Couldn’t finish Day 1

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    Some helpful background information. I’m a 22 year old male, 5’9″ and 155 lbs. Over the past 6 months, I’ve had an extremely sedentary lifestyle and get no regular exercise, scarcely even leaving the house except for errands because of my work. My diet could be better but I would not classify it as unbalanced, and I consume copious amounts of water. I am not fat, but I would call my build “doughy”, and my goal is to lower my overall body fat percentage.

    Two days ago I decided to start the program, and I was at 19 sets of Day 1 Level 1 and had to stop at around 13 minutes.

    I was finishing the 19th set of squats and thought it was peculiar that my breath was trembling as I went down into the last few squats. After finishing, I stood there for a moment and my mind told me I was done, I started to feel a slight dizzyness and so I sat down and some moderate nausea washed over me for a few minutes, it was pretty unpleasant.

    Glancing around at some other people’s logs who are ostensibly in much worse physical shape than me, and able to finish Day 1 at comparable rate was a bit unnerving.

    I want to try Day 1 again tomorrow and see if I can’t pace myself a bit better to be able to finish the full duration.

    My other concern, is that my arms are still quite sore two days later, particularly around my pectorals. The last time I tried something like this was the first day of the 100 pushups plan and my arms were sore for literally 6 or 7 days, enough that it put me off that plan entirely. In fact, I have a rich history of unwittingly putting myself off various exercise resolutions by pushing too hard while having absolutely zero conditioning, and making myself nauseous, or sore for days, and ending up backsliding to zero exercise because of association of exercise with misery.

    I guess my main question is, are my difficulties par for the course when doing a proverbial “zero to 60”? It’s been two days and I’m still pretty sore, should I try day 1 again tomorrow?

    Other observations, commentary, anything at all is welcome.


    You did great.

    Day 1 is an endurance day. It’s hard. And if you’ve come off the couch, it’s really hard. Lots of people have muscular strength (day 2). Far fewer have muscular endurance (day 1).

    Again, you did great. Don’t beat yourself up. The most important thing, as noted by your history, is to stick with it. Anything that will cause you to continue to do, even if it is easy, is better than something that causes you to stop.

    Move to day 2. Then do day 3. Each day has its own purpose. However, repeat week 1 next week. Slow down the next time you do day 1 with the goal of finishing the whole 20 mins even if you do the same number of sets as the last time. You might try a set every 1:30 (which would put you at 13 sets – same as last time), to get through the whole 20 minutes. Then the next time you do day 1, set your timer to repeat every 1:20, etc.

    Longer term, if you are doing simplefit MWF, you might want to start walking and then running on TThS. Hal Higdon has a great program to get you to start running.

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