Category Archives for "Motivation"

Getting Jacked and Healthy at Home

Writing this seems so surreal. I can’t believe that I am writing all of you under these uncertain circumstances. Yet here we are.

I wrote an article last week explaining COVID-19 in detail. While writing that article, I came to realize that unless something drastic changes, all of our lives will be altered forever. Now we can either sit around depressed and feeling sorry for ourselves… or we can adapt to our situation, make the best of it, and come out on the other end better than ever. Personally that’s the route I am taking.

Perspective

The first thing I did over the weekend when I started feeling scared and sorry for myself was think about all the things I am thankful for. God has been so incredibly good to me in this life.

For one thing I have a wife who I absolutely love with all my heart, and I thank God that I actually like being quarantined with her. She fascinates me with her artwork, and I bore her with physiology. At least she pretends to be excited. The one thing in life that keeps me motivated is her belief in me as a husband and father. She knows I will provide, and that keeps me on my toes. She deserves to be a real queen married to the king of some marvelous country. I might not be a king, but I want to be a pretty darn good consolation prize.

I have four children that amaze me every single day of my life. Bailey is 20 years old and growing up much faster than I would like. It’s outrageous watching her become a woman. Rock has athleticism at 5 years old that I didn’t have by twelve. His gymnastic skills and climbing ability is extraordinary, and yet he communicates like a child twice his age. Behr Bradley is so much like his dad that I feel like a part of me will live on forever in that young man. I think he is going to put my strength accomplishments to shame. He’s built like no other three-year-old that I have ever seen in my life. You would think he was crushing the weights already. Finally, there is my little flower, Magnolia. If you follow me on social media, you already know of my one-year-old princess. I can’t begin to tell you how her eyes pierce deep down into my very soul.

I have a best friend, Kevin “KJ’ Jones who has been my ride or die for 35 years. I can’t begin to express how this man has been my rock through so many ups and downs in my life. You see, we both grew up in the mountains of North Carolina with our single mothers. We have both gone on to live extraordinary lives. I am certain we were the only ones who believed in us from the very beginning. He has continued to inspire me in this wild ride of a life, and now we are leaning on each other as we strive to keep our businesses alive and our families taken care of.

I have an amazing team of athletes who most coaches can only dream about. I have Coach Crystal who keeps our team and my business organized and on track. I have a business partner, Chris Mason, who has been my training partner and fellow adventurer since Appalachian State University.

I have a career that takes me around the world teaching people about strength and fitness. I get to hang out with people like Anders Varner and Doug Larson, and I get to travel around the world filming the Barbell Shrugged Podcast. I mean, really I don’t have a lot to be sad about. I am living a life better than I could have ever dreamed about growing up.

Most importantly, I have a God who now I have more time to reflect upon, read about, and worship. It’s times like these that we will either turn to God, or forever abandon His arms. I have chosen to put all my faith and hope in the future in His hands:

Philippians 1:21-22
For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose.

Technology

I advise all of you to first take a few minutes to think about all of the blessings in your life before sitting around and getting depressed about all the things you have no control over. Another thing I recommend is to stop thinking about the things you can’t do. Rather I suggest focusing on what you can do. Instead of thinking about why something won’t work now that most of us are in isolation, I suggest thinking about what needs to happen to make your idea come to life – and use the technology to do so.

I have been coaching my team via Zoom this week. I started looking into the whole thing, and then I had the idea I would coach all of my top athletes from around the world at the same time. Now I can coach Jordan Cantrell, Sandra and Louise from Denmark, Isaac from New Zealand, and the rest of my all-stars from around the world on a daily basis. This awful virus has actually brought my vast team together in a way like never before. I can video their lifts, analyze it with “Coach’s Eye” software, and explain the analysis in real time. This is almost better than in person.

We are here for you during this Coronavirus crisis.

Let us help with customized programming and coaching when you have limited access to gym equipment.

If you are financially able to join our online team for customized programming at this time, we would appreciate your support.

If you are financially struggling during this time, we still want to help. Email us and we will try to help out in any way we can.

* Fully Customized Programming

* Unlimited Technique Analysis

* The Best Coaching in the World

Improvement

After stumbling upon the Zoom win, I decided to think of all the things I want to work on while we are all on lockdown. I mean, what else are we going to do besides get more awesome, folks? I don’t know about you, but I plan on coming out on the other side of this thing better than before it struck our world.

Here are some things that I am currently working on:

  • Getting healthier than ever before
  • Bodyweight workouts to get ‘300’ jacked
  • Improve my cardiovascular system on my bike
  • Write every single day
  • Study anatomy and physiology every single day and write about it at least once per week
  • Improve my content
  • Spend more quality time with my beloved family
  • Take some time to think this life through in a way that I have been wanting to do for forever, but I haven’t had the time.

I want to use my plans to help all of you. I will be writing about my plans and progress every single week. I am going to start by sharing my ideas for workouts at home while you guys are stuck behind four walls with no gym to escape to. Let’s take a look at some options.

At Home Workouts

Limited or No Equipment Workout

Here’s a link to a Video of the Exercises: ==> Video of the Exercises for the Limited Equipment Program

Day 1
3-5 Sets:
1a. Kettlebell/DB/Plate Goblet Squat – 3 x 10
1b. Pushups – 3 x 10
1c. 50 Jump Ropes

3-5 Sets:
2a. Kettlebell/DB/Plate Hinges – 3 x 10
2b. Kettlebell/DB/Plate Lawn Mower Rows – 3 x 10 each arm
2c. Hurdle Side Steps – 3 x 10 (5 each way)

Day 2
3-5 Sets:
1a. Prisoner Squat Jumps – 3 x 5-10
1b. Explosive Pushups – 3 x 5-10
1c. Plank with Band Lat Rows – 3 x 10 each way, eccentric slower than concentric

3-5 Sets:
2a. Kettlebell/DB/Plate Lunges – 3 x 10 each leg
2b. Kettlebell/DB/Plate Strict Presses – 3 x 10
2c. Mountain Climbers – 3 x 20

Day 3
3-5 Sets:
1a. BB/DB/KB/Plate OH Squat – 3 x 10
1b. Plate/KB/DB Front Raises – 3 x 10
1c. KB/Plate/DB Swings – 3 x 10

3-5 Sets:
2a. Pushup with Feet Elevated – 3 x 10
2b. Pullups – 3 x submaximal reps
2c. Lunges – 3 x 10 each leg

Let’s take a look at all the options and ways to regress or progress:

  • Tempo: Tempo is a great way to alter the difficulty of any movement. I would advise that the eccentric (negative) contraction always exceed the duration of the concentric contraction (the up or shortening portion). This is a great tool if you don’t have any equipment. You could add a 5-second to 10-second eccentric and a 5-second to 10-second isometric (pause) contraction in the bottom on any squat, lunge, pushup, pull-up, etc.
  • Sets: I recommended 3-5 sets, but there is no reason to stick to those parameters if the workout is too easy. At the end of the day, it’s all about introducing a stimulus that causes an adaptive response by the body.
  • Repetitions: Add a rep or subtract a rep depending on the difficulty.
  • Time Component: If the workout is too easy, you can always add a time component. By that I mean time your workout, and then have a goal of beating that time in the next week. You could try to add difficulty and time to really challenge yourself.
  • Angle: If you change the angle of an exercise, you will alter the difficulty one way or the other. Let’s look at strict presses for example. If you don’t have a dumbbell, kettlebell, or a plate, you can turn the movement into a bodyweight movement by using handstand pushups. If completely vertical handstand pushups are too hard, walk your hands away from the wall to make them easier. The same goes for pushups, pull-ups, and horizontal rows.
  • Bodyweight Movements instead of Weights: I already explained substituting handstand pushups for strict presses. However, you could perform horizontal rows instead of kettlebell lawnmower rows. You just need a bar or ledge to row on and something to sit your legs on.
  • Household Items or Children as Weights: You can easily turn children, stools, canned goods, gallons of water, books, and filled boxes into external loads. Canned goods are great for shoulder lateral raises. Children are great for squats and rows. Stools are great for carries, and they’re great to elevate one’s feet during pushups.

If you have any questions about the movement, feel free to shoot me a message to info@mashelite.com.

Six-Week Weightlifting with Only Barbell and Squat Stand

This program is designed to be fun, get you stronger, and to slightly peak you in six weeks. I hope this virus situation is over by then. If not, I will write another one. I would like to get us all on the same page and possibly Zoom once per week or once per month (I need to think about the logistics) with Coach Crystal (Mash Elite National Coach), Jordan Cantrell (3 x Team USA World Team Member and USA Weightlifting Level 2 Coach), and/or me. I would like your feedback if you want to do this with us.

If you have any questions about the following movements, feel free to shoot me a message to info@mashelite.com.

Accumulation Phase
Week 1

Day 1
Hang Clean – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 5
Push Jerks – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 5
Strict Press – 10 x 3 at 80%
Plate OH Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd each arm or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Day 2
Hang Snatch below Knee with 4-sec Eccentric – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Back Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Snatch Grip Deadlift with 5-sec Eccentric – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Wide Goodmorning, Stay at a 7-8 RPE – start with 25% of Squat for 3 x 8
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk -3 x 40yd each arm

Day 3
Sntach Grip Push Press – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Closegrip Bench Press – 5 x 10 at 60%
Bentover Rows – 5 x 10 at 60%
Plate Bottom Up Z Press – 3 x 10 each arm

Day 4
Back Squat – 63% x 10 x 10
Rear Leg Elevated Split Squats, Stay at a 7 RPE – 5 x 15 each leg
Unilateral RDLs – 3 x 10
Barbell Zercher Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Week 2

Day 1
Hang Clean – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 5
Push Jerks – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 5
Strict Press – 10 x 4 at 80%
Plate OH Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd each arm or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Day 2
Hang Snatch below Knee with 4-sec Eccentric – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Back Squat with 4-sec eccentric and 2 sec pause in bottom – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Snatch Grip Deadlift with 5-sec Eccentric – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Wide Goodmorning, Stay at a 7-8 RPE – add 5-10 kilos to last week for 3 x 8
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk – 3 x 40yd each arm

Day 3
Sntach Grip Push Press – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Closegrip Bench Press – 5 x 10 at 63%
Bentover Rows – 5 x 10 at 63%
Plate Bottom Up Z Press – 3 x 10 each arm

Day 4
Back Squat – 65% for 10 x 10
Rear Leg Elevated Split Squats, Stay at a 7 RPE – 5 x 15 each leg
Unilateral RDLs – 3 x 10
Barbell Zercher Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Strength Phase
Week 3

Day 1
Warm Up with Jerk Steps from Split – 35% x 3, 45% for 2 x 3
Clean & Jerks – (70% x 3, 75% x 2, 80% x 2) x 2 waves, then work up with singles but no more than 90%
Power Cleans – 70% for 3 x 3, then 3RM
Front Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Clean Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form

Day 2
Warm Up with OH Squat Variations: Heaving Snatch Balance & 1 OH Squat (Both Paused 3 sec in bottom) – Work up to 75% of snatch
Pull to Hip + NHNF Snatch – 60% for 3 x 2+2
Snatch – (70% x 3, 75% x 2, 80% x 2) x 2 waves, then work up with singles but no more than 90%
Power Snatch – 60% for 2 x 3, then work to a 3RM (9 RPE)
Snatch Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form
Superset:
1a. OH Plate Triceps Extension – 3 x 10 reps
1b. Strict Presses – 5RM (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
1c. Plate Front Raises – 3 x 12 reps

Day 3
Snatch Max Effort: Pull to Hips + Snatch + Hang Snatch – Max
Clean & Jerk Max Effort: Clean + Hang Clean + Jerk – Max
Front Squat with Belt – 1RM with 5 sec pause (7 RPE)
Bentover Rows – 5RM (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5

Day 4
Back Squat with Belt:
Set 1 – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)
Set 2 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)
Set 3 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)
Superset:
1a. Push Presses – 5RM (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
1b. Muscle Snatches – 3 x 5, working toward a 9 RPE
Clean Grip Deadlift from 2″ Deficit, Paused at Mid Shin – 3RM (first 2 reps paused 3 sec) 9 RPE, then -10% for 2 x 3 not paused

Week 4

Day 1
Warm Up with Jerk Steps from Split – 35% x 3, 45% for 3 x 3
Clean & Jerks – (73% x 2, 78% x 2, 83% x 1) x 2 waves, then work up with singles but no more than 93%
Power Cleans – 70% for 3 x 3, then 3RM
Front Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Clean Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form

Day 2
Warm Up with OH Squat Variations: Heaving Snatch Balance & 1 OH Squat (Both Paused 3 sec in bottom) – Work up to 78% of snatch
Pull to Hip + NHNF Snatch – 63% for 3 x 2+2
Snatch – (73% x 2, 78% x 2, 83% x 1) x 2 waves, then work up with singles but no more than 93%
Power Snatch – 63% for 2 x 3, then work to a 3RM (9.5 RPE)
Snatch Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form
Superset:
1a. OH Plate Triceps Extension – 3 x 10 reps
1b. Strict Presses – 5RM (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
1c. Plate Front Raises – 3 x 12 reps

Day 3
Snatch Max Effort: Snatch to Hip + Snatch – Max
Clean & Jerk Max Effort: Clean + Front Squat + Jerk – Max
Front Squat with Belt – 1RM with 5 sec pause (8 RPE)
Bentover Rows – 5RM (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5

Day 4
Back Squat with Belt:
Set 1 – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 2 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 3 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Superset:
1a. Push Presses – 5RM (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
1b. Muscle Snatches – 3 x 5, working toward a 9.5 RPE
Clean Grip Deadlift from 2″ Deficit, Paused at Mid Shin – 3RM (first 2 reps paused 3 sec) 9.5 RPE, then -10% for 2 x 3 not paused

Week 5

Day 1
Warm Up with Jerk Steps from Split – 35% x 3, 40% for 2 x 3
Clean & Jerks – (70% x 3, 75% x 2, 80% x 2) x 2 waves
Power Cleans – 75% for 3 x 3
Front Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 90% of 5RM for 3 x 5
Clean Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form, stop one set early

Day 2
Warm Up with OH Squat Variations: Heaving Snatch Balance & 1 OH Squat (Both Paused 3 sec in bottom) – Work up to 80% of snatch
Pull to Hip + NHNF Snatch – 60% for 2 x 2+2
Snatch – (70% x 3, 75% x 2, 80% x 2) x 2 waves
Power Snatch – 65% for 3 x 3
Snatch Pulls – Work to a heavy triple with perfect form
Superset:
1a. OH Plate Triceps Extension – 3 x 10 reps
1b. Strict Presses – 3RM (9 RPE), then work to single max
1c. Plate Front Raises – 3 x 12 reps

Day 3
Snatch Max Effort: Snatch – 2RM
Clean & Jerk Max Effort: 2 Clean + 1 Jerk – Max
Front Squat with Belt – 1RM with 3 sec pause (9.5 RPE)
Bentover Rows – 90% of 5RM for 3 x 5

Day 4
Back Squat with Belt:
Set 1 – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 2 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 3 (add 5 Kilos to each weight if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Superset:
1a. Push Presses – 90% of 5RM for 3 x 5
1b. Muscle Snatches – 3 x 5, no more than 8 RPE
Clean Grip Deadlift (no deficit), Paused at Mid Shin – 3RM (first rep paused 2 sec) 9.5 RPE

Week 6

Day 1
Warm Up with Jerk Steps from Split – 35% x 3, 45% for 3 x 3
Clean & Jerks – (75% x 2, 80% x 1, 85% x 1) x 2 waves, then work up to a potential opener
Power Cleans – Max single, no misses
Front Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5

Day 2
Warm Up with OH Squat Variations: Heaving Snatch Balance & 1 OH Squat – Work up to 70% of snatch
Pull to Hip + NHNF Snatch – 65% for 3 x 1+1
Snatch – (75% x 3, 80% x 1, 85% x 1) x 2 waves, then work up to a potential opener
Power Snatch – Max single
Superset:
1a. OH Plate Triceps Extension – 3 x 10 reps
1b. Plate Front Raises – 3 x 12 reps

Day 3
Snatch Max Effort: Snatch – Max
Clean & Jerk Max Effort: Clean & Jerk – Max
Bentover Rows – 5RM

Day 4
Back Squat with Belt – 1RM
Push Presses – 3RM (9 RPE), then work to single max
Clean Grip Deadlift – 1RM (no deficit or pauses)

We are here for you during this Coronavirus crisis.

Let us help with customized programming and coaching when you have limited access to gym equipment.

If you are financially able to join our online team for customized programming at this time, we would appreciate your support.

If you are financially struggling during this time, we still want to help. Email us and we will try to help out in any way we can.

* Fully Customized Programming

* Unlimited Technique Analysis

* The Best Coaching in the World

Six-Week Powerlifting with Only Barbell, Squat Stand, and Bench

Here’s one for all you powerlifters.

If you have any questions about the following movements, feel free to shoot me a message to info@mashelite.com.

Accumulation Phase
Week 1

Day 1
Back Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Snatch Grip Deadlift with 5-sec Eccentric – 5RM (7 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Wide Goodmorning, Stay at a 7-8 RPE – Start with 25% of squat for 3 x 8
BB Lunges – 3 x 10 reps each leg, working toward an 8 RPE

Day 2
Wide Grip Bench Press (Wider than Normal Comp Grip) – 10 x 3 at 80%
Incline DB or BB Presses – 10RM (9 RPE) and then -10% for 2 x 10
Pull-Ups – 4 x submaximal reps, switch grips each set (weakest to strongest)
Dips or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 4 x 10, working toward a 9 RPE

Day 3
Back Squat – 63% for 10 x 10
Slider Leg Curls – 4 x 10 reps

Day 4
Closer than Normal Bench Press – 63% for 10 x 10
BB Bentover Rows – 5 x 10 at 60%
DB or KB Upright Rows – 5 x 10
Barbell Zercher Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Week 2

Day 1
Back Squat with 4-sec Eccentric and 2-sec Pause in Bottom – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Snatch Grip Deadlift with 5-sec Eccentric – 5RM (8 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 5
Wide Goodmorning, Stay at a 7-8 RPE – Add 5-10 kilos from last week’s weight for 3 x 8
BB Lunges – 3 x 10 reps each leg, working toward an 9 RPE

Day 2
Wide Grip Bench Press (Wider than Normal Comp Grip) – 10 x 4 at 80%
Incline DB or BB Presses – 10RM (9.5 RPE) and then -10% for 2 x 10
Pull-Ups – 4 x submaximal reps, switch grips each set (weakest to strongest)
Dips or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 4 x 10, working toward a 9.5 RPE

Day 3
Back Squat – 65% for 10 x 10
Slider Leg Curls – 4 x 10 reps

Day 4
Closer than Normal Bench Press – 65% for 10 x 10
BB Bentover Rows – 5 x 10 at 65%
DB or KB Upright Rows – 5 x 10
Barbell Zercher Carries or Holds – 3 x 25yd or 3 x 10-15 sec holds

Strength Phase
Week 3

Day 1
Back Squat:
Set 1 – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (73% x 6)

Deadlifts (All Eccentrics Slower than Concentrics):
Set 1 – (88% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 4)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (88% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 4)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (88% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 4)
Wide Goodmornings – 3 x 5, starting with 30% of back squat
Plate Rear Leg Elevated Split Squats – 4 x 5 each leg, working up to an 8 RPE

Day 2
Bench Press – 3RM (all reps paused 3 sec) (9 RPE), then -10% for 4 x 3 (no pauses, last set is 3+ with 1 rep in reserve)
Closegrip BB Floor Presses – 5RM (9 RPE), then -15% for 4 x 5 (last set is 5+ with 1 rep in reserve)
BB Bentover Rows Paused 2 sec on Sternum – 5RM, then -10% for 4 x 5
Plate or DB Power Cleans for External Rotation – 4 x 10

Day 3
Back Squat with Belt – 3RM (1st rep paused 3 sec) (9 RPE), then -10% for 4 x 3 (no pauses)
Clean Grip Deadlift from 2″ Deficit, Paused at Knee, Eccentric Slower than Concentric – 3RM (first 2 reps paused 3 sec) (9 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 3 (not paused)
Carpet Slider Leg Curls – 3 x 10 paused 2 sec at the top
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk or Hold with Barbell – 3 x 25 yd per arm or 10-15 sec hold per arm, working to a near maximum

Day 4
Bench Press:
Set 1 – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (70% x 6)
Set 2 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (70% x 6)
Set 3 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (88% x 2), rest 2 minutes and then (70% x 6+ with one rep in reserve)
Barbell, Curl Bar, DBs, or Plates Skull Crushers (aka Nose Breakers) – 6 x 8
superset with:
Band Pushdowns or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 6 x 10
(rest 30 sec between sets)
BB Curls – 3 x 10

Week 4

Day 1
Back Squat:
Set 1 – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)

Deadlifts (All Eccentrics Slower than Concentrics):
Set 1 – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 4)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 4)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 4)
Wide Goodmornings – 3 x 5, just progress about 2-5 kilos from last week
Plate Rear Leg Elevated Split Squats – 4 x 5 each leg, working up to a 9 RPE

Day 2
Bench Press – 3RM (first rep paused 3 sec) (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 4 x 3 (no pauses, last set is 3+ with 1 rep in reserve)
Closegrip BB Floor Presses – 5RM (9.5 RPE), then -15% for 4 x 5 (last set is 5+ with 1 rep in reserve)
BB Bentover Rows Paused 2 sec on Sternum – 5RM, then -10% for 4 x 5
Plate or DB Power Cleans for External Rotation – 4 x 10

Day 3
Back Squat with Belt – 3RM (1st rep paused 3 sec) (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 4 x 3 (no pauses)
Clean Grip Deadlift from 2″ Deficit, Paused at Knee, Eccentric Slower than Concentric – 3RM (first 2 reps paused 3 sec) (9.5 RPE), then -10% for 2 x 3 (not paused)
Carpet Slider Leg Curls – 4 x 10 paused 2 sec at the top
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk or Hold with Barbell – 3 x 25 yd per arm or 10-15 sec hold per arm, trying to beat last week in load, time, or distance

Day 4
Bench Press:
Set 1 – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 2 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5)
Set 3 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (90% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (75% x 5+ with one rep in reserve)
Barbell, Curl Bar, DBs, or Plates Skull Crushers (aka Nose Breakers) – 6 x 8
superset with:
Band Pushdowns or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 6 x 10
(rest 30 sec between sets)
BB Curls – 3 x 10

Week 5

Day 1
Back Squat:
Set 1 – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)

Deadlifts (All Eccentrics Slower than Concentrics):
Set 1 – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (80% x 3)
Set 2 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (80% x 3)
Set 3 (add 5-10 Kilos to the 1 rep set if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (80% x 3)
Wide Goodmornings – 3 x 5, same weight as last week
Plate Rear Leg Elevated Split Squats – 4 x 5 each leg, working up to a 7 RPE

Day 2
Bench Press – 1RM (paused 3 sec), then -15% for 3 x 3 (all paused 3 sec)
Closegrip BB Floor Presses – 5RM, then -15% for 2 x 5 (last set is 5+ with 1 rep in reserve)
BB Bentover Rows Paused 2 sec on Sternum – 5RM, then -15% for 5+ with 1 rep i reserve
Plate or DB Power Cleans for External Rotation – 4 x 10

Day 3
Back Squat with Belt – 90% of 3RM for 3 x 3 with no pauses
Clean Grip Deadlift Paused at Knee (No Deficit), Eccentric Slower than Concentric – 3RM (first rep paused 2 sec) (9.5 RPE)
Carpet Slider Leg Curls – 3 x 10 paused 2 sec at the top
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk or Hold with Barbell – 3 x 25 yd per arm or 10-15 sec hold per arm, submaximal effort for slight taper

Day 4
Bench Press:
Set 1 – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 2 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Set 3 (add 3-5 Kilos to heavy set only if possible) – (93% x 1), rest 2 minutes and then (78% x 5)
Barbell, Curl Bar, DBs, or Plates Skull Crushers (aka Nose Breakers) – 4 x 8
superset with:
Band Pushdowns or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 4 x 10
(rest 30 sec between sets)
BB Curls – 3 x 10

Week 6

Day 1
Back Squat – 1RM
Deadlifts – 1RM

Day 2
Bench Press – Work up to 3 singles, paused 3 sec with 2-3 minutes between sets
Closegrip BB Floor Presses – 90% of 5RM for 3 x 5
BB Bentover Rows Paused 2 sec on Sternum – 90% of 5RM for 3 x 5
Plate or DB Power Cleans for External Rotation – 3 x 10

Day 3
Back Squat with Belt – 20RM Challenge (who can perform a 20RM with the highest percentage of their max?)
Deadlift (Use Your Opposite Stance: Sumo vs. Conventional) – 1RM
Carpet Slider Leg Curls – 3 x 12 paused 2 sec at the top
Unilateral Farmer’s Walk or Hold with Barbell – 3 x 25 yd per arm or 10-15 sec hold per arm, working to a maximum

Day 4
Bench Press – 1RM
Barbell, Curl Bar, DBs, or Plates Skull Crushers (aka Nose Breakers) – 6 x 8
superset with:
Band Pushdowns or Plate OH Triceps Extension – 6 x 10
(rest 30 sec between sets)
BB Curls – 3 x 10

Other Measures

Well there you go. You have six weeks of programming to get you through this rough time. A few things that I would like to add are:

  • Get your sleep
  • Clean up your nutrition to maximize your immune system
  • I recommend Vitamin C and Vitamin D (especially since we are inside so much nowadays)
  • Focus on the things that you can do rather than the things that you can’t do
  • Reflect on the things that you are thankful for
  • Pray (or meditate if you’re not a believer)
  • Love on your family
  • Tell the important people in your life that you love and care for them

Love You Guys

I hope this whole thing is a lesson to all of us that the world is a small place. We are not so different. The people in China, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Colombia, Russia, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Thailand, Cuba, and all over the world are suffering. It’s not about the United States versus China or anywhere else in the world. It’s about loving each other and caring for each other, and that’s about it. If you think it’s about money and acquiring things, take a look at famous people who run their lives into the ground and/or commit suicide.

If you’re a Christian, I really don’t understand turning everything into the United States versus the world. I don’t remember God telling us anywhere in the Bible to have our identity in our country. Did I miss that passage? Yes, render to Caesar what is Caesar’s. Otherwise, love everyone like you love yourself. So much more will be accomplished, including glorifying God. This is just my take on it all.

I love all of you. I hope to communicate more with all of you. If you decide to perform one of these programs, I would like your feedback – Would you enjoy a ‘Zoom’ call with Coach Crystal (Mash Elite National Coach), Jordan Cantrell (3 x Team USA World Team Member and USA Weightlifting Level 2 Coach), and/or me?

If so, email us at info@mashelite.com and I will let you know what we decide.

We are here for you during this Coronavirus crisis.

Let us help with customized programming and coaching when you have limited access to gym equipment.

If you are financially able to join our online team for customized programming at this time, we would appreciate your support.

If you are financially struggling during this time, we still want to help. Email us and we will try to help out in any way we can.

* Fully Customized Programming

* Unlimited Technique Analysis

* The Best Coaching in the World

Injury Recovery and Full Body Movement with MoveU’s Andrew Dettelbach – The Barbell Life 293

You may recognize Andrew Dettelbach as the crazy shirtless guy from MoveU.

But his story goes so much deeper. After a severely herniated disc, Andrew didn’t get the recommended surgery but instead rehabbed his body.

He learned about movement, he learned about mobility, and he learned about how physical therapy gets it wrong sometimes.

Now he’s stronger and fitter than ever.

So if you’ve ever dealt with injury, this podcast is an inspiration.

If you want to avoid injury, this podcast is packed with education as well.

Protocols for Aches and Pains, Muscular Imbalances & Recovery

Work Harder. Train Longer. Prevent Injury.

Prevent injury, reduce pain and maintain joint health with Travis's specific corrections for your individual muscular imbalances.

LISTEN IN TO TODAY’S PODCAST AS WE TALK ABOUT:

  • Why physical therapy gets people off on the wrong foot
  • Taking a full body approach no matter what
  • How Andrew handles his hypermobility
  • Social media tips from MoveU
  • The early warning signs of Andrew’s injury
  • and more…

The Most Inspiring Story Ever

On Wednesday of this week, one of my best friends in the world became a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine.

Her name is Kristi Mason, and she is 46 years old. I met her along with her husband Chris “Ox” Mason (who is also my business partner and one of my best friends) while I was in college at Appalachian State University. I was the wild one, and they were in love. We did everything together.

Our History Together

The three of us trained together at Appalachian Fitness Center. It was the heyday of my lifting career. They were into bodybuilding at the time, but we supported each other through it all. I went to their shows and they traveled with me to my competitions. It was one of the best times of my life. I look back on those times, and all I remember is loving every second of it. I had found a sport that was giving me everything I had been missing in life – stability and two friends who supported me and loved me (the real me) unconditionally.

One day after an amazing training session, we were sitting around together and talking about our love of the barbell. I explained that it gave me back everything I put into it. The harder I worked, the stronger I became. If I wanted to get stronger, I lifted heavy and often. If I wanted to get jacked, I added in accessory work for the pump. As I was explaining all of this to Kristi and Chris, I started crying uncontrollably like a baby. It was at this moment I knew exactly who I was and what I wanted in life. It was moments like this that Kristi and Chris shared with me, and that’s why they know aspects of me no one else will ever understand.

They were there during my time at the Olympic Training Center, and they were there during my climb to the top of powerlifting. They were there for every Gold Medal and every World Record. They were there when it was all over as well. That was the darkest time of my life, and they were there. They have always been there for me. When most people deserted me, they stayed by my side. For that, I will always love them both until the lights go out.

Working for the Dream

About six years ago, Kristi decided to begin the long journey of becoming a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. She was over 40 years old when she decided to begin the impossible. It wasn’t only Kristi’s journey – Chris was now solely responsible for paying the bills and taking care of their 10-acre ranch. He had just started a new business: Training for Warriors Winston-Salem. They had both been pharmaceutical sales reps making hefty salaries with great benefits, and now Chris was making the only salary and providing his own benefits. Now are you seeing there are two heroes in this story? I watched it all from afar with admiration for them both.

People love to dream. They love to talk about what they would like to do or what they should do. Nothing drives me crazier than listening to people talk about “could have” and “should have.” Nothing is more dysfunctional than those phrases. However this isn’t a story about people mumbling those phrases, growing old, and dying with regrets.

We are here for you during this Coronavirus crisis.

Let us help with customized programming and coaching when you have limited access to gym equipment.

If you are financially able to join our online team for customized programming at this time, we would appreciate your support.

If you are financially struggling during this time, we still want to help. Email us and we will try to help out in any way we can.

* Fully Customized Programming

* Unlimited Technique Analysis

* The Best Coaching in the World

In this story, our heroes dream an amazing dream, make a plan, and commit to that plan. She started out taking prerequisites and retaking a few classes that she didn’t do so well in while at college. She was crushing it. Then it was time to apply. This was a scary time in our story because veterinary school is harder to get into than medical school. However, she did get in, and the first step of her dream was now a reality.

Now it was time for the work to begin. Kristi spent all of her time going to class and studying. One thing I didn’t mention was that the vet school was four hours away. Not only was Chris taking care of the ranch and working to pay all the bills, but also he was alone. Their ranch is totally secluded with no visible neighbors. That solitude is great when your wife is with you, but it can get pretty old day-in and day-out.

He held it together the best he could. He battled depression, and he battled a volatile economy with a risky business. He wanted to quit, but he didn’t want to let his wife down. He had the weight of the world on his shoulder, but this past Wednesday that weight was lifted. Kristi passed her boards and became Dr. Kristi Mason. I have never been more proud of anyone, and I am referencing both of them because this was dream realized by the two of them acting as one. We can all stand to learn from this amazing task.

The lesson

Let’s look at a few of the things we should learn from this grand achievement:

  • Marriage is teamwork. If you find yourself saying I, me, and mine too much, you somehow missed the point of marriage. We are supposed to love and support each other. It’s not about winning arguments, or your partner making you happy. If you focus on loving your wife, I promise you will always get tenfold in return.
  • Dreams are meant to become reality. There isn’t an age limit on dreams. Sometimes people act like nothing amazing happens after 30. When we’re young, nothing is impossible. However the older we get, the more restrictions we put on ourselves. Why? My life gets more exciting each decade, and your life can too. The key is having the courage to go over the things in life. I think of it like this. God created the universe. He put the Earth just far enough from the sun and moon to maintain everything. He created the human body with such complexity that I am amazed each day studying Anatomy and Physiology. If He created us in His image, do you really think He designed us to be cowards? No way.
  • Why are you afraid? Have you ever asked yourself that simple question? What’s the worst case scenario? It might not work. So what? You sure won’t be lying in your deathbed talking about what you could have done and should have done. Instead you will be lying there telling your grandkids about living a life of adventure and excitement. Existing isn’t living – at least in my world!

Kristi and Chris did a thing. They are living their lives. They are inspiring every single person around them, including me. It’s Kristi who first put the idea of getting my PhD in my head. She inspired her crazy friend, and now she will live a life that she has been dreaming about because she wasn’t afraid to go for it. I see a lot of so-called ‘influencers’ talking about living a courageous life. Kristi didn’t talk about it. She just went out there and did it.

And to Kristi, this is my way of saying I am so proud of you and your hubby. I love you both very much, and I hope that you both realize you have inspired me to be a better person for over two decades. Now that I have shared you with the world, you can inspire the world as well.

My Desire for Exercise Science Students

Before I get into my vision for the field of exercise science, I want to first tell all of you how excited I am for the future.

A dream of beginning a new university program is finally coming to fruition after 7 years. In the fall of 2020, I will begin my position as Head Coach of the Lenoir-Rhyne University Weightlifting Team. Recently I took my team to see the facilities and to check out campus. We even had the chance to train in our new home, and I think that I speak for all of us when I say we loved it. It felt like an Olympic Training Center, which is exactly what I am going for.

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On Tuesday I took the majority of our team to see what I’ve been working on for the last six months. If you take into consideration how long I’ve been planning and dreaming of a University Weightlifting Program, it’s more like 7 years. In this video you will see the main weight room complete with: Inverse Leg Curls, Reverse-Hypers, Glute-Ham Developers, @westsidebarbellofficial Belt Squat Machine, racking system with all the toys including jammer arms, monkey bars for days, every specialty bar you can imagine, turf area, multiple @assaultairbike air runners, air bikes, ski ergs, and of course we will have all the nice kilo bumpers and awesome bars. . There’s also a nutrition station as you exit for athletes to grab their post-workout shakes. . The Athletic Training Room is my favorite complete with Cold Tub and Hot Tub, @rapidreboot ‘s, and Athletic Trainers of course. The goal is to get each athlete an individual recovery plan. . You’ll also see the spillover room that is also beautiful for individual two-a-day sessions. . Another thing is the Heated Indoor Saltwater Pool. For all of you CrossFit Athletes that can also Snatch and Clean & Jerk well, I am 100% interested in having you, and I am totally fine with you continuing to do both sports weightlifting and CrossFit. Therefore indirectly creating the first University CrossFit Program. . If you’re interested in attending and looking into scholarship opportunities, you can DM me right here. Then I will give you my email. . FYI to all the coaches, we want you to remain the #1 coach of record and can keep your club name except during the University Nationals. . I want this to be a Team USA Program, and nothing to do with Team Mash. I hope we can work together to give athletes opportunities within the sport. Therefore giving them a reason to pursue our beloved sport versus one of the other sport like football or basketball. . Ask any questions right here as well, and I will answer. . @shruggedcollective @andersvarner @usaweightlifting #usaw #weightlifting #strengthandconditioning #powerlifting @alex_j_koch @lenoirrhyne @bearssports #lenoirrhyneweightlifting #crossfit

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I want the athletes on my team to have everything they need to succeed. However there is much more that I want for them. I want them to leave Lenoir-Rhyne with a degree and a future. I am also beginning the long process of working toward my PhD. Guys, I haven’t been in school in over 25 years. Luckily, Mash Elite Performance has kept my nose buried in research, learning, and writing of course. I definitely feel more prepared than when I first graced Appalachian State University with my presence. All I cared about back then was football, lifting weights, and girls. Now I want to make a difference in as big a way as possible.

The staff at LR is incredibly progressive and forward thinking. When I am around Dr. Alex Koch and Dr. Keith Leiting, I feel like the possibilities are endless. I’m excited about the research we will be capable of performing with elite weightlifters under our roof. However there is something that intrigues me even more. I want to make sure our exercise science students have futures in their chosen field.

BUSINESS AND BRAND

The buzz around the world lately is that college isn’t as important as we once thought. People are either taking up a trade, starting work right away, or skipping school to start their own business. With my goal of becoming a professor, I want to be a part of the solution. Exercise Science is comprised of students who are intrigued with health and fitness, and most of them simply want to help others. To me this is an admirable major filled with good people, and I want to help the students at Lenoir-Rhyne put their passion to work.

My dream is to integrate major specific business skills within the exercise science curriculum. I want to teach our students:

  • How to brand themselves with social media
  • How to create content to help others via podcasts, blogs, or vlogs
  • Networking skills
  • Entrepreneurial skills to develop their own businesses online or brick and mortar
  • The actual job search itself

One thing I have learned listening to Gary Vaynerchuk is that brand is just about everything when it comes to one’s career. I am not just talking about entrepreneurs. I’m also talking about those want a job as a strength and conditioning coach or even as a personal trainer. In a competitive field, you have got to do something that sets you apart, and then you have to let the rest of the world know about it.

If a student begins the process during their freshman year, they will be able to build quite the brand by the time they are seniors. If they want to focus more on their futures than partying, we all know there is plenty of time to grow a brand and a following. I am not talking about four years of posting pics with your friends. I mean four years of sharing all that you are learning or sharing nutrition and exercise tips. The goal is that you graduate being known as that guy – with that guy being whoever you want to become in this noble field.

If you desire to help people with the knowledge you are gaining in your studies, you don’t have to wait until you graduate. You can start creating content on your favorite aspects of exercise science right now. The key is discovering your favorite way to produce content – whether it be podcasting, writing, or vlogging. Of course you don’t want to write about something that you don’t totally understand. Stick to the truths that you are learning along the way. The goal is to focus on the niche you enjoy and the particular aspect of exercise science you know the best (nutrition, speed training, athletic performance, etc.). Remember the goal is to become that guy or that gal in the field.

THE NEWEST EVOLUTION OF MASH PROGRAMMING

The latest and greatest methods from Travis Mash as he continues to innovate Mash Mafia programming.

Weightlifting - Powerlifting - Super Total

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Getting a job? Starting a business?

Here’s the truth regarding how one gets most jobs in the exercise science world: it’s whom you know. It might not be the right thing, but it’s a harsh reality. But there is an art to networking. Way too many people who are trying to network come across as annoying and desperate. It has to be a natural thing. The best people to network with are people you jive with. Then there is a high probability that your new acquaintance will introduce you to other likeminded people – and the next thing you know you will have a circle of folks that you love. There’s more to it, but you get the idea. We just need to make sure that our talented students get the idea.

And let’s not forget that many students can create their own jobs. Most college students simply don’t understand they aren’t held hostage by the hopes of someone hiring them anymore. This is the age of the young entrepreneur. However, it’s also the age of the broke entrepreneur. These young folks need guidance and someone who can be brutally honest because everyone isn’t cut out for entrepreneurship. If you’re lazy, you’re doomed to fail. If you aren’t self-motivated, you are doomed to fail. If you don’t have thick skin, you’re doomed to fail because everyone is going to tell you that you’re crazy.

The job will be to assess the students and see who is and who isn’t cut out for entrepreneurship. If they are, the next job would be to see what ideas they might have, and then give them direction. The key will be to get this going as soon as possible, so they can use their time in college to brand their future business. For example, maybe they love working with weight loss clients. They should spend their extra time writing and/or creating video of the dangers of obesity and making wise choices at the grocery store. Then they will graduate having created a solid following that they can begin to market to.

The most obvious place that these graduates need help is finding actual jobs. Most of them have no idea about the opportunities that are afforded them. For example, they could look for something in the strength and conditioning field, personal trainer, corporate wellness, physical therapist assistant, chiropractic assistant, personal trainer on a cruise ship (this is a real thing), or in cardiac rehab. The list goes on, but the key is informing the students and helping them map out a path toward their goal job.

The good thing is that Dr. Alex Koch and I have already been throwing around ideas. Since he helped me start this whole new program, I guess we believe anything is possible at this point. If you are looking for a school right now, you might want to consider what kind of job placement record they have as a school. I can promise we are going to make some changes you will all be reading about very soon. I want all of our students leaving Lenoir-Rhyne University ready to attack their chosen field and confident they made the right choice in a university.

If you are interested in our new University Weightlifting Program at Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory, NC, message me on here or shoot an email to info@mashelite.com. I will have a Lenoir-Rhyne email within days, which will be Travis.Mash@LR.com.

Making and Surviving the NFL with Tommy Bohanon – The Barbell Life 288

If you’ve been around me long enough, you’ve heard me talk about Tommy Bohanon.

He was the most powerful athlete I have ever personally trained. He was an absolute beast of an NFL player, and programming for him was my thrill.

Tommy has now retired from the NFL – but he hasn’t slowed down. He’s still training, he’s still reaching for his goals, and he’s still making a difference in the lives of many through his charitable foundation and through his newfound career.

So listen in to this podcast to hear about it – and also to hear Tommy’s insight on the best way to make the NFL and survive the NFL.

MASH FILES: LEARN FROM THE PROGRAM OF AN NFL BEAST

Travis Mash shows you all the details and reasoning behind the recent off-season program for Tommy Bohanon (starting fullback for the Jacksonville Jaguars)

Then you can use these principles to individualize your own programs to fit an athlete's strengths, weaknesses, age, gender, sport demands, and unique response to training.

LISTEN IN TO TODAY’S PODCAST AS WE TALK ABOUT:

  • How you should prepare in high school if you want to play college football
  • Insane skills at reading the opponent’s position at the line
  • The adjustment from high school to college to NFL football
  • Hidden dangers in the NFL and how many players end up ruining their lives
  • Have concussions changed the game? (And how Tommy avoided ever having one)
  • and more…

Is Competition Good or Bad?

It’s an interesting era we are in.

I am not sure if this is the point where I am old and simply blaming a generation for the shortcomings I am experiencing, or if this is a real thing all over. Let me dive right in, so I can catch you up on what I am talking about.

Competition – Then and Now

When I was a young strength athlete, I loved competition. I drove 90 minutes each way twice per week just so I could train with someone stronger than me. Eventually I hooked up fulltime with Chris “Ox” Mason, which is when I became my strongest. Ox and I were in the same weight class most of the time and sometimes one weight class apart. We were competitive with each other in the gym but remained the best of friends outside the gym. Heck, inside the gym we helped each other. Basically we were each other’s coach.

Westside Barbell is legendary because most people think Louie Simmons is some kind of magical programmer. The secret is that he placed a bunch of lions in the same room – and the toughest lion became the alpha. There were battles within the gym, but they were family outside of the gym. This arrangement reminds me of my home with my two sons, Rock and Behr. They fight all the time, but they won’t let anyone else pick on the other.

Recently I have noticed in my gym, as well as other gyms across America, that athletes don’t like having someone in their own weight class training with them day in and day out. I have witnessed arguments break out and cultures destroyed over this. Instead of complaining to all of you during this entire article, I am going to explain the way it should work and the advantage that competition brings. Hopefully this will enlighten some of the athletes out there so we can use this tactic to our advantage as a country.

Attitude of Excellence

Why do you think wrestling programs like the one you will find at Penn State University are so awesome? Why do countries build Olympic Training Centers? Yes, in both cases you are trying to give your best athletes the best coach and conditions – but there is another reason that trumps all the rest. If you toss the best athletes in the same room with a great coach, you can rest assured the best athlete will make their way to the top. Not only that, even the athletes who aren’t the best at first will get better. The ones who were never going to make it in the first place will fade away, and that’s fine too. You will either become the absolute best you can be – or you will realize it wasn’t meant to be.

I had an athlete several years ago named Michael Waters. He was a two-time 4A state champion here in North Carolina. He was a rockstar in this state. He could have gone to several collegiate programs in America and started right away, but he chose Penn State. He wanted to become the absolute best wrestler he could possibly be. He knew Cael Sanderson, the Penn State head coach, and the amazing tradition at Penn State would do just that. Michael is now serving in the Army Special Forces, which fits this attitude of excellence.

Here’s what you have to ask yourself:

  • Do I want to be the best athlete I can possibly be?
  • Do I want to be the best athlete on the team?

We are here for you during this Coronavirus crisis.

Let us help with customized programming and coaching when you have limited access to gym equipment.

If you are financially able to join our online team for customized programming at this time, we would appreciate your support.

If you are financially struggling during this time, we still want to help. Email us and we will try to help out in any way we can.

* Fully Customized Programming

* Unlimited Technique Analysis

* The Best Coaching in the World

Competitive Environment

If your coach recruits someone in your same weight class or who plays your same position, that doesn’t mean they think less of you. It doesn’t mean they don’t believe in your abilities. It doesn’t mean they love you any less. They are simply trying to create a competitive atmosphere conducive to forming champions.

The way you react to the recruitment of new athletes says a lot about you as an athlete. If you fade away from a battle during practice, you will fade away during a battle in a real competition or game. The best athletes in the world thrive on competition. Guys like Michael Jordan will thrive when threatened or pushed. If this isn’t you, you will need to embrace competition more than the others until you are comfortable in competitive situations. Otherwise, realize you will never be a great athlete. I know these are tough words, but I am being brutally honest. However, it’s never too late to change, so you aren’t locked in to a life of losing.

Here’s what athletes should experience from competitive environments:

  • The best athlete with the best attitude will get even better as they rise to the top.
  • Athletes will feed off of each other, especially during max effort days or scrimmages.
  • Athletes will learn from each other.
  • Athletes will encourage each other during training.
  • Athletes will encourage each other outside the gym.
  • The athletes who aren’t necessarily winning right away are still getting better as they seek to keep up and surpass.

Peer Pressure

First, if you are the top dog and your coach recruits someone in your weight class or in your position, don’t get offended. You should be excited because that new person is going to elevate your level of play to a place you didn’t believe was possible. This is going to make your next meet or game way easier than ever before. Remember this: if you can’t beat this person in training, you sure aren’t going to beat them at a competition. Champions always elevate their level of play based on the competition in front of them, and now you have the advantage of having that stimulus daily versus only on game day.

This is a life lesson, which is exactly what sport is supposed to be. What if you are the top accountant at a firm, and then one day your boss hires someone with equal or slightly better skills? Are you going to quit or get mad at your boss – or are you going to use the competition to raise your level of play? Parents, remember that sports are designed to prepare your children for life – not simply to showcase their skills to make you look cool in front of your family and friends. This is something most parents always forget.

If you have a max effort day or highly competitive day, athletes will feed off of each other. If one is feeling sluggish, they will elevate to match their competition. If you want to see athletes surpass never-dreamed-of levels, put them in a room filled with lions. The weak will get stronger, and the strong will get stronger than ever! This environment will make the competition, game, or match seem easy – just ask the Penn State wrestlers.

Peer Support

One of my favorite aspects of competitive teams is that athletes will learn from each other. Coaches can’t be everything to everyone. There are going to be times when coaches are struggling to fix flaws in their athletes. Sometimes hearing it from a peer is easier to accept and assimilate than when it comes from a coach. I have seen it happen several times. Sometimes athletes will struggle with an issue their peer has already overcome, so their peer can explain how to overcome the obstacle both physically and mentally.

Sometimes training is hard. We have all experienced the moments in training that felt like we were in the middle of a desert all alone. This is a lonely place to be, so having a teammate look at you and say that it’s going to be okay is a definite asset. It’s easier to endure trials when you’re not alone.

Enduring with teammates in the gym is much easier than overcoming the temptations out of the gym. Champions are not made inside the gym. Everyone trains hard, but the champions are the ones who make the right choices outside the gym. If you create a culture filled with focused and determined athletes, you will also form a culture of athletes who will keep each other accountable. We are all tempted once in a while to break our diet, drink that beer, or stay up late. It’s nice to be surrounded by athletes who will help keep you focused on the primary goal.

THE NEWEST EVOLUTION OF MASH PROGRAMMING

The latest and greatest methods from Travis Mash as he continues to innovate Mash Mafia programming.

Weightlifting - Powerlifting - Super Total

Garage Gym Warrior - Functional Fitness - Strength and Conditioning

If you are in a gym or on a team with two other athletes who are just as good or better, don’t get upset or get mad at the coach. This isn’t a bad thing. Whether you end up being the number one or not, I promise that you will get better in those conditions. You will work as hard as possible in an attempt to get ahead or stay ahead. That’s the point of competition – it will make you better.

I am not sure what has happened with today’s athletes not embracing competition. I guess we are in the “everyone deserves a trophy” era. Here are my final words. If you quit and run away from competition now, you will carry this action with you through life. Instead of running away, I suggest making a stand, getting better, and staying number one. Are you really a number one if you run away from another potential number one? I don’t think so.

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