- Navy midshipman Joe Giannini showed Insider the 200-push-up workout he’s using to stay in shape for the United States Naval Academy.
- He went step by step on how to do a basic push-up with good form.
- Then he broke down harder styles, such as clap push-ups, handstand push-ups, and spiderman push-ups.
Following is a transcript of the video.
Joe Giannini: Hey, guys. Name is Joe, I’m a midshipman at the United States Naval Academy, and today we’re gonna do a push-up workout. We’re shooting for around 200 to 300 reps, and that’s what we normally do when I’m at school, which I’m not right now, so gonna do the best we can. Dude, I dunno how to vlog! Before we start today, I just wanna say thank you to everyone who’s keeping our country running right now, and second thing, my little brother just gave me a haircut. Please be merciful!
Brother: Stop with all the cameras, it’s making me nervous.
Joe: In the military especially, we get tested on our ability to do push-ups, sit-ups, and running. So this is one of the three pillars that we gotta work on. First up, I just wanna show you guys how to do a regular push-up with good form.
All right. So, for a basic push-up, you want your arms about shoulder-width apart. You want your feet out together, not standing apart like that. You wanna keep your elbows tucked in when you’re doing a push-up, so you don’t wanna flare out, you wanna come in, all the way down, break 90 degrees, come up, lock out at the top. 30 or 45 minutes at a time. 100 of those push-ups, and then you do that two or three different times a day. So it gives you a break in your day, and it gives you the volume that you want. We’re gonna try and do at least 100 regular push-ups in this workout.
From my personal experience, when you bow your arms out and really let your elbows flare, you’re relying a lot more on your back than you are your chest and your triceps, so. So, different types of push-ups work different muscles. So you can change the positions of your arms, you can change the positions of your legs, you can do both at the same time.
So, these push-ups are gonna be archers. It’s gonna work a lot more of the chest. You put your hands out super wide. As you go down, you’re gonna slowly slide out one hand. So I’m gonna go down to the right. And then we’re gonna press back up and bring that hand in. I’m only gonna do sets of about 10 of these, ’cause these are also really hard. I dunno how many I just did.
This is gonna be a diamond push-up. So you’re gonna line up your hands into the shape of a diamond. These are really hard. They’re gonna really bang out your triceps. You’re gonna keep your hands in, again, try and keep those elbows in, ’cause these are really hard.
So, these push-ups are gonna be spiderman push-ups. They work your entire upper chest, your triceps, and also your abs too. So you’re gonna go back to that basic push-up form, and then as you come down, try and keep your hips level. You’re gonna bring your leg up, touch your knee to your elbow, and then come back up. And then you’re gonna keep alternating sides.
So, this variation is gonna be called dive bombers. It’s a really good shoulder and ab workout. You’re gonna start out right here. You’re gonna come down, you’re gonna put your head under the fence, you’re gonna come through, extend all the way, and then you’re gonna go back. Pretend there’s a barbed-wire fence. You don’t wanna touch it. Come back up and press. These are a little bit of a harder variation, so I would probably only do 10 or 12 of these. Staying motivated is easy when you have a couple brothers like mine to work out with. I do sets of 10, you do four! Also, working out’s always been a good release for me.
So, these ones are gonna be pseudo planche. We’re gonna turn around our wrists. Really make sure you stretch out your forearms before you do this one. You’re gonna come down slowly. It’s really gonna work the biceps, so keep those elbows in tight all the way down, back up. Now, these are a little bit easier for me, so I’d probably do about 20 or 25 of these.
OK, so these guys are gonna be clap push-ups, I’m gonna be honest with you guys. I’m on cold cement, it hurts doing these, and they’re just really hard. So I’m not gonna do very many. Here we go.
So, out of sheer boredom, the most push-ups we’ve done in a day here is a little over 500. That’s definitely not normal, but it’s our version of fun.
These ones are gonna be just very, very slow push-ups. These are really good if you wanna work on, if you have a sticking point in your push-ups, or you just wanna get that nice muscular endurance. So, again, back to the basic form. It’s a negative, we call them count push-ups, whatever you wanna call them. And it’s super slow on the way down, and then super slow on the way back up. So, sing yourself a little song. Think about something. I don’t sing, I just think about lunch. Really motivates you to get through these. God, I could go for some lunch right now.
And then some handstand push-ups. Now, if you’re like me and your feet keep getting caught on the siding of your house, or you’re also like me and you’re just generally not good at these, shoot for 10, and anything around that would be awesome. These are really good for developing shoulders.
We’ve gone over a couple numbers here for sets of different variations, but when we’re doing, especially that basic push-up variation, the way we get tested and the way that I’ve personally gotten better is doing push-ups for time rather than a certain amount of reps. If you’re watching this video and you think you can’t do these push-ups or these push-up sets or these push-up styles, there’s always ways to scale them. So, even if you have to start doing push-ups on your knees with good form and you can only get three to five, that’s fantastic. Anytime you’re pushing yourself and getting better, that’s what we’re going for here. I hope this video has helped you in some way. You don’t need to bench-press a couch to stay healthy. I hope I proved that. Have a great day.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This video was originally published in May 2020.
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