The benefits of squats I have noticed are many. However, one of the most important reasons for doing a squat challenge was to improve my running training.
Since the beginning of this challenge, I have increased strength in my back, decreased knee pain, improved the structure of my hips, and I have less pain when walking for exercise, which will lead me back to regular running.
To my delight, I have also noticed less pain when working. Normally, I would get some pain in my left low back, sometimes after only doing one massage, and especially after a full day of appointments.
One unexpected (and most important) benefit of this challenge was I created a new habit. Toward the end I noticed how I looked forward to squatting and it even made me want to exercise more.
Day 26: 3:04 – I just got home from a 6.2 mile walk. The distance was going to fall around 6 miles, but I realized walking just a little further would make it a 10k, the distance of many races in my area. However, my time for the 10k I walked today was super slow. My time was how long it takes some people to complete a ½ marathon.
I love running, but my body is only at a
walking level. Doing a walking challenge might be perfect for next month. I would
love to improve my time and build back up to running. After sitting in the car
for the 20 min drive home, my legs were very sore, but I did my squats anyway.
At first it hurt, but once I warmed back up I felt better with each rep. It was extremely fulfilling to complete the squats even though I was hurting from the walk. Success!
Day 27: 3:03 - Yesterday was one of my best fitness days this month and today was probably one of the hardest. My lower legs hurt from yesterdays walk. The feeling is that of spasms and cramping. I started my squat reps, and although my time was decent, I think I was lacking in form. I definitely couldn’t do a full squat and a squat jump was out of the question for this 100. I completed my reps and did a lengthy stretch session to help alleviate the pain. Sometimes the benefits of squats are not as obvious when in pain, but I know I'm improving my fitness.
Day 28: 2:58 – I’m completing my squats late again, however I’m energetic and motivated. I need to change my pattern and go to bed earlier. I prefer to get up early, but my sleep pattern is getting later and later. I started making beaded jewelry and I get a little obsessed staying up until after midnight making, at the moment, bracelets.
Day 29: 3:01 – I tried 25 reps of a full squat toward the end of my 100. I wanted to push myself a little more than I have been. My knees started to feel some pain so I backed off for the last reps.
Day 30: 3:23 – Ugh! I woke up with a backache this morning. I guess it was the deeper squats I did??? Today is my last day of the squat challenge. My 100 for today felt okay, but I could still feel the backache. I realize the last few days that I have created a habit. I won’t stop doing squats, but I will not write about it everyday. I do want to keep increasing deeper squat reps and squat jump reps. Also, doing some reps of plies I never got around to adding, more daily reps, and many other types of squat exercises there are to do.
Squats are excellent for overall fitness, and some of the obvious benefits of squats include toning and tightening for your core, legs, and butt. And, as I noticed in this challenge, almost every time I completed my 100 squats, I had to go to the bathroom because squat exercises increase circulation and helps the natural movement of the colon called peristalsis, which moves fecal matter through the colon and into position to be eliminated. TMI? Sorry! A clean colon leads to better health.
Check out 100squatsaday.com for more on the benefits of