Rack Up Time-Under-Tension With This Typewriter Pushup Challenge

Yes, your average, standard pushup can help you build chest size and strength, but if there’s an issue with it, here it is: It only blasts your chest in one plane. Your muscles are meant to have strength and lend stabilization laterally as well, instead of just pushing you off the ground.

You’ll build that lateral strength (and challenge your entire chest) in Typewriter Pushup Countup Hell, an anytime, anywhere chest day finisher from Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S. It’s a move that has you building plenty of traditional chest pushing power as you press up on every archer pushup, but it also has you racking up time-under-tension while moving your torso laterally through space. “You’re building chest strength in two planes,” says Samuel, “and stressing your chest fibers in multiple ways.”

Every set winds up taking around a minute, most of which is spent with your chest just inches from the ground, a position that means triceps, shoulders, pecs, and abs never get to turn off. “They’re constantly maintaining a contraction,” says Samuel, “and adjusting that contraction to the changing demands of the situation as you slide your torso from position to position.”

Just a few reps will push you to your limit. And the best part: It’s a move you can do anywhere, without any equipment.

Typewriter Pushup Countup Hell works well as a chest day finisher, either in a bodyweight workout or a gym workout. It can also work as the chest portion of a total body workout. The key, says Samuel, is not rushing. “Take your time,” he says. “People tend to rush across, but work to feel everything, constantly checking in with your torso to make sure you’re only an inch from the ground.”

Don’t do that here. Expect each set to take a full minute or more; if it doesn’t you’re rushing. And you don’t want to rush. You want to feel this burn.

For more tips and routines from Samuel, check out our full slate of Eb and Swole workouts. If you want to try an even more dedicated routine, consider Eb’s New Rules of Muscle program.

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