The concept of the 75 Hard Challenge is simple: for 75 days, you do one indoor workout and one outdoor workout while eating 100% clean. You’ll need to get your blood tests done before and after so that you can see how much progress was made with your health. Fitness expert Andy Frisella created this challenge in order to boost people’s confidence, grit, and habits. However, we are seeing it as a dangerous approach to health and fitness. This article will discuss the pros and cons of doing the 75 hard challenge including why you shouldn't do it.
The 75 Hard Challenge began as a podcast and has now been seen 31 million times on TikTok using the hashtags #75HardChallenge and #75Hard. So we decided to look into this tough and strict program to see if it improved or damaged your overall physical and mental health. Its like the old saying goes anybody can do anything for a short period of time right?
What Is The 75 Day Hard Program?
The #75HARD Challenge is a diet and exercise fad that has been sweeping the Internet recently. The challenge lasts 75 days and requires participants to follow strict dietary restrictions, fitness routines, and personal growth guidelines. Cheating is not permitted, and if people break even one of the rules, they must start again at day one.
The 75Hard is pretty much setup for you to fail because you cannot cheat on this challenge. However, some people have been able to pull off the 75 Hard Challenge which is great for them because it shows just how amazing they are! If you do not crave junk food then being on a strict diet may be easy for you however if you struggle with eating healthy foods then you might want to stay away from doing the 75 Hard Challenge.
The thing that makes it so tough is if you mess even 1 rule you have to start all over that is what is a terrible feeling and can lead to much worse habits. Haven't you ever started a workout program only to miss a day then you start all over findally get up to the point you left off with in the beginning then you miss a day again so now you have to start all over?
What we suggests is that you start over at the most that week, but not whole program. Or if you miss just a day jump ahead to the current workout don't look back that can definitely hinder your progress. This will be based on your fitness level as well obviously if you take a few months off from an intense program you probably won't be able to jump right back in safely.
Who Started This 75 Hard Program?
Andy Frisell is the person who started 75 Hard Challenge. He owns a supplement company called 1st Phorm which is a very reputable supplement producer. He also is a well known podcaster and author where the 75 hard challenge was introduced.
He also happens to be a very good marketer I mean almost everywhere look somebody is talking about or doing the 75 Hard Challenge at the time of this writing. So he has branded himself by creating something for free that allows people to purchase things from him or his company.
What are the exact rules of 75 Hard Challenge?
- Follow A Diet: Zero Cheat Meals For 75 Days
- 2 Workouts A Day (One has to be outside)
- Drink A Gallon Of Water Per Day
- Read 10 pages of non-fiction entrepreneur book
- Take a progress pic every single day
There are no concessions, substitutions, or flexible alternatives to these guidelines. You must accomplish all 6 of them for the full 75 days without error. Keep in mind that he came up with this entire system on his own without having any outside advice on it. So tread lightly if you fail at it.
What Is The 75 Hard Diet?
Follow a diet
You can follow any diet and some of the best out there are the paleo diet, the ketogenic diet or even intermittent fasting. The 75 Hard Challenge is not actually a specific type of diet but it does require that you follow no cheat meals. This means if you get to enjoy your sweet treat at night after dinner you cannot do this during the challenge otherwise, you will need to start over again from day one.
We would suggest starting with an easier diet or something more that suits your lifestyle. We always like intermittent fasting or OMAD one meal a day and we sometimes alternate days with that. That works for our lifestyle because we are very busy with multiple businesses along with our small horse farm. The morning I am mainly running around and don't think about food anyway.
With intermittent fasting you have multiple options of course at least start with a 16:8 where you fast for 16 (most of which while you are sleeping) and eat usually 2 meals with a snack during that 8 hour time frame.
OMAD you can eat when you want that one meal. I have done both lunch and dinner which is usually based on my schedule. I also sometimes go 24, 36 or 48 hour window of fasting without eating anything. Especially if I need to reset.
Also with intermittent fasting you can incorporate diets like ketogenic, weight watchers, anything you think will be easy enough to adapt too. Most will go with well balanced which is great.
2 Workouts A Day
Yes not one, but two workouts a day. Is this even healthy? This is always up for debate. Just know that there is no flexibility in the rules of this challenge. So if you miss one workout, tough luck because you need to start over again from day one.
One must be outside and honestly it's not bad at all. If your goal is fitness like ours or even weight loss making sure your cardio gets done outside will help you achieve this goal. If you like to be inside and don't want to go outside, then do what works for your lifestyle.
Our suggestion is to get into a regular workout program our favorites at home are Beachbody Workouts along with the new spin bike workouts they have. You can check those out HERE.
So do a normal workout like a weighted and cardio intense workout 7 days a week. The breakdown of these workouts will probably depend on your goals. This could probably be broken down into 3 weight training workouts with 4 cardio workouts if your goals are to lose more weight than toning. Vice versa for toning and gaining strength where it would look more like 4 weight training workout and 3 cardio.
Then for your additional workout you can simply go for a 45 minute walk especially when just starting out. Then as you get going maybe add in some jogging and eventually some sprints to complete your high intensity workout.
Drink A Gallon Of Water Per Day
Drining one gallon of water a day can be easier than you think. When you are doing this challenge make sure to start drinking more water before the day begins. This can be pretty easy if your goal is weight loss because when you drink a gallon of water makes it very hard for anyone to overeat or binge on carbs especially in the later afternoon
The best way to do this would be with some sort of 32 ounce or bigger container so you have less fillups easier to remember how many ounces you are at as well. The best way to get ahead is to slam 16 ounces of water first thing in the morning. I know you may be thinking, but I will urinate 5 times before i have to go to work. Not so for most and your body will get used to it.
This is what we do first thing when I come downstairs is slam 16 ounces of water and take my vitamins or shake.
Read 10 pages of non-fiction entrepreneur book
10 pages isn't that much for most books these days however if you don't get breaks at work and have kids this can be tough. So sign up for Audible you can get a free trial and free book HERE. This way you can listen while at work or lets say you have an office job and like to get up and walk around on breaks or lunch. You can take your book with you and just listen.
This needs to be a self help, motivational or entrepreneurial book. There are so many out there so take your pick. On of our favorites is Relentless by Tim Grover. This is the same guy who trained Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. Another one of course is Can't Hurt Me by David Goggins. The audible for both of these are awesome with lots of extras. I own the books and kindle versions as well since I read them every few months.
No cheating at all
That includes no alcohol of course this is where most people fail and why I would make your diet simple. Another way I got around the alcohol was drinking seltzer water which are mighty tasty these days. But if you cheat you go back to day 1. I did this around 3-4 times the first time I completed.
Take a progress pic every single day
Every single day the best time is the morning I used to take a quick selfie in the mirror with my shirt off and pic of my weight. I would suggest to try and get your problem area in the pic if possible as you will see progress here if you stick with it.
There are no exceptions or flexible alternatives to these regulations. All six must be completed for the entire 75 days. Keep in mind that he developed all of these on his own without consulting an outside team of dietitians, personal trainers, or counselors.
So if you want to take the plunge and feel hardcore enough go for it. If you don't think you can do that for 75 days there are many options to lead up to this challenge. Even a 30 day window doing these you will see drastic results. But mabe just start for a week going 7-10 days straight before you have a cheat meal or alcoholic beverage.
The choice is your we go over more options and information to get you on the fast track to health below.
Simple Reasons Not To Do 75 Hard
- It's Not Sustainable: 75 days is very long to sustain this diet then what happens when it is over? Back to normal and back to putting the weight on along with bad habits.
- Working out this much not good: for most working out this much may add risk to injury or further hurt injuries you already have. That is why we suggest mixing it up with cardio and weights. You can also add in a yoga/stretching session as well.
- All or nothing mentality can be taxing: All or nothing can become a very bad habit and lead you down a rabbit hole of nonstop failures that shouldn't be. We are human we slip up or at least the bulk of us. One meal isn't going to kill you, but nonstop bad eating will. So taking on more of a 80/20 approach is probably the more successful way to go.
- The Rules Aren't Backed By Athletes or Trainers: Although there are athletes and trainers who love this mentality. This person came up with this out of the blue to make money and market his brand and products. So take that into the approach and you should do fine.
- Extremities Not Needed: Some people need extreme, but most don't especially in the beginning. You may reach a wall where you need to get more extreme and push the limits further. You push to hard to fast in the beginning it can lead to extreme failure. Failure in many forms including injury, relationship tension, mental fatigue, etc.
What Can You Do Instead?
Take a more progressive approach get involved with a program and nutritional plan that is backed by science, athletes, and trainers. We follow mostly Beachbody programs that get us to where we need to be. And they provide a lot of variety everything from cardio, to weightlifting, to even running or cycling is provided in the programs at Beachbody all for one low price that you can even TRY FOR FREE!. Check out your Free Trial HERE!.
Can You Modify The 75 Hard Challenge?
Yes you can make some changes like adding more rest days in between workouts. It would be better to do workout out for 45 minutes at a time and wake up the next day with no intense cardio sessions before breakfast.
Can You Get Results on A More Moderate Plan? You can get results even on just meal prepping your meals, but you need to make sure you are not cutting out any major food groups. Or if it is too restrictive make some changes to see results still in a more healthy approach that will maintain your sanity and progressions into the future.
I think I would start with just meal prepping then add workouts after that get yourself back on track hopefully this helps someone who wants to start and doesn't know where to start.
You need to focus number one on your eating that is what will make all the difference. The more you workout the more you are going to want to eat. You can modify the challenge anyway you see fit below is a modified version we came up with. Is There a 75 Easy Challenge? Yes there is below:
Modified 75 Hard Challenge
- Follow A Simple Diet – Intermittent fasting is simple or weight watchers is simple. With intermittent fasting technically you don't need to change anything except skip one meal a day.
- 5 Days A Week Do One (20-30 Minute) Workout + Average 10,000 steps a day over the week. Pretty simple right there are 2 programs that will kick your butt in Beachbody that are 20 minutes and 30 minutes long. That is transform :20 and Insanity Max: 30. No weights are needed actually no equipment at all is needed for one of them. Get your free trial here.
- One Cheat Meal and Alcoholic Beverage A Week – who doesn't like a nice slice of pizza with some wine or beer. This will not kill your goals.
- Take One Pic A Week Of Progress and Weight – That's it once a week take a pic in the morning and a pic of your weight
- Drink 8 glasses a day – yes the old myth of drinking 8 glasses of 8 ounces a day try it
- Read or listen 10 minutes a day – doesn't matter pages just set aside 10 minutes anytime of day to do this.
Taking it a day at a time is fine, but just make sure you take into account your overall weekly average not just if you miss a day you have failed. No one day is going to lead to failure or success it is consistency that will get you there.
75 Hard Before And After
Below are 75 Hard Challenge Results that are sure to motivate.
The 75 Hard Challenge is a way to boost people’s confidence, grit, and habits. However it can be seen as an all-or-nothing approach to health and fitness that has some pretty crazy rules on diet and workouts. If you want to try this challenge but are afraid of the risks involved with the extreme nature of the program, there are many ways to modify or moderate your plan so that you still get results without risking injury or other consequences too much. You may even find benefits in starting out slow by meal prepping before adding more workouts down the line if they become needed for progressions into future goals .
I personally have been working out with Beachbody programs for a few years now and they are great, I know you can find some results but if your really want to get into better shape there is no short cuts.
Maybe I will try out the challenge again just to see what it is like, but most likely I would start slow and meal prep with some workouts here and there that way you don't over do yourself in the beginning of your fitness journey which can be a recipe for disaster for beginners!
Other Questions On 75 Hard Challenge
Is 75 Hard Unhealthy?
75 Hard Challenge can be very unhealthy if you aren't following all the rules. It can lead to extreme fatigue, injury risk, unhealthy relationships with food and alcohol.
It can also be healthy, but only for the short term at somepoint you need to learn to adapt much longer term healthy habits. This can be done with Beachbody programs just follow their nutrition plan and you'll be good to go.
Is THe 75 Day Challenge Healthy?
The 75 Day Challenge is what you make of it and everybody will have a different experience. It is healthy for thos 75 days if you don't push the limits on the workouts and do either a cardio or weight workout mixed in with some walking or sometime on the elliptical.
Other than that yes it is extremely healthy with Beachbody programs you can modify it to fit your needs.
The results of the challenge are not worth the risk for most in my opinion. You'll be risking injury, over training, and just burning yourself out on fitness if that's what you're into then give this a shot. Otherwise it's not worth the risk.
Can you have a rest day on 75 Hard?
Technically you have to do 2 workouts for 75 days straight on the 75 Hard Challenge so no rest days are allowed. However just modify the challenge to include one rest day a week.
On that rest day if you feel like you are cheating maybe just have a stretch and mobility workout then still do your 45 minute walk as well. This will be just like a day off and will help you going forward with the workouts. Make the 75 Hard Challenge customizable to fit your life while making you feel uncomfortable.