There is a workout trend that has emerged within the last 5 years, and that is the different challenges. There has been a squat challenge, the ab challenge, jump rope challenge (of course not as fun as the jump rope challenges from elementary school), and perhaps most recently the burpee challenge.
These challenges are usually 30 days and they typically focus on one exercise or the strengthening of one particular part of the body. That is great in theory but is not the solution for total body fitness.
Now, it is always a great thing for you to push yourself and take yourself to the next level, and one way to do that is through these challenges. They can give you focus in put you in a goal oriented mind-state which isn’t a bad thing. However, only doing these challenges is not going to yield the total body results you are looking for. The single area you are being challenged to develop may suffer because typically you cannot spot build muscles and or spot weight loss.
The best way to utilize these challenges is by incorporating them into your complete workout, and not doing them singularly. If for example you are going to take the 30-day burpee challenge, you could throw it into the cardio mix, or on weight lifting days do it as a warm up. Same thing for the ab challenge. Don’t just do a thousand crunches to only maybe see a 2-pack. Incorporate it into your warm up, your actual work out, and into your cool down. There are ways to make these challenges effective. You just have to incorporate them correctly.
The next time you see a 30-day challenge, before you start, make sure you can add it to your workout so you will not only be able to say you completed the challenge, but you also got the total benefit of that exercise after 30 days.