CFSBK’s Diary: Look, Feel, and Perform Better Challenge + Paleo Potluck

Starting January 1, CFSBK kicked off our annual Look, Feel, and Perform Better Challenge. While we think that it’s best to act in accordance with your goals and values all (or at least, most) of the time, we also recognize that many people use markers like the beginning of the year to try and create positive changes. The Challenge is extended to the entire CrossFit South Brooklyn community, and is six weeks of a collective kickstart into healthier nutrition and recovery habits. Visit the link above to see our description of the Challenge, along with some forums we set up to help encourage participants and answer questions. We've also included some key details below...

We had about 100 people sign up this year, at $30 per person. The fee is used to offset some of the costs associated with running the Challenge, as well as making it more "real" and requiring a bit of tangible investment from the participants. If the cost of entry is too low, people sign up on a whim and are less likely to follow through. The Challenge is not really a money maker for us when you factor in paying one of our coaches to manage and support people through the program, rentals for tables, supplies, etc. for the two potlucks we host, and the value of the prizes we offer the top winners. But we consider it an investment in our membership. I think the "return" on this happens when people see positive changes happening with their bodies, which strengthens their commitment to their fitness and to the gym.

Before the Challenge starts, we host an info session (pictured below) that addresses the nature of the program and its intent. As mentioned, we also host two potlucks, which are open to the entire community. The first doubles as a New Years/holiday party and the second one includes an awards ceremoney for the Challenge winners and information about "re-entry" into post-Challenge life.

Technical Logistics
We used for people to submit their "before" photos and answer a couple quick questions, and the site also hosts a follow-up questionnaire and photo submission for the end of the Challenge. Wufoo is an easy-to-use site where people can safely and privately upload information to which only a designated coach has access. One of our members also created a point tracker so people can easily enter in their points each day.

Who Wins?
The program is called the Look, Feel, and Perform Better Challenge very intentionally. We want people making positive adaptations in each of those categories. "Winners" are chosen based on how participants improve those three paramaters:

Look: Before and after picture comparison
Feel: Based on the participant's write-up. We also consider how successful they were with executing their plan and what kind of personal and health benefits they achieved.
Perform: We also have participants perform a capacity test before and after the Challenge to get a metric for their fitness improvements. This year, we did a 10-minute "Cindy" followed by two minutes of rest, then three minutes of rowing for max calories. The tracker linked and mentioned above also provides participants with point totals based on  their behavior, so that both participants and judges can quantitatively see who adhered most faithfully to their plan.

First place: two free months or 5xW memberships ($460 value each)
Second place: Lululemon shopping experience (donated from a local store)
Third place: portion of a meat share from our CSA (donated from the farm)

(Prizes are awarded to both a male and female.)

Final Thoughts
I would consider this a very "hands-on" Challenge that requires a significant investment of time and resources from the gym. Regardless, we think it's totally worth it. You can run a much simpler program and still positively affect peoples' lives—as long as they stick with it. Just some food for thought. (Pun intended.)

A couple weekends ago, we hosted the first Paleo Potluck to celebrate the Challenge's halfway point. Here’s a short clip of the event in full swing.

This video was first posted on CFSBK's Instagram account. Follow us to track our random hijinks, including an upcoming Mario Kart 64 Tournament! In future articles, we’ll offer some tips for organizing community events at your affiliate.


Does your affiliate run some sort of challenge for your members related to performance and/or nutrition?

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Reader Comments (1)

Great post! Loved reading about how CFSBK is doing their challenge (gave me some great ideas!). We are also in the middle of a nutrition challenge at Big Mountain Crossfit in Montana. 2.5 Weeks in, so far, so good! Keep up the great posts!! :)

February 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa Richardson

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