Even if you don’t know anything about doing exercise, you will know about squats. People do them, people dread them, people talk about them. And when it comes to doing them, Gina Florio decided to take up a squat challenge.
She did 100 squats every day for two weeks. She did include other exercises in her daily workout routine, as she does workout regularly. However, the squat challenge was something she hadn’t done before.
“My booty and I made it through the two weeks in one piece,” she writes. And she has some insights she likes to share with those who might want to take up the challenge themselves.
Here are the four major takeaways she gathered from the challenge.
1. The exercise felt like cardio more than anything else
Of course, doing 100 repetitions of anything will feel like cardio, with all that panting, sweating, and cursing. The cardiovascular system gets a huge boost and the heart rate increases, making you feel, as Gina puts it, “badass and accomplished.”
She says that 50 squats made her feel like she had taken a brisk run around the block. At 100, she had been wiping beads of sweat from her forehead.
Putting things into perspective, she says that the squats felt much more like cardio than strength training.
2. No significant changes in the butt
Gina made a photo test to see whether the squats made any difference in the way her butt looked. The results didn’t please her, as there was no real difference in her butt or thighs.
As she says, if you want to achieve a difference, adding weights to your lower-body routine will do the trick. Air squats aren’t enough to do that.
3. It builds up endurance in the lower body
By the end of week 2, Gina says she noticed that her legs could go the extra distance in her endurance runs and her HIIT cardio sessions. All the strain her legs had undergone from the squats allowed them to be better prepared for the last reps of box jumps or the last mile from her running.
4. It doesn’t improve strength training
Gina does a regular weightlifting program and she kept doing it during her squat challenge. This involved three lower-body sessions a week which focused on glutes, hamstrings, and legs.
She did the 100 squats before the strength-training sessions to get warmed up for the heavyweights. She says that she didn’t feel any significant improvements in her lower-body movements.
“Although doing 100 squats a day certainly has its own advantages, getting stronger in the weight room is not one of them,” she writes.
And as a final piece of advice, Gina says that doing this challenge gets easier by the day. So, like with any other challenge, if you want to see real improvements and breakthroughs, incrementally making it harder for yourself as time goes on may prove to be the solution.
Source: Gina Florio @PopSugar
A professional writer with over a decade of incessant writing skills. Her topics of interest and expertise range from health, nutrition and psychology.