Friday, November 23, 2012


In June, my *boyfriend and I began a training programs to reach two hundred consecutive sit-ups.  After an initial test (I could do ten; he, twenty-five), we slowly increased the number of sit-ups we attempted according to a very regimented plan.  Week one, day one, I did five sets of 3, 4, 3, 3, and 5 sit-ups, resting for 60 seconds between each set.  Week one, day two, I did 5, 6, 3, 5, and 6.  By the end of the third week, I was doing sets of 17, 20, 14, 14, and 20 push ups.

I'm repeating week 6 (the final week) for the third time.  I'd previously repeated weeks 4 and 5 because I was still struggling quite a bit by the final set, taking frequent rests.  Andrew, on the other hand, has conquered the final test -- two hundred consecutive sit-ups -- many times.  It isn't easy: I sit on his feet, counting, as he pushes through pain and exhaustion to get to 200 before collapsing.

We added another training program in late August, this one to get to one hundred consecutive push ups.  You should have seen me that first day, performing the initial test: I could barely do two push ups.  Week one, day one, I did five sets of 2, 3, 2, 2, and 3 push ups, resting for 60 seconds between each set.  By the end of that first week, 3 push ups weren't a struggle for me.  I'm repeating week 4, now, as its third day requires me to do 16, 18, 13, 13, and 20 push ups, with 120 seconds of rest between sets.  It's hard!  Between sets I curl up in the fetal position on the floor, asking why I put myself through such torture!

But more than reaching a specific goal--200 sit-ups, 100 push ups, 10,000 words, 1 chapter--I'm practicing discipline.  I'm making myself do something I might rather skip or put off to another day.  I'm taking another step or two in that proverbial journey of a thousand miles.  And anyway, my triceps are looking awesome!

* Was boyfriend in June, fianc√© in August.

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