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Hitting 2013 Off and Running

February 9, 2013 0 Comments

What a year it has been, and it’s only February! Nothing like full speed ahead to warmer months I say. I apologize for the recent lull in posts but as soon as the calendar turned, so did the increase in the dedicated and committed. I hope your year is off and running as well and that it is more of a carry over of momentum from last year than a reboot from last January.  Don’t become just another statistic (88% of New Year’s resolutions fail).  Take charge and do something for yourself. In my last post of 2012, 52 Goals for a Healthier You, I provided a template for you to achieve success in 2013. And at the beginning of 2012, I presented a challenge, the 100 Push-Ups a Day for a Year, to set a goal that was measurable, attainable, and realistic. Today, I wanted to share with you my experience and the momentum I generated for myself heading into 2013!

And On The 367th Day, I Rested

 By default, 2012 was a leap year so an extra day of 100 push ups was in the mix.  Besides, what’s one more day after doing 365? But I did it every day except for the one proof of my human side – I missed a day for no apparent reason on November 28th, only to quickly make up for it the very next day. It was a story filled year, doing the push ups after races and cycling events; during holidays; in various states (PA, NJ, DE, RI, MD, NC); getting out of bed soon after realizing that I hadn’t done them that day yet; indoors, outdoors, in the rain, on the sand; with clients; alone with no one to cheer me on. But the best, having my now 3 year old son reminding me to do them and then doing his best to do them with me. As the year went, I got stronger and could do more in succession with each passing month, hitting the milestone of doing 100 push ups straight October 18th. All told, 36,600 push ups banked in the arms, chest, and shoulders so that when it was January 1st, I took the day off.

More Power to the Push Up

I was not alone in my quest for daily push ups either. I had several clients and friends join me along the way at their own capacity.  In particular, a special client did her version of daily push ups at 50 a day and wins the award for the greatest diversity of locations: FL, CA, Rome, Italy, Cayman Islands, OH, PA, NJ, NY, and VA, completed in living rooms, bedrooms, conference rooms (as demonstrations), on the grass in parks, on the beach, and in hotels. But the award for most courageous and meaningful act of the push up is Sgt. Trevino of the U.S. Marine Corps who did 1 million push ups for the year while raising  more than $51,000 for the Wounded Warrior Project.

The Great French Fry Experiment

 As a sort of side project, I gave up eating French fries for the year. Mind you, I don’t eat them that often to begin with (giving up coffee would have been a real challenge) but I wanted to prove two points. Number one, French fries are everywhere and two, if you ask, they can be substituted for, although I found that to be more awkward than challenging.  I got everything from eyes popping out to “What’s wrong with our fries?” to which my response was, “I just want another option. Point is, you’ll never know until you ask and you have the power EVEYTIME to make a choice.

 A Run to the Finish

My personal momentum that began last year and is still ongoing is my personal goal to run a marathon. After running in the 10 mile Broad Street Run back in May and 13.1 miles in the Philadelphia Half Marathon back in November, I’m getting ever closer to the ultimate goal of 26.2 miles March 17th at the Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach. It’s been an arduous but rewarding journey and one that has taught me more about myself than anything I’ve ever done.  I still don’t have a great relationship with the running, but we’re managing to get along. In the end, it’s not about the time or any accolades. It’s about raising my own bar, challenging myself, and letting everyone else stress and worry about the insignificant.

Hope your 2013 is off to a strong and healthy start as well! Remember, you always have a choice.

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better.

 

Also in 2013, I’m pleased to announce the launch of my new and improved website, www.jeffreysharrison.com Check it out and let me know what you think.

About the Author:

Jeff Harrison is a fitness coach based in Pottstown, PA. He received a BS in Exercise and Sport Science from Penn State University and is an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), NSCA Certified Personal Trainer (NSCA-CPT) and ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist (ACE-AHFS). Jeff's articles have been published in peer-reviewed journals as well as consumer oriented websites and magazines.

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