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SimpleFit: Excellent Primal Workout

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  • SimpleFit: Excellent Primal Workout

    In July of 2007, I looked like this:

    Age: 37, Weight: 220 lbs, Height 5'11"

    I had watched (and sometimes made an effort to reverse) my decline from my peak physical condition, achieved in my last year of university, back in 1997. I was looking for a way out.

    I looked at CrossFit and was inspired (and terrified), but I didn't have the space for weights in my home and didn't know about the many bodyweight CrossFit workouts, so I didn't jump in there.

    I found MDA, and was impressed by the idea of eating and moving like our ancestors...then I found SimpleFit (SF).

    SimpleFit is an entirely bodyweight-based workout regimen.

    I began the program on March 24, 2008, a little over eight months after taking the above photo.

    SF Uses 3 Basic Exercises
    1. Pull-ups
      1. If you can't do a pull-up, substitute 3 body rows (youtube) for 1 pull-up.
      2. A good comparison of perfect dead-hang pull-ups and kipping pull-ups (.wmv).
        A perfect pull-up has no motion in the lower body. The chest touches the bar, the head is held back, the eyes are directed straight up. It's good to know what proper pull-up form looks like, but you'll need to do kipping pull-ups in SimpleFit.
    2. Push-ups
      1. How to build up to real push-up (.mov)
      2. Tune your push-up form (.mov)
    3. Squats
      1. "Air-Squats" (.mov) ie. no weights

    SF Works on a 3-Day Rotation
    1. Day 1 (endurance):
      As many rounds of the prescribed exercises as possible in 20 minutes.

      At Level 1 that would be as many sets of:
      • 1 pull-up
      • 2 push-ups
      • 3 squats you can do in the allotted time.

    2. Day 2 (strength):
      5 rounds, for time

      At Level 1 that would be 5 rounds of:
      • 2 pull-ups
      • 6 push-ups
      • 10 squats

      ...with approximately 3 minutes rest between rounds. Do not count your rest time in your total time.

    3. Day 3 (judgement)
      1 round, for time

      At Level 1 that would be 1 round of:
      • 10 pull-ups
      • 21 push-ups
      • 21 squats

      ...done in that order. Take as many rest breaks as you need, but be advised, rest time is counted on D3.

      When you can manage the prescribed exercises in less than 5 minutes, you move up to the next level.

    There is a very good and supportive community on the site.

    Today, I look like this:

    Age: 40, Weight: 185 lbs
    Still a ways to go, but in much better shape.

    p.s. I am affiliated with the site in as much as I became a moderator on the forum there just yesterday.
    Last edited by cheapo; 07-21-2010, 12:47 PM.

  • #2
    duuuude. that's amazing! ironically, that is pretty much my workout as well. although, i hadn't thought about switching up how they're done, so i'm gonna gank that concept love it!

    HANDS OFF MY BACON :: my primal journal


    • #3
      LOVE the girl pull ups! LOL


      • #4
        Awesome work! But how is that different than crossfit?
        My journal where I attempt to overcome Chrohns and make good food as well


        • #5
          Thank you, THANK you for posting this. I have been dithering about trying to figure out my gym routine, waiting for Mark's program to come out, or ordering P90X- particularly with space constraints, I think I am going to have to give this a try.
          With Mark's help, I've conquered depression, acne, rosacea, scale obsession, migraines, and lethargy. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

          My Journal:


          • #6
            Originally posted by strom View Post
            Awesome work! But how is that different than crossfit?
            The key difference is that no weights or gym are required, just a pull-up bar.
            If you don't have time or the money to get to a gym, that's a key consideration.
            There's less variety that CrossFit, but the three exercises will get you fit.
            And while the exercises don't change, the challenge to "level up" on Day 3 is a huge motivator.


            • #7
              Thanks for posting! Have been thinking of P90X as well but the cost is prohibitive.

              Printing out now. Thanks to you and DCKMB, I should be busy.

              And wonderful changes!
              Even if you fall flat on your face, at least you're moving forward!


              • #8
                Impressive changes! It reminds you that persistence is a key factor ... don't worry about short term improvements or lack of visible changes, set yourself a realistic time frame (one year is realistic for such a dramatic change) and do a before/after comparison then. :-)
                MikeEnRegalia's Blog - Nutrition, Dieting, Exercise and other stuff ;-)


                • #9
                  I'll have to check it out! At first glance, it looks exactly like what I've been looking for. I keep looking at crossfit...but, honestly, it's all a little confusing still and it kinda intimidates me!
                  Heather and the hounds - Make a Fast Friend, Adopt a Greyhound!


                  • #10
                    Cheapo, I admire your dedication. That's quite a change. Very good of you to post this info to help others.

                    I'm in awe of many folks here on the MDA forum. Due to back injuries from a car accident, I have physical limitations, but I do what I can (wisely now, after 10 years of learning to cope) & primal living has really helped with pain reduction, energy, and mood. (I really want to try a sledgehammer workout, but I know that would be a bad idea given my soft tissue injuries.)

                    I hope all of you apples are in awe of your health and what your body can do. Don't take it for granted! It's a wondrous & beautiful thing.


                    • #11
                      No one one can argue with you about your positive results, that's for sure!



                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MikeEnRegalia View Post
                        Impressive changes! It reminds you that persistence is a key factor ... don't worry about short term improvements or lack of visible changes, set yourself a realistic time frame (one year is realistic for such a dramatic change) and do a before/after comparison then. :-)
                        This is absolutely true.

                        Firstly, I didn't go primal all at once and I'm still making little changes and (I hope) improvements.

                        Secondly, I haven't always been consistent. This past winter was a real slog with many multi-week bouts of missed workouts (and the guilt and self-abuse that goes along with that).

                        Both of these factors would result in short term failure, but over the long term, their effects are diminished.

                        Mark has a post or two that mention that calories and nutrition shouldn't be evaluated daily. Rather, weekly and monthly nutrition trends are what really count. This idea removes a great deal of pressure from the work of improving one's diet.
                        Last edited by cheapo; 04-24-2010, 07:35 AM.


                        • #13
                          Mark's book also says to not be rigid in regiment or results obsessed. It's about the journey and the long haul.

                          Cheapo, you set a very good example. Thanks for sharing.


                          • #14
                            Cheapo: How do you get abs like that? I do my own version of Crossfit Cindy I call Sindy: 5 Pullups, 10 Pushups, 15 Squats and 10 Situps for 20 Minutes. Can do 11 rounds of it. Thanks.


                            • #15
                              My only workouts are SimpleFit and 2 hockey games per week. They work the abs (and everything else). Eating well reveals them.
                              Last edited by cheapo; 02-20-2012, 10:01 AM. Reason: Spelling