There is a saying in the world of real-estate: location, location, location. You see, you can have a business that you love and work hard at, but if nobody has ever seen your store that is tucked away, out of sight and in the middle of nowhere, well, you are going to have a hard time building a solid client base.

There is also a saying in the world of powerlifting amongst the more veteran lifters: foundation, foundation, foundation. You see, you can love lifting weights in the gym and you can work hard at it, but if you are lifting without a solid foundation, well, you are going to have a hard time building a solid base, and that base is your platform for powerlifting success.

Veterans to the power game know, and newbies will learn, that there are a million and one advanced programs out there to choose from. Some are good, some are great, and some are just okay. However, none of them will do the trick if you haven’t first taken the time to build a solid foundation. Building this requires patience, it requires time, and it requires consistency—all things that can be difficult to do in a super-fast, tweeted-saw-that-already-on-Facebook society.

People want to know how the big boys/girls train. You know, what methods they use and what is the key. Yet, what they fail to see is that what the big boys/girls are doing now is based upon years of building their foundation. This fact is often missed because while they were building their foundation, they weren’t "the big" boys/girls yet. It is like that great band you just heard of. At the moment, they are hitting the arena and appear to be an overnight sensation. However, what you might not realize is that they have been practicing in a garage for a decade, honing their craft one small club after another small club. So, what I am saying is that you have to begin with building your foundation.

"What?" says the new lifter. "Building your foundation? What does that have to do with squatting a grand or that really cool newly invented super-movement I saw that super strong guy do?" Well, it is like the protein shake. Newbies don’t buy the protein with the best nutrients. They often buy the one with the photo of a huge molecule being crushed by the superhero looking guy. The reason being, I want to look like that, so I better drink that. They see the 1,000-pound squatter's routine, so they reason to themselves, I want to squat a grand, so I better train like that. Repeat after me: foundation, foundation, foundation.

How do you build this foundation?

"Shouldn’t I work on speed or something? Isn’t there a chain or a box in all of this discussion?" Well, you can put the pedal to the floor of your car, but if the tires are totally bald and your transmission has been neglected, what is the point? Foundation is comprised of several things, including learning the proper form and using that form with some volume (meaning some reps). You are not just lifting to test your power, but you are lifting to build your power. Let me repeat that: don’t just lift to test your power, lift to build your power. Be consistent.

Learn the basics, lift the basics, live with the basics. Try not to hurry yourself into an injury. Trust me, they come on their own. Don’t rely on better gear to be strong either. We have a ton of lifting gear laying around at the MONSTER GARAGE GYM, and in all my years there, I have yet to see Mike Strom’s bench shirt lift 600 pounds by itself.

Mike Strom: Top 50 All Time American Bencher, 198- and 181-pound class

Steve Goggins didn’t just get powerful all of a sudden. He listened to his body, trained with the basics, and built one hell of a foundation. And because of that foundation, he moved on to become the first powerlifter to squat 1,100 pounds.

I don’t say this to sound preachy. I say this because I have nearly three decades of powerlifting under my elitefts™ belt, and I am cluing you in so that you can progress with a greater amount of success. I often see newer guys watching the stronger guys. They see that he is strong, but they don’t connect the dots with regard to what he did over a decade to get that strong. Foundation is everything and that takes time. Invest the time, invest in your foundation, and then move on. When I think about the difference between lifters that have invested that time and built a sound foundation of strength, form, and power and then those who have not, I think of the William Penn quote, “Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” Read that to yourself again. Let it sink in for a moment. “Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” Use your time in the gym wisely, and know the “why” behind your plan for the day.

Location, location, location. Build your business where it can be found so that your years in business are the most rewarding. The same holds true with your lifting. Foundation, foundation, foundation. Build your foundation the right way so that your years in powerlifting, built upon that never-failing foundation, will take you further than you ever imagined.

*Photos courtesy of Bent Nail Photography. LIKE Bent Nail Photography on Facebook.