Recently, a friend and I assisted a group of young ladies by pushing a car that had run out of gas from the perils of a busy intersection. After pushing the car up a small hill and into a parking lot, I was so gassed that I started to see black spots! My friend, however, seemed all fine and dandy (I think I did most of the pushing). Regardless, the fact that I was so gassed bummed me out! The reason was no secret, though. It was my training! I’ve mainly stuck to a power-building (powerlifting / bodybuilding) type of routine for the past 3 years, with NO emphasis on conditioning, so it shouldn’t have been too much of a surprise that I felt like a fish out of water when it came to pushing a car.
Did I immediately revamp my routine to eliminate the obvious weaknesses in my infrastructure? Sure didn’t. The reason? I honestly had no idea how to. How I felt, after pushing that car, was going to take more than some jump roping and HIIT training to remedy. Plus, I didn’t want to sacrifice my hard earned strength gains by doing too many cardio focused movements. Then, very recently, I was approached with a question that served as a rock that has since rippled my tiny fitness pond. I was asked if I had ever tried strongman training. Queue fireworks.
A co-worker, and current strongman competitor, asked me if I was interested in competing in a strongman contest that is roughly four months away. I told him I’d get back to him because all I could recall of watching strongman contests was that it looked 100 X harder than pushing a stinkin car uphill for a few feet! However, after a few hours of research, I decided I was up for the challenge. My whole routine will have to change, and QUICK! My usual routine simply isn’t going to cut it. I mainly focus on the big 3 (squat, bench press, and deadlift) with a few complimentary accessory moves thrown in. The new routine will still need to focus on those lifts; but will need a fair share of conditioning thrown in and a major focus on the strongman specific moves (implements).
What trials will I face, during the upcoming competition? Well, I’m glad you asked (said with a slight spinal shiver).
I’ll be entering the Lightweight / Novice division with goals to perform the following:
Log Press (210 lbs.) / Axle (205 lbs.) Medley
Starting with log, clean and press then move to the axle and clean and press. Back and forth for max reps in 60 seconds.
Frame Carry (400 lbs.)
Pick and carry for 60 ft. Multiple drops allowed, no straps, chalk only. 60 sec time limit.
Yoke Carry (450 lbs.)
120 ft. total – 60 feet down, drop and re-pickup for 60 feet back. Multiple drops allowed, 60 sec time limit.
Car Deadlift (Car)
Max reps in 60 sec. Straps are OK, but no suits or briefs. Up and Down commands.
Stone over bar (220 lbs.)
Max reps in 60 secs. Bar height: 54ish inches.
Walk in the park, huh? I thought training for a powerlifting meet was tough, but reaching these goals will be more challenging than anything I’ve ever experienced!
So, with my intentions now announced to the public, I better start training! Hopefully my pain serves you great motivation and, at the very least, entertainment. I’ll post often, so be sure to subscribe!