All that is standing between you and your dream body is 28 days. Well, almost, 28 days, a little hard work and some exercise. Let us introduce you to the 28-day planking challenge to help you get a new, better body.

What is the 28-day plank challenge?

No, it’s not the Facebook planking fad that saw everyone and their granny lie down flat across a number of amusing surfaces. As fun as that was, it isn’t going to help you tone and get the body you want.

This challenge is perhaps slightly more difficult, to undertake it you’re going to need to perfect one of the best strength-building exercises out there––the plank.

Benefits of the plank

Planking works by engaging a number of your body’s key muscle groups across your lower and upper back, arms, legs, abdomen, and butt.

By holding the plank position, you will improve your overall posture, tone your muscles, and burn some fat along the way. Simple, but effective, the plank looks easy, but keeping the perfect position is what’s truly a challenge, but, in completing it, you will receive one of the best benefits of the challenge, aside from a better body––endurance.

How to plank

We advise starting with a classic planking pose.

plank from the floor

  1. Lie face down on mat.
  2. Raise your body up with your arms out straight directly under your shoulders and legs straight. Your back should be aligned and straight also, and you should feel a tightness in your stomach muscles.
  3. You are now in plank pose. Hold this position for the required time, and then gently release.

While stating with the classic pose is advisable, you can also try these alternative plank poses for the challenge:

Elbow bend plank

plank on the elbows

Side plank

outdoor side plank

Toe top planks

outdoor top leg plank

Reaching plank (aka two-point plank)

joint plank exercise

Side leg-lift plank

leg in the air plank

The challenge

No matter which plank you choose, the goal here is to gradually increase your level of strength alongside the amount of time you can hold the plank pose.

Each day you should lengthen the amount of time you spend in the plank position, holding it for as long as you need to complete the challenge.

Day 1 – 20 seconds

Day 2 – 20 seconds

Day 3 – 30 seconds

Day 4 – 30 seconds

Day 5 – 40 seconds

Day 6 – Rest day. Time to take a break and let those muscles of yours recover.


Day 7 – 45 seconds

Day 8 – 45 seconds

Day 9 ­– 60 seconds

Day 10 – 60 seconds

Day 11 – 60 seconds

Day 12 – 90 seconds

Day 13 – Phew! You made it halfway. Take a breather, before the second half.


Day 14 – 90 seconds

Day 15 – 90 seconds

Day 16 – 120 seconds

Day 17 – 120 seconds

Day 18 – 150 seconds

Day 19 – Time out! Take the day off and do a little recovery.


Day 20 – 150 seconds

Day 21 – 150 seconds

Day 22 – 180 seconds

Day 23 – 180 seconds

Day 24 – 210 seconds

Day 25 – Take a break. This is your final pit stop before the 28-day finale. Enjoy it!


Day 26 – 210 seconds

Day 27 – 240 seconds

Day 28 – Just keep holding! By now you’ve built your muscles and toned your bottom––you can do this! Hold the pose as long as you can and perhaps time yourself to see what you’ve achieved.

Done! Now, what’s next?

As the challenge is so short––28-days only––many ask what comes next? That’s where the real fun comes in.

Once you’ve completed the original challenge, you may wish to go back and consider a do-over with some of the other plank poses and challenge yourself to meet new goals.

Remember, you can do it!

Written by Maria Isabella Neverovich
Maria is an Irish writer, Health Editor at Verv, lover of forests, mountains and all things nature. She enjoys discovering new vegetarian dishes, creating...
View all articles