Bodyweight Challenge: May 19

The concept is to create habits of exercise while increasing your overall fitness level.

The challenge is to do the exercises everyday (all 31) of the month of May. These require no equipment and can be done just about anywhere at anytime (that is appropriate anyway).

Remember it is a challenge, so start at your appropriate fitness level. If it’s too hard, start slower and build up to it. Likewise, if it’s too easy; add reps / sets / time. The challenge is to be consistent!

Weekly Increases:

Add 5 repetitions / :15 seconds to each exercise and add a round (the circuit).

Missed a Day?

If you happen to miss a day, life does sometimes happen after all, do a ‘make-up’ round the next day in addition to that day’s round. The goal is to get in the habit of exercising daily, so try not to make a habit of missing days!

Push-ups are a foundational exercise with many variations. When done correctly, the push-up will strengthen your entire upper body. Here are a few tips to help you do them better:

  • Tighten your core and keep your back flat throughout the push-up motion.
  • Keep your elbows above your wrists through the entire push up action. Your elbows should form a 90-degree angle at the bottom position of the push up.
  • Keep your elbows closer to your sides at roughly a 20- to 40-degree angle from your body. 
  • Keep your fingers spread apart and turn your hands slightly outward at roughly a 45-degree angle.

The Wall Sit, aka the Devil’s Chair, builds isometric strength and endurance in your quads, glutes (butt), and calves.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Stand with your back against a wall and your feet about 2′ in front of you and hip distance apart.
  • Bend your knees and slide your back down the wall until your knees are at a 90 degree angle. – Your knees should be over your ankles, adjust your feet as necessary.
  •  Hold this position. 

The straight arm plank will work your upper body as well as your core. Here’s how to do it:

  • Begin in a straight arm plank position.
  • Lift one hand off the ground to tap the opposite shoulder and return the hand to the floor.  Switch hands and repeat.
  • Keep hips and shoulders square to the ground and avoid lifting your hips to keep your torso still.

The dreaded burpee! Burpees combine the strength training and aerobic conditioning for a heart pumping, total body workout. Here’s how to do it:

  • Begin in a standing position
  • Move into a squat position with your hands on the ground in front of you (count 1)
  • Kick your feet back into a straight arm plank position (count 2)
  • Lower yourself into a push-up position (count 3)
  • Finish the push-up (count 4)
  • Quickly return your feet into squat position (count 5)
  • Stand / jump up from the squat position  (count 6)

Share your accomplishments in the comments below, or just let me know what you think of this challenge that will lead to better challenges in the months to come.

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