Monthly Archives: May 2015

Squat Thursday: In the Balance

THIS might have been my second last squat session before CAPO states, or it might have been my last. I had intended to squat 250 tonight, but with the way 230 felt I sought advice from Tim, who suggested I do 240 instead. That felt like a grind, and while it wasn’t slow enough to suggest going heavier would have been out of the question, it wasn’t happening after that.

I still want a comfortable 250 on the day. I still think it’s achievable. I may work up to it, or I may have to open with it and leave it there. How my knees are going to behave is something I cannot anticipate. Low volume, fortnightly squatting is proving to work for me steadily, and who knows? If everything’s feeling good enough, I might try for all 3 attempts. But I will not jeopardise my deadlift to do this.

bar kgs x 8
80 kgs x 5
130 kgs x 3
180 kgs x 3
210 kgs x 1
230 kgs x 1
240 kgs x 1

Press Wednesday: Another PR Busted

THIS WHOLE taking a week off a month out from the comp hasn’t appeared to affect my pressing. Or my deads, for that matter. Tomorrow night I will assess my squatLoggening. But tonight was a new record by either 2.5 or 5 kilograms… I don’t care enough about bench to be bothered looking this up. I may have mentioned this before; coming from an SM background I find the lift kinda unimportant. It’s fun to train right now, as my relative inexperience with it makes for some nice progression. And that’s good, too. It will be more important when it’s 200 plus though. Till then I just feel meh about the event itself. It’s a good breather between squats and deads, at least.

My pause is getting longer, and my money set was pretty solid. Not fast, but no sticking point, I’m told. I am confident of 180 on the day. Maybe more.

Bench press:
20 kgs x 8
70 kgs x 5
110 kgs x 4
140 kgs x 2
170 kgs x 1
177.5 kgs x 1 PR

45 Incline press:
60 kgs x 5
90 kgs x 3
110 kgs x 3
130 kgs x 7 PR

20 kgs x 2s x 20r

Pull Monday: Another Easy 320

I HAD to start this week – my second last training week – on a high note. So I did. Switching to deadlifts and working up to my equal best pull of 320 kilograms was nice and easy. Easy to load, easy to lift… 270 came up like it was 170, so I moved straight to six reds.

Everything else may go to hell on the day. But I am, at least, very confident of a new PR at CAPO states.

70 kgs x 8
120 kgs x 5
170 kgs x 3
220 kgs x 2
270 kgs x 1
320 kgs x 1 equal best

Bent-over BB rows (underhand):
120 kgs x 10 TPR
140 kgs x 8

DB forward raises:
12.5 kgs x 10
15 kgs x 10
17.5 kgs x 10

Pull Thursday: a Little Bit Heavier

IMPATIENT for the reds to accumulate and not bothered with micro-loading, tonight I slapped the competition spin-locks on the texas bar and got on with it.

With four weeks left in my program, it did look like this:
May 14th: 302.5 kgs x 1
May 21st: 310 kgs x 1
May 28th: 317.5 kgs x 1
June 4th: 300 kgs x 1
…and then a week’s rest.

After tonight’s efforts, it’s been reviewed just a bit. Again, I could have done reps of this weight… a triple, comfortably, I’d say. But that’s not the game.

75 kgs x 8
125 kgs x 5
175 kgs x 3
225 kgs x 2 double overhand, no belt – another TPR for grip strength
255 kgs x 1
285 kgs x 1
305 kgs x 1

Squat Monday: A Modest New PR

SATURDAY’S strongman clinic was small but on-point; the group performed four events including dumbbell clean-press (which a couple of them have taken to), axle clean-press, axle deadlift and farmers walk. I was pretty conservative with my own work, the only thing worth mentioning was a belt-less 20 meter farmers walk with 130 p/hand. Far from my best, but it was pretty quick and left my knees without complaint. Looking forward to another, heavier run this weekend coming.

Tonight I decided to take the old axle for a spin, and walked out 245. Five kilograms off what will be my opening (and likely my only) squat at CAPO states. It was nice and deep, though I didn’t sink so low as to pause, like I did last time, and I completed it slowly. It was not fantastic, but I’ll take it.

Squats x/axle:Axle Squat 1 zoom
bar x 8
75 kgs x 5
125 kgs x 5
175 kgs x 5
205 kgs x 3
225 kgs x 1
245 kgs x 1 PR

Pull Thursday: Woot

A GOOD NIGHT which started with a belt adjustment and culminated in a legit new personal record. I was also a little surprised; my belt is one notch smaller now, but my body weight is back up (and hopefully staying) around 135 kilos. Leaner, and evideloaded lifting pull copyntly stronger. Very happy about this.

My program actually called for a double of 295. But everything was feeling good, so I tripled it – and pretty comfortably, too. I could have done two more reps… maybe more. But that would have jeopardised the rest of my program.

In fact, there were some positive improvements across the board tonight. After my money set I felt like I strained my right pec a little, but that was the only complaint. My usual post-training nerve twinge as I climbed out of the car didn’t even make an appearance.

Top night.I live for this shit.

70 kgs x 5
120 kgs x 5
170 kgs x 3
220 kgs x 2 double overhand, no belt – TPR for grip strength
250 kgs x 1
275 kgs x 1
295 kgs x 3 PR

Bent-over BB rows (underhand):
110 kgs x 8
130 kgs x 8
140 kgs x 8 TPR

DB forward raises:
12.5 kgs x 10
15 kgs x 10

Press Wednesday: And Back to Good

THANKFULLY tonight’s session was pain free and actually pretty strong, for me. In light of my crappy benching last week my coach advised I just do paused singles from here on out. I’ll get whatever I need checked out properly post CAPO states. Providing everything holds together like it did tonight, I’m pretty confident of 175 or 180 on the day.

And at this point I’m pretty certain skull crushers are kryptonite for my elbows. I was enjoying them for a while there, but now they just aggravate shit. Dropping them.

The gym has recently acquired new, heavier dumbbells, so the smaller ones have been shuffled around on the DB rack to make room for them. I picked up the 17.5 pair thinking they were 10s and finished the set before checking them. Thought they felt heavy. And that made my second set a limb-deadening personal record. A PR in pinwheelz. Woot.

Deadlifts tomorrow night. Now that’s woot.

Bench press (paused):
20 kgs x 8
70 kgs x 5
100 kgs x 3
140 kgs x 3
160 kgs x 2
170 kgs x 1

60 kgs x 5

45 Incline press:
60 kgs x 5
90 kgs x 5
110 kgs x 5
130 kgs x 3

17.5 kgs x 20
22.5 kgs x 20 PR

PTC Strongman, Perth: The First Ever Novice Comp


the competitors 1

THIS ENTRY comes late. I have not had much opportunity to sit and think at length on what has transpired in the last week. But now that it’s Saturday night, I’m resting my aching knees and reflecting on what has been a sub-par few days of training for me, I figured it was high time I got this much down.

The competition was a complete success… well surpassing what I had hoped for. There was a certain gravity to the occasion. For me, for PTC Perth, and for strongman in general. This foray into strongman comps and clinics is not simply further evidence of growth in the sport; it is the first time a national franchise strength sports gym (a singularity in and of itself) has hosted strongman competitions across Australia. I’m very excited to be a part of it.

Performance Training Centre, Perth’s first ever strongman novice comp had eighteen competitors across four divisions. Four events, all run and won between 10AM and 1PM. Now that may not seem like anything to a layperson, but in my years of competing it’s very very rare for a four event comp with that many competitors to take anything less than five hours. Some can run past nightfall. For this comp, the crowd was engaged for the duration and grew in number as the events rolled out.

If I’m being honest, the day of the competition wasthe crowd 1 exhausting for me. I was awake from 5AM, not coz I needed that kind of prep time but simply due to anxiety. I was doing what I usually do and going over the worst possible scenarios in my head so I would be prepared if they happened on the day. But no contrived disasters eventuated. The camaraderie was fantastic, the assistants (the Rucci brothers, Ando, Anthony and Neil) were integral. The next one will be even better. What hiccups there were, were minor, and that ultimately can be chalked up to having no one else on hand with experience in strongman competitions. I was extremely proud to witness my trainees assisting the other competitors and each other with loading, strapping, et cetera – and always ready with plenty of vocal encouragement. Every one of my people surpassed their own expectations for each event… a slew of personal victories I got to witness.

A whole lot of great pics were taken by the Ruccis on the day, which can be found on the PTC Perth Facebook page or by clicking here. And I was also lucky enough to recruit the services of professional photographer, Karl Pearce. Karl was recommended to me in 2012, when I was asked to provide pro shots for Planet Hercules Aussie Power’s athletes page. He prefers to shoot sports, and has a selection of black and whites of the event available here, with a full hi-res collection coming soon!