Saturday, February 4, 2012

Pushups are the Ultimate Fitness Test

Alright, there isn’t much health news out this weekend, so I figure I’ll talk about something on my mind.

Did anyone else see this?! (I think it is from Thursday)

Pretty funny, right? And pretty impressive. I hope I am in that good of shape in 25 years!

I decided to see if I could find how they shaped up to average women, and I succeeded in finding this pushup test calculator online, which tells you how you compare to others. Both the First Lady & Ellen are way ahead of their class.

I also found this really interesting article from The New York Times about how pushups can tell a lot about your health. The exercise requires you to use all of your muscles at once, to lift your body weight, which is hard for even fit people. The article says that being able to do at least one pushup is also important for seniors, who are more prone to falling; when you fall, your body naturally attempts to catch itself in pushup form. Oh, and, on average, a 40-year-old woman can do 16 pushups, the article states.
James actually tested how many pushups he could do today (a little stir-crazy from all the thesis writing, maybe). He did 70 in a row, without warming up or trying particularly hard. He is 30 above the average for his age, according to that calculator.

To celebrate my pushup inspired week, I did pushups after my track workout today.
I’ll share my workout deets, as part of
Sweat it out sat button

I ran about 1.5 miles to a track, ran a warm-up lap, then ran 1x1600, 1x800, 1x400, 1x200, 1x100 (then came back up) 1x100, 1x200, 1x400, 1x800, 1x1600, then ran a cooldown lap, then ran 1.5 miles home. My pace on the w/u and c/d was about 9:30, for the miles it was about 7:55, and all the way down to 40-45 second 100s.

I got home and did kettle bell swings (50X2) reverse pull ups (start at the top & slowly come down, 2X10) and push ups (3X15).

I can do about 25 “real” pushups in a row, I think. All I know is, since starting P90X and Insanity, I have seen how much better I feel when I do strength training. Pushups (different forms of these, and planks), I think, are one of the most crucial exercises to building fitness.

How many pushups you can do? If you don't know, try it out! All it takes is a floor and your body!
Do you LIKE doing pushups? 
Do you think that pushups are as important as the article makes them out to be?


  1. Very interesting article about push-ups! I used to not even be able to do one pushup, but now I can do several real pushups. I'm actually in bed at the moment, but I'm definitely going to see where I stack up tomorrow!

    Both p90x and insanity have definitely helped me gain more strength!

    Thanks for linking up for Sweat it Out Saturday!! :)

    1. Hi Stefanie! Thanks for reading! I, also, used to only be able to do very few pushups. That was when I was mostly running and not doing anything else. Don't you love workout programs like those two, that make you incorporate lifting? It makes me feel so much better! Have a great day!

  2. Haha I cant do that many push ups right now.. but I'm working one it! :D

    1. Thanks for reading! They are hard, right?! Well, keep working. I know I only was able to do more after I made myself consistently try. Have a good week!

  3. I hate pushups but I'm better at them than I used to be... I can do them on my toes as long as I'm "fresh" (i.e. getting back to the gym after a rest day or right at the beginning of a workout) but they're still a struggle... but, like they say, the exercise you struggle with most is the one you should be doing!

    1. Oh, I so know what you are saying. If my arms are sore or if I'm really tired, there is no way I can do pushups. ... and, I don't know, if you hate them, there are probably other things to do. No sense in not having fun when you are working out, right? Thank you for reading! I have to add you to my blogroll..