No Excuse Pull Up Plan

By Antoniette Pacheco

Progressive Pull Up Plan

Understand the Pull Up mechanism 

Lose the lat-pull downs and assisted pull up machines. The only “machine” necessary for you to master a real pull up faster and stronger, is your own body. Body weight exercises require you to utilize more than just one muscle group at a time, so a regular bodybuilding program just won’t cut it. Not only will it take a lot longer to strengthen those stabilizer muscles, you’ll also need to adjust to the challenging movement pattern of carrying your own body weight I’ll show you how in my Pull Up plan..

The 3 Ultimate Exercise’s

There are just 3 ultimate exercises that will help you dial in to proper technique as well as building the upper-body vertical pulling strength that other machines just cannot replicate. These moves will also improve grip strength for the Pull Up and exercise endurance. Note that these exercises are going to say “chin up” since that grip is easier for beginners, but by all means you can do the same exercises in an overhand grip too which is a correct Pull Up.

Isometric Hold

Holding yourself above the bar may seem simple, but looks can be deceiving. This hold will have you shaking in seconds as you keep constant tension on your muscles. This movement will help build up the strength that will carry over to exercise proficiency.

Stand on a bench, chair or box to get you as close as possible to the bar. Grasp the bar with an underhand grip, then jump up so your chest is nearly touches it. Hold it for as long as you can. Start with 5 seconds working your way up to 20-30 seconds.

Week 1,2,3 Week 4,5,6
3 sets of 5 reps 5 sets of 10 reps

Eccentric Chin Up

Generally, we are much stronger in the lowering motion of an exercise than the lifting. Working on lowering yourself as slowly as possible puts your muscles into overdrive throughout the entire range of motion. Which, in turn, will help you build the overall strength you’ll need to pull yourself up in the opposite direction. Come down slow, to eventually come up strong! Stand on a bench, chair or box again, and grab the bar just like in the isometric hold position. Hold for a few seconds, then bring yourself down as slowly as possible. Do a count of 5 seconds as you come down. Once you’ve reach full extension, jump off and start the process again for 5 reps, and increase to 10 reps.

Week 1,2,3 Week 4,5,6
3 sets of 5 reps 5 sets of 10 reps

Band Assisted Chin Up

This may seem similar to the pull up machine, but not quite. The band does provide some assistance, but it’s still much more challenging and will help you reach your first pull up much faster. As you pull your body up towards the bar, the band’s support decreases so you end up utilizing more of your own strength. Loop a resistance band onto a pull up bar (there are different size bands, so find the one that’s to your current strength level). Place either your knee or foot in the band (whichever is easier for you) with an underhand grip, arms completely straight. Pull up, pause, then bring yourself down slowly returning to the starting position. Continue for 5-10 reps.

Week 1,2,3 Week 4,5,6
3 sets of 5 reps 5 sets of 10 reps

That’s it! Pretty simple, right? But make no mistake, these exercises will have you repping out those pull-ups in no time. I recommend adding these exercises to your normal lifting routine. If you can add more time, reps or sets, the better. Even when you achieve your pull up goal, keep adding these to your routine to continue increasing strength and stamina. Never stop progressing!

Antoniette Pacheco

28, is an online fitness enthusiast, a calisthenics and bodybuilding expert, personal trainer, former Marine, devoted mother and advocate for living a healthy lifestyle. She has designed and named a line of fitness apparel called “Never4Fit”, in partnership with her boyfriend and calisthenics star, Frank Medrano. Antoinette’s jaw-dropping workouts on YouTube, both alone and with Frank, have attracted hundreds of thousands of viewers. Antoniette has also offered videos demonstrating the preparation of vegan recipes. Born and raised in California, she resides in Los Angeles, with her 8-year-old daughter, Siren.

Instagram: @antoniette_pacheco



YOUTUBE: Mind Over Matter – Antoniette Pacheco Training Interview, The Fittest Couple on Earth