Herschel Walker Workout Challenge

Herschel Walker Workout Challenge
Herschel Walker at 53 years old.

**I started journaling my progress with the Herschel Walker Workout Challenge in May 2015 and finally got around to finishing it. Just never published it till now. **

I do not remember how I heard about the Herschel Walker Workout Challenge. My best guess is I followed a link from Yahoo.

Upon reading how Herschel Walker has worked out most of his life I decided to take the Herschel Walker workout challenge. Well, not the full challenge but the half challenge. AKA – Half Herscheling.

To provide a brief summary of what Herschel Walker did from the time he was in junior high is this. He would do thousands of push ups, sit ups, and pull ups every day and has continue to do so his entire life. He did not start using weights until he was in the middle of his NFL career. Let that sink in.

I modified the Half As Good As Herschel Walker Workout Challenge to do 500 push ups, 500 sit ups, and 100 squats every day.

Any form of push up, sit up, and squat. Removed the sprinting part. Probably should have kept it. Do as many reps of each move as possible, take a break, and resume with the same move or something different. Whats most important is to get them done anytime throughout the day. Half in the morning. Half in the evening. You get the picture.

Here we go

Day 1 (5-2-15) 500/500/100 – Got them all done in the morning.

Day 2 500/500/100 – Woke up feeling pumped and a little sore. Especially in the abs.

Day 3  500/500/100 – Moved three shrubs to the backyard too. Ate and drank a lot of food.

Day 4 500/500/100 – Did lots of yard work. Burned over 4k calories.

Day 5 (5-5-15) 150/150  Felt exhausted this morning. Had a feeling before going to bed last night that I needed to eat a lot more. Woke up feeling exhausted from Herscheling and the last three days of yard work. Not counting this as a day off since I did do 150/150. I just need to split the difference over the next two days.

Day 6 500/500/100 – I’m realizing the need to get as many done within an hour of waking. Had 200/200 done by 7:30 am. Had 500/500 done by noon. Was able to do 30 push ups a couple different times.

Day 7 500/500/100 – Went golfing at Cattails for the first time. Didn’t want to be tired on the course so I did 100/100 before I left. Did notice a more balanced swing and felt much stronger in the core. Was making great contact today. Did 400/400/100 between 7-8pm. Did 40 push ups a couple of times. Only been a week and have doubled the amount of push ups I can do in a set.

Day 8 200/200 – Had such a great time golfing yesterday I decided to go again. Did 200/200 in the morning and went golfing at Tanglewood. Never been there before but was impressed. Was paired up with a guy who wanted to hit from the blues so I did too. Shot a 92 which is good for me. Made very good contact again. Core strength is helping out with posture which is helping the swing. Was planning on finishing up my 300/300/100 but Andrea surprised me upon getting home saying we were going out to dinner in Detroit. Then surprised me by saying at dinner we were going to see Hall & Oates. So I did not get my reps done.

Day 9 500/500/100 – Did 50 push ups twice. Am getting them all done in about 25% less the time.

Day 10 (5-10-15) Took my first full day off.

Day 11 500/500/100 – Didn’t miss a beat. Did 50 reps a couple of times.

Day 12 500/500/100 – Went golfing at Rackham in the morning for a customer appreciation tournament. Didn’t do any sets and really wish I did. It was 50 degrees and windy out. Was cold on the course. Didn’t feel loose like I did golfing last week. Played crappy. Put up a 95. I’m already in summer mode and it felt like 43 degrees out. Did all my sets at night between 7:30 and 8:40 while watching TV.

Day 13 (5-13-15) – 21/21. Yup – that’s it. 21 of each. On my 35th birthday of all days. Today was the first day since starting the Half-A-Herschel Walker Workout Challenge that my body felt overworked. Got to my 17th push up and it felt like my shoulder was about to tear or pop and my elbow flared up. Throw in my son waking up 45 minutes earlier on the day I watch him at home and it made for a tiring day.

Day 14 500/500/100 – Did 250/250 before golfing the very odd Dearborn Hills. They have no Par 5’s and 12 Par 3’s. Need to start stretching more. While I’m feeling stronger I do feel a bit tight in the upper body. Cranked out the remaining 250/250/100 around 7pm.

Day 15 100/100 – Did some in the morning and then started doing some chores around the house. The Huntington Woods Annual Garage Sale was going on and we had some stuff out. I was not manning the tables as my mom and Andrea were but my friend Dave called and said he was coming over with his daughter and beers. Hence I did no more once the beers started flowing for the rest of the evening.

Halftime Report

Including the two days off I would have needed to complete 6000 push ups, 6000 sit-ups, and 1200 squats to be on pace. I am at 5471/5471/1000. That puts me 529/529/200 away from being on pace. While I think its doable to add an extra 50 push ups and sit-ups a day on top of the 500 I’m supposed to do it reminds me how I’m only doing Half-A-Herschel and that I’m pacing at 40% Herschel. Somewhere out in the world a 52 year old man is doing 60% more than me on a day-to-day basis.

I am noticing a lot more core strength and just about everywhere else. Need to eat a lot more. Been more active outside of Herscheling and its taking up a lot of energy.

Day 16 500/500/100 – Felt a little fuzzy after yesterday’s activities. Did half in the morning and the rest in the evening. Kind of woke me up.

Day 17 (5-18-15) 200/200 – Did 100/100 in the morning and yard work from 9:30 am till 7:30pm. Didn’t pay attention to the time. My Fitbit said I did over 27,000 steps, walked 12.70 miles, burned 4,772 calories, and had 395 active minutes. Was pretty tired when I finally came in. After eating and cleaning up it was 9pm and I was exhausted. Dropped down and did 100/100. Thats all I had energy for.

Day 18 Nothing – Felt a little beat up and extremely hungry. Ate big meals all day. Been feeling very tight since starting the Herschel Walker workout challenge. Did P90X2 Recovery & Mobility to help. The Rumble Roller found knots everywhere. Was painful at times.

Day 19 550/550/100 – More energy today. Did 300/300 in the morning and 250/250/100 in the afternoon. Did some extra to catch up.

Day 20 (5-21-15) Nothing – Am really starting to need the recovery days now. Just didn’t have it in me to do any. Went golfing at Idyl Wyld in Livonia. Played ok. Drives are going further and am feeling much more power in my swing.

Day 21 500/500/100

Day 22 Nothing – Tigers game

Day 23 Nothing

Day 24 Nothing

Day 25 (5-26-2015) 100/100 – So here’s the deal. Every morning for the last three days it felt like my right shoulder was going to tear and my elbow was inflamed. Its been affecting my mood. Felt a bit lethargic and blobby. Doesn’t help I kind of fatted out in the eating department. Knew I had to try again today and got to 100/100 this morning but thats all I could do without feeling like I was going to injure myself.

Day 26 10/10 – Elbow is feeling shot.

Day 27 Nothing

Day 28 Nothing

Day 29 Nothing

Day 30 (5-31-2015) Nothing

A whole lot of not awesomeness happened over the last 9 nine days. My elbow and right shoulder were not up to the task. Should have done the sit-ups and squats but did not.

30 Day Totals

7331 push ups

7331 sit ups

1310 squats

30 Day Goals

15000 push ups

15000 sit ups

3000 squats

Final Results

15000 – 7331 = 7669 push ups short

15000 – 7331 = 7669 sit ups short

3000 – 1310 = 1690 squats short

Wow. Just when you think doing 7331 push ups is a lot you realize you did less than half your goal. Same with the sit ups and squats. Damn you Herschel Walker.

Final Thoughts

What I liked most about Herscheling is its simplicity. With me being a dad now it makes working out a little trickier. It’s not that I don’t have the time. Its that I can’t assume I’ll have that scheduled time every day with a 10 month old (**update 1-22-17: 2.5 and 1.5 year old**).

I did take a before and after photo and the only difference I could see was my chest looked bigger. Figure that. My visual results would have been better if I didn’t take those nine days off. Hence why I did not upload said before and after photo.

I do feel stronger even after having to rest. It really helped my golf game too. There is so much core being worked when Herscheling and that’s what a golf swing is all about.

While I love Beachbody workouts they are kind of a production. What I mean by production is you have to set aside time to do the workout. Set up your workout area. Get your workout equipment. Put in the dvd or fire up Beachbody on Demand. Take your pre-workout drink. Take a selfie. Then log your workout into the Super Gym at Team Beachbody or the My Challenge Tracker app.

Herscheling is different. You have a number of each moves your supposed to do for the day and you do them. Watching TV? Herschel. Looking around for something to do? Herschel. Done dicking around on the internet? Herschel.

If you want to be like my friend Joe who broke it down to “I need to do 50/50/10 over the next 10 hours and to hit that goal I will set an alarm to go off on my phone alerting me to Herschel. After each set I will bring up an excel spreadsheet and mark an X showing I completed it” than go ahead.

That is a bit much for me but if you are one of those types then go for it.

How long does it take to do 30 push ups, like 40 seconds? And 30 sit-ups takes 40 seconds. In 7 minutes you could do 100 push ups and 100 sit-ups. Do you have 35 minutes through out the day where you can do 500 push ups and 500 sit-ups along with 100 air squats? I bet you do.

What worked for me was as soon as I got moving in the morning I’d get 250/250 done which took me about 15 minutes to do. Then around noon I’d do 150/150. At 4 pm I would do the remaining 100/100/100. When you get half of them done before 8 am it makes all of this much easier.

I see Herscheling or doing something similar to it being apart of my life moving forward. It’s a very efficient workout plan that Mr. Walker has committed his life to. Clearly it works.

Doing every day when you have not done that many push ups in a day before is what got me. It’s not that I could not do that many it’s that it was too much too soon. Hats off to Mr. Walker for being able to do that many every day his entire life.

Might be that since he started doing this at an early age he was able to recover much faster. I’m in my mid 30s and the recovery time is what gets me. What my 9 rest days tells me is I indeed would have found more success if I did do it every other day. Stretching or yoga on the rest days would have reduced the tightness I was feeling.

That’s all I got. Was a good challenge. Was funny telling people I was Herscheling for 30 days.

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About the Author: Brad Gibala

Shreds Gnar. Hall & Oates Fan. Practicing Libertarian. Beachbody Coach. Detroit-ish. Contact - Start Here - About - Recommends

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