- 30 sit-ups
- 30 push-ups
- 2 minutes of stretching
- 30 swings of my Tanren Bo (from iaido)
- ride up Gordon St. hill on top gear on my bike
- run 10 minutes
- do 15 pull-ups (at a playground that I would run to)
It's obviously not super-comprehensive. But mostly I'm trying to avoid spending an hour a day or even half an hour a day on exercise. I have a lot of priorities in life, and I need to fit them all in.
The sit-ups and push-ups and stretches take 5 minutes of my morning altogether. The Tanren Bo I group in with some personal practise of iaido. The cycling I do to get to campus or work. I want to resume running and doing pull-ups. I had a nice location to do this before and I need to identify a new one. I used to do push-ups using a weird device in a previous house, but my current basement apartment doesn't have anywhere to make use of it (it fits into a door frame neatly).
One consequence of this is that life is easier. It's easier to get up and DO something. It's easier to go and have fun. It's easier to do things without tiring. I can think of doing something in the house and not be reluctant to get up and do it. And yet it's a small amount of time spent each day. It's easier to get around town, I can bike any hill in Guelph. Et cetera.
One of the nice things is how relatively simple it is to improve. Can't cycle up a hill? Just keep going as far as you can each day. Is it starting to feel easy? Up the gear and the challenge. At top gear and now making it up? Find a steeper hill, or add weight to your bike. Managing to pull yourself, bike, and 10kg extra up a hill? Maybe that's all you need to be able to do. I find the idea of exercising with a practical goal to be useful; why improve your leg strength? To be able to comfortable get anywhere around town sounds like a good reason. Maybe I don't need to be able to bike for 50 hours in a week, though.
One source of strength requirements for me are my martial arts. Can I handle my sword well? I don't need that much strength for the cuts themselves, but the easier it is to handle my sword, the easier it is to make good cuts. Do I want to be able to help friends move and help carry heavy objects safely? Do I want to have good endurance when physically exerting myself?
Some point soon I have to actually start pursuing one of my strength goals, and that's parkour. I think that will be the highlight of my physical life, the ability to move freely in almost any environment with minimal physical hindrance. But right now, I'm actually still super lazy. :)
Anyway, this topic got started because someone shared an article on doing planks instead of sit-ups for working your abdomen. I like my sit-ups though.