Plank and Push-up 30 day challenge

30-Day Plank and Push-Up Challenge!

Ready to trim down your body by toning up all your major muscle groups in just a few minutes a day? Planks and pushups are two incredibly popular exercises, but often underrated. By rotating these two moves throughout the week and progressively increasing your work level, you will see and feel results in a matter of days. Use the 30-Day Plank and Push-up Challenge to measure just how much you can tone up and trim down!

Why Take the 30 Day Plank & Push-Up Challenge?

Planks and push-ups have more in common than you think. While the plank is most commonly known for it’s core strengthening perks and the push-up for upper body work, they are both pretty much full body exercises and definitely give you a pretty awesome return on your exercise investment. Perfect for these buys holiday months when we’re running short on time!

Getting Started on the 30-Day Plank Push-Up Challenge?

  1. Like the Teresa Marie Wellness on FaceBook now and join the private coaching group for daily reminders and accountability.
  2. Get access to all the trackers by joining the community here*. If you have already signed up, then at the end of every month, you automatically receive a newsletter with all the links to the trackers. If it’s MIA, check your spam, especially if you have Gmail.
  3. Read the rest of this post for the details on how the challenge works, why it’s awesome and some form and safety tips.
  4. Mark your personal calendar, because your challenge starts Tuesday, November 1st!

*When you sign up for free access to the official tracker, you will also get my entire Clean & Colorful Jumpstart Guide and regular tips and strategies to living a cleaner and more colorful lifestyle. 

Planks are awesome because:

Not only do they strengthen your rectus and transversus abdominis (your abs), they also work your:

  • Trapezius, rhomboids and erector spinae (your back)
  • Deltoids and rotator cuff (your shoulders)
  • Serratus anterior and pectorals (your chest)
  • Quadriceps (front of your legs)
  • Gluteus maximus (your booty)

Nice! And you can make them all scream in about 60 seconds of static hold. But of course, as you get stronger, it takes a bit longer as the muscles strengthen and tighten.

Push-ups are awesome because:

Not only do they strengthen your serratus anterior, pectoralis major and minor (your chest), they also work your:

  • Rectus and transversus abdominus (your abs)
  • Rhomboids and erector spinae (your back)
  • Deltoids and rotator cuff (your shoulders)
  • Triceps brachii (the jig on the back of your arm)
  • Quadriceps (front of your legs)
  • Gluteus maximus (your booty).

Awesome, right? And you can bring them all to burning pain in about 60 seconds of dynamic movement using perfect push-up form.  And like the the plank, as you get stronger, you’ll still fatigue, but it will take more push-ups to get you there. This is the easiest and quickest way to measure your strength gains.

What exactly is involved with the 30 Day Plank & Push-Up Challenge:

  • Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday: PLANK
  • Monday, Wednesday, Friday: PUSH-UPS
  • Saturday: CHALLENGER’S CHOICE (Rest, Repeat or Test)

How do you know how many do you do?

This is a progressive schedule that will gradually let you build on your current level of strength and fitness. The stronger you get, the longer you hold your plank and the more push-ups you can do.

  • When you start (benchmark): On day 1, you’ll do your plank benchmark test by simply holding your plank for as long as you can and maintain good form. On day 2, you’ll do your push-up benchmark test by simply doing as many push-ups as you can in 60 seconds with good form.
  • Throughout the challenge: Each week, you aim to add at least 30 seconds to your plank and 15 total push-ups.
  • When you finish: On day 29, you’ll retake your final plank test and on day 30, your final push-up test. This allows you to measure you’re overall growth throughout the challenge.

plank push up pin

What type of plank do you do?

You have several options. We’ll pull from the original 30 Day Plank Challenge and reference Level 1 (knee forearm plank), Level 2 (regular forearm plank), Level 3 (single leg forearm plank – alternate legs half way). Simply pick the level you feel most comfortable with and feel free to graduate yourself throughout the challenge.

Plank Regular 1-3

What type of push-up do you do?

Let’s do regular, wide arm push-ups and you choose to start on your knees or your toes. Simply pick the level you feel most comfortable with and feel free to graduate yourself throughout the challenge. If you’d like a very thorough video tutorial of push-up variations, check out Stacy’s Fitness Push-Up Tutorial (you can skip to 1:20).

benefits of push-ups

The Fine Print for the 30 Day Plank & Push-Up Challenge:

  1. Your benchmark numbers do not define you, your final numbers at the end of the challenge do. We’re  measuring progress, not starting ground. Everybody wins with this challenge.  We all come into these challenges with different levels of fitness and the only thing we have in common, is that we are all stronger when we finish!
  2. With push-ups, feel free to take breaks during your 60 second benchmark and final tests and throughout the week as you build strength. As you get stronger throughout the challenge, you’ll naturally increase the reps per set and decrease the total sets.
  3. Be sure to use proper form and alignment to maximize results and prevent injury. Be smart! Do what makes sense for your current level of fitness. You are responsible for your own health, so push yourself for improvement but not so far that you hurt yourself! Safety is key.
  4. These exercises will strengthen and tone your muscles.  You will still want to incorporate cardio vascular exercise a minimum of 30 minutes per day, 5 times per week to maximize results of this challenge and improve your health.
  5. At the beginning of the month you will record weight and basic measurements along with your benchmark test numbers. At the end of the month, you will do the same thing to measure your progress. Also be sure to sent a goal and reward.
  6. Using your tracker, check off the days as you complete the activities and record how long you hold your plank and which level and how many and which type of push-ups along with the reps per set you do so you can measure improvement over time.
  7. Saturday is Challengers Choice: Rest if you need it, Repeat your favorite or TEST your fitness by doing all three exercises for time!
  8. And as with any and all 30 Day Challenges, be sure to check with your doctor before you start any new exercise regimen.

Are you ready to see how strong you can get this month? I am! 

Teresa Marie Howes, BS, CPT, HHP
Teresa Marie is a nutrition expert, fitness enthusiast and health coach. She is backed with a BS in Nutrition, an MBA, a CPT from ACE and 16+ years of experience in the weight loss and wellness space. She is the founder and lead contributor of this site and coaches clients across the globe on how to achieve better health and more happiness by implementing the 4 Universal Diet Truths of her Clean & Colorful Concept.

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25 thoughts on “30-Day Plank and Push-Up Challenge!

  1. Just learned about this site yesterday and started the challenge today, level II plank 1 min 3 sec. Feeling great!! =D

  2. Quick question about the 30 Day pPlank and Push up Chalange. Week 3 – am I supposed to add to my match my week 2 result (benchmark +30/15)? OR week 2/3/4 is benchmark + 30/15? Thanks in advance for clarifying this for me!

    1. It’s always your benchmark + whatever the schedule says. So week one you add 15 seconds, week 2 30 and so on. Hope that helps and you’re loving the challenge!

  3. Sorry, I’m still confused about adding the 30/15, am I adding to the previous week’s time/number each week, I would think so to keep the challenge, right?

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