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The 75 Hard Challenge workout is going viral but experts say it can be dangerous

75 Tough fitness program
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Fitness

June 7, 2023 | 3:19pm

Relaxing workouts like Hot Girl Walks and Treadmill Struts may be all the rage among the TikTok crowd, but some are still opting for the high-impact fitness approach.

The latest cap is the 75 Hard Challenge, which has gone viral with 1.7 billion views on the social media app.

Scores are enrolled in the regimen, a 75-day program in which the participant must diet (at their discretion), complete two 45-minute workouts (one of which must be outdoors), consume no alcohol or cheat meals, take a daily progress picture, drink a liter of water and read 10 pages of a book.

If a day goes by without one of these tasks being checked off, people have to start over.

Experts warn that the plan may be too intense and can do more harm than good.


The list of rules for those attempting the 75 Hard fitness program. You lose a day and have to start over.

The 75 Hard program was created by Andy Frisella, supplement salesman and YouTuber. Frisella did not respond to The Posts request for comment.

On her site, Frisella flatly states that 75 Hard is not a fitness program, but rather a transformative mental endurance program that can change your life and put you in complete control.

Frisella says the challenge has been completed by more than 100,000 people worldwide.


Fitness TikTok has fallen in love with the 75 Hard Challenge.

Many have proudly documented their 75 day travels on social media.

TikToker @missgreeneyes15 shared a video happily showing off her big stomach before and after losing 21.2lbs in 75 days.

Sabrina Reynolds also took to TikTok, to note how much more comfortable she feels in her body after shedding 23 pounds with the program.

Instagram user @philthemachine shared progress pictures from his first and last day on the show, which he says has been pulled [him] through a nervous breakdown and totally saved [his] waist, while showing off his now chiseled chest and toned arms.


Challenge creator Frisella documented his transformation on social media.
Andy Frisella/instagram

If you think these physical changes are impressive, I can’t even begin to describe the mental changes that have taken place, she wrote in the caption.

Conversely, the apps are also filled with videos of people disappointingly announcing that they’ve failed the challenge and are starting over, or that they’re giving up.

Global Nike head coach Lauren Schramm told The Post that she is strongly against this type of program.

[It] it pushes the boundaries of safety for the majority of the population and does not promote healthy levels of movement, diet and rest, he said.

Schramm said the schedule doesn’t seem realistic to the average person. He argued that it promotes the idea that fitness, health and wellness are all-or-nothing rather than balancing acts.

I actually think there would be a lot of wasted effort if I followed this plan, the personal trainer said.


Global Nike head coach Lauren Schramm has expressed doubts about the schedule.
Lauren Schramm/Instagram

Rest is commonly considered one of the most important elements of exercise and performance.

Muscles need time to repair, and your body needs a break in order to properly absorb nutrients and restore energy supplies, according to the National Institute of Fitness and Sports. Going without it can lead to injury.

But there are no days off with 75 Hard.

Barrys Bootcamp coach Daniela Celi said the program could be feasible for the right candidate with a flexible lifestyle, as long as the intensity of the workouts is closely monitored.

However, he told The Post: It’s important to note that physical stress can also cause mental stress which can have the opposite effect of the program’s potential benefits.

Instead of worrying about keeping up with the demands of intensely regimented programs, Celi suggested integrating fitness as part of your lifestyle, starting small and building up habits for the highest success rate, reminding people that finding the right fitness program and the most successful lifestyle requires trial and error.

Along with exercise, finding the right diet and eating habits also takes some experimentation.

Tara Schmidt, Chief Registered Dietitian at the Mayo Clinic, isn’t completely against the 75 Hard program, but she does want people to listen to their bodies and make the best choices for themselves.

Sometimes a small leap forward and seeing that number on the scale move is motivating, she told The Post, adding that if short-term dieting principles aren’t realistic to stick to, it’s unlikely to produce sustainable weight loss.

When choosing a meal plan, the nutrition expert recommends any diet that incorporates a high intake of fruits and vegetables, a focus on whole grains, healthy fats, and lean proteins.

He noted that what’s more important is the composition of that diet, its effects on health, and how sustainable it is for the individual in the long run.

Going out once a day, skipping booze and cheating on meals, taking progress photos, drinking lots of water, and reading 10 pages of a book a day can all have positive benefits, experts noted, but they shouldn’t be forced activities.

I understand the desire to fully commit to something, but unfortunately slow and steady wins with your body, Schramm said.




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