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CAUSTICMUSE's Photo CAUSTICMUSE Posts: 14
6/29/09 8:01 P

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So...I went into the US Army at 14 years ago as an out-of-shape, 20-year-old bookworm weighing 152 pounds at 5'6" and only able to do 9 full push-ups that the drill sergeants would count. (If you are on your knees, they don't ever count, even if your elbows do hit 90 degrees.) You don't really get to work your way up via progressions in Basic.

By the end of the 8 weeks of basic training, I was up to 33 or so in two minutes. I'd only lost 4 pounds, but relentless rounds of push-ups in morning PT and as general punishment whenever anyone in the squad, platoon, or company did something wrong pretty much did the trick. By the time I got out 4 years later, I was doing over 65 reps in two minutes. I've gotten over 80 at my fittest point a few years ago, and I knocked out 29/33/29/29/66 reps in the week 4, day 3 Hundred Push-Ups workout yesterday at the ripe old age of 34. I'm shooting for the 100 reps by September 29 this year. :)

I actually found that holding plank (the "up" position in a push-up) when my arms and chest failed and then resting until I could squeeze out a few more reps (rinse and repeat) did the most for me. The plank position helps build up the core strength you need to do more reps.

If you are not overweight, knee push ups are close to useless, especially if you are a pear with most of your weight in your bottom half.

Also, using a variety of hand positions -- wide, diamond, regular, tricep/military -- recruits more muscles and builds up your push-up endurance faster than just doing one type of push up over and over. If you can't do variants on your toes, then at least give a shot in any of those progressions shown on the Stumptuous site.

The women who had the hardest time with push-ups tended to be the taller, thinner girls because they had to drop down lower with muscles that were stretched over longer levers and the women who carried their weight in their upper bodies--your typical apple body types who had more weight to press up than us bottom-heavy gals.

One final note about push-up ability...don't expect to excel at this exercise if you are afraid of bulking up your triceps. Those muscles were the ones I noticed had suddenly appeared on my body right around the time I started to find push-ups a lot easier than before.

- Maggie, who celebrates each birthday by doing 10 push-ups per year of life

Edited by: CAUSTICMUSE at: 6/29/2009 (20:22)

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ICANDI4U's Photo ICANDI4U SparkPoints: (0)
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5/31/09 10:12 P

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Thanks for the info everyone. I too struggle with doing push up and chin ups. Always have since grade school. My upper body strength has improved quite a bit. I can do a few reg push up (less than 10) and can do a couple sets of 12-15 girlie ones and that is it. I too would like to improve the amount of push ups I can do at a time. :o)

We can do it! One day at a time. :)


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LIMASTAR Posts: 6,923
5/30/09 11:03 P

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Good luck on the 100 push ups. I'm able to do week 3 pretty consistently, but just been too distracted to move on to week 4. I'm hoping June will be a better month.

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FINDINGI's Photo FINDINGI Posts: 18
5/29/09 11:18 P

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wow thanks for the link to stumptuous, I had forgotten all about that site, It is awesome. I can do about 27 pushups now. I am starting the 100 pushups program tommorrow. emoticon

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LIMASTAR Posts: 6,923
5/29/09 3:19 A

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Try googling "one hundred push ups". This site gives you a "6 Week Program" for building up to 100 Push ups.

I've been doing it since Jan. For me, for every week of the program, I've needed a month before being able to move on to the next week. I'm presently stuck at week 4 because I've been busy & haven't been as diligent as before.

For me the program has worked and I probably would have been further along if I were more consistent. But I'm happy that I'm able to do as many as I can.

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LIMASTAR Posts: 6,923
5/29/09 3:18 A

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Try googling "one hundred push ups". This site gives you a "6 Week Program" for building up to 100 Push ups.

I've been doing it since Jan. For me, for every week of the program, I've needed a month before being able to move on to the next week. I'm presently stuck at week 4 because I've been busy & haven't been as diligent as before.

For me the program has worked and I probably would have been further along if I were more consistent. But I'm happy that I'm able to do as many as I can.

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LIMASTAR Posts: 6,923
5/29/09 3:18 A

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Try googling "one hundred push ups". This site gives you a "6 Week Program" for building up to 100 Push ups.

I've been doing it since Jan. For me, for every week of the program, I've needed a month before being able to move on to the next week. I'm presently stuck at week 4 because I've been busy & haven't been as diligent as before.

For me the program has worked and I probably would have been further along if I were more consistent. But I'm happy that I'm able to do as many as I can.

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KRISTIMD's Photo KRISTIMD Posts: 135
1/24/09 4:36 P

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I did the push ups from the knees for a long time before I could do a real one...probably a year. If you are over 200 pounds that's a lot to try to push up. It's hard for me to even push up my own body weight at 125. As someone else said, though, just keep at it and do some weight training for your upper body, plus I'm sure it will get easier once you lose more weight.



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CURVYCARA's Photo CURVYCARA SparkPoints: (0)
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3/21/08 6:49 P

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www.stumptuous.com/cms/displayarticl
e.
php?aid=75


This page gives good advice and progression tips. I suggest you read it all, but there are pics at the bottom that will help. I love this website!

:o) CurvyCara "Don't let what you can't do interfere with what you can do" -John Wooden

"In media ideal terms, there's so much wrong with me that the only thing to be done is burn the whole house down and start again! Hahaha! Oh wait, my teeth are straight. Those can stay. " Krista Scott-Dixon : www.stumptuous.com

"My problem is I analyse everything too much...
...or maybe not enough..." Bill Bailey


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KAREN7360's Photo KAREN7360 Posts: 3,795
3/21/08 6:43 P

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Push ups are a very difficult exercise for women. But they can be accomplished with upper body strengthening and starting in small steps. You could start with doing them against a wall, and then go to the kitchen counter and then to the floor on the knees etc.

It requires alot of upper body strength because you are using all of the muscles in your upper body as well as trying to work against the gravity of your bodyweight. Just give it time and never give up trying. Start lifting weights which will help immensely to build strength.

"Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go"
SHUTTERFLY's Photo SHUTTERFLY SparkPoints: (0)
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3/21/08 6:39 P

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honestly, I started out last year with a trainer, and could not do one SINGLE girly push up...but he had me try every day..that and strength training had me doing 3 sets of 20 push ups in 3 months....don't give up, just keep trying and you will succeed with this!!!!!!!!!!

Valerie

"When I let go of what I am; I become what I might be" Lao Tzu

"Choose well. Your choice is brief, and yet endless."
Goethe

"It does not matter how slowly you go, so long as you do not stop."
Confucius


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FROGGURUAMI's Photo FROGGURUAMI Posts: 268
3/21/08 6:36 P

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Other then MORE PUSHUPS, what can I do to help with push ups. I can do 8 to 10 at a 45 degree angle. I would really like to do real floor push ups. (I can't even do one!)

AM

"When eating a fruit, think of the person who planted the tree."

"People often say that motivation does not last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily."


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