100 Push-up Challenge: A Realization

[If you missed the previous weeks, the links are here: 1, 2, and 3.]

I predicted last week that week four would be tough. I was 100% right. I did Week 4, Day 1 (of 3) on Tuesday. I managed to get through the first couple of sets…but with some major struggles. When it came time to do the last set (a max-out set of AT LEAST 16)…I couldn’t do it. After the first six push-ups, I had to drop to my knees and finish the  ten. It was not a proud moment.  As for Day 2 and Day 3…I can’t remember if I actually got around to doing them. I know for a FACT I didn’t do Day 3, but I really can’t remember about Day 2. If I did Day 2, it was on Friday and I’m pretty sure I dropped many more times to my knees. Needless to say…I did NOT do the progress test. I will attempt Week 4 again–next week.

At the end of last week, I wanted to make sure I did my knee push-ups correctly. (As in, I couldn’t remember if your feet went up or down.) I sat down in front of my computer and started searching. I couldn’t really find anything, but I did find more about how to do a ‘proper’ push-up. So..I’ll be honest. I was used to doing tricep push-ups with your elbows tucked in pretty close to my sides. Before I began the push-up challenge, I managed to convince myself that I was wrong, and that a ‘real’ push-up meant that your elbows had to stick out about 90 degrees from your body. Something like this:

Even though it's wrong, she still looks good doing it.

Even though it’s wrong, she still looks good doing it.

I was actually more correct the first time. Come to find out, bending your elbows at a 90 degree angle away from the body puts a lot of improper stress on the joints and is just plain incorrect. The proper way to do a push-up is to have your elbows bend at a 45 degree angle away from your body. Of course, tricep push-ups are still legitimate. Anyway, when I actually attempt Week 4 and the progress test next week (in its entirety), I’ll actually keep the correct angle and form. I’m a bit worried though because for more than three weeks, I have developed my upper body muscles incorrectly so I am sure that’s going to set me back on my push-up ability.  *sigh*


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