Push-ups seem to be pointless; they were the self-weight exercise that my lacrosse coach made us do for punishment. With all the pads and equipment lacrosse players have on, push-ups are one of the few movements players can handle, especially when you are twelve years old. As I got older, the resentment I held for that punishment lingered. It remained all throughout my time as a high school cross country runner and for some time after. (But let’s face it, pretty much all high school cross country runners didn’t see the point to it, as the goal was to run faster, not do more push-ups than someone else.) It was not until I served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints where I had be with my companion at all times. Being paired with very few runners, I had to figure out how to exercise around someone not of my fitness level. I had to think outside of my comfort level, and as a result, I started self weight exercises. At first, I began with doing push-ups, sit-ups, and using make-shift weights. The make-shift weights did not do too much, but the push-ups really paid off. I started with a few push-ups and I slowly increased the amount over time. Eventually, there were times during the day, that I could quickly fit in some push-ups. It gave me a small mental break and it got me motivated to keep going. When I told a good friend of my push-up routine and how I did about a thousand push-ups every day, he told me of football legend Herschel Walker Herschel Walker, did not have very much growing up, but he was a dedicated athlete and student. Walker would do push-ups and sit-ups at every commercial break as he watched television. Every week, he would increase the number of push-ups and sit-ups until he later performed three-hundred push-ups during that commercial break. He graduated valedictorian from his high school and became a College Football Hall of Fame-er. He refused lifting weights, not even for team practices. Instead, he continued the same regimen of push-ups and sit-ups. He maintained his regimen even while playing for various teams in the NFL. Everyone wanted to know his secret. He explained it all simply in this ESPN interview.
What does this mean for us? Simply, do push-ups as frequently as possible and increase your amount slowly. As you build on your strength, you get a little bit better at other sports too. Surprisingly, I got better at running when I did this. Starting a push-up routine 150518_PushUp_027For someone who rarely exercises, let alone does push-ups, a good place to start is about ten push-ups every fifteen minutes over the period of an hour. The following week, make it ten push-ups every fifteen minutes for two hours. The next week, fifteen push-ups every fifteen minutes for two hours. The following weeks, increase by five push-ups for each set over the course of two hours. After a while of doing this, you can increase the overall duration.   It is a simple workout routine and you can do it as you watch television. Try it out for a few weeks and see how you feel after that time. Comment below how it works out for you. It may be difficult, but it makes a huge difference in the long run. Just remember to keep you body straight while doing your push-ups for optimal results.