TCOY = Take Care of You

Stay Calm & Plank On

When it comes to taking action, we typically do so because of inspiration or desperation.  The following story is based on inspiration from a photo of Asher, my friend Cristina's little toddler.

The day Cristina shared the photo of Asher in a Plank pose, I smiled and chuckled.  He was learning how to go from lying on his tummy to crawling and was often found holding the plank position.  My immediate comment was, "I love this little guy!”  Then I asked Christina if I could use this photo to inspire others and do a Plank challenge.  She laughed and agreed to let me use the photo of Asher.  What followed is incredible.

I made a few copies of the photo and pitched the "Plank Challenge" idea to my team and our CEO at TVH where I am the Health and Wellness Coach.  Everyone loved it and the "Stay Calm & Plank On" challenge campaign was launched. Asher's photo was included to inspire people of all ages to participate.  Excuses be gone, if Asher can do this, so can you.

Plank helps you build strength in your core, both upper and lower body, so it’s a good full-body workout. You do not need any equipment to perform this exercise, all you need is a bit of space and it really helps improve flexibility by stretching muscles and will improve posture if performed regularly.

If you've never tried one, a plank may look easy, almost too easy to be beneficial, but this is deceiving. The plank is one of the best exercises you can do for your core because it builds isometric strength to help sculpt your waistline and improve your posture. And, depending on the type of plank you try, you can also engage your back, arms, shoulders, glutes, and hamstrings.  

My Plank Challenge was extended to all TVH Americas employees in America, Canada and Mexico.  The challenge was to hold a PLANK position for a minimum of 15 seconds.  The longest time would be recognized as the Top Planker.  Teams were also allowed to participate to receive the TTP (Top Team Plankers) recognition.  All planks needed to be performed on Friday, January 13, 2017.

Nothing inspires people more than fun mixed with a little friendly competition.  This was evident on the day of the event as employee participation was huge!  People were planking in the hallways in the offices and on the floor in the warehouses. Team spirit was alive and well as co-workers cheered each other on during the timed planks. Pictures and times were posted from coast to coast.

Everyone was on board; both office employees and warehouse workers with an age range from 18 into the 60s.  The planks bridged any and all boundaries creating camaraderie and a spirit of "I can do this".  Mission Accomplished.

At the end of the day the numbers were quite impressive.  The Plank Challenge had 264 successful participants.  The Top Planker was our CEO, Els Thermote, leading the pack with a plank time of 10 minutes and 9 seconds.  The Top Planking team consisted of the TVH Executives:  Els Thermote - 10:09, Dirk VonHolt - 3:00; and Frank Carter with 2:30. Wow!  I challenge any company to compete with our executives.

Yours truly ranked in the Top 5 with a time of 5:05 which was without a doubt achieved due to competitive spirit.  One never really knows what they can achieve until the pressure is on.

My greatest satisfaction was in witnessing my idea; inspired by a toddler, impact and encourage so many people to get down on the floor and push themselves.

I shared information and pictures about the Challenge on social media and the domino effect continued.  People were not only commenting but taking the challenge themselves.  After sharing stories about the planking challenge while visiting a business one morning, I returned that afternoon and was informed that as soon as I left they all hit the floor and had their own plank challenge.  

The challenge is contagious.  I hope you will take it too.  Add it to your daily routine, whether upon rising in the morning, on a break or before bed.  A plank utilizes every major muscle group and is a quick and easy way to enhance your physical well-being.

FYI: Pictures from my Plank Challenge are posted on my TCOY Wellness Facebook page.  I'd love to know if you're taking me up on my challenge.  Send me your plank time and photo and I'll be sure to reply with a, "Way to Go!" for your efforts.  

Remember, wellness isn't about perfection; it's about being proactive and consistent with sustainable actions, for the health of it. Start wherever you are and build from there.  

*Videos: How To Do A Plank and 3-Minute Plank Workout

Until next month, remember to:
TCOY = Take Care of You

Coach Lucy

                      TCOY recommendations:              

TCOY Tidbits...


"You're only given a little spark of madness. You musn't lose it."

- Robin Williams 


"Nothing ever becomes real until it is experienced."

- John Keats 


"Is the life I'm living the life that wants to live in me?"

- Parker Palmer


Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known."

- Carl Sagan


"I've seen extreme bravery from the least likely of people. Life is about the moments when it's all gone wrong. That's when we define ourselves."

- Bear Grylls 



Strength from Scripture: 

He Give Strength To The Weary

Isaiah 40:29

Run Your Race To Win

1 Corinthians 9:23

  Find the Joy in the Journey

My monthly stories are simple reminders that every day provides choices and opportunities to learn and apply life lessons.  

Life is what we make it.  Be the change you want to see in the world.

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Life is short; learn to dance in the rain and realize, perfection isn't sustainable so do the best you can with what you have.  

Live, love & laugh. Cyber hugs!

Coach Lucy

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