Challenge 2017: September








Welcome to September, and to a new month of challenges including Trail Bingo, Plank Power, and Presence. This month is all about moving off the beaten path, enjoying nature, and finding ways to stay connected to the moment we are in.

Keep reading to find:

• The Challenger of the Month
• Fitness Challenge: Trail Bingo
• The WOM: #PlankPower
• Healthy Habit: #Presence
• Shop the Challenge 2017 Store
• Challenge Membership Site
• The Facebook Group Etiquette

Ingrid Ross Kundinger

Congratulations to Ingrid, the August Challenger of the Month!








Post and Win: Use this month’s hashtags in the Challenge 2017 Facebook group this month, and you’ll be entered for a chance to win the Challenger Award and a $50 gift certificate to One More Mile.








This month’s fitness challenge is all about exploring the great outdoors. Simply download and print the Trail Bingo card and numbers and start moving and exploring off the beaten path. Then cut out each Trail Bingo number (B1, B2,…), fold or crinkle it up and put them in a glass or jar.

How to Play:
Pick one Trail Bingo number after every 30 minutes or more of continuous activity you do in a park, trail, forest preserve and off the beaten path. Sample activities include: trail run or walk, hike, geocache/Poke Go, trail ride on a bike or horse, picnic in the park, nature photo hunt, fly a kite in a park, bird watching, orienteering, camping, kayak or canoe, climbing and any movement in nature.

Pick a random (don’t peek) Trail Bingo number out of the jar after each 30 min or more off the beaten path activity (one per day limit) and then color in or tape the corresponding Trail Bingo square to your Trail Bingo card.

Win Trail Bingo with five numbers down, across, or diagonal. Each time you win Bingo, post “I Got #TrailBingo!” in the Challenge Facebook group. Once you do, you’ll be entered to win a $50 gift card for REI!

POST IT: Post your trail activity and pics in the Facebook group using the hashtag #TrailBingo.

DOWNLOAD Trail Bingo Card Here:






#PlankPower and it will challenge your core as well as your entire body. The mission, should you choose to accept it, is to weave planks into your training schedule (if you aren’t doing them), and add progressive plank challenges (if you are currently planking).

Newbies: If you’re new to planking or haven’t done it in awhile, perform the elbow plank for the first two weeks. When that gets easier, you can progress the time to 45-60 seconds, or add the donkey kick to continue to challenge yourself. As you continue to build strength after this challenge, you can incorporate the arm raise and side walk planks. The key is to start with a standard plank, build strength and form, and then progress.

Seasoned Plankers: Start by performing 2-3 sets of the first plank exercise. Every week, add the plank of the week exercise so by the end of the month, you are performing one set of each exercise (elbow plank, donkey kick, arm reach and side walk, and four total sets of planks).

DOWNLOAD the Plank Power Workout Here:

POST IT: Use the hashtag #PlankPower in the Challenge 2017 Facebook group to share your experiences with these workouts and for a chance to win a $50 Gift Certificate at One More Mile!








This month’s Healthy Habit builds on the Mindful Minute, and challenges us to focus on savoring life by living in the present. It is easy to find ourselves distracted by thoughts of the future, the past, or how things should be.

This month, savor what ever you’re doing and what ever is happening in the present moment. Whether you’re out for a run or walk, eating a tasty meal, visiting with friends or family, or taking a shower.

“Focusing on the present moment forces you to stop overthinking. Being present-minded takes away some of the self-evaluation and getting lost in your mind—and in the mind is where we make the evaluations that beat us up,” says Stephen Schueller, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania. Instead of getting stuck in your head and worrying, you can let yourself go.

In a study, Schueller found when subjects took a few minutes each day to actively savor something they usually hurried through—eating a meal, drinking a cup of tea, walking to the bus—they began experiencing more joy, happiness, and other positive emotions, and fewer depressive symptoms.

Whether you’re working out, sitting with a family member, enjoying a meal, or working, presence allows greater focus, which opens the door to optimal performance and living.

Challenge yourself to hold presence this month with these tips.

  • Turn off your phone and put it away during meals and gatherings, and take a phone break for an hour each day.
  • Breathe. Perform a Mindful Minute and focus on breathing in deeply, and exhaling.
  • Listen with all your heart. Look into their eyes and be there for someone.
  • Write down one thing you’re grateful for and place it next to your bed. Express gratitude for it when you rise and when you go to sleep.
  • Take a walk and focus on your breath or how it feels when your feet roll over the ground.
  • Put more space between your life’s activities.
  • Eat slowly and savor your food.
  • Do one thing at a time. When eating, eat. When walking, walk.
  • Spend 5-10 minutes every day doing nothing.
  • Let go of yourself. Focus less on what’s going on in your mind and more on what’s going on in the room, less on your mental chatter, and more on yourself as part of something.
  • Do something for someone else (a smile, compliment, or hold the door open).
  • Seek out a new experience and do something you’ve never done before.
  • Immerse yourself in nature often (a walk in the park, a cup of coffee in your backyard).

POST IT: Use the hashtag #Presence in the Challenge 2017 Facebook group to share your insights and experiences this month.