Fitness Journal C3W9D3 (Pull-Up Pretensions)

Thoughts: Okay, so by now you all probably know that I can do push-ups. Lots and lots of them, in fact. Four years of military conditioning tends to do that to a gal with my type of build.

Push-ups are trifles. Forget push-ups.

I want to be able to do a pull-up.

Ever since I was a chubby 3rd grader I’ve been completely humiliated by the pull-up bar. I was never even able to hang with my chin above the stupid bar for more than a split second.

Along with the 16 minute 2-mile run, the pull-up has been my fitness goal nemesis. Short, muscular legs and a comparatively weak upper body do not make for a good distance runner OR a kickass pull-up princess.

So on top of my “get bigger arms” macro-goal for this challenge, I am going to set a “one good unassisted pull-up” micro-goal for March 1. I’ll be adding some extra pull-up specific exercises that, like my extra push-ups, are in addition to my Max-OT splits.

I figure if I can do just ONE pull-up while at my bulking weight of 134-136 lbs, I should be able to do a couple more once I cut down to maintenance weight at around 125 lbs. Running got easier when I became less tubby; pull-ups will hopefully do the same.

Nutrition (2000-2200 calorie maintenance/bulking menu)
1: 1 packet Nature’s Best PerfectRX chocolate shake (Coconut banana crunch bar)
2: 4 oz. grilled chicken breast, 3 c. raw spinach, 2 T. Just 2 Good Honey Dijon dressing, 3/4 c. baked sweet potato slices
3: Coconut banana crunch bar
4: Catered dinner at work: 4 oz. Mediterranean chicken breast, 1 c. assorted fruit, 2/3 c. mushroom penne pasta, 1/2 c. quiche (Counts as double portion)
5: 4 oz grilled chicken with low-carb BBQ sauce and 1/2 c. garlic herb couscous
6: Nutty vanilla pudding (eDiets EFL)

Multivitamin with iron
Calcium 500 + D
1 T. flax seed oil
1 t. GNC Creastack (5 g creatine, 2 g l-glutamine, and phosphates)

Calories eaten / deficit for yesterday = 2193 (target +433)
Water: 16 cups
Ratios: 43% carb / 40% protein / 17% fat

9:00 am Max-OT back/biceps and 100 push-ups at Gold’s
3:00 pm 1 mile walk (4 mph / 15 mins)
The Awful Truth:
1. I’m out of groceries. I am now limited to healthy foods I can make with oatmeal, protein powder, and canned tuna.
2. There’s a huge pile of dark and white laundry on my bed slowly acquiring permanent wrinkles as it cools.

Brownie Points:
1. Had a great workout this morning. I don’t think the blood donation yesterday is affecting me too much.
2. Didn’t re-open my vein by accident while lifting.

Short-term Goals: (Same as yesterday’s goals…)
1. Restock cottage cheese and fruit supply.
2. Fold laundry.
3. Make vet appointments for Slinky and Neville.

8 thoughts on “Fitness Journal C3W9D3 (Pull-Up Pretensions)

  1. oo! oo ! That’s one of my long term goals – to do one (or more!) unassisted pull-ups. I’ve been using the assisted pull-up machine for pyramid sets. I figure it as a back exercise, although its pretty compound. But I like that. I am no where near doing it unassisted, but I never try less than like 60lbs help because of the whole pyramid structure, I’m tuckered out by the time it gets to crunch time. What are you doing to train for this…. Do tell!!!
    I’ve been doing so much kung fu (4x week) I’m having trouble focusing in on it.
    go maggie!!

  2. Excellent goal – one of mine as well! I’ve made it to the 20# pin on the assisted pull up machine, haven’t even tried an unassisted in ages. In 2005 I’m also looking to squat my own body weight (15# away!) and bench my own body weight for 5 reps (about 30# away from that one). What are your other goals?

  3. That is one of my goals too! I tried some the other day, but my husband had to spot me, just a little he said! LOL! My senior year in highschool we had to do 1 and hold it for like 30 seconds. I was the only one in my class to be able to do it and I got the Presidential Academic Fitness Award! I also weighed 160lbs! ACK! LOL!

    ~Stacey 🙂

  4. Pull-ups must be on the list of goals for every woman who has already hit her fat loss goal, hah!

    Jojo–I was just going to start by adding in more assisted pull-ups for now. I haven’t been doing very many of them at all, and I have a feeling that as with push-ups, lots of practice might be the key.

    Amy–Besides the pull-up, I am shooting for a 15 minute 2 mile run by the end of the year (I’m a very slow runner–right now I’m still about 1:45 mins away from that goal), and a full split as a flexibility goal since my flexibility is truly sucky at this stage in my life.

    Stacey–Whoa! You could hang on for 30 seconds? I hate you. 😉

  5. You are doing so well Maggie and you are so strong wit your push-up, you will kill me. I do agree with you, pull-up are so important. Not always easy but I least my assisted weight is now lowering. Will be doing some alone, hopefully, soon.

    Keep on Rocking.

  6. Maggie, pullups are near and dear to my heart. Way back in Marine Corps bootcamp, the guys that could do less than 5 were taught these two things: Kip – it’s basically a momentum-assisted pull-up. You swing your legs back slightly and pop your legs and hips forward while pulling up. You may have seen this in the Army. ??? Over time it does help build up strength for traditional pullups.
    The second thing our DI’s showed them was to use an underhand grip. I’ve found that it engages more of the bicep as a assisting muscle during the movement.


  7. I can do a chin up, but not a pull up. I found that once I could do 10 reps assisted lifting 2/3 of my weight (pull-up), I could do a full chin up no problem.

  8. bisous, what’s the difference between a chin-up and a pull-up? I can never remember the difference, so I just call them all pull-ups. I thought I could do a pull-up, but it’s probably a chin-up I’m thinking of.

    Maggie, I’m sure it won’t take you long, with practice, to be able to do a pull-up.

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