Friday, February 4, 2011

The 2011 Push Up Challenge

Last year when I was slogging through my thesis it seemed to help me to exercise between periods of writing. I found the 100 pushup challenge online: Basically it shows you how to go from whatever pushup fitness level you are currently at to 100 consecutive pushups in 6 weeks.

I don’t know about you, but my upper body strength has always been poor. I played soccer for 10 years and that certainly didn't help. So pushups have been something I avoided like the plague (along with pull ups, and chin ups and rope climbing, etc.). BUT think about the benefits and advantages to pushups:

• Pushups are very basic. No expensive equipment required, you can do them anywhere at any time.

• They are not only great for your chest, but your abs, triceps, shoulders and torso. It’s really a great core exercise.

• It’s very easy to add variations to the basic pushup to make them easier, harder, or to focus on certain muscles.

When I did the program last year I did the knee pushup variation so that I wouldn’t give up right away. I started out only being able to do 8 before I collapsed on the floor. And I made my way up to 40 consecutive pushups after a few weeks. But then I hit a plateau and when I wasn’t making more progress I gave up and didn’t complete the challenge.

So, I’m giving it another go. My initial test this time was 20 consecutive pushups (still knees, but if I get brave I’ll switch to the real ones later). I’m posting this online in hopes that it will help me stick to the plan and be more successful this time around—and to encourage others to try it too. The program is very simple to follow and only takes about 30 minutes a week.

A quick note about pushups—while they have a lot of benefits, its best to do pushups with other strength training exercises to even everything out. Basically with only pushups you don’t work the muscles involved in pulling, which isn’t ideal. But pushups are still a simple way get started.

Good luck!


David said...

When you perform a push up, you have to press approximately 70% of your body weight. With pull ups you have to be able to pull 100% of your weight up to the bar. If you don’t have the strength to do correct push ups or pull ups, for a significant number of repetitions, you can’t get any positive results or you don’t even try. One of the best aspects of the Push Up Bench is that you start off with immediate success. As you move through each level you can achieve your goal many times over-which in turn motivates you to keep exercising. The Push Up Bench is designed to make push ups and pull ups easier. This will allow for a greater number of repetitions. You can start at the highest level, which means you only have to push 28% of your body weight instead of 70%. The Push Up Bench transfers the weight from your upper body to your feet- decreasing the amount of weight you have to press. Now you can do push ups with perfect form- which allows you to get full range of motion and hit all the muscle groups the push up exercise has to offer. As you get stronger, you can increase the weight you have to push by going through each level until your on the ground doing normal push ups. You can also increase the load on your arms by doing decline push ups. The Push Up Bench is adjustable to fit each person’s height from approximately 4’8 to 6’4. You don’t have to stop once you reach a full push up. The Push Up Bench also makes pull ups easier. By sitting inside the Bench you are able to perform seated or assisted pull ups. If your looking to tone your arms, increase your strength, need help passing a physical fitness test or just want to look and feel better, the Push Up Bench can help you achieve your goals. To learn more google “push up bench”

Lisa said...

Wow, thanks. In my online pushup research I hadn't see the push up bench. That's pretty cool!