to do pull-ups, you must do pull-ups.

26 Jan

My husband and I did a WOD today that I will forever deem the “forearm thrasher,” that is if I have the courage to incorporate it in our programming again!  It was one of those unexpectedly hard ones that at first glance you say “that shouldn’t be too bad” and then halfway through you wonder how you could  have ever thought that. A long, slow, and nagging hurt.

20min AMRAP

9 pull-ups
12 push press (95/65)
75m farmers walk (1.5 pood/1 pood each hand)

The first pull-ups went off without a hitch but after the first farmers walk I wondered how I’d grip the bar for the rest of the 18 minutes. My kipping pull-ups need work and spending more time gripping the bar than I had to today was not an option. I ended up doing an interesting combo of muscling through dead hang pull-ups and stringing 2-3 kipping pull-ups in between to get it done. After it was all over my forearms felt as if they going to burst through my skin.

I was humbled by the pull-up bar today but quickly reminded by my dear husband of a vital piece of information that I was forgetting: 18 months ago I could not do one single solitary pull-up. You see, me and the pull-up have quite the relationship, which is why I now practice them any chance I get. I couldn’t finish my application to the Air Force Academy because I couldn’t do the 1 pull-up required for the physical. I spent years doing lat pull downs and every other isolation exercise doomed to get you nowhere fast, always telling myself I couldn’t do pull-ups because “my shoulder feels like it’s going to dislocate.”  I went through 2 cycles of P90X doing chair assisted pull-ups. Do you think I could do 1 single pull-up on  my own after it was all done? Not even close.

That brings me to present day and 18 glorious months of  Primal Blueprint fitness and CrossFit that finally lead me to the pull-up. I went from the purple band to the red band, to un-assisted, plateaued at 5 dead-hang pull-ups for a while, incorporated the Armstrong Pull-Up Program and made another huge leap. Now it seems I can’t pass any type of bar without a quick practice set. Pull-ups will forever have a special place in my heart and I will forever strive for more. That being said…let go of fear, let go of excuses, most importantly let go of lat pull downs at the gym, and start your pull-up adventure today!

My best,

5 Responses to “to do pull-ups, you must do pull-ups.”

  1. Suzanne January 26, 2012 at 8:15 pm #

    Thank you for sharing your pull-up story. I have made that a goal of mine:):)


  2. the PRIME pursuit January 27, 2012 at 9:43 am #

    Glad you liked it, Suzanne! You started your pull-up adventure today by pushing yourself to use the band and it was awesome…way to go!


  3. forever wild parenting July 20, 2014 at 3:04 am #

    Aw, this was an exceptionally good post. Spending some time and
    actual effort to make a top notch article… but what can I say…
    I hesitate a lot and never seem to get nearly anything done.



  1. Don’t let being “broken” break you « the PRIME pursuit - April 26, 2012

    […] I’ve said before, I have a very love/hate relationship with pull-ups, but little did I know they would do me in one day! I broke my foot. […]


  2. So You Haven’t Worked out in a Year. | the PRIME pursuit - February 25, 2018

    […] a row right now?  I bet you can do 4 sets of three.  Knock those 12 out, and go again tomorrow.  If you want to do pull-ups, you gotta do pull-ups.  […]


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