Aug 22 2012
Pull ups are hard. They can be a little intimidating. If you can’t do one, it’s embarrassing to just hang there and struggle. Flash back to pre-adolescent P.E. class. Class mates are snickering. You’re feeling inadequate. It is totally understandable this is not an experience you want to bring back up to the surface.
But here’s the real deal, if you can’t complete at least 10 pull ups in a row with perfect form, you’re missing out. The pull up is the best way to work the biggest muscle group in your upper body: the latissimus dorsi.
When your lats get stronger and more defined your waist looks smaller. Your posture improves. Your confidence sky rockets. Ladies, you get a bikini body. Men, you get that sexy v taper. You feel strong and powerful. You look athletic. You feel like a bad ass. You can give those junior high memories a swift kick to the curb and move on with your awesome life.
Today is day 20 of my 3 week program to hit your fitness goals. Today we’re going to push the fear aside and attack pull ups. I’m coaching you through 4 sets of 10 pull ups. Can’t do one yet? Don’t worry, I’m going to show you how to do assisted pull ups so you can get stronger.
Let’s do this.
xoxo ~ Cori
VIDEO: 3 Weeks to Awesome – Pull Up Workout
The coolest thing about this workout is how empowered you feel after you bust out a set of pull ups. I want you to take that same feeling of empowerment and apply it to your diet. During this 3 week program, in addition to the workouts, you also have a super power to develop each day. Today your super power is developing consistency and self discipline when it comes to your own nutrition.
I’m not just giving advice, I’m living it. I’m a mom. I have a day job totally unrelated to health and nutrition. I also have several clients. I have carpools and appointments and responsibilities. I make time to cook my own food. I make time for this blog. I have all of the same time challenges that you do. I have a history of being overweight. I like sugary and fatty foods. I have all the same cravings that you do.
Throughout this program, I’m giving you tips that make this lifestyle work for me, even with all of my other responsibilities. I’m giving you tips that I have seen work with my clients over the past 15 years. I am giving you tips that work for me. My hope is that you will find inspiration by seeing a real woman, real mom, and real working professional get this done.
If I can, you can too. Let’s do it together.
|Time: As long as it takes.|
|Workout Type: Rep challenge.|
|Workout Exercises: 4.|
Get your gear:
No gear needed.
Just your own body and a decision to get it done.
Buy the same nutrition products as me:
Get your protein here
Get your super greens here
Get your PB2 here
Get your egg whites here
Get your tea here
3 Weeks to Awesome – Pull Up Workout
If you can go through the full 40 pull ups without any assistance, try to repeat it. I did a few extra, but I also did quite a few with assistance instead of without. It’s important to check your ego before you start pulling. As soon as you feel your form faltering even just a little, switch to assisted and perfect your form once again.
For all 4 sets, here’s your form: You will hang from a pullup bar using an overhand or hammer grip, your arms completely straight. Cross your feet behind you or below you. Without moving your lower body, pull yourself as high as you can. Your chin should rise above the bar. Pause momentarily, then lower your body until your arms are straight and repeat.
We will be switching up a few little variances with each set. You can check out the differences below.
Remember to focus on your form. Raise your chest to the bar, don’t allow your back to round. Keep your core tight. Try not to kip. Try not to allow your hips to flex or your knees to come up and forward. It’s more important to do the exercise correctly than to power through with faltered form. Visualize each muscle that your’e trying to squeeze. See it getting stronger in your mind’s eye.
It’s always smart to start upper body workouts with a rotator cuff warm up. Use a water bottle or light weight.
Wide Grip Pull Ups:
Arms wider than shoulder width. Overhand grip. Apply the same form tips from above for each variation of pull ups.
Hammer Grip Pull Ups:
Arms shoulder width. This would be a standard grip, but instead of overhand you grip the bar as I do in the video. Palm facing each other. This is called a hammer grip.
Inside Grip Pull Ups:
Arms closer than shoulder width. Overhand grip. Don’t use an underhand grip, that makes the exercise into a chin up and makes it a little easier. I want you to work. Do it overhand. If you struggle, use assistance just like I do in the video.
Side to Side Pull Ups:
Overhand grip or hammer grip. Use a standard width or you can even go slightly wider than your pullup grip. Pull yourself up and toward one of your hands. Try not to twist. Pull up and to the side only. Lower and repeat to the other side. Each lift is one repetition.
Post your scores! Let me know how many you got through with assistance and without! Let me know how long it took you! Keep track of your workouts so you know when you’re making progress! I want to know how you did.
No matter how hard you workout, it is the super powers that will ultimately get you to your goal. You can find the super powers I want you to focus on at the end of each workout in the 3 week program.
Invoke Your Super Power: Self Control and Being Consistent
This whole week we have focused on nutrition. I have probably overloaded you with information on fats, carbs and protein. I have given you a glimpse into my own personal diet. I have given you my own personal grocery list.
I have armed you with the information you need to start making changes, but the true super power is to be consistent. The true power lies within your own self control.
I have given you the education. I have given you the tools. I have showed you how. Self control, self discipline and consistency are what you need to bring to the table for your own success.
I’m not saying you need to be strict with yourself 24-7. You know that from reading my other posts about nutrition. I’m saying the opposite of that. You need to know what works for you. You need to stick with it.
You need to plan to have a rejuvenation meal once a week or once a month depending on your progress and your goal, but the rest of the time you need to have a goal, a plan and stick with it.
Be deliberate. Be strong. Be powerful. You can do this.
I like to post something about cardio and nutrition at the end of every post because it is important.
Cardio and nutrition are going to be two of the most important parts of achieving your results, no matter what what your goal is. You can not work off your nutritional decisions with exercise. What? You can’t eat a donut, then just do 2 hours of cardio and *poof* it will be like it never happened? That’s what I’m saying. Come on. No. You can’t.
Your body doesn’t work like a simple addition or subtraction problem. It is not calories in vs. calories out. What you eat has a chemical effect on your body. Even if you do cardio to ‘burn it off’ the chemical effect is still present. Different sugars have an affect. Different proteins have an effect. Different fats have an effect. When you take a vitamin, you understand that it has an effect in your body that cardio will not ‘work off,’ right? Food works the same way. Different foods have positive and negative chemical effects within our body. You can’t just work them off.
You have to unlock and unleash the body fat by working with your body in every aspect. Your body works in harmony like a symphony. When one instrument is off, the entire song doesn’t sound right. A good steady drumbeat can’t make up for a guitar that’s out of tune. 2 hours of cardio cannot make up for a donut. Or pizza. Or macaroni and cheese. Or wine and a baguette. Got it?
I do a minimum of 45 minutes of stairs with intervals as cardio each and every day. When I’m trying to lose fat I usually do two separate 45 minute cardio sessions a day. Even while I have been recuperating from the car crash, I have still been able to do at least one session of my daily cardio. I love my cardio and I like to stay conditioned. I personally prefer to do a little more cardio than the average figure competitor, then also eat a little more. It takes more time and effort, but I feel the pay off is well worth it. The pay off is that I feel awesome. I feel energized by cardio. I love it.
Post Workout Nutrition
When I was trying to gain muscle I finished every workout with a protein shake, animal protein, and some complex and simple carbs. These are healthy choices for gaining or for performance. These are not the right choices for me for trying to lose fat, define and sculpt muscle. Trying to define and sculpt muscle is different from gaining muscle. This means I need to eat something different.
When I am trying to lose fat and sculpt muscle, I am much more strict with my diet. Only true food sources. No protein powder.
I finish up every workout with lean protein from true food sources (a little red meat, white chicken, white fish and egg whites are best) and some dark green veggies or Super Greens mixed with water only. Again, no protein powder. If you are a vegetarian you would most likely need to supplement with protein powder. If you are not, let me say again that true food sources work best for losing body fat.
Even when I am trying to lose fat, I still FEED my body.
Want more information about nutrition? Check out BPM.tv Nutrition 101.
You can also look at my current personal fat loss diet in order to get ideas on how to develop your own nutrition plan.
You can click on the image above to link to my fat loss diet to get details about what works for me, but here is the basic breakdown.
This is my meal plan while I am trying to lose fat and define muscle. My carbohydrates come from complex sources only and are kept to about 100 grams per day.
My sugar is kept at about 18 grams per day. That’s it. That is less than what is in one banana. That means fruit is not in my fat loss nutrition plan. My sugars come from minimal amounts that naturally occur in veggies and in the complex carbs I eat each day. No matter what your goal, I highly recommend you watch your sugar intake, even ‘healthy’ sugar like fruit, and moderate it to a minimum based on your own personal goals.
My protein is kept at about 250 grams per day and comes from high quality, organic, free range (or wild) lean animal sources. My fats are kept at about 40 grams per day and come from my protein and complex carbohydrate choices (not additional plant sources like olive oil, coconut, nuts, or avocado).
That equals about 1800 calories per day. I don’t drop it much lower than that.
I eat natural, organic, whole foods that I cook myself, or if possible I eat them raw. I drink 1 to 2 gallons of water and a couple cups of either coffee or tea. There is no mysterious, magical diet. If you want to lose bodyfat you need to eat a fair amount of lean protein and A LOT of green veggies at every meal. Period.
Did you like this post? Tell me in the comments!
Please share your thoughts and questions in the comments. Don’t be shy! Your comments may help to inspire another. Your questions may help someone else who has the exact same question, but is too shy to ask. I love hearing from you!
Try to come up with a way to make the exercises even more challenging! Try to have better form than me! Let’s inspire each other.