Weekday Weekend January Challenge

In case anyone is looking for a fun and healthy challenge to try for the new year, we invite you to join us for a four-week Weekday Weekend challenge starting January 1! As many of you know, this past fall we published our first cookbook, Weekday Weekend. It’s not only a cookbook, filled with colorful photos and recipes, it’s also a challenge to encourage you on your healthy eating journey. For me, that’s always been a struggle; I love to eat and I have a hard time following diets or fads. While Elsie and I were dreaming up what this project might be, it was really important to us that it reflect not only our love of food but our REAL way of trying to eat well to encourage lifelong health. And here’s the thing, it’s super easy! You simply follow five rules during the week (five days) and then on the weekend you can take a break and recharge for the coming week. That’s it! If you’ve never tried anything like this before, then this is the challenge for you—it’s not complicated, totally sustainable, and challenging while still being easy to finish. It’s our hope that after you take the challenge once, you add on more challenges to it later, or extend the challenge another week or two. Up to you!

Hopefully, you’ve already picked up your copy of our cookbook, as it it contains the rules and extended information from the two dietitians we worked with on the book. There is LOTS of information on what the challenge is, why we do it, and more facts on many of the ingredients throughout the book. Plus there are tons of recipes that work for both the weekdays and weekend treats. 🙂 BUT, just in case you’ve haven’t picked up your copy yet, we’d still love for you to join us for the January challenge. Here are the rules:

So again, the challenge is simple. Starting January 1, follow the five rules for five days a week and then take a break and enjoy a treat on the weekend. If you want to share your progress, what you’re eating, or pictures of your cookbook, feel free to tag us #weekdayweekend.

All month, we’ll be sharing what we’re eating on our Instagram account, mostly through stories. Hopefully, it will give you more ideas of things to try as well as serve as a kind of accountability. I promise to root for you if you cheer me on too. 🙂 I’ve definitely spent the last month enjoying all sorts of holiday foods and drinks, so I am excited to hit the reset button on my diet with you all. Should be a fun time!

If you’re looking for weekday-friendly meals outside of the cookbook (which has tons), you can check our weekday approved recipes here. We’ve also started a series with Sarah and Lindsey, our two dietitians from the cookbook, here on the blog and we’ll be sharing more from them in the coming months as well. But if you want to see those past articles, check here.

Let us know what questions you have! And don’t be scared or shy! The challenge is simple, and if you can’t start January 1, feel free to join us shortly after. Who knows, I may extend my own challenge past the first four weeks if I’m feeling it. We’ll see. 🙂 I’m just excited for a change and a challenge. xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.
  • I would like to know your reasoning behind the ‘no dairy’ rule? Because for me that would be the hardest part. Both because I love dairy and I do not see why you shouldn’t eat/drink it for most of the week. Thank you!

    • From my own personal research + experience, it is most likely because dairy commonly causes inflammation in the body! I’ve tried cutting out dairy for my diet for a little bit and definitely felt the difference. While I enjoy it, I try to limit myself — I think limiting dairy to the weekends is a great idea if it works for you : )

  • I’m excited to try this challenge! One thing I’m struggling with though is what to put in my coffee to sweeten it??? Not a fan of black coffee!

      • Definitely try almond milk creamer! You will hardly notice the difference — its so tasty : )

    • You could try agave nectar. It’s lovely in coffee and not refined. All natural xxx

    • You’ve gotta try Stevia Extract! 100% all natural planted derived sweetener that doesn’t affect your glycemic index at all.

    • Cinnamon is what I used. It only takes a short time to get use to it. Also consider buying a better brand coffee or coffee press.

  • I got your cookbook for Christmas from my husband and am so excited to start the challenge tomorrow! We already made a few recipes from the book in preparation and they are so yummy. 😊

  • I’m soooo in!!
    I’m from Spain and I just received your book this week! 🙂
    Thank you so much for doing such a great job.

  • No cream in my Monday morning coffee eh? Shooooooot.

    Maybe I will finally give this coconut milk thing a try or go Special Agent Dale Cooper styles and take it black.

    • Well, dairy produce comes from cows and eggs come from chickens. They are completely different foods. They’re both things that vegans don’t eat but eggs are not dairy.

    • Dairy is the milk of animals. Eggs are from an entirely different part of the animal – the female reproductive organs. Both have protein, but dairy has a significantly higher amount of sugar. The lactose in dairy – mostly from cows – is what causes many people to have skin irritations and weight gain, so is more commonly avoided. Grass fed dairy, however, like sheeps milk, has a lower level of lactose and is easier to digest.

  • I’m in! I was planning to start today with no sugar no gluten anyway. But why no white rice. Does that have gluten?

  • Hey, I’m wondering where y’all stand on agave syrup. I bought the cookbook and it uses coconut sugar in a few places on weekday recipes. I typically use agave in recipes calling for sugar because I can use a lot less syrup to get the same sweetness. Do you think agave is acceptable or too refined for weekday?