Chin Ups as ME exercise.

Ive decided on West Side for skinny bastards finally. After asking and annoying people about routines on here and the Mens Health board for the last month.

Id like to improve my chin ups but dont know if im strong enough to use them as my ME exercise. when doing five sets I can usually only pump out about 4 reps. My 3 rep max for weighted chin ups is 15 lbs. Id love to improve my chin up numbers.

The probelem is that I dont know how to warm up for them because even doing sets of 3-5 body weight will tire me out for my 3-5 rep max. Basically I would have to warm up with like 8 sets of 2 I guess.

Is this enough or am I short changing myself on my ME exercise? Should I stick with a bench ME and use max rep chin ups as an accessory lift?


Also has anybody done chin ups as there ME? Im intersted to see what kind of improvements others have made.

wtf is ME?

Sorry I really should have clarified that.
ME=Max Effort.

Here is the link to WS4SBIII

here a copy of Mike Guadango Me day,one of Defranco best athlete, not exactly ws4sb 3 template but take a look , chins are included in the workout

Monday Max Effort Upper Body

A) Chain Bench (80lbs of chains total) 2RM

B) Dumbbell Press (Palms in)

C) Chinups (full lockout)
3 Sets 22 Reps each (previous week 3 sets of 20)

D) Blackburns
2 Sets 1 Minute

E1) Lateral Raises

E2) Zottmann Curls

F) Light Ab Circuit
2 Sets
20 Sprinters
25 Toe Touches
15 Hip Thrusts

If you’re going to use chin-ups as your ME exercise on the program, then you’ll need to perform your progressive warm-up sets on a lat pulldown machine until you get to bodyweight for a set of 3 reps, then add some weight (5-15lbs based on what you wrote) and get at least three sets at 90% or higher of your max for 3-5 reps).

You could do this:

Lat pulldowns:
Set 1: 50lbs x 5 reps
Set 2: 90lbs x 5 reps
Set 3: 120lbs x 5 reps
Set 4: 150lbs x 3 reps

Bodyweight x 3-5 reps

Work sets:
Set 1: Bodyweight + 5lbs x 5 reps
Set 2: Bodyweight + 10lbs x 4-5 reps
Set 3: Bodyweight + 15lbs x 3 reps

Not sure how much you weigh or if the weights are too much for the lat pulldown, but you can adjust accordingly.

Awesome replies guys thanks.

I was hoping I could use lat pull downs as my warm up.
I weigh 196 and my lat pull down machine goes to 200 so I am fine.

Excited to get started as my chin ups are really weak so improvement should come fast. Id love to get bigger biceps as well without doing too many curls.

I’m not going to do this particular workout for any set period of time. I am just going to stop when I stop seeing gains.

Thanks guys.

I’m a big fan of chin ups for ME upper body. 95 % of the time, weighted chin up variations (mostly pullups) are the bread and butter of my ME upper work. I use high rep dumbbell bench as my supplemental exercise. Great exercises for improving both my upper back thickness and my pressing. And last I checked I had increased my bench press from 5 x 65 kg to 3 x 80 kg without even touching the bench press barbell (could be very much due to my increases in the dumbbell bench but whatever :p…)

And regarding warming up on the lat pulldown machine: Seriously, if you have a rowing machine in your gym there’s really no need to crank out sets on the lat pulldown. This is how I warmed up 2 weeks ago for my ME upper body day.


Rowed 1000 m at a moderate pace

3 x bw
2 x +10 kg
2 x +20 kg
2 x +25 kg
Work set: 3 x +30 kg (about 65 pounds)

But to be honest with you, if you can’t do 8 (preferably 10) unweighted chins with good form, I think you would be better off doing nonweighted chins/pullups.