I was recently featured on Mike Robertson's Physical Preparation Podcast. Check it out HERE. This show regularly features many of the best strength & conditioning, fitness and therapy professionals in the game so it was an honor to be featured on the show. We discuss many topics, including my own training, how I got started with my gym, physical preparation for speed skaters and how I go about blending manual therapy with training. Check it out!
Road to 700 Deadlift Update
Though I haven't posted on here much as of late; I realized that I need to update on the deadlift journey to 700. I competed at the WI State Fair State Open in August and pulled a 650lb deadlift along with at 320lb raw bench press to win Best Overall Lifter and first in my class. For bench, I opened at 300, which is an easy weight for me but my head came up on the first attempt so I got red lighted. After this, I decided to stay at 300 to make sure I got on the board. After hitting it on my second, I went to 320 for my third and though it was harder than it should have been, I got it. I need to get my bench rolling again. For deadlift, I opened at 585, which was smooth and easy, and it should have been since I tripled it a little over a month out. I went up to 630 and hit that rather easy. I closed out with my 650 goal and pulled it rather easily. Overall good meet and I felt like I was well on my way to 700 after performing so well here.
After this, I chose to enter WABDL Worlds in Vegas, which I had qualified for in a previous meet. While I wanted to do both bench and deadlift, I wanted to bench in a shirt for this meet and had nobody to go with me, so I decided just to focus on deadlift this time around. I didn't end up lifting until 630ish Vegas time, which was 8:30 to me so I felt a little off with the time difference (I usually train in the late morning/early afternoon) but I did decent. I opened at 601, which was smooth and easy. I had tripled this in training so no surprise here. I then jumped to 655.7 for a PR and broke my own WABDL state record. Based on how the field was looking, the one guy who would've beat me had bombed out (attempted 738 and missed) and those who were close to me would be beat by this attempt so I knew I had to hit this. After this, I went for the big goal and attempted 701. I got it moving almost to my knees but just didn't have it and missed the attempt. Overall it was a great meet and I'm very close to hitting a 700 pull. The goal for 2017 is to hit that 700 deadlift and to put together a nice 3 lift total. I'd like to total 1500+ raw and/or 1700+ geared. Back to the drawing board!
622.8 Deadlift @ 188
I recently competed for the first time since August 2014; at a push pull meet UPA Clash of the Titans in Kenosha, WI. I won best overall deadlift with a PR pull of 622.8lbs at a bodyweight of 188lbs. I went 562, 611.8 and 622.8 with what felt like some left in the tank. I added a mediocre 314 raw bench after a loading mishap and some hip movement mishaps on the first couple of attempts. Overall it was a great meet and I'm excited to be back on the platform. The plan now is to pull 650 and then chase 700. I'd like to pull 700 weighing under 200, which I think is very doable. Here is a video of my deadlifts. Train hard!
I recently wrote an article detailing some of the things I did to get my deadlift to 600 lbs. Give it a read HERE!
Check out my latest article and video on STACK. I discuss proper weight distribution between front and back leg with the split squat and reverse lunge. This is a common issue I see though it is not often talked about. Give it a read and view HERE.
Interview on BalancedAmes
Check out my latest interview on BalancedAmes; a great site about life and the body run by Amy Kiefer.
Make it a phenomenal day!
I wrote this back in January but never got around to finishing it until now. Check out my reflection of goals and events from the last year.
If you know me or read any of my stuff, you know that I always have goals and things that I am working towards. I like to sit down at the end of the year and think back to what all went down. Reflecting on the last year, the year of 2014, I have some more great accomplishments, milestones and adventures that I experienced. My hope is that reading this may motivate you to chase some goals or desires you might have. Check it out...
A 600lb deadlift was something that I had faithfully chased since college and with my injury setback, there was a time when I wasn't sure if I would ever pull heavy again, let alone pull 600lbs. Well, with a couple of years back to hard and heavy training, I finally eclipsed the mark back in April at the WABDL World Cup in the WI Dells, pulling 601 and coming close with 611 at a bodyweight of 186, for the win and state record. I later pulled 605 and took a run at 620 at the WI State fair deadlift competition, which I won for the third straight year in a row, this time getting best overall lifter. This was a huge accomplishment and goal met for me. It took some perseverance and dedication to get through and then well beyond some setbacks to reach this goal. Accomplishing this meant so much to me as it is something I wanted so bad for so long. Sometimes you need to use those roadblocks to get better rather than hinder you. Big time life lesson with this one.
My 601 deadlift
As an added bonus, I also put on some size and got up to a pretty solid and lean 190 over the course of the year ; after sitting around the low 180's for quite some time. I decided that I wanted to make a serious push to put on some size so I upped my training volume and upped my calories and made it happen. Another training goal accomplished. I also made nice improvements in many other lifts including getting my raw bench towards the mid 300's and playing around with low 400s in a single ply shirt before a seam busted on me. I got my front squat up to 360/370 and back squat to the mid 4's raw (which still needs work). I also started playing around with some oly lifts for the first time in awhile.
In July, I was able to expand and double the size of my training facility, 2 years after opening in July of 2012. The gym is now looking and feeling more and more like my dream that I had for it. It is amazing how far it has come in just over 2 years of action and I couldn't be more proud. In addition to the expansion of size, I also have 2 full time trainers, who are absolutely phenomenal and it has been great watching them grow, add on and improve the gym more than I ever could myself.
Sometimes I just look around and try to take it all in. It really is quite amazing how things have compounded and grown. The space, the client base, the improvements, the organization, the experience, everything. It blows my mind. As a matter of fact, I was just talking with my old roommate a few weeks back and she was talking about how when she first met me I was talking about my plans, dreams and what I wanted to do. I thought back to the time when I had half of my equipment stored in her basement. Now to come and stand in the gym and see how everything has come together is really quite phenomenal. Planning, consistency, dedication and learning is what it takes. That, along with some blood, sweat and guts. Just like my own training and lifting journey.
In addition to this, Rosencutter Ultra Fitness 2 opened in January 2014, which I co own with my brother, Alex, who simply amazes me with the development he has shown in such a fast time. An expanded space and a second location in 2 years is more than I could have ever dreamed of. I don't say all of this to brag. I say it in hopes of inspiring someone who may have a dream or goal of their own. Most people are too afraid to do what it takes to make it all happen. Most people give up when it doesn't happen in one month or even one or two years. Stickability. Get to know it.
As you also probably know if you read my stuff, I am always reading, taking courses and trying to improve and get better. Here are a few highlights.
ART has taken me on some new adventures. In May I became an “Elite Provider” and started treating employees at Emerson Climate Control in Cudahy. This has been a great experience so far and I really enjoy making a difference at the company. It also helps me to improve my hands on skills more and more. I recently took their long tract nerve entrapment course and am excited to add more tools to my arsenal. I truly love helping people relieve pain and feel better.
PRI (postural restoration institute) has opened up my eyes to some amazing new ways to look at the body. Learning about the asymmetrical patterns that we are naturally designed with and how they affect posture, movement, performance and pain has helped to add a great skillset to the practice of what we do at Rosencutter Ultra Fitness and it has helped many clients improve their movement, pain and performance. You can read more about my in depth thoughts on PRI in previous posts HERE. I will be taking more courses this year and am excited to continue to learn about the amazing complexities of the human body.
The Fitness Consulting Group has helped me to grow and improve as a business owner and I had the opportunity to develop some great new relationships with other fitness business owners throughout the country through various mastermind meetings and seminars. Combining thoughts with other successful minded people really makes a huge difference in achieving what you want. Anything you read on business or success will tell you the same. Don't try to do things on your own. Get help and get coached and that is how you will reach the top of the mountain.
The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know. There are so many things I need to learn and get better with and I think its great.
Back in September, I began training in Jiu Jitsu with a former intern and friend of mine, Justin Manley. It had been something I wanted to consistently get into for quite some time and I finally made it happen. I have now started training and taking lessons at Gracie Jiu Jitsu Milwaukee with a phenomenal coach, Skye Middleton. I absolutely love it. I feel that the movement background that I have provides a good base for the art and learning how to effectively maneuver my body on the ground and use appropriate leverages and positioning against an opponent all branches off of my background rather nicely. I love the new challenge and the learning and coaching that I am experiencing with it and am excited to continue training and see where it takes me. It is also a great form of conditioning. My first goal is to earn my blue belt and the sky is the limit from there. I am very excited to now be a part of this great academy and to continue developing new skills.
Life and Experiences
On top of professional and athletic accomplishments, I created many more great memories with family and friends. Memories and experiences that I can forever cherish and be thankful for. Certain relationships will continue and certain ones unfortunately will not, but the experiences and memories will always be amazing. Life can truly be magical if you allow it to.
Over the summer I attended my 10 year high school reunion. Wow, has time gone by fast. It was great getting to see so many old friends, some who I have talked to more recently and some who I hadn't heard from in years. Though I have grown and evolved a lot since high school, it still brings a smile to my face anytime I reminisce about some of the wild and crazy times we had back then. Man did we live it up!! Though people lose touch as life goes on and things change, there are many who I will always consider good friends no matter what. The memories we have together will always be there and wow do we have some great stories to tell! (though many of them aren't PG ;)
My goal for this year is to L. I. V. E, just live, like Matthew McConaughey's character in Dazed and Confused would say. I want to enjoy life to the fullest, try new things, experience all that I can, learn, grow, develop new relationships and hopefully help as many people as possible to get what they want out of their bodies and life. I have been working on finding a better balance between work and life outside of it and plan on continuing to make this happen. This balance is something that I have gradually realized the importance of. Working while fresh is much more productive than working while burned out and exhausted. Working around the clock takes its toll on you no matter how much you love something. I am continually trying to improve this balance. A certain someone used to get on me about this and I know she was definitely right. Similar to training, work hard AND smart. I need to keep improving here.
When it comes down to it, I absolutely love teaching and inspiring others and I am blessed to be able to do this daily; and even more blessed to have other great coaches to do the same. I would like to begin doing more presentations and seminars in order to help more and more people, so that is a goal of mine this year as well. RUFP will be more involved with the community this year and more and more people will get the top of the line information and coaching that they deserve. I began writing for STACK last year and I'd like to make time to write for more publications as well. Check out my Stack articles HERE. Check out an article on abdominal training I did for Watchfit HERE. I've also been working on a follow up article series to the series I did for Exercisesforinjuries.com a few years back about what I did to get through my back injury. The new series will talk about what I did afterwards to get over the 600 mark and stay healthy while doing it.
Training wise, I'd like to pull a mid 600 deadlift this year, get my raw bench up to high 300's, my raw squat up to high 400's, low 500's and front squat 400. I will deadlift 700lbs weighing under 200 before its all said and done. As I said earlier, I am going to earn my blue belt in jiu jitsu. I'd also like to do a bodybuilding competition within the next year or two. I've always been a hybrid powerlifter/bodybuilder who chose to compete in powerlifting. I'd like to try my hand at a bodybuilding show at some point. Goals and more goals :)
What About You?
There is plenty more I could say but rather than continue to bore you with my own experiences, lets talk about you. What did you accomplish and what goals did you reach the past year? What things did you miss out on and if you did, why was it? What do you want to make happen this year and what do you need to do to put things in action?
Surround yourself with the people who are going to help you make it happen and don't be afraid to fail. Learn from your mistakes and continue to improve. As it says on the wall in my gym, Never Stop Short. Pick your goal, make a plan, get appropriate help and guidance, and start your journey. The only thing that can stop you from reaching that end line is you. 2015: Get After It!
Check out my latest article for Stack Magazine.
Developing Pre Pull Tension for a Monster Deadlift
“Right now, someone just as busy as you is making the time to train.” This quote from T-Nation popped up online this morning and its ironic because me and one of my coaches were talking about this exact topic the other day. After working and meeting with hundreds of people over the course of my career, there are many that have had TONS of success and then there are always those few stragglers who just don't quite get the results that they should. Its not just my clients, it can also be people whom I meet and talk with out in random settings.
One common, AND FRUSTRATING, fact that I come across with those that aren't successful are their invalid excuses for missing workouts and training. “Oh I was real busy and didn't have time to make it in.” “I just have so much going on, its hard to fit a workout in.” Bla bla bla fricking bla. Guess what? We are all busy. We all have things going on. But guess what else. Those of us who CARE about REACHING our goals MAKE the time to train. Why? Because it is a top priority and we know that we need to train, because if we don't we will never get to the goals that we want to and need to get to.
These same people also seem to have plenty of time to watch brain draining television shows every night and play around on their smart phones off and on all day. You have 2 to 3 hours to sit on your ass and watch TV but can't find an hour, or heck even 20 minutes, to get a workout in?!!! I'm not buying it. I am as busy as anybody and I still train 4 to 5 days a week. I know know, but “I work in a gym so its easy for me.” Well, I worked 60-70 hour jobs in the past before I was in a gym all day and guess what? I still trained 4 to 5 days a week. And contratry to popular belief, just because you work in a gym does not make it any easier to find training time; in fact, it can be harder. Anybody who owns or works a lot in a gym can attest to this. I haven't missed training time in over 14 years. If I had to get up early to train before work, I would. If I had to train at night after work, I did. Right now, I specifically block time off in my schedule each week to train. I've had loads of clients, colleagues and lifting partners who have made it through and over the same obstacles.
It all comes down to priorities. You either want to improve and reach your goal or you don't. If you want it bad enough, you will train on multiple days consistently week in and week out. If you do have a LEGIT reason for missing a workout some day, you will make it up as soon as you possibly can. Showing up once or twice every other week WILL NOT get you anywhere, plain and simple. Whether thats losing body fat, adding 20 pounds to your deadlift or getting rid of nagging back pain, YOU have to have the discipline and the dedication to get the job done. Its on you to put the time and the effort in to show up and then to perform. And its on you to keep doing this time and time again. Putting some effort in for one month, or even one year, and then quitting is not acceptable either. It takes time and dedication to accomplish big goals. It takes stickability. Nobody can do it for you. If you want to be successful, MAKE IT HAPPEN! And if you don't, then accept the responsibility for your own lack of action instead of walking around complaining.
This spills over into all aspects of life. Want to do something different with your job or career? Then quit sitting around making excuses and being miserable and get up and DO IT! Yes, it might require some work and effort on your part. No, it probably will not happen overnight. But guess what? If its important enough to you and you want it bad enough, you have absolutely no reason not to put the time and the effort in to make it happen. Want to grow and get better as a professional? Turn the tv off, get off of facebook and open up a book. Want to have more money saved up? Then quit wasting it on booze, cigarettes and 24 packs of diet mountain dew, saddle up, have some discipline and put some away each month. And if that is what you spend your money on, then don't walk around complaining about feeling like crap all of the time because its your own fault.
If any of this strikes a nerve with you, then instead of getting angry how about you use it as motivation, get up and go and do something to improve yourself today! To those of you who feel what I am saying, then keep on fighting to get better and keep on achieving more and more goals that all of the naysayers said would never happen; because in the end, you can smile knowing that you gave it your all to be the best you could be.
Nobody has time for training. They make time. If you are not doing so, the only question is why not?
Ab Workouts Done Right
Check out this article I wrote over at Watchfit on abdominal training.
Ab Workouts Done Right.
Rosencutter Ultra Fitness