I tried and tried. I struggled. What looks so easy, for me was super hard. I made being able to do them a goal. As my strength improved, I wrote about the progress I saw in doing them: Five and Ten. It was exciting to see real progress. Eventually they became so easy that I stopped doing them, except as part of a HIIT routine. When I hurt my shoulder, I was under strict orders to not do them until after my shoulder healed.
Since that time, being able to do push-ups well and "easily" has plagued me. So after my back injury last February, I made it a goal to improve upon them again. But it has been difficult. In May of last year, I was able to do three sets of 15 push-ups. So hard! I mean super hard. It wasn't so much doing them as the weakness in my shoulder. Not for nothing, when things are hard, you tend to shy away from doing them. Why do I want to do this if it's this hard?
When I started training with Pat, he had me doing three sets of 15-20 push-ups. I was like, "I'm not going to be able to do that. I can barely do 10 push-ups and you want me to do 15?" He said, "If you can do a Dumb-Bell bench press with 25 lbs., you can do 15 push-ups."
I hated doing them. Unlike three years ago when doing push-ups motivated me, this time around, I was not enthused.
Then the next three weeks, he changed it up and had me doing four sets of 12-15 reps. I always tried for the 15, but four sets was a lot.
This week, he changed it up again. When I looked at the plan for this week, it changed from 4 sets of 12-15 to FIVE sets of 20 push-ups. That's 100 push-ups. Are you KIDDING ME???
So when I saw him this week, I said, "What in the world are you thinking?"
He said, "You can do it." Confident as can be, like it's no problem.
I was like, "I can't do that! There's just no way."
He said, "Yes you can. Easy."
I said, "Well, I can't do five sets of 20 push-ups all together like that. It's just not going to happen. I mean, maybe I can do them if I work them throughout the entire workout. One set after each group of exercises, but not all at once."
His response, "I don't care how you do them, just get them done."
Get them done? Doesn't he know I have a shoulder injury? Doesn't he know these are super hard for me? What does he mean, "Just get them done."
And so Friday night was the moment of truth. 100 push-ups. Five sets of twenty.
We get to the gym, I figure, let's get the first set done now and just see, while I'm feeling strong, how I do. Is 20 even on the table? (Great way to think positive, isn't it?)
And I do it. 20 push-ups. No problem.
I decided to do 20 at a time, throughout my workout, allowing my shoulder/ body to recover before attempting the next set. And it worked! Twice I had to take a 10 second break in between to finish the 20 reps, but I did all 100!
Here is my last set:
So, what's the point of this whole post? Overcoming the way you think and feel about food, about exercise, about yourself: your self-image, your abilities, your potential... This is so key to your success. Over four years into this journey and I still struggle. I have doubts. While they may be based on reality (I do have tendinitis in my shoulder, there is weakness there, I do continue to have pain), the fact is I can do more than I believe I can do.
I did 100 push-ups. Not five or ten like I did three years ago. One-Hundred. I didn't think I could. I thought Pat was crazy. I was even miffed with him a little. It wasn't clean, it wasn't perfect, but I did it!
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"Why Have a Trainer?" is a topic I discussed in January. Having someone push you beyond your own self-expectations, to basically say, "It's no big deal, you can do it." THIS is why I have a trainer. I struggled with one health issue after another over the past 18+ months and tried to figure out how to get back on the path by myself. Every set-back and every self-doubt left me feeling badly about myself and where I was going. Not really knowing what to do to get things back on track left me frustrated, which is WHY I sought out Pat. He is really awesome.
If you are thinking about having a trainer, you definitely want to check him out. The rates are affordable and he is amazing. If you live in the area, you can train one-on-one with him. If not, he does online coaching as well. Check out his website for the details: Patriotbody.com. I cannot say enough about him. Training with Pat means you will see growth, you will make change, you will accomplish your goals. Either way, check out his website. There is contact information for him there.
There's a saying out there, "Put on some gangster rap and get over it." Here's the newest song on my playlist:
Not Afraid by EminemAnd I just can't keep living this way. So starting today, I'm breaking out of this cage. I'm standing up, I'mma face my demons. I'm manning up, I'mma hold my ground. I've had enough, now I'm so fed up. Time to put my life back together right now!
Question for you: (Answer in the comment section below.)
What holds you back?
What holds you back?
My new mantra: Be the Champion of Today!
Have a great weekend! Go get 'em!