60 x 20 = 1200
5 years = 60 months
We have all heard the tales of people who have daily fitness routines that seem impossible. I have laid out the plan for you to become one of those people. I am current beginning month 6 of 60. Here is how the journey has gone.
I woke up one day with the idea out of the blue. Last time I worked out with Herschel, (we really need to catch up again) he talked about his daily pushups a bit. Ya see, Herschel started as teenager and built up. He also never stops and does 1000 push ups at once. It was always broken up through out the day, 50 here, 50 there, etc. Think about if every time you looked at your phone/watch, you did 10 squats. How many squats would that add up to in a day? It would add up to be quite an incredible amount more than likely. I decided to start a 5 year plan where each month I would add 20 reps.
Here were my rules. Had to be simple, had to require very little set up, equipment, be convenient. Had to be hard enough that it felt like I did something but easy enough I didn't feel the need to warm up. A set should take about a minute and I could do it in whatever clothing I happened to have on. (Can't be a 1 minute sprint down the road) Each month I was going to add 1 set.
Month 1- I decided on a good ol fashioned set of barbell curls. I almost always have a barbell conveniently located nearby/ My right shoulder that I tore back in college and never fixed has created a few issues in that elbow and some elbow flexion exercises seem to remedy them. So month 1 was 20 curls. It was easy. Too easy. (this is where people go wrong. They want more NOW) I didn't miss a day. I often in the evening would go rock a set and feel quite accomplished. Oddly accomplished. By the end of July I had done 31x20 curls. 620. Arms were not suddenly the size of Arnold! Time to quit! It isn't working!! (The mindset of most people) What was accomplished had very little to do with my arms, it had more to do with engraining a habit. The exercise was mental, not really physical.
Month 2- Another set of curls. I never did them back to back. There was always a gap in between. I had days where I missed a workout but got my 2 sets in and once again, felt oddly accomplished and successful. I was now doing 40 reps a day every day. 40 x 31 =1240 for the month.
Month 3- Another set of curls. 60 a day. 1800 for the month. Still pretty easy to accomplish. At this point I realize I can't procrastinate until the evening as easily. If I do, it starts to feel like a chore I have to accomplish. When I get home, it's kid time. I procrastinated a few times and said "argh, I gotta get a set of curls. I haven't done those today." I would head to the garage, knock out a set and do that a few times. This was when I had to be more on top of it, try to knock out a set or two earlier in the day. I also noticed about 3 weeks in, I was already desiring to add more. It took about 3 weeks to get "systematic". It was always about 3 weeks in that I started thinking ahead to the next month.
Month 4, October 2020- I decided to add a set of slow pushups. At this point I realized I wanted a little different something and an exercise I could pair up with a set of curls easily and seamlessly. Most people do their pushups in about 24 seconds, I wanted mine to take about double that. Feels like just the right amount of challenge I was looking for. 2480 reps this month.
Month 5, November. I decided to add a barbell overhead split squat. 10 reps per side. This was the first month that didn't go well. Adjustments were needed. I realized after a couple weeks that I didn't feel this exercise met my rules very well. I didn't feel I could roll out of bed and rock a set easily. I had a few days where one of my old injured knees would bother me. Had to make a change. I ended up having a couple days where I didn't succeed. I didn't get all my sets in. At this point, I realized I needed to make sure that by mid-day I had already accomplished a couple sets. Procrastination was no longer an option. I changed the exercise to a bulgarian split squat. (rear foot elevated split squat) Had to tone it down a bit. This was successful. We also traveled and I had no barbell. I was at 100 reps a day in November, still did 100 reps but more like 60 push ups and 40 bulgarians. Didn't get 100% success but didn't derail either. When I did have a failure day, just started back the next day like nothing happened and succeeded the following day.
Month 6, December. I have added another set of pushups. I want to engrain that bulgarian split squat habit better since I had to change course a bit last month. Push ups are an easy add without feeling like a lot more was added to the plate. If I had been more successful in November, I may have gone a different route. Yesterday was 3 sets of 20 curls. 2 sets of 20 slow push ups and 1 set of 20 bulgarian split squats. That will be done EVERY day this month. I did 120 reps that wasn't my workout. This trend will continue for 5 years. I will turn 38 in a few months so in June 2024 I will stop adding things. 60 sets a day. 1200 reps a day. 36000 reps a month. 1 step at a time. Some of you will jump on this wagon (some of you have already) and ride the journey with me. I would love to hear your successes and challenges. Some of you will not. Why? Mindset. Lack of patience. Lack of understanding that things take time to be great. Like an amazing Oak tree. In 5 years, like an investment in a no brainer stock you didn't go after, you will have regretted it. Start now. 1 set. every day.
Today is Idaho 4
See ya in the woods.