Why am I so terrible at doing push-ups?

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  1. #1
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    Why am I so terrible at doing push-ups?

    So I have been wondering recently why I am so bad at doing pushups. I can only do about 20 pushups before I am dead tired. I can bench 190 for sets of 8 reps. I know that is not impressive but, I know other guys that can get down and bust out 40-50 pushups yet they don't bench as much as me. It is weird too because people always comment on how great my pushup form is up to around 15 and then my form starts going out of wack and i just get tired.

    I know this isn't really important in anyway, but still, I dislike it when people say something to me like "how many pushups can you do" and I have to say a low number like 20. I train with a crew team (but I don't compete with them) and today they had people doing 40 pushups at a time and I was not pleased at how poorly I performed compared to them.

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    whats your weight man? Push ups have a lot to do with your strength relative to your body weight. After all push ups are a body weight exercise right? If you want to do more; 1) keep doing push ups and 2) work on building your push muscles (ie chest, shoulders, triceps)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elson View Post
    whats your weight man? Push ups have a lot to do with your strength relative to your body weight. After all push ups are a body weight exercise right? If you want to do more; 1) keep doing push ups and 2) work on building your push muscles (ie chest, shoulders, triceps)
    My weight fluctuated between 185-190 constantly. I am 6'0 tall. My body fat is around 12% (give or take a perfect for measuring inaccuracies). Is there a # percent of your body weight you can expect to be pushing while doing a pushup?

    I do train my pushing muscles pretty well right now. I have a pretty solid push/pull 4 day split set up based on the article written by built.

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    you just dont have as much stamina as everyone else =\ i used to be able to do about 20 pushup's and then i lost 90 pounds and now i can do about 40-50 elevated pushups, i weigh exactly as much as you do but im 3 inches taller. maybe your just training to hard on low reps, but what does it matter? are you trying to get cut-up? well you should try benching with about 140-150 pounds if what your trying to get up is push-up's or just do push-up's instead of bench-press
    6'2 - 198 pounds | 20yrs old
    BF% - 12% (9/15/2010)
    Chest- 46" | Biceps- 15.4" | Waist- 32"

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    Muscular strength and muscular endurance are two very different things. Just because you are strong on lower reps doesnt mean you will automatically be able to handle higher volume.

    20 Pushups is fine. 190 x 8 is a decent weight, dont worry about it.

    The best way to get better at pushups is to do more pushups. If its that much of a concern, do pushups more often!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazhole View Post
    Muscular strength and muscular endurance are two very different things. Just because you are strong on lower reps doesnt mean you will automatically be able to handle higher volume.

    20 Pushups is fine. 190 x 8 is a decent weight, dont worry about it.

    The best way to get better at pushups is to do more pushups. If its that much of a concern, do pushups more often!
    Do you think it would be alright for me to start doing more pushups and keep my current routine. I always get scared of overtraining and breaking down muscle instead of building. I only directly hit my chest once a week but it is hit in a lot of other things as I do indirectly.

    Is there any way to work on building muscular strength and endurance at the same time? I want to improve my endurance but I would also like to see my strength continue to go up. I figure it is probably pretty hard to do both but I thought I would ask anyway.

    it is frustrating because I can do just as many elevated pushups as I can regular ones, and elevated pushups are supposed to be more difficult (or so I hear). Sometimes for fun when I want to hit my core as well I will put my feet on a stability ball and each hand on a medicine ball and do pushups in that position, focused really hard on have a slow decline and keeping my core tight. Most people I know cannot do that, but yet, they can do more regular pushups than me

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    bro really to get better with push ups you just got to keep doing them. do them everyday for for 1 more than last time every 3rd time you do them. them when you cant do anymore drop your knees to the ground and pump out some more. then when you get diesant at them try the perfect pushups to get a good burn with less pushups

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    Quote Originally Posted by workhard1 View Post
    Do you think it would be alright for me to start doing more pushups and keep my current routine. I always get scared of overtraining and breaking down muscle instead of building. I only directly hit my chest once a week but it is hit in a lot of other things as I do indirectly.

    Is there any way to work on building muscular strength and endurance at the same time? I want to improve my endurance but I would also like to see my strength continue to go up. I figure it is probably pretty hard to do both but I thought I would ask anyway.

    it is frustrating because I can do just as many elevated pushups as I can regular ones, and elevated pushups are supposed to be more difficult (or so I hear). Sometimes for fun when I want to hit my core as well I will put my feet on a stability ball and each hand on a medicine ball and do pushups in that position, focused really hard on have a slow decline and keeping my core tight. Most people I know cannot do that, but yet, they can do more regular pushups than me
    You can work both at the same time, but honeslty bud why the hell do you care so much about push-ups?

    What is your routine at the minute?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moondogg View Post
    You can work both at the same time, but honeslty bud why the hell do you care so much about push-ups?

    What is your routine at the minute?

    I honestly cannot tell you why I care so much about pushups. I guess I just don't like doing less than all these other people that are not as muscular as I am. I am not huge or totally jacked or anything, but I have a pretty decent build and I know people that are just skinny and you cannot even tell they really workout that do more pushups than me. My training looks like this now

    Monday: Horizontal Plane: (Back/Chest)
    T-bar rows- 5x5 (use lots of weight, form not important)
    Seated Single Arm Cable rows – 3x10
    Flat barbell Bench Press- 4x6 (low rep, heavy weight)
    Low incline DB press- 3x8
    Elevated pushups- 3x10
    Standing Calf raises (single leg) – 3x10
    Decline sit-ups (weighted)- 3x20


    Tuesday: Quad Dominant Leg and Bicep day
    Squats- 5x5 (low reps, heavy weight)
    Quad Extension- 3x10
    Leg press- 3x8
    Stability Ball leg curl- 3x30
    Standing DB curl- (set 1- 8 reps, Set 2- 7 reps, set 3- 6 reps)
    20 Minutes HIIT Cardio (6 minutes of sprints, 14 of Steady State Cardio)

    Wednesday: OFF
    Thursday: Vertical Push: (Back/Shoulders) High Carb/Calorie
    Pull ups- 5x5 (weighted) If they get too hard, do negatives
    Lat pull downs- 3x10
    Push Press- 3x6
    Arnold Press- 3x10
    Seated Calf Raises- 3x12 (3 second hold at the bottom)
    Decline Sit ups- 3x20 (weighted)
    Planks- Left side 1:30, Right side 1:30, front 1:30 (3 sets)
    20 Minutes HIIT Cardio (6 minutes of sprints, 14 SS cardio)

    Friday: Hamstring dominant, Quad accessory, triceps High Carb/Calorie
    RDL’s- 4x6
    GHR’s- 3x8
    Bulgarian (it might be Hungarian?) Squats- 3x8
    Dips (weighted)- 3x8
    cable pressdown- 3x10

    Saturday: off
    Sunday: off


    I usually lift around 4 in the afternoon but I also get up at 6:00 AM every morning to join the crew team for their cardio sessions. Which usually include a lot of stairs and indian sprints

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    Quote Originally Posted by workhard1 View Post
    I honestly cannot tell you why I care so much about pushups. I guess I just don't like doing less than all these other people that are not as muscular as I am. I am not huge or totally jacked or anything, but I have a pretty decent build and I know people that are just skinny and you cannot even tell they really workout that do more pushups than me. My training looks like this now

    Monday: Horizontal Plane: (Back/Chest)
    T-bar rows- 5x5 (use lots of weight, form not important) lower the weight so you can have better form.
    Seated Single Arm Cable rows – 3x10
    Flat barbell Bench Press- 4x6 (low rep, heavy weight)
    Low incline DB press- 3x8
    Elevated pushups- 3x10
    Standing Calf raises (single leg) – 3x10
    Decline sit-ups (weighted)- 3x20 crunches work better, lower reps i.e. 8-10


    Tuesday: Quad Dominant Leg and Bicep day
    Squats- 5x5 (low reps, heavy weight) hows the form on these?
    Quad Extension- 3x10 i dont like these, put too much stress on the knee, try lunges/walking lunges instead
    Leg press- 3x8 i still do leg press sometimes, but you should give front squats a go, takes some time to get the form right though
    Stability Ball leg curl- 3x30
    Standing DB curl- (set 1- 8 reps, Set 2- 7 reps, set 3- 6 reps)
    20 Minutes HIIT Cardio (6 minutes of sprints, 14 of Steady State Cardio)

    Wednesday: OFF
    Thursday: Vertical Push: (Back/Shoulders) High Carb/Calorie
    Pull ups- 5x5 (weighted) If they get too hard, do negatives
    Lat pull downs- 3x10 try these uni-laterial, one arm at a time
    Push Press- 3x6
    Arnold Press- 3x10
    Seated Calf Raises- 3x12 (3 second hold at the bottom)
    Decline Sit ups- 3x20 (weighted)
    Planks- Left side 1:30, Right side 1:30, front 1:30 (3 sets)
    20 Minutes HIIT Cardio (6 minutes of sprints, 14 SS cardio)

    Friday: Hamstring dominant, Quad accessory, triceps High Carb/Calorie
    RDL’s- 4x6
    GHR’s- 3x8
    Bulgarian (it might be Hungarian?) Squats- 3x8 its bulgarian, dont know much about them as ive never done them before, but thinking about giving them a try
    Dips (weighted)- 3x8
    cable pressdown- 3x10

    Saturday: off
    Sunday: off


    I usually lift around 4 in the afternoon but I also get up at 6:00 AM every morning to join the crew team for their cardio sessions. Which usually include a lot of stairs and indian sprints

    If you training cardio every morning, it might not be a good idea to do cardio two days a week after lifting as well. That would be 9 cardio sessions and 4 lifting sessions a week...could quite easily lead to overtraining.

    I dont know how much my points above will improve you push count, but theyshould help to improve your routine.

  11. #11
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    Basically what everyone else has said do more push ups!
    Muscle endurance is what really is required here so you would have to start doing higher reps to get your muscles use to higher reps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ben dur View Post
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    I do pushups in sets like 50 20 20 10.

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    Quote Originally Posted by workhard1 View Post
    Do you think it would be alright for me to start doing more pushups and keep my current routine. I always get scared of overtraining and breaking down muscle instead of building. I only directly hit my chest once a week but it is hit in a lot of other things as I do indirectly.

    This is a excuse correct? Let me ask you what excersice hits your chest indirectly besides maybe working out shoulders (which is a pushing movement). I am willing to bet your not putting full intensity on your pushing workouts, and are looking for a quick fix. You my friend need to suck it up, start pushing that weight with FULL INTENSITY!!!!!!!!!!! overtraining its overrated. Usually a excuse not to work out hard.
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