Friday, August 17, 2012

Thoughts and Hawaii Waves

In the world of getting strong, of getting massively strong(like pupil and friend Cristi Bartlett- 505 deadlift at 180), there is little room for mistakes.

 I have trained with and been around some folks that will light your freakin fire when it comes to training and getting better. When I am around Kirk Karwoski, I step aside. Why? because he knows more than me about teaching the squat, bench and deadlift. For  me to think that someone who deadlifted 777, benched in the 500's and squatted 800 without a belt doesn't know more than me is ludicrous. The little tricks that this guy knows to fix just your deadlift, for example, is crazy! It is his life...Why would I ignore his advice? I was talking to Kirk one day about a guy who trains people and he asked me, is that guy strong? And I said, well, he pulled 675x2 or something...and he said, like I said, is that guy strong?

And Marty Gallagher put it to me even better one day.."Anyone can surf New Jersey waves, but the techniques that we use allow you to surf Hawaii waves." The point being that some techniques and programming will get you to a certain point. After that, you better seek out the sages that have been to that world that few have tread..Folks will sell you anything, but seek out the truly strong to get you where you need to be. So the point is- seek out the true sages, not the half asssed ones.


And I have been around enough strong folks, insanely strong folks and insanely talented athletes to know that some simply have IT and some don't. Some quit on a tough rep and some NEVER will. Some , no matter how much that they profess that they want to be strong, will NEVER be strong, no matter what supplements or drugs  they take, or advice they receive.They have no heart. Heart, you can't coach.

 I have one guy that I train, Dave Lutz , who, (forgive me Dave), has average genetic ability. However, Dave has a heart the size of Texas. He will never, ever, quit on a rep.  The difference in Dave and most others is his heart and the fact that he just does it. No questions, no difference to him. I could call for 120% of his max  for 5 and this dude will get under the bar and try it. No worrying about his past injuries, or what somebody else is doing, or what some half assed lifter in the gym has told him he is doing wrong, or what some forum said that his volume is too high,  this man and I emphasize MAN, gets it done. Then he emails me- I got it , dude. And when I write it, I know its gonna happen. Some folks have it, and some don't.

So there is plenty of information out there. And it is confusing. But here is the truth: It ain't programming, its heart.  Focus on developing your heart. If you miss because you were scared, say it. Say it out loud, and maybe next time, you will be too embarrassed to miss again. Lots of times, people will miss a rep, and I will say, oh, you went down too slow or make some excuse for them, because I know that the truth will crush their fragile egos. What I really want to say is, you were scared and you may be not cut out for this stuff..Even if I do say that they were scared, they usually repeat the sorry effort anyway...Like my college coach said, you can't make chicken salad out of chicken sh%$t... Its fine if you aren't cut out for it, but don't go around pretending that you are and blaming everything but your soft soul. That's a shame. In fact, in my experience, most people blame everyone and everything but themselves: It was a long ride, my shorts were too tight, my parents were in town so they distracted me, my preworkout drink didn't kick in, the music sucked... whatever.


Have fun training. Getting strong is a blast. Put aside what you think that you should do and just DO. It's not about folks stroking your ego. Nobody, NOBODY really cares what you lifted that day, no matter what they replied on your forum post. Its for you and talking about it just ruins it, anyway. I have a friend who played pro football for nine years who can literally bench press 405 anytime that he wants. He is six foot three and will rip your throat out in a competitive situation. He doesn't care or think about a program, he just trains til he bleeds. No analysis, just puts on the music and rips it up. He wouldn't post on a message board if he could, because its not about that to him. its sacred and and fun. That's the way to do it.

All About Being a Lifer

What's a Lifer? Someone who isn't in to something for just a day, a month, a's for life. Whether its training or your family or your doesn't matter. You work at it, you build on it, you see the big picture . You don't miss workouts because it means something to you. You are like a Shakespearean actor- no matter what is going on in your life, you block it out when it's time to train. You walk into the weight room and all else disappears. Worry about it later.