July 03 , 2011
Once in a while, I like to browse Youtube simply looking for videos of crazy exercises. You know, exercises of the “are you KIDDING me?” variety. There are some people in the world who are able to perform astonishing feats of strength, and as a person who thinks the human body is an amazing, beautiful thing in and of itself, witnessing the things some people are able to do with their bodies just adds to my infinite admiration. Most of the time, I just stare in awe as I wonder what it’s like to have so much physical capability that others would think you are superhuman. However, I recently came across a couple videos and thought to myself, “Hey, with some training, I think I could do that.”
There were two videos in particular that caught my eye. One video showed a man doing ten consecutive one-handed clapping pushups with relative ease, and the other depicted a guy who generated so much power on his pushup that he could clap three times (once in front, once behind his back, and once more in front) before he hit the ground. I was so marveled by the sheer awesomeness of these exercises that I immediately set a goal for myself to be able to do them in a month’s time (well, I set a realistic goal of being able to do a two-clap plyometric pushup for the time being, but I’ll get myself to three, eventually). I’m proud to say that within a couple weeks, I was able to do both of the exercises that I set out to do. Now, my goal is to be able to do 10-15 consecutive reps of each.
I firmly believe that it was my short term goal of being able to perform these exercises that helped develop the upper body power required to get me to the point where I am now able to bench press 300 lbs. What’s funny is I didn’t even have the goal of bench pressing 300 lbs in mind until a week ago after working out together with Anthony. Since I had Anth there to spot me, I figured I’d try to see how much I could do. It’s worth mentioning that I never really train to press very heavy weights or “max out”, nor do I even incorporate a flat barbell bench press into my routine very often. The last time I tried to max out on the bench press was maybe about two or three years ago, and back then, I was only able to press 275 lbs. Well, during my workout with Anthony, I managed to get to 295 lbs, and thus the goal of 300 lbs was born (and conquered!). Check out this video of the record setting lift, and the exercises that helped me achieve this goal:
It just goes to show that it’s worthwhile to continually push your physical limits, and to change your workout routines frequently. Not only will this help revitalize a stagnant workout routine, it may just help you achieve something you previously thought was impossible. As it turns out, inspiration was only a click away.