No Excuses workout 11

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Combining cardio work with a simple bodyweight exercise such as the press-up creates a demanding total-body challenge that simultaneously improves endurance and strength. This workout is against the clock so it will also test your ability to keep going when the pressure is on and people are waiting for you to get out of the way in a busy gym. Your task is to complete 300 press-ups as quickly as possible with a bit of rowing thrown in for good measure.

The workout

You start the workout by rowing 300m as fast as you can. However long this takes is the time you have to complete as many press-ups as possible. In other words, if the row takes you 56sec, that's how long you have to do as many press-ups as you can. Repeat this process until you've completed 300 press-ups.

There's a catch, however. If you take longer than 60sec to finish the 300m row, for each additional second you must perform one straight-arm burpee before you even think about starting the press-ups. This eats into your press-up time though, because the clock starts as soon as you step off the rower.

Exercise guides

Press-up Ensure that every rep goes through the full range of movement. Keep your lower back strong by bracing your gut and your butt as you push from the floor, especially in the latter stages of the workout.

Straight-arm burpee From standing, place both your hands on the floor outside your feet. Drive both legs out behind you, keeping the glutes tight. Return by driving your feet back towards your hands, and then jump up with your hands above your head.

Rowing Set a distance of 300m on the rowing machine and give it 100% until you've completed it. Driving with your legs and then using your arms at the end will make your leg and back muscles do most of the work, giving your arms some respite for the press-ups.

Next month: The barbell 100 challenge

Andy McKenzie

Andy McKenzie is a UKSCA accredited strength coach, and a strength and conditioning specialist.