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Paige Waehner

Challenge of the Week: Take the Pushup Fitness Test

By February 2, 2010

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pushupWhen was the last time you really challenged yourself during your workouts? I'm sure many of you work hard at exercise, but if you've been doing the same thing for awhile, maybe you need a challenge to make things a little more interesting.

If you're game, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to take the pushup fitness test to find out where you fall within your age group and gender. For example, if you're a 20-year-old man, being able to do 36 pushups (all with good form) is considered excellent. If you're a 39-year-old woman, doing 27 pushups (on your knees) would put you in the excellent category.

You'll find all the details here, but don't skip it if you can't do the pushups suggested, which are full pushups for men and pushups on the knees for women and involve lowering all the way down until your chin touches the mat. Instead, find a modification you can do and complete as many as you can. Make a note of that number and, in a few weeks, we'll take the challenge again and you can see if you've improved. You can also spend that time working your way up to the suggested pushups.

Last, post your results here and tell us how you did. Is there room for improvement or did you max out? Leave a comment and tell us how you did on the pushup fitness test.

February 2, 2010 at 6:36 am
(1) Rev says:

I’m 54 and do 50 pushups two to three times a week. I do them with my angles on an exercise ball.

February 2, 2010 at 8:52 am
(2) Gorbs says:

I’m a 43 year old female. I can do 30 full pushups in one set. My best friend is 52 and she can usually do a few more than i can!! We definitely drop reps in our 2nd and 3rd sets. 20-25. WooHoo!

February 2, 2010 at 9:11 am
(3) George White says:

I’m 65. Started working out regularly about 4 months ago. I started doing push-ups against an excercise bench, and could only do about 5, then I went to the standard push-up position and worked up to three sets of 12, now I can do 3 sets of 12 on a decline with my feet about 2 feet off the floor on the bench. So, all in all, I’d say I’m doing pretty good for a senior.

February 2, 2010 at 12:58 pm
(4) Derric says:

Well, I’m 37 and can do 80. I’m military, so I don’t think I count (hee hee).

February 2, 2010 at 1:32 pm
(5) Steve says:

My family goes to a Martial Arts school and my 11 year old daughter can do 65 pushups with perfect form and my wife about 80. Depending on the night I will do anywhere from 150-200 pushups and this is after working out for an hour. It is a state of mind and repeatition. Keep up the good work everyone. Nothing beats a body weight workout.

February 2, 2010 at 3:48 pm
(6) FitnessOver50 says:

Push-ups are a regular part of the exercise routine.

60 every morning using rotating push-up handles.

I am 52


February 2, 2010 at 4:19 pm
(7) Brad says:

I see alot of pushups mentioned in the comments above but did anyone actually look at the test requirements and then do their pushups to the specs?

Touch your chin to the floor, back rigid, no belly on every pushup? I can do a truckload of pushups myself, however, 150-200 or even 80 performed exactly as described in the instructions, ALL IN ONE SET sounds, well, a bit optomistic? I don’t even think my insanely fit, alien DNA, MMA fighter, fitness trainer can do those kinds of numbers?

February 2, 2010 at 5:28 pm
(8) Dave says:

I’m 53 and do 50 to 60 Perfect Push Ups almost every morning. I’m sure I could do at least 60 to 70 regular push ups, but I’m hooked on the Perfect Push Ups, they are much more difficult. When I started over 2 years ago, I could only do about 20, even though I could 50 plus regular push ups.

February 2, 2010 at 6:52 pm
(9) crow says:

I am female and 67 years old. I do 30 to 40 pushups at a time and I do them 6 to 7 times a week. They are part of an hour and a half of exercises, stretches and strengthing plus Yoga.

February 3, 2010 at 12:30 pm
(10) Shane says:

I don’t enjoy high volume fluff in my exercises (except kettlebell swings or running) I only do hand-stand pushups and one-handed pushups. 4 Sets of 8-12, and at a bodyweight of 185 I think I pass the test.

February 7, 2010 at 1:37 pm
(11) Ken says:

I’m almost 57 and haven’t done pushups in a good handfull of years. I do a decent amount of dips though. I did 46 good ones.

February 7, 2010 at 4:59 pm
(12) Bob says:

I’m 69, and I maxed out at 62 pushups today. Pretty good for a “youngun”, I guess.

February 9, 2010 at 9:49 pm
(13) Dianne says:

I’m a 49 yr female and did a pushup contest not too long ago. Did 51 military style in 1 min. Not too bad….try to time yourself and see how many you can do without cheating on form!!

February 9, 2010 at 11:49 pm
(14) Fitness fan says:

I’m 64, and doing 50 reps using the Perfect Push-up every other day. I tried doing the floor push-ups, and my chest hits the ground before my chin – actually easier than using the Perfect Push-up. My chest has expanded from the upper body weight workouts and push-ups the last 3 years. I do the stomach crunches with hand weights and push-ups after the upper body workout with weights. The heart rate elevates to around 85 during the push-ups, much higher than during the upper body exercises with weights.

The push-up is a great exercise staple, and Paige has a number of variants to keep it interesting and challenging.

February 10, 2010 at 2:09 am
(15) Fitness fan says:

I meant to say above that my heart rate is 85% MHR (136 bpm). I expend 120 – 150 cals from the upper body workout. I burn an additional 300 – 350 cals from the cardio on the elliptical machine. The total calories burned from a workout essentially cancel the calories taken in at one meal.

February 10, 2010 at 4:08 pm
(16) Joe says:

I’m 66 and do 160 0n days I don’t go to the gym

February 11, 2010 at 1:35 am
(17) samuel thomson says:

I am 60 yrs old and I do 25 perfect pushups per set and 2 sets every week. I also do 12 dips on the bar four sets a week but chin ups sti ll a problem for me-not more than 6-reps per set. I am gratefulto your site for good guidance and motivation. Thanks a lot

February 11, 2010 at 6:05 pm
(18) Shnock says:

This push up test is nonsense!!!

I am, according to your test,
way way above excellent,
but I know I way out of shape.

Reductionistic tests don’t tell us much. Give us a more rounded tests for our fitness include abdominal muscles, leg exercises, aerobic fitness etc.

February 21, 2010 at 6:55 pm
(19) norahs says:

I’d like to see the 67 year old woman doing 40 military pushups. She should put it on youtube she’d go viral. I’m 52 and currently do 10 proper man push-ups. Women are strong enough to push up from toes when they can do @ 25 from knees.

May 17, 2010 at 5:02 am
(20) George says:

I am 46 and can do 51 pushups in 3 minutes. I am 275 pounds, so pushing up a lot of weight.

July 24, 2011 at 9:42 pm
(21) CHARLES says:

12 sets of 50 decline pushups daily…..sound good?

February 26, 2012 at 6:54 pm
(22) Rick says:

I am a 45 year old male and do 1 set of 50, then 3 sets of 40 with 5 minutes in between.

December 27, 2012 at 2:47 am
(23) ted lind says:

I am a 52 year man and I bench press 325 pounds I weigh 180 and have done 48 push-ups in minute and set a record in my age and weigh class.

January 9, 2013 at 9:57 pm
(24) william says:

just did 200 push ups in one setting and will turn 64 this March

August 29, 2013 at 12:55 pm
(25) irie says:

i am a 65 yr old female and i do 4 sets of 25 mens push ups atleast 2 times a day if not 3.
i do it to challenge myself. if i have to get old i want to be the best i can be.

November 30, 2013 at 1:40 pm
(26) Andrew says:

I have been working at it now for a few years. Today, I did 100. The last ten were poor form, but I will take what I can get. The last three I really struggled, but I made it. I 49 years old. Yahoo…

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