Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Push Ups for Girls

I didn't master push ups until my 30s and I know lots of women who have lived without ever executing one military style push up. Which is a shame, because there's nothing better (or sexier!) than feeling strong in your body.

If you are a woman (or man!) looking to master push ups, here's how I did it.

It started with a karate class when our Sensei issued a 5000 challenge. Pick one technique, any technique, do it 5000 times in three months and win a T-shirt.

Most people in my class selected a kick or a punch, but being the only woman in the dojo, I was tired of struggling with push ups. Tired of standing out.

So I selected push ups as my technique to perfect.

5000 push ups in 90 days translates into 55 push ups a day. Only I couldn't even do 10 push ups on my knees let alone 1 military style push up, which meant I was working at a deficit right from the beginning.

Indeed, at the end of the challenge, I was doing 100 to 300 push ups a day just to catch up.

But I did all 5000 push ups.

And at the end of that 90 days, I was off my knees and doing true push ups with the guys in my dojo.

Here's what I learned.

1.If you plan the work and work the plan, you will succeed.

2.You can do 100, 200, 300 push ups every day, even if it hurts*, and you will gain strength.

So if you want to get strong enough to do push ups then start by doing push ups. Start on your knees and add in some plank position holds. Keep trying to do it military style.

Do push ups even if it hurts.

Do push ups even if your form is less than ideal (tip: form will improve as strength improves).

Just do it!

At first it'll be too much just to hold the push up position. Then you'll crank out your first wobbly, half-a$$ed push up and once you've gotten to that point, it's all downhill.

Just show up and keep working and, before you know it, you'll be doing 100 military push ups like I was this past summer.

It can be done. You can do it, but you have to show up and put in the sweat.

P.S. Since you're not on a 90 day deadline like I was, aim for every other day instead of every day.

*Routine soreness is okay, injury pain is not. Never work through an injury.

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