PUSH IT REAL GOOD

An INTRODUCTORY STRENGTH TRAINING PROGRAM to get started weight training and using progressive overload with bands and dumbbells. 

PUSH IT REAL GOOD

An INTRODUCTORY STRENGTH TRAINING PROGRAM to get started weight training and using progressive overload with bands and dumbbells. 

Do you want to...

• Build strength and learn how to use progressive overload, but aren't sure where to start?

• Start weight training, but feel intimidated by lifting heavy and are afraid you might get hurt?

• Strength train, but have mobility limitations or a history of pain or injury that makes some movements feel inaccessible?

or...

Are you a Pilates or yoga teacher who wants to learn how to incorporate strength training with dumbbells into your personal movement practice and gain new tools to help your students build strength + mobility with less pain?

If so, I gotchu. 

I partnered with strength coach and licensed Physical Therapy Assistant Meghan Ramos to create PUSH IT REAL GOOD, a simple whole body strength and mobility program with dumbbells and bands for people who are new to strength training or are coming back after an injury. 

Ready to get strong?

$149*

*sales tax applicable for WA residents

Add to cart

Cart closes July 2, 2022 at 11:59 PST

WHAT'S INCLUDED IN PUSH IT?

The PUSH IT REAL GOOD Strength Training Program

This 12 week FULL BODY program gives you everything you need to get started weight lifting, and build strength using equipment found in most gyms OR at home. These workouts are designed to be effective + joint friendly with a minimal time commitment. 

All you need to get started are a lighter and heavier set of dumbbells, a couple jumpstretch bands, and a pull-up bar!

The PUSH IT REAL GOOD Strength Training Program includes:

  • 3 months of progressive strength programing with 3 weekly full body strength training workouts using dumbbells, a jumpstretch band, and a pull-up bar that can be completed in 40 to 60 minutes (We recommend doing at least 2 of the strength workouts per week. The 3rd day is optional)
  • Modifications for many of the exercises in the program to help you navigate cranky knees, wrists, or shoulders.
  • A "Getting Started" section, with recommendations for equipment, cardio, recovery, and weight selection.
  • Video tutorials for every exercise in the program, so you're never left guessing
  • A PDF exercise glossary with pictures and instructions for every exercise in the program
  • A printable workout tracker, so you can log all your weights and track your progress
Program
ExerciseGlossary
Workout

The program also comes with...

3 BONUS Coaching Calls over ZOOM with Nikki and Meghan + a private facebook group!

We scheduled these calls to give you some additional support and guidance as you work through the program.

The program is blocked out, so you will do the same 2 to 3 workouts for one month at a time before progressing to a more complex version of the exercises. This is why there is one call a month.

During each call, we will discuss the exercises for the workouts in the upcoming month, answer any questions about weight selection or form, and educate you on an aspect of strength training reduce the learning curve.

Call # 1 | Sunday July 17 from 9 to 10:30 am PST: Topics covered include how to pick the right weight, understanding soreness and what to feel, how progressive overload works, ways to adapt or modify the program, and exercise / program Q & A

Call # 2 | Sunday August 14 from 9 to 10:30 am PST: Topics covered include nutrition considerations for strength training, how to progress your weight, overview of the next month of workouts, and exercise / program Q & A

Call #3 | Sunday Sept 11 from 9 to 10:30 am PST: Pursuing strength long term / what to do next, overview of the next month of workouts, and exercise / program Q & A

Can't make the live calls? You will have a chance to submit your questions in advance and a replay will be sent to you that is yours to keep forever!

There will also be a private facebook group where you can post videos for form checks or ask questions if you get stuck on what modification to pick or need clarification about a workout.

Plus you'll get...

PushUpBook_PAGES

The PUSH IT REAL GOOD digital book

This 100+ page, beautifully illustrated e-book explains in simple language how your joints are supposed to move and why you might have wrist, shoulder, elbow, or upper back pain when you workout.

While it uses the push-up as an example of a popular exercise that many of us struggle with to illustrate these ideas, this book is NOT just about push-ups. Rather, it explains how to apply these movement concepts to an exercise to troubleshoot joint discomfort and improve posture and movement mechanics.

The PUSH IT REAL GOOD digital book also includes: 

  • Self assessments to help you identify where you need to work on mobility and strength
  • Stability and mobility routines to address upper back, shoulder, wrist, and elbow discomfort
  • Videos for all of the routines outlined in the book

And it has been formatted to be easily read on a phone or tablet.

Ready to get strong?

$149*

*sales tax applicable for WA residents

Add to cart

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The story behind PUSH IT REAL GOOD

To say that strength didn't come intuitively to me is an understatement.

I started teaching high impact, high intensity group fitness classes in college. By the time I was 25, I was debilitated with chronic pain.

This set me down a path of pursuing "gentler" modalities and ways to manage my pain. I turned my attention to teaching and practicing Pilates, because it wasn't so hard on my body. I started taking yoga classes on the side. I spent 5 years studying massage and bodywork techniques.

However, it didn't matter what type of massage I received or how many stability / Pilates reformer / yoga movements I practiced. I still had pain. My wrists and shoulders felt awful in planks and push-ups. I had SI joint pain after nearly every yoga or Pilates class I tok. My back ached when I walked longer than 30 minutes, and to add insult to injury, I could feel myself getting weaker.

I decided that if I was going to live with pain, I might was well be strong. I started following a strength training program with dumbbells not with a desire to fix myself, but with the intention of getting stronger.

3 months later I was surprised to find that my joints felt significantly better. A year later, I no longer had constant pain, I'd greatly increased my physical capacity, and I no longer needed to rely on regular bodywork and ball rolling to manage my chronic muscle tension and discomfort. They were simply tools that felt nice.

When I reflected back on WHY it took me so long to pursue strength, I noticed a few barriers to entry.

  • No one had every explained to me WHY strength training was so valuable. Before starting, I saw it something for bodybuilders and bros, when really it was essential for preserving muscle and bones. I was also unaware how helpful it was for reducing pain and injury for many people and I never realized how powerful it was for helping me feel capable in my body.
  • The way strength training modeled to me felt really intimidating. Given my hypermobility, pain, and history of injury, I couldn't see myself slinging tires like a crossfit athlete or deadlifting 200 lbs. I had no idea that you could start with less weight and simple, low impact movements.
  • With my background in Pilates and mind body movement, the "language" of strength didn't make sense to me. So much of what I had learned was about precise placement of joints with very little load and repetitions. I didn't understand progressive overload and how getting stronger would actually reduce my experience of pain and injury.

 

So I created PUSH IT to bridge the gap and help more people discover strength without the intimidation factor.

Originally, PUSH IT was just going to be a book about how to use stability and mobility to manage rib flares and troubleshoot wrist and shoulder pain in planks and push-ups.

However, after writing the book, I realized that while understanding how your upper body moves and the role of stability, mobility, and strength was beneficial, what would be MOST valuable was teaching you how to progressively build strength with these principles in mind.

This is why PUSH IT includes an e-book that explains these things through the lens of troubleshooting upper body pain during exercise, but the MAIN emphasis is the PUSH IT strength training program that introduces you to the primary strength exercises and utilizes progressive overload. It's everything I wish I'd known sooner that has made the biggest difference in my and my client's lives.

PUSH IT REAL GOOD is the program I wish I'd had when I started strength training.

Weight training doesn't have to be painful or scary. If you know where to start and pick the right exercise progressions it can be the perfect complement to what you're already doing or a great place to start when returning to exercise.

And if even if you have a history of ouchy joints, there are still exercises you can do. In fact, with the right modifications, you might be surprised by how capable you already are!

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Ready to build MORE strength with LESS hurt?

Sign up for PUSH IT REAL GOOD today!

$149*

*sales tax applicable for WA residents

Add to cart

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Still not sure about strength?

Let's talk about the value of progressive overload and learning to lift "heavier.

In layman's terms, progressive overload is gradually increasing how much weight you use or the number of reps you do when strength training to help your muscles and bones get stronger.

Progressive overload works best when you utilize weights (e.g. dumbbells, kettlebells, machines, or barbells) through a program where you practice the same exercises for a set number of weeks. While these modalities have other benefits, you can't do this with Pilates, yoga, or light bands, because they aren't designed to create these adaptations.

When you're a beginner, you won't be lifting massive weights. You'll be mastering technique and using weights that feel appropriate for your current level of strength. Push It is designed to teach you how to do this and will help you master strength training technique while giving you the opportunity to progress in weight as you get stronger.

The end result? More strength with less pain or fear of injury and if you stick with it, you'll find that you really CAN lift heavier than you might have thought. You just need the right progressions AND time!

Benefits of following a strength program that uses progressive overload

Strength

I know #duh, but here me out. Anything can make you "stronger," but this is the kind of strength that results in being able to pick up heavy grocery bags with ease.

It makes ANY kind of activity (running / golfing / hiking / gardening) feel easier, because when your muscles are stronger you don't get as tired. It's really hard to do this without relying on some sort of programming that uses weights and is designed with these progressions in mind.

Less Pain and Injury

Pain is complex, so strength won't necessarily be a cure all. However, we know is that the stronger you are, the harder it is to overload your joints. This may mean less pain or fewer injuries. Strength also creates a sense of safety for your nervous system, which may mean fewer "flare-ups" though it depends.

And if you're thinking, but I'll hurt myself! This is why you learn the basic technique first with a weight you can manage right now. Hence, why it's progressive. 😉

Stability and Mobility

If you have a lot of pain or an injury, you should see a physical therapist and may benefit from additional exercises outside of strength, but contrary to popular belief, strength training IMPROVES your stability and mobility / flexibility.

Why? When you're stronger with reasonable technique, it's harder to go "out" of joint and when you're stronger your nervous system will often let you go into BIGGER ranges of motion, because it senses that you can control that end range.

PUSH IT REAL GOOD will give you the tools get started weight lifting - even if you’ve never picked up a dumbbell before or need considerations for a history of injury.

Ready to do this?

$149*

*sales tax applicable for WA residents

Add to cart

 

Cart closes July 2, 2022 at 11:59 PST

What others are saying:

"I absolutely loved the Push It Real Good program! I feel so much stronger, more stable, and tasks are so much easier! I was about 18 months postpartum with my second kid when I started Push It and one of my big motivators was to be able to lug my growing toddler around and not feel weak, unstable, or achy. This program has really helped me build my confidence in my body's strength and has been so much fun. It's well organized and the progressions WORK.

I loved being able to do the workouts at home without needing to add tons of equipment to my little home gym. I did have to buy more weights... because I GOT STRONGER and needed heavier ones! This is a great entry point to strength training or an awesome option for those with more experience who want well laid out workouts and trouble shooting guides to progress you to rocking your push-up and strength exercises!"

Vanessa G.
Certified Pilates Teacher

Gotta Question? Find the answer here.

How long do I have access to the program?

The program is direct download of PDFs with links to the video library. Once you download it, it’s yours to keep forever. Just make sure you back it up on your cloud if you don’t want to lose it. 😉

What weights and bands should I start with?!

This is impossible for us to answer, because weights are entirely dependent on your current level of strength and the specific exercise that you’re practicing. However, here are some guidelines.

If you are doing the program in a gym, which we recommend if possible, the best way for you to choose a weight is to pick some dumbbells that seem reasonable, try the exercise and feel it out. Not knowing what weight to choose is normal and part of the process. It’s okay to experiment!

You will know you have the right weight if you can feel the target muscle group by the third or fourth rep and if you are tired at the end of your prescribed number of reps where you could do around 2 more with good form. If you can’t finish the prescribed number of repetitions the weight is probably too heavy. If you could do 5 more reps after you’re done, then the weight is too light.

If you are buying weights for at home, you might still need to try this for a few exercises. However, you will probably want to start with something like an 8 to 10 lb set of dumbbells AND a 15 or 20 lb set of dumbbells. This means you would have two 8 lb dumbbells AND two 20 lb dumbbells.

However, it’s entirely possible that you might need heavier OR lighter weights. It’ll just depend on you. Many women underestimate their abilities though, so it’s unlikely you’ll need less than 8 lb weights. 😉

The strength and conditioning component of this program will require:

  • Medium jumpstretch band (possibly a light or heavy jumpstretch band. It depends on your current level of strength!)
  • Ideally a set of “light,” “medium” and “heavy” dumbbells. It’s fine if you start with just 2 sets of dumbbells, but it’s nice to have options!) Light usually = a set of 8-12 lb dumbbells, heavier usually = a 15 to 25 lb set of dumbbells. Again it depends on YOUR current level of strength and the exercise.
  • A looped / mini band in extra light or light resistance (again you may need heavier. It just depends!)
  • A pull-up bar.
  • A bench or box – though you can probably use a sturdy chair if you are doing this at home.

There is the option to use a suspension trainer (e.g. a TRX or Olympic Rings), but it is NOT required to complete the program!

For many of the exercises, you have the option of using dumbbells, a band, OR a suspension trainer, so depending on what equipment you have on hand + would like to invest in, it’s possible that you could do the program at home.

The program also comes with equipment recommendations, if you’d like to purchase equipment for home use.

All of this equipment, with the exception of the jumpstretch band and looped band, can easily found in most commercial gyms.

You mentioned that I have to lift heavy to increase muscle mass + bone density, but what does that mean and what if I’m not ready to lift heavy weights?

Without getting overly technical, you have to lift substantially more weight than what you might in daily life to stimulate bone or muscle growth or to preserve what you have.

However, how much weight is relative to your current level of strength and conditioning. We’re not going to have you lift a weight that you are not ready for. When we say “heavy” all we mean by that is that it feels physically challenging (but not painful) by the time you’ve hit 5 to 8 repetitions, depending on the exercise.

Beyond that, if an exercise is not appropriate for you, there are numerous ways to adapt it and modify it, so it makes sense for your current level of mobility and strength.

In short, it’s possible to challenge your muscles and your body without practicing exercises that make your joints feel terrible.

Do I need a gym membership to follow this program? What equipment do I need?

We recommend doing this program at the gym where you will be able to explore which weights to use and will have access to increasingly heavier weights.

However, we understand that you may prefer to follow the program at home. That’s fine!

The strength and conditioning component of this program will require:

  • Medium jumpstretch band (possibly a light or heavy jumpstretch bandIt depends on your current level of strength!)
  • Ideally a set of “light,” “medium” and “heavy” dumbbells. It’s fine if you start with just 2 sets of dumbbells, but it’s nice to have options!) Light usually = a set of 8-12 lb dumbbells, heavier usually = a 15 to 25 lb set of dumbbells. Again it depends on YOUR current level of strength and the exercise.
  • A looped / mini band in extra light or light resistance (again you may need heavier. It just depends!)
  • A pull-up bar.
  • A bench or box – though you can probably use a sturdy chair if you are doing this at home.

There is the option to use a suspension trainer (e.g. a TRX or Olympic Rings), but it is NOT required to complete the program!

For many of the exercises, you have the option of using dumbbells, a band, OR a suspension trainer, so depending on what equipment you have on hand + would like to invest in, it’s possible that you could do the program at home. The program also comes with equipment recommendations, if you’d like to purchase equipment for home use.

However, all of this equipment, with the exception of the jumpstretch band and looped band, can easily found in most commercial gyms.

The mobility and stability routines in the e-book require little to no equipment and could easily be done at home.

How many times a week are the workouts? What are the workouts like?

This program includes 3 full body workouts a week that we would recommend doing on non-consecutive days (e.g. Monday / Wednesday / Friday).

If you are limited on time or find that you are easily fatigued, then you have the option of completing workouts 1 and 2 each week and skipping the 3rd workout.

Each workout will take 40 to 60 minutes for most people including the warm-up. They will target all of the major muscle groups and you will often see options for different versions of the exercise using dumbbells or a band. There are also TRX / suspension trainer options for some of the exercise, but a suspension trainer is NOT required to complete the program! All of these workouts are low impact. There is no jumping or fast movements.

I have some pain and old injuries. Can I follow this program?

Without knowing your history, it’s impossible for me to answer this. However, here’s some info that can help you make a more informed choice. This program offers a lot of options and modifications and was designed with people who have “stuff” in mind, so outside of a private session, this is probably one of the more “history of pain” friendly programs that you are likely to find.

It will include basic exercises like squats, bridges, and push-ups (with all the modifications including wall push-ups), so if you think that you can handle these movements with any weight of your choosing, then the program is probably fine for you to try.

If you have so much pain that you are unable to safely get up and down off of the floor though, then this program is not for you and you should consult a medical provider for diagnosis and treatment.

Can PUSH IT REAL GOOD replace physical therapy?

The short answer is no. I’m a lot of things, but I’m not a physical therapist and I can’t fix you.

PUSH IT is for you, if:

  • You’ve been cleared to exercise by your doctor or physical therapist and you’re looking for a transition back to regular exercise after successfully completely rehabilitation from an injury.
  • You have pain or an old injury, but they are well managed and you are looking for a strength training program that has modifications for you to work around these issues.
  • You want to get started strength training in a smart and progressive way while mitigating your risk of injury

PUSH IT is not for you, if:

  • You have ongoing, undiagnosed and untreated pain.
  • You suspect you have an underlying trauma or injury, but have not consulted a medical professional about it.
  • You have not been cleared to exercise by your doctor or physical therapist.

Please note that if you have any questions or concerns about starting a new fitness program or you have ongoing or unmanaged chronic pain, it is recommended that you consult a medical professional.

I’m SO busy. How long are the workouts? Do I have enough time for this?

Only you will know the answer to this. However, this program is what I would call the minimal time commitment to see measurable results in strength. Ideally, you will perform a least 2 of the strength workouts per week. Each workout will take most people 40 minutes to an hour including the warm up.

If you are practicing the optional mobility routines in the Push It e-book, which is not required, they will each take about 20 minutes and can be done in conjunction with the strength program or on rest days. Whatever fits best in your schedule!

Can this program help me lose weight or get ripped? I want muscles!

Fat loss typically requires changing your approach to nutrition. With this in mind, Push It is NOT a weight loss program and does not offer nutrition advice beyond what we will cover in the bonus call, which will emphasize how to eat to support your training and will not cover weight loss.

Additionally, it would take more than 12 weeks to put on large amounts of muscle and the program is designed to emphasize strength, so while some people *may* experience a slight increase in muscle mass, following this program won’t get you “ripped.”

That being said, strength training has been found to promote changes in body composition and improve muscle mass / tone, which could contribute to having more muscle definition over time.

I want to be toned, but don’t want to get bulky! Will this program do that to me?

While everyone’s body responds to strength training differently, this is fairly unlikely – though it also depends on how you define “bulky.” If you strength train for several months to years, it may lead to a gradual increase in muscle mass, so it is possible that you might notice you have a bit more visible muscle or “tone” after completing the program or later down the line.

However, the program is designed to emphasize strength over hypertrophy (a type of training for increasing muscle mass), so it’s unlikely that you would see a dramatic increase in muscle mass – particularly in just 12 weeks.

Beyond that, putting on an obvious amount of muscle takes a lot of effort and time. You also need to be eating enough calories / carbs / protein and have some other things in place to build significant muscle. Given that we start to lose muscle as we age, I’d say that any muscle that you can maintain or even gain is a positive thing for quality of life. 😉

I don’t care about technical stuff or how my body works. Do I HAVE to read the the e-book to follow this program?

Nope! The e-book is a completely separate entity from the Push It Strength Training Program.

If you love understanding how + why things work, the e-book is there for you to enjoy and learn from. However, if you just want to follow the strength training program, you’ll get great results. No heavy reading required 😉

ABOUT YOUR COACHES

Nikki Push Up HeadShot

Nikki Naab-Levy is a strength and nutrition coach with over a decade of experience helping women build strength, move beyond injury, and find peace with their bodies.

She holds B.S. in Exercise Science and B.S. Journalism from Ohio University. Her fitness wisdom has been featured in SELF magazine, Women's Health, and Girls Gone Strong.

When she’s not in the gym, you can find her watching reality TV, podcasting, and drinking all the coffee.

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Meg Push Up HeadShot (2)

Meghan Ramos, CPT/PTA is an advocate for strength, resilience, and healthy movement. She believes strength is for everyone, and can help every person tap into their inner superhero. 

As a licensed Physical Therapist Assistant, Meghan specializes in bridging the gap between skilled rehab, fitness, and daily life - with a special passion for pelvic floor health, pregnancy and postpartum, and folks navigating hypermobility. She loves working with anyone who’s intimidated by the gym, wants to get started but feels lost in the fitness world, or just needs some support to make a healthy habit stick for good.

When she’s not in the gym, you can find her hiking, seeking out delicious local foods, trying to keep her plants alive, and hanging out with her husband and their cat and dog. 

What others are saying:

There's a lot to love about PUSH IT - it meets you where you are with building challenge and continuous support, it's a resource that answers questions I've had when exercising on my own or in other programs for years, and it even has a good sense of humor.

But I think my favorite thing right now is that it's not asking for the kind of commitment so many others want, that it's not an all or nothing deal. I can use the equipment I have now to get started, and also work in the warm-ups and lessons learned to other exercise programs I love.

I already feel stronger, and I know that as I'm ready to do more this program will be there to challenge me, which is great motivation to keep going!"

Rachel Z.
PHD in Education & New Mom

Ready to get strong?

Sign up for PUSH IT REAL GOOD today!

$149*

*sales tax applicable for WA residents

Add to cart

Cart closes July 2, 2022 at 11:59 PST

Refund policy: This program has a 14 day no questions asked refund policy. If you purchase it and realize it is not right for you, please email hello@naablevy.com within 14 days of purchasing the program and I will be happy to give you a full refund.