Successful Suffering

After all my worry last night, I ended up very happy with myself after today’s Suffer on Saturday workout. I spoke to Erika, one of many nice people at the gym, before the thing started and asked her how she does pull-ups when she gets tired. She showed me a lower bar that she uses. She can keep her feet on the ground and jump, then pull, into each pull-up. I was so glad I asked her, because this turned out to be a much better way (for me) to assist the pull-ups than the rubberband. After the whole thing was over and I recovered for a while, I tried and succeeded in doing some full kipping pull-ups, getting my chin well above the bar.
The workout was:
400-meter sprint
50 air squats (using a medicine ball underneath to gauge depth)
400-meter sprint
50 push-ups
400-meter “sprint” (by now it was more a jog)
50 sit-ups (I hooked my feet under some dumbbells)
400-meter “sprint”
25 pull-ups
My time was 19:20. I had hoped to be under 20 minutes but wasn’t sure that would happen because of my slow runs and my many broken sets of push-ups and pull-ups. If I hadn’t done jumping pull-ups, my time would have been much slower.
Before we left, we did lots of extra stuff. It’s so much fun to be there and goof off, trying out new drills without having them be an obligatory part of a workout. Assistant coach Michael showed me and Nancy and Erika some drills we can use to work up to the muscle-up. I should write those down soon. They involved bringing a pair of rings down low enough to practice ring dips going for full depth, then lowering them even more and using them for really deep push-ups. Hard!
After we spent a bunch of time on that, Erika and I both did muscle-ups in the harness. It provides so much assistance that it doesn’t count as really doing a muscle-up, but at least you can practice the techniques of the false grip, the ring pull-up, the transition from the pull-up to the dip, the final push to vertical, keeping the rings right against the body, and the controlled descent. Lots of fun and really hard! Even with the harness. The first one I did, I hollered “Hey Tom!” because I was so excited about doing it and wanted to make sure he saw me. I also whispered to Nancy, “Take my picture!” Silly.
When we got home, I did some yard work. I was surprised I had energy for that, but it was a beautiful day with a few sun breaks and I was happy to be outside.
I’m hoping Tom will blog his Suffer on Saturday too. Hey Tom!

2 thoughts on “Successful Suffering”

  1. First off, you will probably be sick of me saying, “wow!” But that’s just intense.
    Second, so, do you do fifty pushups at a shot, or just as many as you can, then add the rest as you can get them? If you do the latter, I could follow along. I’ve been feeling a little blown away, but if I can “fake” it a bit to get up to strength, that makes sense to me. Does that fit with the philosophy at all?

  2. We’re supposed to do push-ups in good form, with a flat and rigid body. It is fine to break up the set. I start with 10 at a time down to 2 at a time by the time I’m done. Rests are brief. The idea is not to go on to a different exercise though, for whatever reason.

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