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Andy Bolton Deadlift Challenge Night of the Living Dead

My next meet. Come watch me make history as I deadlift 905lbs in Elizabethton, TN on October 22nd.

2011 USPA Treasure Coast Classic

This was Lindsey's first meet in almost a year. About 3 weeks out from the meet she was weighing 132 and we started cutting her to 114. Reduced her carbs and had her eat smaller meals every 2 hours consisting of water and protein shake or lean protein and vegetables. After 2 weeks she had lost..... 

no weight, none, at all.
This was baffling to everyone because she had been eating like a strongman before her diet.
But after the first 2 weeks, she dropped a pound a day. Monday prior to the meet she started sodium loading and flushed on Wednesday, she was still 5 over. Friday we tried to sweat her out on the way to the meet in the car. She was wearing a trash bag, 3 layers of sweats, a heavy duty sleeping bag, and we had the heat on high for most of the trip. And she weighed in at 118. It had been a tough cut and we knew we couldn't take it all the way down to 114, so we worked hard to put her weight back on and get her ready to compete as a 123.

Despite being all nerves, the squats went great, all of them were meet PR's and the first time she'd ever walked out squats in a meet. 203 opener flew up easily, 225 barely slowed down, 237 was a grinder at first but Lindsey finished the lift so strong it pushed her forward and she stepped prior to the rack command. It was a heart breaker, but we cut our losses and focused on the bench. 

Easy 137 opener, a quick jump to 155, and 165 went slow, but Lindsey stuck with it and belted it out. 25lb meet PR on bench. This bench was great, but very different than what Lindsey was used to; the bench was lower, and the pad was thinner and "sticky". Once you got into position there was no sliding, but she had to lower her arch a little to keep her butt firmly planted on it.

Deadlift opened at 230, and moved up to 286, a tough 26lb meet PR, and all-time best. Lindsey's shins might as well have been lava, the bar didn't even touch her til she got above her knees. Hahaha, she'll have to work on that one! If you're not bleeding you're not doing it right. 296 was attempted but there was no gas left in the tank and the bar floated disrespectfully before resigning to the floor.
It was great to see all our friends from Ironworks Gym out there(who won best team). Cori, Jim, and Shari all lifted great and we can't wait to do it again.

The meet ran very efficiently, loaders and spotters were on point and the meet was over in about 4-5 hours. Good tight judging.

Rx Power Hour Interview and Olympia Entry

Ryan Bracewell interviewed Vince on the Rx Power Hour. Click to listen

Vince has decided to enter the 2011 MHP Olympia Strongman Show. It is one of the largest expo's in the US. It's home to over 30,000 fans, 650 companies and some of the strongest men in the country competing in one of the biggest American Strongman Corporation shows of the year!

The Events of the Olympia
Last Man Standing Max Log 

Highest log press wins
700lb Conan's Wheel
Contestants pick up the apparatus and walk around in a circle. Greatest distance wins
Giant Farmer's Walk Medley
310 Farmers; 330 Tanks (75' each; 75 second time limit). Lowest time or greatest distance wins.
Stone Over Bar for Reps
380 Stone (54" Platform; 75 second time limit). Most reps over the bar wins.
Progressive Yoke
 (1st Round 850, 2nd Round 950, 3rd Round 1050 (50' each; 75 second time limit). Fastest time or greatest distance wins
Press Medley
Specific Order: 200 DB; 250 Block; 275 Keg; 330 Axle, 340 Log (75 second time limit). Most implements moved in the fastest time wins
 Car DL for reps
Toyota Camry (60 second time limit). Highest number of reps wins
Suicide Medley
Carry: Sandbag (200lbs; 75'), Keg (275lbs; 50'), Block (250lbs; 25 feet)
Sled Pull: 75' (loaded with SB, Keg, Block)
75 second time limit. Fastest time or greatest distance wins.

America's Strongest Man 2011, media, results and write up

A huge thanks to RxMuscle.com for taking video of some of the events. To see the winners of each event and an interview with them and a wrap up with ASC President Dione Wessels and VP Mike Johnston go HERE.
This show was well organized and the fans had constant updates on the events and placing thanks to Texas State Chair Ashley Wirt (which can be seen on the NAS website).

I felt good going into the show. I felt very strong and felt I’d improved my conditioning as well.
I do not dwell on the events too much. Of course I prepare and train for them, but if I am strong enough the events in a show shouldn't matter. I never let the events dictate which shows I do, I just go out and do my best.
I knew going into the show that the max axle was going to be tough, but I felt very confident about the rest of the events.

Leading up to the show, my heavy training and conditioning went smoothly, and de-load went well too. I am pretty meticulous in my pre-contest preparation and I'm always striving to improve my contest preparation from one contest to the next.

Day 1 Event 1: Max Axle
Disaster- went out and opened with 363 confident I could get it, missed the 1st clean, re-cleaned it, and smashed the press easily. I felt like I could have pressed 400 or close to it.. I tried to go up what I thought was a conservative jump to 383, but the axle kept slipping down my shirt and I couldn't clean it. Spent my last 2 attempts attempting to clean it. I was disappointed in this event.
Scott Weech smashes an easy 423 on his 2nd attempt for a new World Record on the IronMind Axle

Day 1 Event 2: 950 Yoke- 1050 Sled Medley
Brutal,brutal medley,  I was maybe a foot or two behind Carl Foemmel on the yoke, then on the sled I was able to pull ahead by a few feet! However at the very end, I just got really tired and he managed to cross the line about 2 seconds ahead of me (he had a really strong finish on that). It was definitely a very close and intense race.

Travis demolished this medley for an easy win in about 30 seconds.

Day 1 Event 3: Hussafell Stone
After the yoke/sled medley I was puking my guts out from exhaustion for about 15 minutes. I was still puking in the trash can when I heard my name get called for the 400 pound Hussafell stone carry for max distance. I had to just get my mind right really fast, and I was actually able to carry the stone for 168 ft which was about a 50ft pr. Good for 3rd place in the event.

Mike Burke put on a clinic with the Hussafell stone and traveled ~215ft. Crazy!

Day 1 Event 4: Chevy Colorado Truck Wheelbarrow
Originally this was supposed to be with no straps but was changed last minute to allow straps. I was very confident going into this event, in training I have done up to a 450/hand farmers without straps. However when I actually picked up the truck and tried to "wheelbarrow" with it, I could not have been more surprised. Immediately it slid out of my hands with straps and I had to re-pick several times. Getting a pattern of movement going with your feet was nearly impossible, it made you move very erratically. I only made it about 21 ft which was a mid-pack finish. I was not pleased with this, but plenty of other guys struggled on this event as well.

Travis again for an easy win, ran the course in under 30 seconds.

After Day1-Going into Day 2
I was not at all satisfied with my day one results, I was sitting in 9th place overall. When the goal I had set for myself going into this contest was a top five finish. Needless to say I was definitely fired up to come out and improve my placing on day two.

Day 2 Event 1: Keg Toss
8 kegs increasing in weight up to 55lbs, thrown over a 16ft bar, fastest time wins. I was confident going into this event that I could do well. I had trained this event to the best of my ability with the resources I had (thank you Andrew and Phillip Clayton). And throwing for height has always been a strength of mine. I went out,  went nuts and threw the kegs as fast as I could. I wrapped up the then fastest time, but was narrowly squeezed into 3rd by Josh Thigpen and Travis Ortmayer for the win.

Day 2 Event 2:Push/Pull Medley- I knew coming into it this was going to be a good event for me. I had practiced it numerous times in training with out the use of straps. I knew not wasting time to strap-in on the axle lifts would save time and improve my placing on this event. I just went straight down the line, 340 log one motion, 715 deadlift easy, 330 axle straight clean and press, 675 axle deadlift no problem, 200lb circus dumbbell.  I was amped up and feeling good after winning this event, not to mention the crowd loved the "machinegun" (Who would have thought that the same kind of people that like strongman also think its awesome to mimic shooting into a crowd with a machinegun?) Aren't strongman fans the best?

Car deadlift and hold: brutal, brutal event. Basically strap into the car, deadlift it up, and hold for max time. Basically a pain tolerance type event. Since I had won the previous event, I was up last on the car deadlift and hold against Travis Ortmayer. the overall leader. I expected Travis to hold longer than anyone previously had, so I told my self that I had to hold it longer than him.  I ‘m not sure what his time was, but he dropped before the current leading time. However I was able to continue to hold for 1:14 for the event win. This was definitely the toughest event of the show for me.  Grip training paid off here again!

Day 2 Event 4: Atlas Stones
  I was in 3rd place, with a 4 point lead ahead of 4th (Michael Burke) going into the stones.  I thought about being conservative and just loading all 5 stones and securing my spot in 3rd place, but I was about 7 points behind Dave Ostlund in 2nd place and a World's Strongest Man invite so if Dave were to make a mistake on stones and place poorly and I were to win I would have had a shot at 2nd place and a WSM invite. I started off on the stones as fast as  I could , immediately losing my tacky on the 1st stone( I think I put it on too early, so it might have been too soft) I was able to get the 1st 3 stones very quickly. The 4th stone slipped at first but I was still able to load it with out tacky. The final stone proved to be too much and I had no tacky reserve on my hands so I was only able to get it as far as my lap. Not a good performance here, I will definitely be working hard to fix this.

Dave Ostlund demolished the stones, his experience and skill was obvious on this event, as well as brute strength.

So I ended up finishing 4th overall. 1pt behind Michael Burke in 3rd.

I pretty much had PR's in every event except stones and axle, but even axle was a competition PR. I need to make sure I have a reserve of tacky for my stones.

I'd really like to thank ASC for how well they took care of all the athletes. They put on an outstanding and very professional show.

I want to thank GI Nutrition for their sponsorship and support. GI Nutrition products have been a critical part of my training and preparation for America's Strongest Man. They are NCAA approved no-nonsense, effective products free from fillers and unproven ingredients. GI Nutrition Ideal Whey is delicious and a top quality protein. Focus Food Bars are a great pre-work out snack, they really get you going, ready to train or compete. Focus Food Bars go great with Ideal Pump before a work out and Ideal Recovery is great between events and after a hard day of training or competing. There is no better combination of proven, effective products than the ingredients in these supplements.

Back to back blog updates

Yeah, you're really excited. Vince and I are packing for ASM, leaving tomorrow morning. I'll be taking as much video as possible while there, and post it up when we get back. I'll try to get it up as a podcast, but it will be up here regardless.

Vince's ASM Training Compilation

Vince's final preparation for America's Strongest Man, in Hot Springs, Arkansas August 5th&6th. Fueled by Grecian Ideal Nutrition, their no-nonsense, effective products with no fillers or bs contributed to his successful training and recovery for ASM. Vince proudly uses Silverback Strength Equipment. A huge thanks to everyone at Team Jax, Andrew Clayton, and Charles Bailey at Sportsplex.

Vince is dedicating this competition to his grandfather, Vincent W. Urbank, a World War II Navy Veteran and Philadelphia fireman, who passed away last year. Vince's grandfather was a tremendous positive influence in his life and would have been 90 this August 2nd.

Another Day

Beard Head
a must have for anyone who does not a have a beard and needs a 100lb boost on their deadlift.

Vince Pulls 881

Vince plans to compete in NOTLD (Night of the Living Dead, Andy Bolton Deadlift Challenge) October 22nd, after America's Strongest Man, August 5th.

Offline for a little bit.

We are currently getting ready for Vince's Strongman Show: "Southern Strongman Challenge", a  Platinum plus level show (which means if Vince wins he will get his Pro Card). So we are a little distracted by that right now. That and my current injury will keep us from posting much until after his show on the 26th.

Big Deadlift---making it happen. OBB meet write up..

Im sitting down in a cheap hotel conference room chair, I cant hear anything because I have headphones blaring some loud classic rock (Van Halen, Scorpions, Bon Jovi, etc). Im not really listening to the music, more like using it to drown everybody out because I dont feel like hearing any chit chat, Im getting in the zone. The bottom half of my deadlift suit is digging into me and my stubbed toe hurts. I want to go now, I wanted to make this deadlift hours ago, yesterday, I just want to get it over with. Lindsey tells me I am three-out, I take the headphones off stand up and have Brian Carroll and Kieth Price help me pull my suit straps up. I chalk my hands, tighten my belt and then I hear "Bar's Loaded, 840 pounds!". I come storming out, square up to the bar, reach down and lock in my hook grip, then drop my hips a little and went for it. Pushed my feet down and tried to get as much speed coming up as I could. I felt it blow off the floor easy and I knew right then I had it, it slowed a bit as it neared my sticking point just below my knees. I shook a bit and lost a bit of momentum, but now I was in my lockout (strongest part of my deadlift) so I just held on and kept pulling, lockout was easy and got the down signal. At this point I proceeded to go apeshit and run around and yell a little bit, but give me a break, I was pretty excited.

840 pound deadlift on the books and much more to come, I feel like I'm just starting to figure like one or two little things about training...just enough to be dangerous. This was the completion of a short term goal and an indicator of a successful training cycle. Here is what my deadlift training looked like leading up to this meet.

Been following a 3-day a week split for a while now and I feel I am able to make great strength gains by allowing myself 4 rest days a week. Split before this meet was; Monday: press/upper body, Wednesday: deadlift/lower body, Friday night or Saturday morning: Squat/lower body.

On deadlift day I pick one primary deadlift movement (deficit pull, rack or block pull, band pull, reverse band pull). I warmup and work my way up to max effort for 1-2 reps with that deadlift movement, then go down and do a drop set of max reps at 60-80% but not to failure. Next I pick another lower body exercise (Heavy sled drag, front squat, leg press, high rep squat) and warmup and do a heavy 5x5 or sometimes 5x10. After this I do support work, which changes every 3-5 weeks but an example would be.

Supported or bent over row. warmup then 5x8-15

wide and narrow lat pulldown 4x10-20 each

dumbell row 4x10

dumbell curl 3x10-20 with 20lb dumbells, just to stretch and cool down my biceps from all the heavy rowing.

The primary deadlift is done 2-3 weeks on and 1 weeks off. Everything else is done every week.

I have not focused on my deadlift much over the past year or so because I felt that while my deadlift was strong I had many other weaknesses that I needed to prioritize working hard on first. Now that my press is coming up and my squat is coming along, I will be getting on the road to hitting some huge deadlifts in the next few years. The goal is to join the 900lb club (in a meet, no straps or hitch) and then beyond! Thanks again to everybody that has helped me and been supportive along the way!

Lindsey Maxes Out

So after a few weeks of hard training, good diet, and a few supplements (HMB {thank you MTI}, protein and creatine). It's time to see where I'm at and where my weaknesses are.
My best gym lifts (on video) have been
215 squat
148 bench
260 deadlift

Monday I maxed on squat and hit 235.

Wednesday I benched and hit 155.

Friday I deadlifted and did kinda shitty because I was wore out from maxing out and wasting so much energy on 2 missed 265 attempts. First time I set-up and starting pulling over the bar. Second attempt I broke ground but had no energy left (as there are no videos of these attempts, we will accept it in the "didn't happen category). I'm max out again in 6-8 weeks.

I need to focus a lot on my technique. I have a horrible, horrible tendency to muscle up weight. I need to use more glutes and legs in my squat, keep my torso more up right, and may need to say farewell to my oly shoes.

My bench press, I need to tuck my elbows in evenly, hit low, and push the bar down and away. Especially with that high arch; I can't have the bar coming up on me.

My deadlift, I need to work on my set up. My weights were coming up off the floor a lot faster than they used to. So I will keep with the bands and chains, work in rack pulls, do some part-part-whole shit.

Other than my DL epic fail, things are going pretty well, and I seem to be on track to get a 650 raw total at 105 this year and maybe a 700 total down the line. I hope I can keep this up.

A huge thanks to:
Team Jax
My Vince
As well as:
Advanced Muscle Science
Optimum Nutrition
for all the supplements, they were all awesome and a huge help. I hope to put up a big total soon and make you all proud.
(Then maybe I'll get all cute and do a figure show, if I really like you. haha)

Finally pulling my weight around

Reverse Band Deadlift (about 60/65 off the floor and 0 at the top)
185x5 (3 sets, each different width:conventional, narrow sumo, wide sumo)
225x5 (3 sets etc)
275x3 (3 sets etc)
315x1 (only got them sumo and wide sumo)
325x1 (only got it narrow sumo)

I did pull most of my warm ups using straps, but shredded them for the 315's and 325 pull.

Split Squats

95x10 (snatch grip)

Blob Deadlift
4x10 with 70lb kb

Bicep Curls
2x10 with bar

Abs on decline with 10lb weight

I am really happy with the gains that I have made so far, and using only a few supplements (HMB, Creatine, Caffeine, and PROTEIN [protein is in all caps because it's that important] ). I hope they continue! I'll be ready to deload soon.
They guys were super helpful today, especially Joe who helped me set up everything for my Deadlifting while all the guys were on the mono doing squats. We had a visitor today, a guy I had my second meet ever (SPF, Brute Strength Gym 2/20/2010) with, he was prepping for a meet and happened to be in the area so he squatted with the boys. For a skinny guy it was some pretty decent weight. 

Got home and ate 2 whole chicken breasts, and 2 sweet potatoes, and some bacon, and a shake (I'm eating more chicken now). It was awesome.

Vince is taking some time off for his meet on the 19th. We are going to get a massage together for V-day, and may try to make a heart-shaped husafell stone (if we can find enough lead).

The Inner Bench

Reverse band benching.
215 fail

Probably spent a little too much time warming up there. haha. I didn't expect to be able to go up that high, I figured 185 and I'd be out, but it just kept surprising me. Next time I'll know what to expect

Swiss Bar
85lbsx10 (once I got a handle on the balance this thing was FUN)

Skull crushers with Swiss bar (I like these sooo much better than the straight bar)

Band Rows


Push ups
3x10 with 25lbs
1x15 with 25lbs
(no, I never get tired of push ups. PFTs, you'll be good at them. You'll be PTing so fast people will think you're real drill instructors, you'll compete against real drill instructors, you'll beat real drill instructors and get sent back to MCRD)But seriously, it is my favorite bench assistance work. Working back up to 45lbs for 10 reps.


My arms were shaking afterward. First time in a while that my triceps really felt like they were getting a good thrashing. My arch was feeling pretty good, but I need to focus on pushing my heels to the floor, grip the bar harder, concentrate on extending my elbows and pulling the bar apart. I'm still trying to push with just my chest, and it's kind of fucking me over. I've got a 155 bench in me waiting to get out. And that bench wants out NOW!

Got home and chugged a protein shake with a scoop of protein, 8oz of milk, and 2 raw whole eggs. I'll do some ab work and a few more push ups before I pass out hardcore.

Front Squat-age

Not trying to make excuses, but absolute worst cramps I've ever had during a work out. I was literally in the fetal position in tears between sets. Haha, still not as bad as deadlifting til I puke.

Front Squat
150x1 (I felt like my form was way off, I should have been able to triple this. Wish I got a video)

Seated good-mornings

Goblet Squats

I really should have done 20, but I pussed out.DL actually felt like the best thing I did all day.

I really should have added in some Bulgarian split squats and blob dl's as well. But I'll settle for some lunges and ab work at home.

The new kids are doing a great job. Yuri, Joe, Jordan and Paul were pressing and dl'ing together. Paul is new and he's catching on very quickly. He learned alternate grip and hook grip today and used them on his dl and ended up getting 355x5. Jordan is going to be pretty epic, he's only 19 and hitting 500x5. I'm really looking forward to seeing them in a meet soon.

Trying to get my diet on point. Drinking more raw eggs, eating more protein and less carbs.

Benching like a beast

Ate 5 raw eggs:

Won a fatbar this week from silver back strength equipment, and we got it in yesterday, so today I got to play with it.
Felt very, very sluggish today (lots of family stuff going on and it's hard to get my head in the game).
Things were a little hectic since almost everyone was benching today. We got to play musical bench.

Bench with bands (+70@top) (played around with the grip width)

Push ups with 25lbs
three different widths: diamond, military, wide
9 sets of 5

Iso-lateral DB Bench (soooo slow on these)

Fatbar Bench

Chest Fly

Pull ups
3×5 (no dead hangs)

Band Rows

Push Downs

I got a whole lot of volume done
Love the fatbar!

Press day and thoughts on deloading for upcoming meet.

I am now 18 days out from Orlando Barbell meet, where I will be bench pressing and deadlifting. I planned on going heavy tonight but not to max effort, I am at the back end of about 10 weeks of heavy training so Im feeling kinda beat down and this deload will be just what I need.

Took it easy on the overhead press, warmup 3 sets with bar then;
135 4x10
Went really light on these, just wanted to get the shoulders and arms warmed up for some bench. I had planned to warmup then do a max set of reps on the bench with 405lbs but the guys convinced me to slingshot bench with them. Sets went like this;
405x2 (really explosive, made the plate hit the bottom of the bar at lockout, great speed)
add slingshot
525, felt really light but I drifted back over my face and had the spotter take it, didnt want to push it too hard today.
take off slingshot

Did some delt and tricep support work
rope pressdown
2x15 heavy these hurt real bad

rear/side delt raises

tricep pressdown
4x10 heavy

overhead tricep extension

All in all a good day and pretty much my last heavy, high volume day before the meet. I think I will be opening at 450-460 then taking 501 as a second attempt, then base my third attempt off of how 501 feels.

2nd Week of Reverse Band Squats

Reverse Band Squats
330×1 (took it down way too fast)
330×1 (a little better, but still ugly as sin)

I need to work on taking the bar down in a more controlled manner, and coming back up explosively. 3-0-1. There are a lot of fine points in my squat I need to concentrate on, and if my next meet is going to be a push/pull it will give me a lot of time to work on my form rather than weight.

Good Mornings

Goblet Squats (real wide stance to work on my glutes)
4×10 45, 55, 55, 55

Step ups
3×5 65lbs

Squat Thrusters
4×10 45, 55, 55, 55

I've had a cold the past few days, but it's no excuse to not be 100% and work as hard as I can if I am physically capable of doing so.
I felt so broke off after-wards, I almost puked. Going to eat a huuuuuge meal, right after my post working ON pro complex shake (yay samples).

So why bands, or reverse bands?

The use of bands and reverse bands allows a maximal amount of force to be applied throughout the range of motion by utilizing accommodating resistance. the closer you are to lock out the more force you can apply, bands and chains apply more and more force the closer you get to lock out.

A biomechanical analysis of the squat through several experience levels of powerlifting has show that more experienced lifters have a higher rate of upward acceleration when compared to novice lifters.

Bands and chains allow for one to focus on controlling the weight during the descent and exploding during the ascent.

Just be careful not to fall into the fallacy that low-weight reps performed at a high velocity will translate into a higher 1RM. It's a lot like falling into the trap of a high muscular circumference will translate into a higher max(If this were true bodybuilders would beast us all in powerlifting). This is where some specificity comes into play

Specificity: You get what you train for. If you lift quickly you will get better at lifting quickly. If you lift heavy you will get better at lifting heavy

I'm still learning, so what I'm writing are my theories, not law. And I'm just as likely to fuck up as anyone else in my theories (if not more so)

We had 2 new kids come to the team, so we've got 4 kids on their proby period, so all the seasoned vets have to keep on eye out on them. The kids are pretty naturally athletic, but this is the first time they have done this kind of lifting, so it's still a learning experience. It's nice that our pack is growing and more and more kids are getting interested in powerlifting and getting in contact with the team.
The new kids are learning about progression, training, and are fixing their form and bar path with the guidance of our senior members. The kids have great work ethic.

Deadlift with Bands

So tonight I did deadlift with bands
Deadlifting with bands helps with explosiveness (it reminds me a lot of when I did Olympic Style lifts, if you don't get the shit up quick, it's not going up at all). It assists with lock out (which after breaking ground is one of my biggest sticking points), and is great for grip (which I also really need to work on)

135 for 5 reps with the wimpy black bands at three different stances
moderate sumo
super wide sumo

All the reps went up very quickly, felt very crisp and explosive at all stances
After the first set with each stance I increased the band tension.

135 with peach bands (about 125-150lbs tension at lock out)
3 conventional
5 sumo
5 super wide sumo

They still felt very quick and clean. So we added more band tension.
135 with peach and black bands (circa 170-180lbs band tension at lock out)
conventional fail
sumo failx2
super wide sumo x1 (yay)

I kept stalling out mid-thigh on my conventional and sumo. I could hold that shit at mid-thigh for a good 5 seconds and not move a millimeter. I need to work on that hip drive and my upper back. All I had to do was pull my shoulder back to lock that last bit out, or shoot my hips through, and it would have been a done deal. The lock out on the wide sumo took a hot second but it was good.

snatch grip rack pull
135 x5
135 x5
135 x5

Split Squat
2x10 with 60lbs

Sumo squat to low box with KB
10 with 45
10 with 45
10 with 55
10 with 55

Hammer Curls

3 sets of 10 with 20lbs

I really need to work on my hips and grip more. I will probably work in some pull throughs, heavy rack pulls, and farmer's walks.

We ran out of protein so Vince got me to chug raw egg whites as my post-lift shake ( holy crap it's like drinking a giant loogey). We'll be going to get more protein tomorrow. Practically our shopping list down here.

Bamboo Benching

Bamboo bench for the first time.

I used a much narrower grip than my competition style. I was a thumb's length in on the knurling rather than having my pinky-middle finger on the ring. I felt more stable at the narrow grip while doing bamboo bench.
It was pretty unstable, I could definitely feel it utilizing a lot of my stabilizing muscles. The follow up with the DB Bench also seriously taxed my deltoids.

Iso-lateral DB bench

I'll have to use 45's or 50's next time, 40's are getting too easy.

Skull crushers

Push downs

Pull Downs

KB Row

Pull ups (1/2's to save my shoulders)
I still felt this in my shoulders. My back strength isn't nearly what it was, weighted pullups used to be my favorite, and so good for grip.

Chest fly

Push ups
3 different widths: diamond, military, and wide. Push-ups (especially weighted) are by far my favorite Bench Assistance work.

I think I need to do more work with my latts, because I use them a lot in my lift. I'm also debating bringing my bench press grip in a little. Decisions, decisions.

It's my third work-out using HMB. I haven't been feeling too broke off after lifting, even though I am getting back into the huge volume that I used to do. Before when I did huge volume, I'd wake up in the middle of the night in pain from DOMs. I can't say it's the HMB helping tx DOMs or prevent it, or increasing my work capacity, because it could also be muscle maturity or the caffeine (400mg prior to lifting, via VaporXT by AMS)or the creatine that I am taking co-currently with the HMB, but I do know that right now I'm usually much more miserable. I haven't been experiencing the loss of ROM that I normally have when I get DOMs either. Still a little stiff and sore, but not walking around like a zombie or feeling like one.

Pressing like a gangster is where its at

Had my upper body/press day today. I only do upper body once a week right now so I have to really make it count.

Today we trained with a skeleton crew, Just Lester, Lindsey and myself. The dudes were pressin' and the chick was squattin' (Isnt it funny how the chick is the one doing the real work?) But hey, you gotta do upper body sometime.

Started off with oly bar strict press out of the rack, I usually pick 2 or 3 press movements for ME upper day and I ALWAYS switch it up. I helped Lester work on his form a bit (The powerlifters in our crew dont like to overhead press, but I have been peer pressuring them nonstop until they give in and do it just so they dont have to hear my mouth anymore. All sets were done strict with no leg drive.

My sets looked like this today:

bar 3x5
135 2x5
225 2x3
275 1x3
320 miss
320 x1 smokeshow (just got out of my groove on the first one) 5lb pr!

Next we took it over to the bench. I am just over 3 weeks out from my push-pull meet, so I wanted to hit a small bench pr.
Sets went like this:
bar 4x5
135 2x5
225 2x3
315 x3
405 x2
455 x1
505 x1 pr!

All sets were done as explosively as possible, I kept the volume down on purpose today.

Then I did a bunch of super-secret-underground-cool looking support work.

And now Im smoked so I am going to spend the rest of the night eating like 4000 calories and tons of protein so I dont feel like a bombed-out pile of crap tomorow. Vince out

But bands and chains excite me

Reverse Band Squat Day
It was an awesome lifting day today, just me, Vince and L, so I got tons of shit done and it felt amazing. L gave me a belt (yay) and it has a lever (my first real belt). It's about 8 inches too long so Vince and I are going to alter it a little.
Rev Band Squat to a Box
(I still don't have a belt, all these were raw)
330x1 (fail) I lost the shit coming off the box, but it felt pretty good. I'll get it next time.

Good Mornings

Goblet Squats

Step ups

Blob Deadlift
4x10   55, 65, 70, 80

Squat Thrusters
3x10  35, 45, 55

3x10 weighted

Bands and chains are still a hot topic in some circles. More collegiate coaches are incorporating them, more lifters regularly integrate them into cycles and even the occasional punk-ass bench warrior knows what the fuck they are for.
And because they are being used by more people, they are being used by more stupid people. Here's a rough over view of what bands and chains do for you, and how to use them optimally (or just how not to look like a total fucking idiot).

Accommodating Resistance: Increasing resistance as lifters force increases through range of motion.(meaning it gets harder the closer you are to the top of the motion e.g. locking out)

Studies have shown that using bands and chains in strength and conditioning programs even for trained athletes show improvement over conventional training.

Why it's good: It gets your body adjusted to moving and handling heavy weights. Like doing heavy rack pulls to assist with DL or heavy picks or yoke walks to assist with squats.

Why it will never replace a full ROM: You will lose your shit in the hole if this is all you do. If you don't train that range of motion you won't be good at it. (friends don't let friends squat high)

Basic use
  1. At the top you should have little or no assist from reverse bands, 
  2. With regular bands you should have little resistance in the hole (you can add more resistance as you get more comfortable with them), 
  3. Chains should still be touching the ground at the top.
  4. Please use them in a mono, set up directly under the bar. It is do-able in a rack, but it takes a little more time to learn to manage. Walking out with bands needs to be practiced, don't get screwed by a rubber band or folded like a cheap suit.
  5. Don't do it alone. (Well, you guys that want to end up in the "Natural Selection F'd-up When You Were Born" section, you go ahead, dooooo iiiiiiit.)
  6. Make sure they are even on the bar, check, check and check again. Tape them if you need to, get little plates on the inside so they don't move. Whatever it takes, just don't have the buggers getting you off kilter. 
  7. Don't get carried away.
  8. Move some damn weight.

A day on diet

So some typical eating that goes on at the house.

2 eggs
black coffee

ON 100% Whey Protein Shake

Chicken Breast

Sardines (I actually like them)

Ground Beef
Green Beans

Vince's breakfast:
Eggs, more eggs, egg whites, milk


For your viewing pleasure

Meat Salad, careful tossing.

Meat: don't be a pussy

What is protein?  Some basics (really, really simplified)

-A series of amino acids that are the building blocks for enzymes, DNA, hormones and muscle.

Sources of complete proteins: Meats, milk, eggs, fish and nuts all provide the necessary essential amino acids.
Please note: the best foundation of any diet is a solid one, meaning real solid food. Liquid diets are for beauty queens and drag queens.

So meat is an awesome source of amino acids to build muscle mass, but when meat isn't readily available, or you've eaten so much the site of edible mammals makes you queasy, there are other options.

What are the benefits of supplementing protein?

If you're lifting rather than being a lazy fattie, increasing your protein intake can
· Increase lean muscle mass
· Improve body composition (muscle to fat ratio)
· Increase strength
· Improve exercise recovery

What kind of protein should I take?
There are many different types of protein. Each has its own benefits and drawbacks.

Protein quality is measured by:
· Amount of essential amino acids
· Ease of break down into amino acids
· How much can be used by the body

Whey Protein Isolate
· Milk protein
· Considered the highest quality
oEasily digested
o Well Utilized by the body
oGreat amino acid profile
· Fast protein
oRapidly broken down and digested
· Ideal protein to take near a work-out (pre, during, or post)
· Most popular
oEasy to find
oDozens of flavors

· Milk derived protein
· Slow protein
oTakes longer to digest
oDelayed and continuous release of amino acids
oMay help prevent muscle from being broken down between meals
· Ideal for between meals or before bed
· Doesn’t have as much of certain essential amino acids as whey protein isolate

Egg Protein
· From egg whites
· High concentration of essential amino acids
· Easily digested and used by the body
· Contains almost no fat or carbohydrates
· Excellent alternative for lactose intolerant

· Great choice for pansies

How much protein should I take?
Enough. Honestly the range can be pretty insane depending on your weight and activity level, anywhere from .7 to 2 grams/lb

When should I take protein?
· Immediately before, during or after exercise
oFast protein
· Between meals
oSlow protein
· Before bed
oSlow protein

Will taking protein alone make me bigger and stronger?
NO, don't be a dumb ass. If you want something quick and easy, make like a tree and piss off.
· Excess calories can lead to fat gain (so if you add more protein, you need to take in less rubbish)
· Exercise or resistance training program must be implemented
· There must be very high day to day physical demands

But, studies have shown that just by increasing intake of essential amino acids, protein synthesis can increase.

Deadlift training

Went in to Team Jax training spot today with the intention of pulling my planned second attempt for Orlando meet (830). Right from the start I was feeling like crap because I havent slept well at all the last three nights...

Warmed up raw, dont remember the weights. Put my new blue suit on and pulled a slow, lazy, nasty 750...wasnt heavy but it was slow and it made me mad. I switched to my black suit which is a little tighter and pulled another slow and nasty 800, same deal, wasnt difficult but it was just slow.

It was so damn slow that by the time I locked out my thumbs were killing me! (hook grip)

I rested for a few min then proceeded to miss 835 twice with an over/under grip...just not enough pop today.

I need to get this fixed asap because pulling like that isnt going to cut it on the 19th.

So now Im just going to eat and be pissed off the rest of the day about how bad my pull sucked...that will ensure that I do a better job come meet day.

A few adjustments and I will be right back on track.

Dont have any funny quips at the moment, because deadlifting like crap is no laughing matter!

I will get back to jokes and funny stuff once I smash some more pr's.

RUM4 and Orlando Barbell Classic

Well I sent an email to Eric Talmant (RUM coordinator) and asked if I could compete last minute in the deadlift only portion of RUM4 on Saturday morning. If he tells me yes then I will be shooting for a 800-810lb raw deadlift on Saturday. If not then on Friday I will be suiting up and pulling my planned second attempt of 830 for the Orlando Barbell Classic meet on February 19th.

Yea I snore...what of it.

I thrash in my sleep through dreams of delivering barehanded beatings to man and wild beast....

It will be interesting to actually keep track of my training for once...I might be as surprised as everyone else being that I have never kept a training log before

lift. eat. sleep. repeat.