Tag Archives: pyramid

Khufu Point: Martial Arts Training Involution #183

The pyramids of Giza in Egypt

It is Mettlecraft Month at Cabal Fang!  Last year we all faced “Self-Destruct Sequence.”  It was amazing — read about it here.  This year we’re going after the cord and rule program goal of 100 Bodybuilders in under 20 minutes which we’ll take a run at on Tues., 11/26 (the last meeting of Nov.).  Those who’ve already succeeded are aiming for new PRs.  

The way to work your way up 100 Bodybuilders is to use what I call MBF — “martial base fitness” (more details will be in my forthcoming book “Martial Grit” but in the meantime read last week’s T.I.).  One of the secrets of MBF is frequent, low-intensity sets.  

Pyramids are great low-to-medium impact training routines because they have a quasi-warm-up and quasi-cool-down built right in.  And there’s a psychological component too — almost like climbing a real hill or flight of stairs.

Why “Khufu Point?”  Because the Great Pyramid of Giza is also known as the Pyramid of Khufu and it has a point at the top — as well some really cool symbolism — and there’s also a “point” to this involution…

Khufu Point: Martial Arts Training Involution #183

  • Warm-up thoroughly.  Jog, jump rope, lightly shadowbox, etc. for a total of at least 8 minutes.
  • Run to the pyramid.  Complete a 1 kilometer run as fast as you can.  My PR is 4:40.
  • Bodybuilder pyramid. Complete a full pyramid  of Bodybuilders, Jackknifes, and  Steam Engines– that’s 1 of each, 2 each, 3 each, up to your peak and then back down.  Beginners peak at 5, intermediate 6, advanced 7 or more.  Take as few 12-count breaks as you need to finish.
  • Combo Pyramids.  Bounce on your toes in your fighting stance.  Shoot forward and throw 1 punch, then leap back.  Bounce for a few beats, then leap in and throw a 1-2 combo, and leap back.  Bounce for a few beats, then leap in and throw a 1-2-3. Continue up to 5 then back down to 1.  Take a short break, maybe 30 seconds, switch stance to other foot forward and repeat.  Beginners complete 2 sets each side, intermediates 4 sets/side, advanced folks 6 sets/side.  If you have a heavy bag, use it — otherwise punch the air, just make sure you imagine an actual opponent in your mind’s eye while you work!
  • Cool down for 3 minutes.  Walk around your training space and get your heart under 100 bpm.
  • Pyramid reflection.  Set a timer for 10:00 and assume your meditative posture of choice.  Regulate your breathing.  Spend ten minutes reviewing your training recently.  Evaluate emotionally and visually.  Visualize your training in your mind’s eye, thinking in images instead of words or numbers.  Have you been forging your mettle?  Are you “climbing the pyramid” in your training?  Are you ready for the 100 Bodybuilder challenge?

If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books.  Why not check one out?

Exploring Pyramids (and the #WOOTW)

Real pyramids vary by culture, but they are generally known to contain secret chambers and the resting places of the dead. But mainly they are repositories of the unknown. “What’s in there?  Why was it built, and by whom?  How did they make it?” we all ask.

What lies within the pyramid?  The unknown.  

And what happens when the hero confronts the unknown?  He learns something about himself.

Look, you’re unlikely to ever have the opportunity to explore an actual pyramid. Fortunately for you, I have an alternative, and it comes complete with a valuable life lesson packed inside.

What you do is far less important than how you do it.

If you approach the things you do with full attention and execute them to best of your ability, you get better, smarter, faster, stronger and so on.  And then you make better decisions about what you should be doing.  Which means if you do things right, what you do takes care of itself.

Trust me when I say that if you do this workout as designed below — if you climb to the top of this pyramid to the best of your ability — you will see inside the pyramid and inside yourself.

 Cabal Fang Workout of the Week #47

Full Pyramid of the following 5 exercises.  That’s 1 rep of each exercise, 2 of each, 3, 4, etc. to the peak, then back down to 1 of each.  Take as few 12-count breaks as you need in order to finish.

  • Push-up, Full Stop (hands off floor for split second at bottom of each rep)
  • Neck Crunch (front on way up the pyramid and back on way down, or left on the way up and right on the way down)
  • Bodybuilders
  • Bicycles
  • Squats

“How do I find my peak?”  Good question.  How many strict Push-ups or Squats can you do?  Index on the chart below to find your peak.  And this is the central, ‘secret chamber’ of this whole pyramid thing.

If you can do 15 Push-ups and/or 30 Squats in one shot without resting, your pyramid peak = 7.  So, even though you’ll never do more than 7 at one go, you’ll do 49 of each exercise total.  But a Bodybuilder contains a Squat and a Push-up.  Which means that this pyramid tricks you into doing way more reps than it seems like you’re doing.  It pushes you beyond your ordinary limits.

It’s not a contest with anyone other than yourself.  Just finish the darn thing without taking any breaks longer than a 12-count — take as few 12-count breaks as you need.

Max strict Push-ups no rest Max strict air Squats no rest Pyramid Peak
5 – 10 10 – 24 5 (25 reps each exercise – about 10 mins)
11 – 25 25 – 49 7 (49 reps each exercise – about 20 mins)
26 – 49 50 – 99 10 (100 reps each exercise – about 40 mins)
50+ 100 + 12 (144 reps each exercise – about 1 hour)

Use your common sense.  If you don’t exercise regularly and/or you haven’t seen a doctor lately, I strongly recommend that you consult with your physician before trying this workout and/or beginning any exercise program.  Proceed at your own risk.  All exercises and/or exercise programs entail the possibility of physical injury.




PTDICE Pyramid: Full Pyramid to 8 of Wide Push-ups, Leg Lifts, Zombie Squats.

Mini Mud Run


Nothing like the concoction that is sweat, rain and mud! Try this:

Full pyramid to 9 of Squats (x2), Pushups, Sprints (10 meters out/back). That’s 162 Squats, 81 pushups, 81 Sprints. Get it done in under 20 Minutes (my time 18:58)

20 min. Half-Pyramid Workout

Do one Prisoner Squat, one Wall Touch each hand, one Jack-knife, and one Steam Engine.  Then, 2 of each, then 3 of each, then 4, etc. up to 13.  That’s 91 Prisoner Squats, 182 Wall Touches, 91 Jackknifes, 91 Steam Engines in 20 minutes.

Holiday Workout


7 am was the the time to work off some of yesterday’s excess with a quick Pull-up & Squat pyramid before shower and breakfast: 1 Pull-up & 5 Squats; 2 Pull-ups and 10 Squats, 3/15, etc. to 8/40. Then 7/35, 6/30, down to 1/5. TOTAL: 64 Pull-ups & 320 Squats, 20 mins.

Now for a day at the beach!