Not long after the new year, I was laying in bed surfing around on YouTube on my iPad, and eventually I came across this video where a guy did 100 push-ups every day for 30 straight days.
He did the smart thing and took measurements of his chest and arms on day 1, and then the video is a montage of him doing push-ups in a variety of ways, and a sub-challenge within the month was that he had this goal of doing 50 straight push-ups, which he eventually accomplished 20-some days into the journey. Eventually, after 30 days, he measured his chest and arms, and there was some gain size, which was ultimately the goal.
“Hmm,” I thought. I could do this. So I did.
I started on January 13th, during the National Championship and did my first 100 push-ups. I started with 25, and then when the realization that my physical fitness levels weren’t necessarily as high as I hoped they would be, I eventually tapered down to 20 and then several sets of 10-12 pushups for the remaining 55.
The following day, I did ten sets of ten, and then that’s when the soreness came into play. Regardless of how much I work out, I’d clearly fallen into a pattern of complacency and not challenging myself, and doing mere push-ups on a daily basis exposed just how much I’d been coasting in the gym over the last few years. My deltoids, triceps, chest and trapezius muscles were achy, but I knew this was a good thing because I was obviously making some physical process, just three days in.
After about a week, the soreness broke, and I was soon capable of being able to do four sets of 25 to hit my 100, which served to be a good barometer to the progress I was making. Throughout the 30 days, I switched up between flat palm push-ups or using dumbbells, and I would widen or narrow my grip periodically. Additionally, I would have the occasional day of many small sets with minimal rest in between, and on a couple of days, I did three sets of 34-33-33.
30 days later, and I measured myself again. In my chest as well as both of my arms, I gained about an inch of growth, give or take, which is pretty decent, considering the fact that this was entirely free. Earlier in the challenge, I had some dull aches in my right wrist as well as shoulder, but both have subsided by the end, leading me to believe that I had fortified some weak points in my body.
Naturally, I’m the type of person who once they start something, I don’t like to stop without good reason, so it shouldn’t come as much of a shock that I’ve been continuing to do the push-ups daily, because they’re good for me, and I don’t want to break a streak. Perhaps I’ll run more measurements at 60 days, or just wait until I hit an even 100, but who knows if my kid will be born by then, because if there were ever a reason for me to lose track of time and not get my push-ups in, it’ll probably be then.
But whatever, the 100 Push-up Challenge was for all intents and purposes successful, and I highly recommend anyone to give it a whirl. It’s free, it’s challenging and the results are tangible and attainable.