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WOW: I’m Gonna Be (500 Reps)

Posted By Mark Sisson On December 6, 2010 @ 8:39 am In Workout of the Week (WOW) | 17 Comments

Hit 500 reps total, using the following:

Pullups
Pushups
Handstand Pushups
Planks
Weighted Lunges
Broad Jumps

How-to:

Warmup: 30 second Grok Squat [7], three light sprints at 70%.

Maybe I’m showing my age by making a reference to The Proclaimers in a workout post, but I do so unabashedly. Besides, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” [8] is still one of my top training songs and it always kills at karaoke.

Remember how I mentioned WOWs [9] might occasionally take the form of fitness tests, as opposed to workouts you’d do on a regular basis? That sometimes I’d ask you to perform a grueling, demanding task just to prove to yourself that you could do it, as a mark of progress? This is one of those times.

I’m always trying to come up with new workouts to keep things interesting (for you and for me), and my latest one consists of choosing a number of reps, usually in the hundreds, and then attempting to reach that number by way of various exercises. I might do a combination of pullups [10], pushups [11], planks [12], box jumps, glute ham raises, and/or lunges to hit four hundred reps. If I go for six hundred reps, I’d obviously do more of the easier stuff. 500 seems to be the sweet spot. It’s rough, but if you choose the right reps and exercises, you can usually finish it. It’s also a lot of fun, despite the effort involved, because you’re constantly moving onto a new movement, and you’re never relegated to grinding out single reps on one movement since you can just try the next one and come back later. It’s hard to give up when you have six other choices.

So, using pullups, pushups, handstand pushups [13], planks (where one second equals one rep), weighted lunges, and broad jumps [14], hit 500 repetitions. You can mix them, mash them, and alternate them in any order you prefer; just be sure you do at least 50 reps of each exercise (don’t go easy and just do several minutes of planks – although that’s harder than it sounds) and reach a total of 500. There’s no time limit, so rest in between sets – or even reps, if it gets to that point – as needed. And remember, you have the freedom to customize this workout. If you’d like to add box jumps or inverted rows or some other movement to the rotation have at it.

Make it easier:

  • Do more reps of the exercises that are easiest for you. Some people might have an easier time doing more lunges, rows, and planks, while others might find it’s easier to do more pullups and pushups.
  • Listen to your body and go with the flow of the workout. If another pullup just sounds impossible at the moment, save the rest of ‘em for the end.

Make it harder:

  • Do more reps of the exercises that are hardest for you. If you find handstand pushups difficult, do them anyway.
  • Wear a weight vest the entire time.

Variations:

If you can’t complete a pullup or a handstand pushup, for example, use the PBF Essential Movements Progression and Self-Assessment [15] to determine which movements you can complete. Even if you’re doing knee pushups and chair pullups, that’s totally fine! Do what you can.

What are WOWs?

  • Workouts of the Week (WOWs) are an optional component of Primal Blueprint Fitness [15] that add a fractal and often fun and playful quality to the basic PBF protocol.
  • In most cases WOWs should only be completed by those that have mastered Level 4 of each Lift Heavy Things Essential Movement. Also, it’s recommended that WOWsreplace one or both Lift Heavy Things workouts or the Sprint workout (depending on the WOW) each week instead of being done in addition to the Lift Heavy Things and Sprint workouts.
  • Learn more about WOWs and Primal Blueprint Fitness by getting the free eBook [15]. And access all Workouts of the Week in the WOW Archive [16].

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[7] Grok Squat: http://www.marksdailyapple.com../../how-to-squat-properly/

[8] “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rynxm_GQEsI

[9] WOWs: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/wow/

[10] pullups: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-to-proper-pullup-chinup-technique/

[11] pushups: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-to-proper-pushup-technique/

[12] planks: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-to-proper-plank-technique/

[13] handstand pushups: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-to-proper-overhead-press-technique/

[14] broad jumps: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vfR0FeEse4

[15] PBF Essential Movements Progression and Self-Assessment: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-fitness/

[16] WOW Archive: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-fitness/workout-of-the-week-archive/

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