Here's my long two cents on X Day Supplement Challenges:
Although I've sponsored and supported several challenges, it's only through experience that I have seen the common denominator that links success: change. It's the change in the challenger's lifestyle. Not a certain fat-burner pill, not a fish oil, not a multivitamin, not a detox, and definitely not a replacement shake (more to come on that later). It's the person and their will power to go through the challenge. I don't care if it's a GNC Challenge, AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge, the Visalus 90 Day and Truestar 90 Day Challenges (both of which I've sponsored), or some other one - the people who get results are the people who change their lifestyles DURING the challenge.
They key is to notice how these people do after the challenge. Do they go back to living how they were? A relapse. Or do they continue to live a bit healthier by watching what they eat and sticking to a consistent exercise routine? A lifestyle change.
You can't tell me that by doing a challenge that you've stuck to the same lifestyle you were in pre-challenge and still managed to see great results. No. You stopped drinking so much alcohol. You get on a fitness routine. And instead of eating fast food for breakfast or lunch, you replace it with a meal replacement shake. It's what YOU do, or NOT do, that makes the results come to fruition.
Meal replacement shakes can be GREAT. They are awesome and full of endless flavors. You can make them in just about any flavor and pack them full of nutritious whole foods. You can adjust to macronutrients (protein, carbs, and fats) according to your goals; plus, they are all easily digested because it's in liquid form. BUT they also replace a meal that you would have normally grabbed that fast food meal like Subway (yes, even Subway is bad too) or heated up some processed garbage at home. This is a good thing, but people are giving too much credit to this replacement shake and not enough to their change in diet. Give credit to yourself! You can literally cut out over 1,000 calories by having one of these during a meal. Eating a 1,000 less calories PER DAY sounds like it good lead to some pretty stellar results to me, especially over a period of time...say 24 to 90 days? You don't need a challenge to do that.
SUPPLEMENT challenges are great to help people get on track and to get motivated, but they are not the end result. The real challenge is to be consistent with your healthy lifestyle each every day. Not just for a certain period of time.
Every day doesn't have to be a battle once you get in the habit of winning.
Learning how to exercise, getting educated on healthy eating, and balancing out everyday stress are crucial to better living. In a sense, that's what a personal trainer is for. So while I don't entirely support these type of challenges anymore, I still believe that change is your answer. If you would like a challenge to help get you there then by all means do so, but don't fall back into your same patterns once the challenge is over. Use it to move forward and take the next step.