Getting Buff

So I started thinking about how, when I have foot surgery, I’m not going to be able to put weight on my foot for a while.  I went to the YMCA and asked if there were any cardio machines I could use that don’t require me to put weight on my feet.  One of the trainers showed me a machine that’s meant to be used with both arms and legs, but you can do all the work with the arms and just rest the feet on the footpads.  My father-in-law also mentioned that I could use the weight machines and keep the weight low and do a lot of reps.  I hadn’t thought of that.

I’ve also been thinking about how I’m going to be on crutches for a while.  I’m not sure how long.  It seems that I read or heard somewhere that I might have to be off my foot for four weeks, but then other stuff I’ve read says that some people can be walking in their boot within a week after surgery.  I will have to ask my doctor when I go for my appointment in August.  Anyway, I realized that my noodle arms aren’t going to do very well at managing crutches for even a week, so I decided to start doing push-ups.  There is a website called One Hundred Push Ups that has a training plan to get you to work up to (big surprise) one hundred push-ups.  I can’t keep good form doing standard push-ups, so I’m starting with what are often called “girl push-ups” but which are more appropriately called “knee push-ups.”  (You do them with your knees on the floor, rather than extending your legs and doing to the push-ups from your hands and toes.)  One thing I really like about the site is that there is no shame in starting where you are.  If you have to start with knee push-ups, no problem.  If you aren’t strong enough for that yet, do your push-ups against a wall.

The site has a six-week plan to get to one hundred push-ups, but it encourages you to take whatever pace you need.  If week three is tough for you, repeat the week and don’t strain yourself.  The plan calls for four sets of push-ups (specific numbers of repetitions are given for whatever level and stage you are at in the program) three days a week.  I just finished day three of week two.  It was tough, but I think I’m okay to continue to week three and not have to repeat week two.

After I finish the program with knee push-ups, I’d like to start over and do the whole thing with standard push-ups.  I’m realizing, though, that standard push-ups also require a lot of core strength in addition to upper body strength.  Good thing I’m taking Pilates, but I might need to start doing that more than just once a week, too.

But mainly, I just want to get myself strong enough so that my arms will be up for the task of transporting me on crutches when I can’t use my foot.

Does anyone want to join me in the One Hundred Push Ups program?  I need all the encouragement I can get!

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. merry
    May 07, 2010 @ 09:20:01

    I’ll have to look into that! I love the idea of building upper body strength, and I think it’s great for you to work on that as you prep for surgery. My MIL had to be off her foot for 6 weeks after her bunion surgery, FYI.

  2. dolores
    May 07, 2010 @ 09:57:16

    I was never able to do push ups but always had the desire just to say I could. Want to send me the web address?

  3. Jon Hoyt
    May 07, 2010 @ 10:31:00

    Count me in. Keep eachother accountable over facebook? email? twitter?

  4. riTa
    May 07, 2010 @ 10:52:47

    I’m up to 15 or 20 of the table push-ups in my senior exercise class. We meet two more times, then the leaders, TU students leave. Maybe after that I ought to take up your challenge!

  5. merry
    May 10, 2010 @ 11:14:16

    We discussed this and decided to do the program as a family. Then I spent the next two days stripping wallpaper in preparation for painting this weekend and decided that the remodeling project provides enough of an upper body workout for the next couple weeks. When we’re done with our kitchen, then I will start the 100 pushup plan 🙂

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