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  • Writer's pictureLauren Hass

Operation Push-Up


If you know me, you know I exercise pretty often. I rotate between tennis, running, Bodycombat and other classes at the gym. I would estimate that I do strength training classes once per week.

But even with all this great work, I was constantly frustrated by the fact that I was not able to do even one proper push-up. Where was all that muscle tone and strength I was building? Why was this basic exercise beyond my capabilities? And, interestingly, in looking around a class, almost 100% of women were doing modified push-ups. I would try a proper one from time to time, but always ended up back on my knees. Sigh.

This frustration came to a head in January 2022. After class one day, I asked the instructor if it was safer to remain on my knees, or if it was better to attempt a proper push-up but have poor form? She recommended the former. It was then that she offered to help me and so I made it my goal to learn how to do one proper push-up. Operation Push-Up was officially launched!

Operation Push-Up Attributes

  1. Myopic commitment to this one specific gym-related task.

  2. Accountability in the form of eight sessions with a personal trainer just to help me build enough strength to do a push-up.

  3. Sharing my goal with many people.

  4. Giving it an official name.

  5. Practicing my push-ups every single day for several months.

  6. Each time I felt that I couldn't do even one more, I forced myself to do two more.


So, how did I do? Success! By the summer of 2022, I was able to do 12 proper push-ups! I've fallen off of daily practicing recently; I can now do eight comfortably, and ten when I really push myself. I'm hoping this post reignites my commitment.

Push-Ups' Connection to Organizing?

The ability to do a proper push-up is a skill, as is organizing. Learning, practicing, sharing your goal with others -- these will all help you develop your habit, which is the key to goal-achieving success.

Is there a skill you'd like to develop? How will you get started, stay accountable, practice, and achieve success?

Also, can you do a proper push-up? If so, I'd love to know.

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