Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Next Challenge: May 1st-June 25th!

This a great time to join Great in 8 Weeks! Is your body Summer ready? ;) It can be with help from our 8 Week Program!

Go here to sign-up for this challenge.

Great in 8 Weeks Basics - Team Motivation for a Healthier You!
Team efforts are needed for optimal success!  Individuals Welcome!

“Great in 8 Weeks” is a program designed to help you achieve health and happiness. It is a simple plan of healthy eating and healthy living, resulting in possible weight loss and probable gain of healthy habits. Ask someone who has participated in the past – they will tell you it works if you diligently follow the program!!

The program will run for eight weeks. The cost to participate is $25. ($5 goes to administrator fees, and the other $20 will go toward prizes.) If you have been looking for direction in health and if you think you have what it takes to be a member of a competitive team, please consider signing up for this program! Whether you have a few pounds (or more) to lose, or if you wish to build stamina and strength and develop a healthier life, it will be fun for all.

Sign up as teams of four (4) and each team will select a team captain.  YOUR TEAM is your best support system! Each team will be encouraged to come up with a team name.  Individuals may also sign up, but they will only be able to earn the individual prizes.

Basic Rules:
Each day you will keep track of your points earned and record them on your tracking sheet.
Points you can earn are:
Ø     10 points – eating 10 foods from the positive food list which includes fruits, vegetables, whole wheat, low fat dairy, and proteins.
Ø     10 points – eating 5 fruits and vegetables as part of your 10 positive foods.
Ø     10 points for drinking the specified ounces of water.
Ø     20 points for exercising at least 31 minutes a day.
Ø       5 points for not eating after 8:00 PM.
Ø       5 points for completing a daily calendar task of your choosing. (see attached list)
Ø        5 points for spending a few minutes in meditation/prayer each day.
Ø        5 points for spending a few minutes in uplifting reading/scriptures each day.

At the end of the week you will add up the points you earned as well as any bonus points and also your calculated percentage points for each pound lost and report those to your team leader.

At the end of the 8 weeks – the top 2 teams and the top individuals with the most points will earn a share of the money collected from participants.  A bonus prize will also be awarded to the person with the highest percentage inches lost.  You may only earn 1 prize so at least 12 individuals will receive a share of the winnings.

If you are willing to give your best effort, this program is for you!  You will develop habits for better nutrition, better health, and a better relationship with God.  Success is just around the corner, so read on for more details.

For more information on what our program entails, please visit these previous posts:

Monday, April 3, 2017

Great in 8 Weeks Rules

 Great In 8 Weeks Introductory Information

Honor System of Course!!!

The “Great in 8 Weeks” Program will run for eight weeks, all scores need to be reported weekly before 12:00 pm PT. Each participant will be provided tracking sheets.  (You will need to print them off yourself or use the excel or Google Doc version.) These sheets will aid you in recording all your points and pounds lost.

Weigh yourself at home every Sunday night or Monday morning (recommended). We’ll use the honor system of course!

The weeks will run from Monday through Sunday night. Total points should be input in the Google Doc or reported to your team captain early every Monday morning and are due by noon on Monday.

On Monday morning you will weigh yourself for your starting weight.  Also, you will take your measurements within the first few days, as instructed in the daily calendar task list. You will then weigh-in once a week (Monday morning) and will re-measure ONCE, at the end of the 8 weeks. For each pound and inch lost, ten points are earned. In addition to lost pound and lost inch points. Input all your info into the Google doc assigned to your team.  Only your team members and the administrators can see this document - Your privacy is strictly implied and maintained.

There will be prizes!

Remember this will be a team effort. Please pass the word about this fun program of health and happiness… the more people who join, the more teams, and the more fun we will have!!

Although we believe that motivation and success will be greater with a team, individuals are also welcome to participate and have a chance to win the individual prizes.

The “Great in 8 Weeks” Director for this round is Chelsea Barrus and assistant Vera Jones. If you would like to sign up or if you have any questions, please email us at:


The program runs for eight weeks

Everything is based on the honor system!  As administrators we try very hard to make sure the scores are totaled correctly and information is accurate - we make mistakes, others make mistakes - we correct them as quickly as possible.  Please keep this in mind and if you have an issue, please direct your questions to an administrator.  We have people across the United States participating and we try our best to make sure everyone is honest.  We reserve the right to request before and after pictures as necessary to prove accuracy of information given.  

We are not experts on health. We are just concerned women who have benefited from the Great in 8 program and want to share it with others.  I have verified the wellness of the plan with others in the health field, but encourage you to seek the advice of your doctor if you have any concerns.

Organize a team of 4 (family, friends, neighbors – you can even be from different states!). Pick a captain for your team.  Each team will figure out how to work together to achieve its goals.  All teams compete for a final cash prize at the end! Cost to participate is $25/individual, $100/team. 
Before the contest starts fill out the signup form. 

Prizes will be awarded once at the end of the program.  Money prizes are based on the number of people in the program x $20 ($5 will go toward administrative fees).  **At minimum the pot will be divided between the top two teams, the individuals with the top three highest overall points for all 8 weeks and the person with highest percentage of inches lost. Once we know how many participants there will be the actual divisions and amount will be posted. Also you may only win one prize – meaning if you are on the winning team and the overall point’s winner – you will win ONLY the higher of the two prizes.  We want as many winners as possible. This way 12 people will receive a portion of the pot.  (If you feel this is unfair, then perhaps this group is not the one for you.) In reality though, everyone who participates and works the program WINS – you will feel and look healthier.  You will also have a chance at some random drawings for anyone who receives at least 450 points for the week.  This way everyone has a reason to keep doing their best, to the very end.  Typically the highest payout is about $125 depending on the number of participants.

You must track points daily on the point tracking charts included with this invitation. You can download it to use in excel or in a Google Doc, or print off and use in a notebook. Weeks will run from Monday morning to Monday morning (weigh-in first thing every Monday morning). Total your points and input them in your assigned Google Doc or turn them into your team captain early Monday morning. TEAM SCORES ARE DUE to Vera Jones by 12:00pm PT either through completing your google doc or emailing them. We will announce the individual and team standings for the week via email by Tuesday. Teams who submit points by 12:00 pm PT on Monday will receive a 5 POINT BONUS to their weekly team score.  ONLY the GI8 Director adds this 5 point bonus.  Scores posted in a timely manner are VERY important!! At the end of Week 8 all points must be in by Monday at 6:00 pm.  In order to get final results out in a timely manner this deadline must be kept.  If we have not received your report, you will be contacted via phone no later than 6:00 pm.  Late points will not be counted. (We understand technical difficulties happen and consideration will be made.)

Points are earned daily for the following categories:

 Positive/Good Food: See included sheet. Earn 10 points for eating 10 servings of positive foods. You MUST eat 10 positive good foods every day.  Five (5) of these points can/will include the five daily fruits & vegetables required.  You can eat more than one serving of the same positive/good food!  So you get 10 points for eating at least 5 fruits or vegetables and 5 positive foods each day. Points are all-or-nothing in this category. 

 5+ Fruits & Vegetables: Earn 10 points if you eat a combined total of 5 fruits and vegetables. Don’t forget to count the fruits and veggies from the good food box. For example, if you eat a banana, you get one POSITIVE FOOD point and one FRUIT/VEGGIE point. You MUST eat a combination of 5 fruits/veggies to get the points. All or nothing! (You will have greater results if you eat more vegetables than fruits, but this is up to you – both count the same)

Negative Food: See included sheet. Subtract 2 points for every serving of food eaten off the negative food list (over the 2 freebie limit.  See “Freebies” at end of Rules). No maximum. L We are not tracking calories, but they do add up!   A good way to track calories, if you choose to, is by using an app on your phone.  “My fitness pal” and “Lose It” are both good ones that are free.

Neutral Food: See included sheet.  These foods do not count against you but do not add to your (10) positive foods required per day.  Try to limit your neutral food consumption to 3 servings or less per day for best results.

Water Points: Earn 10 points for drinking plenty of water every day. Requirement:
Week 1: 32 oz (4 cups)
Week 2: 40 oz (5 cups)
Week 3: 48 oz (6 cups)
Week 4: 56 oz (7 cups)
Weeks 5-8: 64 oz (8 cups)

Exercise: Points are earned as follows:
15-20 min. = 10 points
20-30 min. = 15 points
31-45 min. = 20 points
46+ min. = GOOD FOR YOU!

** - I have tried to simplify this - so please read -
20 points MAX for up to 5 days a week. Exercise can be done in segments (e.g. 15 minutes in the morning, 15 minutes after work, etc.). Just get moving! Get your heart rate up and EXERCISE!!
The maximum for exercise points in one week will be 100.  
If you exercise on the 6th or 7th day - good for you!  The only points available will be that it can be used for your daily task assignment.

After 8 PM: Earn 5 points if you eat NOTHING after 8 p.m. Eat after 8…put on weight! (However, if necessary you can have one serving of a fruit or vegetable and not have it count against you.)

Daily Calendar Task List: Earn 5 points by performing a daily calendar challenge. These challenges are to help you improve yourself on a daily basis.  This list is at the end.  They must be done each day.  You cannot do two in one day and count it for two days.

PERSONAL Prayer or Meditation: Earn 5 points for daily personal prayer. If you don’t pray, spend a few minutes in quiet meditation. There is a close relationship between your body and your spirit. Strengthen your spirit as you strengthen your body.

Daily Scripture Study or Uplifting Reading:  Earn 5 points for daily scripture study. Here’s your chance to read/study next week’s Sunday School lesson or do your own personal scripture study.  This could also include reading something uplifting or positive.

Extra points – Counted only on Sunday
Weekly Calendar Bonus – 10 points can be earned on Sunday for completing a week long calendar task each day for 6-7 days (you may skip one day if needed). So on Sunday you can earn the 5 points for the daily calendar task and a bonus of 10 points for doing a week long challenge (See the 7 days consecutive challenge list). 

Additional Rules:
Weekly Points for Weight Loss:  You will receive points based on a percentage formula.
Weigh yourself at home at the end of every week (Sunday night if needed, but is best Monday morning as soon as you get up).  If you use the electronic tracker the points will be calculated for you.  If you are doing it by hand calculate your WEIGHT LOSS POINTS (round to the nearest whole number) using the following formula.


For example if you weigh 145.3 lbs. at the end of Week 3, and at the end of Week 4 you weigh 143.4 lbs then calculate as follows:
WEIGHT LOSS THIS WEEK           = 145.3 – 143.4
                                                            = 1.9 lbs lost

WEIGHT LOSS POINTS                 = 1.9 lbs ÷ 145.3 lbs x 3000 = 39.22 or 39 points (rounded) for Week 4

Another example if you weigh 224.3 lbs. at the end of Week 3, and at the end of Week 4 you weigh 218.6 lbs then calculate as follows:

WEIGHT LOSS THIS WEEK           = 224.3 – 217.6
                                                            = 6.7 lbs lost

WEIGHT LOSS POINTS                 = 6.7 lbs ÷ 224.3 lbs x 3000 = 89.61 or 90 points (rounded) for Week 4

**If you gain weight, do not minus points, but when you lose again, go from your previous low. NO DOUBLE DIPPING on weight points!  Again this is calculated correctly in the electronic log – so I encourage you to use it – either in Excel or Google Docs.

Here is an example of how weight loss evens out:

Beg WeightEnd Week 1lbs. lostPoints Received

Inches Lost: At the beginning of the program you will measure yourself and report your combined total inches along with your weekly points. At the end of the 8-week program, you will re-measure yourself.  You will earn points based on a similar calculation as the weight, using a percentage formula.  Inches lost / Beginning overall inches * 3000 (Please use only whole, .25, .50, and .75 inches.) Points will ONLY be added at the END of the program! We will calculate your percentage inches lost using the beginning and final measurements to get the 1st place winner in this category.

Freebies : Everyone will be given 4 free negative food points per week. This means you can eat 2 servings off the negative list and not have them count against you. You don’t have to eat anything bad if you don’t want to.  Example of 1-serving off the negative list:  small French fries at McDonald’s, in a paper holder, is one serving of negative foods. Whether you eat a whole serving or a partial serving of a negative food it still counts as -2 points.

Free Meals
If you have an anniversary or birthday during this round you are allowed ONE free meal.

*In addition, if you have a major immediate family event such as a wedding or 50th anniversary celebration, you may choose to take an extra free day.

You may also have a free meal if you do a big event, i.e. a 10K, 1/2 marathon, big hike, etc.

We will also announce free meals for certain holidays from time to time, such as Valentine's, Mother's Day, Father's Day, etc.  Usually on these days you still need to get in all your fruits and vegetables, but no negatives are counted for the day.

During the 8 weeks you may choose ONE FULL DAY to eat whatever you want on that day. Give yourself the MAXIMUM NUMBER of points that day – 70 points. The only thing you have to accomplish on your free day is your 7-day challenge - otherwise you can take points for food, scripture study, prayer, etc. as if you had completed them.  This is not to say you have to skip everything, but you can and still get the 70 points.
But during the 8 weeks you ONLY get ONE Free Day. 

Of course you don't have to use any of the free days - you will get out of the program what you put in to it - so use these days at your own discretion.

If you have a mild cold or other minor illness, just make the small changes you need to in order to continue to earn points. If you are truly too sick to earn some of the points (i.e. unable to keep food down or get out of bed) go ahead and give yourself the points you would have earned if you weren't sick. Just be honest in reporting only what you would have earned, and get right back going as soon as your body will let you.  (There is a maximum of 3 sick days during the 8 weeks) This is an honor system and you know when you are too sick to eat or exercise.  If you have an ongoing issue, please discuss it with the administrator.

Note: You have to perform the 7-day calendar task at least 6 days, sick or not to get the 10 bonus points.

Fast Sundays – For Religious Purposes
There will be two fast Sundays during this 8 week session. On these two days you do NOT have to eat all of the food requirements. Instead, you will shoot for 1/3 of the requirements for food and water, which is 2 fruits/veggies and 4 positive foods, plus 1/3 of the required water. Keep in mind that fruits/veggies count as positive food points, so it will be easy to get in the other 2 good foods you need.

Ideal Weight 
**only one member per team may take the average, so plan accordingly. Their beginning weight will be calculated based on the average weight of all participants in the challenge, not just your teams.
You may only take the average at the beginning of the challenge. (Many participants work hard and don't lose any weight from week to week, so this is why it's at the beginning or not at all) You will be the cheerleader for your team. The better they do, the better you will do.  For example, if your teammates lose 4#, 6# and 2#: their total of 12#/3= 4# or 40 points for you!!  THIS WILL ALLOW YOU TO HAVE A FIT MEMBER ON YOUR TEAM WITHOUT NEGATIVELY AFFECTING YOUR TEAM POINTS.  Someone taking the average will not be eligible for individual prizes, but will be eligible for weekly and team prizes.

If you are pregnant or become pregnant during the 8 weeks, you may still participate using the Ideal Weight rule above.  Just assume that you are at your ideal weight and use the average of the other team members as your weekly weight loss.

Helpful Hints
Plan to get the 460 program points each week. If weight loss is your goal, you will likely lose it easily if you get the base 460 points each week.  This is achieved by earning the maximum 70 points 5 days a week,  and the 10 extra points for the 7 day calendar challenge. 

§  Exercise first thing in the morning. It helps jump start your metabolism and increase brainpower throughout the day!

§  Watch your serving sizes!  Check out what a serving size is (easy to do on the internet) and how many calories there are in the foods you eat. For example, not all nuts are created equal.

§  Try to eat fruits and/or veggies with each meal. REMEMBER, there are a lot of fruits and veggies out there. Think outside your ‘normal box’ of apples, oranges, broccoli, carrots, and bananas. If you eat fruit and/or veggies at breakfast, you will find it very easy to get in at least 5 during the day!
·       One trick we have found that really helps us eat our veggies is to precut a wonderful mix of veggies to use in meals. If you store in glass containers they last quite a surprising amount of time! (It will NOT last nearly as long if stored in plastic!)
·       Have veggies all diced up small ahead of time. Try using green, yellow, orange and/or red bell peppers, green onions, Roma tomatoes, cilantro, Italian parsley and mushrooms.

§  Eat good-food packed meals and snacks. Great examples include omelets with veggies, sandwiches with lots of veggies, or smoothies with yogurt, milk, fruit, and veggies.

§  Try to limit or cut down on artificial sweeteners – it is helpful to get used to things less sweet. Learn more about them and you may want to cut them out completely!

§   Update favorite recipes to healthier versions so you can get more good-food points/reduce bad-food points. For example:
·       Add extra veggies to casseroles, skillet meals, or pastas.
·       Yogurt or applesauce can be substituted for oil in recipes, or avocado can be substituted for butter.
·       Do a little research online to see when these substitutions would be appropriate & how much to substitute.

§  Measure the required number of ounces of water into one big pitcher and drink water only from that pitcher. When it’s gone, you’ve gotten all your water! Or, use standard water bottles from the store. They are usually around 16.9 ounces. Reuse one bottle – drink four bottles a day and you’ve met the 64 ounce water requirement.

§  Print out the Daily Calendar Task List and cross off items as you complete them.

Like the Facebook page for recipes, ideas, and sharing.  Great in 8 Weeks

 Other Helpful websites:
· (a free site with free calorie counter and more!)
· (this site is designed for moms, but the information is great for anyone!)
· (to determine ideal body weight)
·       data-blogger-escaped-comment-[if !supportLists]·       data-blogger-escaped-comment-[endif] (to determine daily protein needs)