More than Pushups. Beyond Discipline.

Workout: 1 reason to focus on quality rather than quantity

by | Mindset, Pushups

In life, as in fitness, to get momentum, the focus on quality is rarely an advantage. The higher the quality, the harder it is to make it happen. That’s particularly true at the start of a challenging journey. Over time the shift in quality becomes essential and should be among the top priority.

In my personal life, the focus on quality and values, as a whole, began with Covid. I began restricting my social interactions. I allocated my time only to people I valued the most. My circle of friends got smaller but more meaningful. The same also happened with my fitness routine, with almost a year’s offset in timing.

Workout: the focus on quality shoud become a priority  overtime

Focus On Quality: yes, but Not So Fast!

Initially, ignoring quality was part of my strategy. To get momentum quickly, it was better not to pay attention too much to details. The fitness routine I started because of covid was comprising a series of 150 pushups in a row. 150 was an impressive number for me, and I used this ego trick to stick to my daily 150-pushup series. The focus on quality was almost the opposite of my goal. At that time, my goal was to stick to a fitness routine to make it a habit. The quality of my pushups was second order.

No Shame, No Gain

The beginnings were laughable. My pushups were poorly executed. Many would-be tempted to laugh at me when looking at me doing this 150 pushup series. I knew it, but for some reason, I was almost shameless. The focus on quality was not my priority at this stage. At the gym, between two lockdowns, I had the habit of happily executing my 150 pushup series. All of this despite my ridiculous pushup forms and me making loud noises from exhaustion and excruciating pain. Maybe there is a bit of truth in saying “no shame, no gain”. I believe so. Read more about that topic here: why being shameless helps to achieve goals.

Not Fooling Yourself With Excuses Is The Key Factor

Tired, lazy, and busy: not fooling myself with excuses was the key. In some circumstances, I was below my average physical and mental condition. I kept showing up for this daily pushup fitness challenge or, more accurately, for my daily workout routine. I knew that consistency was vital to build a habit. The frequency of my training, which was supposed to be daily, kept getting better. “Cheat days” became rarer and rarer. My lack of focus on quality to prioritize the build of the habit was paying off. My “led-by-ego” strategy was working.

Stop Cheating Once Your Habit Is Established

In July 2021, I looked at the videos of my daily workouts since the beginning. I could see a massive improvement in the pushups forms, but I could still see that I was still cheating on some aspects. For instance, my back was not properly straight during the whole pushup series. Additionally, I was still using some of the lower parts of my back to get some momentum on the way up. It was gentle, but it was still cheating.

Why I Temporarily Drop My 150 Pushup Series

One day I was lazy. I did not want to do my 150 pushup series. I told myself that I could compromise. After all, doing (almost) perfectly 100 pushups is as much rewarding as unproperly executed 150 pushups. It’s also slightly faster, even if the pushup movements are somewhat slower as I lean more forward, go deeper, and push higher up.

I decided to downsize my daily pushup challenge from a series of 150 pushups to 100 pushup. This was when I started to focus on quality. I did not want to fool myself anymore with a easier exercise. I wanted to focus on quality for a similar – if not better – outcome for my body. That’s the main reason I made this shift towards more qualitative pushups.

It’s never too late to be better. It’s also never too late to start doing pushup-ups, a classic exercise that can help you get stronger.

Happy workout!

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