The HWHLC Experiment: Hubby & Wife Healthier Life Challenge

In nearly fifteen years of marriage, Hubby and I have discovered we have a handful of conversations on repeat. It’s natural, I think. Late nights and Sunday mornings in bed seem to be the time we most often revisit life-dreams, new ideas, and big plans. While amid one such repeat convo, we stumbled upon what we’ve decided to call The HWHLC Experiment.

A little back-story:

Hubby and I have tried just about everything when it comes to sticking to workout routines. We’ve been members at every gym in town at one point or another, not to mention we have an in-home gym. I “belong” to a crew of gals who try to workout weekday mornings in the predawn hours outside or in-home. Hubby is a subscribed member to the local noon-ball crew text stream. We both play seasonal sports, but are lackluster piss-poor participants when it comes to year-round leagues. We have online subscriptions to workout videos, apps, and every other “this is going to work” thing that has come along.

And when I say, “work,” I don’t mean we have aspirations of looking like cover models. I mean work, as in, breaking the cycle of living a real life Groundhog’s day of “starting over” (with regards to gaining strength, stamina, flexibility, and endurance) every few weeks (or months) because neither of us is any good at consistency.

Then there are all the other crucial components of a balanced “healthy” life. It isn’t just about consistent exercise, is it? There’s mental health and spiritual health to consider.

I’m getting a little more tired just thinking about all of it.

The question Hubby and I spend so much time pondering together is: How do we motivate ourselves to prioritize our health (as it applies to the whole person) in this wickedly crazy first world suburbia family reality we call life?

It seems like we’ve tried a lot of things already to no avail. Consistency escapes us.

Ah…but what about…making it a competition?

Bingo.

Now we’re getting somewhere.

If there’s one thing Hubby and I both love, it’s to win…especially against one another. Competitive (or some variation of the word) is probably in the top three descriptors my friends and family would use to describe me, and for Hubby, it’d likely be in the top five. We are both from athletic backgrounds and whether it is Scrabble or a game of 1-on-1 on the basketball court, neither one of us is going to give up without a fight.

We put our brains together and outlined some simple (for the sake of tracking) rules for the HWHLC:

This is based on a point system. The following are tabulated on a weekly basis and points are earned or lost in exchange of the following listed activities…

  1. Every continuous 30 minutes of purposeful physical activity = 1 Point
  2. Every continuous 30 minutes of non-work-related reading = 1 Point
  3. Every continuous 15 minutes of prayer/spiritual study = 1 Point
  4. To bed (lights out) at or before 10:00 PM = 1 Point
  5. Each alcoholic beverage = Loss of 1 Point

Winning the highest number of points would probably be enough, but we wanted to sweeten the deal. Thus, at the end of each week (weeks run Saturday through Friday at 5:00PM), the person with the most points gets to wield their veto and/or choice power for the duration of the weekend. What restaurant, which movie, specific adult shenanigans—the options are endless and the WINNER wields the power.

We both committed to playing this game for eight weeks. Game begins (began) Monday, October 2, 2017 and ends (round 1, at least) on Friday, November 24, 2017 *Boxing Day/Black Friday.

We both committed to documenting points—journaling (either written or video) each day and exchanging notes at the end of each week to determine the winner and winner’s “trophy” choices.

I’d like to point out that we intentionally selected our activities based on our own very specific “health” wants and needs. Likewise, because of the nature of our relationship and the mutual respect that exists, we both feel comfortable with the “loss of power” that will take place for the second place finisher at the end of each week. If another couple were to do this challenge, both the list of point earning/losing activities and the winner’s “prize” might look different. You do you and we’ll do us.

Stay tuned, we’ll be back intermittently on the blog and on the The Tall Mom Facebook page with updates, Facebook Live Checkins, and more on the great HWHLC experiment.

Oh and…wish me luck!