The new year is often a great time to reassess health and fitness goals and get motivated—for a few key reasons. 

It’s a natural time to reflect on the past year, set new goals, and make resolutions for the future. Many people view it as a fresh start and an opportunity to make positive life changes.

The new year is also often accompanied by social and cultural cues that motivate people to focus on their health and fitness. For example, you may see advertisements for gym memberships or weight loss programs, or you may receive encouragement from friends and family to get in shape. 

It’s also when many people feel energized and hopeful about the future. This positive mindset can help inspire and sustain motivation for changing your health and fitness habits.

And one of the best ways to go full steam ahead toward a healthier you? By adding in elements of accountability and financial incentivization in the form of a weight loss challenge, of course! AKA, it’s time to bet money to lose weight. 

A weight loss challenge is a fantastic way to incorporate outside support and a little good-spirited competition with friends and family to aid in weight-loss efforts. In this post, we’ll cover how to organize your own challenge easily with the help of Braid Money Pools. 

Important note: Be sure to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any weight loss or fitness program to ensure that it is safe and appropriate for all participants.

In this post, you’ll learn:

  • Tips for organizing a weight loss challenge
  • How to set up your weight loss challenge with Braid 
  • Types of weight loss challenges

Before you get started, here are some tips

Follow these helpful guidelines to start your challenge off on the right foot: 

Determine the duration of the challenge

A timeframe of two to six months allows participants to achieve significant weight loss. According to Mayo Clinic, a safe rate of weight loss is approximately 1 to 2 pounds per week. In a two-month challenge, participants can expect to safely lose 8 to 16 pounds or 24 to 48 pounds in a six-month challenge.

Decide on the way to track progress

Body fat percentage is the most reliable measure of success, as it reflects actual fat loss rather than changes in overall weight. Pounds lost can be misleading, as it may include changes in muscle mass or water weight rather than just fat. 

To obtain accurate results, consider having a professional, such as a personal trainer, take all measurements at the start and end of the challenge to minimize error.

Figure out team structures

Determine whether participants will participate in the challenge as individuals or as part of a team. An individual approach may be more suitable for smaller groups, while a team format is better suited for larger groups.

If you choose the team format, decide on the number of participants per team. Teams can be responsible for selecting their members.

Learn how to measure progress 

Establish the process for weighing and measuring participants at the start and end of the challenge. This could involve using a bathroom scale or having a personal trainer measure body fat. Remember to designate a space for these activities. 

Have these logistics in place before promoting the contest. You can get support from experts such as personal trainers and nutritionists willing to provide their services or give talks in exchange for the chance to make connections.

Be inclusive and encouraging

Creating a supportive and inclusive environment for your challenge is also essential. Encourage participants to work together, share their progress and struggles, and offer each other support and encouragement. 

Use a money pool

Pooling money for a weight loss challenge with friends is easy with Braid Money Pools. You can set up a dedicated place for your challenge, invite all participants using a simple link, and collect money seamlessly. Let’s dive deeper into the benefits of using a money pool now!

How to set up your weight loss challenge with Braid 

Braid Money Pools are the easiest way to incentivize fitness and health goals with friends and family. Setting up a central pool for the challenge’s participants means they can follow everyone’s progress and stay motivated. 

To organize a weight loss challenge using Braid Pools, you can follow these steps:

1. Start a Braid Pool

Using Braid is easy—download the app and create your pool. You can personalize your pool with custom text and images. Try a fun name, like “Mission Slimpossible” or “FitFam Challenge.” You can even do the honors of adding money to your new Braid Pool to get the challenge going. 

2. Contribute money

Now it’s time to send the Pool Link to your friendly competition. Anyone can contribute to the weight loss pool with no sign-up required—all they need is a debit card! Use the Pool Link to collect entry fees and money for prizes or events. 

3. Spend from the pool 

Every Braid Pool comes with a free debit card, so you can use the money to make purchases online or in-store. For example, you may need to purchase prizes for challenge winners, gym memberships, workout classes, and more as you go forward in your challenge.  

Start some friendly weight loss bets with Braid. Click here.

Types of weight loss challenges

Here are a few ideas on how to structure your weight loss challenge with friends, family, or coworkers with Braid: 

Winner takes all 

This challenge kicks off with each person setting a personal goal for weight loss in a specific time period.

As the weeks go on, participants are weighed. At each weigh-in, everyone pays $1 for each pound gained and $0.50 for staying the same weight.

When a participant reaches their weight loss goal, the contest is over. The participant who has reached their goal the quickest is declared the winner. 

Alternatively, the contest can be structured so that the winner is the participant who has lost the highest percentage of their body weight. Note that this challenge is best for people with similar weight loss goals.

Point system

If your group is interested in making long-term, sustainable lifestyle changes, this challenge may be a good fit. 

Instead of simply tracking weight loss, this challenge rewards participants for developing healthy habits. These habits include drinking a certain amount of water daily, keeping a food diary, exercising regularly, and other behaviors that promote well-being. 

Points can be subtracted for actions not in line to improve overall health, such as gaining weight, skipping workouts, or eating unhealthy foods. 

The participants can contribute money at the start of the contest to fund the prize, which could be a fancy dinner, a gym membership, or a spa day.

Friendly team competition

Challenges that involve support from peers and a bit of peer pressure may help participants stay on track with their goals. Participants can be divided into teams and weighed together. 

Each week, the overall weight change for each team is measured, and the percentage of weight loss is calculated. 

There are several ways to judge this type of contest, including by the average percentage of weight loss, the overall percentage of weight loss, the average weight loss per week, or the total weight loss. 

Keep in mind that participants with a larger amount of weight to lose may lose weight more quickly at the beginning of the contest. To ensure fairness, it is a good idea to have a mix of participants with different weight loss goals on each team.

Kick off healthier habits with Braid 

Be sure to keep people engaged by hosting mini-celebrations for different milestones in the challenge. Here’s to a healthier new year with Braid!