Welcome to ERL12! This week  is all about getting you ready for what's to come.

We're going to be touching on the basics here. Each week a new page will appear on the Sunday (Australian time) to ensure that you're able to download your workouts for the week to come. The workouts are designed to take between 20-40 minutes (depending on your workout program) so that they are efficient enough to fit into a busy schedule while still getting your heart pumping.

Things to prepare for the 16th of April, Week 1:
- Have an area to work out in (at least a mat or space you can use)
- Find somewhere you can access a measuring tape to track your progress
- Download the stretching guide
- Join the private Facebook group 
- You may wish to purchase a binder or display folder for the worksheets during the course of the challenge. They'll be available as PDFs for you to print and fill in.
- Download and fill out the Introduction to Mindset Coaching PDF. Work on doing 1 page per day.

Download your plan
Click to open and save


Your Workouts

During the course of ERL12 all training programs will be available for you to choose from: weight loss, tone up, or combination.
Weight Loss: The weight loss program is exactly as the name suggests, a guide to losing weight. This program will focus on burning fat. It should be followed by those who have a main goal of weight loss.
Tone Up: Tone Up is designed for those who don't have lots of weight to lose, but want to look more shredded and feel fitter. The program will focus on increasing your strength and sculpting your body.
Combination: If you want the best of both worlds we have the combination program. Combination will focus on increasing your fitness level, and incorporate more varied workouts.

We advise to choose one program and stick to it throughout the whole twelve weeks. Twelve weeks is the minimum amount of time that we recommend using a training plan for so that you're able to see the best possible results. Some people may notice their body changing very quickly (even within the first week), but for others it can take longer. Give your body 12 weeks before you decide to change your program. After you've completed ERL12 you'll be able to download an eBook to keep.

Making sure you are equipped and ready to go for a new fit & healthy exercise regime is just as important as doing the exercises.
Here are a few handy tips to make sure you stay on track when getting started.

1. Set your times and training days. When you book that time out for your exercise program, you know what you have to do. Schedule your cardio day, your weights day, your rest day and put it in a diary. Stay strong, and let's train that willpower too, don’t give in to going crazy with your diet, unhealthy dinner dates, movie snacks, or ditching when you have training booked, if you do this you're likely to fall behind!

2. Hydrate yourself. Make sure you are always drinking water. By then end of the day if you are dehydrated, you get tired, lethargic and lazy, which means all you feel like doing is going home, ordering take out and sitting on the couch. You will see a huge boost in your energy levels as well as an enhanced ability to burn fat if you're drinking enough water throughout the day.

3. Pack your bag. If you have a busy day the next day with training either side of work or appointments, make sure you pack your gym bag the night before and have it waiting by your door (if you're going out to train), or make sure your workout clothes and mat are reading if you're working out at home. Make a checklist of things: towel, water bottle, supplements, headphones… whatever!

4. Pack your lunch and snacks. If you’re heading to work and you haven’t got your meal prep sorted, what are you eating? Not only is most takeaway food not going to meet your dietary needs, but it’s also expensive. You can meal prep for less that $3.00 per meal. Make sure you have the right snacks for your body. Protein/carbs/fats etc that help you hit your healthy macros. Check Rachel's YouTube channel for some inspiration for now, but we will have more coming exclusively for you in the following weeks.

5. Tunes. Make a gym playlist that motivates you. It can get boring during a workout but if you have something you can enjoy and move to, you can do some extra exercise when you feel that beat drop… even if someone is around you!

6. Research. Make sure you understand the exercises, reps and times before you start. Training is all about technique and ability, if you can’t do something look at other alternatives. If it’s painful seek a physio/massage therapists advice. If you're just unsure contact us, or keep going, re-watch the technique videos and get better at it. There are many ways to do one exercise, so don’t be put off by other peoples techniques, we all have different bodies and different goals.

8. Last, but not least. Track your progress, take a before picture, do measurements, try on clothes that don’t fit you yet and jump on the scales, even book in a body fat scan if you're up for it! All of this combines to indicate your overall achievement at the end of ERL12, but it's something you should be aware of, but not obsessed with. Your weight and size will fluctuate a lot at the start, some people may even gain weight, but then notice their measurements have dropped. Changing a diet can make you bloat due to added fibre, but will go away, muscle makes you put on more weight, even though you have less fat on you, and the scales can lie about your appearance from time to time, so don’t use them as the 'be all, end all' of your results.

Hope you enjoyed these tips and find them handy!
Rachel & The ERL Team


Measurements & Photos

One major way to stay motivated during your journey is with measurements and photographs. Photos and measurements will allow you to see progress, and progress is always empowering. They are also a good way to see if you are just losing fat, or if you are gaining muscle, because just weighing yourself isn't accurate enough. Remember, 10cm of muscle weighs more 10cm than fat, so if you see the scales go up, don't worry, just measure yourself, and if you're exercising and eating healthy food you will probably see the measurements have gone down.

Personally we find that before and after photos are more useful for staying motivated than just regular measurements, but it's still important to record both. Try to take a new photo and measurements every 2 weeks while you are completing ERL12.

We recommend taking your first photos and measurements on the first day of the challenge, in the morning prior to breakfast.

- Make sure the lighting is similar each time you take a photo of yourself for comparison
- Wear figure hugging clothes, or clothes that show your arms/stomach and thighs
- Try to make sure the photograph is from head to toe

- Wear baggy clothing
- Take the photo at night with an artificial light
- Only show half your body (how will you see the progress from all over?)

Weight is a subjective thing to be measuring, but we will record it anyway. Weigh yourself first thing in the morning, not in the afternoon or evening if you can help it. When you re-check your weight later down the track use the scales you originally weighed yourself on. If you can find out what your body fat percentage is do that too - it's more important to know this than your weight, but the tools to measure it are not as easily accessible. 

Get a measuring tape and measure yourself, or if you have another person handy get them to measure you, it will make it more accurate. You are going to measure your chest, waist, hips, arms and thighs.

Chest: measure across the centre of your chest.

Waist: measure around where your belly button is.

Hips: drop your arms by your side, note where your wrist sits, this is where you will measure around your hips.

Arms: we are are measuring the upper arm. To find the middle of your arm each time take the measurement from your shoulder, down to your elbow, divide that number in half, measure around the halfway point on your upper arm.

Thighs: stand up, place on foot up on a low bench, chair, something about 30-40cm off the ground so that your knee is at a right angle. To find the exact middle of your thigh measure from where your thigh meets your hip down to your knee, divide this measurement in half. Take the measurement around your thigh from the halfway point.


Calculating Calories

We will touch on macronutrients and micronutrients later in the program, but for now I thought I'd cover calories. Eating too little can damage your body's ability to burn fat, and eating too much can eventually lead to weight gain! So spend the next 7 days tracking what you're eating so you can see.

We recommend tracking calories daily when starting a new way of eating, and then easing off to tracking a few times per week, and then just one day per week. Obsessing over calories can be both time consuming and exhausting, so it's best to use them to check up on your progress and make sure you're staying on track.

This is the equation I use for calculating how many calories I should be roughly eating a day (also called your BMR... Basal Metabolic Rate, how much you need just to 'survive' a day with a healthy amount of food). This is in my Get Lean Nutrition Guide.

[As an example, let's say 23 year old female who weighs 60kg and is 173cm tall]
BMR = [655 + (9.6 x weight in kilograms) + (1.8 x heigh in centimetres)] - (4.7 x age in years)
Subbing in our example from above
BMR = [655 + (9.6 x 60) + (1.8 x 173)] - (4.7 x 23)
BMR = [655 + 576 + 311.4] - 108.1
BMR = 1542 - 108 (rounded)
BMR = 1434 cal per day

Now, that is for NO exercise. Adding in exercise, I'll use our same hypothetical 23 year old girl.
Sedentary (office job, walking, no hard training) = BMR x 1.1
Light activity (light exercise / sport 1-3 times a week) = BMR x 1.275
Moderate activity (exercise 3-5 times per week) = BMR x 1.45
Very active (hard exercise, sport 6-7 days a week) = BMR x 1.625
Athlete (hard daily exercise, training more than once a day) = BMR x 1.8

So with our same example girl, if she trained moderately her BMR ends up being 1434 x 1.45 = 2079 cal per day. This is to maintain. If you're looking to lose weight, you should reduce this by 300-500 calories, and if you're looking to gain weight, increase it by 200-300.

So here is your blank equation, substitute in your details:
BMR = [655 + (9.6 x _your weight in kg here_) + (1.8 x _your height in cm here_)] - (4.7 x _your age here_)
Once you have the answer to this equation, multiply by the amount of activity you do, as per example above.


Goal Setting

Download the worksheet here