I hate powerlifting…even more than I hate that other stuff I hated previously

But just like when I said I hated Muay Thai and JuiJitsu…I don’t really hate powerlifting. I just hate working with powerlifters. The reason being with power lifting there is no where to hide training wise. If you are a coach of a powerlifter your ability as a coach gets measured pretty much every time your athlete competes. Their squat, bench press and deadlift goes up…or it doesn’t. They get stronger or they don’t. It is also the reason that deep down I actually really enjoy powerlifting…unlike rugby or basketball or football etc etc I can actually see the product of my effort directly and immediately. Rather than being a cog in the wheel and a contrubutor to an athletes performance…powerlifting comes down to how well I coach and how hard and committed the athlete is…I actually love powerlifting for it’s simplicity.

I met Jonathon face to face in Arizona a few years ago at a seminar…he was busy learning and I was busy not learning but he asked me to help him out with his training…which I did. I think this was his first program?

Session 1
Front Squats – 5×5
DB RDL’s – 3×8
A1 Chins – 10×3
A2 Push Ups – 10×10
Bent Over Rows – 3×8
Bridging (secs) – 3×60

Session 2
Strict Lat Pull Down – 5×8
Flat DB Flyes – 5×8
Single Arm DB Row – 5×8
A1 DB Lateral Raises – 3×12
A2 Lying Tricep Extensions – 3×12
A3 Bicep Hammer Curls – 3×12
Step Ups – 5×8

Session 3
Deadlift – 5×5
DB Reverse Lunges – 3×8
A1 Incline Bench Press – 10×3
A2 Inverted Rows – 10×10
Bench Press – 3×8
Bridging (secs) – 3×60

Session 4
Overhead Press – 5×8
Seated Rows – 5×8
Turkish Get Up – 5×8
A1 Plate Shrugs – 3×12
A2 Plate Extensions – 3×12
A3 Plate Curls – 3×12
Single Leg Deadlift – 5×8

The reason that I’m throwing this up is because this is what Jonathon has come back to…or I should say…he’s doing this with a few modifications. This program was not written for powerlifting…I think I gave this to him because he was fat and as weak as American beer. This was basically a program to get him in shape to train. He did other programs of mine after this and he evolved into a powerflifter and strongman competitor during this time. 

Well to cut a long story short…Jonathon is back…back doing this old program and back looking for coaching….he’s still fat…but people who live in gingerbread houses shouldn’t throw muscle milk…so I’m not holding his fatness against him. Thankfully he’s a lot stronger than he was. 

If he wants my help he’s going to have to do more than just give me cash…he’s going to have to entertain us all. I want him to give us a run down of where he is and how he got there. What he’s done training wise. What’s worked for him in the past and what hasn’t. How he found my programs while he was doing them…what he liked and what he didn’t. He can be completely honest because in fairness…if he isn’t honest I doubt that it will be very interesting and if it isn’t interesting I doubt that I’ll be motivated enough to help him properly rather than do what I prefer doing…which is just hide in the shadows and take pot shots at his lame attempts at coaching himself.

So Jonathon…tell us a tale…and make it good.

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6 thoughts on “I hate powerlifting…even more than I hate that other stuff I hated previously

  1. Well, shit, now I have to enterain people. Here’s stats from 4 weeks ago in pounds.

    Squat- 445
    Bench-340
    Deadlift- 500

    Like Will said, me and him met at a conference about 2 years ago. I was lighter then but still fat. I weighed in at a whoping 220 and was probably the last time I was smaller than Will. I was also very weak because I had recently come back to training and was concentrating on getting leaner. But I wanted to do Strongman/Powerlifting. I like Will’s no bullshit kind of attitude, so I figure he’d be perfect to work with.

    He gave me this program, told me to eat more and on I went. Over the comming months (6ish) I went from barely 135 on the front squat to a 1rm of 315. I posted 40 reps at 225 back squat and pulled 475 or something like that with no belt. Because of my dumbass, I neglected things like, warm ups, mobility, stretching so it’s no surprise that I sustained a back injury. I then changed gears for a while (I don’t even want to get started on that one) but needless to say eventually I returned to powerlifting/strongman.

    Well, I returned to a back injury. I spent a good amount of time trying to rehab that injury and return to my old strength. I found a powerlifting team in the mean time and now train with them 3 out of 4 days a week. I competed once (equipped) and posted a 523 squat, 385 bench and 500 deadlift. After that I wanted to get stronger out of the gear because I was/am still weaker than american beer.

    I first did Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1. Good program but it involved me making decisions for myself, which is the whole root cause of the situation. I liked the emphasis on the competition lifts and the intensity regulation. I tend to want to go all out 100% of the time. I used standard westside template in prep for the contest and got burned out quickly. That’s why 5/3/1 was appealing. But I still didn’t feel comfortable with the form on the compeition lifts. After a couple cycles of 5/3/1 I was at another conference and got convinced that Sheiko was the way to go for me. So I did 1 cycle(12 weeks) of Sheiko. I began to feel very comfortable with the form on the main lifts and although each day was hard, it was manageable. Sessions would take a very long time and no back work was included in the program. I also didn’t have enough energy to do much on my off days.

    Unfortunately the only thing that really went up was my bench. Now I hadn’t seen improvement in my bench in a long time so it was nice to see an improvement, but I was more concerned with my squat and deadlift and the fact that they didn’t move. I began the last couple months prepping for the Illinois state meet in March, but I didn’t make a bit of progress in 6 weeks. Frustrated, I returned to something I knew worked. Will’s program was the only one I’ve been on that’s been balanced and has given me consistent and good progress.

    Now the first time through the above program, it fucking sucked. I didn’t know what exercises to go all out on and which ones were more rehab oriented. I also got used to wearing a belt, so I haven’t worn a belt at all for 4 weeks. I had never used a belt until last year, long after my first run with this program. He also chose 80% as the weight I’d use to deadlift and back then the last 2-3 sets were damn ugly. So I lowered it to 75% this time around. It’s still hard but the form is a lot better. I also wanted to concentrate on more quality inverted rows, so I dropped them down to 10×5 this time around. I know what a proper inverted row is now, that helps. I also hate, HATE turkish get ups. My shoulder gets tired way before anything else. Plus 5×8 each side takes a long fuckin time. So this time around, I just used a scap exercise. I also did warm ups, stretching and mobility work. I like that this program had curls in it. When I don’t do curls or flyes my bicep and pec start acting up. I don’t like doing bent over rows especially after squat or deadlifts. My back is fatigued enough. I’d just prefer some other exercise. I suck at directing my own training, thus my need for help. If there are any questions just ask.

    • In training. I believe it was deadlifting. I attribute those injuries mostly the fact that I didn’t much concentrate on mobility, stretching and warm ups. The last injury was about August 07. Since then I’ve made a huge effort to be better at the previously mentioned things.

      I use a switch grip on my deadlift. Left hand over, right hand under. In training I try to pull double overhand as long as I can. But I don’t switch up what hand is under.

  2. Zero,

    Could you not find a decent American coach? You are the reason that the American Powerlifting Industry needs a bail out. Buy American.

    p.s. How much is this guy charging you? I could use some help too. We could split the cost and he will never know.

    • There are probably 2 american coaches I know off that aren’t full of shit or haven’t drank 1 particular kool-aid. Lyle and Dan John. I’m not sure exactly what he’s charging me. He said something about coming over to Ireland so I can perform some services for him. I’m not sure exactly what he means.

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