If I do push ups using four sets like this: 40, 30, 20, 10 (100 in total), with 3 min intervals between sets...

Which of the following (A or B) would be more effective to do the next workout day (considering that muscles have recovered) if I want to gradually increase the max number of reps in a first set to a 100? And why? Would like to understand the principle, if there's any.

A: 50, 30, 20 (100 in total)


B: 50, 20, 20, 10 (100 in total)

  • Just to clarify, you're wanting a push-up endurance program that will allow you to perform 100 in succession and wan't to understand the principle of how your body achieves it?
    – AKDiscer
    Commented Dec 10, 2018 at 14:32
  • The goal is to eventually do 100 push-ups in a row( i.e. in one set). And I'm trying to figure out the best program for this (and understand why it would work). (Yes, I suppose it's anaerobic endurance). Currently I can do 100 push-ups in four sets, biggest set is just 40. I've to gradually increase the max number of reps. The biggest question currently is how to structure the sets. If you can expand the answer with explanation of other aspects of structuring the program I'd be more than happy to accept it.
    – Oleg
    Commented Dec 11, 2018 at 10:33

3 Answers 3


A few years ago my brother and I decided to do 300 push-ups for time competition. I used this app (roughly) and it’s program to train.

It tests your current max, and adjusts the plan accordingly.

Runtastic Push-Ups PRO Trainer by runtastic https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/runtastic-push-ups-pro-trainer/id570180361?mt=8


C: max, max, max, max

Seriously, if you want to be able to do 100 straight push-ups, just max out on every set. Eventually you will increase the number of reps per set you can do until you reach your desired amount.


If you want to do 100 pushups in one set, your total of 4 sets should be more (quite a bit) than 100.

You should do as many as you can on your first set (say 50). Then the target for each subsequent set should be the same (50). Do as many as you can until you're just about at failure, then drop your knees down and keep going until you get to 50. If you do this for 4 sets then you've done about 200 pushups, plus you've trained your muscles past failure. It will be hard and you'll feel the burn in your chest, but you will progress much faster.

It will also help to mix up different variations, close hands, wide hands, triangle, isometric holds, slow reps, etc.

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