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Challenge Yourself: 1 Minute Plank

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When people think fitness goal they usually think of double digit weight loss way down the road, or big fitness events like running a 5k or a marathon.  But even if you don’t have huge amounts of weight to lose, or any desire to run for hours, you still need to have a goal to keep you motivated.  If you are searching for a challenging goal that will give you a rock hard core, aim to hold a plank for one minute without wobbling.

Here’s the game plan:

  • First, see how far you have to go.  Get on your belly, and place your elbows directly underneath your shoulders.  You can clasp your hands to give you more stability, but make sure your forearms are flat on the ground to not put pressure on your shoulder joints.  Then, raise up on your forearms and toes, keeping your body straight.  Make sure your body is a straight line from your shoulders to heels, being sure not to sag your hips or bend at the waist (see picture above.)  Keep your belly button pulled in and breath steady.  Time how long you can hold your plank.
  • Next, work your way up to a minute.  Get into plank position, and start your timer.  Hold the plank for as long as you can.  When you can’t hold it any longer, drop to your knees and stop the timer.  Rest, then raise back up and start the timer again until you reach a minute.
  • Repeat this cycle 2 times a week, trying to reduce the amount of times you drop to your knees, until you can hold the plank for a full minute straight.  Too easy?  Try your plank on your hands instead of your elbows.

In Good Health,

Kelly Turner

Kelly Turner is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and health and fitness writer from Seattle, WA.  Her writing has appeared in numerous magazines, and she currently blogs for Breathe Magazine, is the Health and Fitness Expert for and feature fitness writer for  To contact Kelly with any questions, email her at

Tags: goals, Motivation, Personal trainer, plank


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