x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Australian mother ‘exhilarated and relieved’ after setting world record for knuckle push-ups

'I feel like I have been hit by 19 cranes. My husband had to help me get dressed,' says the 34-year-old mother after breaking the Guinness World Record at Al Wahda Mall in Abu Dhabi by doing 9,241 knuckle push-ups.

Eva Clarke waves to supporters during her gruelling world record attempt for knuckle push-ups held at Abu Dhabi's Al Wahda Mall over the weekend. Mona Al Marzooqi/ The National
Eva Clarke waves to supporters during her gruelling world record attempt for knuckle push-ups held at Abu Dhabi's Al Wahda Mall over the weekend. Mona Al Marzooqi/ The National

ABU DHABI // After twenty-four hours of running, walking, cycling and doing pushups, Eva Clarke broke two world records for most knuckle pushups.

In her first hour, the Australian broke her first record of most knuckle pushups in an hour by completing 1206 pushups. The previous record was 300.

At 1:10pm on Saturday she broke her second record of most knuckle pushups in 24 hours by doing 9,241 pushups. The previous record was 7,000.

“I felt exhilarated, relieved that it was over and excited about the money we raised,” Ms Clarke said. “I was overwhelmed with the community support and I had so many people to thank.”

The event started at 1:10 pm on Friday at Al Wahda Mall, and finished 24 hours later.

In preparation, Ms Clarke ate carbohydrates, protein and fresh fruit and vegetables the day before the challenge. She also prepared by averaging 4,800 pushups per day.

During the day, after reaching about 3,000 pushups, Ms Clarke said she couldn’t feel her elbows.

“I had to go hard and I strained my joints, and I had to continue maintaining good form,” she said.

“My knuckles were OK, my shoulder fine, but I had really sore elbows.

She said her “body would freeze” and she had to keep moving.

“I kept stretching, getting massaged, and I couldn’t stop moving. I couldn’t do pushups but I had to do something physical,” she said.

She took many breaks, especially towards the end, to eat, drink and get massaged.

After the event, Ms Clarke had cake and pizza and went to bed at 5pm.

“I feel like I have been hit by 19 cranes. My husband had to help me get dressed,” she said.

Ms Clarke, who is also a fitness trainer, said she will be back to training at the end of this week. Her feat was to raise awareness for the Maria Cristina Foundation, a local charity that provides education relief and funds for children in the Dhaka province in Bangladesh.

“It is worth it because my pain will go away in a week, but the children’s lives will be changed for a lifetime,” she said.

“Twenty-four hours worth of dedication and commitment, we change people’s lives.”

About US$17,000 (Dh62,434) was raised for the foundation.

Ms Clarke thanked her supporters shortly after reaching her goal.

She wrote on Facebook: “I want to mention that everyone who somehow took part or came and watched the event, donated, sent me messages or worked by my side with pushups and other extreme activities/exercises. You ALL truly pushed me to the finish line. Your words, actions, thoughts, comments and prayers got me there – 24 hours later. I am truly blessed to have you all in my life.”

aalkhoori@thenational.ae