Bodybuilder and fitness YouTuber Will Tennyson regularly recreates the diet plans, workout routines and daily schedules of famously fit celebrities and athletes, from actor Mark Wahlberg to Navy SEAL David Goggins. In his most recent video, Tennyson spends a day living like Andre Rush, the former White House chef and Army Sergeant who is known for his bulging, 24-inch arms, which he maintains by doing 2,222 pushups every single day, and eating between 6,000 and 10,000 calories.
Oh, and he does all that on just three hours of sleep. “I do not know how this man functions,” says Tennyson.
The challenge begins with a 3 a.m. wake-up and meditation. Then Rush would usually crank out his 2,222 pushup reps, which he performs as a way of both commemorating and raising awareness for the on-average 22 military personnel who commit suicide every day.
“He would do all these in 75 minutes,” says Tennyson. “I know for a fact I cannot do all these in 75 minutes, so I’m going to give myself the entire day.” He breaks the reps down into chunks, in an attempt to pace himself and make the target less daunting and more achievable. He manages to complete just over half of his reps by 4:30 a.m., performing 75 minute-long sets of 15, totaling 1,125.
For the diet portion of the challenge, Will sticks to a macro breakdown of 1,200 grams of protein, 400 grams of carbs, and 177 grams of fat, consumed via four huge meals throughout the day. Breakfast consists of an enormous, 1,000-gram egg white omelet with coffee and a 1,600-calorie protein shake. “This is actually the most calories of the day in one sitting,” says Tennyson, before forcing it all down.
The second meal is 17 and a half ounces of seared chicken breast, and a yogurt berry bowl made with extra cottage cheese, protein powder, and a chopped-up protein bar—or as Tennyson puts it, anabolic cement. “This one’s a little bit more intimidating than the last one,” he says. “I don’t think I’m going to be able to eat for a very long time.”
Then it’s time to take on Rush’s arm day workout, which includes seated dumbbell curls, rope curls, barbell curls, incline curls, and hammer curls. “I already feel like I’m going to throw up,” he says. “I’m very tired, and I think the fact I’ve eaten a lot of protein, which is hard to break down in the body, is making me even more tired right now.” In order to keep going towards his daily pushup total, Tennyson superset each exercise with an additional 25 pushup reps during the training session.
The third meal of the day comprises 10 ounces of shrimp with chickpea pasta, and a burrito bowl. Then, not long after, it’s time for the fourth and final meal: an entire rotisserie chicken, a load more egg whites, and another huge protein shake. After that, Tennyson churns out his final chunk of pushups, reaching 2,222 reps at 7:31 p.m.
Recapping his experience, Tennyson believes there is a “point of diminishing returns” in performing literally thousands of pushup reps every day, although he acknowledges that Rush does it for reasons that are important to him outside of building muscle. “The three hours of sleep was the hardest part of the day,” he adds. “It definitely affected my mood, my ability to think and actually do any sort of work and be productive, and especially when I worked out, I had no motivation.”
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