Nice work April! Did pulling sumo bother your knee at all?
Nice work April! Did pulling sumo bother your knee at all?
The good thing though now the last couple months my knee has felt fine by the following day each time, even if it gets aggravated a little bit while lifting.
I decided about a month ago to try a strongman show nearby in May just for fun, since it has a couple events I'm interested in trying and actually a few heavyweight women to compete against who are decent, and this is during my off-season pretty much as I don't plan to do another raw powerlifting meet until at least sometime in the fall. I will, however, also do the shirted bench in a meet the end of May if I get the new shirt in time and it works out well. If not, it will also be later this year.
So, anyways, here is today. I had absolutely no idea how to do a clean before this. I have tried fairly unsuccessfully a couple times many years ago and never really wanted to train it ever. One of the events is a clean and press medley of different objects, so I have to at least be able to figure it out well enough to do the weights at it.
03/13/2014 Strongman Events clean and pressing
Log (empty is 90 but it is a larger one)
90x3 cleans and 1 press
140x2 cleans and 1 press
180x2 cleans and 1 press
-The event weight is 170lbs. on log so this was fine. There was no need to go heavier on this one, as the others were much harder and needed more time. The clean was pretty easy on this actually. Press is super easy for me on this and everything obviously.
Axle (empty is 20)
20xat least 10 cleans
70x3 cleans and 1 press
110x3 cleans and 1 press (plus a couple missed attempts before I got it right)
140xa bunch of missed attempts at cleans
110x5 cleans and 1 press with continental style clean
130x3 cleans and 2 presses with continental style cleans (plus a couple misses before I got it right)
-The axle was very hard for me to clean even with light weight. I am not flexible at all as far as shoulder flexibility and I am also not fast. Up to 110 I did ok with 1 motion. I have an extremely hard time getting my elbows under the bar, and I have to hold the bar extra wide just to get my elbows under it at all. With some practice with the continental cleans double overhand style, I was doing much better after I figured it out a way that was ok for me. The weight is 170 on the axle, but I was just happy getting the technique decent enough with 130 today after a lot of failed attempts on the cleans. Next time I will go to at least 170.
90lbs. kegx5 cleans and 5 presses
140lbs. kegx a bunch of clean attempts, but couldn't get elbows under enough to be in a pressing position
-The event weight on this is 135lbs. keg. The light one I did easy with 1 motion. The heavier one, which was just over contest weight, I had a much harder time with. I got it up enough but just couldn't finish the last small part of getting my elbows under it before I could press it. I was told that I was not leaning back, and that's what I need to do to get it. To me, I felt like I was leaning back, but apparently everyone else says it looks like I am not leaning back at all. Obviously, this is just another flexibility and technique issue I need to fix before then. I thought of a couple other ideas to try next time.
The other two events are circus db only 90lbs. which is real easy, I don't really need to practice that, and pressing block 155lbs. which looks like an extremely odd and large block, so that will also likely be difficult for me to clean, but I need to try it next weekend when I can train with the actual one used at the contest.
Pretty cool to see you doing something different. I've thought about doing a strongman competition, but doing axle clean&press is what I was doing when I tore my ACL. Where are you doing your events at?
I can't do the clean and press like some of these people can. At least it's not a heavy weight. I need to squat down more and lean forward due to lack of speed and I also can't get that quick pop that a lot of people can (might be due to my knee also), even to do the continental clean.
If anything bothers my knee too much or think I will injure it, then I just will pass on it. The squat event I'm looking forward to do something decent though, at least over 600 anyways, since it will be the first time I squat anything heavy in a long time, and see if it feels ok (it will be above parallel too I believe for my height) before doing a full power meet later this year.
03/16/2014 Bench at Powerhouse Downtown Tampa
385x1 (but spotter tapped it slightly to finish lockout)
Flat DB Bench
160sx3 these dbs were too loose and moved in my hands
Close-grip Decline Machine
Cable Flyes (each side)
Good day. Big PR on incline bench. Last time I only did 360x1 sometime mid last year. 365x2 felt easier today than that was. I will be doing these more often, at least on weeks I bench raw heavy for awhile. I will try to do them at least once per month. I would really like to do a 405 incline in the near future.
Heck of an incline PR April, congrats! Strongman should be a fun experience. I tossed the idea around also as we picked up some guys lately who also compete strongman. Can only help!
03/20/2014 Back (light day)
Lat Pulldowns behind head
Lat Pulldowns wide grip
Shrugs on Calf Raise Machine (paused reps)
That's all today. Doing strongman events on Saturday and squatting (since that will be one of the events).
03/22/2014 Strongman Events- Clean and Pressing and Squat @ Richard Gregg's place
50x5cleans+10presses to warmup
120x2cleans+2presses (and one missed clean attempt)
140x1clean+1press (after a lot of missed clean attempts)
At least this was 10lbs. better than last time. Clean still feels horrible though. Getting my elbows under it is very hard. Just another 30lbs. is the contest weight at 170lbs., so I should be fine cleaning that by then, but I want to be able to do that consistently without missing it.
80x3cleans+3presses right hand
80x3cleans+3presses left hand
This was easy. The contest weight is 90, but 80 was the empty one. Obviously easy, but I wanted to try it just once before the contest, and see which hand felt better. The left hand felt more stable holding it still at lockout each time, even though both were easy presses, so I think I will choose left hand for this.
155x1 clean attempt
Tried to clean it once, but it was too big lengthwise for me to grab both sides. They were already putting this object away after this, so I didn't try it again and decided to leave it for next time. Later, a friend of mine thought about a way I could do this grabbing it the other way, so I may do that. Richard said he will likely make a smaller one for women and novice men I believe, so it will be the same weight but easier to grab around.
Squat Event- Hummer Tires on each side walked out to pause on boxes and squat it up
barxsome to warmup
235x3 this was the tires only on the bar
That's all I had time for today. I wanted to try one more squat with 505, but I would need to put the rack height lower and reset the stuff also and everyone else was done. I got a feel for what it is like and the depth required for me (it is a few inches above parallel when on the boxes), so I can set it up in the gym. I was a little worried about my knee walking out too, but everything felt fine. It should be better with loose wraps on too. I will start practicing squatting heavy with a similar setup in the gym, and walking out my regular squats until then. 500 should be a good starting weight for this. I think that will be enough to win this event for me, and also be easy enough after 3 other events to have no issue, then go heavier. Even if the 500 wins, I plan to do at least a 600 if I'm not too tired, maybe 650-700 if it feels easy enough.
Strong event day April!
Where's this competition at?
03/24/2014 Form practice for cleans/Biceps
High Pulls (first part of the continental clean, so I think this is the name for it)
barxsome to warmup
Then I was trying a few different grips and ways of getting it up with only 95 and 115, about a total of 15 or so singles trying different things. Nothing really felt better than just the double overhand continental clean so far. I didn't have an axle to use today unfortunately (I thought I would be able to use a fat bar but I guess the guy that owns it took it out of the gym sometime in the last couple weeks). So things will be a little different with the axle. I know the first part of the lift will be fine with the 170 contest weight though at least. I don't think I will need to practice that again now until the contest, just getting the bar in pressing position from there.
Preacher Curls with Fat Grip Handle (each arm)
Rope Hammer Curls (paused reps)
That's all today. Benching heavy with shirt on Wednesday.
03/26/2014 Bench at North Port Barbell
Add blast shirt
Shirt was too tight. Couldn't get it on all the way, and it felt like it wasn't helping at all. I didn't bring another shirt today so switched to slingshot instead.
Bench w/Slingshot (full-range)
Cable Flyes with band
3sets of 12
3sets of 15
Benching felt good raw and with slingshot today. 385x3 felt pretty easy. I would like to be able to get 405x3-4 fairly easy before I start training for another raw meet. I know I can triple that by the time I get to a meet, but it would be a pretty big improvement doing so far out from a meet and as just a moderate set. This shirt was my favorite shirt to use so far, but since I just got it back from the seams being fixed, it now fits too tight apparently even though it wasn't tightened at all. I need to try to stretch out the sleeves if I am going to use it again. Hopefully get my new shirt in the next couple weeks. I almost see no point in some of these other ones until then. I may do some board pressing with the denim one next time though.
Squat (no belt)
Small blue bandx15x4sets each leg
Seated Leg Curls
4sets of 15
Weighted Abs Machine
4sets of 10
Heaviest I've squatted yet. The 465 was easy enough (actually easier than I expected since the earlier sets felt pretty slow today), but it bothered my knee some so I stopped there. I was planning on setting up the chains today to mimic the strongman event also, but I had to wait about 20 minutes to use the monolift and squat bar, so I just did regular squats so I would finish before the gym closed, since they close early on Fridays. Will have to do those next week. I would like to at least do a 500 on those. I think they won't bother my knee with as light of weight since it's less range of motion than a full squat, so I will have to see. Either way, I'm positive a 500-550 will be enough to win that event easy, and if I put knee wraps on light to moderate wrap, then it should feel better that way too. I think it will just be a little more time before squatting and pulling in the 500s will feel good and then beyond that, but I'm still happy with the progress so far, as only half a year ago 135 felt worse than high-400s now. The bar is starting to feel lighter at least with 300s and 400s also, and making larger jumps felt ok this time.
04/01/2014 Strongman Events- Clean and Pressing at Roman Strongman
Axle Clean and Press
70xsome of each to warmup
110x3 cleans and 3 presses
130x3 cleans and 1 press
150x5 cleans and 2 presses
160x2 cleans and 2 presses
170xa bunch of clean attempts (missed but very close)
So, the regular clean was a lot easier than continental clean this time, so that's what I'm staying with. 160lbs. was a 20lbs increase from my best last time, and only 10lbs. from the meet weight of 170lbs. I was extremely close many times with the 170lbs. I'm sure I can get it in the next couple times I try it before the contest.
150lbs.x6 clean attempts
I was not cleaning this correctly still. The 90lbs. one has been the only one I have been able to do right, I think because I basically throw it up since it is so light, but the others I actually have to use technique. The event weight is 135lbs., so maybe I will get it, but since I can choose the order of events in the medley, this one will definitely be last unless I can figure out how to get it in a pressing position easy enough sometime before then.
I was happy with the improvement I have made on cleans over the last few times, but still have to practice some more with several of the objects.
04/05/2014 Bench at Downtown Tampa Powerhouse
Hammer Strength Bench Machine
Curls on Machine (each arm)
drop set: 90x15
Rope Triceps Pushdowns (~20sec. between sets)
Today was decent. I wanted to try 375x2 incline, but 1 felt pretty hard. First time I did decline in a long time. Felt shaky like the first time doing incline in a long while did recently. I do miss that though, as it was one of my favorite kinds of bench for a long time years ago, but I haven't had a decent decline bench to use at most gyms I've trained at. This one was ok, but the rack was still pretty far behind my head. Shoulders felt pretty sore today though after warmups, so I am going to take about a week off after I squat Sunday or Monday. Also why I did a little bit of arm stuff today.
Squat to chains at 38" off ground
485x1 wraps but very loose to be more like a knee sleeve
Seated Leg Curls
Weighted Abs Machine
3sets of 10 paused
I set up the squat today to be like the squat event at the strongman contest. It did feel very similar like this, which is what I was hoping for. I even simulated a walkout somewhat with two small steps (best I could for using a monolift swung open with having to hang the chains off of it). At this height is a few inches above parallel, but I actually think it fells somewhat harder to me than a regular squat, since it seems to stop at an awkward point in the lift for me. My knee hurt a bit with the 485, so I stopped there today, even though it was easy enough. The wraps even just put on like that without pulling them seem to make a little difference over just knee sleeves like when I did regular squats last week. I will put the wraps on at least loose to moderate next time and do a low-500s. I think I may just be taking one attempt at the contest with around that weight to win the event. I was hoping to try a higher weight just because I thought that event would be fun to go heavy on, but I don't think my knee will be ready to attempt a 600 or more yet in just over a month. I don't have any reason to risk injuring it again if I already win the event anyways.
04/16/2014 Bench at North Port Barbell
Bench Press (pause just before touching each rep)
309+80lbs.chainx3 (touched last 2 reps and the rest after this set)
353+80lbs.chainx1 but spotter tapped it to finish lockout
Triceps Pushdowns close-grip
Today was ok. I was tired just from it being earlier in the day than usual. However, I actually think this still one of my better days in the last few times I've done chains with a similar amount of chain. It really is very close to straight weight with only 80lbs. and all but 1 or 2 links off the floor at lockout, and about 2/3rds of it still off the floor at the bottom. I will be doing strongman events Saturday and possibly tomorrow.
04/19/2014 Strongman Events at Roman Strongman
Truck Pull w/rope
3timesxabout 50-60ft. on flat pavement with a medium size pickup truck
First time I got to try a truck pull, and I think it was actually pretty easy. The only thing I didn't do was keep my hips down enough throughout, at least as I was told. I also took pretty big steps. First time was in neutral, 2nd with brake, and 3rd with more brake applied. I thought I did good with the start too. It seemed like I had an easier time with that than some of the other people I watched trying it. I will definitely try the truck pull a couple more times before the contest next month, see if I can get a little faster and better form with it.
Axle Clean and Press
110x5 cleans and 2 presses
160x2 cleans (missed 1 attempt before getting it twice)
170x1 clean and 1 press (missed 2 cleans and got it the third time)
Finally got the contest weight done. Thanks to Richard Ficca for helping me figure out something that helped. Apparently I try grip the bar too hard and it makes it harder to get my elbows under right at the end, and the time I got the 170, I did better with not gripping it as hard and got it to where I could press it. I will be trying this a few more times along with the other overhead clean and pressing objects before the contest.
That was all today because it started to rain and we could only train outside and they don't want their equipment out in the rain. At least I did two important things in trying an event I never tried before and finally cleaning the axle.
I was able to try a 124lbs. keg clean and press at the gym my friend works at. I did 3 cleans and presses with it without much difficulty, so I may have a decent chance at the 135lbs. keg at the contest. This went much better than the last couple times, even though this one was about 26lbs. lighter than the other. I think that will be close enough in weight that I can clean the 135lbs. one at the contest to where I can press it.
04/22/2014 Back/Light Shoulders
Lat Pulldowns behind head with fat bar attachment
100x10x3sets paused reps
Lat Pulldowns wide-grip with fat bar attachment
Shrugs on Calf Raise Machine (3sec. pauses each rep)
Front Raises/Side Raises/Face Pulls superset
Just did some reps today. I get to try the truck pull with the fire truck that is going to be at the contest on Thursday afternoon, and plan on doing some squatting after.
04/24/2014 Strongman Event-Fire Truck Pull/Light Deadlift and Legs
Truck Pull w/Rope with Fire Truck that will be used at the contest
2 times x 65 feet
This wasn't bad. I thought it was pretty easy. I just get tired near the end and slowed down the last 5 feet or so. That's the one thing I have to try to get better at before then. My steps/technique were better on the 2nd one than the first. Everybody that was there to try it today finished it, so it definitely will just be the fastest time that matters.
Deadlift (no belt)
That's all today. I had planned on squatting, but there was no 8 foot bar, so I just did some light pulls and leg stuff. It was a regular commercial gym (the one which is hosting the contest), but it was ok for today. I will just have to squat sometime next week instead.
04/26/2014 Strongman Events at Roman Strongman
Stone loading over bar at 50"
I did ok at this. Missed getting the 200 over the bar a couple times, then was getting it ok. This was definitely high for me though. There will not be any stones in the odd object load at the contest, but this was all they had to train with today, and said it would still be a similar movement with other objects. These were similar in weight to the contest objects which should be between 140lbs. and 240lbs. or so. I will get to try some of the actual objects next weekend.
100lbs.x8 timesx 20-75 feet
Tried this today since I never have before. First time was really slow. After that, I was helped with using a different technique and was at least 3 times faster after a bunch more tries. Only did 2 full length, and the rest were between 20 and 40 feet just to work on the technique and what felt better/faster. I don't really care what the weight was, as I obviously won't drop 240, but at least figure out the technique to use today. I will likely practice with the one that will be used at the contest once or twice next weekend. This one isn't an event I expect to do great at.
Cable Curls (light)
3sets of 10 each arm
That's all today. Benching on Monday probably.
Remove Carpet/Full-range with wider grip
Pushups with hanging straps paused
Bench was ok. I benched at "The Cave" today, which is a crossfit/strength training place in Sarasota my friend works at. Heavy set didn't feel great but I had a really shitty handoff with the 415 and had to adjust it quite abit. I wanted to get 3 reps, but not today. I think the marks on the bar might have been a bit narrow, because my grip felt too close. On the 365 I put my grip one finger wider, and that felt better. On the last down set with 225, I put my hands another finger wider and that felt better also. I'm not sure if it was the bar today, or just feeling more like I need to start using a wider grip, as I have been feeling like I should the last couple months. I'm going to try slightly wider next time I bench, and using a bench bar and see.