Calisthenics At Work

Because I've been keener to run and bike lately, I haven't made time for P90X. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but I have started to feel a little nostalgic for my P90X physique. I also follow Indian actor/former model/fitness ambassador Milind Soman on social media, and he is always doing some kind of calisthenics exercise. His fitness is readily apparent when you see his physique, too.

I'm in a really good place with my running and cycling right now, and I don't want to stop. It took me a good six months to get to where I am, and I don't want that to wither away as I change moods, switch gears, and go on another P90X binge. Now is not the time to get bored and start something new.

Instead, now is the time to learn from what I have done in the past and successfully incorporate it into my current training. This, after all, is the key to moving forward, rather than endlessly "beginning." P90X isn't the final word in fitness; after all, Tony Horton himself has come up with several programs since releasing P90X, and judging by his social media posts, it's unlikely that he follows any of his programs on a daily basis. Instead, he applies his knowledge to his own particular situation, and works progressively toward something based on that. This is also something that I've learned by reading Meb Keflizighi's book, 26 Marathons. After each major race, Keflizighi took a little time off to rest, and then jumped into a training again; not the same old thing, right where he left off, and certainly not something brand new. In fact, he cautions against completely revamping one's training regimen and suggests instead to stick to what works.

So, in the spirit of those examples and that advice, it's time to keep doing what's working for me in terms of running and cycling, while incorporating knowledge that I've acquired elsewhere. I've settled on what I think will be an interesting "fitness experiment."

I'm going to dedicate each weekday to a particular kind of calisthenic exercise. I started on Wednesday with "pushups day." I set a one-hour timer on my computer at work, and every time it gave me a notification, I dropped and did a set of pushups. It was great. I got a good pump and landed on something discreet and repeatable that will help me build muscle without taking too much of my time. Thursday is "wall press day," Friday is "pull-ups day" (I don't have a pull-up bar in the office, of course, but I can do pull-ups underneath a table. Ash Ravens suggested I dedicate a day to squats, so Monday is "squat day."

The only day I don't have something for is Tuesday. I don't want to have three leg days, so I'm looking for an arm or ab-based day. I suppose I could make it a plank day, but to be perfectly honest, running is such good ab exercise that it's almost unnecessary for me to do dedicated ab work, especially considering that push-ups are basically a plank combined with a chest-and-arms workout. One option is for Tuesday to be an anything-goes calisthenics day, where I mix it up and do as I feel. Wildcard day, perhaps. Arm circles day would be nice, but it's not very strenuous.

We shall see. 

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