Day Four and Beyond…30 Day Ab & Squat Challenge


I am shocked honestly.

I got up this morning and was actually able to step out of bed without crying. I was shocked. I got around pretty good today.

It just didn’t make sense to me. I am one happy girl.

Tonight, I felt motivated to try and do ALL 40 squats at one time. YES, I know…I will probably regret it tomorrow but I don’t care. I did them! And then I was so excited, I came in to the kitchen and bragged to my family and did 10 MORE as I put silverware away…just to stinkin’ show off. I AM PROUD.

I waited until after I had that awesome sausage casserole for dinner before I did my 25 crunches and 10 sit ups.



MENTAL NOTE: Do any kind of bending action with the belly BEFORE you eat or at least an hour or more after dinner. Trust me.

Here is what I learned about myself today. In the past, I would have never put myself out there to be held accountable…I believe this to be the key really…at least for me. Also doing it with my family helps too.

I did something I don’t normally do…and that was to press on and do it anyway.

Here is my normal behavior…

  1. Get a notion to work out.
  2. Do first day.
  3. Feel like I’m going to die the next day.
  4. Decide to rest on the second day.
  5. When faced with the decision to work out again on the third day…the conversation in my head goes something like what one of my sweet peeps posted yesterday and that is…



That cracks me up…but it is the truth!

So yes I did it…Day Four y’all…and I’m so glad I did…but make no mistake…

I will NEVER like exercising…


So why did I name this blog Day Four and Beyond? I’m glad you asked…

I just can’t see doing a separate blog for each day. For those that have subscribed to my blog…I don’t want to fill your email inbox with exercise blogs every day because, frankly…I got other things I want to talk about and those are the ones I’d rather you get in your inbox!

By the way…if you haven’t already subscribed to the New Life blog…go to and subscribe today!

Instead of doing a NEW exercise blog every day…I will just keep coming back to this one and updating as the days go by.

I am pleasantly surprised and tickled pink at the response to the exercise category on New Life. Those of you who are doing this with me…I want to encourage you…PRESS ON…KEEP GOING…DON’T QUIT!

I am so proud of you all…and myself too!

Be encouraged as we do life together.

I love you sweet peeps!

Day Four done.



5 Sit ups / 10 Crunches / 20 Squats

I can’t believe it…I was able to do five full sit-ups (almost keeping my hands behind my head). I’m not totally there yet but I can tell I’m getting stronger!

Then I flipped around and did double the crunches just because I was feeling motivated! Yay!

And then I stood in front of the mirror and did my 20 Squats…TRULY (a word of advice)–do them without stopping if you can. It is when you stop that the pain hinders you. If I just do them and get them over with all in one squat session…I can do it!

I was not so sore this morning even after showing off and doing 50 squats yesterday. I’m so glad I kept pressing on…I hope you are doing the same! Let me know how you are doing!

Big hugs to you sweet peeps!

Day Five done.



15 Sit Ups / 50 Squats / 30 Crunches

I did the squats first and just simply felt so proud of myself. I came running into the living room to show my kids that I even think I’m squatting lower. Taylor tried to be sweet to me as she basically said I was doing them wrong and then she showed me how she does them. 

OK WELL…She’s 18! That’s all I’m saying! If I tried to put my butt out that far and squat down like I’m trying to sit down on something…THIS GIRL IS GONNA SIT!

So I visited lovely YouTube to search proper form for squats…just whatever ok! I think they are all 18! And frankly…I’m feeling the burn…It might not be in my butt but it is definitely burning in my legs and thighs. I feel successful and I am gonna keep on truckin’! 

I am so much stronger now…50 SQUATS Y’ALL! That is A LOT!

The sit ups are still so stinkin’ hard! I cannot for the life of me keep my hands crossed on my chest or behind my head…I’m not air-grabbin’ so much now but I’m still flailing just a little.

The crunches are just easy peasy…

I was thinking about adding something to tone up my arms but now I’m starting to think I’ve lost my mind…who thinks like this??? Certainly not me. But i was thinking, wouldn’t it be weird to just be really tone from the waist down and flabby flappy from the waist up? I will think on this another night.

I hope you are doing good and getting stronger…LET ME KNOW!

Love you sweet peeps!

Day six done.



20 Sit ups / 35 Crunches / 55 Squats

It’s gettin’ real over here y’all! I almost forgot about exercising tonight because we had a great family evening planned and I let time get away from me. Rachel fixed an excellent dinner Creamy Tomato & Spinach Pasta with grilled chicken and THEN I remember to exercise! I told you in an earlier day…you really should do these exercises BEFORE you eat for crying out loud. It’s hard to do a sit up or a crunch when your belly is full!

But I did it. We are all kind of doing our exercises randomly by ourselves. Once one of us gets started, the rest of us kick into competitive mode and start cranking out the numbers.

Can you believe I CHOSE to start with the squats??? AND I forgot how many I was supposed to do and did 65 instead…I know, right?! 

I came in the kitchen and told the kids how many I did and Taylor got a wild look in her eye and just started doing 11 more squats to get in more than I did. OH NO SHE DIDN’T! 

Not cool Taylor…Mommy is stronger now…and she ain’t having it! So I did three more…then she did four more.

I ended up at 75 total squats and I told her I have to quit…we have gone 20 over the quota and I don’t want to blow it…(actually I was starting to sweat more than I like so we had to calm it on down).

My Rachel was taking it all in and she quietly went to work on her squats and then you hear her all smug-like with her new glasses sittin’ on her pretty face…”Well, I’ve got you both beat…I did 100!”

As Bernie Mac would say…”Are you kiddin’ me America?”

So there’s Taylor cranking out 25 more…Madness!

Hey! By the way, what’s another word to use instead of cranking out? I’ve used that word a lot during this experience. It keeps coming to me but when I use it more than once in a blog…I think I’m breaking some kind of blogging rule or something.

So then I laid my full belly on the floor and did my 20 sit ups…still hard people! And still can’t keep my hands behind my head but I am going to press through BECAUSE if I can get stronger and do 75 Squats in one night at one time when I could barely do 10 just seven days ago…I am going to grow stronger in this area too!

Crunches weren’t too bad but still…really need to remember to do them BEFORE dinner.

After all that business, we watched War Room. We had not seen it yet. IT WAS EXCELLENT! If you haven’t seen it…please do and invite friends!

Love you sweet peeps!

Day seven done.



30 Sit Ups / 40 Crunches / 60 Squats

I knocked the 60 squats out pretty quick…even though, for some reason, I seemed weaker today than yesterday. Maybe it was because I did 75 yesterday.

And the crunches…I shook them up today by doing them on the big exercise ball. I put my feet and legs from the knees down on my bed and then had my body on the ball. I did the crunches that way. It was so much easier on my back that way. There are other ways you can do them too…like putting your feet on the ball and doing the crunches that way…like this…


And the sit ups…I’m not getting any better yet y’all…I’m doing them…10 at a time but they. are. hard.

My lower back has been feeling like it’s locked up…so whenever I bend over to pick up something it feels like my lower back muscles just want to lock up. I’m hoping that it’s kind of like when I was really hurt in my upper thighs…if I just press through, it will get better.

Regardless…I hate sit ups. Fact. But I am pressing on. I’m really excited that tomorrow is a rest day! 

Hope you are keeping on!

Day eight done.




What did I do today? REST

Day nine done.


DAY 10

10 Sit ups / 10 Crunches / 25 Squats

Back to work y’all…yesterday was so nice…resting…

I went ahead and did the squats…They just don’t scare me anymore…well at least today they don’t. I also did one extra…you know…to grow on.

I actually felt pretty strong doing the sit ups though I still do not keep my hands behind my head BUT I am not violently air-grabbing anymore…I am doing the sit ups very slowly and controlled so that I can really feel the burn…laughing as I typed that…It sounds like I know what I’m doing right?

Because I was already in the floor and completely forgot how many crunches I was supposed to do…I matched my number of squats.

I actually can feel soreness in my upper and lower stomach muscles so I’ve got to be doing something in there.

I was thinking about this exercise thingy today…just feeling good that it is my plan to complete this 30-day challenge. I don’t want to get to far ahead of myself but, when it comes to exercise…I never complete anything. I love it that there are so many of you doing this with me. It encourages me so much. I hope you are doing well with it. Keep me posted!

I love you sweet peeps!

Day 10 done.


DAY 11

40 Sit Ups / 50 Crunches / 65 Squats



I have to be honest…I DID do these yesterday and there was a lot of laying in the floor and whining. I could only do 10 Sit Ups at a time and I barely got them done. I may have yelled out a few times…I just don’t get the rhyme or reason for jumping this high in the numbers! It. was. hard.

Then I did the 50 Crunches…While I was in the floor I decided to youtube the correct form of a crunch…because I THINK I’m doing them right. Let’s see what Gina has to say about it–shall we?


Whatever Gina!

I think I may have a little swing going when I get past 20…for crying out loud…I’m feeling the burn…can’t that count for something???

Boy do I hope you are doing these better than me!

The sit ups shook me up pretty good so the squats were a bit wobbly…but I did them.

How’s everybody else doing?

DAY 11 done.


DAY 12

45 Sit Ups / 60 Crunches / 70 Squats

I wish that I could tell you that it felt like I was hovering above the ground and doing sit ups as well as I can sip coffee but…it ain’t happenin’ y’all!!!

I did them…I was so devastated and intimidated by the number since we did 40 yesterday…I had to sneak off to a quiet place in the basement so I could do them all without anyone hearing me snort loudly.

And then 60 Crunches…did them…almost died.

I then turned into Wonder Woman…when no one was looking…and did 70 Squats without stopping.

I’m shaking.

A very shaky Wonder Woman.

Y’all okay out there?

Day 12 done.


DAY 13

5 Sit Ups / 5 Crunches / 5 Squats

Ummmm…I simply don’t understand this day…just FIVE of each…Seriously? This feels like a trick. I did 5, 10 and 10…just because it is easy to be an overachiever today with these low numbers.

Weird right?

Easiest day yet…gonna keep on truckin’

Hugs to you sweet peeps!

Day 13 done.


DAY 14 and 15

Whoa! I let Day 14 get away from me…it was 10 Sit Ups / 10 Crunches / 10 Squats and then for Day 15 it is 20 Sit Ups / 30 Crunches / 20 Squats.

So I just combined the two days.

I’m excited to say that even though I am still not keeping my hands behind my head…I was able to do 25 Sit Ups back to back before stopping. I am now able to keep my hands in a position of nonviolence as I slowly do the sit ups…still hard but today I noticed an improvement in my strength.

I consider that a win! I hope the same is happening with you!

I’m still not sure since watching the proper form for a crunch video that I am completely lifting my entire shoulder blades off the floor to do a crunch…I decided not to be a Pharisee about it and go with the fact that this is the longest I have ever stayed with an exercise routine on a daily basis. I feel like I am working the muscles in my stomach and I don’t plan to be joining any look-how-I-do-crunches groups…so if “Gina” doesn’t like the way I do crunches…

Jimmy cracked corn and I don’t care.

Squats are the easiest part of my routine now…I NEVER thought I would ever say something like that. If you want to know how that part of my exercise routine started out just 15 short days ago…you can read Day One through Three of the 30 Day Ab & Squat Challenge on previous blog posts.

So things are going pretty good here…I hope they are for you too!

Day 14 and 15 done.


DAY 16

25 Sit Ups / 30 Crunches / 45 Squats

So we had wonderful friends over tonight for Bible study, football and BIG nachos. I thought about skipping this until late but knew that I would skip it altogether if I tore into the plate of nachos…so I excused myself and ran to my bedroom with Taylor and we knocked this day O.U.T.!

I did everything one right after the other…so when I returned to my guests…I was winded like I had just ran up 20 flights of steps…but I did it y’all! Even with company…THIS IS DOABLE. Those of you still teetering on the edge of “I really want to but maybe later” or “I should really pray about this”…just do it…look at me…I’m on DAY 16! 

I’m just stinkin’ happy about it because I never stick to anything (in the exercise category). I’m halfway done and getting stronger. I’m even considering what to do next…I know, right!!!???

Then I tore up some nachos…

Day 16 done.


DAY 17 and 18

OK well…I never exercised on Day 17 and Day 18 was rest day for those of you who were on track.

So I rested on Day 17.

Day 18 looked like this…

40 Sit Ups / 50 Crunches / 60 Squats

I could have done better but I am doing them without feeling like I’m gonna die. I think I have passed that stage…I hope.

Getting stronger with the sit ups.

Sometimes I get the girls to crack my back and, when I’m done, I will get them to take my hand to help me up off the floor. Well…let me just tell you…Taylor took my hand and I just popped right off the floor…like it was something I do on a regular basis! That made me feel pretty good. Normally, there is a lot of grunting and Taylor has to struggle a bit to help me up. Easy peasy and I feel happy!

I think it helped to dream about all that snow we are going to get! I’m so excited!

Day 17 and 18 done.




DAY 19 and 20

Can you believe that we are just 10 days away from completing this challenge? I, for one, am so super proud of me and you!

Day 19 was laughable at this point in the game… 5 Sit Ups / 5 Crunches / 5 Squats

Day 20 was really the same…10 Sit Ups / 10 Crunches / 25 Squats

Piece of cake! Let’s keep going! How are you guys doing?

Day 19 and 20 done!


DAY 21

20 Sit Ups / 15 Crunches / 35 Squats

I simply don’t like sit ups…seriously…but I think they were maybe a bit harder on me today because of the workout I did from the Blogilates post from yesterday…I did the butt and arms one.

I am definitely stronger though…I noticed I was less winded running up the steps…this is a good thing.

And…I’m not afraid to exercise anymore…another good thing…

Just starting with this one challenge and following through with it has just changed my outlook on exercise. I’m don’t plan to go freak-out on exercising but I do plan to continue doing a little something so that I don’t lose how far I’ve come. I’m 46 years old…a spring chicken!…I’m getting the bounce in my step back! I love it!

I hope that if you have decided to try this…stick with it…don’t give up…I promise you will have days that you want to quit…but you will have MORE days where you will be glad you didn’t quit…AND you will feel better too!

Hugs sweet peeps!

Day 21 done.


DAY 22 and Day 23

Progress made! I’m so excited to tell you! Remember I’ve said that I can never keep my hands behind my head when I do sit ups???? Well…on Day 22, I kept my hands cupped around my ears for 15 out of 20 sit ups! And for Day 23, I kept my hands laid on my ears for all 10 sit ups! Sounds weird I know BUT…

THAT IS PROGRESS! I didn’t think it was going to happen! WAHOO!

I’ve noticed things like when I have to squat to wipe up something on the floor…getting back up is easy…I’m like…hey! maybe I should wipe up the whole floor while I’m down here!

NAH! Just kidding! I don’t have time for all that! 🙂

I really was out of shape y’all! 

I hope you are pressing in and sticking with this! Tell me how you are doing! I’m so proud of you and me!

Day 22 and Day 23 done.


DAY 24 and Day 25

OK…well I did Day 24 when I was supposed to but I simply FORGOT to do Day 25…how can that happen right? So I did Day 24…then I rested a day…and then I did Day 25 today…

15 Sit Ups / 60 Crunches / 65 Squats

I struggled a bit today as I didn’t have dessert for three weeks and for the last two nights I enjoyed dessert to the fullest…I think it makes a difference y’all…I was feelin’ smallish and now I feel bigger-ish…

I did it though! We are almost at the end of this challenge. It’s all good.

Day 24 and Day 25 done.


DAY 26, 27, 28, 29 and Stinkin’ DAY 30

Ok…so I got sick and fell short of the LAST FOUR DAYS of this Ab & Squat Challenge…I actually believe I did day 26 and then I got sick. Then I got lazy. Makes me mad and I thought about just moving on but I HATE to not finish stuff…It’s been bugging me…so here is what I’m gonna do and what I have already started doing.

Today I did 20 Sit Ups, 20 Crunches, and 20 Squats…My body was like…WHAT THE HECK?

It has been a week of rest so my body just didn’t see it coming! 

Tomorrow I will do DAY 26…Thursday DAY 27 (REST)…Friday DAY 28…Saturday DAY 29…and Sunday DAY 30.

Pray that I survive…BUT I’M DOING THIS PEOPLE! How are y’all doing out there?

I love you!




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