Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Groundhog Day in the GYM!?!?!?!

Does your day consist of wake up, work, go to gym? Have you found yourself doing the same exercises, sets, reps, rest period as your were doing last year? Is every Monday a Bench Press Day followed by some Curls in the nearest Squat Rack. Unless you are doing a remake of Bill Murray's Groundhog Day it's time to add some variety to your precious time in the gym.

Why waste your time doing the same crap over and over again? It's time for a change. My suggestion is not to drastic. Use the same exercise you are comfortable with but change it up a bit. How? One way is to use different equipment.

I focus major of my training around Push Press, Deadlift, Bench, and Squat. Recently I felt I was in a rut and I was doing too much of the same movement patterns so instead of Regular Deadlift I switched to Trap Bar Deadlift.
photo.jpg picture by nbstrengthcoach

Squat changed to Box Squat, Push Press went to Strict Standing Press, Bench was followed up by 3-Board work.
As you can see the core movements are still pretty similar to the original version.

Straight Bar Deadlift vs. Trap Bar Deadlift=Trap Bar is a little easier on your back because you stand inside the bar and the weight is spread throughout the lower body and not significantly limited to lower back strength.

Free Squat vs. Box Squat=According to Louie Simmons, "Box Squat is the most effective method to produce a first-rate squat....and you don't have to ask if your parallel."

Push Press vs. Standing Strict Press=Learned this from Coach Seitz at TxState since he does them on a regular basis that Strict Press takes the dip and drive from your legs which equals less weight but more of a strength upper body movement.

Bench Press vs. Board Press=Shortens the range of the movement which can equal heavier weight and help through a sticking point. Read this Elitefts Board Press Article.

Hopefully this post shed some light on changing up your routine a bit and using some different equipment in your gym. It won't kill you but stick with the new movement for a bit because your learning something new. Try changing things up when you get bored you won't regret!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Top 3 Best and Worst of Your Local Farmers Market

Your local Farmer's Market can be a great place to get some good food that isn't pumped full of pesticides and hormones but there are some good and bad things you need to know before you show up.

Top 3 Best Reasons

3. Your sticking it to the man. Well kinda. Your supporting the local economy by paying the Farmer instead of the big business grocery store. Screw the Middle Man!

2. When you show up your getting some quality food that hasn't been effed with. At your local Farmer's Market your going to get the basics that are always good in any meal so you won't leave without buying something.

1. The price is not that far off from what you would pay at the Grocery Store. I mainly go to the local Farmer's Market for Grass Fed Beef and I can tell you for a fact that it is cheaper than Whole Foods. And some of Whole Foods Meat is not always grass fed but grain finished.

Top 3 Worst Reasons

3. A bunch of these local farmer's don't bring credit card swipers, so bring some cash. To some this might not be a big deal until you get there and no ATM in sight.

2. Sometimes the food spoils faster. This might have something to do with not having the pesticides and hormones but if your busy you might keep that food in the fridge a little longer than you should and if it's all natural it will go bad.

1. You get pushed around by old lady while you wait in line. It may be my fault, but I thought the basics of civilization of a single file line also applied to Farmer's Market and that's where I was wrong. Your not getting in the way of an old lady who wants her turnips and radishes. Yeah, what am I supposed to do push back??


Well there you have it some good and bad of the Farmer's Market. This post was done for fun so don't get me wrong you need to go and get some choice food for reasonable price. Have your money ready and screw the line just cut to the front!!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Homemade Prowler

If you have been following Strength and Conditioning for a while you know that Elitefts Prowler is one of the most brutal pieces of cardio equipment that you can buy. The problem, as with most top-of-the-line equipment, is the cost.

Now if you have some time to sit down and think what piece of equipment you want you can usually make or have someone make it for you. Just check out the posts at RossTraining.com of some smart guys who didn't let $$$ get in the way of having kick-ass equipment.

I was sitting around and out of nowhere I decided I want a Homemade Prowler. I started searching around and came up with some good ideas of what some other guys had been doing. Although I liked some of their designs, I didn't think they would work for me. I finally found some pics and made a drawing with some dimensions I thought could work. Next, I had to find someone who could pull it off.

So as a public school teacher/coach I have the uncanny ability to try and find stuff the cheapest way possible. If only everyone had it. So who in the hell could I pay to get the Operation Homemade Prowler done??


None other than the Highschool welding teacher! He did an awesome job on it and had it done in about a week. I could have him make me probably 6-7 of these bad boys before it gets close to the price of having an Elitefts Prowler. With the Elitefts Model you get what you pay for.

Next time you are thinking you want a certain piece of equipment don't be scared to ask those around you and let them have fun with it. Finding someone to do the work should be the least of your problems if you determined. There is a person who wants to do it. What do you have to lose? If you get one of the above probably your lunch.

Next you might ask is how the Homemade Prowler has held up. Tough Mutha. It's working great and is easy to transport in the back of my truck. Check out my brother tearin' up the streets with it.

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