Is the #plankaday challenge safe?

Surprisingly, no one has written anything explicitly about whether it is or isn’t – or at least, that I can find.

I never even thought about this question until someone who reads my blog posted a comment that it’s important to give your body a rest. She said: “I wouldn’t recommend doing planks everyday. Your body needs to recover so space it out. Recovery builds muscle!!” So first, thank you for taking the time to comment. I wouldn’t have even thought about it and I should have!  Obviously, I hadn’t even thought about this and you guys know that I’m just learning & re-learning a lot of this stuff over. So in a quest to see if it was okay, I took my research to the places I’m most confident in: Google and Twitter (because unfortunately I don’t have a 24/7 trainer who can answer my questions.)

I tweeted several times asking people if they knew whether planking a day was safe. There’s a group operating under @PlankADayNation and @PlankPolice who responded with this:

When I checked out the link, there was some good information on proper form and all that jazz, but nothing that says it’s okay to complete daily. It does outline the benefits of planking such as being an awesome core exercise (which helps with posture and can minimize lower back pain). It does suggest that quality is better than quantity, but still nothing stating whether it’s good/bad daily. And before you snap and say, “Doesn’t she get that NO pain NO gain rule?” Yes. I understand that when you work muscles, they will ache. If you want results, you must push. But I’m not worried about the pain in so much as derailing my training due to injury.

After TRX last night, I am sore. And just as NeNe Leakes is Very Rich, I am VERY SORE! So despite the fact that tonight was supposed to be speed training, I won’t be making it and I’m not even sure I could even complete my #plankaday.

So, I’m asking you – friends, athletes, experts – Is the #PlankADay challenge legitimately safe?

Day 75: 5km #run & #plankaday challenge fr @ChatelaineMag

Today was a 5km run day at a slow and steady pace. Ordinarily that wouldn’t be a big deal, I mean, I’ve been running 5k’s for a while now. However, I have never run a 5k the same day that I completed the #plankaday challenge from Chatelaine Magazine. What’s that, you may ask…

The “challenge” defined:

Complete one plank per hour for twelve hours (Learn more) And being the stubborn person that I am, I decided to really challenge myself and do at least one minute continuous plank; I’m proud to say not only did I do one minute continuous, but I actually completed several two minute continuous planks. If you are better at math than yours truly, that would be at least 12 minutes of planks; But I finished the challenge with 21 minutes of planks! I also have to tell you that my son did a few planks with me for moral support. Although he did more of a downward dog and when I was nearing the end of the challenge, he came over looking very serious and gave me a pat on the back. I laughed and then laughed some more.

Hence, the reason I feel like this explains why my run was a little tougher this evening than usual. The temperature was pretty nice around -2 or so and I had lots of fuel in my system, but lifting my legs and trying to pump my arms was a bloody nightmare! It didn’t matter how hard I tried to pump my arms, I could not get my legs to go any faster. Seriously. When I began my run, for the first kilometre or so, I was running at a pace almost two minutes off of my normal long distance pace. I finally got warmed up and got it down, but there was no negotiating with my body to go any faster this evening. I guess it’s a good thing that the run tonight was supposed to be at a slow and steady pace. The sidewalks were treacherous as well; between the slush in some areas and sheer ice in others I was elated to hear the coach come over the headphones to tell me the interval was complete.

Tomorrow is a cross training day. If I can get my act together, I plan to hit the gym early in the morning. Not sure what I’m going to do (we all know how much I hate biking). Thinking about hitting the elliptical up and maybe some weights (though I may have to wait and see how the old legs/arms are feeling after these planks!) What’s everyone else doing these days for cross training? And if I can’t make it to the gym in the morning, it will have to wait until tomorrow night because I get to see my best friend tomorrow! She has a layover here in Calgary (from Halifax) and I cannot wait to see her! It feels like Christmas Eve! YAHOO!

Tonights stats: 

  • Distance: 5.02 km
  • Time: 31:37
  • Pace: 6:18
  • Best Pace: 5:37


Anyway, friends, hope everyone is happy and healthy out there! Happy Trails 🙂