Mamatoga Fit Tip with Jeannine Trimboli: Take the Real [Fit] Life Fitness Challenge. Right now!

Over the weekend Real [Fit] Life had the pleasure of returning to my hometown, Ilion, NY, to participate in a fundraising event. Our goal was to raise enough funds to put dugouts in at one of the neighborhood fields where kids have been throwing balls around since I was a kid. I still remember walking by the South Fifth Field as a kid. My brother and his friends played there a lot. It’s amazing how some things can stay the same for so long, but residents in the Ilion community are working to provide some improvements, and I was very happy to be a part. I am also happy to say that the financial goal was met and a building date has been set for the dugouts to be put in.

There was a bouncy house, face painting, a band, fun games for the kids, all sorts of food, and really yummy looking cupcakes. Amidst all of this Real [Fit] Life offered a fitness challenge. This “test” was comprised of 7 exercises, each delivering a score of 1 for the best, and 3 when improvement was mostly needed.

A lot of the Ilion youth participated in the challenge and I have to say, they all did pretty darn well!

The point of this test is not to make you feel un-fit, but to show you where your strengths and weaknesses are. It’s good to know what is requiring better attention!

To get your own printable score cards, email me at The score card also tells you what areas of fitness each exercise focuses on, such as core strength, balance, mobility, etc., to help you better understand what areas of fitness you might want to focus on more in the future to strengthen your “weak links”.

Now let’s see how you do!

Exercise #1 - Leg extensions

(do this exercise without the belt)

Score criteria:

(Your hips must remain on the ground at all times, and both legs must remain fully extended)

1. Leg goes 90 degrees or further

2. Leg is somewhere between 90 degrees and 45 degrees

3. Leg is lower than 45 degrees

Exercise #2 – Inverted hamstring stretch

Score criteria:

(Your hips must remain “squared”. In other words, don’t let your hip rotate outward as you balance)

1. Fully parallel to the floor, in one long, even line, and balanced. Back leg must be at same height as torso.

2. Balanced at 45 degrees, in one long line

3. Balanced at less than 45 degrees, really wobbly, or cannot perform.

Exercise #3 – Plank

Score criteria:

1. Plank on the ground, one long line from heels to crown of head, holding for 30 seconds or longer

2. Plank on ground for 15 seconds, or elevated for 30 seconds

3. Elevated plank for 15 seconds or less, or cannot perform

Exercise #4 – Squats

Score criteria:

1. Thighs parallel to the floor, heels on the ground, weight back, heels not pushing past center of the feet, shoulders back, chest forward, spine in one long line from tail end to base of skull

2. Partial squat (thighs not parallel to ground) meeting all other same criteria as above

3. Assisted squat with band (cannot perform properly without tool)

Exercise #5 – Pushups

Score criteria:

1. Pushup on the ground, body in one line from heels to crown of head throughout the whole exercise, must lower all the way to ground, and all the way back up 2. Elevated pushup (mid-level) hands on a step or low coffee top, meeting all other same criteria as above

3. Elevated pushup, (high level) – table top, or counter top level, meeting all other same criteria as above

Exercise #6 – Lunges

Score criteria:

1. Perform a split squat through full range of motion, solid balance, shoulders over hips throughout, front heel remains on ground throughout

2. Walking lunges with shoulders over hips throughout, knees not pushing past toes, stable, must be able to take a full step through each time, front thigh parallel to the ground and back knee fully bent

3. Stationary lunges meeting same criteria as walking lunges (minus the “stepping through”)


Exercise #7 – Mountain climbers

Score criteria:

1. Hands on ground, shoulders over wrists, torso STILL, run knees fluidly, and through full range of motion for 30 seconds

2. Elevated hands, same criteria as above

3. Elevated hands, less than 30 seconds or cannot perform. (If you are struggling with the leg coordination, watch this)

Good luck with the test! For fun, I recommend you get the whole family involved. Keep your scores; work on the exercises that need improving, then in 4 to 6 weeks you can come back and take the test again to see how you have improved.

And remember to email me at to get your very own score cards!

Now get out there!