@BillPhillips and the #Transformation Program—Introduction

Are you ready to begin your very own transformation journey to a healthier, happier life?

This fundamental question is at the end of the introductory chapter of Bill Philips’ book Transformation, whose subtitle is The Mindset You Need, The Body You Want, The Life you Deserve.

The answer to the question “do you want to begin your very own transformation?” is probably “yes.” But to answer the question “are you ready to begin your very own transformation” with a yes, I wanted to give some helpful tips on how to succeed with the Transformation program.

1. Background—Bill Phillips

Bill Phillips was born and raised in Colorado. He tried for a career in bodybuilding in Southern California in the mid-1980s, but returned to Colorado to study exercise physiology and sports nutrition at the University of Denver.

After a career in publishing magazines geared towards bodybuilders and in marketing meal replacement supplements (protein powder nutrition shakes), he went on in 1999 to publish the book Body for Life which sold over 3.5 million copies. The basic formula for the program is a 6 X 6 program of nutrition and exercise.

Exercise—6 days of exercise per week, 20 minutes a day, with three days consisting of cardio exercise and the other three days consisting of strength resistance training (weightlifting).

Nutrition—6 meals a day consisting of breakfast, midmeal #1, lunch, midmeal #2, dinner, and dessert. The two midmeals should ideally consist of a nutrition shake or some sort of light snack that contains protein.

The basic idea is that by eating more meals that contain smaller portions than the regular-sized meals people are accustomed to, not just the number of calories but how they are burned throughout the day will be affected. And the same goes for the exercise: by focusing on high-intensity intervals during the cardio training and even the weightlifting exercises, your calories will be burned throughout the day more effectively.

Now flash forward to June 2010. Bill Phillips creates a new version of his fitness and nutrition program with Transformation. It is the Body for Life program updated through research and backed up with the power of social media through Facebook and the online Transformation.com fitness community.

2. Background–Myself

I went on the Transformation last year and lost 5% body fat, starting from 30% and ending at 25%. But the physical transformation aside, I had a lot more energy and a lot more confidence that I could tackle ANY difficult project.

This summer I decided that I want to go through that Transformation process again and see if I can bring my body weight even closer to its ideal. So I’ve decided to start the program this 1st week in July and continue it for 18 weeks. Each week starting from next Sunday will cover a single chapter in the Transformation book.

I know the program worked before, and I know it will work again—but only if I work it!

3. Tips for Success

Here’s what you need to prepare in order to do the Transformation correctly.

First, you need to sign up for the Transformation program at Transformation.com.

This is free. This will get you access to

  • online journal where you will do the exercises after reading each chapter,
  • online blogs where you can write about project
  • online forum where you can answers to your questions about fitness or answer questions from others
  • motivational videos, etc.

Second, you need to get some sort of notebook to take with you to the gym to write down the exercises you plan on doing and to record the actual results. Another alternative is to purchase an app for your smartphone such as GymGoal that will do the same thing.

Third, you must have proper gym equipment (shoes, workout clothes) etc. for the exercise portion of your program.

That’s for the program in general. Once you have all that in place, here’s an example of my checklist for each week of the program.




1. Read Transformation chapter
2. Print out nutrition, exercise worksheets
3. Fill in online journal with Transformation Challenge exercise
4. Make meal plan for the week, go grocery shopping according to plan
5. Fill out exercise worksheets with planned exercises
6. Fill out nutrition worksheets with planned meals
7. Fill out exercise notebook (or GymGoal app) with planned exercises
8. Fill in online blog with goals for the week
9. Exercise at gym (3x cardio, 3x strength training)
10. Fill out exercise notebook (or GymGoal app) with exercise results
11. Transfer exercise results to exercise worksheets
12. Fill in nutrition worksheets with actual meals eaten
13. Fill in online blog with accomplishments for week
14. Respond to messages on Transformation.com (if any)

Now this seems like a lot of paperwork, but it’s important to track your progress so you can see if you are improving, and sometimes to see early warnings when you need to pay attention to a certain part of the program.

4. FAQs

How is the Body for Life program different than the Transformation program?

The Body for Life was originally a 12-week program; the Transformation program is an 18-week program. Body for Life contains an exercise and fitness program for the 12 weeks, Transformation adds a thematic element where you do journal work to examine 18 issues ranging from physical to psychological to spiritual that may be at the root cause for the weight gain in the first place. Plus Transformation adds a “Fitness Facebook” element of adding a support group through the vehicle of social media.

Some reviews of the Transformation.com book comment on the “vagueness” of some of those concepts in the 18-week program. How can “forgiveness” be related to weight loss?

The Transformation book is taking the core program of Body for Life and bringing it to another level by being holistic, that is showing that the body, mind, psyche, and spirit are intertwined, and what affects one may affect the others. Your weight gain may be for totally physiological results, but for most people, there are other issues involved that contributed to the weight gain or are preventing you from losing that weight. These deep-seated problems are the ones that Bill is trying to get at in his program.

What is the key to Transformation program success?
Preparation, documentation, and follow through with others in a fitness community. This could either be people you meet through Transformation.com or a real fitness group such as Meetup group or other people who go to your gym.

Next week on Sunday, I will go through chapter 1 of the Transformation program and continue for the next 17 Sundays after that until I finish the program. If anyone who reads this has any questions, please leave them in the comment section.

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