Interview With Bench Presser Jay Fry by Ben Tatar of CriticalBench.com
There have been many bench press icons. When we go back into this history of
the sport of benching we have heard of great names and benchers who
dominated their time. Names like Anthony Clark, Jim Williams, Glen Chabot,
Jamie Harris, and George Halbert will always be remembered as the bench
presses biggest stars. However, there is a new rising star in the bench
press now! A new bencher who is making progress in the bench press in ways
that the world has never seen before! A man who out of no where benched
650lbs at 181 and who is just getting started! Here at Critical Bench, we
will give you the first taste of one of the best benchers in the world today
and possibly the best bencher ever a few years down the road. At Critical
Bench we bring you the man, the myth, the bench monster and a future bench
press legend, Jay Fry!
1) Critical Bench: I am with the new bench star of the world right now, Jay
Fry. Jay, can you tell us about yourself?
Jason Fry: My name is Jay Fry and I'm from Ohio. I have a 650lbs bench press
and I weigh 181lbs.
2)Critical Bench: Jay, we all have our stories about how we became great
benchers. What got you started in the bench press and what is next?
Jay Fry: If you read Mike Wolfe's interview, he would have told you that he
was the fat kid who always got picked on. Well, it was the opposite for me.
I was always the scrawny kid who got picked on and that motivated me to
become stronger. Well, one thing leads to another and here I am now benching
650@181 and before you know it I will be benching over 700lbs, making me the
first person ever to bench 700lbs weighing less than 200lbs! Then I am going
to bench 722@181! I want to bench quadruple my body weight! Nothing is going
to stop me and I am going to keep on benching more from here on out!
3) Critical Bench: Jay, great goals! Tell us what is it like holding 650lbs
in your hands?
Jay Fry: 650lbs doesn't feel much different than 550 or 600lbs. All the
weights feel the same in my hands. However, whether I'm benching 550, 600,
650, or 700 there is only one thought that enters my mind and that thought
is "Give me the press command before my arms break off." Once I get the
press command then the weight explodes up. I have never failed with a weight
at lockout as long as I got the weight to touch my shirt properly.
4) Critical Bench: Yeah, holding 650lbs has to put a tremendous amount of
stress on your tendons. If you happen to press every weight that touches
your shirt, what do you think would happen if you tried to bench press
800lbs right now at 181?
Jay Fry: Well, I'd be scared. I'm not ready for 800 yet but I'm looking
forward to benching 700lbs and then constantly shattering my own World
Records in the future and hopefully someday getting to the point where I can
bench press 800lbs. The sky is the limit.
5) Critical Bench: Jay, your benching is truly phenomenal. So, tell us a
little about your training philosophy and how you got so strong, so fast?
Jay Fry: Well, I am one of the laziest powerlifters in the world! You can
quote me on that! My workouts never last over an hour and I do the easiest
exercises. For example when I do barbell rows I am always leaning next to a
6) Critical Bench: Do you train with boards or rack lockouts? What about
full range of motion bench presses? Do you squat? Tell us about your bench
Jay Fry: I don't train my chest, I don't train with boards, I don't train
with rack lockouts, I don't squat deep and heavy (because then I will gain
too much weight for my weight class), and my workouts are very short.
Instead I do TWO basic exercises twice a week and they are:
1) I do Speed bench press days with bands.
2) I do heavy floor presses or flat bench presses with bands.
The flat bench and floor press with bands are keys! I swear by it. I HAVE
NEVER HIT A PLATEAU BEFORE TRAINING LIKE THIS!
7) Critical Bench: Why don't you train with lockout movements?
Jay Fry: I get so much speed from all the bands and the shirt that lockout
training just isn't necessary. The flat bench and floor press with
variations of band tension make the bench press movement like a core lift.
These two movements strengthen all of my weak links in just those two basic
movements. This is what has worked for me. Some of the other best benchers
do use those other movements but I'm very happy with the results that I'm
getting by just doing floor presses and bench presses with bands and these
movements have taken me to competing in the Arnold Classic bench meet in
8) Critical Bench: What type of bench press shirt do you use?
Jay Fry: I use a Double Ply Rage X.
9) Critical Bench: So, you are benching over 650lbs at 181! A lot of
benchers believe that gear lifters can't bench much RAW. We know that isn't
always the case and that many of the shirt benchers are also some of the
strongest guys out there without a shirt as well. So, what do you bench
without a shirt? And is it easy for you to bench 315lbs for 10 reps at
181lbs without a shirt or don't you have a lot of raw power?
Jay Fry: To be honest I have bench pressed 340lbs for reps of 10 without a
shirt and I have also bench pressed 455lbs without a shirt at 181lbs.
However. I am focused on benching the most weight in the world with a shirt
and benching RAW (without a shirt) isn't my goal.
10) Critical Bench: So, what do you consider to be the 3 most important
secrets for getting such strength whether it be benching with a shirt or
Jay Fry: In the following order I would say:
1) Strong Triceps
3) Rear Delts.
11) Critical Bench: What is your mindset before a big lift?
Jay Fry: I lift the best when I am tired. Every time I failed in a meet was
because I was pumped up and that messed me up. If I am feeling very
aggressive I lose focus and I can't concentrate properly.
Critical Bench: Thanks, Jay you are the new big star in bench pressing! Is
there anything else that you would like to say as we wrap your interview up?
Jay Fry: I would like to thank my wife for having put up with my
powerlifting. I also want to thank George Halbert and Tony Ramos. I wouldn't
be where I'm at if it wasn't for their expert training. Special thanks to
Mike Wolfe, Scott Vickery, you guys are awesome! Last but not least thanks
to Inzer Advanced Design for their generous sponsorship and Get diesel
supplements. I also want to thank Ben Tatar and www.criticalbench.com for
the interview and all of my fans. Thanks everyone!