Common Questions

Man doing pushups with woman counting

To help you gain the most from the hundred pushups program, I’ve assembled a list of answers to some of the most commonly asked questions, covering topics such as correct form, workout frequency, weight loss, rest/recovery and more.

Can I do pushups every day instead of following the three-day-a-week plan?

No. It is very important to allow your body time to recover from the intense daily workouts. Muscle tissue is broken down during exercise but will rebuild itself during periods of rest and recovery. Working the muscles on consecutive days will hamper the rebuilding process and limit your progress. Remember, the body needs 48 hours to recover and adapt to the stress of strength training.

I’ve reached a plateau and can’t do any more pushups? What happened?

After making impressive strength gains early on in the program, occasionally your body will take a while to "catch up." Stick with the plan, trust in the numbers and you’ll soon be on your way to doing 100 pushups. Also, ensure you breathe correctly during the workout. Holding your breath inhibits your ability to perform "good-form" pushups and should be avoided.

My wrists hurt doing the pushups. What should I do?

Try closing your hands and making a fist to perform the pushups. This way your body weight ends up on your knuckles instead of your palms, thus avoiding the wrist extension motion. Please be sure to do this type of pushup on a padded mat, plush carpet or, even better, a folded towel.

Should my chest touch the floor on the down phase of the pushup?

Good form should put your chest within an inch or two of the floor. There is no specific need to touch the floor with your chest, but aim to form a 90-degree angle at your elbow joint.

How fast should I do the pushups?

Pushups should be performed in a slow, deliberate manner. Rather than bouncing up and down, it’s important to maintain full control as you lower and raise your body. As a rough guide, each phase—both up and down—of a single pushup should take a couple of seconds.

What is the correct method for breathing during pushups?

It’s important to breathe in during the descent and breathe out on the ascent. Make sure you don’t hold your breath and make every effort to breathe rhythmically throughout the exercise.

What is the correct head position?

Your head should be held in a neutral position— that is, not looking forward, up or down at your navel. Traditional army pushups have you looking forward, but in my opinion this puts too much strain on your neck muscles.

Can I pause between pushups if I begin to tire?

Pausing for a short period of time to regain your composure is allowed, but make sure you rest in the "up" position. Do not lock your elbows, raise your butt or allow your elbows to rest on the ground for assistance.

Will I lose weight if I follow the hundred pushups plan?

Pushups alone will burn some calories and do help increase muscle mass to some degree, which in turn takes more calories to maintain. However, pushups by themselves are not the best way to lose weight - you really need to add an effective cardio training program to any type of strength-training plan if your main goal is weight loss.

My son/daughter is keen to take the challenge. Is the program safe for teenagers?

Absolutely! Actually, teenagers are very receptive to strength training and will make excellent progress by following the plan. However, please make sure your son/daughter is in good health and, if there are any doubts regarding their fitness, please seek medical advice before starting the challenge.

Feel free to drop me a line if you have more questions about the Hundred Pushups plan.