DIY Pull-Up Bar

This is a long overdue post.  Earlier this month I installed a homemade pull-up bar in my garage.

It is constructed out of 1" black steel pipe and 2"x6" boards.  I initially had my doubts about 12 screws holding up my body weight, but it feels incredibly solid.  I've jerked and yanked at it and it just doesn't budge.

The final price for supplies was somewhere between $150 and $200.  This was a little more than I was hoping to spend but well worth it for the final result.

So far I've done "Murph" and "Tabata Something Else" on it.  Looking forward to many more good workouts to come.

WOD: 20100330

Another scaled CrossFit.com workout today.

7 rounds for time of
3 x 135# front squat
5 x L pull-ups

My L pull-ups started with legs extended but I found my pull-up form was better with knees bent, so I switched to that. I need to keep working on my hamstring flexibility for the straight-legged L-sits.

Time: 12:48


WOD: 20100329

I did a CrossFit.com inspired workout today (where inspired means pretty heavily scaled).

3 rounds for time of:
20 double unders
20 box jumps, 20" box
20 kettlebell swings, 1.5 poods

Time: 15:38


WOD: 20100328

I did "Tabata Something Else" today. Here is a video of someone really fit doing it. (I was doing regular sit-ups instead of the GHD sit-ups seen in the video).

My score: 300.

My previous best was 287 but that was with crunches instead of sit-ups and likely with less range of motion on the pull-ups.


WOD: 20100326

I went for a light workout today, of my own devising.

Warm-up: 3 rounds of
10 sit-ups
10 push-ups
10 pull-ups
10 front squats (45#, 95#, 95#)

Hang squat cleans: 5-4-3-2-1 reps

Weights: 65-75-85-95-105

My cleans are starting to feel more confident. Definitely had lots of room in this workout.


WOD: 20100324

I scaled the CrossFit.com workout from Tuesday.

For time, 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps of
overhand grip pull-ups
24" box jumps

Time: 13:40


WOD: 20100322

I'm still hurting from Murph today, but managed to pull myself through a scaled CrossFit.com workout from a couple of days ago.

For time:
Row 1000m
30# one-arm power snatch, 50 reps
Row 750m
30# one-arm power snatch, 35 reps
Row 500m
30# one-arm power snatch, 20 reps

The scaling was 30# instead of 40#, and doing "power snatches" instead of full "squat snatches".

Time: 19:45


WOD: 20100320


For time:
1 mile run
100 pull-ups
200 push-ups
300 squats
1 mile run

Partition the pull-ups/push-ups/squats any way you want.

This is a terrifying workout for me, but when I saw it come up on CrossFit.com on Wednesday, I knew I had to do it. And what better way to break-in my DIY pull-up that I installed in my garage Thursday night.

I've attempted this workout once before and did about 60% of the pull-ups/push-ups/squats plus the running in about 45 minutes.

Today, I finished the entire workout. I got excrutiating cramps in my ribs/back on the final run but managed to limp through it with a bit of short walking breaks. On the positive side, I complete all of the pull-ups in sets of 5. I did everything in 5-10-15 groups, but the push-ups were taking me 2-3 sets to finish the 15 by the end.

Time: 56:15


WOD: 20100318

After my workout on Monday, when I felt really unmotivated and tired, I decided to take three days off of CrossFit to try to recover. I cheated and worked out today.

After my spinning class this afternoon, I tackled the deadlift workout: 7 single rep deadlifts.

Weights (in #): 205-205-205-205-215-225-235

The last rep was a PR for me by 30#, which felt great. No aches or pains afterwards and my form felt pretty tight. It was a good day to come back.


WOD: 20100315

Weighted Pull-ups:


I was really tired at the gym this morning but apparently I've made sufficient progress since the last time I attempted this that tiredness could not prevent me from a PR by at least 10#.

I remember long before I found CrossFit, I saw someone doing weighted pull-ups at the gym and thought how cool it would be to be able to do just one pull-up with the 45# plate. I made it! Thank you CrossFit.


WOD: 20100313

Today I tackled an unscaled CrossFit.com workout.

As many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of:
Run 400m
40 wallball shots, 20# ball

3 rounds, + the run and 20 wallballs of the fourth round

I remember that when I started with CrossFit, I would get wiped out by the 10# wallballs, so this was a pretty encouraging workout.


WOD: 20100311

Doing a CrossFit.com workout from a couple of days ago.

10 rounds for time:
10 dead lift, 135#
10 push-ups

The prescribed workout was 15 reps but this was plenty hard enough for me. I was feeling really tired and discouraged today and thought about giving up more than once. But I finally pushed through for all 10 sets.

Time: 18:40


WOD: 20100309

3 rounds for time of:
Run 400m
21 kettlebell swings, 1.5 poods (53#)
12 pull-ups

Time: 14:45

It felt great to do an unscaled workout today. Kettlebell swings were Russian style (i.e. to eye-level).


WOD: 20100308

Back to Main Site programming now that I'm back in Waterloo.

For time:
10 back squats, 95#
5 strict pull-ups
5 dips
20 back squats, 95#
5 strict pull-ups
5 dips
30 back squats, 95#
5 strict pull-ups
5 dips
20 back squats, 95#
5 strict pull-ups
5 dips
10 back squats, 95#
5 strict pull-ups
5 dips

Time: 12:27

I managed to complete everything in straight sets today, which felt really good. I can't wait to have my garage gym together though: CLHC is less than satisfying after working out at Defiance Crossfit.


WOD: 20100302

I owe this devilish workout to Ryan from Defiance Crossfit.

For time:
40 burpee wall balls
5 strict pull-ups
30 burpee wall balls
5 strict pull-ups
20 burpee wall balls
5 strict pull-ups
10 burpee wall balls
5 strict pull-ups

20# medicine ball. All of the burpees included a push-up to the ball. Ouch.

I don't remember my time exactly, but I believe it was around 18 minutes.

WOD: 20100304

This is my last workout at Defiance Crossfit, at least for this trip to California. It's been a blast guys! I feel like I've made great progress and I've had a lot of fun doing it.

As many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of:
5 pull-ups
10 push-ups
15 squats

14 rounds + 5 reps

For my very first workout at Defiance Crossfit we did a half Cindy (10 minutes) and I managed 7 rounds. I was really hoping for 15 rounds, but not quite. Just like last time, push-ups were my limiting factor.

Thanks again Haley and Ryan! Can't wait to be back.

WOD: 20100303

My Wednesday evening workout at Defiance Crossfit.

6 rounds for time of:
5 Goblet squat, 1.5 poods
10 Kettlebell swings, 1.5 poods
15 sit-ups
10 pull-ups
6 6' broad jumps

Time: 14:15

This workout felt great: I left with the distinct feeling that I've made good progress these past three weeks.


WOD: 20100301—2

My second workout of the day at Defiance Crossfit.

21-15-9 reps, for time, of:
Overhead squat; 45#, 75#, 75#
Sumo deadlift high-pull; 85#

I think my time was just under 11 minutes, but I don't remember exactly.

This was my first workout with overhead squats and I found them much harder than I had expected. I need to work on my shoulder flexibility.

WOD: 20100301—1

Monday's morning workout from Defiance Crossfit.

3 rounds of "Kelly":
Run 400m
30 box jumps
30 wall ball shots, 20#

Time: 18:42

I was gasping for air by the end of this one. A great workout.

WOD: 20100227

Here is my Saturday workout from Defiance Crossfit.

5 rounds for time of:
5 deadlifts; 115#
5 hang squat cleans; 65# for the first four, 85# for the last round
5 push press; 65#, 65#, 75# 75#, 85#
10 pull-ups
15 box jumps

Time: 23:30

I certainly wasn't rushing through this as it was my first workout with squat cleans, but managed to keep up a moderate pace.