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Bodyweight Workout: “One Inch at a Time”

By February 26, 2016Exercise and Workouts
Reading Time: 2 minutes
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“One Inch at a Time” introduces an interesting and rewarding push-up variation: the inchworm push-up.

Combining the strength requirement of a classic push-up with the flexibility (and core control requirements) of yoga’s downward facing dog, the movement is novel and fun, and provides a hard-to-match physical challenge.

The Bodyweight Workout

In 20 minutes, you’ll do as many rounds as possible of the prescribed inchworm push-ups and lunges for your fitness level. One round for each level is:

  • Beginner: 6 Inchworm Push-ups, 12 Lunges
  • Intermediate: 8 Inchworm Push-ups, 16 Lunges
  • Advanced: 10 Inchworm Push-ups, 20 Lunges

Your score will be the total number of rounds you complete within the 20-minute window. To succeed at this one, you’ll want to pick a pace that allows you to keep moving with a minimum of rest (so don’t start out too quickly).

Movement Tips

To perform an inchworm push-up:

  1. Bend at the waist and put your hands on the ground in front of you.
  2. Leaving your feet where they are, walk your hands forward until you are in a classic push-up position, arms straight.
  3. Do a push-up.
  4. Leave your hands where they are, and walk your feet to your hands. If possible, keep your legs straight.
  5. Without returning to standing, repeat the sequence, walking your hands forward, performing a push-up, and then walking your feet to your hands.
  6. For counting purposes, each repetition ends when you do the push-up.

To reduce the difficulty of the inchworm push-up, you have several options:

  • Reduce the range of motion. Instead of walking your feet all the way to your hands at the end of the sequence, only walk them half way forward.
  • Put your knees on the ground during the push-up.

To perform a lunge:

  1. Start at standing with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Stride forward with a single leg, keeping the other leg in place.
  3. Bend your front knee and back knee simultaneously until the back knee gently touches the ground. Your front knee should be stacked directly over your ankle when you reach the bottom, and your torso should remain vertical. Keep your hands off your legs and hips.
  4. Return to standing.  This is one rep.
  5. Repeat with the other leg.

To reduce the difficulty of the lunge:

  • Keep your hands on your hips, allowing your arms to help keep your torso stabilized.

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Jon Gilson
Jon Gilson is a coach and writer, and the former CEO of the Whole Life Challenge.

Previously, he founded Again Faster Equipment, a functional fitness equipment company created to serve the CrossFit community. Established in 2006, Jon took the Company global in 2012, twice landing on the Inc. 500/5000 list of America’s fastest growing private companies.

From 2007 to 2013, he served as a Senior Lecturer for CrossFit, Inc., training aspiring CrossFit trainers at over 100 seminars, including engagements in Iceland, Afghanistan, Moscow, Holland, the United States, and Canada. Jon also served on the CrossFit L1 Advisory Board, helping establish policy for the organization’s training efforts from 2011 to 2013.

He’s also done stints in state government, gym management, and consulting — and currently teaches classes at CrossFit City Line.

Jon graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2003, summa cum laude, with a B.A. in Psychology. He also holds a Graduate Certificate in Finance and Control from the Harvard Extension School, 2006, and has completed coursework in data analytics.