Before you dive in and start the two hundred sit-ups program, you should:
- obtain medical advice and clearance from your doctor
- take an initial sit-ups test.
The test will highlight your current fitness level and determine where to start and how to plan your sit-ups training program.
|Age||under 30 years||30 - 39 years||40 and over|
number of sit-ups performed
|excellent||over 76||over 71||over 62|
|very good||59 - 76||52 - 71||47 - 61|
|good||50 - 58||46 - 51||37 - 46|
|average||40 - 49||38 - 45||25 - 36|
|poor||0 - 39||0 - 37||0 - 24|
To perform the test, simply execute as many good-form sit-ups as you can. Don't cut corners and please don't cheat - the last thing you want to do is end up in the wrong level of the training program! The results may be humbling, but trust me, honesty is the best policy if you want to maximize your core strength gains!
Once you've performed the test, make a note (mental or otherwise) of how many, or how few, sit-ups you were able to perform. As an example, the first time I performed the test, I managed to eek out 60 consecutive sit-ups.
Before starting Week 1, I recommend taking a couple of days to familiarize yourself with the program and recover from the exertion of the initial test. You'll be required to work out three times per week - Monday, Wednesday, Friday worked well for me.
Don't forget how many sit-ups you performed in the test and if you're still keen to improve your core strength and fitness, read on to learn more about the program.
* If you're concerned about your Rank in the extreme left column; there's really no need. The scale of poor to excellent is just an indicator of current fitness, and can be used as a comparison tool between yourself, friends, family & co-workers. Oh yes, in case you're wondering, I didn't just make up the numbers in the table above - they're based on a standard army test and are gender neutral.
Most people tend to fall into the average or good category, which is a great starting point for the plan. If you're ranked poor, don't be put off by the label - you'll soon be climbing the ranks and reaching new levels of fitness. If you're ranked far beyond the range of excellent, maybe you need a tougher plan?!