I have a friend on my Facebook profile, the social network of 1 billion people on earth. He had posted a challenge of doing 25 push-ups for 25 days. It’s been years that we could actually get to speak to each other. He’s been on my profile for a long time. But, I guess, you need a connection to share. We both belonged to the same joining batch in my previous workplace. After leaving the place, it was only a few likes every now and then.
This challenge brought us talking to each other. He was doing the challenge to bring home the message on mental health. I loved this idea, “Suicide is not the solution”. And so, I asked him if I could help the cause in any way to create mental awareness. I have become a votary of mental health. I can understand the importance of mental health as I have my own story of suffering from depression a few years ago. He replied back to me by putting me on the challenge.
I didn’t expect this. I am a runner. I am no pro at push-ups or exercises. But, the cause and the challenge, I loved both. I thought, “No harm in trying”. So, I did!
The first day of the challenge
I came after the run to my little garden where I sit and cool down and do my crunches and a little meditation after that. I asked my son to get me the tripod to mount my mobile phone camera. In the meantime, I went into my flashback and recalled how miserable I was at push-ups. Back in those days, we used to compete against each other for push-ups and pull-ups. I remember I would reach 5 push-ups with maximum efforts. Beyond that, it was an impossible task for me.
In the past 2.5 years that I have put myself on a sole mission to become a marathon runner, I have discovered newer capabilities in me. I have understood that giving a thing a shot is no big deal. It is highly affordable. You never know what you may discover in the process. I learned this while pushing myself at 2 km to discover 42 km one day. So, here I was – mentally prepared for a mental health challenge.
I started with placing my hands in position and lowering my body, horizontally aligned to the ground. I could feel the comfort. There was no body part under any kind of stress. I felt good about it. The next deal was to keep my position upright. Running has brought a lot of flexibility to my body. I could sense that my overall body posture was just in the right place.
And so, I started to do – push-ups
The challenge starts
push-up 3,4,5. When I reached 5, I was feeling great. Wow! Done with 5 push-ups. Then, I told my mind, “look at doing in the sets of 5.” So, the next destination became:
8,9,10 – God, I was feeling alright even now. There was no feeling of exertion so far. It was good to go further. So, I told my mind, “Let us for the next set of 10”. And so,
Push-ups 10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19…& 20
The challenge Deepens
Wow! I could not believe. I have done…..20!! Holy Cow!!
However, I did start to feel the stress in the front and above portion of my body. I started to feel the pressure by no 15. I had left the mark 10 and told my mind to be at 20 before, I cowed-down. Though I found difficulty in moving further, I was confident about my body. I was telling myself, “ an endurance runner who had crushed a marathon a few months before- yes, you are the one!!
So, I told myself, “Let’s keep going. Whatever you do will be yours forever. You are already beyond your college mark– way beyond and you are going to create history for yourself”
The Challenge intensifies and the final moments
At mark 20, I looked up in the camera. I was still there to do another 5 for day 1 of 25 push-ups challenge. Would I do it?
The last 5 were the most challenging. I did not do them as I was supposed to: I did push-up 21 and 22 with great difficulty. My breathing and heart rate had gone up. My biceps and triceps were feeling the pain. The shoulders were jammed for any more movement. And so, my legs also dropped down. I went flat at mark 22.
But, a glorious day awaited me for today’s performance. Never had I done this kind of magic to my body ever before. It was like new dawn happening to me. So, Closing my eyes and opening my mind, I took on the fiercest battle of the moment. I said to myself, “Take few breaths and then go for the final assault. Seize the day”.
I got up in the same position and started moving myself.
Push-up 23, done.
Push-up 24. Done
and Push Up ..25!!!!! I did it.
And it’s all heroic to me now. I did it. I did my 25 push-ups on day 1.
I made it to the Push-up no 25 in over 2 minutes.
You won’t know your limits until you push them hard. And yet to discover, there are none.SANJURUNS
I am now done with 13 days challenge and now on the downhill. I will place the pics and update the post once I am done with the full challenge.
If you found some moments in this piece heart-felt, you can place them in the comments section below.
a runner, a fitness enthusiast