5,000 Squats and 50,000 words
Can you believe it’s July!?! Forget the lazy days of summer. This month I’m going to do two colossal challenges: I’m going to do 5,000 squats and I’m going to write a 50,000 word book. And I’d love for you to join me in the craziness.
As this is a fitness blog, let’s start with the fitness challenge. Here’s the schedule (posted earlier on my FB page and IG account) showing how many squats to do each day:
I’m not a doctor and don’t pretend to play one on the internet. Don’t do this or any exercise without talking to your doctor first. This challenge is for information purposes only.
What are squats?
Squats are the go-to move if you want to workout your entire lower body. If you ever sat down in a chair and then stood up, you’ve basically done a squat.
How do you do a squat?
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and toes facing forward.
- Squat down like you’re sitting in a chair until your thighs are almost parallel to the floor, making sure your knees stay behind your toes.
- Slowly return to the start position by pushing through your heels and squeezing your booty at the top.
Benefits of Squats
- Squats help you burn more calories, because they help turn fat into lean muscle mass.
- Squats are know as a “functional fitness” exercise because you use these muscles to do everyday activities, like getting up from a chair.
- Squats give your booty a lift. Take it from me: I’m a 40-something mom who won bikini competitions (most recently in May) and I do squats daily. Abs are made in the kitchen, glutes are made in the gym.
OK, Lisa, 5,000 Squats? Really?
Hey, I said it was a challenge! And it’s not 5,000 squats in one day, it’s over the course of an entire month y’all. The first day you start by doing 10 squats. The next day you do 10 more (20 squats total). It increases by 10 (more or less) each day and then at the end of the month you will realize that you did it!
When you exercise consistently, you will feel stronger. Sometimes it’s good to push yourself outside your comfort zone, just to prove to yourself that you are a badass.
The other reason why this is called the #5000SquatChallenge is to shift your way of looking at progress. Many times we do daily exercises but never reflect at the end of the month how far we have come. It takes consistent effort to climb a mountain. Can you imagine putting in all that work and then forgetting to take a moment to look at the view? We are all capable of so much, and sometimes it takes doing a silly little challenge to remind us of this fact. So go for it!
Strategies for getting through multiple of squats
- Take breaks. Let’s say your goal is to do 50 squats, but you feel winded after 10. Do 10 squats then rest for 30 seconds and do 10 more. Repeat this until you reach your goal.
- Break them down into chunks. If you don’t have a solid block of time to complete the daily challenge, that’s totally fine. The glorious thing about squats is that you can do them anywhere, they require no weights and you can spread them out over the course of the day. For example, you could do 25 squats waiting for your coffee to brew at breakfast, 25 squats at your desk in the afternoon to wake yourself up, and 25 squats during a commercial break when you watch the evening news.
- Count backwards. When you are counting up it can seem like you are climbing a mountain to reach the end point. When you count backwards you get more excited as it progresses because you are that much closer to reaching your goals.
There are dozens of variations to basic squats. If you are just starting out, stick to bodyweight only squats. By the end of the first week you will already feel some changes going on behind you. If you would like to make it more challenging, hold a dumbbell in each hand as you do them. You can also put a barbell on your shoulders and use a squat rack at the gym. All month long I will be posting pictures of different squats on my other social media accounts. (FB is: @sheslosingitnet and Instagram is @lisatraugott). Feel free to tag me in any squat pics you are doing if you’d like a shout out 🙂
And now about that 50,000 word book challenge…
I’m the type of person who loves to procrastinate, unless I’m properly motivated. This means I need a deadline. An insane one. I’m going to write my next book, “Homeschool Road Trip” this month. Each day my word count should be 1,667 and by the end of the month I will have written 50,000 words, which is the size of a short novel.
The reason I’m telling you that I’m doing this is to create added pressure to complete my task so you don’t call me out.
These principles are from the book “No Plot? No Problem!” by Chris Baty. The premise of this book writing technique is that every first draft sucks, so the key is to just finish it. You then go back at a later date and edit it so it’s publisher-worthy. This was the same technique I used to write my memoir “She’s Losing It!” which was based on blog posts that I turned into a book in one glorious month way back when.
So those are my two mega challenges. I’ll keep you posted. Do you have any questions or comments? I’d love to hear from you! Just comment below.
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Lisa Traugott is a personal trainer, Mom’s Choice Award writer, original cast member of FOX/John Cena’s “American Grit” and has a monthly fitness column on Bowflex.com. She won Ms. Costa Rica Sports Model 2017 and her transformation story was featured in Muscle & Fitness Hers, Good Day Austin, Great Day Houston and Texas Monthly. She blogs at ShesLosingIt.com and is passionate about her clients.
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