Drop and Give Me 10: Positive Reinforcement?

Let me preface this by saying that technically, or at least to the best of my knowledge, I am not from a military family; however, pushups make me nostaligic in an odd military brat way. Push-up were my step-grandfather’s (“Gramps”) prefered form of punishment for the boys in my family, and by “boys” I mean my cousin Jonathan.

My sister and I always saw it coming, would wait, and then maniacally laugh as Gramps would spout off random numbers while my cousin did push-ups to the seemingly random numerical count and then after about seven or eight push-ups, Gramps would announce that that was all equal to ONLY one push-up…only nine or potentially 70 more to go.

“Family Fun From Us to You” memories*: “47, 52, 33, 77, 64, 12, 98…ONE” – Gramps

Elayne and I loved it and still joke about this punishment technique until this day. Although I’m no longer intouch with my cousin – I hear he is muscular and in the military….the role he was born/punished to play.

I personally love push-ups and don’t regard them as a punishment. I grew up doing various forms: standard, salutes, clap push-ups, diamonds, and fisted on top of bricks (well – at least until my mother found out and embarrassed my sister and me by having a “motherly word” with our karate Sensei and informing him that we were girls and needed to have pretty hands – I thank her daily when I thumb through my hand modeling portfolio).

On Monday,  when a good friend of mine suggested a “negative reinforcement” challenge I eagerly jumped on board. So for the next 10 weeks – whenever we engage in particular forbidden behaviors or utilize specific words – we have to drop and give each other 10…wherever we are.

Check out some awesome push-up variations by a buddy of mine Kodjo who I met back in 2005, definitely follow him on YouTube and Twitter – he has some great workouts posted.

Grew-up doing Number 5: Explosive clap push-ups – and after all these years -it is still my favorite.

Can’t wait to try the Prison Cell and Sphinx push-ups.

This negative reinforcement is actually positive in the sense that I think that in 10 weeks my friend will look great (I would compliment how I may potentially look – but that could possibly result in 10 push-ups and I did biceps and triceps this morning at 6:45 – so my arms are killing me) and he will have kicked a negative habit/trait. My goal out of this is to modify some behaviors, spontaneously workout, and hopefully be able to manage a few reps of handstand push-ups by the end of the month.

I strongly encourage you to grab a few friends and make little challenges like this – it really is entertaining.



*Our family home movies always had delightfully cheesy titles such as: “Family Fun From Us To You” and “Watch Leilani Grow” (the latter title was cursed – since I am 4’11 and 3/4). Also, Elayne and I were never punished by Gramps because we were model children…and always made Jonathan do our dirty work HA.


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