|Preparing Americans to Serve in the Military, Special Ops, Law Enforcement, & Fire Fighting
Stop Doing Pushups and Pullups EVERYDAY!
This one drives me crazy. Far too often I see this comment followed by the question - "why aren't I getting stronger in my PT?" This question is about adding PT everyday into a workout program for hundreds of repetitions each day!
have been doing 500 pushups and situps along with 100+ pullups everyday for the
past few months. I saw some great increases but now my increases have
stopped and starting to turn into decreases on some days I test. What is
going on? I thought it was OK to do calisthenics everyday?"
2nd Upper body Workout of the week: (Wed) - Pyramid Workout. This workout has a warmup, max out (1 set), and a cool down built in and works really well of building and maintaining a foundation of PT fitness for testing or training purposes.
3rd Upper body Workout of the week: (Saturday) - Notice the two day recovery for this ONCE a week max failure set workout. Here is a tough workout that will help those stuck at 15+ pullups / 80+ pushups get into the 20+ / 100+ range in a two minute time period for PST, PAST, PFT purposes. Do a set number like 100 pullups, 200, pushups, 300 situps in a max rep set round robin circuit. Your goal is to get the 100,200.300 in as few sets as possible resting 1 min after each max rep set of pullups, pushups, situps (2 min max time on each). Your goal is to also fail at each set or make the time limit of 2 minutes.
So for more information about the three heavy weights of calisthenics (Pullups, Pushups, Dips) check out why it is important to learn about recovery as these exercises do work you harder than you think:
Pullups will work the grip, back, biceps just as pulldowns, bent over rows, and bicep curls will. Pullups are equivalent to nearly 100% of your body weight on your back / bicep muscles and all of your bodyweight on your grip muscles.
Dips are the same tough heavy weight exercise as pullups but focus the muscle groups of the chest, shoulders, and triceps at nearly 100% of your bodyweight. This is very similar to doing bodyweight bench press or even military press as far as muscle stresses. These exercises are considered the heavy lifting exercises of the calisthenics and require rest for recovery.
Pushups will actually only put about 40-50% of your body weight on your chest, shoulders, and triceps so it is less of a heavy weight exercise equivalent. BUT, it still requires the same amount of rest as you would need during a weight lifting day of bench press, military press, and other pushing exercises.
Hope this helps you create better workouts that will allow you to recover. Because if you do not recover from your workouts you will not grow or get stronger.
NOTE: There is ONE way I do teach daily pullups and pushups in my Pullup - Push Program and my Pushup-Push Program. But here is the difference - these programs only last 10 days of daily pushups or pullups. Then you rest three days and you test on day 14. Your maxes usually increase by 50-100% depending on what you started with on day 1. I only recommend these two programs 1-2 times a year as people who have tried it back to back to back were disappointed with results of anytime longer than 10 days.
Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL and fitness author certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. If you are interested in starting a workout program to create a healthy lifestyle - check out the StewSmith.com Fitness eBook store and the Stew Smith article archive at StewSmith.com. To contact Stew with your comments and questions, e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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