The 300 Club Posted on 12 Jan 16:51 , 0 comments
Well it's taken me maybe 8 months longer than I wanted it to but I finally reached the 300kg club. I'm not a great deadlifter and it's by no means an "elite" club in Strongman but it's good company to be in that's for sure! Plenty of guys I know have been around for 6 - 10 years and recently broken through. Some never do it.
A bit crazy to think I've only been training 3 years. It is literally the anniversary of when I first walked into a gym and started a 5x5 programme. I never thought I would be here now doing the things I'm doing and calling some awesome people my friends.
So, how did I achieve this particular lift? I mean, that's the real reason I want you to read this...
1. Train smart
What does this mean? It simply means you don't always need to deadlift heavy every week. For some this is the only way to train. But to save you snapping all your shit up, taking a break from deadlifting and working on some other areas can help. The rest and recovery from a punishing lift has reaped the benefits here. I didn't deadlift for about 6 weeks before trying this. All I did was squat 4 times per week.
2. Listen to people stronger than you
Who helped me lift this mainly? John Clark for one. He said to make a lift like this, you need to KNOW you can lift it. Not just struggle through. But know that there's more in the tank. That no matter what this lift, the one and only max lift you attempt today will be the easiest lift mentally because you've already prepared for and done it in your head.
Simon Johnston next. He will tell you honestly he is not the most gifted strongman but I have trained with some proper monsters and his workrate always amazes me. He just works so hard to overcome whatever limitations are there. He is my main inspiration for trying to get to the levels he got to. His help last night by really believing in me just tipped me into that zone of self belief that was already impressed upon me. He just refused to let me fail. Badger was also egging me on... along with Kerry (my missus) and Nicola Polley (who puts most blokes to shame in the gym). Get a good supportive group behind you and you can achieve things, I guarantee it.
Dave Meer finally... for teaching me to ride the waves of strength. You can't always improve every lift, every week and expect this to be linear. There are no smooth graphs in training. The numbers you punch into a spreadsheet don't take into account that argument with your partner. The boss who pissed you off. The customer who made your life hell. The car fucking up. Where are your spreadsheets in a rusty gym with the wind blowing in and when the heater packs in?
3. Eat. Rest. Repeat.
I've eaten more food. Leaned out and recovered more. No special diet. Just cut out some choc/sugary cereals... stuck to Weetabix, liquid egg whites, oats and meat with veg and potatoes for tea. Nothing special. Just lots of the right stuff. And rest? Find something to do. I play guitar. Don't be the guy researching a million training cycles every night. It just gets in the way and might make you swap programmes if you have that shitty day. Sleep goddamit. Get off the fucking xbox at 3am and go to bed.
4. Don't give in
Never hitched a deadlift in my life. Scares the life out of me. But I pushed myself past my self imposed limit. I don't like hitching. I have a go at Richard Martin every time he does it in training. But now I understand why he does it because I HAD to do it. Just this time to get me over a wall. I know what I need to do to improve the lift and to make sure I stop my hips rising faster. But form will always go to shit on a PB (generally speaking). The trick is to decide which lift you give up on and what it means for your overall training. If I was hitching from 220kg x 5 upwards, I'd be re-addressing training in a significant way.
I'm not going to give you an amazing deadlift plan. I'm not even going to give you form tips. There are plenty of sites out there for that kind of thing. But I will recommend training with people stronger (sometimes smarter) and who have been in the trenches.
If you want to be in the company of these great people you need to be doing what they are doing instead of pouting in the gym with your internet assembled training methodology bullshit like I see in the gym week in, week out.
This was hard work. Plain and simple. Keep your fucking percentages. I no longer give a shit.