The Old Days
Remember when pushups used to carry some clout? Long ago, all that was needed for a great physique was a floor and a pair of arms. Pushups had a way of exposing the weakest in gym classes, instilling fear in new army recruits, and settling the most senseless of frat house bets. It was the movement that could show middle-aged men they’ve “still got it” or that women could be just as strong as men. So why the fall from grace?
Somewhere between the Tae Bo craze and all those charity 5Ks, pushups fell from the limelight. They were old-fashioned, unwanted, and a bit of a “has-been.” But that old kid is back on the block. For the next few weeks, put down your fancy dumbbells and electric ab belts, and try this classic movement.
Why Pushups are Awesome
Most people think pushups only work the chest, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Pushups also work the triceps, shoulders, back, core and glutes. In other words, they work the entire upper body and mid-body. Pushups also allow the upper back to move in a full range of motion unlike the more popular bench press which glues your back to a bench. A little known fact about pushups is that they can actually activate the core muscles (abs and low back) more than traditional core exercises. The pushup forces us to brace our core muscles and keep them stable, which is their designed purpose. And if you slip on some ice? It will be your core strength that will brace, tighten, and keep you from an icy doom.
How many pushups can you do in 1 minute?
|Average Woman||17 to 33||12 to 24||8 to 19||6 to 14||3 to 4|
|Strong Woman||34 to 48||25 to 39||20 to 34||15 to 29||5 to 19|
|Average Man||35 to 44||24 to 34||20 to 29||15 to 24||10 to 19|
|Strong Man||45 to 54||35 to 44||30 to 39||25 to 34||20 to 29|
The Pushup Plan | One - Pick a Pushup
Wall Pushup (Difficulty: Easiest)
Knee Pushup (Difficulty: Medium)
Classic Pushup (Difficulty: Hardest)
The Pushup Plan | Two - Warm Up
10 Jumping Jacks 10 Wall Pushups 9 Jumping Jacks 8 Wall Pushups Repeat 1x
The Pushup Plan | Three - The Workout
|Week 1||6 Reps||3 Sets||2 Minute Rest Between Sets||2X Per Week|
|Week 2||7 Reps||3 Sets||2 Minute Rest Between Sets||2X Per Week|
|Week 3||9 Reps||3 Sets||2 Minute Rest Between Sets||2X Per Week|
|Week 4||8 Reps||4 Sets||2 Minute Rest Between Sets||2X Per Week|