If you come to think of it, pull-ups can be life savers – literally. Let’s imagine apocalypse has hit and the world is coming to an end. You’re hanging off of the Statue of Liberty and it’s the only place which is going to survive. There is no one to help you and all you need to do is to pull yourself up.
Not everyone was gifted with great strength in their arms when they were born. But in a situation like this, you would have wanted to be born that way. While we can do nothing about your birth, we can very well work on your strength now.
Even if you don’t see yourself hanging off a building, pull-ups are an incredible exercise to build upper body strength. Only a few other exercises come close to the pull-ups when it comes to developing muscle mass, definition, and strength in your back.
You don’t need to worry if you’re one of the weaklings and can’t complete a single pull-up. This pull-up program is designed to get your pull-up game to the next level. This is a great exercise since you don’t need a gym to do it. You can do it anywhere you find a place to hang.
This exercise has been a benchmark of strength for a long time. There are chances you might have challenged someone to a pull-up competition at some point in your life. We can’t blame you. This exercise is a great way to prove your badassery.
Table of Contents
Build A Solid Back From Scratch With This 8-Week Pull-Up Program
We have divided this program into four parts/phases. Each part consists of two weeks and you’ll focus on getting better at the exercises mentioned in the weekly workout so you can move onto the next level.
Week 1 and Week 2
This is the beginning of the program. If you’re a newbie and can’t do a single pull-up, make use of an assisted pull-up machine or resistance bands if you have access to them in your gym. If you can already do chin-ups, congratulations! Use this time to condition for what is yet to come.
Do 20 reps of this exercise. Take as many sets you need to complete it. This is the time you will focus on improving your technique and setting up a mind-muscle connection. Continue doing your normal back workouts with this pull-up program.
Do this pull-up routine twice a week. This will create the foundation for what is to come in the upcoming weeks. Pull-ups are an effective exercise to warm up before any of your upper body workouts. You shouldn’t have a problem fitting them in with any of your workouts.
Week 3 and Week 4
Welcome to the second part of this program. If you’re a newbie, we hope you are able to do unassisted pull-ups by now. In this stage, you’ll be doing 30 reps of this exercise. Just like in the first stage, take as many sets as you need to complete the given number of repetitions.
Follow this pull-up workout twice for both the weeks. You can start to experiment with different variations of this exercise in this phase. Use a supinated grip to focus on the biceps. This will help you in getting a thicker back.
Do the pull-ups with your palms facing each other to focus on your lats. The wider you hold the bar, the more tension you will have on your lats. A closer grip will work your biceps more than your back.
Week 5 and Week 6
In this phase, we will increase the number of reps to 40. Again, there are no fixed number of sets you need to get these reps in. Instead of twice a day, you’ll be doing this workout thrice a week now. This will come as a shock to the muscles in your back.
Keep doing your normal back workouts with this pull-up program. You might see an increase in strength in other exercises. This will be because of all the controlled body weight pull-ups you’ve been doing. You’ll also experience a better mind-muscle connection with your back.
Keep on experimenting with your grips. Try a different grip in every workout. If done right, back workouts can be one of the most grueling workouts. Make sure you maintain the intensity throughout your pull-up and normal workout.
Week 7 and Week 8
This is when we take things to the next level. You’ll be doing 50 repetitions in this phase. This might sound like a lot but with the gradual conditioning you’ve been through, you’ll be able to get through these 50 reps like a breeze. You would want to pat yourself on the back after this workout.
By this phase, you should have built enough strength to be able to move additional weights than your own body weight. You can experiment by adding a quarter plate to your own body weight. If you’re lifting additional weights for the first time, do it when you’ve only 15 reps left.
Doing this will help you maintain a high intensity during your workout. It’s okay if you can’t complete the 15 reps with the added weight. Drop them and do your reps until you complete the 50 reps. As you increase the intensity of your pull-up workouts make sure you increase the intensity in your normal back workouts too. Increase the weights and the number of reps you do during those workouts as well.