Lessons Learned–100 Pull-Ups a Day for 100 Days

Even as a fitness professional, I struggle to stay consistent with my workouts. I know that may surprise you, but I’m human, just like you and I struggle with the same issues. I’ve learned that I need to create challenges every once in awhile to keep my motivation high.

Most recently, I decided to challenge myself to 100 pull-ups a day for 100 days—that’s 10,000 pull-ups in a little over 3 months.

I am proud to say I completed this with near perfection. The only slip up was one day I forgot and went to bed with 20 to go. Waking up the next morning I realized it and did those plus that day’s 100.

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->-> Click here to watch my pull-up video on my personal Facebook page <-<- 

This in many ways was one of the toughest challenges I have ever put my body through. It was so tough because of the grind of 100 consecutive days. It didn’t matter if I was traveling, working 18 hours, had a nagging injury, or so on, I had to get it done. No excuses, I did it.

Why… Because I try my best to live up to my word and my commitment, both to myself and to you. I publicly put it out there to the world, which in turn gave me extra support and accountability.

On day 94, it was 9:30 at night and I was completely exhausted. I hadn’t done any pull-ups and had no desire to do so. Instead, I decided to take a 2 hour nap on the couch and wake up at 11:30 pm and do my 100.

I have had many trainers, clients and friends ask me how it was. I will give you a few pros and cons.

Cons:  

  • My lats (major pull-up muscles) became severely overtrained starting around day 25 and never really recovered. It became nearly impossible for me to raise my arms completely up because it felt like they were going to rip from the bone. The first 10 pull-ups each day made me want to cry it hurt so bad. This is why we trainers say to not lift similar muscle groups on consecutive days.
  • The daily grind of the challenge decreased my desire to lift and workout the rest of my body with weights. I am embarrassed to admit it, but I hardly lifted during the three months. I trained hard in stair climbing and biking, though, during this time.
  • I lost the joy of pull-ups because it became a chore and a burden.

Pros:

  • When starting the challenge I could do 14 pull-ups in a row at 190 lbs and 6’5. I can now do 29 straight pull-ups at the age of 32. A couple years ago, I trained hard in pull-ups and did 21, so I am blowing those numbers out of the water.
  • It forced me to be extremely disciplined each day regarding the pull-ups. I would have to seek it out and be very intentional. It became a non-negotiable in my life to go to bed having done 100 pull-ups. It became part of who I am.
  • My back, biceps and grip are extremely strong right now, and despite the fact that I didn’t lift much else, my body looks very fit and strong.
  • This experience has given me confidence that I can set a seemingly overwhelming goal for myself and achieve it.

Now it is your turn… What goal or challenge would you like to set for yourself?