Everything You Need To Know About The 75 Day Hard Challenge
A new year and a new challenge: two things that can kickstart you right into finally becoming the best version of yourself, physically and mentally.
The challenge we’re going to talk about in this article blew up on social media in 2021, and you’ll still find TikTokers and other platform influencers taking it on afresh in 2023. It’s called the 75-day Hard Program (or 75 Hard, for short), and by the time we’re done here, you’re going to know everything you need to know to tackle it yourself (including best practices for staying hydrated with electrolytes!).
What Is The 75 Day Hard Challenge?
The 75 Hard challenge is a daily regimen designed to help you self-improve not just your body, but your mind and your soul, as well. More specifically, it’s a transformative multi-faceted program with strict requirements for things like:
- How often and how long to work out (and where)
- How much water you should drink in a day
- How long your shower should be
- How many pages of a book you should read
But wait, there’s more! (We weren’t kidding when we called this challenge “multi-faceted”!)
You must also stick to a diet, although the choice of diet is up to you. There are also a couple of other, smaller requirements, but there’s a kicker to it, too (which we’ll explain in just a little bit).
Where did this program come from, you may ask. It was developed by a man named Andy Frisella, who is a CEO of a company that sells supplements, as well as a huge proponent of nutrition, fitness, and self-improvement. He’s also a motivational speaker and the host of the REAL AF podcast.
Frisella designed the 75 Hard challenge steps and rules to help people change their lives and attain 6 specific character traits:
With these qualities, you’ll have the tools to conquer whatever goals or problems you have in your life, both personally and professionally. That includes improving your overall health.
What Are The 75 Hard Steps?
Ready to learn the steps (also known as “tasks”) to the 75 Hard challenge? Here they are.
Step 1: Eat and stick to any diet of your choosing.
Step 2: Perform two 45-minute workouts every day (just make sure one of them is outside).
Step 3: Drink a whole gallon of water every day.
Step 4: Read 10 pages of a nonfiction book.
Step 5: Take a photo each day to show your progress over time.
Now that you know the steps, let’s go through each of them in more detail.
1. Eat A Diet Of Your Choosing
You must choose and stick to a diet of your choosing for 75 days. Sounds easy right? There are just two caveats: you can’t drink alcohol and you mustn’t cheat. If you do either one, you have to start over.
That can definitely be a challenge. To go more than two months without ever having a cheat meal on a diet is tough. But for some people, going without even a sip of alcohol in that whole time is even more of a challenge.
But then, that’s what this is: a challenge. It’s supposed to be hard. Otherwise, how will you learn, grow, and transform from it, which is the purpose of going through it in the first place?
Because of how difficult this step can be, it’s best to be realistic about the diet you want to go on. It needs to be one that you won’t mind eating for 75 days straight with no variation. Keeping your health goals (and limitations, as well, including any health conditions you may have) in mind will be your guiding star
2. Perform Two 45-Minute Workouts Every Day (One Of Them Outside)
This step can be incredibly challenging for people with busy schedules or who aren’t used to working out so much (or so often). It can also be a breaking point, especially because of the rule that you must do at least one of the workouts outside. It doesn’t matter what the weather is - neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night is an excuse to stop or “take a break” from the 75 Hard challenge.
With that in mind, before you start the 75 Hard program, do lots of preparation. For example, make sure you have a safe space to exercise outside, preferably on your lawn so you can feel the grass and attune your senses to the nature around you.
The good news is you can choose the form of your workout, so you have a little bit of control in that arena. Just keep in mind the frequency with which you’ll have to perform whichever exercise program you choose. Remember, too, your level of fitness and your limits. Don’t choose a workout that forces you to overwork and hurt yourself. The 75 Hard challenge is supposed to be transformative, not debilitating!
3. Drink A Whole Gallon Of Water Every Day
It may not seem like a big deal to drink an entire gallon of water every day. But consider this: if you’re like most people, you struggle to remember to drink just two or three 8 oz glasses of water during the day. Coffee doesn’t count, either. It must be water.
To ensure you get the whole gallon in, you must be mindful and start drinking early in the day. If it helps, break it up into parts. There are about sixteen 8 oz glasses of water in a gallon, so you could drink eight in the morning, six in the afternoon, and two in the evening.
Just try to avoid drinking too much water right before bed. Otherwise, you’ll have to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, which will make you tired and less motivated to continue the 75 Hard challenge the next day.
Another important thing to remember is that drinking water without electrolytes won’t keep you hydrated at optimal levels. We have some tips for how to stay hydrated with electrolytes during the 75 Hard further down.
4. Read 10 Pages Of A Non-fiction Book
Even if you’re not much of a reader, you still can’t skip this crucial step of the 75 Hard challenge. Remember when we said this regimen was multi-faceted? This is one of those facets.
But it can’t just be any old non-fiction book. It’s supposed to be about self-improvement and personal growth. Both can apply to any number of things: your health, your outlook on life, your spirituality, your mental focus, your daily habits… the list goes on.
To decide on a self-improvement book and read 10 pages out of it every day, think about your goals for yourself. What do you want to work on? What are the gaps in your personal life that you want to fill?
When you’ve answered those questions, search for books on your chosen topic on Amazon or a used bookstore, find one that’s well rated, and purchase a physical copy of it (no e-books or audiobooks on your tablet or phone allowed; it must be physical paper). Then squeeze your reading time in whenever it’s most convenient..
5. Take A Photo Each Day To Show Your Progress Over Time
We’ve finally reached task number 5. This is probably the easiest one (at least physically) because all you have to do is take a photo of yourself each day of the 75 Hard challenge. The purpose of this step is to show your progress over time, from day one to the last.
For this task, your entire body and face should be visible in every photo. You can keep your clothes on if you want, but the point is to see every little change in your body, not just the big ones. So in most cases, the less clothes, the better.
This may not be easy for everyone to do with confidence. After all, many of us don’t want to look at our bodies and see what we perceive as all our imperfections. But it’s your body, and by taking photos of yourself daily over the course of 75 days, you may just come to love it for that reason if no others.
What Are The Rules Of 75 Hard?
Earlier, we talked about the 75 Hard challenge coming with a kicker. That kicker is that no matter how easy - or difficult - the steps, you must perform them all every single day for 75 days straight. If you miss a step or a day, you’ve lost the challenge and must start all over again.
Let’s say that again: if you miss a day, miss a step/task, or make a mistake on your step/task, you have to start all over again. The same goes if you have a cheat meal on your diet or drink alcohol.
This is by design. Frisella told Today that the 75 Hard program is supposed to be, well, hard. You’re not supposed to get around or skip over the difficult bits. If you do, you’re not doing the challenge correctly.
We can’t emphasize enough the importance of doing lots of careful preparation and planning before you start day 1. This challenge may help you self-improve and reinvigorate your physical and mental health, but to do so, you need to choose a diet and a workout plan that you can realistically carry out.
You also need to prepare to stay hydrated. And we don’t just mean by drinking water alone. There’s something else you need if you’re going to be able to keep up the 75 Hard: electrolytes.
Why Are Electrolytes Important During 75 Hard Challenge?
Electrolytes are minerals in your body fluids (including blood and sweat) that carry a charge of electricity. These electrically charged minerals are extremely important for your body, particularly when working out. They help your muscles contract, help regulate your body’s chemical reactions, and help keep your fluids well-balanced so that you stay hydrated.
The problem is that when you work out - particularly for 45 minutes twice a day (once outside in the heat and other elements) - you lose electrolytes through your sweat. If you’re only drinking spring or purified water throughout the day, you’re not replacing those electrolytes you’re losing during exercise. This can cause you to experience uncomfortable and scary symptoms like muscle weakness, twitching, and cramping; arrhythmia (irregular heart rate); nausea and vomiting; and even confusion.
It can get worse, though. If you’re really, really low on electrolytes, you could damage your vital organs.
What’s the lesson here? When performing the 75 Hard challenge, stay hydrated, but also use an electrolyte powder to make sure your body is able to stay hydrated.
What Is The Best Electrolyte Powder For 75 Hard Challenge?
The best electrolyte powder for the 75 Hard challenge may vary depending on your specific wants and needs. In your case, you may be looking to avoid anything artificial, as well as anything that is too sugary (sugar is not on most people’s 75 Hard diet).
Considering those two criteria, we recommend Electrolytes Powder Plus: Watermelon from PowderVitamin. It’s a powder that dissolves in your water. It contains no sugar, but also no harmful chemicals, maltodextrin, artificial flavors, or fillers. Just organic citric acid, organic malic acid, non-GMO watermelon natural flavor, organic stevia, organic beets, and, of course, electrolytes from an organic trace minerals complex.
Not a watermelon fan? There are plenty of other tantalizing flavors to choose from, including lemonade, raspberry lemonade, raspberry, and orange pineapple. Find them all at the PowderVitamin online store.
What’s great about this powder is not only will it help you stay hydrated during the 75 Hard challenge, but it also tastes great, contains organic ingredients, and works for a keto diet. Plus, since it’s a powder, it’s easy to transport with you wherever you go.
Now that you know everything you need to know about the 75-day Hard Challenge, you can prepare a diet, exercise, and reading plan that is suited to your unique wants and needs. Remember, you have to stick to this self-improvement program for over two months with no breaks and no cheating. Stay hydrated with electrolytes from PowderVitamin, so you can reap the full benefits that it has to offer.