This was a test relating to the initial conditions – or structure of a challenge. I said I could 1000 strict push ups, as I had been working on strategy structures.
A friend called “Booshet”.
On review of the conditions specified – it seemed clear that the 1000 reps could be done midnight to midnight.
Theory – Doing less then 35% of max reps in any set allows massive increase in total work. This means if can do 30 push ups as my max in one set (ie 30 in a row), then for this test I should do a max of 11 pushups in any one set.
Once this number is set, then allow reasonable time between sets. AND if completion of any set becomes difficult, immediately reduce the number of reps in the set. AND increase the time between sets to allow more recovery.
Eg if it gets hard at only 8 push ups of an 11 rep set – then stop, In the next set do 5 reps only. The goal is not to allow fatigue, to do it “EASY”. There is insufficient time to recover from any set done HARD.
I began with sets of 15 based on a 43 maximum rep set done earlier in the week. I allowed a time between sets of 9 minutes.
After 300 push ups, I dropped back to 12 reps per set. And after 750 down to 6 reps. I could have done a higher number – but avoiding fatigue was the key element.
At the end, I could have done more push ups – but was starting to feel some joint pain in my left elbow and was favoring it. I also had developed blisters on the soles of my toes and top of upper parts of my feet. (think about it – half your weight in a pushup is on your upper feet! Wear shoes!)
This test shows that if actions are broken down to do-able steps – a ridiculous goal can be achieved. I also believe that there are some metabolic advantages to this kind of training.
Maybe total GH produced from tiny challenges many times with no recovery time needed, is greater than more intense training with longer recovery times, over the course of a week.
Anyway – 1000 push ups ☑ I wonder if I want to do 5000 push ups in a week? Hmmm.
Ps – the lessons:
1. If the theory is wrong – trying harder will still not allow success. If I had just done as many pushups as possible, then rested, then did as many as I could, then rested – and so on – I would NOT have reached 1000 pushups in a day. How does this relate to YOUR business model? If your results do not improve when you “work harder” – look to your business model first.
2. Things that may at first seem impossible may not be – eg a 50+ slightly podgey male who has been slack in training able to do 1000 pushups in a day? Without the profound knowledge about the effects of muscle failure and recovery – I would not have been able to do this. I would have bet against me completing the challenge.
3. Recognize constraints. Then create systems and processes that allow the best results. Will power cannot get you off the floor when your muscles are completely shot. Will power has a finite effect.
Townsville based James Hooper: The term "rainmaker" is becoming regularly used in business context as someone whose role is to 'make rain' or 'create growth' in your business. In some senses the term 'business coach' is limiting as it is primarily about optimizing the effectiveness of the owner/operator. Sometimes the leverage is in the business systems rather than in the operator - and focus on that produces the preferred outcomes. Business is a game, a puzzle, a tool to get you what you want in life. Call me for a second opinion (other than yours) on how to make your business give you what you want it to.