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Could I get some feedback on this workout plan?

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  • Could I get some feedback on this workout plan?

    Hi everybody,

    I have been doing primal exercises for 5-6 weeks. I go with a friend to the park and we exercise in the open, which feels much better that receiving fluorescent light inside a gym.

    The exercises we make each session are:

    * Pullups (with separated arms)
    * Bicep pullups (arms at shoulder length)
    * Ring pullups
    * Pushups
    * Bear crawling
    * Sprint

    For all pullups we make 4 series of whatever number of pullups we manage to achieve. So far I have been able to go from half a "normal" pullup to 3 and it's being great.

    For pushups we usually make 4 series of 10, and if we are feeling good by then we make a 5th series of whatever number of repetitions we can achieve. This depends on the day, because energy levels are not always the same, and we understand this is a good thing.

    Usually we choose between sprinting and bear crawling because after bear crawling if we try sprinting our thighs ache a little.

    I try to follow a mostly primal diet, but since I do not have any problems with milk I sometimes drink a liter for the extra protein. I am a bit skinny so gaining some weight in muscle form would be welcomed

    So far everything seems to be good: I am feeling more energized, more optimistic and stronger. I have some questions though:

    1) Do you think the workout is a bit "upper-body"? Should we be adding some more exercises for the lower side of the body? Which would be some good exercises to add?

    2) In your opinion, should we be doing these exercises 2x per week or 3x per week?

    3) Do I need to train the muscles until failure? And how do I know I have achieved that? Most plainly, is there any biological indicator that tells you that you are working appropiately/optimally your muscles?

    I would appreciate any other comment or feedback on our workout plan (I will not call it "routine" because it's actually both funny and challenging! .

    Thanks in advance,


    P.S: By the way, we live in Seville, in the south of Spain. Any primal people nearby we would love to meet!

  • #2
    1. Yes. I would add lunges and squats. Alternate an upper and lower body movement to save time if needed.
    2. I would strength train 2x a week and sprint 1x a week. You can add other stuff to sprints if you want to create a full body conditioning workout... like sprint 100 meters, 20 pushups, walk back. Sprint 100 meters, 10 pullups, walk back.
    3. When you workout, bring it. When you can't possibly do another pushup... like you fall on your face, you've hit failure


    • #3
      Thanks for the reply arthurb999!

      Do you recommend that we do weighted lunges and squats? We are using bodyweight for the rest of the exercises, but I suppose we need to use at least a bar to do the lunges and squats?


      • #4
        If you can, yes. You can start with bw squats and lunges and add weight as needed. Even odd objects like sandbags would be great.


        • #5
          Burpees are an excellent addition to any workout.


          • #6
            Burpees are great but it really depends on what you're trying to accomplish with a paticular workout.

            For example, if I'm working on max strength, then burpees probably aren't a good choice.


            • #7
              Good point arthur. I guess I shouldn't have said that they're a good addition to ANY workout, hehe.


              • #8
                Well, I should state my objectives then:

                1) Getting a functional body. Meaning mainly strength at the moment, but also the capability of successfully undertaking physical efforts in general.
                2) Energy, in the sense of getting through the day without feeling 'destroyed'. (I have found that exercising a minimum of once per week I achieve this one.)
                3) Bulking up/gaining muscle mass

                So... am I in the right track for achieving those objectives? Or would another workout plan be more appropiate?

                And another question: we have been thinking of adding some dumbbell exercises to bring biceps and triceps to failure (those would be after all the pushups). Is this a good idea?

                Thanks for your answers people, you're awesome!



                • #9
                  "Functional body". Well I assume you mean a balance of strength, speed, flexibility, conditioning, "real world" application, etc.

                  In a typical week, I would aim for a session of the following:

                  Max strength training
                  Endurance/explosive strength training
                  General conditioning

                  Since size/strength is your main focus, max strength training should be your #1 priority. Assuming a 3x a week workout schedule:

                  M - Max strength training
                  W - alternate sprints and conditioning work
                  F - Explosive strength training
                  Sa or Su - Yoga

                  What you use for equipment is up to you... it's just a means to an end.


                  • #10
                    Thanks for your answer arthurb999!

                    Last day we introduced weighted squats and lunges in our workout, and we have found a way of making the lunges fun. Step forward, lunge with one leg, step forward, lunge with the other, repeat. Do not count repetitions but instead try to reach the other side of the park.

                    Sadly we haven't found a way of making the squats fun (I remember them being fun when I tried bodypump, but now they pale in comparison to the rest of the workout...).

                    Two questions though:

                    1) I don't think I fully understand explosive strength training. Should we be doing the same workout, but faster? Because we can't change the weight, since all but squats/lunges is done using bodyweight

                    2) We have realized that we are not training our shoulders. Could you recommend us some exercise for training the shoulder muscles? The funnier the better


                    • #11
                      Thanks for encouraging the yoga. I believe that flexibility and balance is widely overlooked on these forums. Functional fitness must include both of these.


                      • #12
                        Explosive strength training essentially refers to moving against resistance at speed so yes, you could apply those principles to your existing workout. Plyometric press ups, kipping pull ups, box jumps and bounding would all be good places to start.

                        The 'funniest' shoulder exercise I ever do is the handstand press up - it's hilarious! Supplement this with some push press and ring dips for added fun!
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