YouTuber Jensen Tung was stuck. Like many of us, he’d understandably let himself go as the pandemic raged on, then realized it was going to be harder than he thought to get back into fighting shape. With gyms locked down and unwilling to outfit his own home workout center (it’s really not that hard, we promise) he decided to challenge himself with something different: 30 days of working out on a playground.
As he lays out in his video, he began thinking he’d just exercise the way he did as a kid. But he’s not seven anymore, and monkeying around was more physically challenging than he remembered. And there were other hurdles, from the questioning looks from parents (the playground kids didn’t seem to mind him) to a scraped shin early in his quest. Rainy Vancouver weather, of course, didn’t care about his plans, either. There was even a bear warning.
He notes that focusing on small goals helped keep him motivated—rather than checking out his body in the mirror every day, searching for signs of transformation, he committing to showing up every day, doing whatever he could at the playground. (If you’re interested in following in his footsteps but don’t need the jungle gym, check out our guide to calisthenics.)
By the end of a month, he decided his quirky YouTube idea was actually a viable workout idea. “The playground tests your persistence and determination,” he says, “it pushes you to be strategic and creative.” The biggest thing he got out of the challenge wasn’t a body change, but a new mentality—one more open to adaptation and eager to embrace limitations. Pretty heady stuff for a playground.
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