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Big Man Teiko Reindorf Interview

Interview with Big Man Teiko Reindorf As told to CriticalBench.com by Ben Tatar

CRITICAL BENCH: Teiko, tell us about yourself.

My name is Teiko Reindorf aka TKO , aka the Enforcer, aka the Chocolate Thunder.

I am a personal trainer/ ex- bouncer based out of Toronto, Canada and it is my personal mission to make Big Men Strong.

With that said, I want to clarify something about my interpretation of strength.  It isn’t just what you do in the weight room or on the field.  The strength I’m talking about applies to all areas of your life.  Hopefully you’d like to join me on that journey.

CRITICAL BENCH: Tell us about what you do and your website.

My website is called Teikoreindorf.com and it is the one and only site on the web that teaches big men how to become strong and little men how to become BIG.

On my site you will find articles about training, stories from my days working the door at seedy Toronto nightclubs as and frequent updates detailing my experiences as a trainer in downtown Toronto.

 CRITICAL BENCH: What are your top 10 training tips to getting as huge and ripped as possible? (What are your tips without having to constantly sacrifice one for the other.)

– Huge is a mindset… it’s something you decide you want to become. Once that decision is made, everything becomes easy

– I’ve never met anyone who became big by talking about it. Get under the bar!

– Until I see one of these so called ectomorphs carry five meals to work and eat em – I ain’t listening to any excuse why they can’t grow.

– When it comes to mass, volume is king

– When it comes getting strong, focus on intensity.

– It’s impossible to grow when you are injured. Put time aside for soft tissue work and recovery.

– Eat real food whenever possible, people have been getting big and strong way before we started taking supplements.

– You know that exercise you hate to do? That’s the one that will get you stronger.

– Train with like-minded people. If your training partner whines or misses workouts – ditch him, he doesn’t respect your time or training goals.

– There will be a time when you won’t be able to put up the numbers you once did… until that time comes – go all out.

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  CRITICAL BENCH: What are the 5 biggest mistakes you see other lifters make?

– Trying to talk their way into a physique. All of that theory doesn’t matter when a weight is bearing down on you.

– Not knowing when to back off. Sometimes your body has had enough, you’ve gotta learn to listen to it.

– Ignoring their blind spots. Everyone has a lift they excel at (whooptyfreakin doo) the guys I respect are the ones who figure out how to get better at the things they suck at.

– Not warming-up properly. It doesn’t matter when you are twenty and full of piss n vinegar but once you start getting older skipping warm-up is a recipe for disaster.

– Going to gyms where they play Justin Timberlake and Katy Perry. Your environment is everything. If you are around studs, you will become a stud.

 teikowebCRITICAL BENCH: How do you see the future of the Iron World?

– Lifting has become huge. Everyone is training now. The industry will further splinter off into little cells like it has been. I’d also like to see someone develop a system, which incorporates the best of all training systems, but I think that is a long ways away.

CRITICAL BENCH: Tell us about your diet. Do you have any special diet tips for bulking or cutting?

LOL diet? Hold on lemme put away these chips.

No seriously though, I’ve been a big boy my whole life and after many failed attempts at dieting… I am done with diets. My advice to people is to eat real food and train hard. Don’t bother being too militant with your diet unless you are stepping on stage somewhere.

CRITICAL BENCH: If people visit your website Teikoreindorf.com, big guys can learn how to get stronger. Why do you think there are so many huge guys that are weak?

Huge guys are weak because they are lazy or are doing the wrong type of training. 

The laziness is a direct result of being blessed with big boy genes, when you don’t have to work quite as hard for size – it becomes really easy to get complacent.

In terms of inappropriate training… this all falls back on the whole bodybuilding thing. Almost everyone who gets into strength training cuts their teeth with bodybuilding.  Most people realize somewhere along the way that bodybuilding, though effective for size – stinks when it comes to building strength.

The big guys you see who haven’t been able to move past this are the same ones who never get any stronger.

CRITICAL BENCH: Also, why are so many small guys strong but not huge?

It’s gotta be the whole Napoleon complex thing. A lot of small guys go extra hard in the gym to offset their size, it’s a bit of a gift and a curse.  When done properly it can yield massive results but if unchecked… it generally leads to burn-out or injury.

CRITICAL BENCH:  what should huge guys who are weak do differently to be strong?

Aside from man-up?

Honestly I think your success is largely based on who you train with. I’ve made my best gains in size and strength by training with people who force me to train harder. Hmm now that I think about it, my best training partners have all been little guys!

In short, if your training partner isn’t borderline psycho about sticking to a training plan – get a new one.

CRITICAL BENCH: Do most people want to be huge or strong?

Personally I think most people wanna be both huge and strong. I never buy it when a guy tells me he doesn’t wanna be too big and I’ve never heard anyone say they don’t wanna be stronger. Guys who say things like that don’t believe they can be bigger or stronger so they try to downplay it.

 CRITICAL BENCH: Tieko, what is it about weight training that you just love?

It’s a vehicle for transformation. When I started training I was a fat little butterball. Through my dedication to the iron, I’ve evolved into something much greater.  Nowadays I try to convince people to call me The Chocolate Thunder.  That never would have happened if I had never lifted weights.

CRITICAL BENCH: In closing is there anything else you would like to say?

Just that training should be more than just something physical you do. Each time you walk into the gym you are faced with an opportunity to test yourself and you should never forget that.

Go Big Or Go Home

– Teiko

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Is Intensity Overrated?

 

Is Intensity Overrated?
By Tyler Bramlett

facebook-motivationalOver the last decade I’ve seen high intensity training come in and out of favor. One week we call it the devil’s incarnate and the next we decided that it will cure cancer. In this short article I want to share with you the positives and negatives of high intensity training and answer the question, “is intensity overrated”?

To start out, we need to identify the purpose of using high intensity in your workouts. Here’s 3 Reasons high intensity can benefit you and your workouts:

  1. Building Massive Amounts Of Muscle
  2. Skyrocketing Your Metabolism Into Overdrive
  3. Forging Elite Mental Toughness

Sounds good right?

But let’s not forget the downsides of high intensity training. Here’s 3 reasons why high intensity training can hurt you and your workouts:

  1. Nervous System Burnout
  2. General Fatigue And Overtraining
  3. INJURY!!!

So… What makes the difference between training at a high intensity being of benefit for you or destroying you?

Well, the way I see it is that way to many people focus on intensity as their only variable of quantifying results. They forget about things like volume, density and movement complexity, which can be useful components to manipulate in any workout program.

You see, hanging your hat merely on intensity without determining these other variables is a recipe for disaster and must be remedied if you want to safely use high intensity training in your workouts.ee it is that way to many people focus on intensity as their only variable of quantifying results. They forget about things like volume, density and movement complexity, which can be useful components to manipulate in any workout program.

The rest of this article will be spent teaching you exactly how I apply this when I design programs for my clients.  It is divided into 3 different phases that you can use to upgrade your workouts, learn to move like a pro and bust through your plateaus!

 Phase 1 – Movement Competency

A mentor of mine Pavel Tsatsouline once said to me, “you can only fire a cannon from a canoe once.” What he meant by this is that a canoe doesn’t have the structure to endure the intensity of the cannon. Unfortunately this is why most people get injured.

Take for example the squat. If all you ever do is add more and more lbs to the squat over and over again. You may end up being the proud owner of a powerful 5, 6 or 700lb squat, but will you be able to do that for a long and consistent period of time?

tyler-bramlett

My bet is on NO!!

I aim instead to build muscles that look as good as they perform. How I do this is by focusing exclusively on Movement competency first and foremost.

What is movement competency?

It’s really just a sexy way of saying “good form”. If you have good form, if your muscles are firing properly in the proper sequence then you can move onto phase 2. But… If you move to phase 2 before you are ready, you will battle injuries and plateaus for the rest of your life!!

Seek out a good coach (there’s not too many around these days) who knows movement and have them help you reach a high level of movement competency first and foremost before ever adding substantial load to any movement.

Another thing I will leave you with before moving onto phase 2 is the following quote, “Practice doesn’t make perfect… Perfect practice makes perfect.” Truer words are seldom spoken!

Phase 2 – Increase Volume And Density (To Hone Movement Competency)

Once you are able to move correctly, you must go from consciously performing a movement perfectly to unconsciously performing a movement perfectly.

This is what separates the pros from the amateurs! Think of a time when you watched your favorite sport. Think about a moment you remember when you witnessed an athlete do something that you may have considered impossible, but made it look easy or like it was second nature.

This is what you need to aim for!!

When starting this article you may not even have known that you didn’t know. This is called unconscious incompetence. This is the person who works out with bad form and never knows that they have bad form.

Once you understand that what may be keeping you injured or at a standstill with your gains is your movement competency as in phase 1 you move onto a stage psychologists call conscious incompetence. You are now aware of the fact that you move like doo doo.

By following phase 1 you will move onto the next stage known as conscious competence where you know how to move well, with good form but you must be thinking about it in order for it to happen.

By following these guidelines from phase 2 you will then move from the “amateur” conscious competence to the “professional” unconscious competence, where you don’t have to think and you still move well.

Ok… A lot of psych mumbo jumbo, how do you bridge the gap and move like a pro?

You increase your volume and density over a period of time focusing on ALWAYS maintaining perfect form 100% of the time.

Here’s an example of how this can be accomplished over an 8-week period if we were talking about an exercise like the squat.

  • Week 1 – 3 Sets Of 6 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 4 Minutes (Use A Weight You Can Do Every Rep With Perfect Form)
  • Week 2 – 4 Sets Of 8 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 3 Minutes (Same Weight)
  • Week 3 – 5 Sets Of 10 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 2.5 Minutes (Same Weight)
  • Week 4 – 6 Sets Of 8 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 2 Minutes (Same Weight)
  • Week 5 – 6 Sets Of 10 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 2 Minutes (Same Weight)
  • Week 6 – 7 Sets Of 8 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 90 Seconds (Same Weight)
  • Week 7 – 7 Sets Of 10 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 90 Seconds (Same Weight)
  • Week 8 – 8 Sets Of 12 Reps Doing 1 Set Every 90 Seconds (Same Weight)

Each of these workouts will only take you 12 minutes and the benefits of practicing perfect movement and steadily increasing volume and density are enormous. Not to mention you may see a sudden spike in lean muscle being added to your frame from the increased volume.

If moving like a pro, increasing your gains and busting through your plateaus peaks your interest, I highly suggest you spend just 8 weeks following this protocol and watch as you go from moving like a chump to moving like a champ!!

Phase 3 – Now You Can Get Intense!!

Once you’ve rebuilt the way you move and ingrained it in your brain so it has become second nature. Then you can add intensity.

What does this mean?

This means it is now the right time to lift heavy, move faster, kick ass and take names!!!

By the inch it’s a cinch, and by the yard it is hard. Be smart, train smarter and remember… Don’t be an amateur, be a pro!!

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Ryan Lapadat Interview

Interviewed by Ben Tatar

CB: Ryan, tell Critical Bench readers a little about yourself.

RL:  I am Ryan “6 Pack” Lapadat, 33 years old, from Toronto, Ontario. I have been weight lifting since I was 13, and plan on doing it until the day I die.

When I was a little boy I loved superheroes. I suppose most little boys do, but I genuinely believed I was going to grow up to be a superhero. My friends and I would have discussions on what our super power would be if we could only choose one. Some of my friends chose the power of flying, some the power of speed, but I always chose the power of super strength.


In class I would day dream of one day growing up to become a real life superhero who used his super strength to help people.

By the time I became an adult those dreams had all passed. I was conditioned to accept those dreams as merely the imagination of a young boy who did not understand people’s physical limitations. Until some one close to me got sick, suddenly, and passed away. I had just won the National Championships for Powerlifting. The newspapers were interviewing me about my accomplishment when I proclaimed that I wanted to make a difference with my strength.

I went on a city-to-city tour of cancer camps for kids, pulling 26,500 pound school buses 100 feet. The tour made headlines across the country, raised thousands of dollars for sick kids, and more importantly raised hope for those that needed it most.
That tour was followed by several large televised events with me flipping over cars, pulling airplanes, lifting bleachers full of people, and rolling up frying pans with my hands. Guinness World Records in strength were shattered. All these events raised money for sick kids. The largest was my appearance on Canada’s Got Talent, seen by 1.5 million viewers. 
6 Pack Lapadat quickly became a symbol that anything is possible, any goal was feasible, and no dream was unrealistic if a boy could grow up to be a superhero.

Ryan Lapadat was a normal man. 6 Pack Lapadat became a real life superhero and symbol of hope. I have done many feats of strength in my day, but my greatest feat is making people believe in miracles again.

CB: Ryan, you recently won the World Drug-Free Powerlifting Federation’s (WDFPF) championship with a dramatic come-from-behind victory with the last deadlift of the competition. It was a huge upset win that capped off an incredible year. Tell us about that.

RL: We were lifting in the 90KG unequipped division. It was a true 90KG weight division, with same day weigh-ins and drug testing.

The leads the American and Ukrainian champions had gained in the Squat and Bench Press events were so great I found myself in third place with only one deadlift attempt left in the competition. It could not be more dramatic. Or could it?

I had promised my girlfriend’s dad I would win the World Championships and propose to his daughter. In my mind it was destiny, and I was going to make that final lift to win it all no matter how much weight it was. I wanted a day that our grand kids would recall in generations to come like a fairytale.

I could have lifted a relatively “safe” 585 lbs. for an assured bronze or risk it all for the Gold. Two months prior I failed at a 600 lbs deadlift in competition. I would need to lift more than that if I was to win.

I summoned the strength to lift a personal best 610.5 pounds. It was more than 3 times my body weight. It was a huge come-from-behind, all-or-nothing, attempt that ended up cementing the biggest upset victory of the World Championships. I won the World Championships, but more importantly I got engaged to the love of my life! My fairytale was complete.

And they both lived happily ever after…

CB: What was it like being on Canada’s Got Talent?

RL: Scary! I am sure every one has seen shows from the ‘Got Talent’ series. Dozens of countries around the world have this TV series, and it is very popular. Canada’s Got Talent booked the Toronto Convention Centre for the Toronto showcase show. As a powerlifter, I am use to performing in front of a crowd. However, this was nothing like a powerlifting meet. The Toronto Convention Centre was packed wall to wall. There were cameras all over the place, even back stage! The show was to be seen by over a million people, and newspapers across the country did write-ups about it.

 

No pressure eh?

I was going on the show to perform feats of strength. I knew the show was not designed for my talent, so I had to go big and impress early if I was going to be able to advance. The first round, the audition rounds, I pulled an airplane! My audition tape of me towing the plane is here.

The next round I took it a step further and squatted a bleacher full of cheerleaders and kids! I squatted 6 reps in 30 seconds, and every rep was $200 for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. I got a ‘yes’ from all three judges. I told the judges that I was not in it to win the money, I wanted to make a statement. I promised to give away the $100,000 grand prix if I was to win. The video of that round is here and here’s what was said about me.

“Your heart is as great as your strength” – Martin Short, Canada’s Got Talent judge

“To say it was impressive would be an understatement” – TV Guide

I was eventually cut by the judges before the finals, but made it further than I had expected as a strongman. I was proud to represent powerlifting and strongman.

CB: Tell us about your own TV show on OLN and CityTV.

RL: Canada’s Got Talent was my first introduction to major television. I had been networking in the industry and the opportunity to audition for a show called Get Stuffed came up. The show takes four people from four different competitive backgrounds and pits them in competitions where their backgrounds can’t help them.

Two of the four face off each episode. The four cast members stay the same the whole series, but the face-offs change as they rotate which of the four cast members compete. I was proud to represent powerlifting/strongman on the show. It was a lot of fun.

This was my second nationally televised show, but this time I was a permanent cast member. It helped open even more doors for me. It also helped bring more light on the sport of powerlifting. In Canada, as with America, powerlifting athletes never got that much attention.

CB:   Tell Critical Bench readers about the Guinness World Records that you set in weight lifting? I see you have two. Also explain the mental process in achieving them.

RL: I have been performing feats of strength for sick kid’s charities for the past 5 years now. It is a cause close to my heart. On July 16th, 2010, I broke two Guinness World Records in one day. I attempted the 1 hour Squat record, and the 1 hour Deadlift record, both in the same day. It was the hardest thing I ever attempted in my life. I literally trained for 4 months straight, every day, I squatted or deadlifted for four hours straight. When I say I deadlifted or squatted for four hours straight, I mean every 30 seconds I had to lift 5-6 reps. The weight would fluctuate.

It was the most brutal training of my life. One day I did 8 hours of deadlifting, with a set being lifted every 30 seconds. It was to test if I would break mentally.

I almost did get to that the point. You hit a wall, and literally almost break down emotionally in the gym. It is a weird feeling. I was deadlifting at 3am, just to make it even more difficult on myself. I wanted to push myself to the limit in training and prove to myself that I could not be broken mentally. There are bigger and stronger men out there, but I’ll be damned if some one is going to be stronger mentally. I’ll let my body fall to pieces and walk through hell before I quit.

At the end of the day, two Guinness World Records were broken for a local sick kid’s hospital. The kids and parents got a powerful message about mind over matter. We humans have will and pride, and those are tough to break, even when our bodies do.

The video produced by FUSION bodybuilding is here.

CB: Tell us about your experience competing in the World Championships of Powerlifting? How did you celebrate after you won?

RL: That was the third World Championships I qualified for. It is a lot of hard work to make it that far in Powerlifting, hours and hours of work in the gym.

The first World Championships I qualified for (82.5 KG, unequipped), I failed to place. I was so far behind the Gold medalist it was as if there was an extra event in his total I hadn’t shown up for, lol.

I didn’t pay it no mind, though. I did my best and stuck to my game plan. I kept at it, and as the years went by I qualified for the Single Lift World Championships in the 90KG weight class (unequipped). That time I was able to place and bring home some medals.

However, it was not the three lift Powerlifting World Championships. I had unfinished business in the 3 lift. This last World Championships was for the three lift World title, and it was my third World Championships. I felt I was ready. I refused to be denied.

As for celebrating, we were in Boston, and went to a restaurant called the Prudential. It is 52 stories up, overlooks the whole city with glass walls, and has a live Jazz band. Classy stuff. We ate like royalty, drank champagne, and lived it up for the night.

CB: What is your advice for others to get strong? Give us ten tips for super human strength!

RL: Funny you ask, I just recently wrote an article giving ten tips to increase strength. I go into more detail than I could here, so allow me to drop the link here and suggest readers give that article a peak. Keep in mind, strength some times comes at the expense of cardio endurance. If your goal is strength, please do read on…

CB: What are your 10 tips for an amazing Squat?

RL: 1) Foot placement for balance can be critical!

Once a lifter is accustomed to the Squat, he (or she) will adjust his foot placement to his specific liking. Often Powerlifters and bodybuilders who have been squatting for years will develop their own squatting style (whether sumo stance, shoulder width, or narrow for bounce at the bottom). For beginners, I would suggest feet shoulder width apart, with the toes pointing out on a 45 degree angle. This will help with balance during the Squat. The feet point out on a 45 degree angle will also force the knees to flare outwards, instead of bow inwards, during the lift. The knees pushing out helps turn on the muscles along the posterior chain (the hamstrings and glutes).

         2) Take a full breath of air and hold it!

I know your gym teacher taught you to blow out when you lift weights. Your gym teacher was wrong. Picture a large balloon. We are going to put a small rock on this large balloon. If the ballon is not fully inflated, the weight of the rock will push this balloon forward or backward, and change the form of the ballon. This is what happens when your body is not tight and full of air during the Squat.

When you Squat, it is important to take a full breath of air to inflate that balloon. Now the small rock will sit on the balloon, and not cause the balloon to pitch forward or backward, or loose it’s form.

         3) Wrap the bar around your body!

I know, literally speaking, it is impossible to take the barbell, and wrap it around your body. However, when you place the barbell on the bottom of your traps and prepare to squat, I want you to try your hardest to do just that! Clinching the barbell and pulling inward as if attempting to bend the bar around your upper body will tighten your back and shoulders. Again, picture the large balloon. You need the balloon to keep it’s form and stay inflated to balance the small rock on top of it. If you are loose up top, you will pitch forward in your squat and loose form. This will put stress on the lower back.

Taking a full breath of air and clinching the barbell as if to wrap it around you will tighten your upper body up, and engage all the muscles in your core and back. This will greatly improve your balance, and also help strengthen your upper body and core, during the lift.

         4) Point your elbows toward the ground!

After you have placed your feet, taken a breath of air, and tightened your upper body, a lifter should point their elbows toward the ground. The elbows should remain pointing towards the ground at all times. Picture your elbows as the steering wheel, and your upper body as the wheels. If your elbows point to the ground, your upper body is being directed to stay upright. If your elbows begin to point backwards on a 45 degree angle (which is the most common placement for those who Squat improperly), then the upper body will be directed to pitch forward. This will in turn put a lot of pressure on the lower back. The pressure on the lower back will then work it’s way down the chain and cause the body to adjust and put more pressure on your knees.

It is important to keep your chest out and facing forward. Have a friend look to see if your elbows are pointing to the ground or backwards on a 45 degree angle when you squat. Often lifters are unaware of the placement of their elbows. Or they begin with the elbows pointing down, but shift them on an angle as they Squat closer to parallel.

         5) Look up on a 45 degree angle!

I see people looking at themselves in the mirror all the time when they squat. The best way to keep balance is to remain upright and tight. The body will naturally want to pitch forward with the weight of the barbell on your back as you Squat. Keeping your head tilted on a 45 degree angle upwards, with your eyesight the same, will help keep your upper body upright. Like a person who is beginning to drive, if they look one direction they automatically start steering toward that direction ever so slightly. This is the same with the Squat. Help direct your body in the right direction by controlling your head placement (wrestlers and other athletes already understand the need to keep your head up when lifting).

         6) Break at the hips, not the knees!

Once you have completed steps 1-5, you are ready to start lowering into the squat (I know, you never thought there was so much to do with the upper body when Squatting, but now you see why I cringe when people think Squatting is for the legs only). Perhaps lowering into the Squat is not the right wording, as you are not so much lowering as you are sitting backwards.

Attempt to keep your knees in the same place while you break at the hips and push your butt backwards as if you are trying to touch an imaginary wall behind you with it. You keep sitting backward, not sitting straight down, reaching for that wall. The wall is not there, so you end up lowering downwards the further back you reach. This movement, when keeping your upper body tight, will cause you to feel as though your are coiling a spring. A tight upper body is critical to keeping balance. So is flaring your knees outward and not forward or inward.

         7) Do not let your knees go past your toes!

A good indication you are not sitting backward, and are in fact sitting straight down too much, is if your knees are drifting past your toes. If that is the case, you are no longer loading up your hamstrings and glutes properly, your upper body is pitching forward too much, and your are putting extra pressure and strain on your lower back and knees.

Just like the elbows, ask a friend to watch you squat and to pay attention if your knees drift over your toes. If they are, a red flag should be set off that your are doing something wrong. Likely you need to tighten your upper body and sit further back in your Squat.

A good way to practice sitting back with the Squat is to grab a bench and to place it directly in the middle of the Squat rack. Your feet will be placed straddling the bench, and you will sit backward onto the bench. You do not sit down onto the bench! You never even touch the bench with our butt. You actually are aiming to touch the bench with your inner thighs. This will make you push your butt out and activate your glutes and hamstrings (which powerlifters call “the seat of power”). You merely touch the bench with your inner thighs as a marker for sitting backward, and rise back up as soon as they do touch. Some times spreading the knees at the bottom of the Squat helps the lifter to achieve the proper depth while not letting their knees drift over their toes. It is at the bottom of the Squat that most lifters have problems keeping their knees back.

         8) A flat back is not enough, a proper Squat has an arched back!

Most males Squat with a flat back when they first start out. I have noticed it’s not natural for them to arch their backs when sitting backward into the Squat. This limits the activation of the posterior chain (“The seat of Power”), and ultimately limits the strength and gains the lifter will get out of the lift. It also puts stress on the lower back. Arching the lower back will help the glutes and hamstrings turn on, and keep the upper body tight and flexed. A flat back limits all this by taking the brunt of the lift.

If mastering the arch in the lower back is a problem, I suggest squatting onto a bench as mentioned in step 7. You’ll be able to tell if you’re squatting with an arch in the lower back by what hits the bench. If it’s your butt, arch your lower back more. If it’s your thighs, you’re on point (again, you are not sitting onto the bench, just touching it and then coming back up).

         9) Drive upward when in “the hole”!

“The hole” is what powerlifters and bodybuilders call the bottom of the squat. It is important to understand that “the hole” is not a quarter of the way down, or halfway down. “The Hole” is just below parallel. That means you need to squat so the upper part of your leg is parallel to the ground, then the dip just a bit lower so the crook of your hip breaks parallel. That is a full Squat. No less. Any less than that, and you are training partials. Partials are also useful (even lock outs), but should never be mixed up with calling them Squats.

Once in the hole, a lifter is at the most vulnerable part of the lift. They are also at the part of the lift that makes them work the most and gives them the most gains and benefits. That is why it is important to always Squat into the hole, and break parallel with the crook of the hip. Like mentioned before, get a friend to see if you are Squatting low enough (along with if you are keeping your elbows pointing toward the ground, your knees back from your toes, and your head up, chest out).

Once you hit the hole, fire with everything you got to drive upward. Do not pitch forward. Concentrate your force to drive upward. Keeping your chest out, your elbows down, and your head pointing upward will all help with the direction of your drive. If you are looking forward, and your elbows are pointing backward on an angle, than your body is going to be pitched forward slightly. This makes it a lot harder to drive upward. It makes the lift inefficient, and stresses the wrong parts of the lifter.

         10) Wash, rinse, and repeat!

Once you have completed the lift, you go through steps 1-10 all over again for every single rep of every single set. That is the rule. That is the unspoken law. The one rep you get lazy on can be the one time you injure yourself (especially when you start to move up in weight).

Getting lazy with your set up will result in diminished results. Properly Squatting will increase muscularity and strength for your whole body, not just your legs! Your arms are flexed pulling on the bar. Your back and shoulder blades are tight and flexed from the pull on the bar. Your chest is out and head up, activating your core and midsection. Your sitting back on the Squat activates the full lower part of your body correctly and efficiently.

When you have mastered the Squat, these 10 steps will not take long to do. In fact, a lifter can set up a squat with all 10 points in a second between every rep once they have them down. However, it is important for a lifter to rehearse these steps with light weight until they have them to memory. To do so, have a friend watch your Squat from the side and to look for the following…

-Is your head up?

-Are your elbows pointing down?

-Did you take a big breath?

-Are your knees drifting over your toes? Are your knees flaring outward like they should in the hole?

-Are you breaking parallel with the crook of your hip?

Thats it for now. Now go Squat.  You can thank me later when you see the results!!

CB: What are the 5 biggest mistakes that you see other weight lifters make?

RL: 1)I see people doing ONLY partial squats. Some people are doing quarter squats and thinking they are parallel. Some are doing parallel and thinking they are ass to the grass. There is a major difference in the gains you get from squatting a short range of motion constantly and squatting a full range of motion. Partial squats have a place in your workout routine, but they should not be the only squatting you do.

2) Not enough free weights! People who say they never see any gains in size and strength are usually the people who stick to the machines. They might get adventurous and try out a smith machine to bench, squat or dead. You will not see proper gains unless you use free weights. Usually, people don’t use free weights because they don’t know proper technique and are intimidated. This is understandable, but ask some one who does know their way around the free weights. Otherwise you will have a low ceiling on your gains.

3) Overuse of wrist straps to keep their grip on the barbell. This will drop your grip strength significantly. Use chalk, or a chalk substitute. You are only as strong as your grip strength. If you need a strap to keep that bar in your hands, than you can’t lift that bar.

4) Getting advice from the wrong places! Be careful where you get your advice from. I see people “training” friends in the gym a lot. Most of the time they are just ordinary gym guys who are taking friends to the gym and showing them how to lift. I know their heart is in the right place, but sometimes they are teaching improper techniques. Being a gym rat does not make you a personal trainer. In most gyms, there will be only a dozen people who know how to Squat and Deadlift properly.

5) People often don’t train a proper routine to hit their whole body evenly. I hear people say every body part gets a full day, so they are hitting their body evenly. Arms, back, chest, shoulders, and legs all get a day of workout.

That’s great, but is your lower body from your waist down 1/5 of your body? No. So why are you training it only 1/5 of your gym days? This is why most people have over developed upper bodies and under developed legs. It is also why most people are amazed at the numbers powerlifters can lift. They don’t realize how strong they could be if they trained properly. Your glutes and hams are your seat of power. Most people are not unlocking that secret to strength. It’s a shame.

CB: What would you like to see change in the iron game?

RL: It is a dream of mine to have Powerlifting in the Olympics. That would pretty much change the game, in all respects, for the best. There would be one federation, with universal equipment rules, drug testing, and mainstream recognition (with media and sponsorships that come with that). There could still be professional federations with multi-gear, and no drug testing. Every sport has professional ranks.

CB: So far in your iron journey list us a) a great moment, b) a crazy moment c) a funny moment and d) a moment that changed you forever.

RL: The greatest moment of my Iron Journey was winning the World Championships of Powerlifting (WDFPF). Being such a big underdog, and coming from behind like that to win it all with the very last deadlift – it was like a movie. I always dreamed of it happening and I always played out a dramatic scene for it, but I never could have dreamed a better story. It was perfect.

The craziest moment was when I tried to pull two planes connected together by a rope, live on National TV. The first plane started to move and then the second plane jack knifed the rope broke, lol, It was a mess.

A moment that changed my life was when I won the National Championships and went on tour to visit Cancer Camps for kids. I pulled 26,500 lbs. school buses. I met some amazing kids and their families and saw things I’ll never forget. It was bitter sweet. I won’t go into detail, but there are some moments I’ll never forget.

CB: What are your future goals?

RL: I look forward to defending my World Championship in Scotland next year. I look forward to continuing my television career, and pushing 6 Pack Lapadat, Inc. even further. I have made a lot of strides in the past few years and built my brand. I hope to continue this. I have several projects in the works that will be big for me and for Powerlifting/Strongman.

I also plan on pulling another plane this year for charity, and doing more charity work for kids now that I am Champ for the year. As long as I can, I want to represent the sport of powerlifting properly, and use my marketing degree to bring media and public attention to the sport.

CB: Do you have any funny or interesting stories that you would like to share?

RL:  At my first Nationals I was in a rush and couldn’t find two matching socks. I had to wear one black and one white deadlift sock. I won the Nationals and ever since I wear one black and one white deadlift sock for good luck.

I also took the chalk and drew “superhero muscles” on my lifting suit. I drew in a 6 Pack on my stomach. No one knew who I was, because it was my first Nationals, so people called me 6 Pack.

I won, and the newspapers called me 6 Pack and ever since I have been 6 Pack Lapadat. I have been on two TV shows in Canada, and in both of them as 6 Pack Lapadat. I get booked for appearances, and I am always 6 Pack Lapadat.

Life is funny, you can’t call it. I drew in a fake set of Superhero muscles and now the Canadian press calls me the real life Superhero, 6 Pack Lapadat.

CB: What do you enjoy away from training and competing?

RL: I don’t take much time off training, to be honest. I rarely take a week off straight. That’s a really bid deal for me to do. I love weight lifting that much. But on my down time I like to make music. I have had some of my songs make it onto the radio here in Canada. My journey has been a crazy one, so I’ve got a lot to talk about, lol, Here is a song I wrote while on the road filming my TV show.

CB: How are you going to remember your iron journey?

RL: Sports do not build character, they reveal it.

I’ve seen a lot of people come into the game talking one way, and ending up doing another. Say what you will about me. Say I should have lifted in this fed, in this division, at this time. Say I have gone Hollywood with all the media stuff I am into now, but no one can say I ever did anything to disgrace the sport or myself.

Never will anyone hear about me failing a drug test, or not holding myself appropriately in the media and press. This is the sport of Kings and Queens. My journey in the Iron Game will never come to a close, whether I’m competing or training the next generation, or working to promote the sport behind the scenes.

CB: Thanks for sharing your journey with all of us today. In closing is there anyone who you would like to thank?

RL: I’d like to thank you guys for the interview and all of my supporters for always helping push me forward. I may take to the lifting platform alone, but I always have an army behind me. Any one looking to know more about me and my latest projects can visit www.6packlapadat.com, follow me on twitter at @6packlapadat or find me on Facebook, 6 Pack Lapadat.

 Recommended Follow Up Resource:
4 Keys To Savage Strength

Jeremy Hoornstra Interview

As told to Critical Bench by Ben Tatar

Jeremy Hoornstra is one of the most dominant bench pressers of all time. One could say that Jeremy Hoornstra is to bench pressing as Usain Bolt is to sprinting.

Back in 1977 Mike MacDonald set a World Record in the bench press that nobody thought would be beaten, 522 @ 181, 562 @ 198, 582 @ 220, and 603.5 @ 242. Almost thirty years later Hoornstra came onto the scene and not only beat MacDonald’s record but crushed it.

Now Jeremy Hoornstra is breaking his own bench press World Records and has done so repeatedly! He just benched 661.4 at 242! I was fortunate enough to talk to Jeremy about what it’s like to be the great bench presser he is today.

CB: Jeremy tell us about breaking Mike MacDonald’s near 30 year bench press world record! Then tell us what it was like shattering your own world record by over 50lbs?

JH: Well, the 242 lb weight class was 603, held by Mike McDonald for 29 years. I broke that with 605 and then 615 in 2006. After that, I got injured, life got in the way it seemed but I got back on track. I started training with Josh Bryant and increased it to 617 in November. However, the last meet I did in April I benched 622, then 639, then ended with 661.4 (an even 300 kilos). I thought that was really cool because at one time that was the highest bench ever set by Bill Kazmaier, ten days before I was born.

*Editor’s note* Jeremy Hoornstra competes in the 242lbs weight class in the bench press and he not only increased his own bench press world record, but beat Bill Kazmaier’s World Record from the 275lbs weight class that lasted a total of 22 years! That just shows how crazy strong Jeremy’s bench press ability is. He not only dominates his own weight class, but he has beaten World Record Holders in heavier weight classes.

CB: Jeremy, what are your best lifts on the following exercises?

Dumbbell over head shoulder presses for reps – I’m not sure, but I know I can do the 150’s for around 50 reps for a few sets, but that’s cardio.

You make 150lbs over head shoulder presses cardio? (laughs) How many times can you rep 450lbs on the bench? – I haven’t gone for an all-out rep max, but somewhere in the vicinity of 18.
How much can you shrug? – My bar can fit eleven 45’s which is right at 1,035 and I’ve done sets of 8 with that but lately I’ve been hanging around the 800-850 range for 12-15 reps.

How much weight do you use when you do bent over rows? – I have done sets of 6 with 545, 585, etc. but have been doing strict, head supported or chest supported sets lately. Lats are huge in benching.

Your best incline bench press is – 635

Your best bench press in the gym is – 715

CB: Jeremy, on the bench press how many times can you rep 225, 315, and 405?

JH: I haven’t really repped a whole lot lately but I can say the most I remember repping out 225 was 71, 315 was 42, 405 was 24.

CB: What’s harder doing skull crushers with 315s for 10s or 100lbs dumbbell over head presses for 100 reps? I know you’ve done both.

JH: I’d say the 100 reps because that’s crazy endurance, I can muscle up the 315 for a few seconds of reps but 100 reps is insane.

CB: Jeremy, tell us about your diet and what supplements do you take? Do you eat clean or do you eat anything that doesn’t move?

JH: 99% of the time I eat clean. I eat chicken, potatoes, eggs, steaks, etc. I try to make sure I have no cheat meals the week before a show and that puts me right at my comp weight within a few days. I take MHP’s Up Your Mass, Tbombs, and Dark Rage also.

 

CB: Eating right is so important. Jeremy, What do you think are the 10 most important factors in increasing one’s bench press?

JH: Diet, sleep, listening to your body, staying balanced, going heavy, deloading when necessary, variety, secondary muscle work, technique, and setting a goal…then getting it.

CB: All of these things count folks! Jeremy, before you bench press a world record, what is going through your mind? Do you get deranged or have really intense thoughts or do you empty your mind? Do you like it when people hit you in the face or get in your face and scream?

JH: I try not to think a lot about anything, the less the better. I just focus on staying loose and ready to hit something big. I’m not the type that likes to scream, get slapped in the face, and then hit the weights. I just sit down, lay back and bench it, knowing that my training before the meet will ensure a good lift.

CB: Jeremy, noone thought Mike MacDonald’s records would be broken. They lasted for almost 30 years, until you came on the scene! Now you’re also out benching Bill Kazmaier, who weighed 320lbs, at 242lbs. That is amazing. How did you celebrate after setting the bench press world record once again?

JH: Honestly, we didn’t really do too much, I was already hitting that in the gym and knew that’s what I was going to be benching around. When I got home, my wife and the guys at the fire station cooked me a “congrats” dinner but other than that it was back to the normal routine. I’ll celebrate when I break Scott’s 715…that record was just a stepping stone.

CB: Well, good luck on your next big goal, very few people become the best bench presser in the world.


What is your advice for the following: the 225lbs bencher, 315lbs bencher, 405lbs bencher, and the 500+ bencher who wants to go extreme.. What really makes the difference between an average lifter and a top lifter?

JH: Well, for all of them, I’d say stick with it. As important as diet, training, the “next and newest exercise” can be, none of it factors in as much as consistency. Rome wasn’t built overnight. You have to stay with it when you feel great and strong and ready to tear it up but also when you just don’t feel like going in at all. That’s the difference between an average lifter and a top lifter.

CB: What are your future goals?

JH: Next goal I have set is I want 730 at 242.

CB: Jeremy, a lot of people criticize you for staying 242lbs and not gaining weight as they feel it might give you an edge. What are your thoughts?

JH: I get a lot of people saying “I wonder what he’d get if he gained a few lbs and went up a weight class or two”. In my opinion, all I’d get would be fat. I feel way better where I am and honestly feel that I will get 730. I’m getting close now.

CB: Do you do any type of periodization for your bench press routine? If you do, how does your training change from the start of a cycle to the finish? How long are they?

JH: Well, right now I’m done with my post show training which is a little more conditioning. I’m headed into pre-show training which is a lot more volume and weight, the reps start to diminish off. Josh Bryant writes my workouts out and have made huge gains in less than a year with him.

CB: Do you train hardcore every session? Give us more detail about how Josh is training you.

JH: Josh has me on a four day split, days off I do cardio usually while at work by pushing an ambulance across the parking lot. Three weeks are heavy, hardcore sessions, the fourth week is a deload.

CB: Sounds much like how Kennelly trained for a shirt record. Very interesting how two of the very best in different bench press venues have conjugate like periodization tactics. So far in your bench journey, what has been your favorite moment?

JH: My favorite moment was when I did the 661. I knew that I had hit just over 700 in the gym. Then injuries have always made it where I wasn’t really even close to that by the time the competitions came. However, this past show I was able to increase the record I set with 617 a few months prior to 622, then 639, and then ending at the 661. I felt pretty good about that…but I’m definitely not done with the 242 class yet.

CB: What motivates you to stick with it? Are you as motivated to stick with things other than bench pressing?

JH: Ben, I’ve always been very motivated to finish things I’ve started, almost to the point where it keeps me up at times during the night. For example, if I know I have to work on my house or truck, it will irritate me if I can’t do it and finish it right then. I’m not done with my record, I want it higher, I want the highest and will do what I need to, put in the time I need to, to finish that goal.

CB: Well, Jeremy what a bench press record breaking machine you have become! We can’t wait to see what you have in store for us next. In closing who would you like to thank?

I’d like to thank a few, first my family for their support, my wife and son. They’re behind me the whole time, even when I have to leave them to go to the gym, etc. The rest of my family, my workout partners for not only giving me a good lift, but at times coming in when they’ve already lifted just to give me a lift, Josh Bryant for the training program that has me not only on track but aiming at the future, and my Sponsors MHP and Monsta Clothing.

Increase Your Bench Press 50 lbs in 10 Weeks

7 Steps to a Bullet-Proof Mindset for Strength Training

Guest post by Andy Bolton of Deadlift Dynamite

1. Realize that strength training is a violent pursuit

You may have never thought about strength training as something violent, but it is.  Think about it: when you squat, you put a weight on your back that could potentially cripple you if it all goes wrong. When you bench, you lift a bar above your body that if dropped on your neck will probably kill you.

And the deadlift encourages you to lift weights from the floor that could break your back if you don’t have the correct form and know how to stay tight.

Indeed, if you don’t get a buzz from watching MMA, boxing, rugby, American football or some other “violent” sport, you are probably not cut out for serious strength training.  However, if you do get a kick out of watching those sports and have a passion for getting stronger, you need to develop…

2. Aggression

If you want to dominate the kind of weights that the average lifters can’t even hope to lift, you have to be aggressive.

When you are in the hole on the squat, with your max on your back, you have to drive that bar back to the start position like your life depends on it.

The same goes for the bench press: when the bar touches your chest, you have to crush it with serious aggression and drive it back to the start position.

And as for the deadlift, I don’t think any other lift is so dependent on being in the right state of mind. Watch my world record deadlifts and you will see my training partner slap my face beforehand for several minutes.  As Dave “Bulldog” Beattie does this I am allowing my aggression to build. When the time comes I push Dave out of the way (not easy to do given that he’s 300lbs) and then I unleash hell on the bar.

That’s the kind of attitude all the best guys have.  If you want to see aggression, watch me lift, watch Captain Kirk lift, watch Chuck Vogelphol lift, watch my training partner Brian Reynolds lift—all great lifters, all very aggressive.  You can get ok strength without aggression, but if you want to be super strong, you have to be an animal.

With that said, you also need…

3. Clarity

The ability to think clearly and see things as they are is of vital importance to the strength athlete.  Only when you think clearly will you be able to objectively work out your weaknesses and address them accordingly.

Only when you think clearly will you know when to push and when to hold back, when to get psyched up before a lift and when to just be aggressive when you are actually under the bar.  Only when you think clearly will you be able to stay injury free and ensure your own longevity.  Clarity is essential for success. Most people are unclear and unsuccessful. There is a pattern right there.

4. Visualization

Visualization is a simple yet highly powerful mental skill that all successful people have.  Science has proven that if you think about something over and over again and with enough intensity, your brain can’t actually tell the difference between whether or not you have actually done what you are thinking about or just imagined it.

So… the trick is to visualize yourself going for and SUCCEEDING with personal bests over and over again before you actually attempt them.  I “saw myself” lift 1,008lbs thousands of times before I actually pulled it for real.  When the time came to do it in competition, I actually felt like it was nothing new.  Embrace visualization and use it to help you get stronger.

At the same time…

5. Avoid excess negativity

The reason why I say to avoid excess negativity and not just to avoid negativity is because we all have negative thoughts and we always will have.  The difference is that some people dwell on negative thoughts and allow them to sabotage their success, while others quickly eliminate them and/or work out if there is a hidden message.

In relation to lifting, the biggest example of negativity is people who see themselves missing personal bests.  Never, ever do this and if you catch yourself doing this, stop it straight away and imagine yourself succeeding 10 times.  In order to ‘catch’ negative thoughts before they get out of hand, you must have…

6. Focus

Tony Robbins says that most people live their lives like a leaf on a river. In other words—they go where the river takes them, with no real control over where they are going.  If you want control over your life and your strength, you must be like the speed boat on the river; able to pick its course and do what it wants—instead of being dictated to by your surroundings and circumstances… you must take control and make things happen.

When you are focused, you will naturally take control and spend your time more wisely.  Right now, do a quick exercise that will get you focused…

• Take out a sheet of paper
• Write down three 30 day goals
• Write down three 3 month goals
• Write down three 12 month goals
• Write down a big, outrageous 3 to 5 year goal

Read these goals every day and tick them off as you do achieve them.  Finally, you must be:

7. Flexible

Bruce Lee talks about flowing like water.  You must be the same. No matter how well you plan, things will always need to be tweaked and altered along the way. That goes for strength training and everything you do in life.
Do not be stubborn, be flexible.  If something’s not working, be man enough to change it.

Click to Increase Your Bench Press, Squat & Deadlift Fast

 

Savage Strength Interview With Mike Gillette

Howdy partners. I did this sweet interview with former swat commander and executive bodyguard Mike Gillette who is the creator of an extremely kick-ass program called the Savage Strength Training System. Are you prepared to be entercated? That’s right you get entertained and educated at the same time…..boom! I said it. Enjoy.

Me:  In your experience are strength and size of a muscle correlated?

MG: Research suggests that a larger cross-section of muscle tissue will yield greater contractile potential than a smaller cross-section of muscle tissue. But if this was all there was to the strength equation, then bodybuilders would also dominate the realm of strength sports. But they don’t. The chief strength variable that almost everyone overlooks is the Central Nervous System. Often-times a smaller but more neurologically-efficient athlete can outlift a larger one.

Me:  Why do you feel it’s more important to train for strength than it is for looks?

MG: Because I need a body that PERFORMS. After having had so many big, impressively-muscled guys come up to me and say “What you do is amazing…” , it becomes apparent that deep down, what everyone really respects is CAPABILITY. Meaning what you can DO rather than just how you LOOK. I am 49 years old and I am still out on the road. And whether it’s for bodyguard work or a presentation of mind-body feats, my body has to be able to do WHAT I want it to WHEN I want it to.

Me:  What would you say to someone that is intimidated by the Savage Strength program and claims to be too old, or has a bad back or just isn’t ready for something like this yet?

MG: I would say “Just try it out…” While it’s true that there are some very tough exercises taught in the program, I specifically included some easier ones too. And that’s because (as long as you pay attention to the detailed instruction) this program can be for ANYBODY. You just have to work within your present level of capabilities. You have to be smart about it. The program is self-calibrating. No matter how strong you are, you can adjust the intensity level by manipulating various training parameters which are explained in detail in the program manual.

Me:  What are the advantages of becoming stronger and more functional?

MG: Simple… in a physical context  you can do what you want You learn how to become the master of your body and not the other way around. Get strong and gain the strength to live the life you want… the life you’ve always wanted.

Me:  Briefly differentiate between muscular endurance vs. muscular strength.

MG: Endurance refers to output capacity sustained over a period of time. The longer the time-frame, the lower the intensity level. Strength refers to MAXIMUM output capacity. In my world, endurance is a quality I associate with “wellness” or “health”, strength is a quality I associate with “taking action” or “saving lives”. Strength give you on-demand usefulness to the world around you.

Me:  Mike, as former SWAT Commander was there ever a time that your strength training proved to be an asset?

MG: Too many to possibly count. For every meth-lab door kicked, every street thug I ever fought with, every suicidal person I wrestled a weapon away from and for every frightened child who took my hand and needed to know that everything was going to be okay… each one of those people needed to feel all my strength… for different reasons.  And for all of them, it was my DUTY to become as strong as I could be.

Me:  On page 28 of the Savage Strength manifesto you said that when you were in your early 40s, your body felt like it was training all the time, even when you weren’t.  What did you mean by that?

MG: Primarily it was the time I had left law enforcement and I was working in the private sector running some very large training projects. Lots of deadlines and lots of travel. My training had unfortunately become routine. So routine in fact, I was sometimes losing track as to whether or not I was even doing it. I had lost some of the imperative to train, I had lost that edge. This was also around the time that certain overuse-related injuries had started to crop up.

Me:  Do mentally tough people get stronger than those who aren’t?

MG: They absolutely do. Strength training is hard work. And strength training performed at the ragged edge of your own capabilities is even harder. It is the ability to develop mental toughness that separates the STRONG from the merely “fit”. You have to be able to break barriers to achieve something meaningful. And if you aggressively seek opportunities to REALLY break through to whatever your own “next level” is, you will likely get a glimpse of your best self.

Me:  Tell us something most people don’t know about Mike Gillette.

MG: Between the scary resume, the bending and the breaking and the mind-power feats I do, some people have a hard time approaching me. It’s interesting that kids have no problem coming up and asking me for pictures or an autograph or just to talk. But a lot of adults seem uncomfortable making that same overture. So, while I understand that a lot of what I do strikes most people as “unusual”, it’s not unusual to me. This is simply who I am and what I do. And it is vitally important to me to share what I do and the things I have been so fortunate to learn… all these unconventional techniques, methods and teachings with others.

Me:  In closing, why does the world need more strong men?

MG: Strong men, by their very presence, make their little corner of the world “better”. What I mean by that is they make things safer, more stable, more sensible, more… BETTER. Discipline of BODY, Discipline of MIND, Self-Control… the world is always a better place when more men possess these qualities.

Me:  Thanks for your time.

MG:  My pleasure.  Check out the article below to get 4-keys to savage strength.

CLICK HERE NOW

Warrior Training & Lean Hybrid Muscle Building

November 4, 2009 by  
Filed under Life, Recent Posts, Training, Workout Motivation

westy3Like many of you I played sports in high school. I walked on the football team in college and played four years of football. Keeping my body lean and strong during that period of my life wasn’t a problem. After all we had practice, mandatory weight lifting sessions, morning running and a very positive environment for keeping the body in an overall anabolic state.

As the post-college years kept passing by, I found myself being less and less active. Don’t get me wrong I found a new passion and started testing my merit in amateur powerlifting over the past few years and it has kept me really motivated and I do love the competition. But……something is missing. I’ve gotten a lot stronger but I also gained over 25 lbs! It’s kind of embarrassing actually. Here I am preaching on the Internet and trying to help others stay fit and I go right ahead and pack on some un-needed pounds.

What does all this have to do with the Warrior Physique Mike? I’m glad you asked, let me explain. I have lot of relatives that live in Sweden and I’ve always been interested in Viking History. As I was reading a book of mine called, “The Long Ships” I realized the Vikings didn’t have to workout in gyms, their lives and their battles were workouts enough. Fortunately I don’t have to engage in battle which is good considering I get winded from playing a pickup game of basketball! It was starting to get obvious that I’d probably make a lousy Viking and was nowhere close to the top shape I was in during college.

Several months ago I hooked up with my now good friend Elliottt Hulse who is the owner of a warehouse gym in my area called Strength Camp. Elliott is pro strongman and I started watching some of the workouts he was putting his clients through. This wasn’t like anything I had really seen before. They weren’t using your typical gym equipment. They were carrying odd objects, loading sandbags, dragging sleds and doing all kinds of exercises that looked like half resistance training and half cardio training.

I told Elliott I wanted to try some of the “Warrior Training” methods. He grinned and wanted to know what I meant by that and I told him, that the guys from his camp train like guys from my Viking book. It’s no surprise Elliott and I hit it off right away and started doing some workouts together.

We’d combine my strength building exercises with his max effort resistance cardio techniques to come up with some pretty sick training sessions. The fat has been melting off and I’m still getting stronger so I think it’s safe to say we’re on the brink of discovering something pretty special.

Check out my results so far in only the first 8-weeks!

westy
Ya I know I look like an idiot in the pic to the left. They made me put that outfit on when I got my bodyfat tested in the Bod Pod. The results came in at a shocking 27%! Ouch. That pic coupled with that stat really put a fire under me to get crankin.

If you think this is as remotely cool as I do than go check out this free video series we put together called, “The Art Of Rapid Transformation“. We’ve already released video 1 and 2. Video 3 is coming out tomorrow. You can see them all together on the page. There are over 1000 comments. Mostly good, a few bad apples, so head over and join the battle!

You should check this out. I think you’ll really like it.

http://www.leanhybridmuscle.com/musclevideos.html

Redskins DE Phillip Daniels Opens Monster Garage Gym

phillip2Friday night is a big night for me, there’s a lot on the line. Actually I’m not leaving the house but I made a bet with my wife. She’s a huge Patriots fan and I’m a hardcore Redskins fan. It’s just preseason but our teams face each other this Friday.

The veterans don’t have a lot at stake, but as for me, well if the Pats win I’ll never hear the end of it.

One my favorite players is the NFL is Phillip Daniels who is a DE with the Washington Redskins going into his 14th season.

This guy is an Ox! Other than the fact that he slams QBs to the ground and is one of the best run-stuffers in the League, Phil is also an offseason Powerlifter.

I got him on the line to talk with us about a hardcore gym that he just opened up.

It’s called Monster Gargage Gym located in IL and he opened it with co-owner and 2 time WPC powerlifting champ Eric Maroscher.

As a skins fan, fellow powerlifter and the fact that I train at a barbell club and warehouse gym myself I definitely want to help get the word out about this new facility.

phillipdanielsgym

Visit MonsterGarageGym.com

Some of today’s fitness centers just make me sick, so I’m happy every time I hear about one of these underground barbell clubs opening up.

Enjoy the interview….Phil is a real down to Earth guy and you’re gonna love his energy.

Go Skins!

Mike Westerdal
(Fan since the 5th grade)

P.S. Why am I Skins fan when I live in Tampa Bay? Because I was born in raised in northern VA and because I like watching them destroy the Bucs! That’s right, I said it!

Training footage from Monster Garage Gym, featuring members of the Maroscher Powerlifting Team and NFL Washington Redskins Defensive End, Phillip Daniels

 
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