Remember in April when I reported to the blogosphere that I was determined to lose the pretzel weight I had accumulated in Germany? Turns out that under the pretzel weight was the cheese weight that I took home as a souvenir from my life in the Netherlands. Warm weather, new shoes and my sister as motivation (or at least a bit of sisterly competition) helped me get the ball rolling, and I eventually saw and felt the results. The onset of summer months also brings more fruit and salads, and our departure from Europe helped me drastically reduce my cheese intake. Once you’ve tasted the bounty of the cheese truck, you can barely stand the blandness of American cheese on your palette. And you can’t afford, in good cheese conscience, to eat the delicious imported stuff.
So as I continue to battle the urge to eat poorly and move minimally, I always appreciate ways to change my routine. Truth be told, I can run a 5K for fun, do yoga for 90 minutes and dance madly for hours. But I’m not very strong. Don’t get me wrong, I will attack you like a crazed spider monkey with the strength of five crazed spider monkeys if you really want to challenge me physically, but when it comes to something like pull-ups or chin-ups…I can’t do any. None. And since well rounded fitness has to included, or so I’m told, endurance, flexibility AND strength, I’m going to take my muscular abilities up a notch. Or try to at least.
When I heard about the Hundred Push Ups challenge, I reacted with my favorite dismissive maneuver: eye rolling. Not possible. Or necessary. When would this ever come in handy? I have no G.I. Jane ambitions. When I mentioned it to Dave he said “You’re going to have a GIGANTIC chest!” And he said it with fear, because he meant pecs not breasts. But then I read some health forums and other reviews, and women all over are raging. Not only did they NOT become Pec-monsters, but they found their overall strength in their arms, shoulders and core increased dramatically. The toning went from chest to upper back to triceps (you know, Oprah flaps) to abs. AND they could do 100 push-ups in a row, which is an awesome party trick in my opinion.
After I read the reviews, saw some testimonials with ‘after’ pictures, and secretly ate some Red Vines (because I needed sustenance while thinking of this strenuous training) I decided to do the ‘initial test.’ The program is based on the result of your initial test, with varying levels of difficulty for different levels of fitness. Even though the website instructs that ‘alternative’ types of push-ups are acceptable, I’m all about shaming people into doing true push-ups if they are going to do this kind of challenge. And shamed I was when I realized that a REAL, knees off the ground, nose to the floor push up is HARD. Really effing hard. I am, in fact, so shamed that I can’t disclose my number but let’s just say…I have about 95 push-ups to go.
So…WHO’S WITH ME!?