Core Challenge Update: 6 Months Later!!

Core Challenge Update: 6 Months Later!!

This week has been pretty uneventful in terms of running.  I only ran twice and spent three other days cross training on the elliptical.  Two days I did nothing.  The good news- my knee is now feeling 100%.  (Hopefully it will feel that way when I run again.) The bad news- I have been a little moody this week. 

You may have seen this on Facebook.  This totally describes me when I don’t run.

Maybe you can relate.  Last spring when I recovered from my stress fracture I was like this for about 3 months.  It was not good.  I know cross training is important- especially when you are injured but to me there is just no comparison to running.

Anyway, I thought I would take this time to give an update on the Core Challenge.  This is something I started on October 1st.  My goal was to do abs and push-ups everyday for 31 days.  I figured it would only take a few minutes everyday but any core work is better than no core work.  As it turns out, if you do something for 31 straight days it gets really hard to break the streak.  It actually takes me about 15 minutes every day and I will admit that I usually procrastinate so I don’t even do it until right before I go to bed.  Still, it has been almost 6 months now and the Core Challenge is going strong!

First, I do push-ups.  In total I do 101 but I usually break it into 3 or 4 sets.  On a good day I will do boy push-ups and then girls push-ups.  Some days I do all girl push-ups.  I know, it’s a little wimpy but 101 girl push-ups are better than nothing right?

In between sets of push-ups I work on my abs.  I do 15 leg lifts, 15 bicycle curls and 15 regular crunches.  I do this little routine 3 times.

I know there are many other core exercises I could be doing.  I know I could be spending more time on it, etc. Bottom line- it’s simple.  I’ve been able to stay consistent with it.  It’s not overwhelmingly hard and it’s something I can make myself do even if I’m tired and ready for bed.  I do this push-up and sit-up routine every. single. day.  At first I was going to make an exception for race days but I couldn’t bring myself to breaking the streak so even on marathon days I do it.  (The two hardest times have definitely been the nights of the Houston Marathon and the Little Rock Marathon.)

I guess my goal for the next 6 months will be to include more boy push-ups.  I’m also going to add in planks.  I will also try not to procrastinate as much.  It’s just hard to do them with the kids around because Ashton always tries to ride on my back or crawl under me like a tunnel during the push-ups.

My attempt to workout around the kids.  This usually does not work out so well…
The push-ups are toning my shoulders and back. 

I feel like my core is getting stronger.  I still have a long way to go (and eating smaller portions would help!) but I know I am at least moving in the right direction.  It might take me a while to get there but I am going to stay with it… My advice to someone who wants to start working on any specific part of their fitness is to start small.  Stay consistent.  Don’t set yourself up for failure and disappointment.  Set obtainable goals and follow through with them.  If I would have initially set up a 30-45 minute core workout routine how long do you think I would have kept it up?  Hmmmm. How about 1 night! I know myself. 10-15 minutes is much more realistic for me at this time in my life.  It is doable and that is why it works.

Do you have a routine you do on a regular basis?  What are your favorite core exercises?

15 thoughts on “Core Challenge Update: 6 Months Later!!

  1. Awesome! As soon as I saw this, I got on the floor and did some pushups and planks. 🙂 I try to do a bit every day but it is so sporadic that I don’t know how much good it is doing. Great reminder here that it can be simple. 😉

  2. Great idea to do a little every day… I fall into the camp of trying to do 30-40 minutes 2-3 times a week, but then it’s much easier to skip because I don’t always feel like I have that much time. Lately, I’m been trying to get to 100 on the days I do push ups as well, and I find it really helpful to have a # goal, as opposed to stopping when I feel like it. 🙂 Nice work!!

    1. This past summer I just did it on days I felt like it and as days went by I lost motivation. After about two months I was back to not working on my core at all! For some reason having to do something everyday keeps me going!

  3. My eyes popped out of my head when I read 101 push-ups. That is impressive regardless of boy or girl. Your arms still get tired! In February I started doing the monthly challenges from It includes planks, push-ups, and crunches. It has been a challenge with one day off a week.

    Good luck running this week!

  4. “hurry up knee & get better for Tia, OK?!!” 🙂

    You’re so strong & I love your dedication. One of my goals is to add more strength training & core work to my regimen. I’m not as consistent as you are but, I’ll ditto Allison & say “thanks for the reminder!!”

    When I’m at the gym I have a routine of jump squats (2-3 sets of 20), side-leg lifts, tricep extensions, shoulder press. My core needs TLC…summer is ALMOST here!! :))

    1. Thanks Pam! It’s doing a little better. Yesterday it felt great at the track- similar to my 5K. My only theory is that the faster I run the less it hurts… How weird is that?!!

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