One Sneaky Trick To Do More Push-Ups and Pull-ups

In yesterdays challenge blog post I did a pushup and pull up challenge and I kinda surprised myself with the results.

Being totally honest, I did get some shit from my Facebook friends in regards to my pull-up form and I do agree with them to a point; I should have went full on pull up with a wider grip.

AND after a twitter conversation with my homie @cliftonharski we both decided to test ourselves on a week by week basis in the pushup and pull-up challenge WITH proper form of course.

Doing this will not interfere with my current fat loss program and there could be a chance it increases my “Hawtness” factor aka. Heat Score from a 7.9 to a full on 8 🙂

At the very least, I’ll be pretty proud of myself by being able to do both of these primal exercises in an easier fashion, especially the pull-up.  That exercise has been the bane of my existence since I started training.

My goals for the challenge are 25 wide grip pull-ups with proper form and 60 pushups in about 4 weeks.

Today, I’m going to give you one quick (yet sneaky) trick I’m going to use to increase your reps for both exercises.  But before let’s show you how to do them proper:

How To Do The Pull-Up Properly

Exercise Descriptions Courtesy of

Start each rep from a dead hang with straight elbows. Clear the bar with your chin on every rep.

  • Squeeze The Bar. And put the bar close to your fingers, not in the palm of your hand.
  • Breathe at The Bottom. It’s easier to breathe at the bottom. Take a big breath before pulling yourself up.
  • Chest Up. Don’t let your shoulders go forward: it’s unhealthy for your shoulders. Lead with your chest up & keep your shoulders back.
  • Look Up. Never look down during Pull-ups & Chin-ups. Look at the bar. 
  • Elbows to The Floor. Drive with your elbows to the floor. This involves your stronger back muscles more.
  • Bend Your Legs. And cross your feet. Squeeze your glutes on the way up.
  • Brace you core.  Pretend as if you were to get punched in the stomach and brace your core when pulling up and coming down.  Too much swinging really defeats the purpose of this exercise and your abs will keep you in place.

How To Do The Push-Up Properly

Push-up Technique. Assume the Push-up starting position with your elbows locked. Lower yourself by bending your elbows until your chest almost touches the floor. Come back up by pushing through the floor.

  • Hand Position. Don’t take your hands out to wide. Put your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width. Hands turned out 45°.
  • Tuck Your Elbows. Easier on your shoulders. Keep your elbows at a 45° angle to your body during Push-ups.
  • Brace your core. Straight line from shoulders to ankles. Push your abs out as if someone was going to punch you in the stomach.
  • Squeeze Your Glutes. Push your abs out while squeezing your glutes hard. Both will avoid any hyper-extension of your lower back.
  • Tuck Your Chin. Lead with your chest, not with your head. Your neck must stay inline with the rest of your spine. Don’t look forward.

Now Here’s One SNEAKY Trick To Get Better At Both of Them:

The PYRAMID Program

No…not THAT type of pyramid.

The Pyramid program is a no rest (rest while doing other exercises) workout complete with a warmup, max out, and a cool down all rolled into one workout.  It is a great foundation builder to increase muscular endurance and stamina. 

I recommend this workout once a week as long as it doesn’t interfere with your current workout program.

You start at the bottom with 1 pull-up and two pushups.  Every time you start a new set you’ll go up in reps.  So the next step will be 2 pull-ups and 4 pushups.  Set up the pyramid to go up to a certain max number example:  10 pull-ups and 20 pushups.  

NOTE: You can choose the MAX numbers based on your current fitness level.

Your goal is to climb the pyramid all the way up, and then all the way back down

You start at the bottom of the pyramid, at number one. For each set, you times that set number by 1 and that tells you how many pullups to do then multiply it by 2 to get your pushups.  Keep on progressing until you get to the top of the pyramid.

Now you start working your way back down the pyramid. So the next set you’ll do 18 pushups and 9 pull-ups.  Keep going until you worked all the way back down to one.  If you can’t finish out a set then just rest two second but get those reps DONE.

Here is a summary of a sample pyramid:

Go UP the pyramid:

Set 1- 1 pull-ups/2 pushups/
Set 2- 2 pull-ups/4 pushups/
Set 3 – 3 pull-ups/6 pushups/
Set 4 – 4 pull-ups/8 pushups
Set 5 – 5 pullups/10 pushups (You should be warmed up at this point)
Set 6 – 6 pull-ups/12 pushups
Set 7 – 7 pul-ups/14 pushups
Set 8 – 8 pull-ups/16 pushups
Set 9 – 9 pul-lups/18 pushups
Set 10 – 10 pull-ups/20 pushups 

Then Go DOWN the pyramid and you’ll be done.

This is one (albeit brutal) way to get better at pushups and pull-ups.  Do this once a week to get your numbers up.

And REMEMBER: Test yourself weekly to see how many pull-up and pushups you can do at one time.  If you don’t measure it you won’t improve it.

Next week I’ll be coming out with a video and a little blog post on one of my most favourite things on the planet:  CHEAT DAYZZZZ and how I’m strategically using them to prep for my upcoming photo shoot.  You are gonna wanna watch this one as I eat the MOST EPIC of EPIC CHEAT MEALZ…did I mention it would be EPICCCCCCC.

That’s next week 🙂

IF you “LIKED” this blog post be sure to press those Twitter, Facebook and Pintrest buttons below to share with your ninja’s.  Thanks homie.  Peace!

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