Taking the President’s (Exercise) Challenge: Part II


When I stumbled on The President’s Challenge website at www.presidentschallenge.org, I was excited. I was already exercising regularly, but the Challenge could help me stay motivated for the long haul.

So about a year ago, I got with the program. It was simple. I just logged on to the website, picked My Favorite physical activities from the list, and then—every time I exercised—I entered the date, activity, duration, and intensity (rate) in my online Activity Log.

Earning a Bronze medal

Sometimes I ran, usually I walked. Sometimes I walked with my BF, usually I walked alone. Sometimes it was raining, usually it was dry. And in three months, I racked up 20,000 points to earn a Bronze medallion. I was elated!

And then a Silver medal

For a Silver medallion, I needed 45,000 points (including the 20,000 points I’d already earned). But reaching that level turned out to be a Much Bigger Challenge because by then winter had come. And with it came a surprising amount of snow in a city which seldom gets any and doesn’t know how to cope when it does.

To make things worse, this year’s experimental, salt-free approach to snow management was not a success. The snowy streets became icy and slippery. The ice partially melted and then re-froze. Then more snow fell, covering the ice. Then more snow yet.

There’s a fairly steep incline to the trail where I walk, so I needed a Plan B. I added “trampoline” to My Favorites on the President’s Challenge, and some days I ran in place indoors on the mini-trampoline my BF had bought. During this time, I wasn’t racking up points as fast as I had been. But I kept at it, and—after about six months—I finally earned a Silver medallion.

Going for the Gold

Now I’m going for the Gold. It’s 80,000 points, including the 45,000 from the previous awards. I’m 68% of the way there, and I’m already thinking,

What next? I can’t stop now!

Photo by mysza

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