A lot of my friends have been on the whole Cross Fit band wagon. While I liked the idea, I found a lot of the exercises difficult to do without a gym, weights, and some experience with these exercises. I stayed away from it for a long time though I occasionally went to the site to check out the workout of the day.
One day I discovered an exercise they called “Cindy”; complete as many rounds possible in 20 minutes
i) 5 pull-ups
ii) 10 push-ups
iii) 15 squats
It seemed like a simple workout without any complicated routines that I didn’t understand.
The only problem? I couldn’t do even 1 pull-up.
I decided that this was something I wanted to work on. It took me almost a month before I could do one un-assisted pull up.
For the first week, I used to jump up on the pull-up bar, and slowly come down, so I at-least did the second half of the pull-up. It wasn’t much, but it was better than nothing. I still couldn’t do a full pull-up (without jumping to build momentum, which didn’t really count).
The next week, I tried a different approach. I started doing assisted pull-ups with 6 or 7 plates. I used the assisted pull-ups to do my five reps and complete the Cindy workout. The pull-ups were still brutal, the squats a little easier. The push-ups, especially after the hundred push-ups challenge were the easiest part of the workout.
For almost an entire month, all I did every day was a one mile run and then Cindy. No other workout. Either the hundred push-up challenge, Cindy or running. After a few days, one plate came off, then another.
One month after I began, I was able to do 5 pull-up sets with just one plate. This is when I realized that I didn’t need the plate any more except as a mental crutch. The last plate came off.
Being able to do 5 quick unassisted pull-ups changed everything for me. I could be doing any other exercise, and for a quick break I would do 5 pull-ups and then get back to whatever I was doing. Soon I was doing 20-25 pull-ups every day in sets of 5. Today I can do 10 rounds of Cindy effortlessly.
Since I started this exercise, my upper body, arms and shoulder feel amazing. Include a run and squats, and I get a pretty good workout for all the large muscles in my body.
The visible results have got me a lot of positive comments and feedback from friends and family. Everyone notices that “I must work out” and “I look really lean and trim”.
The best thing about this workout is I need very little equipment, and it finishes so quickly it hardly feels like effort. No more 1 hour of cardio, no more heavy weights and complicated exercises.
And the results speak for themselves.
For people who would like to be able to do pull-ups at home, I’d recommend buying a good pull up bar like the Iron Gym Total Upper Body Workout Bar. It is very easy to assemble, attach and remove from a doorway. Having something like this at home means you can do a quick pull-up anytime you want instead of having to plan and schedule a workout at the gym.
PS: Now that I can do 5 pull-ups without any problem, my next goal is the twenty pull-ups challenge.
PPS: After the pull-up challenge, I integrated pushups, pull-ups and squats into my new daily workout