Exercise: Push-ups, Pull-ups, Crunches

Working out has long been a part of my daily routine. I work out on average 45-60 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week. The ROI on this time is very high: by working out an hour a day I believe I reap at least an hour of productivity throughout the rest of the day, in addition to various long-term health benefits of a better cardiovascular system and less stress and so on. I feel strongest when I’m on the treadmill and listening to music.

Most people know about the overwhelming evidence connecting regular exercise and physical health. I’m also intrigued by studies which link exercise and mental / cognitive ability.

In any event, I’ve recently undergone a shift in my work-outs. Whereas in the past I worked with weights/machines, my current one hour workout is as follows:

  • 15 mins on the bike
  • 20 mins on the treadmill
  • 3 sets of 20 push-ups
  • 2 sets of pull-ups (as many as I can do)
  • 3 sets of 12 crunches and leg lifts

Push-ups, pull-ups, crunches, stretching, some aerobics. Simple, easy, and I feel great.

Here’s an article which calls the push-up the enduring measure of fitness. And in this interview the senior VP of Westin Hotels says they have a "running concierge" at 30 of their locations who will run with you if you want to jog outside and make sure you don’t get lost and point out sights. Great idea.

7 Responses to Exercise: Push-ups, Pull-ups, Crunches

  1. Cal says:

    I’m with you on this routine. A few months back I switched to something I call freestyle fitness. The idea, basically, is to free exercise from specific routines — I’m not trying to win a bodybuilding contest — and instead use it as a source of fitness, and energy boosting, and mind-clearing.

    Each day I basically try to exhaust myself with whatever mixture of running, and push-up variations, and sit-ups, and pull-up variations seems like it would be fun.

    Some days if I’m low energy, or busy, or traveling, it might be 15 minutes of push-ups and sit-ups in front of the TV. On a good sunny day it might be an hour outside running by the Charles and doing push-ups in the grass.

    The only rules: exercise every day, as much as seems reasonable, in the coolest places possible.

    I love it…

  2. Willy says:

    The running concierge is an awesome idea. I wonder how “good” the runners are. I guess it would be a bit immature, but it would be fun to try and “smoke ‘em.” I’m certainly not a candidate to do this, but I’m sure some people could push their concierge running partner to the brink of exhaustion.

  3. Craig Mische says:

    Ben, Have you ever tried the Perfect Push Up kit? I recently bought it after reading about it in the WSJ (you can buy it at http://www.perfectpushup.com but I found it for half price at K-Mart). I agree with the WSJ article. It is a simple idea that gives a great work-out.

    Craig

  4. I’m a big believer in mixing it up. So far this week, I’ve bicycled, walked, and worked out with weights. This mix keeps my workouts from getting stale.

  5. Thank you for the reminder of my goal to get more sleep and get back to daily work-outs. 30-60 minutes of jogging, push-ups, sit-ups, and stretching (my typical work out) really makes a difference in my day…as you mentioned.

  6. Alex says:

    You’re hella skinny and pale. It’s a joke to workout with you in the gym.

  7. David Harms says:

    Modified Push Ups -As I read your blog post, I couldn’t help but think of the Push Up Bench as the most effective way for people who struggle with push ups , to be able to do them correctly (with full range of motion). Most modified push ups make them easier but only allow one or two variations. The Push Up Bench has 11 different levels to work through on the way to a full push up.

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