Wow, what an exciting feeling to be starting the third and final month of the #Gimme5Challenge! Sixty days ago, my hope was for this strength-training challenge to show women that strength training is about so much more than fitness. When you feel strong, you show up in your life strong. When a woman is strong, she is powerful. I am so inspired by all of you ladies who have joined me on this three-month journey and have stayed committed. It is so special to see your comments and progress!
Checking in with the #Gimme5Challenge Participants
Because we’re two-thirds of the way through the #Gimme5Challenge now, we caught up with some of our featured participants to find out how they’re feeling, where they’re seeing progress, what they’re most proud of, and what their goals are for the remainder of the challenge.
“I’m feeling more comfortable with the weight and more confident in my technique.” —Kara Bryant
“I’ve noticed in workout classes—I can hold a plank longer, do more pushups.” —Lindsey Benoit, Women’s Health‘s communications and special projects director
“I saw my sister for the first time since I started the challenge, and the first thing she said was how much slimmer and stronger I was looking!” —Kara Stewart
Let’s Get Part 3 Started!
I’ve been a trainer for over 20 years. That means I know how easy (and human) it is to lose your commitment to something. Therefore, if you started this challenge with us but have lost your mojo, the good news is that you can hop right back in! We are starting an entirely new month-long program this week, and you can pick back up as though you didn’t miss a beat. Don’t worry: I’ll pretend I didn’t even notice that you were away (wink).
And if this is the first time that you’re reading about the #Gimme5Challenge, I invite you to join us right now! Because I give you the tools to find the right effort levels for your current fitness, you can start this program at the beginning of the challenge or at the beginning of any of the three months! Just be sure to check out this article to learn the ground rules.
A Quick Review of a Few Key Rules
1. Be sure to take pictures of yourself at the start of the challenge to serve as your “before” photos, and take “progress” photos every two weeks throughout the challenge. (We’ve got tips for snapping those here.)
2. Take circumference measurements at the start of the challenge and every two weeks along with your progress photos. (Find out the best way here.)
3. Follow @whgimme5challenge and @hollyperkins on Instagram.
4. Post photos and videos of your workouts using the hashtag #Gimme5Challenge. I’ll answer questions and provide feedback on your videos if you’d like!
The Five Moves
As in past months, I am giving you a totally fresh workout program with new resting times, sets, and weight loads while sticking with the same five moves. So while the programming is very different this month, the moves stay exactly the same:
Be sure to check out my video tutorials of each move here.
#GIMME5CHALLENGE, PART 3: MAY 31 TO JUNE 30
I’ve combined the moves in a totally new way for part three—one of my favorite components of this month is that I put the leg movements together to give your gams a big challenge so they will look extra amaze for summer shorts!
And though the reps stay the same as in part two, I’m giving you a full one-minute rest between all sets. Because you get longer rest phases between sets, you are physiologically able to use heavier weight loads. This is my favorite of the three months because we get to use heavier weights!
Technique trumps everything! Make sure you spend some time watching the video tutorials. If your technique is right, all you have to do is select weight loads for which the last two repetitions of every set are hard. But only the last two reps! The first eight reps should look gorgeous, just like in the video tutorials!
I’ll be checking the Instagram page every day. If you want me to “check your tech,” simply post a video of you performing the moves and tag me @hollyperkins and use the hashtag #Gimme5Challenge. I’ll watch your video and give you some pointers.
So we’re off—congratulations in advance, ladies!
Holly Perkins is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, founder of Women’s Strength Nation, and author of Lift to Get Lean.