OK, in the last log, I talked about my last two years of training and where I am heading now.

Let's get caught up on what has been going on lately.

I got really bored doing Met Con stuff and not being strong. I've been getting massage and Graston/ART on a regular basis and feel pretty good so a few months ago I started getting on the Strong(er) train.

Lemme tell ya', when you get off this train and then get back on, it's a long ride.

I spent a few months getting the squat, press and deadlift back up to something I felt reasonable.

Nothing earth shattering, but I got the Safety Bar Squat back to 405 (that's 4 plates because all bars weight 45 pounds), the press to 225 and the deadlift back to 515. This was all with a belt. Seems like a good starting point to go on a strength gaining cycle right?

The hip only hurts a lot, so what the hell.

I have been playing with my programming and being a minimalist.

I only do 2-4 exercises per training session and hit them pretty hard.

I have been following a wave I never used before and it looks like this for the main lift (squat, press or deadlift):

Week 1: 8's

Week 2: 5's

Week 3: 3's

Week 4: Singles (not a true max effort single-just something that feels heavy and moves fast).

I've never been strong, but I am a fast lifter. The bar either goes a thousand miles an hour or I get stapled. That's why I am using bar speed as a reference.

I did the wave in two phases for a few months. Wave 1 was no belt, Wave 2 was with a belt. I have about 40 belts and I use two.

Met Con, Grip4orce, Graston, ART, Total Performance Method, RPE

I have a P2 belt for heavy lifts and I use a Spud Pro Series belt for reps.

I love both and can't decide which one I like better.

I also use weightlifting shoes all the time. I feel a RAW lifter will do better in them.  I do not wear them while pulling unless it is Snatch Grip, or Clean Pulls.

Back on topic, this wave is working pretty good and I have been getting more comfortable with heavyish weights and the body is cooperating well.

Assistance work is as follows:



Kettlebell Swings

Keystone Deadlift, like an RDL.

Watch this video to see how they are done.

EliteFTS Power Squat

Single leg work


Various Dumbell Presses

1-5 pullups between sets

Barbell Rows/Dumbell Rows


Face Pulls

Bi's and Tri's too, gotta keep the guns primed.


Block Pulls 5" or 7"

Deficit Pulls from 1"-3"

Snatch Grip Deadlifts

Clean Pulls


Reverse Hyper


Ab Wheel

GHR Situps

Various Planks

Lots of braced ab variation with bands

Dragon Flags

TRX stuff

Farmers Walks and 1 Arm Farmers Walks

I throw Grip work in too.


Met Con, Grip4orce, Graston, ART, Total Performance Method, RPE

I REALLY like the Grip4orce for rows and presses.


This has been working for me so what do I decide to do?

Change it of course.

The bench jacks my hip up worse than any other lift so I decided to add it back in like an idiot.


Because I suck at it and the desire to compete is still there.

I changed my set up to a feet out front from a tucked WAY back bencher. This is not making my hip worse.

I have a plan here.

The plan is to add it back in and see where the pain begins. If it does not get worse, I am adding weight each week.

I started with 3 sets of 5 at 135.  All good.

Next week, 3 sets of 3 at 185, still no hip pain.

Then I did 3 sets of 1 at 225. Still no increase in pain.

Back to 5's. 185 for 3 sets of 5. No problem.

The next week, 225 for 3 sets of 3.

Since this was working I decided to change it again.

I hit 3 sets of 5 at 255 last week. No additional hip pain.

I plan on going along like this as the weight is super easy, and will progress slowly allowing my hip to tell me when to stop.

So why add the bench in?

I am toying with the idea of doing a push pull.  Did I forget to say that I have not squatted in 4 weeks?

I am giving the squat a rest and I am doing various good mornings for a while to let the hip get used to the bench.

It seems to be working.

I figure if I can get the bench back to 315 without pain I can start a meet prep cycle and do a meet raw just for something to train for.  Now I am not saying I am returning, I am toying with it.

We'll see.

A Push/Pull doesn't count anyway right?

Let's talk about my athletes for a minute.

I don't do 1-on-1 training much at all anymore. It is a drain on me and I can get people just as good results in groups so that is the away we are going.

TPS has two groups that I coach:

the Total Performance Method


the Total Performance Method for Powerlifting.


Met Con, Grip4orce, Graston, ART, Total Performance Method, RPE

Method for Powerlifting ladies Laurie and Polly benching on the ELiteFTS B3 rack.

The TPS Method is regular people who would normally get 1-on-1 training and they all have pretty much the same goals but don't realize it.

They all want to look better naked (LBN) and they all want to be strong(er) but don't realize it, and they all want to be in "shape".

The TPS Method for Powerlifting is for lifters.

They both have different goals and train differently.

There is a commonality though.

We have used various types of programming over the years, and we used percentages for a long time.

Training on a percentage based system gives you real numbers to hit and can be managed to the nth degree. This method got us good results but it had a drawback.

If you've ever trained on a percentage system you know some days it is awesome and some days you are not 100%.

This can cause the weight to feel too heavy, missed lifts and worse, a feeling of failure.

When people pay for your coaching the last thing you want is to make them feel like a failure.

With this in mind, we looked for something else, something better.

We switched to an RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion) system.

I was unsure if this would adapt to a group. I had some doubts.

Boy was I wrong.

It works. It works better than anything I have tried for PT and groups.

People are smashing PR's all over the place.


Well, it is auto- regulating.

I'll explain how and why in the next post.

Thanks for reading.

Remember to give me a thumbs up vote!

Met Con, Grip4orce, Graston, ART, Total Performance Method, RPE


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Vincere vel mori