Essential Equipment – Shoes

Essential Equipment – Shoes

“Shoes are the only piece of personal equipment that you really need to own.” Starting Strength: Basic  Barbell Training by Mark Rippetoe. Why do people think shoes are unimportant, or decide to wait to buy weightlifting shoes until they are lifting more? What makes...
Training log 101

Training log 101

When it comes to getting stronger your training log is an essential piece of equipment.

Keeping a complete and thorough training log means you will progress faster, have more fun and be more aware of how your body adapts and responds. Your training log provides important data that allows you or your coach to make smart and effective programming choices. Seeing your progress on paper is very rewarding and motivating.

In this video, I discuss how to make the most of your training log and show an example log book.

Your elbows and the press

Your elbows and the press

One aspect of the press that many lifters can stand to easily improve is the position of their elbows at the bottom (or rack) position of the press. It is incredibly common to see lifters, especially those who have not yet received proper coaching, perform an entire set without correctly setting their elbows once.

This article will briefly review where your elbows must be set at the bottom of the press, why this position tends to deteriorate throughout a set, and what you can do to fix it. Having a consistent rack position in the press is one key to effectively training the movement and making steady progress with it.

Lift and Eat, May 13th

Lift and Eat, May 13th

On Saturday, May 13th, join us for a fun afternoon of lifting heavy weights and eating delicious food!

All Bay Strength and Game Changer Fitness athletes are invited to gather for some exercise, food, and good company. We ask everyone to bring a food item, potluck style. We will also have a grill and be cooking fresh meat and veggies.

Starting Strength Challenge 2017

Starting Strength Challenge 2017

Bay Strength had a great showing at the 2017 Spring Starting Strength Challenge! This is the first time this meet was sanctioned by the US Strengthlifting Federation, and lifters that competed in this meet can qualify to compete in a National level meet. The contested lifts were the Squat, Press and Deadlift.

The Case for Competition as a Novice

Novices can benefit just as much from competition as Intermediate and Advanced lifters, if not more. With proper expectations and sound coaching, the novice should be encouraged to compete, for what can be learned on the platform is lasting and of immense value.

A coach and trainee may find many other areas of growth in a competition. Perhaps a lift that has been lagging will become a new favorite. Confidence may grow, and the relationship between the coach and the lifter may deepen. The experiences shared with teammates will result in camaraderie, another important source of support during training. For all of these reasons, a beginner should not be asked to wait to step onto the platform. It should be encouraged as an essential part of their early progression as a lifter.

It’s Not Optimal

It’s Not Optimal

As a strength coach, the best advice I can give you, the novice trainee, is to spend the duration of your linear progression with a singular focus – getting stronger.

Training for strength takes advantage of the body’s ability to benefit from the stress/recovery/adaptation cycle. Originally described by Hans Selye in 1936 as a mechanism to describe the set of responses an organism goes through in order to adapt to an external stressor, the stress/recovery/adaptation cycle is a simple way to understand our infinite capability as humans to adapt and change.

However, some of us, myself included, suffer from the desire to become accomplished in many kinds of physical pursuits and are unwilling to stop practicing these other disciplines for the length of time it takes to run a linear progression. Factors that affect recovery include adequate rest, food (especially protein) and sleep. Failure to respect the need for the recovery piece of the stress/recovery/adaptation cycle will derail your linear progression.

Transitioning to a hook grip on your deadlift

Transitioning to a hook grip on your deadlift

Selection of grip is an important consideration for the deadlift. In the Starting Strength method, we start new lifters with a double overhand grip because it produces a symmetrical stress across the shoulders and because it builds grip strength.

But before long, every lifter reaches a point where the weight on the bar in the deadlift exceeds their ability to hold onto the bar with a double overhand grip. When this happens, they need to switch to either a mixed grip or a hook grip.

The hook grip is preferable, and this blog post explains how to transition to using it.

Protein – Getting More

Protein – Getting More

Sometimes it can be challenging to take a diet high in carbs and fat to one that’s high in protein, especially if you need to limit your total calorie intake. Below is a handy guide to foods that are mostly protein.  If you don’t need to worry about your...
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