The Power of Small Daily Improvements
January 20, 2010 by admin
The long awaited goal of performing 100 consecutive good-form pushups finally became a reality on Monday, Jan. 18. After eight grueling weeks of staying focused and disciplined on following the “100 Consecutive Pushups Program”, the result was really a pleasant surprise, and just confirms my belief that small daily improvements over time, can lead to stunning results. Aristotle similarly states, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is not an act, but a habit.”
Following the program however, did not come without speed bumps and impediments. The first time I attempted this with my buddy, Roger Q., in Hong Kong last year, despite the fact that we kept each other accountable, we gave up somewhere around Week 5 of the program, citing elbow soreness as an excuse. That experience left a sour taste in my mouth, and I was determined this time, more than ever to get over the hump, and despite how incredibly focused I was, I suffered yet, another let down around the beginning of Week 5, allowing work and other obligations take priority, and relegating my pushups to the backseat.
Fortunately, I recommitted and doubled my efforts to get back on track after a two week hiatus. In addition to redoing the pushups in Week 5 and continuing towards the finish line in Week 6, I made the challenge even more difficult, by forcing myself to do 100 pushups per day - two sets of 50 consecutive pushups. After 8 weeks and 4,377 pushups later, I was pumped up to take the ultimate test of performing 100 consecutive good form pushups. My brother, Jordan, was witness to the feat, and I have to give him props for taking the creative open-shutter photograph above. The experience felt surreal - my arms wanted to give way after 80, and each pushup thereafter, exacerbated the feeling of my chest exploding, my knees started shaking around 85, and at 90, my head was throbbing violently, and I wanted to call it quits, but I just focused on one-pushup at a time, and was steadfastly certain that I would make it, as I kept envisioning the number, “100″ in my head, and sure enough, I collapsed after “100″, and face-planted on the carpeted bedroom - my arms were lifeless and jello-like, but I was in sheer joy.
The Japanese have a word for the concept of never ending improvement, “kaizen”. Whether it’s your respective career, a new skill you would like to develop or a new hobby, growth, progress and ultimate success come to those who train and keep training. So in 2010, what are you training for?