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Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:14 am
by echoyjeff222
Dang, I was reading through your log and I realized that you were on level 4 for like .. half an year?!

I just failed a level for the first time -- level four. I got through all the pushups and squats in five minutes, but only 13 pullups.

I don't want to be stuck at level four for months!! aghh! :P

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Wed Jan 04, 2012 6:41 am
by KTG
I know, I know. I'm a bit pathetic. You won't be stuck on level four for so long.

I had to take a month off in the middle for travel, which set me back a bit.

Of course, the levels also get harder, so your progress will naturally slow at some point. Frankly, I'm not even convinced that level 8 can really be done in 5 minutes with good form.

More importantly, I'm an older guy. Increasing strength is very hard-won at my age. You are a young guy. Your body will build muscle reaching for the TV remote.

But the critical thing is putting down the TV remote and building a foundation and the life-long habits now. Because, the hard truth is you will be an older guy someday too.

Remember that while there are no Simplefit police--you can do whatever works for you--the regulation approach is to do all of the pull-ups first on day 3, taking whatever breaks are required to get them all in. Then do all of the push-ups, then all of the squats.

Anyway, I expect you'll pass me up on level 5 in no time.

Level 5 - Week 7

Posted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 6:12 am
by KTG
My seventh week on Level 5. More solid progress

L5D1 - 21 rounds - Same as last week, but a little time left on the clock at the end. Still working very hard on the last few rounds of pull-ups
L5D2 - 6:14 - New PR at this level - 28 seconds off of last week.
L5D3 - 8:25 - A big breakthrough at 48 seconds better than last week.

Everything felt very solid this week. D2 felt particularly strong with all rounds pretty close to 1:15. I did an extra 37 pull-ups/chin-ups spaced through the day on Monday to get to a full 100. Some extra push-ups on Wednesday. All of the sets on D3 were the same as last week: 7-5-4-3-4-3 alternating chin-ups/pull-ups and 15-13-12-11 on the push-ups.

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 8:17 pm
by Pilgrim1312
Are you still doing a strict dead hang for pullups? I have found that my tendons dont bother me if I kip days 1 and 3. I always thought kipping was cheating. Now I see is as a great tool to have in the kit. Your thoughts?

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:46 am
by KTG
I am still doing strict dead hang with chest to bar for pullups.

I would like to tell you that this comes from my deep knowledge of human kinesiology and my unimpeachable personal integrity, but it is really mostly because I do my pullups on an old Soloflex machine. It is a very solid stand, but I suspect a kip would knock it right over.

Kipping is a legitimate functional movement that engages more muscles. My sense is that you do have to be careful that you have solid dead hang strength as a foundation since the acceleration of the kipping can put a little more stress on the shoulders and joints.

I suspect kipping may be necessary to get through levels 7 and 8.

So, your D1 D3 approach sounds like a pretty good one. You get the best of both worlds.

It would be interesting to think more about the use of different exercise forms to make Simplefit even more progressive--rather like the Convict Conditioning program. You could do a level with all chin-ups, for example, and then repeat it with mixed chin-ups and pull-ups, and then do it again with all pull-ups. Push-ups might start with just going down to where the upper-arms are parallel to the floor, then redo the level going all the way down to the chin, or to the quick hand-lift at the bottom of the movement.

An approach like that, with more finely graded progress markers, might be more motivating for some people. For now, I'm kind of into the zen of just doing the pure-form exercises and working little-by-little to bring the time down.

Level 5 - Week 8

Posted: Fri Jan 13, 2012 6:29 am
by KTG
L5D1 - 21 rounds. Same as last 3 weeks. A tiny bit slower, but stronger at the end than last week. Good form all the way through.
L5D2 - 6:00. A nice 14 second improvement. Felt very solid. I may move to 3 pull-up and 2 chin-up rounds next week (this was 3 chins and 2 pulls)
L5D3 - 8:15. 10 seconds better. More importantly, I moved the push-ups to a 18-17-16 progression instead of 15-13-12-11

My routine now is to add some more pull-ups through the day on Mondays to get to 100 for the day, and to do some extra push-ups on Wednesdays. I also interspersed a little weights work this week.

In addition to lowering the rest times between pull-up sets, I think I now need to work on speeding up the squats. I'm pretty exhausted coming out of the push-ups, and I don't think I'm pushing the squats as hard as I could.

This is my eighth week on level 5. It took me 16 weeks through level 4, so maybe this is getting near the 1/2 way point. More likely, I suspect 1/4, since these higher levels get progressively harder. My eighth week on level 4 was 25 rounds for D1, 5:51 for D2, and 6:51 for D3. The D3 distance still looks daunting.

Re: Level 5 - Week 8

Posted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:55 pm
by tmech
KTG wrote:L5D3 - 8:15. 10 seconds better. More importantly, I moved the push-ups to a 18-17-16 progression instead of 15-13-12-11

You are SMASHING me at the moment! Well done. I still do the pushups in sets of five, then dropping down to three and eventually singles. Chin ups start off at 5, but drop to 3 after the first set .. and then singles all the way. I'm very impressed at your knocking out such large sets! Inspiring -- I'm going to get working on myself!

Level 5 - Week 9

Posted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:44 am
by KTG
Thanks, tmech. I see bulking up the sets as part of the progression. The levels come slowly, but some of these other adjustments are nice intermediate steps. I was particularly anxious to get past single sets on the pull-ups because there is always a bit of a jump for me on the first one. The rest are legit dead-hang (well, sometimes I'm pulling my knees up a bit to help with the last rep).

So, today was L5D3, and I put down, or maybe I should say pulled up a big improvement.

L5D1 - 22 rounds. Nice to move up after 4 weeks at 21. I started out on pace for 24 or 25, but faded a little on the second half.
L5D2 - 6:00. Same time as last week, but I switched to 3 pull-up sets and 2 chin-up sets, instead of the other way around, so still an improvement.
L5D3 - 7:26. This felt huge. More than 45 seconds faster than last week. Again, I did 18-17-16 for push-ups. Still 7-5-4-3-4-3 alternating chin-ups/pull-ups

Monday is now my 100 pull-up/chin-up day. After the 66 for L5D1, I did two more sessions later in the day. In each case I practiced the 7-5-4-3-4-3 progression for day 3 with timed 1 minute rests in between each set. That actually brought me to 118 for the day, and I think contributed to my improvement on the timed test today. I'll try the same thing again next week, but with a little shorter rests.

I think, for the first time in my simplefit experience (and probably for the first time in my life) I no longer dread the pull-ups.

Level 5 - Week 10

Posted: Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:13 am
by KTG
Level 5 - Week 10

L5D1 - 22 rounds. Same as last week, but I was able to get in a final set of pull-ups, so a good chance of getting to 23 next week.
L5D2 - 5:45. A great 15 second improvement while holding good form. Alternated 3 pull-up sets and 2 chin-up sets.
L5D3 - 7:23. Just 3 seconds better than last week. 7-5-4-3-4-3 chin-ups/pull-ups. 18-17-16 push-ups. 51 squats.

This was another good week. On Monday I did two extra pull-up sessions later in the day. 26 pull-ups/chin-ups in each session practicing for L5D3, but with timed 45 second breaks in between sets.

A little twinge in my lower back on the D2 pull-ups. I was trying to really speed them up, while holding full range of motion and minimal lower-body movement.

Level 5 - Week 11

Posted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:25 am
by KTG
L5D1 - 23 rounds. Added 1 round. Felt good
L5D2 - 5:37. Another nice improvement. 8 seconds faster. 3 sets pull-ups & 2 sets of chin-ups (alternating).
L5D3 - 8:16. Yikes! 53 seconds slower. I tried to increase the pull-up sets, and this was my reward.

I was really feeling rested and strong and thought I could push the pull-ups a little harder on D3. I tried to do 8-6-7-5 alternating chin-ups/pull-ups. Ended up with 8-5-5-3-5 and almost a minute slower than last week, so I guess that wasn't such a good idea. Next week back to 7-5-4-3-4-3

Again, I did extra pull-ups/chin-ups on Monday to get to 100 for the day. I took it a little easy the rest of the week, apart from the Simplefit workouts.

Level 5 - Week 12 (ends and means)

Posted: Fri Feb 10, 2012 7:50 am
by KTG
L5D1 - 24. For the second week in a row added a round.
L5D2 - 5:30. Seven seconds faster. Pretty consistent at about 1:06 per round. 2 minutes rests. I think next week I'll go to all pull-ups
L5D3 - 7:06. Seventeen seconds better than previous best. Back to 7-5-4-3-4-3 on the alternating chin-ups/pull-ups.

I noticed this week that I was starting to think about my Simplefit workouts more as an end than a means. Originally, I got into this to get in shape for other activities. This week I realized that I am starting to think about Simplefit as an end in itself. I think a lot more about what other things I can do to help out my Simplefit times, instead of the other way around.

7:06 felt good for D3. The push-ups were a little weaker--I did 18-17-10-6 instead of my usual 18-17-16. I'll have to work a bit more on those. Key is still getting stronger at chin-ups/pull-ups to reduce the breaks between sets.

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:52 am
by Underdog
You're making great progress at level 5 man. Actually I too started the Simplefit workout at level 5, but on day 2 I realized that I overestimated my fitness (collapsed while doing 2nd round) and so came down to earth and started from Level 1 and that's when I started posting here. Congratz again for making such progress in this level, especially at this age!!!

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:14 pm
by tmech
Hey KTG -- I have been slack and not on the forums but wondering how you're going.

Glad to see you're still smashing it!

Re: KTG's Log

Posted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:19 am
by RadRobe

I just read your whole log and your persistance is inspiring. I hope I can get where you're at with pull ups. Good work!

Level 5 - Week 13

Posted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 4:49 am
by KTG
Thanks, guys! I'm still pushing ahead little by little. This was week thirteen at level 5.

L5D1 - 25 rounds. This is three weeks in a row increasing by 1 round. Also 75 pull-ups/chin-ups in 1 session. Number 75 was a struggle.
L5D2 - 5:34. A touch slower, but I moved to all pull-ups this week. All rounds felt pretty strong for all exercises with good form.
L5D3 - 7:03. Just a few seconds faster. I was hoping for better given how good I felt on D1 and D2.

Chin-ups/Pull-ups alternated 7-5-4-3-4-3. Push-ups 18-17-16. Did some extra pull-ups on Wednesday (8-7-6-5 with 2.5 minute rests) and lots of extra push-ups this week. That didn't help as much on D3 as I had hoped.