Lifestyle Health

Wednesday 13 December 2017

A realistic six-week challenge

Siobhan Byrne

Challenge yourself this new year to get in the best shape of your life. Setting a goal is the easy part but sticking to it tends to be the downfall of many.

Every year I see lots of people who have the best of intentions but who fail to stick to their goal.

A major reason for this is expectation. Setting unrealistic goals will only lead you to fall at the first hurdle. Change your habits this year and set a realistic goal that you can easily achieve.

This year I'm setting you a six-week challenge that will get your fitness levels up, get your body in great shape and keep you motivated.

I'm specifically making this challenge possible to do whether you are a member of a gym or not. That means no excuses!

Schedule the same days and time each week to complete your workout. This will help you create a regular habit of training and exercise to get you feeling fit.

Each week I will be giving you a set of three or four exercises that you can do easily at home with just a small amount of equipment.

These exercises can be done in a circuit-style -- working each exercise for 20 reps before moving on to the next one.

After a set is complete you can rest for one minute before repeating the rounds three more times.

You need to time your first workout. You can use your time as a baseline to track your progress at the end of each week. As you get fitter and stronger the total workout time will decrease. Enjoy the beginning of your new fitness regime.

This week you will be using your bodyweight only and no equipment is needed.


1. Lie face down on the floor with your palms at shoulder level, fingers pointing forward.

2. Push yourself up until your bodyweight rests only on your palms and toes. Lower yourself and repeat.


1. Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart.

2. Lower your body toward the floor, sending your hips back and bending your knees.

3. Push through your heels to return to start position, keeping your back flat throughout.



1. Start with your feet on floor and hands on the ground.

2. Make sure your back is flat with your core engaged.

3. Slowly bring one knee up to the chest then return back to start position and repeat with opposite leg, which represents one rep.


1. Start in a press-up position.

2. Jump, bringing your knees into your chest, keeping your hands on the floor.

3. From a standing position, jump up with your hands in the air and then jump back out to the start position.


  • Bodyweight only. No equipment needed this week.
  • Tip use a timer on your phone or stopwatch to keep track of your times.

Irish Independent

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