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The Madison Challenge Comes To An End

The Unknowns End The Madison Challenge With A Positive Attitude, Leaner Bodies And Sharper Minds!

In this, my last Madison Challenge column, I need to set one thing straight.  The Madison Challenge is not a weight loss program.  In the last couple of weeks I have had at least three people ask me if I had to weigh in every week, and if I, in fact, did lose weight over the ten week program.

Weight loss, if you need it, certainly is a byproduct of living a healthy lifestyle.  Eating right, exercising, keeping your body and mind in tiptop condition will result in a better body image.  So if you participate in the Madison Challenge and immerse yourself in all the suggestions you will probably either maintain or obtain your perfect weight.

I must say I fit into the latter category.  Years of raising children, trying to do too much and stressing out more than I should have added unwanted pounds to my petite frame.  During this ten-week period I have successfully lost 5 ½ pounds. Putting the weight on is easy. I am here to say that taking it off is definitely a challenge.

Over the last ten weeks I have really focused on eating right, exercising and getting an optimal amount of sleep.  All of these elements have really helped me stay on course to lose unwanted pounds and ultimately feel better about myself. 

There are actual studies out there that say you burn fat while sleeping and that getting 8 hours of sleep really does burn more fat. In addition, when I am tired I tend to eat more--and it is usually not the healthy food I crave, it is the junk food, which is not good anyway you look at it!

The program has also really brought our family together.  I must say I am pleasantly surprised on how amenable everyone has been keeping on track, encouraging each other and keeping up-to-date scorecards.

The girls were just having a discussion the other day about Lenten obligations and the Madison Challenge. Sophia said she was going to give up soda for Lent.  Ana argued that Sophia was not drinking soda for the Madison Challenge and therefore that was not really a “fair” thing to give up for Lent.  I say this is just fine. Sophia can just continue what she started 10 weeks ago and in about 40 days when Lent is over she will not even want any soda. 

I would like to add here that soda in our house is really reserved for special occasions anyway.  Usually the girls will order it when we are eating out, but it does not flow freely in the house.  Water and milk are the usual drink of choice.

Now that we have warmer weather and outdoor exercise is again easy and enjoyable I will not miss the cold, snowy weather we endured this past winter.  We are all on track to meet Spring and, ultimately summer, with a positive attitude,  leaner bodies, smarter minds and a healthier lifestyle.

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Stephanie Bardwell March 20, 2011 at 02:17 PM
You did a great job, all of you. Spring is a much easier time to get outside and eat right, so you got a jump start on it. Here's hoping you continue in the right direction. I'm very proud of all of you. SPB
Sarah Page Kyrcz March 20, 2011 at 02:19 PM
Thanks, big sister! Everyone's encouragment was key to our success. I am looking out at the sunshine and planning a walk this afternoon. Did a bit of spring cleaning and we are well on our way to a bright and "light" spring/summer.
Martha March 21, 2011 at 12:02 AM
Great job, Sarah. That's wonderful that your whole family benefited from the Madison Challenge. It sounds like you all made a lot of choices to be active when sometimes it's easier to be a couch potato. It's funny you mention the soda, as there were at least five days during this Challenge when I wanted a diet coke in the afternoon but opted for water or caffeinated tea instead, just so I wouldn't lose points... and I felt a little guilty when we were on vacation and I ordered soda with lunch. Keep up the healthy habits!
Sarah Page Kyrcz March 21, 2011 at 01:01 AM
Martha ~ It is so interesting that in order to be "healthy" we all really have to keep that in the front of our minds! It is a choice to be healthy, but I think all around us there are teasers and opportunities to not be healthy! You keep up the good work, too. We are all in this together!
Pem McNerney (Editor) March 21, 2011 at 09:45 AM
Sarah, congratulations to you and your family for taking on and completing this challenge, and to everyone else who did as well! I really enjoyed reading about your progress from week to week, and found it inspiring! Look forward to hearing whether the healthy habits stick throughout the rest of the year. I bet they do!
Sarah Page Kyrcz March 21, 2011 at 06:39 PM
Pem ~ You and patch.com gave me the opportunity to write about a really fun, family oriented Madison event. I do hope that it inspired others who were involved with The Madison Challenge and also piqued the interest of those who weren't involved, but may consider it next year! It really is a fun winter event! Helps trudging through winter have more purpose and the race to Spring more fun! Hope to see a lot of fellow Challengers Thursday night.
Pem McNerney (Editor) March 21, 2011 at 08:24 PM
Sarah, all the credit must go to you for pitching the story and executing it so well! Thanks. And look forward to working with you on other stories now that this is coming to a close. Look forward to reading what you think about the event Thursday.

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