We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Is giving up on fitness a sign of giving up on a vigorous life? I don't know. Could be.
Last year we had a 100 push-up/day challenge which many readers found illuminating and even inspiring.
Readers know we love calisthenics as a way of bringing together your gains from other exercises into physical activities that require some strength, plenty of endurance, athleticism, and a good share of cardio fitness.
Jumping is one darn good calisthenic. Done right, jump rope is close to zero impact. Jacks are slightly more impact, but minimal. All toes. Harmless to joints.
This morning I watched a bit of a fitness class which I was glad I didn't take today. The warm-up was 5 minutes jump rope - free-style. After a 10-second rest, 20 push-ups. 10-second rest, then 3 minutes of jacks. Sheesh. Then one more time around. All ages and all genders in there including a 75 year-old lawyer I sort-of know.
That was the warm-up. I've taken that class (it's outdoors mostly) plenty of times, but I've never seen the boss push the crowd so hard in a warm-up. About 1/3 of the folks needed little breaks to complete these things.
So here's the fitness challenge:
In one month, can you get to 5 minutes of jump rope or 3 minutes of jacks? Continuous.
If you are in good condition, this is not difficult but for most of us civilians it is highly challenging. I noticed a guy the other day who did 20 minutes of jump rope, mixing up all the variations to avoid boredom, seemingly effortlessly. Wonderful. My jump rope routines are only 1 minute each. I do variations. I want to up my duration and call it calis or cardio, whatever.
How to approach that goal if it is beyond you (and me)? Do the thing 10X/day for as long as you can. Remember, calis require no rest days. Gradually reduce the number of times/day while increasing the duration of each event. Stick with singles on the rope unless you can do variations. Singles are the least stressful. Same with jumping jacks: if you can mix in star jumps, go for it.
Want to see some impressive jumping? This guy is fit.