100 Days of Mantis Pushups

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by David, Jul 25, 2006.

  1. David

    David Mostly AFK, these days

    This is a report rather than a question, but comments are welcome.

    I've always been the class joke when it comes to mantis pushups. It took me 6 months before I could do one and my best ever was 11, several years ago. This year, I managed a best of 10. I'm a disgrace!

    Here's a clip showing two pushups -> http://www.tonglong.co.uk/mantis_press_up.html They're a bit untidy for demo purposes but the guy was knackered. It's nice to have a clip of it online.

    The Plan:
    So, I devised a remedial routine to help me out, and persevered with it to the end, through chest infections, hangovers, no sleep, and the body's demands for rest after hard classes. 100 days, every morning. 3 sets.

    I started by dividing my best (10...) in half and aiming for 3 sets of that, so 3x5. If I managed 3x5 for three straight days, the target was raised by one. 3x5 became 3x6.

    I got a new pb of 15 during the 100 days. Since then, I've managed 16 after doing handstand pushups and a pec workout for the hell of it. I hope to do better if I ever do rest up but I'm not bothered about it for now. I've attached a gif of the pushup chart I made. Hedgehog pushups is the proper name for mantis pushups, by the way...

    Chart analysis:
    There are two areas of performance degredation. The first was a 10 day chest infection, from which I recovered OK without stopping (oh, did I ever want to stop!). The second was when my target was 15. I turned up at class after not being there a few weeks and teacher had to test me after class with grinding arm. Getting up, doing 42 pushups, going to morning class and then getting tested like that was something I didn't recover properly from for the rest of the 100 days. I really needed 2 or 3 days total rest for my arms.

    Other Comments:
    Doing it was a real love/hate thing. Waking up was often a nightmare because I knew what I had to do when I got up. When my "score" was bad, I was depressed. Then again, there were so many plusses. My willpower grew, I have new muscles on the top/front of my shoulders as well as better definition all around there, the upper arms and back. And of course I got new personal-bests. Keeping the chart and graphing some stats proved to be very motivating - kept me going when I was trying to make excuses to miss a day or give up.

    I have a theory that anything you do for three months is you. Habits take three months to become habitual or to break. Your flesh and blood is replaced every three months. 100 days is 3 months and 10 days. I'm finding it hard not to do the pushups in the morning, now though I need to rest and change my training.


    PS I have decided on my next 100 day thing which is going to be lifting heavy wooden stakes for finger strength: "picking up the mountain" for "hard dragon claws". This will then open up the world of finger pushups, so far closed to me with my long slender fingers - another 100 day project hehe.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 25, 2006

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