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What is a push up?

According to Wikipedia, a push-up (USA English), or a press-up (UK English), is "a


common strength training exercise performed in a prone position, lying horizontal and face
down, raising and lowering the body using the arms."
Push ups are a basic exercise used in civilian athletic training or physical education and,
especially, in military physical training and will develop the pectoral muscles and triceps,
with ancillary benefits to the deltoids, serratus anterior, coracobrachialis and the
midsection as a whole.

Instructions for "good-form" push ups

Lie prone on the ground with hands placed as wide or slightly wider than shoulder width.
Keeping the body straight, lower body to the ground by bending arms at the elbows. Raise
body up off the ground by extending the arms. Repeat.
Body weight should be lifted by the arms; don't be tempted to use your butt, stomach or
the lower half of your body to pull yourself up. To maintain correct body alignment,
imagine a straight line running from your head down to your ankles.

Instructions for "alternative" push ups

So you've tried the "good-form" push ups, but can only manage one or two before
exhaustion sets in.
Don't be despondent; several alternative options exist which will still enable you to follow
the hundred push ups plan.
[Push up animation courtesy Blaine Moore:RunToWin.com]
"Knee" push ups - to reduce the lifting load by about 50% you can do the same
exercise, but do it on your knees. Keeping a straight line from neck to torso is still
important, so please pay attention to correct body alignment as you perform your
workout.
"Knuckle" push ups - don't worry, these are not just for the hard-core push up folks.
Some people experience wrist discomfort as they perform "good-form" push ups, but by
closing your hands and making a fist, your body weight ends up on your knuckles
instead of your palms, thus avoiding the wrist extension motion. Note: Please be sure
to do this type of push up on a padded mat, plush carpet or even better a rolled up
towel.
"Bench" push ups - you can also use a low bench or chair to support your arms while
you perform either regular push ups or "knee" push ups. This type of push up allows you
to really concentrate on the push up motion; all without the strain of the regular
version. Note: Please be sure the bench or chair is stable and secure before you
perform the push ups.
"Wall" push ups - if all the above options are still too challenging, one final variation
exists. The "wall" push up dramatically reduces the pressure on the arms, upper back
and abs. The closer you stand to the wall, the easier they are to perform, but
remember, it's still important to be aware of your body alignment as you perform the
"wall" push up. As you gain strength and confidence, move your feet slightly further
away from the wall to make the workout more challenging. Feel free to consider moving
to the "bench" or "knee" style push ups once your initial strength has increased.
Remember, the main aim of the hundred push ups program is to improve your strength,
fitness and general health. It really doesn't matter what style of push up you perform as
long as you continue to make progress and keep challenging yourself. Give the 6-week
program a chance and I know you'll be amazed at your new found strength. Good luck!

Why push ups?

Push ups are one of the basic and most common exercises for the human body. Push ups
are not only great for your chest, but do a tremendous job of defining your abs, triceps,
shoulders and torso.
Push ups can be performed no matter where you are, and best of all, they are completely
free - no expensive equipment or annual gym fees required! If you're looking to develop a
great chest and shoulders, you could do much worse than follow along with the hundred
push ups plan. Your core strength will also go through the roof too!
To improve your strength, fitness and general health all you need to do is commit about 30
minutes of your time per week, and follow the push ups training program as closely as you
can. I promise you will feel much better about yourself and much more confident after just
a few short workouts.
Good luck!

Initial test
Before you dive in and start the Hundred Push Ups Program, you should:

obtain medical advice and clearance from your doctor


take an initial push ups test.
The test will highlight your current fitness level and determine where to start and how to
plan your push ups training program.
initial test: the road to one hundred push ups
AGE

< 40 YEARS

RANK *

40 - 55 YEARS

> 55 YEARS

number of pushups performed

0-5

0-5

0-5

6 - 14

6 - 12

6 - 10

15 - 29

13 - 24

11 - 19

30 - 49

25 - 44

20 - 34

50 - 99

45 - 74

35 - 64

100 - 150

75 - 124

65 - 99

150 & above

125 & above

100 & above

To perform the test, simply execute as many good-form push ups as you can. Don't cut
corners and please don't cheat - the last thing you want to do is end up in the wrong level
of the training program! The results may be humbling, but trust me, honesty is the best
policy if you want to maximize your strength gains!
Once you've collapsed in a sweaty heap on the floor and your arms have stopped
trembling from the exertion, make a note (mental or otherwise) of how many, or how few,
push ups you were able to perform. As an example, the first time I performed the test, I
managed to eek out just 19 consecutive good-form push ups.
Before starting Week 1, I recommend taking a couple of days to familiarize yourself with
the program and recover from the exertion of the initial test. You'll be required to work out
three times per week - Monday, Wednesday, Friday worked well for me.
Don't forget how many push ups you performed in the test and if you're still keen to
improve your strength and fitness, read 1 to learn more about the program.
* If you're concerned about your Rank in the extreme left column; there's really no need.
The scale of 1 to 7 is purely an indicator of current fitness, and can be used as a
comparison tool between yourself, friends, family & co-workers.
Most people tend to fall into Rank 2 or 3 which is a great starting point for the plan. If
you're ranked 1, you may need to consider one of the alternative push ups on the "What is
a push up" page. If you're ranked 6 or 7, maybe you need a tougher plan?!

Week 1
So, you've completed your initial test and you're keen to start the program? Great!
If you managed 5 or less push ups in the test, follow column 1.
If you completed between 6 and 10 push ups, column 2 is for you.
Between 11 and 20 consecutive push ups? Impressive! Column 3 is what you're looking
for.
More than 20 push ups? I would suggest starting the program on Week 3. Choose either
Column 2 or 3 based on the number of push ups you managed in your initial test.
For example: let's say you managed 8 push ups. Looking at the second column, Day 1
begins with Set 1 (6 push ups), a rest period of 60 seconds, before moving on to Set 2 (6
push ups). Rest for 60 seconds and continue with Set 3 (4 push ups) and Set 4 (4 push
ups), before finishing with Set 5 and as many consecutive push ups as you can
comfortably manage (at least 5, but not so many that you damage muscle tissue). The 60
seconds rest between each level should allow you to complete the workout, but I promise
it will get tough towards the end.
Treat yourself to a rest day before moving on to Day 2, and then again before you
complete Day 3. I find that Monday, Wednesday, Friday works well and allows you to use
the weekend for rest and recovery before moving on to the next stage of the program.
Feel free to juggle the plan around to meet your busy schedule, but make sure you rest in
between workout days.

week 1: pick the appropriate column depending on your initial test results
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
up to 5 push ups

6 - 10 push ups

11 - 20 push ups

SET 1

10

SET 2

12

SET 3

SET 4

SET 5

max (at least 3)

max (at least 5)

max (at least 9)

DAY 2
REST 90 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

10

SET 2

12

SET 3

SET 4

SET 5

max (at least 4)

max (at least 7)

max (at least 12)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3
REST 120 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

11

SET 2

10

15

SET 3

SET 4

SET 5

max (at least 5)

max (at least 10)

max (at least 13)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 1
Hopefully you made it safely through the first week and now you're keen to move on
to Week 2. However, if for some reason you struggled with the program, I would suggest
either retaking the initial test or repeating Week 1. You'll probably be surprised at how
much stronger you already are and will sail through the first week and be fired up and
raring to go.
If you're ready to move on, let's take a look at Week 2 of the Hundred Push Ups
Program.

Week 2
Week 1 should now be comfortably behind you and it's time to start Week 2 of
the hundred push ups program. Continue by following the same column of
exercises as you did in Week 1. Don't cut any corners, but feel free to take a
little more rest between each level if you need to. It's also important to be well
hydrated before you start each workout.
At the end of Week 2 it will be time to check your strength and perform an
exhaustion test. In simple terms, perform as many good-form push ups as you
can comfortably manage before you physically can't do another rep. Stress your
system by all means, but please don't go beyond the safety limit. The number of
push ups you complete will determine which level of the program you'll start
inWeek 3. Perform this test within a couple of days of completing Week 2. Good
luck!
week 2: pick the same column as you did in week 1
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
up to 5 push ups

6 - 10 push ups

11 - 20 push ups

SET 1

14

SET 2

11

14

SET 3

10

SET 4

10

SET 5

max (at least 6)

max (at least 11)

max (at least 15)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 2
REST 90 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

10

14

SET 2

12

16

SET 3

12

SET 4

12

SET 5

max (at least 7)

max (at least 13)

max (at least 17)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3
REST 120 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

12

16

SET 2

13

17

SET 3

10

14

SET 4

10

14

SET 5

max (at least 8)

max (at least 15)

max (at least 20)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 2
Don't forget, now you've completed Week 2, it's time to take an exhaustion test.
Perform as many good-form push ups as you can manage before you physically
can't do another one. Make a note of how many push ups you complete, and
move on to Week 3. Hope you're ready for the next level!

Week 3
You should be a little stronger than you were a couple of weeks ago and able to
complete considerably more push ups than your initial test.

If you managed 16-20 push ups in the latest test, follow column 1.
If you completed between 21 & 25, column 2 is for you.
More than 25 consecutive push ups? Excellent! You'll be following column 3.
If you're struggling with the program, don't lose heart. Some people will still be
doing less than 16 consecutive push ups, but this is ok. Just repeat the week you
struggled with until you're strong enough to move on to the next level - I promise
it will be worth your while!
week 3: pick the appropriate column depending on your latest test results
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
16 -20 push ups

21 - 25 push ups

> 25 push ups

SET 1

10

12

14

SET 2

12

17

18

SET 3

13

14

SET 4

13

14

SET 5

max (at least 9)

max (at least 17)

max (at least 20)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 2
REST 90 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

10

14

20

SET 2

12

19

25

SET 3

14

15

SET 4

14

15

SET 5

max (at least 12)

max (at least 19)

max (at least 25)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3
REST 120 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

11

16

22

SET 2

13

21

30

SET 3

15

20

SET 4

15

20

SET 5

max (at least 13)

max (at least 21)

max (at least 28)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 3
Hopefully you made it safely through the third week and you're ready to move on
to Week 4. Keep up the great work - you're halfway through the program and
well on your way to performing one hundred consecutive push ups.
Let's continue with the program take a look at Week 4.

Week 4
Week 3 is now comfortably behind you and it's time to start Week 4. Continue by
following the same column of exercises as you did last week.
At the end of Week 4 it will be time to perform another exhaustion test. You
should know what to do by now - simply perform as many good-form push ups as
you can comfortably manage before you're unable to perform another one. As per
the end of Week 2, stress your system by all means, but please don't go beyond
the safety limit.
The number of push ups you complete will determine which level of the program
you'll start in Week 5. Make sure you perform this test within a couple of days of
completing Week 4.
week 4: pick the same column as you did in week 3
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
16 -20 push ups

21 - 25 push ups

> 25 push ups

SET 1

12

18

21

SET 2

14

22

25

SET 3

11

16

21

SET 4

10

16

21

SET 5

max (at least 16)

max (at least 25)

max (at least 32)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 2
REST 90 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

14

20

25

SET 2

16

25

29

SET 3

12

20

25

SET 4

12

20

25

SET 5

max (at least 18)

max (at least 28)

max (at least 36)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3

REST 120 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)


SET 1

16

23

29

SET 2

18

28

33

SET 3

13

23

29

SET 4

13

23

29

SET 5

max (at least 20)

max (at least 33)

max (at least 40)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 4
Ok, time for another exhaustion test. You should be feeling much stronger now
than your initial test 4 weeks ago. Make a note of how many push ups you
complete, and move on to Week 5.

week 5
Depending on the results of your latest test, continue with an appropriate week
and column, even if it means you have to complete Week 3 or Week 4 again.
If you managed 31 - 35 push ups, follow column 1.
If you completed between 36 & 40, column 2 is for you.
More than 40 consecutive push ups? Great work! You'll be following column 3.
week 5: pick the appropriate column depending on your latest test results
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
31 - 35 push ups

36 - 40 push ups

> 40 push ups

SET 1

17

28

36

SET 2

19

35

40

SET 3

15

25

30

SET 4

15

22

24

SET 5

max (at least 20)

max (at least 35)

max (at least 40)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 2
REST 45 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

10

18

19

SET 2

10

18

19

SET 3

13

20

22

SET 4

13

20

22

SET 5

10

14

18

SET 6

10

14

18

SET 7

16

22

SET 8

max (at least 25)

max (at least 40)

max (at least 45)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3

REST 45 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)


SET 1

13

18

20

SET 2

13

18

20

SET 3

15

20

24

SET 4

15

20

24

SET 5

12

17

20

SET 6

12

17

20

SET 7

10

20

22

SET 8

max (at least 30)

max (at least 45)

max (at least 50)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 5
Surprise, surprise, it's time for another exhaustion test. Week 5 was a tough one,
and if you've made it this far, you're getting close to reaching your goal. If you're
able to perform more than 45 consecutive push ups, feel free to move on
to Week 6. Couldn't quite manage 45? No problem, just repeat the week and you
should be ready to go after another three workout days. Good luck!

Week 6
Depending on the results of your latest test, continue with an appropriate week
and column, even if it means you have to complete Week 5 again.
If you managed 46 - 50 push ups, follow column 1.
If you completed between 51 & 60, column 2 is for you.
More than 60 consecutive push ups? Tremendous! You'll be following column 3.
week 6: pick the appropriate column depending on your latest test results
DAY 1
REST 60 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
46 - 50 push ups

51 - 60 push ups

> 60 push ups

SET 1

25

40

45

SET 2

30

50

55

SET 3

20

25

35

SET 4

15

25

30

SET 5

max (at least 40)

max (at least 50)

max (at least 55)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 2
REST 45 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

14

20

22

SET 2

14

20

22

SET 3

15

23

30

SET 4

15

23

30

SET 5

14

20

24

SET 6

14

20

24

SET 7

10

18

18

SET 8

10

18

18

SET 9

max (at least 44)

max (at least 53)

max (at least 58)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

DAY 3
REST 45 SECONDS BETWEEN EACH SET (LONGER IF REQUIRED)
SET 1

13

22

26

SET 2

13

22

26

SET 3

17

30

33

SET 4

17

30

33

SET 5

16

25

26

SET 6

16

25

26

SET 7

14

18

22

SET 8

14

18

22

SET 9

max (at least 50)

max (at least 55)

max (at least 60)

COMPLETED THIS WORKOUT? GO LOG IT AT PUSH UPS LOGGER!

PRINT WEEK 6
Well? Did you make it through Week 6? If you did; congratulations - you should
be very proud of your achievements and ready for one final test.
If you struggled with Week 6 (many people do), no problem, just repeat the
appropriate week and try again. Maybe an extra couple of days rest will benefit
you?

Final test
If you're reading this page you should be very proud of your achievements and
ready for one final test. As you're well aware, the program you've been following
is called One Hundred Push Ups and that's what this final test is all about.
To perform the test, simply execute as many good-form push ups as you can. If
you've completed the six week program with no cheating and no short cuts,
experience has shown that you should be strong enough to perform one hundred
consecutive push ups!
After completing Week 6 of the program, treat yourself to a day or two of rest.
Eat well and maintain good hydration. Try not to perform any exercises or tasks
around the home that will drain you of energy - you'll need every ounce of
strength to meet your goal. Ready?
Take your time, don't rush and focus on performing ten push ups at a time.
Breaking the magic hundred into smaller chunks will make the goal more
achievable and give you more chance of success. Maintain good form and don't
hold your breath. It sounds simple, but just take it one push up at a time until
you reach one hundred! If you start to feel shaky, take a few deep breaths and
regain your composure before starting again. Good luck - I know you can do it!!
Just in case you didn't manage the hundred, I would suggest going back a couple
of weeks in the program and building up your strength again. Maybe Week
5 orWeek 6 would be good for you and help regain your confidence? Don't give
up though, you're closer than you think!

What's next?
So, youve successfully completed one hundred consecutive push-ups, and
naturally youre feeling pretty pleased with yourself. Nothing wrong with that;
youve worked very hard to achieve the goal!
I would also hazard a guess that you have noticed some pretty significant
changes to your body your chest will be more defined, shoulders broader and
arms toned and hard. Your abdominal muscles should be firmer, posture more
upright and your energy level higher.
The amazing thing is, you are just getting started. Think what you will be able to
accomplish with regular, long-term exercise if you can achieve so much in as little
as six weeks of doing push-ups.
Some people will be happy to have conquered the challenge and be content to
find some other program to follow. This is completely fine, as variety of exercise
will keep individuals motivated for longer periods. Why not look around for a
basic weight training plan, or new aerobic activity to try out? Train for your first
5k, take up yoga or join a local swimming club. The possibilities are endless, but
hopefully you now have the confidence and base fitness to tackle almost
anything.
Others, not content with doing one hundred push-ups, will strive to reach 150,
200 or even more. For you people, I recommend restarting the main training plan
and following along as you did the first time around. The only difference should
be to increase the maximum set at the end of each workout. Not only will this
help maintain your current fitness level, but it will maximize your strength gains
and take you to new heights. The sky is the limit if you keep challenging yourself!
Finally, if youre looking for more variety, and are keen to hone in on your muscle
development, it would be worthwhile to tackle the hundred push-ups program
performing advanced push-up variations that will really provide a challenge. For
example, choose wide or diamond push-ups to target chest development, or onearmed push-ups to develop strong forearms and chiseled triceps.
The main thing is to keep exercise fun and change up the routine every couple of
months. Typically, after 6-8 weeks, your body will have made all the adaptations
it is going to make from that particular plan. You will need to shock the system
to keep making improvements and strength gains. Also, it is always wise to take
a week or so of complete rest every 2-3 months - there is nothing like a short
break to recharge yourself both mentally and physically.