“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.”

-Napoleon Hill

 

Lifting programs are built to achieve several different goals.  When it comes to the general public, most people focus on getting stronger and getting leaner.  The science of speed and power play little factor when sitting down to lay out the next program.  We often skip around and look for the next greatest get ripped in 6 weeks program.  Some of the staples that are done in the gym are not sexy and don’t come with a flashy title but can really help you bust through sticking points with some of your lifts.  Remember, you getting stronger should be of the utmost importance and if you can make this your main objective, especially in the beginning along with your diet being in check, you will be well on your way to fine tune things down the road.  In other words, stop looking for the magic bullet and focus on improving your overall strength first. 

It’s important to build your programming around compound movements; from there you can sprinkle in all the flare.  Trust me, each and every week I’m going to do bicep curls, you find them sprinkled into my program all over the place. This is simply due to the fact that I want to have big strong arms and it also appeals to my vanity of looking good.  That being said, single joint movements are going to come after compound movements (i.e. Squats, Deadlifts, Hip Thrust, Overhead and Bench Pressing movements). For more information on these check out this previous article

When it comes to these big lifts you will find that there comes times when you hit plateaus.  A few lifts I see missing from many people’s programs that can help support the big lifts are Farmers Walks, Floor Presses and Hip Thrust.  If you don’t have a hip thrust as a main staple in your lifts by now, please, for the sake of your saggy ass and weak deadlift, add them in!  Heavy Carries or Farmers Walks and Floor Presses are often skipped over and can help you break through that plateau, so let’s cover some of the benefits of each and how to do them.

Vitamins & Supplements to Support Your Lifestyle

Farmers Walks

Heavy Carries are one of the best exercises for grip strength which is one of the biggest factors to people failing on several of their lifts, especially the deadlifts.  Having weak grip strength and can also lead to elbow and wrist pain.  You don’t have to look like Popeye but you should have relative strong grip strength.  Great side benefit is this exercise is great for shredding body fat. 

Carries can be performed by grabbing a set of dumbbells or a trap bar.  Stand up tall with your chest out and shoulders back. Walk quickly without running.  You can time your carries, for example; one dumbbell in each had for 30 second walk and repeat for 4 sets.  You can also go for a certain distance; it doesn't have to be long but should be heavy!  Start with 20 yard carries and work to increase the weight in each hand.  Add farmers walks into your program 2 times per week and watch your strength soar. 

 Vitamins & Supplements to Support Your Lifestyle

Floor Presses

It matters not if you are looking for hypertrophy or maximum strength, the floor press should be mixed in to help.  The benefits of the floor press are that it is easier on your shoulders by reducing the range of motion.  It can help with sticking points as the bottom of the lift is in the middle of where a traditional bench press would be.  Finally the floor press puts increases upper body power.  The lift takes away the ability to use your lower body and forces all the chest, triceps and shoulders. 

Floor presses can be performed much the same as a bench press, the difference being that you will lie on the floor rather than on a bench.  You lower the bar under control under your elbows and triceps come all the way to the ground, after a slight pause you will back to the starting position. 

Work on adding these two lifts into program and let us know about how you smashed a new PR.

Yours in Health!

Ben

 

Vitamins & Supplements to Support Your Lifestyle