Are pull-ups required?

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Dear Reader,

Well, I addressed this a bit in a Facebook post yesterday, and those of you that have “liked” the Facebook group  know this, and today, as promised, I’ll expound on this a bit in this post.

First off, our Facebook page is right HERE: –  I’d still recommend signing up for the daily blog posts on the website itself as that means you’ll get these blog posts directly in your Inbox, however, Facebook pages can  be a useful ways to stay abreast of what is going on as well.

To each  his own – and that brings me to the pull-ups question.

I often get questions from people asking me how to improve their pull-ups, and the first thing I ask them is – well – how many pushups can you do?

At this point I usually either get one of two answers (both well intentioned, of course, but way, way, off the mark in terms of what you should be doing) –

Pushups? Pah! Those are easy! Why would I want to be wasting my time with them?

Or … (and this is equally common) – I need real strength! And pushups don’t give me any real strength! It’s easy to do pushups. I want to know how to do pull-ups!

Well, first off, these people are WRONG. Pushups, done correctly are anything but “easy” – and this holds true even for someone like me who does pushups and squats as the mainstay and pretty much the only exercises in my routine that I really, really (along with bridging) focus upon.

And while I’ve done plenty of other things in the past, including getting to the point of doing 100 PLUS pull-ups a day (and therefore putting out an UPDATED course on it) – NOTHING, I repeat, NOTHING, has worked quite a well for me as the pushups I teach you in 0 Excuses Fitness (in terms of building brute OVERALL upper body strength).

And amazingly enough – all of this without doing what folks consider to be (and what is) another super strength builder – that being the handstand pushup which I do detail briefly in 0 Excuses Fitness, but even THAT is NOT required!

No – pushups – DONE CORRECTLY – are all you need!

Let me emphasize this again – DONE CORRECTLY!

When most people think of pushups they usually think of the military style pushups, and quickly bang out a few sloppy sets and claim its easy.

The REVERSE is true if anything. And that word holds significance, as pushups done in reverse, are, quite literally, as the book says one of the BEST DARN exercises you can do for yourself – and when you get to the point of doing 100 plus of them in a SINGLE workout – in different styles – you’ll see what I mean.

What do boxers and wrestlers do as the mainstay of their upper body work?


The U.S. Marines and Navy seals do emphasize pull-ups – but again – what exercise do THEY do as their mainstay?

PUSHUPS, PUSHUPS, and MORE PUSHUPS! And even my buddy – an U.S. Marine with over 20 years of ACTIVE duty was floored by some of the exercises I showed him one night while chatting with him at a local restaurant – THAT’s how well these exercises work!

What does all this translate into for the average Joe? Well, to put it simply – pushups are what you need to be doing – with the RIGHT BREATHING – and with PROPER technique.

And of course if you’re one of those that can’t pump out a single rep of some of the pushup styles I mention – not to worry.  Grit, determination – and BLOODY MINDED CUSSEDNESS will get you there – along with the 0 EXCUSES mentality!

Now, none of this means pull-ups are not a good goal to aim for. Quite the contrary. Pull-ups are good and there is nothing wrong with doing them occasionally – but again – they are NOT, I repeat, NOT required.

What I highly recommend is monkey bar work of the type I mention in the book about pull-ups – THOSE will really build your shoulder area and grip way more than regular pull-ups ever could.

Long story short – focus on the pushups – the floor pushups – and focus on getting better at them EVERY SINGLE day. You’ll find this philosophy reaps rich dividends indeed, my friend.

And that’s that for now. Back again with more!



P.S. – Here are two books that you really need to be reading if what I said above interests you –

P.S #2 – The rest of it is all available HERE: – Products

P.S. #3 – If you’re one of the folks that would like to be part of the “early bird discount” group I’ve set up for upcoming BLOCKBUSTER “Zero To Hero”, let me know! The book should  be on the site November 25, and I’m giving people that contact me before this date about it a HUGE, HUGE discount on the book price. Contact me via email in case you’re interested!

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