The Prince of Pushups: Part 2

Dear Michael,

Months into it, you were already nearing 100 pushups, a remarkable milestone, and then you passed it and kept right on going.

Mom and I marveled at your pursuit of this holy grail, even as we found it puzzling. For example, your whole routine was pushups. No running, no crunches, no jumping jacks or lunges or squats or curls or presses or yoga. Just pushups, classic pushups, still perhaps the single best all-around strength training available.

But so what? You kept putting up those big numbers day after day, your smile of self-satisfaction ever-wider. I forget the context, whether you had a girlfriend around or were doing well in school or had your friendships with Mike and others. But again, so what? Somewhere along the line, you had made up your mind to do as many pushups as possible.

You reached 110, 115, 120. Unreal. You’d now registered almost four times more pushups than I had ever done, leaving me, as you had with your running, in the dust. You had decided you were going to do what you were going to do, and now, come hell or high water, you were doing it, showing a will that refused to waver.

Finally, one day you came out to tell us you had hit 125 pushups, and I squeezed your biceps in admiration. You’d gone as far as you could go, farther than any of us, including you, ever expected. You’d done more pushups than all but a few men on the planet ever could do.
I just hope you learned your lesson well. If you can do 125 pushups, you can do anything.

P.S. — Last year Michael set a new record of 183 pushups.

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