Saturday, July 21, 2012

#PLANKADAY: 5 Tips for Holding a Longer Plank

Hey kids,

Have you heard of this new social media outlet called Twitter? I hear it is the latest rage.  I have had a Twitter account for a couple of years but I haven't starting using it on a regular basis until  recently.  Maybe I'm behind the times.  I'm pretty sure my 98 year old grandmother has a Twitter account. Maybe not.  I started having fun with Twitter when I heard about #plankaday.  I was already doing a plank every day before I learned I could brag about my plank times all over the internet. I went from struggling to hold a one minute plank to holding over seven continuous minutes. I thought I would share my plank progression over the last few months to show you how your plank times can build slowly over time.  The secret is to do it every single day.  My abs are strong and I actually have ab definition that I credit to clean eating, regular work-outs and of course, my plank a day.

March 29: 1:00
April 7th: 1:30
April 14th: 2:00
April 28th: 2:15
May 5th: 2:30
May 20th: 3:00
June 6th: 3:30
June 16th: 4:00
July 2nd: 4:30
July 3rd: 5:00
July 7th: 6:01
August 7th: 6:31
August 19th: 7:01
August 25th: 7:30
My Record as of July 21!

Candy was the best planker ever.

Top 5 tips for holding a longer plank:

1.  Do a plank Every. Single. Day. 
2.  Turn the stopwatch over so you can't see it.  Don't look at the timer until you physically are ready to drop.  I know when I am ready to drop when my thighs start shaking. 
3.  Find something to distract your brain.  I sometimes browse Facebook on my Kindle Fire or read a magazine article during the first part of my plank.  This really helps pass the first couple of minutes.  By the end when it starts to get hard, I have to stop reading and focus because my whole body is shaking.
4. Towards the end countdown backwards in your head, really slow.  I start at 60 and count down slowly to one.  This is another way to refocus your brain and it usually kills about two more minutes.
5.  Do it until it hurts, then push yourself to hold for at least 15-30 more seconds.  Sometimes I drop in a pool of my own sweat.  It is a beautiful thing.

So let's hear it, who has got me beat? What is your plank record?

August 7th 2012 - New plank record! 6:31!

This is what #fitfluential looks like!

August 19, 2012 - New Record 7:01 (I surprise myself sometimes) The timer says 7:02 because I HAD to drop before I could hit stop on the timer.  Can I get to 10?  Stay tuned to see.

August 19th 2012 record
August 25, 2012 - New Record 7:30. 

August 25th 2012 record

What is your best plank time? Running with Ollie has a plank leader board of the top 20 plank times.  Get your plank in today and submit your time to be added to the board.

Keep Running (and planking),


  1. WOW!!!! 6:01??? I'm so impressed!!!! I've been doing a #plankaday for a few weeks now. The longest for me was 2:34. This week I've been doing plank ladders...what a challenge!!! Great job on your planks!!!

  2. Roar! Mine is 1:36 but I'm working on it! You rock!

  3. I was originally shooting for a 5 minute plank since January, as that seemed impossible to me. But my son the sadist has challenged me to hit 10 minutes! I have been doing a plank a day since January and, like you, I go up and down, but now I do at least 5 minutes a day. 7 minutes is the longest thus far. I've been "plateaued" there for awhile...don't have a way of reading the internet while planking unfortunately (I have a desktop computer only) but I should get a few magazines...

    1. OMGosh 7 minutes is insane!!!! I'll get there one day too! :) I know what you mean about the plateau, I seem to be "stuck" at 6. sometimes 4 or 5 is ALL I have in me. One day at a time, we will all get there.

  4. My new plankaday inspiration! This is excellent.

  5. inspire me...I will start tracking my planks-daily (which has not happened)!

  6. Ok Lea, I am going to start #plankaday tomorrow...I suspect I will get to 1 min 30 seconds :/
    Thanks for giving me the push!
    This is why it's important to have your posts delivered to my inbox...a challenge has been you know those of us that are competitive will take this as a challenge right??? lol

    1. WOOHOO! A plank-off! I love it! Let me know how it goes!

  7. I did one today but I see you do yours on your elbows...gonna try that tomorrow :)
    todays was 2 mins 10 secs

  8. Man I stink at these, I need to to more of them for sure! Thanks for the tips :)

  9. I just did a 3:00... maybe could have done longer but didn't want to hurt my back... wow, 6:01 is impressive.

  10. I love all the people doing our #plankaday challenge! If you want to know more about it and why Dr. Pagoto & I started it check out this link:

  11. I have been doing a 3:30 to 4:30 plank as part of about 15 minutes everyday of core work. My longest plank so far is 8:30. My shoulders hurt was the only problem for not holding it longer.

    1. wow 8:30! That is great! I know what you mean about the shoulders, I had the same issues on long planks!

  12. Do you have any rules for planks... The reason I asked is that I may lift my elbow off the floor to release the tension on my shoulder 3 or 4 times during the plank. Is that considered ok or not. So I tried seeing how long I could go this morning. This included that shifting all the weight to one elbow a few times to help the each shoulder a little. So I do not know if that invalidates it or not. I went 10:30. Will send you a pic on Twitter.

  13. My longest (Nov. 12, 2012) was 2:30. I'm hoping to get to 3:00 by the end of 2012.

  14. I am a 11 year old girl and I hold a plank for 70 seconds. I am hoping to get up to 3 minutes by the end of 2013.

  15. Do you do 1 set everyday or 3 sets?

    1. I just a single plank everyday, not a set -- but I do think sets are helpful while you build up your time.

    2. Okay i was thinking of doing 3 sets.. I'm going to join my countrys army and to get in i need to pass 2 test which include 6 differents "planks" i need to hold for an amount of time and they told me to build the strenght to do them by doing dynamic exercises but when i saw this and your progress i think i am going to do the same as you.. Thanks for answering

    3. Good Luck! I am sure you will do great!

  16. This is crazy how fast you improve your time!! I did dynamic like the army said for 8 weeks 3 times a day and did improve for 10 second in the plank.. I can do 5 of them in the time i need but with my back i could do 1 minute and after 8 weeks i could do 1:10.. I did this like you did and the tips and now i can do 1:58 and just need 2 more seconds :D All this in less than 4 weeks! Thank you for creating this blog or what it is and theese tips! Really helped me out :D

  17. For all you plankers out there if you see my comments above they were before I got a mirror and looked at my technique which I found out was terrible. I had my butt too far up in the air and I was more a boomerang that a plank. A mirror helped me keep my butt down and a true plank and of course my time went down to about 5 minutes. I still do planks as part of my daily work out.

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  22. I'm a 13 year old boy, by the way.

    I didn't have P.E. for my second semester, so I haven't been necessarily in shape since the end of 1st semester. I came across this and your tips actually really helped. I plan on starting the #plankaday challenge on twitter. I just did it a few minutes ago and my first try I got 11:30, but sadly I didn't manage to "fall into a pool of sweat" like I was hoping. :( Either way, you've inspiring me and your tips actually helped a lot, as I went on for 3 times as long as I normally would have with them. (I counted down from 100 instead, and did it 3 times)

  23. Guess this post is really old :3 Just hit a new plank PB today and felt the need to tell someone hahaa I'm so bad :L But yupp 16:24 is my new personal best! :D Not sure if this is more of a psychological factor but I hold my hands together while I plank, makes it easier for me to hold on to the burn by squeezing something kinda thing.

    Anyway, awesome post! :D

    - Fin

    1. wow! That is amazing! My leaderboard is closed (mainly due to some technical difficulties when I transferred my blog, I can no longer edit that page, but I don't want to delete it either!) Congratulations! You are awesome!!!!! -- Lea


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