Run, Push-Up, Run! - Cube Dweller Fitness

Run, Push-Up, Run!

Okay so that isn’t the proper quote from Forest Gump. But it was the mantra pounding through my head as I did my workout. Run, push-up run.

Could this be a new trend in running. A form of running that will produce not only improved cardiovascular function, strong legs, but also a strong upper body. A balanced form of fitness that combines long range endurance and strength. Run, push-up, run.
[Image by

Push-up ImageCreative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License  by  Rafael Peñaloza 

Why Not Just Run?

I have never wanted to have a runners build. To me they appear emancipated(Yikes, thanks Taylor!) emaciated and weak. Sure what I’m really thinking about is a marathon runners build, sprinters have a different build.

For some this build might do the trick. To me these guys just look all out skinny. Sure they are fast and can keep going forever, but they are still skinny.

Paris Marathon by Josiah Mackenzie, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License  by  Josiah Mackenzie 

No thanks. While I know I need to start running longer distances to prepare for the upcoming Colorado Tough Mudder. I also know the event is littered with obstacles that will demand strength at the ready. I need to be able to run, then exert force to overcome the obstacles that come my way.

Just running … isn’t going to cut it.

My Run, Push-up, Run Program

Simple as the mantra is, so is the training program.

Run, then do push-ups, then Run more. Repeat the process, over, and over, and over.

My training yesterday was 16 intervals of three minutes of running (okay jogging, I’m not fooling anyone here), then a one minute rest. That rest period wasn’t really all rest since I first had to “drop and give me 20”. Yes I did twenty push-ups after each running interval.

It took me a while to realize the sheer volume of push-ups that this run, push-up, run workout demanded.

I completed 320 pushups.

Sure some guys can pound out hundreds at a time. Not me, so this still feels like a feat worth celebration. I ended up running over 5.7 miles, pounding out 320 pushups, and found two different places to do pullups along the route where I did sets of 8 each time.

Training For Tough Mudder – Turbulence Adventure Training
If you want a program to help you get ready for an adventure race, like the Tough Mudder. Or if you just want to get in the best condition of your life, then you may be interested in this program from Craig Ballantyne. Check out his Turbulence Adventure Training Program.

Why Do I Torment Myself?

All this left me wondering why? Why would I willingly choose this form of exercise? Why would I do this and … actually enjoy it?

I was left with the reality that somewhere deep down I am a hockey player. Most of my youth was spent with skates laced up tight. I played all year. That included spring leagues, fall leagues, summer leagues, regular season teams, and of course training camps.

Hockey is filled with intervals, intervals that demand full body strength and a cardiovascular system that can recover. I grew up training to go hard, recover, repeat.

But I also knew coaches that loved to push me. I can still recall running the halls of our high school after a full on-ice practice. We’d run, the drop for pushups at the coaches count.

It is no wonder that I still enjoy training that way. It is part punishment, part nostalgia. Either way run, push-up, run is a form of running that enjoy; call me insane if you like.

Run, push-up, run is a challenging full-body workout. Setup a heart rate monitor for intervals and give run, push-up, run a shot for your next workout.


Troy is the founder of Cube.Dweller.Fitness. He's an innovation catalyst in several areas of life including business, marketing, and process improvement. Outside of work he's actively involved in fitness, health, and living vibrantly in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.

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