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Tom Mutaffis
05-25-2010, 04:38 AM
Introduction:
My background includes more than 10 years of weight training as well as four years as a competitive strongman. Prior to getting involved with strongman I typically followed a 'powerbuilder' training program; lifting heavy weights while working to build as much muscle as possible. Recently much of my focus in training has been on event work specific to strongman, and my gym training has been neglected. I have decided to change things up a bit and focus more on gym work for the next few weeks.

The reason that I picked this program (Hypertrophy Cluster Training / HCT-12) is that it is offers a good balance between heavy lifting, conditioning, and volume. This should allow for maximum hypertrophy while also improving athletic performance (strength/power/cardio). The fact that the weights are typically in the 80% range will also allow my CNS and connective tissue some time to recover.

Specific Program:
I will be following 'Option One' which is a Monday/Wednesday/Friday template, alternating between Upper Body and Lower Body workouts. On the weekends I will do some high intensity low volume strongman event work as well as some conditioning.

About Me:
Over the past four years I have earned more than 20 podium appearances in strongman competitions including a win at North American Strongman Nationals. Some of my recent PR's include a 500 lbs front squat, 700 lbs deadlift, and 375 lbs overhead press - all of which were performed at a bodyweight around 235 lbs.

Tom Mutaffis
05-25-2010, 04:39 AM
Monday 5/24/2010
First day of HCT-12; I trained at Lifestyle Fitness and was excited to get started on the new program. Bodyweight has been steady around 240 lbs.

Warmup:
- Elliptical for 4 Minutes
- Medicine Ball Drills
- Light Cable Work

Wide Grip Chins:
BW x 3 x 3
BW + 25 lbs x 3
BW + 45 lbs x 3
BW + 70 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Pendlay Rows:
305 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Incline Barbell Press:
315 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Standing Military Press:
225 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Close Grip Bench Press:
300 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

This was a great workout! I had about 300g of protein yesterday and am going to make sure to keep my calorie/protein intake up this week so that I can maximize my recovery and keep up the intensity in the gym.

J.C.
05-25-2010, 05:06 AM
Wow. Its great to see the more advanced guys using this program as well. This will be fun to watch.

Kiff
05-25-2010, 06:00 AM
Monday 5/24/2010
I had about 300g of protein yesterday.

Just the two chickens then mate!

Good luck with it mate its worked really well for myself and i dare say a few other people already!

Nice PR's btw.

Off Road
05-25-2010, 06:55 AM
Too cool. It's going to be fun watching somebody with your strength and experience doing HCT-12. Welcome aboard Tom.

ELmx479
05-25-2010, 07:34 PM
Too cool. It's going to be fun watching somebody with your strength and experience doing HCT-12. Welcome aboard Tom.

I agree, looking forward to some big numbers in this journal.

Joe Black
05-27-2010, 01:21 AM
Way to go on the first workout - BW + 70 lbs for Chins, NICE!

Looking forward to following...

Tom Mutaffis
05-27-2010, 06:32 AM
Wow. Its great to see the more advanced guys using this program as well. This will be fun to watch.

I appreciate you following along.


Just the two chickens then mate!

Not sure what this means, but thank you for checking out my journal.


Too cool. It's going to be fun watching somebody with your strength and experience doing HCT-12. Welcome aboard Tom.

I am looking forward to the program as well, should be fun.


I agree, looking forward to some big numbers in this journal.

Thank you.


Way to go on the first workout - BW + 70 lbs for Chins, NICE!

Looking forward to following...

Thanks Daniel!

Tom Mutaffis
05-27-2010, 06:37 AM
5/26/2010
My knee was a bit sore so I decided to Back Squat instead of Front Squat tonight, but that also threw off the program a bit because it is hard for me to do any type of pulling after heavy squats. My diet has been mostly on track, just trying to ramp up protein intake.

Warmup:
Elliptical for 5 minutes, dynamic warmup, light squats.

Back Squat:
475 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2, 405 lbs x 4

Rack Pulls:
Worked up to 545 lbs x 1 from 18", shut it down because my back was a little tight.

Calf Raises:
255 lbs x 5 reps x 5 sets
135 lbs x 10 reps x 5 sets

Alternating DB Curls:
70 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2, 35 lbs x 6

Pretty good session tonight considering that I was not feeling great going in. The squat is a PR and I might have actually done (7) reps because I lost count. For my next lower body workout I will probably go with different exercises or scale back the first set of the squats so that I can complete the series and keep something in the tank for deadlifts.

Off Road
05-27-2010, 06:42 AM
Very strong back squats Tom. It gives all of us "natural" lifters hope.
For some reason I knew you'd want to do front squats and rack pulls. Maybe next time.

ThomasG
05-27-2010, 08:54 AM
Wow, this is awesome Tom doing hct-12! I look forward to your progress.

Tom Mutaffis
05-28-2010, 08:21 PM
Very strong back squats Tom. It gives all of us "natural" lifters hope.
For some reason I knew you'd want to do front squats and rack pulls. Maybe next time.

I think that those are the two movements that I am going to stick with from here on out. They complement each other well since front squats seem to help my deadlift off the floor.


Wow, this is awesome Tom doing hct-12! I look forward to your progress.

Thank you, I appreciate you following along.

Tom Mutaffis
05-29-2010, 05:34 AM
5/28/2010
Was pretty exhausted going into todays workout. My supplements arrived this afternoon though and I had a chance to try out the reformulated Results from AtLarge, I really like the new flavor and the drinkability.

Wide Grip Chins:
BW x 3 reps x 5 sets
BW + 45 lbs x 3
BW + 70 lbs x 6, BW x 2,2,2

Pendlay Rows:
285 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Incline Bench Press:
315 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Standing Military Press:
230 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Close Grip Bench Press:
285 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Pretty good session; going to focus on catching up on my diet/rest this weekend.

Biomedhawk
05-29-2010, 11:22 AM
Those are some extremely impressive numbers. I'm definitely going to keeping up with this log. Nice work!

tomsids
05-29-2010, 12:12 PM
Welcome to the revolution, Tom! I'm pumped to watch your progress with this.

TB

Tom Mutaffis
05-30-2010, 06:08 PM
Those are some extremely impressive numbers. I'm definitely going to keeping up with this log. Nice work!

Thank you.


Welcome to the revolution, Tom! I'm pumped to watch your progress with this.

TB

I appreciate you following along.

Tom Mutaffis
05-30-2010, 06:09 PM
5/30/3010
Today was just a quick strongman accessory workout; trained with a few friends down in South Carolina.

Thick Handle Farmers Pick & Hold:
285 lbs / hand x 4 Sets

One-Arm Barbell Snatch:
Worked up to 165 lbs x 1, new PR.

Sled Drag:
4 plates x 80 feet x 3 sets
4 plates + 7 year old child x 80 feet x 1 set
*The sled drags were done up a slight incline, speed work.

That was it for today.

StLRPh
05-30-2010, 06:33 PM
Congrats on the PR and I'm sure the kiddo loved the ride :)

Tom Mutaffis
05-31-2010, 12:43 PM
Congrats on the PR and I'm sure the kiddo loved the ride :)

Thank you.

It was my friend's son and he was racing all of us while we were doing sled drags, good way to stay motivated and make the event a bit more fun. He decided to jump on the sled for the last run.

Off Road
05-31-2010, 12:46 PM
My kids usually get in the way when I'm pulling the sled. Next time I'm going to throw them on the sled :)

Tom Mutaffis
05-31-2010, 12:51 PM
5/31/2010
Trained at Lifestyle Fitness today; decided to change my lower body exercises over to Front Squats and Rack Pulls which is what I had intended to do last week.

Warmup:
- Elliptical for 5 1/2 minutes
- Dynamic Warmup
- Light Front Squats

Front Squats:
380 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

18" Deadlift: (Rack Pulls)
570 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Hammer Linear Hack Squat Calf Raises:
3 plates / side x 10 reps x 5 sets

Alternating DB Curls:
65's x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

My wrist is still a little sore so I did the Front Squats with a strap wrapped around the bar instead of using the clean grip. Have been drinking an extra (2) scoop Nitrean shake at night to help with recovery.

Tom Mutaffis
05-31-2010, 01:50 PM
My kids usually get in the way when I'm pulling the sled. Next time I'm going to throw them on the sled :)

It is easier than loading plates, plus you'll have your kids right there to cheer you on.

Bosch232
05-31-2010, 09:44 PM
Tom,

Are there specific upcoming events that you have in mind?
(I don't follow strongman comps all that close because of limited coverage, but I sure could start if I knew where to look online.)

Tom Mutaffis
06-02-2010, 08:35 AM
Tom,
Are there specific upcoming events that you have in mind?
(I don't follow strongman comps all that close because of limited coverage, but I sure could start if I knew where to look online.)

My next contest will likely be toward the end of July.

The majority of strongman contests here are run through North American Strongman and their website is www.nastrongmaninc.com. If you are looking for additional information on the sport of strongman, upcoming events, and competitor training journals then I would recommend the Marunde site (www.marunde-muscle.com/forum).

I do not know of a whole lot going on in Nebraska other than NAHA (North American Highlander Association) Nationals which are set for July 31st in Omaha, NE. (http://www.nahighlander.com/)

Tom Mutaffis
06-02-2010, 09:39 AM
6/1/2010
No training today, but I did want to give an update on my diet since I have been making a concious effort to increase protein intake.

Here is what my diet and supplements looked like for Tuesday:

Diet Summary:

Breakfast / (2) Whole Grain Blueberry Waffles, (2) Scoops Nitrean, Results (New Formula).
Mid-Morning / Natural Peanut Butter & Banana Sandwich on Wheat Bread
Lunch / 12 oz Lean Ground Beef with Brown Rice & Tomato Sauce.
Early Afternoon / Protein Bar, 3g Fish Oil, (2) bottles of water
Mid Afternoon / (2) Scoops Nitrean and some pineapple wedges
Dinner / 8 oz Lean Ground Beef with Brown Rice.
After Dinner Snack / (2) Scoops Nitrean mixed with water and 1/2 cup skim milk.
Midnight Snack / Half of a Novus Bar


Daily Total: About 4,000 calories, 350g protein.

ThomasG
06-02-2010, 09:57 AM
Is that maintenance cals?

Tom Mutaffis
06-02-2010, 10:25 PM
Is that maintenance cals?

It is hard for me to get an accurate estimate for maintenance calories (high BMI), but I would say that I am probably in the 3,400 - 3,800 range for maintenance. My plan is to improve conditioning and body composition while dropping 5-10 lbs for some upcoming contests.

Tom Mutaffis
06-02-2010, 10:26 PM
6/2/2010
Today was a long day in the office, ended up spending about 11 hours at work. This caused me to miss dinner and I didn't have my usual pre workout drink... so all in all I was not setting myself up for great training.

There was a pull-up contest on another forum so I decided to give that a try as a warmup.

Wide Grip Chins:
BW x 20 reps (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5H36kGYH9g)
BW + 45 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Pendlay Rows:
325 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2 (PR)

Incline Bench Press:
320 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Standing Military Press:
225 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Close Grip Bench Press:
290 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

None of these sets were to failure although the Pendlay Rows and Standing Press were fairly tough.

Off Road
06-03-2010, 12:19 AM
Holy cr@p Tom, 20 reps on the pull ups, and then a PR on the rows. You better skip dinner more often :)

Tom Mutaffis
06-03-2010, 07:58 AM
Holy cr@p Tom, 20 reps on the pull ups, and then a PR on the rows. You better skip dinner more often :)

Thank you. The guy next to me in the video was pretty funny, he was watching me and when I finished he said something like "I wasn't expecting that".

I made up for skipping dinner with a pretty solid PWO shake and meal. Had (2) scoops of Opticen and (2) scoops of Nitrean when I got home, and then after I let that digest for a while I had a big bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios with Skim Milk and (1) scoop of Nitrean mixed with Skim Milk.

detroiter
06-03-2010, 09:11 AM
Thank you. The guy next to me in the video was pretty funny, he was watching me and when I finished he said something like "I wasn't expecting that".

Haha, that guy had me crackin up. Nice job, Tom.

J.C.
06-03-2010, 11:37 AM
Ha yeah, he looked more and more surprised with each rep.

244lbs! You're a big guy Tom.

Astreocclu
06-04-2010, 05:26 PM
Pretty crazy on those pullups tom, damn!. at im around 244 myself and can barely get one. I remeber awhile ago you said you were gonna cut down to 220ish, you still looking into that?

Tom Mutaffis
06-05-2010, 07:01 AM
Haha, that guy had me crackin up. Nice job, Tom.

Thank you.


Ha yeah, he looked more and more surprised with each rep.

244lbs! You're a big guy Tom.

That was a peak weight for me, today I was around 240 lbs and I plan to drop down a bit. This is part of the reason why I have increased gym training frequency and jumped on HCT-12.


Pretty crazy on those pullups tom, damn!. at im around 244 myself and can barely get one. I remeber awhile ago you said you were gonna cut down to 220ish, you still looking into that?

I was a bit surprised myself since I have not been doing a lot of chins.

Right now I would say that my bodyweight has been steady in the 235-240 lbs range, that day I was just heavy because I had a lot of food/water. Have made some dietary and training adjustments and will probably stay around 230 lbs for a bit - there is a very heavy contest coming up and I don't want to give up a lot of bodyweight to other competitors.

Tom Mutaffis
06-05-2010, 07:16 AM
6/4/2010
Tried another new pre-workout drink today, might just have to stick with some of the ones that I have used in the past. I also did not bring my OLY shoes to the gym so ended up front squatting in my socks.

Front Squat:
390 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Rack Pulls: (from knees)
585 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Hack Squat Calf Raises:
3 Plates / Side x 10 x 5 sets

Alternating DB Curls:
70 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2, 35 lbs x 6

I am looking forward to the extra day of rest before training lower body again.

Off Road
06-05-2010, 07:40 AM
Nice session Tom. I think my new goal is to have my Back Squat keep up with your Front Squat :)

Tom Mutaffis
06-05-2010, 03:36 PM
6/5/2010
Trained up at Elite in Hunstersville; it was about 90 degrees outside and wanted to do a quick strongman conditioning day.

Tire Flip:
850 lbs x 2, 4, 6
850 lbs x 8 in 24 seconds (PR)
850 lbs x 6 in 20 seconds, one-motion w/o knee.

Tire Drag:
350 lbs x 70 feet x 3 sets - good speed.

Good workout, I have some video of the tire that I may post up tomorrow.

texron
06-05-2010, 05:08 PM
6/5/2010
Trained up at Elite in Hunstersville; it was about 90 degrees outside and wanted to do a quick strongman conditioning day.

Tire Flip:
850 lbs x 2, 4, 6
850 lbs x 8 in 24 seconds (PR)
850 lbs x 6 in 20 seconds, one-motion w/o knee.

Tire Drag:
350 lbs x 70 feet x 3 sets - good speed.

Good workout, I have some video of the tire that I may post up tomorrow.

Nice, I'd like to see the video. I'm still in search of a tire.

Tom Mutaffis
06-06-2010, 06:37 PM
Nice, I'd like to see the video. I'm still in search of a tire.

Here is a video of the last set of tire flip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPRbjTMHgxU

jPRbjTMHgxU

Tom Mutaffis
06-06-2010, 06:43 PM
6/6/2010
Another quick strongman training day up at Elite in Huntersville. When I arrived my training partner had already done Farmers and so I just did some Yoke.

Yoke Race:
480 lbs x 50 feet
570 lbs x 50 feet
680 lbs x 30 feet
810 lbs x 70 feet - PR!

Glute-Ham Raise:
50 lbs x 10 x 3 sets

That was it for today, helped out a couple of the powerlifters who were training afterward.

Tom Mutaffis
06-09-2010, 06:43 AM
6/8/2010
I decided to take an additional recovery day on Monday so my training was pushed to Tuesday. Bodyweight has been steady and I have been trying to stay focused on increasing protein while sticking to my diet.

Weighted Pullups:
BW x 1,2,3,2,1
BW + 25 lbs x 2, BW + 45 lbs x 2, BW + 70 lbs x 1
BW + 100 lbs x 5 (PR), Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sElII0UDuIw
BW + 45 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Pendlay Rows:
300 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Incline Bench Press:
315 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Standing Military Press:
225 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Close Grip Bench Press:
Worked up to 285 lbs x 6, shoulder felt a little tight so shut it down there.

Off Road
06-09-2010, 07:04 AM
Crazy strong! You also have ninja pull-up powers :)

Pure Water
06-09-2010, 05:32 PM
6/2/2010
Today was a long day in the office, ended up spending about 11 hours at work. This caused me to miss dinner and I didn't have my usual pre workout drink... so all in all I was not setting myself up for great training.

There was a pull-up contest on another forum so I decided to give that a try as a warmup.

Wide Grip Chins:
BW x 20 reps (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5H36kGYH9g)
BW + 45 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Pendlay Rows:
325 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2 (PR)

Incline Bench Press:
320 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Standing Military Press:
225 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Close Grip Bench Press:
290 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

None of these sets were to failure although the Pendlay Rows and Standing Press were fairly tough.

In this video that you showed, I don't know if you just don't do it or not but the program says to control the weight while lowering and then explode up. Didn't really look like you were doing that. Not trying to say hey! you're doing it wrong! or anything like that, just wandering.

Tom Mutaffis
06-11-2010, 05:42 PM
In this video that you showed, I don't know if you just don't do it or not but the program says to control the weight while lowering and then explode up. Didn't really look like you were doing that. Not trying to say hey! you're doing it wrong! or anything like that, just wandering.

Both of the pullup videos were unrelated to the HCT-12 program and were just for fun.

You are correct though that I usually do not go super slow on negatives; just controlled. Perhaps I will try working with some different tempos in upcoming workouts.

Tom Mutaffis
06-11-2010, 05:43 PM
6/10/2010
Was feeling pretty tired today, still made it to the gym for a quick lower body training session.

Warmup:
Elliptical for 7 1/2 minutes

Front Squat:
375 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Beltless Rack Pulls:
405 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2 (Only used straps at the end of the first step - doing these to incorporate some grip work)

Hammer Strength Calf Raise:
2 plates / side x 15 reps x 5 sets

Alternating DB Curls:
25 lbs x 6, 35 lbs x 6, 45 lbs x 6
55 lbs x 6 + 2 + 2 + 2

Finished off with some upper body 'prehab' work.

Pure Water
06-11-2010, 08:18 PM
Both of the pullup videos were unrelated to the HCT-12 program and were just for fun.

You are correct though that I usually do not go super slow on negatives; just controlled. Perhaps I will try working with some different tempos in upcoming workouts.

Now that you say that, I don't know why I didn't realize that before haha, I'm a dummy. :)

Off Road
06-11-2010, 09:19 PM
What height are you pulling from?

Tom Mutaffis
06-14-2010, 08:28 AM
What height are you pulling from?

I do most of my rack pulls from right at my knee (18-19").

Tom Mutaffis
06-14-2010, 08:33 AM
6/12/2010
Walked the dog for a good 20-30 minutes in the morning and then took a day trip down to Charleston, SC.

Conditioning:
Bike riding for 2-3 hours, easy pace.

The drive was about 3 1/2 hours each way and so I was pretty exhausted when we got home.

Off Road
06-14-2010, 08:36 AM
I do most of my rack pulls from right at my knee (18-19").
I am going to be doing it at 18", which hits me below the knees...long legs don't you know.

Tom Mutaffis
06-14-2010, 08:40 AM
6/13/2010
Went to the gym but was not recovered from the trip yesterday; after going through my warmups I decided to just do some light machine work.

Active Recovery:
- Hammer Strength ISO Rows
- Hammer Strength Shoulder Press
- Pullups
- ISO Pulldown / Seated Row (Superset)
- High Rep Pushdowns
- Crunch Machine

I am going to take another 1-2 days of rest and get my diet back on track then try to hit the gym again next week. This will be my 4th week on HCT-12 and I am going to modify the program for the next training cycle; I will post more on that next week.

Tom Mutaffis
06-14-2010, 10:01 AM
I am going to be doing it at 18", which hits me below the knees...long legs don't you know.

If you have any scrap wood laying around I would recommend building boxes to pull from; it will keep you from bending your bar in the rack.

Off Road
06-14-2010, 10:04 AM
Good to know.

Tom Mutaffis
06-16-2010, 08:27 AM
6/16/2010
I am going to be switching over to another program now to prepare for a national level strongman event next month. Either today or tomorrow I will sit down and gather some thoughts on HCT-12 so that I can provide a 'review' for others who are considering the program.

My training log will continue in the Member's Journals section (link in my signature).

Off Road
06-16-2010, 08:29 AM
Good luck with the new routine and the competition. It was fun watching somebody with your strength do the HCT-12 routine.