Thursday, December 29, 2005

How it all began.....

Below, Bill Pearl shows the effects of hard, heavy training with free weights. Back in the"Golden Era" men not only looked strong, they WERE strong! It's time to get back to the good old days! Are you ready?

Speaking of hard training, this story will give you some insight as to how I began using these odd implements. I was broke and couldn’t afford all the gadgets and gizmos that I was “supposed” to get, you know the stuff I’m talking about: parachutes for sprinting, mini hurdles, large hurdles, agility ladders and the like. I was caught up in the functional training movement and got a bit clouded with all the information out there and wasn’t all that sure where to start.

Here is what I did have though…

I did have a back yard with some downed trees as well as a tire I snagged off the side of the high way. Why not make it work as the “equipment” since I can’t afford to buy the real stuff. The men in world’s strongest man competitions made all these odd implements work for them so I knew we could make it work as well!

So I went ahead and made a tire into a “sled”, used the logs like barbells, used army navy duffel bags like barbells as well. The crew at the tire yard let me come down on Saturdays to train so I bring them some bagels and coffee and they’re more than happy to bring down 2 or 3 different sized tractor tires.

What about the athletes who grew up on farms? They’re always kicking ass. A Farm boy always beats a Mama’s boy!

Do I have to squat with a barbell all the time, or can’t we use logs and sandbags for squatting as well?

Do we have to perform sit ups with legs bent, or can’t we do a get up using a sandbag, making us work the entire body?

The dumbbell complex was increasingly popular, but when training combat athletes I wanted them to “wrestle” against the sandbag the entire time. I wanted the grip to get worked heavily, and I wanted the upper AND lower body to get equal work. Holding the sandbag in the zercher position forces the upper body to work extremely hard while the lower body works during forward, reverse and lateral lunges. Walking and squatting with a sandbag helped improve work capacity, lower body strength and upper body strength at same time. Walk for 10 steps, do 3 squats, walk 10 steps, do 6 walking lunges, walk 10 steps, do 5 good mornings, walk 10 steps, do 5 clean and presses.

Get the picture now?

Next week try doing the work with a barbell. Walk with the bar on your back for 10 steps, 5 squats, walk 10 steps, 6 walking lunges, walk 10 steps, 5 push presses, walk 10 steps with the bar in front (dead lift walk) and 5 bent over rows!

Enough talk fellow Gladiators, it’s time for you to get to work.

See you at The Underground!

p.s. – Find more hard core lifters, coaches and combat athletes at The Underground. Ego free and tons of quality information through the friendly and informative forum, interviews and articles. See you on the other side!



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