100 Push Ups

Now that I’ve ditched 10 pounds of excess flab I’m more interested in building up some strength than weight loss. Sure, I still have another 5 pounds to go to reach my goal, but focusing on my weekly weight loss is frankly a little boring now that my pants fit again. I’m still losing weight, but more slowly than before, and I’m OK with that.

Embarrassingly enough, I cannot do a single pull up. In fact, I don’t think I have ever done a single pull up in my life. In elementary school we had to do the President’s Challenge, specifically the Physical Fitness Test, and I always opted for the “flexed arm hang” instead of an actual pull up. That combined with my unwililngness to do the one mile run meant I never got the Presidents’ Award. Oh well.

So clearly my upper body strength is a little lacking. While I’m not quite ready to head over to the park every day to practice my pull ups, I can do some push ups.

Last week I started doing the One Hundred Push Ups program. In my initial test I could do 2 consecutive push ups.  In theory over the next 6 weeks or so I will build up enough strength to do 100 consecutive push ups. The program has you doing 5 or so sets of push ups 3 times a week, slowly building up the number you do at a time. There’s a similar program for squats, but those I actually have pretty well under control.

I’m now up to being able to do 10 consecutive push ups, and that was after doing 4 sets of 3-5 push ups, so things seem to be progressing pretty quickly. This in combination with continuing the EA Sports Active 30-Day Challenge (which I have been totally slacking on – but getting exercise in other ways)  should turn me into a super buff fitness freak. Or at least make me less pitifully weak. We’ll see.


EA Sports Active

I caved to internet peer pressuer and picked up a copy of EA Sports Active. I was getting a little bored with Wii Fit, and sort of annoyed that it takes you 45 minutes to get in 30 minutes of exercise because you have to pick a new task each time… you can’t just queue up a workout.

Plus I wanted to see if it lived up to the hype.

So far Sports Active is being touted as THE MOST AMAZING EXERCISE GAME. As of this morning 100% of its reviews on Amazon were 5 star.

The game starts off like pretty much every other workout video/ad/pitch you’ve ever seen. Some guy in a fleece vest starts telling you how awesome and perfect your life will be once you follow him and stop being such a pathetic lump. There’s some upbeat ambient music to emphasise this point. It’s cheesy but inoffesive.

I started the 30 day fitness challenge because it required the least amount of thought. Over a 30 day period the game picks workouts for you each day, mixing it up and making sure you’re getting an even workout. If you don’t feel like doing that you can do any of the dozens of pre-programmed workouts or build your own. But, I’m lazy. If I wasn’t lazy I wouldn’t have bought an exercise video game, now would I?

See this girl? She is way more into it than me.
See this girl? She is way more into it than me.

After day 1 I’ll concede that it’s a strong title for the Wii exercise genre, and fills some voids Wii Fit left behind, but I’m not sure it’s my new religion. I had trouble getting some of the exercises to register – particularly the lunges. Overall things seemed a little sluggish – my avatar would follow me about 2 seconds behind. The balance board didn’t bring much to the experience, and I’ll probably leave it out next time just because it was one more thing I kept having to bring out / push out of the way.

The exercises themselves were pretty good, and things changed up pretty quickly so I didn’t have time to get bored… which was nice. I’ve had a hard time motivating myself to do 10 minutes of hula hooping now that my boyfriend isn’t around to appreciate the effort.

My biggest beef is that it felt cumbersome to switch back and forth between all the gear. Nunchuck in leg strap. Nunchuck in hand. Get on the wii balance board. No, with the nunchuck in the strap. Now stand on the resistance band. Oh but holding the nunchuck this time. Yeah.

It’s a title worth picking up if you want to add something to your exercise routine but don’t actually want to join a gym / go outside. Also it tells you how many calories you’ve (theoretically) burned, and that’s a lot like points. And you all know how I feel about points. I’ll post updates as I go through more of the workouts and get a better feel for the overall game. Program. Whatever.