Monthly Challenge – February the dreaded PLANK

I have created a Facebook group as a spin-off to my Fit Fab Forty Facebook page. The aim of the group is for members to inspire and motivate each other and to keep their fitness momentum going. Within the group I have decided to do monthly challenges, members can decide if they want to participate or not. Now monthly challenges are nothing new to blogs and I am not going to take “the cred” for designing each challenge. The world-wide-web is full of fitness challenges that someone (probably way more knowledgeable than me) has created so if I know who the creator was I will absolutely give them credit and link to their page.

The month of February was a Plank challenge that went something like this:

Day 1 – 20 seconds
Day 2 – 20 seconds
Day 3 – 30 seconds
Day 4 – 30 seconds
Day 5 – 40 seconds
Day 6 – REST
Day 7 – 45 seconds
Day 8 – 45 seconds
Day 9 – 60 seconds
Day 10 – 60 seconds
Day 11 – 60 seconds
Day 12 – 90 seconds
Day 13 – REST
Day 14 – 90 seconds
Day 15 – 90 seconds
Day 16 – 120 seconds
Day 17 – 120 seconds
Day 18 – 150 seconds
Day 19 – REST
Day 20 – 150 seconds
Day 21 – 150 seconds
Day 22 – 180 seconds
Day 23 – 180 seconds
Day 24 – 210 seconds
Day 25 – 210 seconds
Day 26 – REST
Day 27 – 240 seconds


At the beginning of the month I was sceptical as to whether I would be able to complete it. I will admit I didn’t follow it exactly, I always planked at the end of a workout, so as long as I worked out that day I got my planking done. So at the beginning of the month my planking record was 30 seconds on my toes, throughout the month I was planking during a gym class and apparently my form on my toes was not good so I was advised to drop to my knees and get my form better. So this is what I did. As disappointed as I was to be a “pussy” planking on my knees it is better to have good form and not do yourself an injury. If I was unable to go the distance on any given day I would do sets of planks and not finish until my total planking time was at least what the daily time limit was. So yesterday I completed it (better late than never) and my final set of planks were still on my knees – 81 sec, 53 sec, 65 sec = 199 seconds. So from where I was at the beginning of the month I would say massive improvements.


Here are some of the comments from the Group about the Plank Challenge:

“I’m thinking of doing it again next month. I like what it is doing to the body.” Kelly

“I was yelling at the stop watch tonight lol” Nicole


So this month (March) is a push-up Challenge if you would like to join the group contact me on my Facebook page and I will add you.

Challenge courtesy of

Challenge courtesy of

Definition of the different push-ups in the challenge:

Almost-There Push Up – Arms directly under shoulders, straight line from head to behind, core engaged and pulled in, utilizing knees

Push Up – The Classic Push Up – Arms directly under shoulders, straight line from head to behind to feet, core engaged and pulled in

Incline Push Up – Hands on elevated platform, arms directly under shoulders, straight line from head to behind to feet, core engaged and pulled in

Decline Push Up – Arms directly under shoulders, straight line from head to behind to feet, core engaged and pulled in, feet on elevated platform

The Push-up Challenge was brought to you by so go on over and check out all the other awesome challenges and info they have on their site.

I am going to continue the planking and add the push-up challenge to my repertoire.

Go hard on those Push-Ups and I would love to hear via comments if  you are playing along.


The Week That Was # 2

So this week feels like I have gone backwards with my exercise. For some reason Monday morning I could not drag myself anywhere to do any form of exercise and Monday night was no better, I was however focused on food and preferred to stay in and cook a delicious (but healthy) dinner.

Tuesday I went to my first mums and bubs/kids outdoor class, it was down on the beach and Miss 2.75 did not want to stay with the carer but instead chose to hang off mummy for the first half hour. So whilst everyone else was running up and down the beach I was doing short sprints so I could stay near where she was and she was running behind me. Then I was doing squats holding her, it was not fun as she would not let me go 2 steps away from her without having a tantrum. I was determined to do as much as I could. So for the last 15 minutes of the class she eventually went off to build sandcastles with the carer and other kids and I managed to get away for the final run down the beach. Dare I say running on sand was HARD but satisfying and doing sit-ups, planks etc on sand I ended up looking like a schnitzel. The reward afterwards was a delicious Chai latte for me and baby milkshake for Miss 2.75.

Wednesday morning I woke up not feeling 100% but managed to get in a 14k bike ride before work.

Wednesday night I was still not feeling great but dragged myself to my PT for a bit of a row and some weights. He did take it easy on me compared to my training buddies. And this is where my exercise finished.

Thursday I woke up terribly stuffed up in the head, really sore throat like swallowing razor blades, blowing my nose constantly feeling pretty ordinary all round. I self-medicated and started taking an anti-biotic that the doc had prescribed a while back. The sore throat has gotten better but the runny nose is still annoying. Today I am feeling a little bit better and I am hoping that I will miraculously wake up in the morning, jumping out of my skin and feeling the desire to go for a run.

I have had a major improvement in my eating, sticking to an average of 1500-1600 calories per day for the entire week except today, I do allow myself a day off or preferably a meal as I can go overboard in a whole day. We went to Yum Cha today for Fathers Day lunch.

Next week’s goal, keep up the food tracking and increase the exercise.