Road to a First Pull-up (and Then Some)

Base Camp, 11/14/2015
November 11, 2015
Friday, 11/13
November 12, 2015

IMG_6836By Kara M.

[*Updated from previous post]

> Over a year ago…

I was never been able to do pull ups, even when I was in the best shape of my life (swimming and Olympic weightlifting in high school). I had to cheat on the Presidential Fitness test.

Because of an old swimming injury (I tore my scapular muscle), I had been doing ring rows and band-assisted pull ups for about a year just getting the back strength. I think the real difference maker for me was taking Coach Surg’s advice to start doing the work off of dumbbells [practicing by placing a dumbbell under the pull-up bar, and initiating the pull with feet touching the dumbbell instead of trying to pull straight off the floor].

Once I switched up how I was doing the work, it taught me how to engage and pull from my back instead of my arms, which was the key!


> And then, eight months ago… 

Little by little I decreased the size of the dumbbells that I was using for practice, until Coach Kate had me do a couple pull ups off the 5 pound weight and I shocked myself by actually being able to do them.  (Must also give a shout out to Matt G. and Sara C. for constantly annoying me to work on them.)  But I still couldn’t get a pull up or chin up off the ground.

> … came The Day…

Both chin-ups and pulls-ups, I didn’t know the day was going to be The Day. I jumped up on the rig and pulled myself up, as if that was a totally normal thing for me to do.

On the chin ups, I had to ask people if I jumped; for my first pull up, I got to the top and laughed and, still with my chin still above the bar, asked Chris if I was doing a pull up or chin up, because I wasn’t sure which way my hands were.

> And then, yesterday



Incredible.  Just incredible.

Congrats, Kara!  We’re so proud of you!  And to quote our friends from Wade’s Army: “Thank you for using your power for good!”

1 Comment

  1. Tom says:

    Awesome, inspiring work!