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25 Push-Ups for 31 Days: Conquering the July Challenge

CHALLENGE! 25 Push-Up in 31 Days!

My wife, Lauren, recently took part in the Joyful Miles Running Club Monthly Challenge. For the month of July, we challenged our followers to attempt at least 2 miles and/or 25 push-ups each day. She documented her daily progress, and the video can be seen here. She also kept a running diary of what she was going through each day, and she shares that with all of us here.

I am going to give you a bit of a preamble before I tell you about how my #JoyfulMonthlyChallenge went. The bit about myself is that I am a mom of two boys, ages 4 and 10 months, and wife to Joyful Miles’ very own Rob Hallihan. Like a lot of women I was very active in high school and college then realized that I couldn’t eat a steak bomb sub every day while I worked my desk job and didn’t burn 5000 calories a day. For me activity was competitive horseback riding and if you know the sport it can be difficult to maintain if you don’t have the time or money. But after having my two boys (and yes that is all she wrote, I am not looking to try for a girl) my goal is to get back to being a competitive equestrian.

Running is definitely Rob’s sport in our household, but it is a surefire way for me to burn those calories that desperately need to be torched. The bit about the #JoyfulMonthlyChallenge is that each month Jackey set out a challenge for any Joyful Milers to complete. July’s was to either run 2 miles or complete 25 push-ups a day. I decided to up the ante and complete 25 push-up AND either a spin class or run 2 miles. I kept a short journal of how I did each day, check it out below. Then check out the video highlighting my most memorable days. (I started with modified push-ups then “graduated” to full push-ups on day 14)

Day 1: Spin class @WheelHouse www.whcycling.com – Ugh! I feel like the white rabbit already because I’m late, I’m late, I’m late for a very important date. Starting the July #JoyfulMonthChallenge on July 3.

Day 2: 2 miles – I am already dreading day 3. I know the 3rd day always hurts the most

Day 3: Spin class – Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!

Day 4: 2 miles – I give myself a tap on the back…I didn’t quit yet.

Day 5: Spin class – I am able to do my 25 push-ups without pausing

Day 6: I barely hit ¾ of my step goal today. I ate a pint of ice-cream (Ben & Jerry’s mint cookie if inquiring minds want to know) I cry in my husband’s arms while I tell him I suck and he tells me I don’t. (my stomach hurts from the ice-cream). Then at 10:00 PM I don’t argue with him when he says he is proud of me as I do my 25 push-ups.

Day 7: Spin class – I am a badass equestrian and I get back on that horse and crush my 25 push-ups. Life lesson- don’t let your preschooler count your push-ups… 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,6…??? OK, back to the flashcards.

Day 8: 2 miles – watching myself on video is really hard.

Day 9: Tuesdays SUCK! Most people hate Mondays. NO! Mondays are full of fresh to-do lists and optimism. Now Tuesdays…they suck. Push-ups at 10:00 PM again.

Day 10: Oh sh*t it’s Wednesday! How am I going to complete this to-do list?! Goddamn Monday’s optimism. No spin or 2 miles, but I did get my push-ups done.

Day 11: 1.72 miles. 25 push-ups. Summer head cold…whiskey tango foxtrot…

Day 12: 2 miles – Girls night out is not an excuse for skipping pushups #doitwithyourshoeson

Day 13: Hangovers are not an excuse for skipping push-ups. #plusside I got 5,000 steps in before 2:00 AM.

Day 14: Spin class – “Graduated” to big girl pushups today. #thestruggleisreal

Day 15: 2 miles – Myrtle (my 13yr old calico kitty) helped me today. I am hurting from my first day of real pushups so I did half of them modified. #practicemakesprogress

Day 16: Have I mentioned I hate Tuesdays. 10:00 PM seems to be my witching hour for sh*tty days and getting my pushups done.

Day 17: Myrtle was my cheerleader again today

Day 18: 2 miles- #getitdone

Day 19: Spin class – #couplesnight

Day 20: OUCH! I think my arms are going to spontaneously pop off my torso. Back to modified pushups today.

Day 21: Spin class – My motivation to complete my pushups today was just to get them done.

Day 22: Spin class – #changeup today. Did 25 baby presses and 25 toddler presses. Myrtle sadly did not let me do 25 kitty presses

Day 23: Sleep. I just had to sleep. Life lesson – not only is it OK, but it is necessary for most people to build in rest days. Your progress is a sliding scale and will not match anyone else. Listen to your body.

Day 24: Almost made it past 15 consecutively, but Myrtle wanted to snuggle. Took a pause then pressed out the last 10.

Day 25: 2 miles – my boys were my cheering squad today. #babyclaps <3

Day 26: 2 miles – then another 1.5 mile walk at lunch

Day 27: Spin class- Up before the sun…thank you 9 month old. Crushed my 25 pushups without stopping!

Day 28: Beach day! Be bold and have courage. My boy’s don’t care what I look like in a bathing suit, they just care if I sit in the sand to make a castle and hold them tight in the waves.

Day 28: Spin Class – Is it February 2nd?

Day 29: August 1 – Start of a new #JoyfulMonthlyChallenge but I still need to finish July’s challenge. 2 miles #done 25 pushups #done 25 situps #done

Day 30: 2 miles- Oh dear…. The struggle is real. I feel like I should have made more progress today. Maybe it is simply because I overdid it yesterday. No way to know unless I continue on.

Day 31: 2 miles – #DONE 25 consecutive full pushups!

How do I feel? Accomplished and proud. A challenge is just that, a challenge. It is a way to discover your new max effort. Thank you Jackey & Joyful Miles for setting up these monthly challenges. Thank you Jenn and the lovely ladies of WheelHouse for reminding me that you never know who you are inspiring so you better give it your all. I hope my story has inspired someone. Last, but never least, thank you Rob for being my number one fan and the best husband a girl could ask for.

If you want to join in the fun of our monthly challenges, be sure to check out the Joyful Miles Running Club on Facebook. We’d love to hear about your training and your progress.

About the author: Robert is a 35-year-old father of a 2-year-old boy, with another, yet-to-be determined baby on the way! As a total Disney nut who loves to travel, he started running to get in shape, but now he takes vacations so he can run races with the other crazy Joyful Miles ladies! He also loves useless trivia and has a vast knowledge of TV. Go ahead. Ask him anything about Seinfeld!

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