But before we get to pushups…
The speed at which you walk, for example, can be eerily predictive of health status. In a study of nearly 35,000 people aged 65 years or older in the Journal of the American Medical Association, those who walked at about 2.6 feet per second over a short distance—which would amount to a mile in about 33 minutes—were likely to hit their average life expectancy. With every speed increase of around 4 inches per second, the chance of dying in the next decade fell by about 12 percent.
And then there’s grip strength (yes, your grip strength is an indicator of health).
Now we come to pushups.
From the article: In a study, Stefanos Kales, a professor at Harvard Medical School, noticed that the leading cause of death of firefighters on duty was not smoke inhalation, burns, or trauma, but sudden cardiac death.
Kales’s lab looked at push-ups. He found that they were an even better predictor of cardiovascular disease than a submaximal treadmill test. “The results show a strong association between push-up capacity and decreased risk of subsequent cardiovascular disease,” Kales says.
And later in the article:
Unlike BMI, push-ups and the like tend to encourage people to be conscious of what the body can achieve, not body image itself. Conscientiousness, Joyner says, means seeing a connection between how you live and what happens later, and behaving accordingly.
More than pecs or triceps, push-ups build conscientiousness.
Get down and give me 20 now!