Rahul Mookerjee

Today I'll cover a fairly common question - are sit-ups better than crunches, or vice versa - and why. This one may ruffle a few feathers, especially if you've been fed on the "crunches isolate the abs the best" philosophy by the "experts". So be it.  .  .

Long time readers of this blog (and those that have read my book) will know that I've always spoken out against crunches. The crunch, if you didn't know it already, is an exercise that requires you to lie down on the floor, "focus" on your upper abs (the six pack muscles) and lift your upper back ever so slightly off the floor - your mid/lower back does NOT move while performing the exercise. That's one crunch. The "experts" advocate doing this for high repetitions, 50-100 being a bare minimum.

A sit-up on the other hand is an exercise where you lie down on your back, and then use your core muscles to pull yourself up to a sitting position. You then repeat for as many reps as you can handle.

Now, which one sounds simpler? You got it - the sit-up - but does that make it less effective than the crunch? Not a chance in purgatory, my friend, and I'll tell you why.

First, the crunch is an abnormal movement which focuses on isolating certain small muscles to the exclusion of the other core muscles (in other words, to the exclusion of the "larger picture"). And I've always spoken out AGAINST isolationist movements. Your body works as a WHOLE, not as seperate muscles; so training it that way is always more effective. Additionally, isolate smaller muscles too much, and you've got an injury waiting to happen. It's really quite simple - ALWAYS choose exercises that work your body as a whole, rather than in bits and pieces.

Second, remember that you need to work exercises that are HARD and make you actually WORK to complete the movement as opposed to easy exercises that barely make you break a sweat. I hate to say it, but the simple sit-up is a FAR tougher movement than the so-called "modern" crunch. The situp works your ENTIRE midsection and makes you WORK to have to sit up as opposed to a crunch where you simply lift yourself two inches or so off the floor using your upper abs, and then do that for reps. If you don't believe me, do traditional sit-ups in proper form for reps, and tell me how they compare to crunches when it comes to making you puff and pant.

Third and this ties into #2: You use way more muscles in a situp than you do in a crunch. Sit-ups strengthen everything in the core - the lower back, front and lower abdominals, hip flexors, and even the obliques. Crunches on the other hand work a bit of the upper abs - and that's it. Now, think about this - what good does it do you to have two strong muscles in the core region, while your lower back and hips are weak? That sort of training is like inviting injury to your doorstep - so avoid it. Train your core as a whole - not seperate bits and pieces.

Last, and by no means least, the situp has been a preferred choice for training the midsection for ages. All strength athletes (boxers, wrestlers, sprinters etc) do plenty of sit-ups as a part of their regular routine. Mike Tyson did 500 pushups and 1000 situps as part of his daily routine, but we never heard of him doing crunches, do we? The great Herschel Walker did around 3500 situps as part of HIS routine - but nowhere do I read about him doing crunches. And the list goes on and on.

So, those are but a few reasons why I avoid the crunch like the plague - and it's why I suggest YOU do the same as well. Leave the crunches for the "toners" and "gym bunnies" - if your seriously considering strengthening your core, the sit-up is what you need to be doing - as opposed to "pumping" out high rep crunches.

And yes, sit-ups are by no means the only - or the best- way to train your core. There are many exercises that do an even better job at core training, but some of these may be too advanced for the beginner. Heck, sit-ups can prove to be a great workout even for the experienced athlete - and I've given you two examples of the same.

The simplest and most uncomplicated things usually work the best - and the humble sit-up is no exception to the rule!

Best regards,


PS: Along with sit-ups, there are other very useful exercises that you need to be doing to train your core to the fullest. Grab a copy of Fast and Furious Fitness ASAP to learn what these are!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012 08:41

Too much volume?

My last note on doing 500 pushups a day seems to have attracted quite a few readers. This seems to be a favorite topic for many folks - and not without good reason. 

Anyway, one reader that stumbled upon the blog recently wrote in to tell me that while my goal of doing 500 pushups daily was a great one, I was simply "doing too much" daily and that would hinder, rather than aid, my progress. He also stated that the exercises I do after (or sometimes before) my pushup workout can be a workout unto themselves, and asked me why I needed to do that many things in one workout.

His final question was whether that many pushups a day really built one's strength up "beyond a certain point".

Hmm, interesting points/questions - and those are questions a lot of people have (especially the last one), so I'll address them here as well.

First, note that "too much" is a personal thing. Doing 50 pushups a day may be way too much someone that's never done a pushup in their lives, and doing 500 or more a day is routine for professional strength athletes (boxers, wrestlers, strongmen etc). And remember that whatever your goal is, you need to WORK UP TO IT. In my case, 500  is what my current goal is - and so I'm working up to it by doing 300 odd daily.

Second, the reader is RIGHT in saying some of the exercises I do before/after the pushups can be a regular workout unto themselves. But here's the thing - I don't do a "high volume" of everything. As an example, I may do 300 pushups in a workout - but I'll do only 10 handstand pushups, 25 pull-ups, and three sets of 10 reps of ab exercises to finish things off. This may still sound like a lot of "volume" for someone that hasn't been working out hard, but it really isn't for an experienced trainee. So no, I don't do TWO workouts one after the other - and neither should you - but it doesn't hurt to "keep in touch" with supplementary exercises while focusing on your main goal.

And as for the last question - well - the answer is obvious enough to me, but a lot of people don't readily believe me when I tell them that YES, doing 500 pushups in perfect form daily WILL build a ton of strength. This goes double for those that lift weights, and believe the ONLY way to get stronger is to lift heavier weights. Well, I'm not going to attempt to outargue my weight lifting friends, but here's something that might make you believe - pick a number of pushups that are hard for you to do - and then do them daily in good form until that number becomes easy to do. At that point, go into the gym and test yourself on your favorite "lift", be that bench presses, rows, or even the golden pull-up.

I think your going to be amazed at what you find out - and what you find out will likely be that ALL your upper body lifts have improved.

Still need more evidence? Well, you've heard me talk about handstand pushups and the amazing levels of power they build when done correctly. Handstand pushups are impossible to do for most people - especially for reps, and when I first started, I was no exception to this rule. So what I did was work my regular pushups harder and harder - until one fine day, I felt good enough test myself on handstand pushups again.

And get this - I was not simply aiming to do one or two in good form. No, my test was doing two sets of TEN in good form - something I could never do before.

And do you know what? After doing pushups on a daily basis (at that point I was doing about 170 or so), doing handstand pushups was a BREEZE. I popped off 12 in good form when I tried - and banged out an even 10 the next time. So much for the "high volume" not building strength - it sure did in my case.

So what all this boils down to is that training, at the end of the day, is very much a PERSONAL thing. YOUR goals, YOUR current physical condition, YOUR desire to improve and other things are what determine your success -  or failure when it comes to training. And remember that there's no one "best" way for everyone - sure, there are guidelines, but you've got to find out what works best for you - and then DO it - it's just that simple.

Anyhow, this post has turned out a bit longer than expected, so I'll end it here - but a long post was required to do justice to the topic. Thanks again to those that send in questions and are regular readers - I appreciate the interest all of you have shown!

Up and ahead,


PS: The very idea of doing 100, or 500 pushups in one workout can sound pretty intimdating to the average person - but it doesn't have to be that way. Remember that you can achieve any goal you set your mind to, provided you have the right general guidance - and Fast and Furious Fitness provides you with just that. Click on HERE to grab your copy ASAP!

"“Every man should be able to save his own life. He should be able to swim far enough, run fast and long enough to save his life in case of emergency and necessity. He also should be able to chin himself a reasonable number of times, as well as to dip a number of times, and he should be able to jump a reasonable height and distance."

So said the renowned old time strongman and fitness scion, Earle Liederman. For those of you that don't know, Earle was one of the leading strongmen of his time, and the creator of a highly succesful mail order bodybuilding course. (Note: This was back in the "days" when bodybuilders were, for the most part, truly fit, strong and healthy - unlike their modern bloated counterparts).

Have to say that I completely agree with what Earlie said - sage wisdom, as the term goes. It's a pity such things aren't made part of school curriculums worldwide - we'd be sending a much more different message to kids than we do these days with all the muscle magazines and steriod inflated gym hulks bragging about the peak of their biceps. We'd be starting them off young - and more importantly, they'd start off on the RIGHT path - that is, the path to REAL strength and lifelong health as opposed to what most modern days kids have in mind these days.

And it's sad, but most adults these days would be hard pressed to fulfil even ONE of the "general" requirements above. Let's take a brief gander at some specifics he mentioned and see how the average gym goer matches up: 

"Swim at least half a mile or more" Doubtful for the average adult, unless we're talking about a swimming pool where you can rest on the wall in between laps

"Run at top speed two hundred yards or more" - would be impossible for most people, including most that train in gyms on a regular basis.

"Jump over obstacles higher than his waist" - Most folks would end up straining their lower backs doing this - if at all they could do it.

"Pull his body upward by the strength of his arms, until his chin touches his hands, at least fifteen to twenty times" - a definite NO for 99.9% of the populace.

"Dip between parallel bars or between two chairs at least twenty-five times or more" - Ditto

"If he can accomplish these things he need have no fear concerning the safety of his life should he be forced into an emergency from which he alone may be able to save himself." - True enough.  .  .

And while I may not agree with the numbers and exact requirements, I have to say that Earle painted a pretty decent picture of what the average person should be able to accomplish without too much exertion. I'd modify the numbers slightly, and perhaps delete a couple of the requirements while adding my own (hanging on to a chinning bar for time would be one of my requirements), but still, he's got it spot on for the most part.

Now, how do you make sure YOU build yourself up to able to do all this? 

Well, you have to train the right way, and you have to train regularly. And most of the advice you'll find out there will NOT help you achieve these goals. Lifting weights and yanking away on a lat pulldown machine in the gym will not help you bang out 15 or more chins in a row. Running for hours on the treadmill may be making you think you're getting enough "cardio", but no way is that going to build you up to running all out for 200 yards or more - and I mean running ALL OUT, not a lazy jog.

What will set you on the right track is training NATURALLY. And that means doing sensible exercises that work the entire body, or lots of muscle groups at the very least - exercises that give you REAL strength, as opposed to bloated muscles that may look good in a T-shirt, but have little value when push comes to shove.

To drive that point home - how many modern day bodybuilders do you really think could accomplish 15 decent chins in a row? How many could hang off the ledge of a building for five minutes straight until "help arrived"? Ok, hypothetical scenario to be sure, but you get what I'm saying - bloated steriod powered muscles may "look" good, but when there's a life-death situation around the corner, I'll have the functionally fit guy in my corner always - no questions asked.

So, thats some food for thought for the day - let me know what you guys think!

Best regards,


PS: To build the kind of strength and fitness leves that Earle demands of every man (and woman), the exercises in Fast and Furious Fitness are JUST what the doctor ordered. If you don't have your copy as yet, what you are waiting for? Grab your copy NOW, and watch a whole new world open up to you.

Thursday, 12 April 2012 08:36

Cheaters never prosper

Was having a whale of a time exercising this morning. Fun, but at the same time, I was dripping sweat like no-one's business, and it was getting increasingly harder to finish the workout as I progressed. Funny how that works, huh? Fun - but tough as tough can get at the same time - contrary to popular modern opinion on workouts, the two do NOT have to be mutually exclusive - and those of you that train hard know exactly what I'm on about.

Anyway, it would have been easy to "go easy" on myself during the workout. I could lower myself that much less on a pushup, or I could use a bit of momentum to "cheat" on the rep, and get it done - and truth be told, I'd probably still have got a hell of a workout even by cheating a little.

But I didn't. I made sure I completed EACH rep in PICTURE PERFECT form, no matter how tough it was. No matter how hot I felt, no matter how my chest screamed and no matter how much I sweated. No, I completed each rep as it should be completed - in letter perfect form - and I can proudly say that I got a far better workout by doing that than if I had cheated my way through some of the tougher reps.

And therein lies a very important lesson that will not only make your workouts more productive, but will also build plenty of internal fortitude and mental strength. That being, to keep going no matter what. To keep going - and to keep going the RIGHT way - with no cheating allowed.

And it doesn't matter what your actual workout looks like. You can be doing 500 pushups or 50 - it all depends on how fit you are, and how hard you've been training; but no matter what it is, make sure you get it done. More importantly, make sure you get it done with proper form, concentration and focus. Stack on a few workouts like this one after the other, and you'll literally see (and feel) your body change before your eyes.

Yes, it wil be HARD. Yes, you'll feel like every ounce of strength and stamina is being drained from your body. Yes, you may feel like quitting halfway through a real tough set. But guess what - THIS type of training is what produces real gains.

So,  if your doing pull-ups - you need to make your chin is over the bar on EVERY SINGLE rep, no matter how hard it might feel at the time - or the rep doesn't count. If your climbing a long and steep hill daily in hot, humid and sapping conditions like I did in China, you need to remind yourself that sapping weather doesn't mean you stop training, and doesn't allow you to train half-heartedly.

I could give you many more examples, but I think you get my drift.

Vim, vigor and gusto, my friend - and perfect form on EVERY rep.

Simple enough formula, but you'd be amazed the results this simple formula produces!

Best regards,


PS: I talk more about my daily hill climb in China, mental strength, and other important things in Fast and Furious Fitness - grab a copy NOW!


Monday, 02 April 2012 06:53

Can "heavier" folks do handstands?

I've often spoken about the amazing benefit that one can get by doing handstand pushups (and handstands) on a regular basis. Talk about some serious, serious strength gains - especially in the upper arms, shoulders, back and chest - and talk about some SERIOUS cardio benefits when you combine this exercise with some others. The handstand pushup lends itself toa fearsome workout, even if I'm saying that myself after completing 3 sets of 10 slow, shoulder popping handstand pushups.   .   .

But, the very nature of this exercise seems to scare most people off. First, holding your body in an upside down position is in itself not "easy" for most people to think about doing (as opposed to doing - note the difference) - and those trainees that are slightly (or more so) on the heavier side will automatically shy away from them thinking that they are "too big" to do the exercise without injuring themselves.

Bad, bad mistake - remember that when performed with good form, and adequate strength, just about ANYONE can do handstand pushups safely. Executing the movement correctly might be harder to do if your on the heavier side, but you CAN do it - provided you use good form.

And don't just take my word for it - look at some of the "heavier" folks that have done it in the past. Take the English wrestler Bert Assirati - he weighed no less than 240 lbs, and he'd perform movements like the iron cross - and a ONE ARM handstand for reps without giving it a second thought. John Davis (I'm sure you all know who he is!) could do sets of 10 handstand pushups at a bodyweight of 200 lbs - and that ain't no joke either.

And the list likely doesn't stop there either.

Now, I know that these men perfected their skill through hours of practice, which the average trainee isn't willing to put in. I also know that these were some EXCEPTIONALLY strong men - but nowhere does it say that YOU cannot become exceptionally strong through regular training. And while these men may have been on the heavier side, note that it doesn't mean they were FAT - they were big and strong, but not necessarily FAT - there's a difference, and it's an important one.

And I know that some of you are going to Google the guys I just talked about, and come back with "well, he doesn't have a toned midsection", or "where is the 8 pack", or similar comments. And my response will always be the same "Guys, REAL strength has got absolutely nothing to do with a six pack". Why? Well, I've been over that a bunch of times (see the blog for more), but take your average guy with a six pack, and see how well he does on handstands as compared to a wrestler or real strength enthusiast (NOT bodybuilder).

Last, but not least, this isn't an excuse to get fat or heavy - all I'm saying is that being big and strong (a.k.a "heavy") does NOT mean you cannot reap the benefits of this amazing exercise. It takes practice - lots of it - will power to stick at it - but it CAN be done - and it can be done SAFELY at that.

And that's that for today - over and out!

Best regards,


PS: Fast and Furious Fitness shows you handstand variations that will build shoulders like boulders: - http://rahulmookerjee.com/index.php/articles/83-fast-and-furious-fitness-the-book

Saturday, 31 March 2012 06:46

The importance of regular core training

This morning, I did a workout that hammered the entire body, but focused a lot more on the core than I generally do during my regular workouts. Note that this does NOT mean I don't work the core every time I work out - what I'm trying to say is that I concentrated especially on the core today. I do this from time to time, and am absolutely delighted with the progress I'm making. 

Remember that the core is one of the most important parts of the body you can train. Train nothing else but the core, and you'll have good all round development - but concentrate mostly on the "beach muscles" as most of the gymgoers do, and you'll end up as a disconnected bunch of bulky muscles which lack real strength and power.

I could give you a host of reasons behind why core training is so important - and indeed, that would a great topic to cover in a future email, but for now, bear in mind that the core is responsible for connecting your upper body to your lower body - and for facilitating transfer of power as well. If you've got a weak core, there's simply no way you can perform to your full potential on any decent exercise.

Anyway, as I said, today was a "core training" day for me and it went well. One of the exercises I did in my routine was straight leg hanging leg raises for reps - while holding for time - this ONE exercise alone is enough to bring the average gym goer to his knees within a matter of minutes. I did some other exercises as well - exercises that are ignored for the most part - and then finished things off with gymnastic bridging - another superb exercise that I cannot endorse enough.

On that note, when most people talk about bridging - they are referring to the neck bridge, or the "wrestler's bridge". And while these are great as well, the gymnastic bridge is a fantastic variation that you can use from time to time - or use exclusively as a "finisher" if you wish. For those of you that are interested in learning the gymnastic bridge, be sure and grab a copy of Fast and Furious Fitness where you'll learn how to do it the right way. Do NOT attempt these unless you have the form down pat - this goes double for all exercises, but especially tough core exercises.

And make sure you make core training a regular part of your routine - not just something to do "at the end of your workout", or "something else to do after the cardio". That is NOT how to approach core training - you need to approach core training with utmost seriousness, and devote certain days almost exclusively to core training. Do so religiously, and you'll make great progress in all your other exercises as well.

And that's the tip for the day - back again tomorrow!

Best regards


PS: There are many other great core movements that you can do that will give you a fantastic workout - for more on this, see Fast and Furious Fitness.

The importance of regular core training

This morning, I did a workout that hammered the entire body, but focused a lot more on the core than I generally do during my regular workouts. I di



Thursday, 29 March 2012 06:02

One thing at a time, pardner

One of the more common mistakes many new trainees make is to do too many exercises in a given workout. This is sometimes due to misinformation from the muscle mags or from junk posted on the Internet - you know, the type of routines that purpotedly take 3-4 hours daily to complete, include just about every exercise under the sun and then some (except the good ones) and put plenty of emphasis on "pumping and toning".

And sometimes, it's not even that - you'll find a beginner raring to go with GOOD exercises. He'll read about all the different types of good exercises he can do, and he'll start working them - but trouble is, a lot of times, he ends up trying to get good at ALL of them - at the same time. And this usually leads to frustration as he's attempting something that isn't easily done (unless you spend your entire day training, and even then it's tough to improve on tons of exercises at the same time). This leads to frustration, the trainee stops getting the results he'd like from his routine, gets disillusioned with it, and may end up dropping it altogether. Not good.

It's more common than you'd think, and yet, it's easily avoided by keeping this one maxim in your mind "One thing at a time, partner" (pardner, if you so choose).

Remember that it's ALWAYS better to pick a HANDFUL of exercises, and literally grind your body into the dust trying to get better at them, than picking 50 exercises and moving from one to the other without really improving on any of them. If your doing things right,  and giving it your all, then it should be impossible for you to focus fully on - and make good progress in - more than a handful of exercises.

For instance, I focused on JUST pushups and pullups for my upper body routine this morning. That's it - no dips, no supplementary exercises I often do - just pushups and pullups. And my shoulders, chest and forearms feel like they're about to explode - at one point, I was doing good just to make it past a set of pushups and move on to the pull ups.

And I'm not saying not to try new things - not at all. Once you get good at a certain exercise, by all means try another one and get good at that as well - that's what I do myself. But the thing to avoid is "flitting from exercise to exercise without getting good at any of them" - do so, and you'll make great gains.

And just so you know, this is just as applicable to advanced trainees as it is to those that are just starting out. It doesn't matter if you can bang out 500 pushups per workout, or if you max out at 50 - the advice is just as applicable. Focus on ONE thing at a time for a given workout, and literally work that exercise (and your body) into the ground.

Incorporate this bit of advice into your training, and watch your results go through the roof in very little time.

Best regards,


PS: For more shoulder popping workouts, Fast and Furious Fitness is what you need to be focusing on.

Most of the modern day theories about training the abdomen aim at developing the trainee's "six pack", to get the desired "look". Whenever someone talks about a healthy midsection, the first thought that springs to mind is "does have a six pack"? Apparently these six muscles at the front of the stomach are the ones that determine if your in good shape or not. In fact, I've seen razor thin folks with six packs that were unable to do a single pull-up - and they were being referred to as "fit". Uh, not in my book though.   .   .

People have literally forgotten that "abdominal training" is NOT "six pack training". Further, REAL abdominal training is actually all about CORE training - a concept that is an alien to most people as pull-ups done to the chest are for those tugging away at the lat pulldown machines.

And so, we have a host of modern day exercises that claim to get the job done. When one talks about ab training, the first exercise that springs to mind for most people is the "crunch" - an exercise that supposedly "isolates" the abdominal muscles, and allows you to develop them to the fullest. Or you have folks talking about gadgets such as the "tummy trimmer" - this particular contraption was one I saw advertised on late night TV once - a semi-circular sort of instrument in which your lower back "rests" and you rock back and forth - supposedly developing the abdominals. The advertisement claims to have your "abs showing within 10 days without any other exercise". 

Uh-huh.  .  .

And note that while there's nothing inherently wrong with wanting the "six pack" look; most people mess up in that they sacrifice real core strength in favor of crash diets and thousands of crunches. It's OK to get a six pack as a RESULT of your training - but training FOR a six pack is usually a big mistake.

And this brings to me to another topic - forgotten ab exercises. Despite what the "experts" nowadays say, crunches are probably the worst way to train your midsection. They do NOT engage the core to any degree - instead they attempt to isolate certain muscles which defeats the purpose of training the abs in the first place. The old timers did plenty of situps - but those have somehow fallen by the wayside in favor of the "crunch", which is much easier to do - and given how modern day training theories work, that doesn't surprise me one bit.

And while situps are great, and will give you a good core workout, there are many, many other "forgotten" core exercises that will get the job done FAR more efficiently - and will bring even the strongest man to his knees ultimately. Here is a sample "core" routine consisting of some of the core exercises the old timers did: -

- Warm up

- Bear crawl for 30 seconds to a minute

- 50 situps

- Bear crawl for 30 seconds to a minute

- Hanging Leg Raises (shoot for 10 reps, and try and hold for at least 10 seconds on each rep)

- Crab walk for 30 seconds to a minute

- Table pushups

- Hanging "L" holds (10 reps, hold for at least 10 seconds on each rep)

- 50 situps

There, that's a "simple" 15 minute or so routine that should get your core quaking like an earthquake's hit it (along with your grip and shoulders as well). No crunches, and believe me, you won't NEED them once you are through with this.

And if these exercises sound like completely alien to you - well, that's because they've been ignored in favor of easier exercises that don't give you half the results these will. Do them in proper form - the way I teach you in Fast and Furious Fitness - and you'll reap dividends you won't believe.

And one last thing - diet is of paramount importance when it comes to ab training. Actually, any training for that matter - but especially when it comes to abs. You can exercise all day long, but you'll never completely burn the fat off (and keep it off) unless you combine a good exercise routine with a decent diet, such as what I advocate in the Simple and Effective Diet.

So, train the way the old timers did - and follow a good healthy diet along with it - and that's really all you need!

Ok, that endeth today's tip.   .    .

Best regards,



Friday, 23 March 2012 06:55

What if you can't do a single pull-up?

Pull-ups are one of the most "complete" exercises that I have ever done. A workout consisting mainly of pull-ups and related exercises will give you strength benefits that are almost unparalleled. You'll build your ENTIRE upper body - especially your back, shoulders, arms and core. And if you do them right, some of the "related" exercises can give you a decent cardiovascular workout as well.

YES, you heard me right - certain types of exercises that fit into the "pull-up" category do have the ability to give you a cardiovascular workout as well. I'm sure your agog to find out just how, and I'll speak about it in a later post, but for now, let's concentrate on another question that is very common. That being "What if I cannot do a single pullup?"

And the reason I'm focusing on this for now is simple - more than 90% of adults cannot do a proper pull-up - and I'm being generous by saying 90% - it's probably more like 95% or so.

The reasons for this vary - some people may not be strong enough, and some are too overweight to do them (I've seen many cases of this). Some may just not WANT to do them because they've been brainwashed into using the lat pulldown machine with false assurances - and if you know someone that falls into that category, well, your not alone.

But whatever it is, the fact remains that a lot of people are unable to do a single full pull-up with proper form and range of motion - even those that genuinely want to get good at this amazing exercise. So, what next? How do you get that first elusive full rep in?

Well, my answer may surprise you. It's NOT doing "negative reps" as is written on most of the Internet, although the concept of negative reps is not a bad one in itself. It's NOT developing the strength to do pull-ups by lifting weights. And I won't even say the secret lies in losing weight if your overweight - though that also helps.

What is it, then.

Well, simply put - just put yourself in your shoes when you were a "young un" runing around in the playground - and do what you'd do back then to improve.

Huh? What good can that do, you might ask. And I can see why your saying that - but still, think about it for a minute. When you were a kid unable to do an exercise (let's say pull-ups), or were just starting out, did you research hours on the Internet for how to do them?

When a baby starts to walk - does it ask others or research how to start walking before it does so?

The answer to both these questions is a big fat NO. The kid simply tries doing pullups until he can do them, and the baby keeps on trying to walk until it can - it's that simple.

The kid does "half-pullups", or "quarter pull-ups" (or whatever he can). He then comes back the next day, and the next, and the next - and does much the same thing. He's not in the least bit worried about "focusing on the lats", or "negative reps", or "slow reps", or anything of that sort - he simply DOES what he can - and before he knows it, he's banging them out with no problem at all - without even thinking about it.

And thats what you need to do as well if you cannot do a single pull-up in proper form. Keep doing what you can, and you'll eventually improve. If all you can do is "half pullups", do sets of those regularly. If you can do one pull-up, but can only do halves after that - then do that - and your strength will improve.

YES - the other things I mentioned (negative reps and all that) do help as well, but what helps the most is doing things naturally. Do what you can - do it regularly, and you'll improve for sure.

And while I'm sure there are some folks out there that will titter upon reading this and say "oh, thats nothing so complicated" - well, no, it's not - but it's also a fact the simplest and most effective things are often ignored by most people!

And as I close out today's email, here's a quote to remember - "Do the thing and you will have the power. But they that do not the thing, had not the power."  ~ Emerson, Ralph Waldo.

He's said it better than I ever could.

Best regards,


PS: Fast and Furious Fitness talks about many such other tips that will have you doing pull-ups like never before - grab your copy NOW.


Wednesday, 21 March 2012 06:45

"You've got such huge, bulky arms!"

My family members (other than my wife) don't think much of my training at all. And come to think of it, it's not that difficult to understand WHY they don't.

Why not? Well, here are but a few reasons: -

Does my routine include running on treadmills for hours while watching TV?

Does it involve working on a menacing looking contraption (er, machine) that looks like it was brought straight out of Star Trek - with absolutely no concern for form or even caution while tugging at the cables of this behemoth? 

Does it involve keeping the cell phone on - and answering it - while exercising?

I could go on and on, but you get the idea. It's sad, but true - all of what I've said above holds true for the average person - especially that last point about the cell phone, and since I don't believe in doing any of that, my routine's obviously "strange" and "doesn't work". Oh, and I don't put much emphasis on six packs (and don't have one myself) - so the routine obviously "is pointless".


Anyway, the other night one of my family members (I'm not going to say who) made this sarcastic comment about "Oh, you've got such huge bulky arms. What's the point of all this? You exercise to excess!".

And that  particular comment almost made me laugh out LOUD - though I managed not to.

First, having huge bulky arms (bulky as in strong) and broad, powerful shoulders is NOTHING to be ashamed of. Modern day training "wisdom" emphasizes hours of "pumping the chest" but devotes little time to developing the shoulders and arms - and this is one of the biggest mistakes one can make. And even if we set aside this "wisdom", well, isn't STRENGTH what most folks would like to attain? The family member that made this comment hasn't done one pushup in his entire life - and that in itself says a lot.

Second, my routines don't take longer than 30 minutes (at most). I can do more if I want to - but I don't have to - and I don't think that time period is "excessive".

Third, if the routines "don't work" - how would I develop big bulky arms? You see the point - these sorts of comments are common when your training hard, and doing things DIFFERENTLY from other people - but most of the time, they have little substance behind them.

Anyway, rest assured (if you need assurance on this one) that having big, strong arms and shoulders to match is NOT something to be ashamed of. And no, doing endless sets of bicep curls or "tricep extensions" won't cut the mustard - and won't bring you any results as well. If you really want huge upper arms, arms that look - and ARE - as strong as they look, then follow the upper body routines I mention in Fast and Furious Fitness - and you'll soon be sporting a set of arms that you'll be more than proud of. 

And last, but not least, remember to work the shoulders and back into the ground as well - these are KEY to developing huge arms. You should feel TIRED after you got done with your workout - good, but tired as well. In fact, I just got done with my workout - doing exercises I do daily - and my triceps are singing out loud to me as I type this.

And THAT'S the type of training that will bring fantastic results for you as well. 

All for now - train hard, and be safe!

Best regards,


PS: The kind of training that will bring superlative results for you can be found right HERE.

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