Let's have a philosophical discussion today about why we exercise.
There are lot's of "reasons" that you would give as to why we exercise. Some might say to "look better or feel better or live longer or have more energy or to perform better". There are lots of ways to look at the same thing.
We exercise for all of the reasons above.
This is true but I think it is more that that.
I think that we exercise not to be more than we should be or more than we are but to be WHAT we would be. We exercise to get closer to our potential.
You see, our bodies are amazing machines. We were designed by our creator to do so much more than we do. Our potential is so much higher than what most of us get to.
We don't exercise to be more than we are supposed to be. We exercise to get closer to our potential than we are now.
Maybe that is a paradigm shift for you. Maybe it is not.
This brings me to the topic of pull-ups.
I recently posted a video of me doing 45 unbroken pull-ups. The day before I had posted an embarrassing video of me and a NO REP clean. With all the, ahem, feedback I got from the bad form video I figured I'd redeem myself and post a video of me doing something more impressive then falling down.
I figured I was in the clear with that video.
Apparently my pull-up form was wrong. I love the Taylor Swift song with the line, "people throw rocks at things that shine."
I open myself up so I have to be a man and take it. It makes for good blog post idea.
You can watch the video yourself below.
When I look at an exercise like pull-ups I go back to the discussion from early. Why do we exercise? Why do we do it? We exercise to help us get closer to our potential.
If I were to only move my arms while doing a pull-up is that BETTER than the way that I do it? MAYBE I would focus on my biceps and my lats little more. But why? Is it a better exercise to do that? With a set of 45 pull-ups I am jacking my heart rate up, engaging my hips, using my core and stretching all my anterior and posterior muscles, tendons and ligaments.
It's funny because people that make fun of kipping pull-ups probably go to the gym and do the leg extension machine and crunches.
People have had this criticism of "kipping" pull-ups ever since CrossFit started teaching them as standard. Heck, maybe even before. It drives me crazy.
Here is what I think: straight arms to chin over the bar is a pull-up. Period. Why should we not use our body to do the work in the most efficient way possible?
I am 170 lbs. If I did 20 strict pull-ups then I lifted 3400 lbs over the bar. If I do 45 kipping pull-ups didn't I now lift 7650 lbs over the bar? Which one gets you a better workout? Which one makes your entire body stronger?
You could do the comparison with so many exercises. 10 leg extensions at 60 lbs equals 600 lbs moved by one muscle group. 10 thrusters at 95 lbs equals 950 lbs moved my MANY muscle groups.
The people that don't like kipping pull-ups are, in general, people that believe in the "body building" way of working out. In other words you target one muscle group at a time so it breaks down and then grows. I disagree with that mode of thinking. I believe that the body is meant to do many things and the rest and recovery may of my not be available in everyday normal life. We have to be prepared for anything!
I think strict pull-ups are a great exercise. I have nothing against them and they are a good way to help develop strength. But I like kipping pull-ups so much better because they make me more fit and do a better job at helping me to reach my potential.
So I guess to sum up my message today I will leave you with a simple though to ponder. At the end of your workout are you REALLY tired? Good. It was a success. Do it again tomorrow but try to get more tired.
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To your success,
Rick Copley | Your Best Fitness Coach | "Empowering YOU to be a champion"Your Best Fitness Coach Facebook Page |Instagram: @rickcopley
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