Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The Oh So Elusive Pull-Up.....

O.K., so for months now, I have been trying to master the art of unassisted pull ups. Yet, try as I might I can't seem to do one! For the longest time, I've been doing machine assisted pull ups with about 60 lbs of assistance (which means I am pulling up about 75lbs on my own). Every now and then I would try them unassisted but was unable to do so.

More recently, I've been noticing that my arms are building up nicely so I thought, "Pull ups? Yeah, I should be able to do a couple by now", but noooooooo, nope, nil. There I hung in the middle of the air for several seconds with my arms as straight as ever and my chin no closer to the bar than when I started. So down on the floor I hopped with a quick look around to make sure not *too* many people had witnessed my silliness. Not that anyone else should care or judge, but I guess it hurt my pride a little! I decided to try again with 50lbs instead of the usual 60 and I was pleasantly surprised that I could do 2 sets of 12 reps and relieved that there was proof that indeed I am getting at least a bit stronger!

I don't know if it's just a mental block that keeps me from being able to do unassisted pull ups or if I truly just need to keep building strength. Hell, it's probably a bit of both! Either way, one of these days I'm gonna do it and boy will that be fun to post about!

C ya!


At 5:23 PM, Blogger Teresa Miranda said...

Oh girl I feel ya!!!! I am the same way! I can't do 1 unassisted. Not a one! ALl through school growing up in the Physical Assessment tests I would excel even break records in all of the other area. When it came to the freakin pull up well big fat 0. I can see me when I am 90 still trying to do just one come on just give me one LOL! I so feel ya! LOL. Keep trying you can do it I believe it. How about the Teresa & Julie pull up challenge LOL.


At 5:32 PM, Blogger Julie said...

I'm all for it! Maybe I just need a little friendly competition to get my ass in gear! :)

And oh how I remember those Physical Assessment tests! I remember being down on the floor getting ready to do the Shuttle Run with my heart pounding because I wanted to win so bad!

Thanks for the encouragement. We WILL prevail!


At 6:00 AM, Blogger Brit-Man said...

Julie, you can get there. I am fortunate, that I weigh about as much as I did when I started. I used to look a bit loose round the muscles that's all, still slim, but now I'm tighter, and gained strength, so I managed to get the strength to pull the same weight.

If you're doing what I think you're doing, where you try to pull yourself up until the bar goes behind the neck, (working Back and Biceps), then the difference comes when you try to use a wide grip as opposed to a closer grip.

The closer chin-up style arm placement, makes them harder.

I maxed out on those once at about 12-13 reps. Though I don't train Back and Bi's together, so I don't do them much at all.

If you are trying to do Chin-ups, where the Chin goes above the bar, then you can change the way you do those depending on whether you use a Supinated grip, (Hand Palms pointing towards your face), or a Pronated grip, Hand Palms facing away.

Which ever one you do, try doing them the other way, and see how you get on. As the type of grip used, changes some of the muscles used, during the movement.

You cna practice the two movements just sitting in a chair at work or at home, to feel how they differ.

It's possible your choice of grip, might be utilising muscles you've been working earlier in your schedule, thus they are tired, and unable to help you chin-up properly.

Just a thought.

Keep trying hard, and feel proud of your strength gains. You are doing so, so well Julie.



At 6:26 AM, Blogger Brandi said...

Congrats to you for working on those pull ups, Julie! I can't do one either, and unfortunately I haven't even attempted one in I don't know how long! haha. Keep up the good work!!


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