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A Blog Post

Long time, no post.

Long time no post. Busy with exams etc etc As promised a few videos and a brief update. All a bit disjointed but bear with me.

Had my final medical written exams earlier this week. At one point after the 1st exam i figured i’d probably failed and would have to become a professional strongman earlier then i’d anticipated however the 2nd exam was a lot better and there’s a small chance i will actually be a doctor come August.

The rehab has been going well. I’ve had a number of sports massages and i’ve been using foam rollers and some new age techniques to aid recovery (they call it ‘stretching’ and ‘warming up’ <- god knows) but despite my doubts there seems to be something to it and my back is slowly improving. In my next comp i’ve got a sack press and the technical aspects of this were shitting me up. So i had a few goes with a sack in the gym and it turns out it wasnt too bad. The sack in the comp is a bit heavier but the pressing isnt a problem, it was just the technique…. It’ll still be different on the day and if possible i’ll try and have a few goes with the actual sack before the event but you can only do so much.
Apart from that i’ve been squatting a lot to let my back recover and deadlifts can go to hell for a bit. Again i’ve dropped the depth and am going wide stance again to see if i can push through my previous 1RM. The main focus of the next few weeks for me is fitness and technique as my timetable at the moment is:

2 weeks
Body expo comp
3 weeks
Southern natural qualifiers
2 weeks
Welsh National Open Comp.

So realistically i’m not gonna improve my strength. Fitness and technique however can improve drastically in this time and have less chance of injuring me in the process. On top of this i’ve hitting the rehab hard to avoid any further injury and ensure i can perform at the next 3 comps….

In other news, Dave of Daves gym has recently started doing a Westside barbell routine and as this involves specialist equipment (bands and chains) and he owns a gym, he bought bands and chains. Now it would be rude not to have a go so i joined him for a workout and we did some reverse band bench press.

The basic idea behind this is that at the bottom of the rep (which is the hardest) the band will help you the most as it’s most stretched. As you lift, the band releases more weight and you have to work harder. This reverses the normal strength curve as you can see from the video (i slow down at the top instead of the bottom). It’s good for getting more weight on the bar and working your triceps hard. We did it cos it looked cool. I apoligise for my ‘ab’ in the video. It’s a result of the massive back arch i was using during the rep (and nothing at all to do with the masses of macdonalds i consume). Also notice the powerlifting 2 second pause at the bottom of the rep 🙂 (easy when you have band taking the weight!!!).

I went on from this to do 220kg for a single with an even bigger band helping me.

I’ve also had a go with the bands the other way round (i.e. attatched to the floor) with squats. This means that the hardest part of the rep (the bottom) is ‘normal’ and the top of the rep which is usually easier becomes harder as the band stretches. This allows you to work on your acceleration and speed. I combined this with ‘rehab’ and ‘conditioning’ and did 3 circuits of:

6 front squats (with bands), 6 good mornings (with bands), 6 romanian deadlifts (with axle) and 6 dead rows (with axle). I did all those back to back and took a minute off between each round.  It was brutal and afterwards i was broken but it was fun and i’ll probably include something similar to finish each workout from now on.

Another event at the upcoming comp is a 340kg side deadlift hold…. thats 170kg in each hand…. for maximum time i.e. you just pick up the weight and hold it up for as long as possible. I decided to have a go at this and loaded up our farmers handles with the weight. I had a good go with plenty in the tank, i didn’t want to max out but i just wanted a feel of the weight….and it felt good.

After the workout i had a really nailed my post workout nutrition:

Boom, it’s ok, i had a cheese burger as well (don’t panic).

Sorry for the sporadic post but it’s covering about 4 workouts since i last posted and i can’t remember the intricacies, just the big stuff. It’s all a bit disjointed but now that i’ve finished my written exams hopefully i can post a bit more consistently…

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