New PR, Training, Update

Training Update, Life in Taiwan

Training has been going well, and life in Taiwan has settled into a comfortable rhythm.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine set a new Deadlift Pr back home ¬†in Canada, and that inspired me to take a bash at setting one of my own. I’ve been rebuilding my Deadlift lately, having fixed up my form and corrected some serious errors I’d been making.

My lats and upper back suffered from under-development, and I did not engage them during my Deadlift, which always left my lower back overtaxed and feeling burnt out after Deadlifts. Learning to engage my lats had helped greatly in engaging my entire back, and my Deadlifts now feel better than they ever have.

I managed to pull 170 kg/374 lbs at 99 kg/218 lbs bodyweight. That was a huge success for me, being:

  1. the heaviest BW Ratio I have ever pulled, at 1.7x Bodyweight
  2. close to the heaviest I have ever pulled, and at a lighter bodyweight.

In the summer of 2015, I pulled 405 lbs, but that was wearing a belt, and with absolutely atrocious form. This was smoother, and felt like much more of a victory.

 

Life in Taiwan is settling down. Work leaves me plenty of personal time, which is fantastic. I renewed my contract for a second year, which means I won’t be back for a while yet.

I also registered for my first coaching certification, and I’ll be working towards becoming a Kettlebell Coach over the next two months, preparing for the course in November. Very excited for this, and I’m looking at it as the first step on my journey to becoming a strength coach and eventually a gym owner.

That’s all for now, thank you for your continued readership!

Cheers,

The Bear.

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Programming, Thoughts, Training

6 Week Program Wrap-Up & Looking Ahead

Way behind on posting! Sorry again, a thousand times.

Finished off my trial run of my 6-Week Program and I really enjoyed it! Anyone interested in trying it out, or looking for some help with programming or training feel free to contact me on FB or IG

The Program felt good, and I’m happy with the results. However, since my last post I’ve moved on to new things.

I’ve been running through Brian Alsruhes Linear Progression Program. It is a beautiful program, which challenges strength and conditioning. I have adopted his Giant Set principle into my primary training, and it has benefited me greatly. ¬†The video is quite informative, and I encourage you to watch it.

My body weight spiked quite a bit when I came to Taiwan, rising up to 115kg, which is close to the heaviest I’ve ever been. That wasn’t doing anything for me. If you follow me on IG, you’ll know that I’m working on dieting down to the u90kg weight class for Strongman. I’ve come down from 115 kg to 100 kg, and I’m feeling fantastic.

Training is going well, and I am aiming to be at my target weight by November, when I plan on taking a Coaching Certification course offered by the best Strongman gym in Taiwan, Formosa Fitness.

Sorry for the long absence, hope this catches everyone up. I’ve got a lot coming up in the future, and I’m going to be more diligent with this blog.

That’s all for now, keep training hard!

Cheers,

The Bear

Programming, Thoughts, Training, Update

One Week To Go! / Looking Ahead

Well I have one week left to go in my 6 Week Program. I have been controlling my diet well and it has been going quite well! I’ll be posting my results next weekend, but I can say, looking at the numbers, that my lifts and rep ranges have gone steadily up across all my primary lifts.

This is hugely encouraging, as I’ve managed to shed about 15 lbs in the process. I’m very happy with how things have come together, and I’m excited about my future progress.

Looking ahead now, I’ve been happy with my progress, but I also feel like I went a little easy on myself. I know, deep down, that my body is capable of much more than I usually push it to achieve.

To that end, I’m going to be reprogramming next weekend. I am continuing a total-body program, aimed at increasing my general strength. I’ve been looking in to Linear Progression programs as explained¬†by Brian Alsruhe. My brother has been using his program and really enjoys it, and I think that it will be what I’m looking for.

Here is the video, if you’re interested. He lays out the basics of the program, and how it benefits his training. It sounds a little daunting, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. I’ll put my program together this week, and let you know how it goes!

Keep checking back for the wrap-up of my first 6 weeks, and train hard!

Feel free to message me any questions, or leave them in the comments below.

Cheers,

The Bear.

Training

Training Logs, Dec. 27th to Jan 5th

Haven’t had the chance to sit down and update my training logs in what feels like ages. Here is a bit of a backlog, followed by an uplifting¬†update!

Tuesday, Dec 27

  • Flat Bench
    • 50 kg x 15
    • 70 kg x 8
    • 90 kg x 2
    • 100 kg x 1
    • 120 kg attempt – failure
    • 95 kg x 3 (3)
  • OHP – Push Press
    • 60 kg x 6
    • 65 kg x 4
  • OHP – Strict Press
    • 40 kg x 12 (2)
  • 1 Arm DB Rows
    • 15 kg x 15 (3)
  • Incline DB Bench Press
    • 12 kg x 20 (3)

Finished with a superset of 3-Direction Shoulder Flys and Hammer Curls.

This workout was a little scattered, and I think my concentration was suffering as a result of missing my 120 kg bench attempt. But I got plenty of volume in, and felt good overall.

Thursday, Dec 29th

  • High Bar Back Squat
    • 20 kg (bar) x 8
    • 60 kg x 5
    • 70 kg x 5
    • 90 kg x 5
    • 100 kg x 8
  • Low Bar Back Squat
    • 100 kg x 5 (2)
    • 110 kg x 5
    • 120 kg x 3 (2)
  • High Bar Back Squat
    • 70 kg x 15
    • 80 kg x 15

Finished with a Superset of Leg Extensions and Sumo Deadlifts (at 80 kg)

Squats were feeling on point today. Everything felt really solid, and I left with a tremendous leg pump from my final superset. This leg session was a huge confidence boost.

Saturday, Dec 31st

  • Steep Incline Bench (45-50 degrees)
    • 40 kg x 10
    • 50 kg x 8
    • 60 kg x 5
    • 65 kg x 5
    • 75 kg x 3
    • 80 kg x 3 (3)
  • Standing 1 Arm DB Press (strict)
    • 18 kg x 10
    • 20 kg x 10
    • 23 kg x 5

Finished with some light accessory work: Lat Pulldowns, DB Back Flys, Chest Press Machine, EZ Bar Curls, Face Pulls, Tricep Pullovers, and some Bicep Curl Machine.

Definitely a sweaty session. kept things light with machine work, tried to hit my arms hard, and get plenty of volume and variety.

Tue Jan 3rd

  • High Bar Back Squat
    • 40 kg x 5
    • 60 kg x 5
    • 80 kg x 5
    • 90 kg x 5
    • 100 kg x 5
    • 110 kg x 3
    • 115 kg x 2 (2)
    • 120 kg x 2
    • 125 kg x 2
  • Finished with a Superset of Leg Press and Leg Extensions.

This was a terrific leg workout. Plenty of volume, and my form felt solid working up to heavier weights. I definitely feel stronger squatting Low Bar, but High Bar helps me focus on bracing and training my lower back a little more.

Thu Jan 5th

  • Flat Bench Press
    • 70 kg x 10
    • 90 kg x 10
    • 100 kg x 3
    • 115 kg x 1
    • 110 kg x 1
  • Close Grip Bench Press
    • 70 kg x 15
    • 80 kg x 10
  • Finished with a Superset of Hammer Curls and 3 Direction Shoulder Flys

Since I hit legs so hard on Tuesday, this was a light bench day, just trying to work on my pressing power. Bench has been frustrating lately, but it’s been helping my pushing power, so I’ll stick with it.

I haven’t kept up with my training logs this week, but things have been going very well.

 

 

Thoughts, Training

Weekly Training Update, December 17-18.

It’s been a good week for training. I had two solid upper body sessions at Contender Boxing Club during the week, and a great lower body and event day at Formosa Fitness on Saturday. Everything is feeling pretty good. And to top it all off, I found a new training partner, which will be a huge help.

I did some deadlifting on Saturday, since Formosa was running another certification class, and I could only use the open area for 3 quick sets of Farmers Walk. I was quite nervous about how my deadlift would be, since I haven’t actually deadlifted in nearly 4 months. But, while far from my all time best, I managed 150kg for a clean, beltless single. I’m quite happy with that, since I used to struggle quite a bit locking out anything heavier than 140 kg, and 150 went up smoothly. This means my lower body training, focusing on my glutes, is paying off. I have always suffered from a weak ass, and I’m really focusing on fixing that.

Here are my workout reports for the week:

Tuesday, December 13th

Bench Press

  • 40 kg x 15
  • 50 kg x 15
  • 60 kg x 15
  • 70 kg x 8
  • 80 kg x 8
  • 90 kg x 5
  • 95 kg x 3 (3)

Seated Z-Press (straddling bench, no back support)

  • 35 kg x 8
  • 40 kg x 8
  • 45 kg x 5
  • 50 kg x 5
  • 55 kg x 2.5 (very nearly a 3-rep PR!)

I finished this workout with a Pump Out, supersetting three variations of bicep curls, lat pulldowns, and chest and shoulder flys.

Thursday, December 15th – Upper Body

Warmup

Incline Bench Press

  • 40 kg x 15
  • 50 kg x 15
  • 60 kg x 8
  • 50 kg x 8 (3)

Dumbbell 1-Arm Rows

  • 15 kg x 15
  • 18 kg x 15 (2)

Standing Military Press (Strict)

  • 30 kg x 15
  • 35 kg x 12
  • 30 kg x 12 (2) – Wide Grip
  • 30 kg x 8(2) – Narrow Grip

Upright Rows

  • 35 kg x 15 (2)

Close-Grip Bench Press

  • 30 kg x 15
  • 40 kg x 12
  • 40 kg x 8

Saturday, December 17

Straight Bar Deadlift

  • 50 kg x 10
  • 60 kg x 10
  • 95 kg x 8
  • 115 kg x 6
  • 132 kg x 3
  • 150 kg x 1
  • 140 kg x 3 (3)

Farmers Walk, 20m, Drop and Turn at Halfway

  • 47.5 kg x 2
  • 57.5 kg x 1
  • 77.5 kg x 1

High Bar Squat

  • 60 kg x 8
  • 80 kg x 5

Paused Front Squat

  • 60 kg x 3 (3)

Zercher Squat

  • 55 kg x 6
  • 75 kg x 3
  • 85 kg x 3

Log Press, Strict (Clean Once)

  • 30 kg log x 10
  • 50 kg x 5
  • 55 kg x 5
  • 60 kg x 3(2)

Log Clean

  • 70 kg x 3
  • 75 kg x 3
  • 80 kg x 2

Flat Log Bench Press

  • 80 kg x 5 (2)

When I tried to squat, my chest was still very tight from all the chest work during the week, and I couldn’t get comfortable under the bar, so I elected to move to Front and Zercher squats. Overall I’m quite happy with this weeks training. Now it’s time for a couple days rest, and I’ll be back at it on Tuesday.

Cheers,

The Bear.

 

New PR, Training

Starting Strongman Program: Week 3

Week 3 of my Starting Strongman Training Program draws to a close, and I enter my first de-load week. It’s shaping up to be a much-needed break from the intensity, as well as good timing for me to get settled into a new job.

So far this program has done an excellent job in challenging me to push myself, and my limits. It’s hit my weak points, particularly my abs, upper back, and glutes, quite hard. But I am enjoying myself immensely. The supersets of Hammer Curls, DB Shrugs and Tricep Pulldowns that finish my Thursday workouts always leave me with a terrific pump.

Last week called for a new 5RM on my overhead event. I hit 165×5 on the axle quite comfortably. My previous best was 155×1, since I did not have access to an axle before. My strength is slowly and steadily increasing, and the strength I’m building in my core and back make all my overhead pressing feel far more stable and secure. I can’t wait to see what I can do at the end of these 12 weeks.

Cheers,

The Bear

Thoughts, Training, Update

New Training Regimen; Looking Ahead

Since this summer is slowly winding down, and with two competitions under my belt, I find myself looking ahead to my future in this great sport. I have enjoyed myself immensely, met some amazing people, and challenged my preconceptions of what I am capable of achieving. I have a long way to go to get where I want to be, but I also have plenty of time to get there.

Looking ahead now means preparing for next season (as well as a competition or two I am thinking of doing in September). My own training schedule is hand-crafted and forged from my own experience. I have had trouble both sticking to it, and balancing all the elements I need in order to have a successful program.

So I have decided to let the experts at Starting Strongman guide me. This Monday, I am starting their 12-week basic strongman strength training program (available for free on their website). I am very excited, and the program, while simple, looks like it will give me everything I need to increase my overall strength, and target some of my weaker points.

I will do my very best to post training videos and updates weekly.

Cheers,

The Bear