Getting your body in shape can be a daunting task. A cornerstone to any physical fitness plan is to set goals for yourself and to create a realistic regimen that will allow you to achieve those goals. Before you do this however, you will need to determine your fitness level. After you've done both these things, you can then work a fitness routine.
Determine Your Fitness Level
One of the first steps creating your fitness regimen is to discern your current fitness level. In terms of pushups and situps, you can accomplish this by testing yourself. After warming up and stretching, test yourself in both these exercises by doing one set of each exercise at the maximum amount of repetitions you can consecutively perform until muscle failure. Be sure to give yourself a brief break between the two exercises. After you've completed this test, you should have an idea of where your fitness level is for these exercises.
Once you've determined your fitness level, you should then establish goals to work toward. These goals will shape your fitness routine from your daily workout to how long your regimen will take to get you to your goals and how hard you will need to work to maintain your new level of fitness. If you are having trouble setting goals, examine what your fitness motives are, be they to get healthier, to prepare for a job or sport or simply to look better.
Muscle endurance takes time to build. Consider using a fitness ladder system to achieve your goals. A fitness ladder is a system of gradual improvement over time, through small gains. Try a workout schedule of three to four days a week, using the days between to rest.
On your first workout day, complete one set slightly below your maximum level of reps from your self-test. Then complete a set at your maximum level. Drop this back down to the previous level below the maximum for the next two sets, then complete a final set at or exceeding your maximum level of reps. This system works for increasing both pushups and situps.
Continuing The Regimen
You'll want to continue this ladder system throughout your fitness regimen. Given proper rest between workout days, and very brief rests between sets, you should be able to increase your overall consecutive repetitions for each exercise.
Each workout day you should establish a higher number of repetitions just below your maximum level, as well as a new number of repetitions above your previous maximum.