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The Ups and Downs of Push-Ups

Charles Thurston-Snoha

Posted on June 14, 2018 22:27

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The amazing results I experienced by implementing push-ups into my regular exercise regimen

With all the machines and exercise equipment available nowadays, you just don’t see people doing push-ups anymore. You see plenty of gym-goers working their chest and arm muscles with all different types of machines and by doing dumbbell and bench presses, but rarely do you see someone jump to the floor and start doing push-ups. In fact, in today’s society, push-ups are viewed as more of a punishment than a great exercise tool. I remember having to do them all the time playing high school and college sports.

I’m not sure how it is today, but back in my day, screwing up was associated with wind-sprints and countless push-ups. So much so, I neglected to do either for many years after I graduated from college. I can’t speak for the military, but I’ve heard they use push-ups in a similar fashion. Years later, and far removed from the “seemingly barbaric” punishment techniques doled out by my coaches, I can appreciate the physical benefits of push-ups.

Now, I’m aware that there are plenty of variations and entire workouts devoted just to push-ups, but I’ll just discuss what worked for me—A.K.A. my self-induced “punishment.” Earlier in the year, due to a lot of traveling and a back injury, I had to take some time off from weight training, which seemed to be plateauing anyway. I still tried to do cardio on a regular basis, but due to my injury, weight training was strictly out of the question. It’d fare up if I even tried. So I took some time off, let my back heal up, and when I was ready to return to the gym, I decided to “punish” myself by doing push-ups at the end of every workout. Nothing crazy or elaborate. I would simply go to the gym, do my regular workout, and close out the night by doing as many push-ups as I could do in one minute. Some days were better than others, but I pushed myself to keep doing them at the end of every workout, even if my muscles were already fatigued and were screaming for me to stop.

The crazy thing is the results I experienced from such a small investment in time (only about five minutes per week). I found myself more motivated, stronger, and noticed a significant difference in my physique (my wife did too). Working in tandem, those are the building blocks for continued success. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I know if I start to see and experience significant gains, it’s all the motivation I need to keep going. And, that’s not even the best part. You can basically do push-ups anywhere. All you need is a floor and the motivation to get started. You can do them at work, on vacation, or on the side of the road if you get desperate. Just start “punishing” yourself and start experiencing the rewards for yourself…

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