January is historically a time when people focus on goal setting. Although I have rebelled against this annual ritual by starting my personal goals mid-December; I do realize that the holidays are a huge obstacle for many who want to improve their fitness level. Instead of giving advise to people who need to start working out, I want to focus on those who have been working out. Goals are important for everyone, even exercisers who show up regularly at the gym.
Whatever you have been doing for your workout routine, add some new goals and methods of training. If you are a runner, add strength training. If yoga has kept you centered for years, add boxing classes. If you are a cross-fitter, add a muay thai workout to your regiment. If have been doing body sculpting classes, treat yourself to a personal trainer. All of these new workout experiences will help keep you excited about fitness and even assist with mitigating overuse injuries from your routine workout.
2018 Best Fitness Goal –Pull-Ups & Chin-Ups
Regardless of which form of fitness you use, add pull-ups / chin-ups to your 2018 goals. I have been told my members of my gym that chin-up and pull-ups intimidating and too hard. I often hear that ‘only guys and skinny people do them.’ I assure you this is not true. Everyone can train to be able to do a pull-up. Like push-ups, pull-ups are one of the best exercises for total body strength. There are many beginner exercises that will help you ultimately achieve a full pull-up/chin-up.
So do not be afraid of a long road to success, only be afraid of a shortage ambition (Chinese proverb). Pull-ups exhibit your relative body weight strength. You can expect that in the process of training for pull-ups and chin-ups, you will also enhance your core strength and overall muscular definition.
Pull-ups and chin-ups are compound exercises; they involve both small and large muscle groups. If you turn your hands away from you, it is referred to as a pull-up. If you turn your hands towards you, it is called a chin up. In the process of training for this goal you can expect to improve:
- Functional strength
- Core strength
- Enhance your posture
- Achieve more upper body/shoulder definition
- Build confidence
If you do not know where to start, check out this video. It is ideal for beginners and can serve as a warm up for individuals who can do pull-ups. This video gives you a progression. Make sure you properly warm up the back and shoulders before attempting pull-ups. Follow the training program in the video led by Brennan Cox, The Director the Chicago Parisi Speed & Sports Performance School , the workout routine is listed below. This program is an excellent substitute for ‘back day.’
Back Day / Building Towards Pull-ups and Chin-ups
Exercise 1 : TRX Row – 4 sets of 6-12 reps
Exercise 2: Cable Back Fly – 4 sets of 6-12 reps
Exercise 3: Med-ball Plank Walk Over – 4 sets of 6 -12 reps per side
Exercise 4: Scapular Pull (Shoulder Blade Articulation) – 4 sets of 4 to 12 reps
Exercise 5 : Pull/Chin-Up Over Bar, Eccentric Release or Negatives 4 sets of 4 to 12 reps