T O P

I cannot do more than like 3 pushups before dying and I've been trying for so long. I've made sure my form is correct etc. Why are they so hard?

I cannot do more than like 3 pushups before dying and I've been trying for so long. I've made sure my form is correct etc. Why are they so hard?

zzzztheday

I started using the kitchen counter. Then coffee table. Finally on the ground. You can do this. I’m a skinny sixty some year old lady so I know you can do it too!


FrankTM26

I second this. Start at an elevation that is comfortable and gradually change as time goes on as they get easier.


whoknewbamboo

I third this because it's simple and effective. You will get stronger over time.


cea1990

Can confirm. Do the counter, then a chair, then the floor. Then if you really keep liking it, go the other way. Throw them feet on the chair, then the counter, then do handstands. You’ll be impressing yourself and your friends in no time. Source: my 90lb wife.


PierreLeB

This is basically the only advice you need coupled with perfect form… it’s all about the gradient scale. But to add a little, push-ups are a full body exercise so, they burn a lot of calories, like running does, and muscles are either being fed or being fed on… so make sure you increase your protein intake to allow for growth to occur, and add some carb and fat to fuel you through the push-ups. If not, you’ll be in your circle of pain for muuuuch longer than necessary. ~ naturally lanky 6’6” 220lbs guy with wayyy too fast a metabolism… 3500 minimum healthy calories per day or I lose weight.


Spritzingham

You can even do it against the wall and choose any angle. You’ll get better every time and it will surprise you how fast it is. Also doing knee push ups is much easier so maybe try that. Do the one that’s most difficult but doable and progress. You’ll get better quickly


shalb123

This helped me.I had difficulty pushing up from the ground, wall push ups helped a lot.


TheSpanxxx

Stairs are great for this too because you can gradually adjust using the last 3 stairs usually, depending in your height. Also, do them from your knees and reduce the weight you are lifting. It's OK. It takes time. Two other suggestions. 1. Do some planks in full arm extension mode like at the top of a pushup. This will start to strengthen the shoulders, arms, and core which help stabilize everything required to do a pushup. 2. Try to do some chair dips to start strengthening your triceps. You can vary the weight by how far you move your feet away from you. Just keep your arms in good form so you don't put extra stress on your shoulders. This is another one you can do on a coffee table, chairs, steps, counter. Good luck! You can do this!!


abbyrhode

Came here to suggest stairs as well! I find it better than a wall because you slip less and can position your hand/wrist better.


cies010

Incline is better than from the knees


incal

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GsVJsS6474


Userredux

Wanted to post this OP watch this vid ^^^^


ceruleanskies001

This is what helped me. Glad it was mentioned!


say_the_words

Our friend Hampton to the rescue. You can do it, and if you can’t yet that’s all right too.


AmlSeb

Expected brother hampton, got brother hampton


HeartLikeGasoline

For the win. I still do pushes on the counter and I have a decent bench press. My uncles got me into the habit when I was thirteen and it’s stuck with me.


fat_uncle_jubalon

God bless Uncle Magic. Also counter pushups


weaklingKobbold

Every time I loose at counter (strike) I did a push up. I was jacked.


Kaitensatsuma

Agreed. You need a foundation to build off of. If getting that foundation means doing push-aways from a wall or a kitchen counter then that's what it is, then go to your knees or doing planks, and then start with a 3x3 rep pattern. Don't rush, building strength takes time.


11cm-fibroid-lady

In other forums I see "sixty some year old ladies" saying their 'lives are behind them' as an explanation for throwing in the towel. I just want to say that I appreciate you for continuing to build your strength and mastering what you're interested in. Wishing you single arm, clap, pointer fingers and supermans well into the future. Ganbatte!


zzzztheday

Whoa! Thanks so much! I was inspired by this lady... she started at age 91! https://www.abcactionnews.com/news/region-hillsborough/100-year-old-tampa-grandma-sets-guinness-world-record-for-weight-lifting Also, I hate the idea that deterioration is inevitable. Of course loss of strength and muscle mass will happen, but I want to postpone that as long as possible.


11cm-fibroid-lady

This is awesome. Edith and her training buddy Carmen look great and they're having a good time. More power to them. Thanks for posting this link. :)


FuzzyComedian638

I learned in physical therapy school that most of the decline people attribute to aging is actually from inactivity. Such as sitting on the couch after work, for years on end. Anyone can gain strength, no matter your age. Its just that older people don't retain their strength like a younger person does. Which makes strengthening all the more important for the older person.


oddastronaut

Noice


p4nic

Stairs are great, too! Back in the day, using stairs I was able to get up to 5 one arm pushups on the ground eventually. Sadly, I'm the type that once I accomplish a goal (5 one arm pushups) I move on to other things and now I struggle for 5 normal pushups lol


agirlinsane

I’m 56 and you just motivated the hell out of me, thank you!


Hoth_Frost

You can also grab some light weight and vary up chest exercises with a press or fly. But be careful not to overtraining or under eat. I don't know how much you are running but if you are running daily and not hitting your calories for the day any other exercise will kick your ass.


pope_nefarious

This is the correct approach. It’s much easier to add 1 rep to 10, than to 3. When you get to 20 at an incline, change the angle, rinse and repeat.


nostrilrolls

If doing it on the ground is too hard, lower the load by putting your hands on an elevated surface and as you get better at doing elevated pushups, lower the height of the surface and eventually you'll be able to do it in the ground. If your goal is to increase pushup reps, you can also do what's called greasing the groove, which just means doing a few pushups regularly throughout the day to build up capacity. And yes, pushups are a compound movement and thus requires the recruitment of many muscles, not just the chest. Maintaining full body tension when doing pushups will feel hard at first, but is easier in the long run


jrockabilly

How is no one commenting on the fact that she's 17 and 98lbs? The first thing I would ask is her height because, unless she's shorter than 4'10", she's definitely underweight and no amount of better form of modified load will help her build muscle when her body may be starved. To OP: If you're under 4'10", then disregard the above portion of my comment and do as everyone else here is suggesting. However, if you're above 4'10", then please know that you're appearance doesn't define you and you are a beautiful human being whose self-worth isn't determined by others. Eating disorders are very dangerous (both short and long term) and require the help of a patient therapist with an expertise in eating disorders. Again, if you are below 4'10" (meaning your weight is normal for your height) then please disregard the eating disorder comments and I apologize for the suggestion. Good Luck!


zerocoal

It's also possible that she just has the bare minimum muscle needed to exist, considering all the troubles with push ups. One of my ex's was 5'6 and about 100lbs when we met and it was because she didn't have an ounce of usable muscle anywhere but her legs.


Coalesceinthedark

Hmm. There's definitely different body types where she could be healthy and much taller: my ex was a 100lb cheerleader at 5'4" and she could give me (6'1", 170lbs) piggyback rides, she didn't have visible abs or anything crazy. OP doesn't have the same musculature but there definitely are narrow girls out there


epicwisdom

You're completely overreacting. First of all, 5'1" and 98 lbs is considered within the normal range for BMI. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmicalc.htm Secondly, BMI is generalized, and being slightly underweight doesn't mean they have any other significant health issue or eating disorder.


reeeeeeee-0

I’m 5’2”. Very underweight yeah, it’s genetic. Lol I chug food all day why do people assume I have an eating disorder. I track my calories and all. I actually gained 7 pounds over the summer, I used to be 91 lbs at the beginning of the year. I don’t have allergies or any medical issues I just have always had trouble gaining weight


f33

This is not true at all. Girls with small frames can weigh this much and be fairly healthy for the most part.


jrockabilly

You're correct; she could definitely be healthy at her current weight, but in order for that to be true she would need to be under 4'10" in height. Generally speaking.


StrngThngs

This is key, if you can't do 8 or 10 push-ups on the ground, you should not try them on the ground. Do some leaning push-ups against the counter, or even use your knees and try to get in the range of 10 to 15 before you increase the difficulty. You need to build up endurance in those muscles, as well as strength.


kseit

My daughter was in the same situation, I told her to try and do 8 or 10 on the stairs. Like as your walking up some stairs just stop and lean forward and try at that level.. hope that makes sense.


Milking-Camels

Hybrid Calisthenics on youtube has a really good video on push up progressions. You start out on easier versions before you move on to harder ones. It has helped me a lot.


Joe1972

100% one of my all time favourite channels for exercises https://youtu.be/0GsVJsS6474


EstNoire

He is super down to earth and real af, definitely one of the top sources out there


berimbolosforsatan

If youre getting tired after one push up,regress to an easier version of the push up so you're able to get more volume in your push up workouts. Thatll be a lot better for your progress than doing such a low volume


destenlee

Yea, good idea. Try to do knee push ups or wall push ups to build the stamina/strength


BlanketsAndBlankets

One thing I haven't seen mentioned: you need to eat more. You can do all the pushups you want but if your body doesn't have enough calories and protein to build muscle, you won't get stronger. At all.


chipmunksocute

Seconded. You gotta eat OP, and probably at a surplus. Like some big hearty meals consistantly. Eating big is so key to getting stronger and you def have room to put on some pounds if you're 17 and under 100 lbs.


Acrobatic_Release_14

This. Women have far more trouble converting calories/protein to muscle and honestly diet matters a lot. Sometimes the difference in me crushing a fully set out workout or struggling to complete sets depends on what I've eaten that day.


Etzello

>Women have far more trouble converting calories/protein to muscle and honestly diet matters a lot. That's not actually true - I've read two systematic reviews now that suggest women increase strength and hypertrophy at the same rate as men both in terms of newbie gains and long term training. I hope you don't see this as arguing it's just kind of an old myth and I don't want women to come here and see this and be discouraged. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32218059/ Here is one of them but the other one I cannot find. What's funny is that according to this review, some studies found the rate of hypertrophy favouring women.


turnips8424

That study does say that in absolute terms, men’s hypertrophy and strength gains were greater, and only in relative terms do women gain at the same rate or more quickly. So yes, I don’t think it’s accurate to say women “have trouble” building muscle, but it is a slower process, in terms of absolute gains.


Trackerbait

women can grow muscle tissue juuuust fine on exercise and a healthy diet, after all they regularly produce entire new humans! They don't "bulk" easily, but from what I hear, neither do men unless they're very young and full of hormones. however it can take longer for women to learn upper body moves, especially moves invented by and for male athletes. The joint angles and weight distribution are different, and urban women often have weaker upper bodies to start with due to less sports and physical play, etc. So they are doing a harder task and that takes longer. Lots of women have no trouble "converting" food to muscle. At such a low bodyweight, OP's more likely problem is chronic undereating.


Etzello

>weaker upper bodies to start I agree entirely, the myth isn't unwarranted - they start with a smaller and weaker frame, it's simply the rate of hypertrophy that remains the same. I won't pretend I know how to tell a woman how to exercise so I'll leave that out but in other studies, it turns out that the rate of hypertrophy for all genders doesn't begin to slow down until the 50s and it's a gradual curve. Your won't instantaneously hit 50 and say "well that's it, had a good run, time to put my hypertrophy training to a halt" - there's also more and more evidence that higher protein diets highly reduce the rate of sarcopenia and there's talk about actually changing diet recommendations accordingly. This will prevent many seniors from dying due to a fall which is really really common, whether from the fall itself, or from falling and being unable to get up and never being found etc. Essentially, protein good


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Trackerbait

it's perfectly possible, see my other comment. However, adults that size are rare, and I'm betting your "strong" ex doesn't complain about lacking muscle and struggling to do 3 pushups.


pcyclopath

>Sometimes the difference in me crushing a fully set out workout or struggling to complete sets depends on what I've eaten that day. Soooo true. Not so sure about the gendered protein/calorie to muscle conversion tho


antiquemule

You should have a look at some of the climber girls on Youtube (Lary Arce, Jain Kim, Ashima Shiraishi, ...). They are almost all skinny and most of them can do one-armed pullups.


tentafill

Does anyone here believe in the "fasting strength" thing? I was told once to work out before eating that day (in the morning) because I would be stronger than if I'd eaten something before. It might have even been in the old RR? idk My experience varies


Acrobatic_Release_14

I personally don't. If I know I've got a particularly onerous session planned, I'll ensure to eat something prior. Nothing too heavy but something to provide me with fuel whilst I work out. It could be as simple as a protein shake and a banana.


monkeysentinel

I always train on an empty stomach and I seem to do OK. Not sure if i would get better results with a different approach, but exercising with food in my system makes me feel pretty bad real fast, especially when I'm doing cardio. For strength training, when I'm hungry I feel more balanced, flexible and yes those things make me feel stronger.


TripleCaffeine

I'm fine working out pre food early in the day, but I have to eat to have top line strength later on e.g. early evening.


BorndDasBret

Ever tried doing sit ups after a large meal and drink? No fun I can tell u Bit I think as soon as u eat something the body will use some of its energy to digest the food, energy u may missing during ur workout


ThrowbackPie

Well, no. You can absolutely get stronger without putting on size. Your neural pathways become more efficient, your tendons & ligaments get thicker, and you gain the ability to recruit a higher percentage of muscle fibres in a more efficient manner. Imo you should delete this misinformation.


TheCevi

You can but its much easier to gain strenght while you are adding a size.


chipmunksocute

How do you think yoked bois get yoked? Just by sticking to a 2k diet? Yea no they put away like 4k a day in calories. Yeah you can recomp but your diet has to be reeally dialed in which is too much for many average joes. Just eat at a surplus and get protien, especially for a beginner like OP. Shes under 100 pounds and is 17, upping her caloric intake is the obvious choice and won't hurt her if she puts on 5n 10 lbs.


ThrowbackPie

Which doesn't change my point that the person I responded to is wrong. You can get stronger without building more size. Fact.


TitusCoxwell

Might suggest Whey protein - quick, easily absorbed, supplemental protein. Right after doing a set of push ups.


InProgressPoliglot

See if [this](https://youtu.be/BBSkdTaEEQs) video can help you. [Here](https://www.hybridcalisthenics.com/routine) you will find some variations on a progressive way.


bleverse

HybridCalisthenics for the win 👌


BrickRedemptoris

Maybe you aren't at enough of a caloric surplus to grow muscle from your attempts? Eat more protein at a caloric surplus and you should see improvements in your rep range


sakigake

When it comes to push-ups, having actually correct (straight back, elbows close to body, etc) form makes them way harder than being sloppy. So don’t beat yourself up too much, you might just be doing proper push-ups and that’s why they’re hard!


pelican_chorus

This is exactly right. All the good form stuff you're doing (elbows in, etc) is completely correct, but it *does* make it harder than doing it with poor form. This is a good thing. Try an easier version of a pushup (e.g. on stairs, as many people have said) but don't be tempted to cheat by using poor form.


crappyzengarden2

Anyone else really proud of this girl? I remember when I could only do 5 like a month or ago then ten then 15 sis I KNOOOOW the struggle and I so proud you for still trying


Whim-sy

I think you should try to maximize three things. 1) Volume: 3 pushups isn't a lot of stimulus, even if each one is very hard. Find an incline that you can do 8-12 pushups against, even if it's just standing and leaning into a wall. You should be "feeling the burn" around rep 7 or so. Do three sets of 8-12 for an entire pushup workout. If you can easily do more than 12, lower the incline. 2) Rest: Don't do a pushup workout everyday. Try every 2-3 days. Your body needs time to rest and re-build the micro-tears you will develop in your muscles. That repair part is what actually makes you stronger. 3) Protein: Try to eat at least 75grams of protein every day, and try to increase your calories-per-day. If you do work out and do get rest, but don't have the actual building blocks (Protein) to re-build your muscles, you won't get stronger. You will have much better results with more protein and a calorie surplus. Finally, remember, running for 15 minutes burns way more (WAY MORE) calories than any pushup workout ever will, so don't worry too much about your pushup workouts drastically raising your calorie needs. Good luck! I am confident that you will get stronger!


Windrider

Have you done any of the other variations of pushups? You can start by doing them on a wall or on an elevated surface. The recommended routine in the sidebar covers this.


knittorney

Hi sweetie, there’s a lot of good advice on here but I am 100% sure you’re not eating enough. I’m in recovery for an eating disorder and while I am not a therapist, you definitely sound like me when I was very sick. I’m also noticing that you stopped responding on this post, probably because people were telling you to eat more, and sometimes that was very, VERY distressing for me. If you ever want to talk, no judgment, feel free to reach out to me via PM. I’m 36, going on 37, female, no kids of my own, but I have a 22 year old stepdaughter and I’m the tattooed, tarot-reading, witchy, magic mushroom-loving, pot-smoking hippie aunt with a septum ring to two biological nieces and a whole lot more who aren’t related. I’m kind of a shut-in, so the company would be welcome, and you can just PM me or we can talk on voice or video, entirely up to you and based on whatever you’re comfortable with, as long as you agree to indulge me showing off my pups. You’re welcome to join my “niece crew” any time you like.


ImmodestPolitician

What's your BMI? You are probably underfeeding yourself and not recovering.


onionmane

Figure out your diet first. No point is exerting the body if you're not giving it what it demands of you in the first place. Also, clench your butt and brace your core. Much more stability that way 👍


Master_Molasses7700

As others have said try an easier progression such as putting your hands on a kitchen counter or box. Build that up and then move on to a harder progression where your hands are positioned lower to the ground or on the ground. Your low body weight and you saying you run a lot makes me wonder if you eat enough also. Taking in enough calories to allow your body to recover is essential to making progress.


MattDiedInACarCrash

Eat more. Sleep more. Drink more water. Do assisted versions. Do them often. You’ve got this!


ChocolateBvnny

How much time have you given yourself? Your body will build the muscle as long as you use them. One week you’re doing 3 pushups and in 3 weeks maybe you’re doing 10 or 15


Beatcrushers

Struggling with push-ups from the floor? https://www.instagram.com/reel/CUIfn7HgJ-3/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link


Freelancer242

Start at the knees. And work from there. Make sure your elbows aren't way to far out. Try 45° degree angle. Take it nice and slow.


axiomprime

u/HybridHampton has got your back https://youtu.be/0GsVJsS6474


prickleberry1234

Do them on your knees, on the wall, on the counter. Also dumbbell press would probably help you as well.


Trackerbait

98 lbs huh? Unless you're like 4'10", you're severely underweight. You said yourself you lack muscle. Guess what, muscles can't grow if you're not eating. Consult a doctor and eat a LOT more. Meanwhile, see other comments and start with an easier variation, like wall pushups.


Trouve_a_LaFerraille

Number one mistake I made was putting my hands too high. I was trying to put them directly under my shoulders and it hurt bad. Looked at a few form videos and now I'aiming for "under my chest." That way my shoulders get pulled down and my weight is better centered above my hands.


Exodus111

3 is rarely enough to make good progress, specially since 3 tends to mean 2 and a half. Go down a progression, either on your knees or against a kitchen counter.


gyiren

Amateur here: Work on your core. A weak core results in difficulties doing anything with any of your limbs, makes it hard to do any strength training or cardio. Once your core is strengthened, you'll see more progress in your other exercises.


TripleCaffeine

Do your set of 20 but just the negative half. Slow it down as you get stronger. If you find that the last few are out of reach, hold the press up position in a static pose for 20+ second a couple of times with rest in between. Also have fun with it. It really matters.


RoumanianFoker

Do a push up progression, do normal ones to failure (3 sets to failure for example) and then elevate to easier ones (and do 3-4 sets again with how many you can but dont go over 12 for now). Take rest days, dont workout everyday. I'm doing progressions and they work really well (for pull ups, i went from 5-6 to 9) Now an even more important aspect, food and sleep. Make sure you eat more protein. Eggs, meat, mushrooms, protein bars (check the protein they contain, some of them barelly have any protein), but those are a few examples, find something you like and dont over do it. Sleep is important, it regulates hormones (aside from the fact that you recover while sleeping), they will help you build strength and muscle. Some personal thought, try some back exercises too, a tight chest can cause problems and worsen the posture, a rubber band is enough for the start.


natx37

How often do you do them? Have you ever heard of Grease the Groove (GTG)? Since you can only do 3 pushups, 1 is the number you should go with. 6 - 10 times a day do a single pushup. Do this everyday for two weeks. Don't do any pushups other than these. After two weeks, retest your max pushups. They will have increased in that time. If you want to continue this, then take half of your max and continue for another two weeks. Test again. At this point you should be able to do enough pushups to do something like the RR for continued progress.


drunky_crowette

Have you tried using a wall/counter instead of the floor?


Alpinski

Gotta ask did you do the bwf primer?


blackolivetree

No shame on doing knee push-ups or other variations people mentioned. I eventually built out my arms but my shoulders hold me back so im working on building them out. You can even grab water jugs, bands or 5 lb dumbbells for bicep curls and stuff, they say compound exercises are better than isolation cuz they work out everything but isolation is still great for working on weak spots, and if that's arms no shame in it, we all start somewhere.


No_Witness8417

Sound like you need to eat more protein. If your a runner I imagine you eat a lot of rice and pasta. Try having a few lean steaks. Venison is particularly healthy, especially if it isn’t farmed


M1ch13l

Hi, there is a progression that works up to push ups in the recommended routine of this subreddit: reddit.com/r/bodyweightfitness/wiki/exercises/pushup you could add push-ups with your knees on the ground after incline push ups


StrangeSynths

Consistency. it won’t happen overnight. Keep doing as many as you can(to failure) every day and that number will increase, I promise! 👍🏼


Victoria-Sabrina

Eat more food. Progress from inclined variations in the 6-15 range 3 -5 work sets 2-3 times a week.


icymonsters

I had the same problem as a middle age dude. I mean, I’ve got broad shoulders and I look like I should be able to crush push ups, but I could only do like 4. At first, I started to do push ups every day. I would do as many push ups throughout the day in sets or 4 or 5 reps. After a while I realized that doing them every day didn’t work. My muscles would get sore and I could barely do one. Then I changed my routine to only do this every 3 days. So, every 3 days, I do as many push-ups as possible throughout the day. Right now I’m doing around eighty.


Mollzor

Start at an easier angle. You can even stand up straight and do them against the wall. If that's too easy, try the kitchen table. The the back of the couch. Then a low bench. Then the floor.


FiveAlarmDogParty

I got one of those “perfect” ab cruncher/push-up/dip workout assist things from Walmart, it was like $40. The elevation it provides makes the push-ups a bit easier, and I started with 5, I can now do 15 without stopping. It’s also good for making sure your form is solid. Another thing is I had to seriously focus on engaging my chest otherwise my triceps would overload and they are nowhere near strong enough for that. Give it time, sis! You got this


Mindless_Software732

If you can do a couple in a row already, try just doing slow descending (like 3-4 count down) push ups and then knee assist on the way back up! This helps a ton with building on the strength you already have.


Moonbouncer89

You are one resurrecting mother fucker then, cause you're here rn. Do them on your knees and if you have to, standing up on the wall.


kvng_st

Like someone said, if you’re 98 pounds and not 5’0 or under then that’s not gonna be good. It’s easier to do calisthenics when you’re lighter but at that point you will have very little muscle, eat more and eat more protein while trying consistently and you will get stronger. I’m not saying get to 150 pounds lol but whatever weight you feel stronger at


velmah

It's not dumb, it's super common! But if you aren't strength training at a level that works for your body, you won't magically be able to do them -- having perfect form actually makes them harder because it forces you to engage the right muscles, which you haven't built up yet. Others have given good advice about specific exercises to do (especially incline pushups and triceps dips), but I think the most important thing is to pick 1-2 exercises that are *just* hard enough for you to do 3-5 sets of of 6-10. When you hit 10, do a harder version. Do that 3 times a week with a day in between. Your goal is to build up the muscles, not train for endurance the way you might be used to with running. That's what I've been doing, starting from a high counter and progressing to a very low stair, and I went from being able to do 0 (literally 0) knee pushups to doing 35+ in a regular workout. And even after two months of that, I'm still only able to do 2 strict pushups. So it takes time and consistency, but you will absolutely get there if you're motivated! Good luck!


NoWarlnBasingSe

Give it time! Also make sure you are eating enough to fuel your muscles and help them recover. Progressive overload is crazy, if you are consistent you'll be doing much more than 3 in a year's time!


LayWhere

Find easier progressions and move on once you can do a satisfying number of reps Eat more lol. Especially protein.


secretfella

Hey, if you're working to failure it doesnt matter if it means you're only doing 3, pushing that last one which leads to failure is going to be the most progressive pushup you'll ever do.


ElsebetSteinen

I'm a female in my mid-40's and I started doing my journey to pushups: 1. Against the wall 2. On the floor, but using my knees 3. Doing 1 without my knees, rest knees 4. Finally doing a few regular ones I'm up to about 7-8 reps per set. I recall not being able to do a single one, so please don't feel like it's hopeless. Don't give up and just keep doing it every week and it will come in time. It may take a long time, I think it took me close to a year to be able to do normal pushups. However unlike you I was pretty overweight, as I lost weight it actually became easier.


Squid-Bastard

Try just doing one or two, wait a few hours, then one of two more, and just keep doing this. Shoot for like 5 total a day to start, then slowly build up


Deathbloodma

A: You have to eat protein, don't bulk (eat a lot) though. B: Just do knee pushups, i.e., knees on the ground, arms at 45\* from your torso, and contract your abs. If that's too hard, then do standing pushups at a slight incline. This means using using a bathroom sink, or table, anything lower than chest height to press off of. It's going to take a long time to reach 20 pushups, unless you're constantly doing pushups every 30 mins everyday.


R2W1E9

If you can do 3 you can start 3RM Russian Fighter Pull up Program, just applied to push ups. [Here is how it works] (https://www.strongfirst.com/the-fighter-pullup-program-revisited/)


bumpesses

Start with modified (from the knees) push ups. Make sure your scapula (shoulder blades) aren't flaring. Helps to film this from above or from the side to see. When you do 3 (or whatever your max is) rest for 30 to 60 seconds before you go again. Even if you can only do one at a time. Do one, rest, repeat, and increase the rest time until you feel nice and exhausted/sore. You didn't mention your diet at all. Try to get at least .75g of protein per pound of body weight every day. Stay patient, it takes time!


txmuscle2100

Don’t feel bad, my sister is an average 20 year old and she couldn’t do 1 push-up either. Women generally have very weak arm muscles unless they train regularly. Lookup up “push-up progression”, they usually have you start angled on wall and build up from there.


2moreX

If you die after three, rest. Go again. And always watch your protein and carb intake. Building muscle is 70% nutrition.


Sai_Krithik

If you die after three, rest in peace.


2moreX

You'll be dead, but you'll be jacked!


Sai_Krithik

A jacked zombie then.


2moreX

Nice.


BrotherhoodOfWaves

If this is your first year/time working out, don't worry about it. Contrary to what is being said here, your body WILL get better at push ups of you keep attempting them, even in a caloric deficit, however you likely will not gain **muscle**, only **strength**. This is because of neurological strength, the nervous system adapts to the movement and gets a bit better each time after it has properly rested I mentioned if you're a beginner don't worry because you will make crazy fast strength gains in your first year. Women can gain around 10 pounds of muscle during the first year of proper training. That's a ton of strength right there Eat in a caloric deficit in order to gain both muscle and strength


Regular-Procedure-86

Weak pelvic floor can sometimes lead to an inability to do push-ups in females!


Chaos-MS

Because you’re trying hard on a hard progression. Get very comfortable with knee pushups first then try regular push ups.


Mr_lightning22

that legit shouldn't happen i play minecraft all day and i can still do 3 sets of 15


thebigeverybody

Start with a much lighter variation and work your way up.


cmndrloki

A lot of stuff here and even more outside this sub is written for people who are kinda in shape but not a ton. For everyone else, plenty of workouts will feel different than what is described because living one's life leads to muscle growth that isn't rounded or healthy. While I'm no doctor, there is plenty to be said for working things until they feel like ever out of shape fitness person on here thinks they should feel. Props for wanting to get into shape. Good luck finding something you love amd can share. Don't forget to eat well :)


NyanPounce

Keep doing them until you're unable to do one. Try doing a one minute pushup. Thirty seconds down, thirty seconds up. Just remember to be consistent. If sore, stretch and massage. Side note: Eat a proper diet. [ Enjoy the journey to your goal ]


spazalitie

Posted [this](https://www.reddit.com/r/nextfuckinglevel/comments/na7qfy/this_guy_talking_about_pushups_fitness_is_a/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=ios_app&utm_name=iossmf) previously. Good luck


David_from_Venezuela

If you don't feel your chest, try sliding your hands together wile doing the pushups without actually moving them. Also consciously flexing your chest muscels should help.


afuckingpolarbear

Try something easier like the wall pushup or using your knees to build up strength Also, BlanketsandBlankets has a good point. Eat more.


NinjatheBlackCat

It takes time and commitment and the progressions in the faq work.


No-Character50

i recommend starting just doing any incline pushups on a bench or a counter, if this is drains your body as well i would move to simple wall pushups where your vertical with the wall, this is gonna build ur strength enough to start going in the ground, then once you feel like your ready get in your push up position then place your knees on the ground to help and start doing more reps of those pushups and eventually you will be able to do a regular push up for many reps in no time


Phil-McRoin

Try elevated pushups or push ups from your knees. You can train the range of motion with a reduced load. Elevated pushups are preferable. If you train consistently & eat enough protein you should start to see improvement pretty quickly. Also try other tricep/shoulder/chest excercises to help build strength


justdoittm

Please do knee assisted pushups. They’re the best way to develop the upper body strength to be able to do regular pushups!!!


Clear_Vanilla5358

If I was a girl is I'd like to be just like you. This is normal, you just got to keep trying


bblmffn

You can either try to lift your upper body in a higher position like a bank or a chair, then more bodyweight would be on your feet. Or you can put your knees on the ground so you don’t have to push that much weight :)


SnakeAis

As long as you stay consistent and take rest days, your body will adapt. Don't get discouraged, you'll get there!


AsuraOmega

Keep doing 3 all throughout the day. When youtube ads pop, drop and give me 3. When you're waiting for toast, drop and do 3. After leaving the bathroom, drop and do 3. Whenever you get thirsty, drop and do 3. In calisthenics, there is a saying "The only way do more *insert exercise,* Is to do more *insert exercise."* its the principle of greasing the groove.


MortiasJackson

If you’re literally at 0% chest muscle your arms are going to compensate and take the strain. You need to start off easier/elevated to give the chest a chance to engage. Really focus on building that mind muscle connection with your pecks Edit: just adding this; as an exercise before hand try bringing your shoulders together in front of you, using just your chest muscles while standing and hold that in a static position until you start to feel those chest muscles working. Keep that feeling of that chest muscle tension in the front of your mind when going into the press-ups


Tora586

Another good type of routine that I like to call milking your max is 3 push ups so what you want to do in your push up session is 1 push up every minute so do 1 push up rest a minute then do another one, go up to 15 in the first session and build off that. Also stretch before you do your push ups a good 10 minutes of stretching will help alot. This works for pull ups as well !


Veggie-eater

Have you tried instead of going straight onto your feet just having your knees as the anchor point instead until you are stronger? Dont be afraid of doing simpler versions until your muscles are stronger and used to the motions.


beachandhummus

I am a guy and couldn't do pushups till I was 23. It's fine. Just focus on form and try to do one more every time. If u fail try next time. Eventually, you will succeed. Also check out this subreddit wiki for progression Make sure your form is correct by recording yourself


KrunoS

Ive had a lot of success with a form of triple progression. Here'how it works. * I set limits to the number of sets per session. I use 3 as my lower limit, 5 as my upper. * i set a lower and upper number of reps per set. This varies depending on exercise. For dips i use 4 as my lower, 8 as my upper. * First session i do the lower limit of number of sets for tge lower limit of the number of reps. For dips it would be 3 sets of 4 reps. * If i get the number of sets and reps, next session i add one more set. If i dont get the number of sets per rep, next week i try to do so. * Repeat until you hit the max number of sets at the minimum number of reps. For example, i get 5 sets of 4 reps. * Once you accomplish that, drop the number of sets to the lower limit and add one more rep per set. So i would do 3 sets of 5 reps. Repeat the process until you hit the upper limit of reps and the upper limit of sets. For my dips it would be 5 sets of 8 reps. * Once you do that, add weight or move on to the next progression and start the process over with the new progression/weight. * I modified the last step for me, in that i try to hit the max number of sets at the min number of reps for the next weight/progression. If i can, i try to do the same with an added rep. I set the start point of my progression at whatever set and rep i failed. For example, if i move on to adding 2.5 kgs to my dips, ill try 5 sets of 4 with that weight. If i can, nect session i try 5 sets of 5. I keep going until i can't hit the 5 sets at x reps. So if i fail at 4 sets of 6 and 1 set of 3. Next session i go for 4 sets of 6 and one set of 4. * And keep going ad infinitum. How many reps, sets and what weight jumps you use are up to you.


Sai_Krithik

How many times did you die OP?


domtzs

I am still very skinny and I realized I lacked muscles generally. So I take care to do some other addtional exercizes for the rest of the body, so I catch up on a general level.


DekiruYT

Like a lot of people said, lower the intensity. You can do that by lifting your body upper. I started doing push ups in a wall, then inclined in the wall, then in a table, then in a chair, then with knees on the ground, then on the floor, after that started increasing difficulty by elevating feet and so on. To progress fast be sure that you end up tired and you can get to failure in LAST set. Try doing them in an angle where you can do from 4-12 reps. Then keep lowering the body once you can do 12 reps. How much you should train? If you want to improve push ups as fast as possible you can do workout - rest - workout - rest, etc. Resting between sets from 3 to X min. Remember push ups use a lot of muscles and its normal we get pretty fatigued.


trollwnb

do knee pushups, btw i was like you once, now i can do 100's of pushups, weighted pushup's, havent tried 1handed pushups yet tho.


Flick9000

yo dude, dont give up, in 3 weeks i turned my 5 pushups into 17, and after another week in 20, you just need to practice, try to do 5 sets of 5 pushups, 3 normal pushups and 2 on the knees. and every 2 week increase the reps


lostsoul8282

I’m the same. If I do them in my own. I barely hit 50 but in my boxing class which I take 3 times a week we do 150 at the end of the workout. The difference? The class has friends, people cheering you on, distracting music, etc. Maybe try to do a push up challenge with a friend. See if you can get a few more than your used to. Make that your new baseline then try again and again…


WilliamOfMaine

Progressions are your friend


11sam111

Easiest to hardest Wall push ups,incline push ups,knee push ups,negative push ups,push-ups. Start from easiest and aim for at least 10-12 reps in a row before moving on.


dakotaking

Yo, let me introduce you to my man Hampton [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GsVJsS6474](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GsVJsS6474) Tl;DR Start from the wall pushups and move forward, just like weights. You don't go for the full deadlift right away, you need to develop.


louisme97

just do more... honestly... Sounds stupid but for does only matter to a certain point. At least the first day i was ever to a gym and had a training with a personal coach, he walked me trough all the weighted exercises and said for every time the weights touch before your exercise is over, you will do 10 pushups. Im 140kg which translate roughly to 300 pounds... At that time i was a few kilos off, maybe 120-ish. He told me how to do them, i was able to do like 5 properly, then 2-3 ones that were shaky af. and then i crushed to the ground... He said keep going, even if you dont push up anymore, get in the position and slowly lift yourself down. Like only the one part of the pushup... take breaks, do variations but dont do 3 and think i cant do more in a row, lets stop here.


Whole-Requirement222

Start with incline push ups, use a countertop or bench so your body is angled, makes it a lot easier and you can build more strength, also might want to do some other arm exercises, it sounds like you’re pretty skinny so you might need to build up strength in your triceps, biceps, and shoulders, because push ups don’t just use chest muscles, arms and shoulders are quite heavily involved as well, also make sure you’re eating enough calories, food is fuel for your muscles, if you get really tired really quickly, your body might not have enough fuel to perform optimally, hope this helps


Reddit-Itself

a while ago when I was younger doing two push ups killed my elbows. I was so confused, because I used to be able to do 50. With time, I was able to up that up to where I was.


mgross_23

Negative reps


Moe86

Do it on the ground but only raising from the waist up.


Haych13

What's your pushup routine? I couldn't do a single 1 when I started. I started on knees doing 10 knee pushups. Then when I could do a single pushup, I'd do that, then finish my set on my knees, then when I could do 2 pushup, I'd do 2 then the rest on my knees. I'd aim for 10 reps a set and 5 sets. I just kept doing it until I could do my 5 sets of 10. Probably not the best routing but it worked for me.


Indominus_wraith

I'm a 17 year old dude who currently weighs 45 kg, who took up calisthenics 3 years ago. I was about 40 kg back then and just like you, I couldn't do any pushups or pullups without dying. Surprisingly, it took me only about 2 weeks to get to 2 pushups and another 2 weeks to get up to 10. Now, I do straddle planches, handstands, weighted pistol squats, the works. I hope you get to your first 10 pushups pretty quick. I didn't have that much of a problem getting there, so maybe you might be secretly having an arm injury which you might not know about. Get yourself checked just to be sure.


yeswecann

Progressions


flipflipmcgee

When I started training for the Marines, I couldn’t even do a single pushup. What I did, that my recruiter recommended, is: 50 assisted pushups (“girl pushups”) every morning, and 50 at night. Seriously, it sounds so simple (because it is), but after doing this for 4 months, I was able to do 35 full pushups in 2 minutes! You got this


vplatt

Oof... boot camp must have been brutal for you!


flipflipmcgee

I mean yeah it sucked but I trained for a year before I left haha, was in way better shape by the time I shipped out


chemistry_teacher

I started about five steps up a staircase, working my way “down the stairs” as my numbers rose up to about 8-10 at each step. That way you build strength without overdoing it. Took some weeks but (as a scrawny teen) I got up to 30-35 on the floor in a few months. Trying to do the same now with pull-ups by working out at a gym that has a machine which “helps” me with partial support as I build up to full body weight. Good luck to you! You can do it!!


G-Man777

Eat more protein, start by using some assistance - push off the table, stairs, knee push ups to hit your rep goals. Sprinkle a few sets throughout your workout or even throughout your day. Give it a month and I bet you’re hitting 10-20 easy. Maybe try breaking it down into smaller goals, do assisted for a week, take a rest day then test yourself for a solid 5. Pass or fail continue on. You’ve got this.


sasha_says

I have difficulty doing regular pushups but yoga and PT helped me identify some good alternatives: [yoga version](https://youtu.be/7agiIk9KgyI) of push-up negatives—lowering yourself down rather than pushing up. My PT encouraged me to do bear holds and shoulder taps—plank pull throughs are also good to strengthen my upper back. These help strengthen your core as well.


enidokla

Release your shoulder blades. Feel that stretch in your chest. — source: me; the things I tell myself


tdevore

Just keep working with what you can do and then move up. A few years ago after getting really out of shape I started working on a cardio machine at the gym. I literally could only go for about 4 minutes before needing to stop before I killed myself. So I would just do 4 minutes each time. After a while I moved up to 5 minutes. Then 7 minutes, and so on, until I eventually could do a half hour. The moral is, just work at your pace until and you'll eventually be able to do more. There's no amount you *should* be able to do.


HD_8BIT

Ontop of all the other advise. imaging you are pushing the ground away, and not yourself up


TheKokomoHo

You can it might take a lil while. I'm a lifelong runner turned gym rat. Took me awhile to get.some basic strength but stick.with it and it will.come


badmanveach

Sounds like you would most benefit from Starting Strength and a half gallon of milk every day.


AtlasPlugs

You’ve received a ton of great advice about progression, but I’d add one thing. Build the mind to muscle connection. When I train complete beginners I have them do the exercise with no weight and eyes closed to think of the muscle being used. Try laying on the floor, hold a broomstick or staff if that helps you, close your eyes, and go through the push-up motion while picturing your chest squeezing together and your triceps contracting. Just do it over and over until you feel the muscles moving. This will give you better control over them and you’ll be able to push them further. Don’t give up, you can do this


Mountain_Peach_4190

First off you need a muscle building diet, I suggest protein. Red meat is your new best friend, next set a goal for let’s say 30 push ups. Do one at a time and take as much time as you need till you get 30. Other than that stay consistent and have fun


rnelonhead

I would say experiment with progressions and volumizing schemes, like going from 7x1 to 6x2, then work your way up to adding more reps total via more sets. High frequency also helps with form practice. As for progressions, I forward anyone elses word here; start with a high elevation and slowly lower it down as you go. I would advise only doing so by making a 50% or so volume increase in each progression before moving forward.


escapedone360

Don’t worry about how many you can do, just keep on doing them with good technique and you will progress and soon will be able to do more and more over time, you won’t be able to do 20 or even 10 push-ups overnight, if you can only do 3 then only do 3, then another 3 if you can and repeat a few times until you can’t anymore, rest a few days then do it again, if you have to then do 2 or 1 in sets, just be consistent and don’t give up.


Kirk_AKM

Lizard crawl for 10 min, 3 sets.


razzec_phone

Are you doing them from your feet or from your knees? I mean, when you're laying flat facing down before you start to do a push up, are you trying to do it with your legs out straight and weight on your toes/feet or do you prop yourself up on your knees before doing one? My ex had to start with doing them from her knees while making sure her chest and arms were actived during the pushups. This worked to help her build up to doing full pushups and she was eventually able to go for more in a row than I could. I'd also say try to do them just a few at a time a few times a day. It's surprising how that makes a big difference.


Vegtorian95

Nanny push ups, feels good as a warm up before doing the real push ups. Nanny push ups are a good basic form to help prepare you. Good luck 🤞


bazooka_matt

Youtube has female lead push up progression videos. They are amazing. I don't have time to dig them up but they are out there. Take a look.


Beneficial-Ad8472

Push ups work the following muscles: 1. Chest 2. Tricep 3. Glute 4. Core Do isolation exercises on those muscles so when you use them together in a push up they all contribute to your push up count. 1. Tricep: body weighted tricep dips or weighted kick backs 2. Chest: If you have access to a gym, do progressively heavier (start low, go slow) bench press 3. Glutes: Squats/walking lunges 4. Core: Mountain climbers for core or hanging leg raises


Words1stActions2

Try hanging from a bar (pull-up) for as long as you can. Also try holding yourself up at the top of your push-up for as long as you can.


darrensurrey

Keep doing them daily, as many as you can. Then try negatives after your final one. Go into the raised position and lower yourself slowly. Alternatively, do your next one after the final with your hands on a chair seat. Raised is easier. Crank out as many as you can after that.


aalliecat

Eat more food


Codemonkey1987

I had the opposite problem to you, 220lbs when I started. I started off doing push ups on my knees and just pushing my upper body think thighs at 90degree angle to upper body in start position. I followed the RR progressive overload so did 3x5 on day 1, 3x6, 3x7 then 3x8. Then from here I put my knees right back to make it harder, knees at 45 degree angle to body in start position. I worked up from 3x5, 3x6, 3x7 and 3x8 again. Then attempted 3x5 full push ups. I could only manage the first few so I did 3x4 full and 1 on knees at 45 degree. Just kept gradually increasing the number of full push ups. I can now do 3x7 slow controlled full push ups! Keep gradually increasing somehow and take your time, you will get there!


albertineb

I recommend following the [Prilepin technique](https://www.handstandquest.com/blog/prilepin-workouts) to improve over time. Start with knees on the ground and get your number to say 30, do the same for planks (ex: push to 60 seconds+), then follow same technique for push ups.


Hakobus

You already have a ton of great suggestions, but I’ll throw in my thoughts, because I used to be in the same boat in my teens. I’m a guy and I was anorexic level skinny when first I started working out. I could barely do a single pushup, and it was with horrible form. It took me a while, and I had to put on more than 20lbs of muscle before I started really noticing a change in my strength and endurance and being comfortable doing tens of reps with good form. And another 20lbs before I was actually at a weight that felt optimal for me for bodyweight training. It’ll take time, but you’ll get better as long as you eat well, sleep well, and - quite literally - keep pushing.


Bud_Johnson

It took me like 6 months to be able to do 1 pull up. I had to slowly work there by building up my muscles. Don't expect immediate results. Do a progression.


numberThirtyOne

You need reps to get better at pushups and if you can only do one, then you can't get reps. Start with knee pushups or incline so you can tire yourself out doing 20 of whatever you can do 20 of instead of 1. Once you can do 10 regular, 20 should follow almost immediately. Source: Could only do like 1 well into my 20s.


theAlphabetZebra

I’ve always felt stronger in my push-ups stance when I’ve got my abs slightly flexed. That stability and energy really translates well for me, it’s the difference of feeling like I’m just moving dead weight or really pushing down through the floor.


kschin1

What got me to perfect my push-up form and increase my reps was Bench Press. I was 20F, 160 lbs, 5’4, and my push-ups were horrendous. I could maybe do 5. My friend told me to try bench pressing. I started out with just the bar. Slowly I added 5 lbs to each side. 4 years later, I can bench 135 lbs. I’m 24 now, 145 lbs, and I can do 20 pushups in a row.


BazzieB

As lots of peeps have said. Start on an elevated level and get your body use to the movement.


ExtraSmooth

One thing it took me a while to figure out is how important your core is in doing a pushup with good form. Your body needs to get used to holding itself in that rigid posture, even while your arms and chest are taking on your weight. How's your plank? It might be helpful to do some plank work alongside your pushups (maybe alternating days).


otter111a

A progression and good attitude/mindset https://youtu.be/0GsVJsS6474


Fjotla

It may be nutrition. I also started with barely 2 push ups.


danibomb

Start with your knees on the ground. You could also try a tricep pushup instead, too!


axidentalaeronautic

Push ups are more than arms and chest, but those are primaries. Use your knees. Basically do the push up from a kneeling position. It’s much easier. Alternatively, do it against a wall (standing). The closer your feet are to the wall, the easier the motion will be. And of course the further you stand from the wall, the harder it will be.


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