Advertisement

The Joy of Doing Challenging Birthday Workouts

The Joy of Doing Challenging Birthday Workouts
From Lifehacker - September 15, 2017

Last week I did 31 pull-ups, 31 air squats, 31 push-ups, and 31 reverse lunges on each leg as quickly as I could (along with a 31-mile-ish bike ride a couple days after that). The burn I felt in my arms made me seriously question my decisions in life, but I still loved every minute of it.

Ive done some sort of out-of-the-ordinary workout every year on my birthday for the last several years. Last year I did one set of 30 squats with the equivalent of my body weight on the bar. It was awful in the most awesome way. The year before that I just swam 29 laps. I immortalized this years dreadful 20 minutes in the hilarious-looking timelapse video below.

These workouts are my way of commemorating another year gone by while helping jolt me out of the cruise control Id inevitably find myself in. They remind me that its good to get physically uncomfortable when everything else feels cushy (and it can be fun...maybe).

Even though this past workout was tough, my birthday workouts have nothing on Heidi Dorows 40th birthday workout. As a philanthropist based in New York, Dorow had a crazy idea: Every hour, for 40 straight hours, shed run through tires, crawl on her hands and feet, pull weights on ropes, climb up and down ladders, and charge through the indoor, two-mile obstacle course that she had constructed inside Judson Church in New York City.

She rocked it, although she didnt get away unscathed. But it wasnt just to commemorate her birthday. Dorow, now 52, told me that she had always been fascinatedby the extreme conditions to which ultra endurance athletes subjected themselves. (Some of these ultras like Badwater Ultramarathon can be as long as 135 miles long.)

So for her this workout was similar in, well, suffering. But perhaps most of all, she wanted to make sure she still felt and looked strong as she aged. Age breeds complacency and a desire for more comfort. We use physical activity as a way to push back against the boundaries [of aging], said Dorow.

Get Going on Your Own Challenge Workout

Advertisement

Continue reading at Lifehacker »