#TrainStupid Explained

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#TrainStupid Explained



This past weekend I was sent a link from reddit discussing a few of my lifters specifically Nathan Damron and Dylan Cooper. Evidently not everyone agrees with the way that they train, or the hash tag that they use: #TrainStupid. There was also a comment about my comment on BarbellShrugged about the fact that we don’t spend a lot of time under 85% with the Olympic lifts. At first I was super mad, and I wanted to write an article pouncing on these keyboard warriors. I wanted to fire back asking them how many athletes did they plan on sending to the American Open or World Championships because I am sending 40 to the American Open, 1 to the World Championships. I also sent two to the Junior World Championships and two alternates. However, my wife talked me down, and now I am going to try and clear the air about a few things calmly.

Nathan and Dylan are the hardest working athletes that I have ever trained. They love training, and they love weightlifting. They are 100% focused on their goals. I am not even going to explain their goals in this article. If you don’t understand their style, you are for sure not going to understand their goals. Their goals are very high, and that’s all that I am going to say.


Do they do some off the wall things that I don’t 100% agree with? Absolutely! I don’t necessarily agree with squatting 500lb cold, but I totally understand it. Champions are all a little crazy! I was the craziest! Do you really think that people who set out to do things that no one else can or will do really thinks like everybody else? They don’t! And most of you are never going to understand, and that’s ok. You aren’t supposed to, but don’t try to question them. Just sit back and appreciate the things that they are able to do.

The #TrainStupid originates from Coach Zygmunt Smalcerz. He told them that all champions are a little crazy. Of course he was right, but they took it to heart. Yah they push it way past normal. Yes they train when they are hurting. Look man if elite weightlifters only trained when nothing hurt them, they would never train. They always hurt!


Other than a few episodes, these guys train 100% correct. Let me tell you what these guys really do:

1. Their training is well thought out. They go through phases of high volume strength work followed my long blocks of waved volume weightlifting programming. They focus on the lifts Snatch, Clean & Jerk, Squats, and Pulls. They choose assistance work targeting their weaknesses. Their volume will continue to rise in a waved manner until just a few weeks before a major meet. At that point they will taper allowing the body to super compensate.

2. They perform 9-12 sessions per week. I am sure that those will increase over time, as they will start to adapt.
3. They NEVER miss Training! Never!

I have the best group of athletes that I have ever had at the Mash Compound. I love each and every athlete that I coach. Yes I take it personally when people make negative comments about them. These boys are so much more than what you guys see on Instagram. Here’s what I mean:

1. These guy support the entire team. They cheer for every lifter that trains with me. They don’t care if someone Snatches 70k or 170k. They just want their teammates to improve.

2. These guys help the rookie lifters to improve on the daily. They love the sport, and they just want to see it spread to the world.

3. These guys have been loyal to me through a lot of ups and downs over the past year. That loyalty has earned them my total loyalty in return.

I get it! These guys seem like cowboys to a lot of you. That’s ok! Hopefully I have given you all the other side of them. If you don’t believe me, feel free to come train with them any time that you want. The door is always open to the public.

As far as the hate received about my comment that we don’t train below 85% in the lifts, it’s just science. The body perceives less than 85% differently than it perceives 85%+. If you spend the majority of your training under 85% and then decide to go heavy a few weeks before a meet, you will not have the results that you are looking for.

That doesn’t mean the entire workout is 85%+. It just means that we will spend some time around and/or above that percentage. A typical day might look like this:

Snatch 70%/2×2, 75%/2, 80%/2×2, 85%/2×1

This would be a light day performed several weeks out from a competition. Anyone that has competed in weightlifting knows that 85% of the main lifts isn’t heavy if the reps are kept low. If you Snatch 140k, then 119k (85%) isn’t heavy for two singles.

If you need the research, you can always message me on my website MashElite.com. I will be happy to send it to you, but hopefully this will help you understand. I hope that this comes across as positive. I mainly wanted to let you guys know the other side on Nathan and Dylan. I also wanted you to understand that you are not going to understand all the things that they do. Shoot neither will I! Just trust that they are doing exactly what it takes to produce extraordinary results.

Junior Lifters

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  1. Bud says

    Travis….i don’t get it. Why would you give a damn what some people say on the internet? There are 300+ million people in the country, some who think the sky is yellow! I love and look forward to your articles and podcasts and so do many others. Don’t worry about the nut jobs. Don’t let them drain you because they will. You’re above them.
    Best wishes…

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