years ago, more recently, I have done other challenges.  90 days vegan, that was super hard.  (note, I did this as a challenge and for dietary reasons, NOT for political reasons or because I think animals are pets or anything like that) It was a great cleanse and kickstarted some weight loss and general well-being.  I have gone a year without alcohol, not too challenging since I am only an occasional drinker.  That one wasn’t even started on purpose, it was February and during a conversation with my wife, we realized it had been like 3 months, so I just decided to see how far I could go!

These are just a few of the things I have tried. Most of these challenges are to improve my eating habits or for cleansing purposes. The 75 Hard challenge, known as #75hard on the web, wasn’t about weight loss or fitness.  It was designed for mental and personal discipline.  During the global virus situation we are dealing with in 2020, I had 2 businesses closed, many challenges, life changes, generally unsettled, etc and I learned about this program and started the very next day.

What is it?  It’s a 75-day program that has just 5 things you MUST do every day and only a few things you CAN’T do each day. If you fail at any of the following, you must restart at day 1. First, the things you must do. 

  1. Read 10 pages of a self-improvement or business book. No audio, physical book
  2. Complete 2, 45-minute workouts. before you go to sleep, non-consecutive. 1 workout must be outside.
  3. Drink 1 gal of water
  4. Follow a diet of your choice. No cheat meals/days. No Alcohol
  5. Daily selfie progress photo.

I found the first few days relatively easy. I was steam rolling through my first week and woke up on day 8 to realize I forgot to take a photo last night. AHH!  I had to quit or start over! 

I had many revelations about my personal accountability, schedule, and priorities. The challenge is easy to understand, but what it teaches you is very complex.  You can’t neglect any aspect of this until later in the day or it will bite you!  The 45-minute workouts require you to plan your day and be aware of the weather, schedules, family members schedules.  Many times, I stepped out from an event to go get my workout in. More than once, I left for a walk or jog AFTER midnight! You also must stay on that water consumption. Its hard to chug a gallon of water before bed! I chose the Slow Carb diet, found it enjoyable and easy to keep going.  I found that I really like lettuce wraps! Gotta have my sandwiches!  I am an avid reader, so just making sure I read a minimum of 10 pages was the only challenge. This grew my personal decision-making skills and reset my priorities to a new level.

Should you try this challenge?  Yes, if not this exact challenge then I encourage you to take a hard and productive look at your personal discipline. Keeping something up for a week is one thing but for 2.5 months, that was #75hard.

Thanks for reading this, I hope you found it interesting or at least mildly entertaining. Just to see who reads this. DM me on and I will send you a free sample of a new coffee we are working on. Top Secret!


PS Photo Caption:  This photo is from day 74 after it rained all day and I waited to get my outdoor workout in.  I jogged in a storm. I was committed to my goals.

TxPO Nick

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