Sleekgeek’s 30-Day #MoveMore Challenge (V1)

Note: This is our old “Version 1” challenge. You can find a newer and more difficult “Version 2” Move More Challenge here.

Sleekgeek is on a mission to get SA to #MoveMore.

We believe strongly that daily consistent movement is a key component of great health.

There is a saying “You don’t have to be great to get started, but you do have to get started if you want to be great.”

This perfectly illustrates our belief that you don’t need to find the “perfect plan” or wait for the “perfect time” (neither exist). You just need to start. 

That’s why we have launched this 30-Day Move More Challenge to help you get moving every single day. 

You can do this challenge anywhere (no gym required) and no equipment is required either. Just you and your body. 

To make your commitment official you must scroll all the way done to the bottom of this page and MAKE YOUR PLEDGE. 

Sleekgeek’s 30-Day #MoveMore Challenge:

Sleekgeek 30 Day Move More Challenge

How Does The #MoveMore Challenge Work?

Each day for the next 30 days, we will give you 1 movement task to complete. Just one. You need to visit this page daily to see what the task is. You can also save the image above with each daily task on your phone for example. 

We will also give you full step-by-step instructions how to perform each task so that even absolute beginners can take part [found at the bottom of the page].

Rules: You must complete all 30 tasks in 30 days:

Taken individually, the tasks are actually fairly easy – especially if you break them up throughout the day (explained in the next section).

The real challenge is sticking to the plan and completing all 30 tasks in 30 days. Put an end to Monday-morning-resolutions and then Friday-night-fallings-off-the-wagon. It’s time to commit to a full 30 days!

  • If you successfully complete the task for the day, you are then done with that task. You can then focus on completing the next task the next day.
  • However, if you fail to complete the task for the day (e.g. Day 5), then the next day (e.g. Day 6) you need to re-do the previous day’s task that you failed and also complete the current day’s task (e.g. Day 5 + Day 6).
  • If you fail to complete more than one day’s task in a row (e.g. you fail to do Day 5, Day 6, and Day 7’s tasks) we recommend that you only try to catch up two tasks at a time (starting with the earliest one missed paired with your current day’s task – better hope it’s not double burpees!) or start again from Day 1.

The tasks can be completed however you want throughout the day:

Doing 50 of just about any exercise can sound like a lot, especially if you don’t usually exercise.

However, remember that this is meant to be challenging and you also have a full 24 hours to complete that task in.

  • If your task is 50 Squats, you can do them all in one go or you can break them up into, for example, 5 sets of 10 Squats at a time.
  • If your task is 50 Burpees, you can do them all in one go or you can break them up into, for example, 10 sets of 5 Burpees at a time.
  • If your task is to walk 10,000 steps, you can go for an 8km walk or just walk enough throughout the day to rack up 10,000 steps or a total of 8km.

You can make the tasks easier or harder:

What’s challenging, healthy, and still realistic for one person can be very different for another.

This is why this challenge is just a rough template and with each task you will be given instructions on how to scale the task difficulty up or down.

  • Find the daily task a bit too difficult? We will show you exercise modifications to make the various exercises easier and more doable.
  • Want more of a challenge? We will also show you exercise modifications to make the various exercises much harder.

Get support:

Task instructions:

Below you will find instructions on how to complete each of the 7 types of movement tasks (burpees, dancing, mountain climbers, push-ups, squats, star jumps, and steps).

Click the + sign to expand the instructions for each task.

How to do Burpees

Did you know that the burpee was invented by a physiologist in New York City names Royal H. Burpee? He invented it as a simple way to assess the fitness of everyday folk (all the fitness tests around that time were strictly focused on athletes and other very fit people). If you happened to be subject to Mr. Burpee’s fitness assessment, he would test your heart rate before doing burpees, and then again afterward, using the measurements in an equation to fairly accurately measure your heart’s ability to pump blood which happens to be a good measure of overall fitness.

BurpeeImage source: Crossfit Catonsville

If you need a bit of guidance on the burpee:

  • Begin in a standing position.
  • Drop down into a squat position and place both hands on the floor in front of you.
  • Jump your feet back so that you are in a straight-arm plank position.
  • Jump your feet forwards back into the squat position.
  • Jump up straight into the air from the squat position.

If you are struggling to visualise these instructions here is an excellent video on how to do the burpee.

If you want to make the burpee easier:

  • Use a box. Instead of squatting down and placing your hands on the floor in front of you, rather place them on a low surface such as a box, a sturdy chair or the edge of your bed.
  • Do it slowly. Instead of jumping your feet back and forth you can move one foot at a time.
  • Don’t jump. Instead of jumping straight into the air from the squat position, simply stand up.

Women’s Health have a video that demonstrates this easier version.

If you want to make the burpee harder:

  • Add a push-up. Add in a push-up in the bottom position.
  • Jump high. Explode up from your squat as high as you can.

How to do Dancing

Can’t dance? Write your name in the air with your bum. BOOM, next problem!

In all seriousness, it really doesn’t matter whether you can dance of not. 

Dancing can burn a decent amount of calories, but more importantly, it get you to loosen up and move more in ways that you don’t typically move on day-to-day basis.

This task is all about having fun and enjoying yourself.

DancingImage source: Fanpop

We asked the Sleekgeek community “If you had to choose 1 song to get up and dance to RIGHT NOW, what would it be?”. You can find all of their responses here. Otherwise, here are a few suggestions below:

Bonus points if you film yourself to show us!

How to do Mountain Climbers

Get ready for a great ab workout!

 

Mountain climberImage source: New Health Guide

If you need a bit of guidance on the mountain climber:

  • Begin in the push-up / high plank position (see section of push-ups below). Place your hands firmly on the ground, directly under shoulders. Ground your toes into the floor to stabilize your lower half. Brace your core (tighten your abs as if preparing to take a punch), engage glutes and hamstrings, and flatten your back so your entire body is neutral and straight.
  • Bring one leg up until your knee is as close to your chest as possible.
  • Let your foot briefly touch the ground and then extend your leg back into the starting position.
  • Now do the same with the other leg, alternating back and forth.

Fitness Blender has a video demonstrating this exercise.

If you want to make the mountain climber easier:

  • Use a box. Instead of starting off in a plank / push-up position on the floor, put your hands on an elevated surface like a box, a chair, or your bed.
  • Do it slowly. Take your time to perform the exercise at the speed you feel most comfortable.

If you want to make the mountain climber harder:

  • Do it faster. Increase how quickly you swap legs.
  • Don’t return to starting position. Instead of putting one leg forwards, pausing, returning to start position, and then repeating with the other leg – put one foot forwards, pause briefly, and then bring your second leg up while lowering your first leg at the same time.

Fitness Blender has a video demonstrating this more difficult variation.

How to do Push-Ups

The push-up is a really vital movement in strengthening upper-body muscles such as those in your chest, shoulders, triceps, abdominals  and several other smaller supporting muscles. It also plays a key role in developing core strength and for strengthening the bones, ligaments, and insertions of the tendons throughout the upper body.

It’s a truly functional movement that makes real-life activities easier and also improves your efficiency, mobility, and balance when moving around in general.

Push-upsImage source: Casanova.uy

If you need a bit of guidance on the push-up:

  • Get into a high plank position. Place your hands firmly on the ground, directly under shoulders. Ground your toes into the floor to stabilize your lower half. Brace your core (tighten your abs as if preparing to take a punch), engage glutes and hamstrings, and flatten your back so your entire body is neutral and straight.
  • Lower your body. Begin to lower your body—keeping your back flat and eyes focused about three feet in front of you to keep a neutral neck—until your chest grazes the floor. Don’t let your butt dip or stick out at any point during the move; your body should remain in a straight line from head to toe. Draw shoulder blades back and down, keeping elbows tucked close to your body (don’t “T” your arms).
  • Push back up. Keeping your core engaged, exhale as you push back to the starting position. Pro tip: Imagine you are screwing your hands into the ground as you push back up. That’s one! Repeat for 10 to 20 reps or as many as can be performed with good form.

Source: Greatist – How to do the perfect push-up 

If you want to make the push-up easier:

  • Off the wall push-ups. This is the easiest push-up variation where you perform a standing push-up against a wall. Simply stand straight up with your arms straight out in front of you, hands touching the wall. Then bend at the elbows as you lean in towards the wall before pushing back up straight again. You can slowly move further and further away from the wall to increase the angle at which you need to lean and make the exercise harder.
  • Off the table push-up. If the wall push-up is too easy, do the same thing except this time you lean against a sturdy table which is much lower and closer to being horizontal than the wall.
  • On your knees push-up. This is performed almost identically to the regular push-up except you will have your knees rested on the ground. It is very important to engage your core and squeeze your buttocks to maintain a straight back.

Mark Sisson has a great push-up technique and progression video for absolute beginners. 

If you want to make the push-up harder:

  • Bench press. If you have access to a gym with dumbbells and barbells you can do a regular bench press.
  • Single-leg push-up. Raise one leg off the ground while you perform a regular push-up. Alternate which legs are raised every 5-10 reps.
  • Slow negative push-up. Perform a regular push-up but take 3-5 seconds lowering yourself down towards the ground each time before exploding upwards.
  • Decline push-up. Place your feet up on a box, your bed, a chair, a low table, and so on to perform a decline push-up.
  • Clapping push-up. Perform a regular push-up but explode of the ground as fast as possible, doing a quick clap while in the air before landing back on the ground and lowering yourself down again.
  • One-arm push-up. Perform a regular push-up but with 1 arm tucked behind your back. It helps to widen your feet stance quite a bit here and you can also progress towards a one-arm push-up by placing one hand on the ground and one hand on a low box or the bottom step at the bottom of some stairs. Try keep as much weight off the elevated hand as possible.

How to do Squats

The squat is a compound, full-body exercise that is vital in strengthening the muscles of the thighs, hips, buttocks, quadriceps, and hamstrings. It also plays a key role in developing core strength and  for strengthening the bones, ligaments, and insertion of the tendons throughout the lower body.

It’s a truly functional movement that makes real-life activities easier and also improves your efficiency, mobility, and balance when moving around in general.

SquatsImage source: Shutterstock

If you need a bit of guidance on the bodyweight squat:

  • Stand with feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart, hips stacked over knees, and knees over ankles.
  • Roll the shoulders back and down away from the ears. Note: Allowing the back to round (like a turtle’s shell) will cause unnecessary stress on the lower back. It’s important to maintain a neutral spine throughout the movement.
  • Extend arms out straight so they are parallel with the ground, palms facing down (like your hands are on someone’s shoulders at a 7th grade dance). Or, if it’s more comfortable, pull elbows close to the body, palms facing each other and thumbs pointing up.
  • Initiate the movement by inhaling and unlocking the hips, slightly bringing them back. Keep sending hips backward as the knees begin to bend.
  • While the butt starts to stick out, make sure the chest and shoulders stay upright, and the back stays straight. Keep the head facing forward with eyes straight ahead for a neutral spine.
  • The best squats are the deepest ones your mobility allows. Optimal squat depth would be your hips sinking below the knees (again, if you have the flexibility to do so comfortably). Pro tip:Squatting onto a box until the butt gently taps it will be a reminder to squat low.
  • Engage core and, with bodyweight in the heels, explode back up to standing, driving through heels. Imagine the feet are spreading the floor (left foot to the left, right foot to the right) without actually moving the feet.

Source: Greatist – How to do the perfect squat

If you want to make the squat easier:

  • Try doing a box squat where you sit back and down onto your bed or a sturdy chair and then use only your legs to stand back upright again. Try to sit down for as short a time as possible – even better don’t rest your complete body weight on the “box” – rather just sit down until you are touching lightly and then stand back upright again.

Mark Sisson has a great squat technique and progression video for absolute beginners.

If you want to make the squat harder:

  • Goblet squat (hold a dumbbell, kettlebell, or medicine ball) at the center of your chest and squat down.
  • Barbell back squat.

Stronglifts has some great advice and technique videos on the more advanced and heavier squats.

How to do Star Jumps

Star jumps are a fairly common and well-known exercise, but can also be known by other names such as jumping jacks or side-straddle hops.

Star jumpsImage source: Pop Workouts

If you need a bit of guidance on the star jump:

  • Begin in a standing position, with feet together and your hands by your side.
  • Jump gently.
  • While in the air, bring your legs outwards into a shoulder-width or wider position.
  • While in the air, at the same time swing your arms outwards and upwards to over your head.
  • Now reverse this movement but jumping gently and returning your legs and arms to the beginning position.

Fitness Blender has a video demonstrating this exercise.

If you want to make the star jump easier:

  • Slow down. The easiest way to make star jumps easier is to just do them slowly.
  • Step out 1 foot at a time. If you cannot jump, try stepping out one foot at a time as fast as you can while raising your arms.

Women’s Health have a video that demonstrates this easier version.

If you want to make the star jump harder:

  • Speed it up. The easiest way to make star jumps harder is to just do them more quickly.
  • Add a wide squat. When you jump your legs out, land in a wide squat position.
  • Add in a narrow squat. When you jump your legs back in again, land in a narrow squat position.

How to do Steps

Moving more throughout the day is one of the easiest and most reliable ways of losing weight and dramatically improving your health.

Don’t believe us? Sedentary behaviour and physical inactivity is one of the top factors (along with smoking, high alcohol consumption, and obesity) that strongly reduces life expectancy and health-related quality of life.

Just sitting for more than 6 hours a day already statistically increases your risk for heart disease by more than 50%. You are also decreasing your span of quality life by roughly 7 years, and of course your risk for various types of cancers, among other things, has sky -rocketed.

Even if you go to the gym for 1 hour a day X 7 days a week… If you sit on your bum behind a computer, in the car, at a table, on the couch, or in your bed for the remaining 23 hours of your day then you are STILL sedentary.

Unsurprisingly, something as simple as examining the number of steps that people take throughout the day using a pedometer or activity tracker like the Jawbone can provide a clear distinction between sedentary behaviour, active behaviour, and the associated risks or benefits of each.

But do not worry, you do not need a fancy device to complete today’s task. We have a list of options and everyone can use at least one of the strategies to track their steps.

According to Mark Sisson, author of the Primal Blueprint, some of the reasons you should be walking more include:

  • It helps reduce body fat.
  • It improves glycemic control (better blood glucose control and more stable insulin levels after eating sugary or carbohydrate-rich meals).
  • It improves triglyceride levels and lowers blood pressure.
  • It’s good for your brain, (cognition, memory, academic performance, creativity, and logic tests.
  • It reduces stress.
  • It boosts immune function.
  • It prevents falls in the elderly.
  • It gives you a chance to think.
  • It can be a kind of meditation.
  • It keeps your buttocks engaged with the world, because excessive sitting causes glute inactivation and atrophy which brings about back pain, instability, and reduces strength.
  • It’s well tolerated by people with arthritis and many other health conditions who might not otherwise be able to exercise. Remember a little bit of something is still better than nothing.

So how about we bump sitting less and moving more a little higher up our priority lists?

How to track your steps:

  • Use a pedometer or fitness tracking device (e.g. Jawbone, Withings, Fitbit, Nike, Garmin, Polar, etc).
  • Many smartphones have a built-in pedometer, and you can use Jawbone’s UP app for iOS and Android to link your phone to their software without needing a dedicated fitness tracking device.

What if you don’t have a pedometer / fitness tracker / compatible smartphone?

Ideally, your walking should be spread out throughout the day, but you can go for a few purposeful 10/20/30 minute walks if you need to too.

The average person walking at a brisk and determined pace can expect to talk these number of steps if they walk the corresponding distance and/or walk for the following length of time:

Steps Distance Walked Time Spent Walking
 1,000  0.8km 10 minutes
2,000  1.6km 20 minutes
 3,000  2.4km 30 minutes
 4,000  3.2km 40 minutes
 5,000  4km 50 minutes
 6,000  4.8km 1 hour
 7,000  5.6km 1 hour 10 minutes
 8,000  6.4km  1 hour 20 minutes
 9,000  7.2km  1 hour 30 minutes
 10,000  8km  1 hour 40 minutes

Weekly calendar printables:

Sleekgeek-30-Day-Move-More-Challenge-Week-1

Week 1

Sleekgeek-30-Day-Move-More-Challenge-Week-2

Week 2

Sleekgeek-30-Day-Move-More-Challenge-Week-3

Week 3

Sleekgeek-30-Day-Move-More-Challenge-Week-4

Week 4

Sleekgeek-30-Day-Move-More-Challenge-Week-5

Week 5

Done!

Try Version 2 Next

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