Get Fit To Fix MusculoSkeletal Pain

Sit-ups And Press-ups

I know that a lot of people don't like going to a gym. If that's the case there are four key exercises that I'd recommend you do at home

  • situps
  • pressups
  • back arches - build up to a minute's worth of gentle ups and downs.
  • squats - build up to 1 minutes worth.

These exercises are outlined in the Strength Training Diary that is attached to the Fix Back Pain program.

For situps and pressups I recommend several strategies.

  1. Do the exercises every day and aim to do one more situp/pressup each day.
  2. Do 40 or 50 of each exercise each day, breaking them into sets of 10 repetitions (or less).
  3. Pyramid situps/pressups
  4. Do one and take a breather.
    Then do 2 repetitions and take a breather.
    Then do 3, and then 4 and then 5 ...
    Then come back down, doing 4, 3, 2 and 1.
    Over the weeks and months you can see if you can pyramid
    up to 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10 of each exercise.
    When you can do all the way up to 10 and back, report back. You'll have done 100 situps or pushups and you'll be in good nick.

If you're not good at pressups start by doing them on your knees. As a rule of thumb one knee pressup is worth about half a 'regular' pressup. If you're a women, knee pressups will probably suffice - though once you can build up to 40 or so on the trot you may be ready to do them on your toes. Age doesn't have much to do with it. One of the fittest women at the gym I used to run, who's well into her seniority can knock out 40 good pressups on the knees and 30 on the toes.

You can vary your situp training program. Do crunches with your feet up on a chair. Do some with your feet held under a piece of furniture. Do some with your feet flat and legs bent at 90 degrees. Mix them up for best results.

You'll be amazed at how quickly you can improve at situps and pressups if you're diligent. By the end of 12 weeks I'd be aiming for 40 or 50 of each.

Set yourself a weekly target, based on the number you can do now. Write the weekly target down.


Purchase Fix Back Pain, containing some of the key exercises you need to do to keep your body flexible. I find a good time to do them is after an aerobic exercise session or while watching TV.


The test of mobility is to see how many times you can sit down on the floor (with legs straight out) and stand up straight in 30 seconds. 10 is a good score. The best I've seen is 20, but you need to be as lean as a greyhound and have a high degree of gymnastic ability to get to that level.

To improve on your score in the functional mobility (sitdown and standup) test, do it every couple of weeks.


If you want to lose weight here are a few things you need to do:

  1. Set yourself a target weight loss for each week. Half a kilogram is reasonable.
  2. Imagine, if at the end of 12 weeks you weighed 6Kg less than you did at the start of the program. You'd be puffing your chest out further than John Howard, Tony Blair and George Bush all put together. Losing half a kilo a week is not a crash weight-loss program.

  3. Cut out the garbohydrates - flour and sugar.
  4. Exercise with aerobic vigour - 4 times a week is good, 5 better and 6 best. 20 minutes is good, 30 minutes is better and 40 minutes is best. Heart rate of 120 is good, 130 is better and 140 is best..


Nope, just persistence, discipline and consistency!

They say that 12 weeks is a reasonable time for you to get and then stay focused on getting fitter and healthier, regardless of where you're starting from. At the end of that time I'd be optimistic that there will be a huge improvement in your performance. Just set aside a bit of time each day. Remember, it's one step at a time.

Stephen Covey says in the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, 'start with the end in mind.' Write down the goals you want to achieve by the end of a 12 week program. Break them down into manageable bytes for each week and then set down your daily program to achieve it.

Finally, I heard it said that the hardest thing world champion marathon runner, Robert de Castella had to do every day was get his shorts and sandshoes on every morning and get outside his front door. After that it was one leg at a time.

Take a leaf out of de Castella's book. You'll achieve your goals and come out at the end of the program fit as a trout, lean as a greyhound, toey as a Roman sandal and smelling like roses!

In the meantime stay tuned; highly tuned.


John Miller

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The key to reducing pain is getting your bones back into better alignment.

You do that by working on improving your strength and flexibility.

The pain you're experiencing is your body's way of telling you are out of alignment.

Act now to improve your productivity and lifestyle.