Saturday, August 17, 2013

Working out: Arms and Abs

For some races out there, its simply not enough to just run. One such race is the Warrior Dash. A 3.11 mile race complete with crazy obstacles; One that I have had the opportunity to run in the last two years. Something I've learned from those two years is the importance of not just running to train but also working on arms and abs. Between now and the race (September 7th!), here are some challenges I plan on taking on: 4minute plank, 200 situps (not crunches, situps), and 100 pushups.


Now, the idea for this one is quite simple to follow, compared to the other two. First, start off with a test of how long you can currently hold a plank. The test is your starting personal record but don't push yourself so hard that you hurt yourself. For me that starting time is 1 minute (I know, you're impressed). From there, you're going to have one break day, then start in on the training with a plank every day. Starting at your test time (me = 1min), you're going to hold the plank for that time on Day 1 and 2. From there, increase the time 15sec. every other day. As you can see by my calendar below, I won't officially hit 4 minutes until after the Warrior Dash but I think at that point, it'll all be okay.

200 situps and 100 push ups:

For these two challenges, there is a large number of plans and apps that can assist you with these. Especially when it comes to working out, I have to default to those who know better than I do. Physical fitness is an area that I'm working on rather than one that I've already figured out. When it comes to situps, the first step you should take is making sure you're doing it properly so you don't hurt yourself. offers clean instructions on how to do just that, along with the plan all laid out for you. If you're more into smart phone apps that keep track of everything for you (which I am all about), then 200 situps is a great app to download plus its free. The same is true for push ups. First make sure you're doing them properly, then go ahead with the initial test. Once again, is a great place for explaining different kinds of pushups and the schedule for the challenge. As for the app, you can purchase the 100 pushups in app from the one mentioned above or, for free, you can just go back to the app store and download it. Like the plank challenge, I won't be reaching the final goal until after race day (I really did intend to start earlier in the summer but life got away with me) but at least I have somewhere to start.

Challenge yourself:

If you're looking for similar # challenges, there's always 200 squats, 150 tricep dips, and 25 pullups offered by the same group. Or, if you've mastered the 100 pushups, try doing more or in a different way. For example, making a diamond with your hands in front of you and doing a pushups that way works different muscles. I've found those to be the most difficult for me, even when I'm trying it on my knees.

Now matter where you're starting at with your initial tests, always remember that at least you're starting somewhere. That means you're farther along than everyone else not moving, or even farther than you were the day before.

Tune in later today to see my DIY shirt in action. Until then, active readers, live long and prosper!

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