We went up, down, up, down, up, down.

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Hundred Pushup Challenge

 

Lauren - Instructor

AnnMarie - Owner/Instructor

Most of us have a love-hate relationship with pushups. We’ve all seen the videos of people doing sexier versions of the pushups: there’s the single handed pushups, pushups with a clap in between, pushups done with someone sitting on your back. But let’s not lose site of the fact that plain old pushups are a thing of beauty, too. Whether you’re on your knees or your toes, they are hard. And, like a lot of things that are hard, they are insanely effective. Which is why I love the 100 Pushup Challenge. Because the only way to get better at pushups is to do them, lots of them.

So I asked Lauren if she’d be game to do this challenge with me. Sweet, unsuspecting Lauren’s response was “Yes! I will push up a million times for you.” I’ve done this challenge before (and try to work it in a couple of times a year), so I knew what to expect. Lauren, however, did not. Heh, heh, heh.

Here we go BOHObesties: the One Hundred Pushup Challenge.

LAUREN:

What were your expectations?

I've never been great at pushups. I always feel like my shoulder bones are going to spontaneously combust, so I've always been more of a free-weight gal. Let's say I wasn't super pumped (pun intended) about the idea of this challenge.

What did you like about this program?

There was an app for my phone that told me exactly how many pushups to do each day. Yay for technology! It was a relief when I found out I wasn't doing 100 pushups a day because I thought that was the setup at first. You start the challenge based on the number of pushups you can comfortably complete with good form at the start of the challenge. I'm usually a knees-on-the-ground pusher upper, so I did 10 good-form pushups to start with.

What you didn't like about the program.

Even though the phone app was really great to use, I wish it had a push notification that allowed me to schedule the pushups. That was the hardest part: fitting the pushups into my current workout routine. It sounds silly, but when you get home from a long run, pushups aren't exactly at the top of your list of fun things to do. 

Physically how did/do you feel?

Let's be honest, my arms were sore pretty much the entire five weeks of pushups. Uh, did you catch that? I only made it through five of the six weeks. Between all my BOHO arm tracks, my new love for yoga at Om On Yoga, and pushups, I was struggling to lift my arms and brush my hair. I decided to cut it short. But then once I got over the sore arms, I noticed a big difference in how strong I felt during yoga. My downward dogs were so on point!

Can you fit this into your daily life?

Absolutely! Actually doing the pushups really takes no time at all. The trick is adding it into your schedule so you make it happen. I started carving out an extra five minutes before I left my house to teach class to get them done. I've heard a lot of people do them before they get in the shower in the morning, but for me just walking from my bed to the shower in the morning is an accomplishment, so I wanted to be realistic.

ANNMARIE:

What were your expectations?

As I mentioned, I’ve already done this challenge a few times and I’ve found it’s a good change to my daily workout routine. I love short term goals—love them! This one is right up my alley because it’s only six weeks long (down from an older version that lasted seven weeks)!

What I like about the program:

I can do these at home if I need to—no gym membership required. I found the best time of day to knock them out was the end of my day when I was done thinking and ready to watch some pointless TV, which I’ve been told describes all shows on HGTV. I disagree with this statement, but we will discuss TV shows in a later BOHOlife post.

The absolute best part of this program is how easy it is to modify pushups. If I’m not feeling it one day, I might throw in some knee pushups or take a longer recovery between sets, or—honestly—just skip a day and throw in a little more rest. Some days you’re supposed to do five sets, but you may find it easier to spread out the work among six or seven sets. Just do what works for you.

What did you dislike about the program?

My limit for consecutive pushups with good form is 15. Anything more I just cannot. As I got further into the challenge, those longer sets killed me. I’m never going to be the person who puts another person on her back to do pushups—well, maybe Lauren, but she’s petite. Boredom set in at around week four for me. I’m over pushups by then. I completed five weeks, then bailed.

How did you feel physically?

The first time I did this challenge I was very surprised by how many different muscle groups are involved in doing a pushup. This isn’t just about your chest. I didn’t expect the change I saw in my core and hips. All in all, I feel stronger and I love it.

Can you fit this into your daily life?

It’s only 20 minutes a day, three days a week. It was so easy to fit it in my daily life.            Do it, BOHO. Do it!


Are you up for the challenge? Let us know by commenting below and Lauren and I will do the pushups with you before class!

Tips for good form pushpus:

1. Place your hands slightly further than shoulder width.                           

2. To maintain correct body alignment, imagine a straight line running from your head down to your ankles.

3. No sagging! This is the time to keep your core tight.

4. Don’t lead with your head. If your nose is lower than your hips you’re doing them wrong.

5. Hold you head up and breathe!

6. Some feel “good form” means your chest touches the ground (BOHO does not) and then you push back up. The goal is for elbows to bend to 90 degrees and then push back up.

Check out a few more tips here.