Upcoming Events: August

Mark your calenders, folks.  This is what’s coming up.

August 6th: Tulsa will be having a mud run.

August 6th & 7th:  The NASA World Cup will be held in OKC August 6th and 7th.  See Jeremy’s write-ups on this.

August 12th & 13th:  There is an AsRx tour stopping in Dallas, Tx.  Apparently, this is a big fitness expo and competition.  I understand everything to be free.  Follow the link for more information.

August 20th:  2nd Annual OKC Area’s Strongest Man at Aspen Athletic Club.  There were some disagreements about how this deal was being handled and I decided to pull out.  Jeremy and Tyler are still involved and I think they will make this a fantastic competition.  Update:  It has been brought to my attention that this may be postponed or canceled.  Update to the update:  This is canceled.

August 27th:   Helen meets Grace at Crossfit 405.  We will be here.

August 27th: Booze and Bruise.  Crusaders RFC will be putting this on at Hefner Park.  Starts at 7pm.  $10 entry fee.  Booze and food will be provided.  We will probably be here, too.

September 3rd: 31 Heroes WOD.  I think this will be held at Crossfit Native.  The Crossfit Exile site says it is here but the Crossfit Native site makes no mention.  That makes me very angry.  Let’s have an event but do not provide people with information on the event.  Are we just supposed to guess?  Why do people try to make my job harder?  Help me, help you.

September 16th – 18th:  Oklahoma Scottish Festival.  Oklahoma’s premier Highland Games event.  Even if you choose not to compete you should still come out.  It will be a lot of fun.

September 17th:  Kansas State & Open Championships in Olathe, Kansas.  There will also be a USAW referee certification here.  We plan to be there.

September 24th:  Warrior Dash in Tulsa.

September 30th – October 1st: Falls Fest Highlander in Wichita Falls, Texas. This is a NAHA event hosted by Gant Grimes of 70’s Big fame.  I am interested in becoming involved with the NAHA and am looking at putting on such a meet in the next year.

October 8th:  Copperhead Invitational in Van Alstyn, Tx.  We did Lock & Load a few months back.  It is an interesting place to compete to say the least.

October 15th & 16th: NASA Unequipped Nationals in OKC.

October 22nd:  This is it folks.  The Oklahoma State & Open Championships are tentatively scheduled for this day.  I have spoken with Jason Boag of Crossfit OKC and he is on board to host.  We are meeting in the next week to hammer out details.  Everything is looking good so far.

October 29th & 30th:  Crossfit Olympic Lifting Cert with Mike Burgener.  At Crossfit Native.

To close the year, The Christmas Open will be held in Onaga on December the 31st.

Right now we are going to try to make the meet in Onaga in September.  I really want to get that ref cert and Jeremy has become a little obsessed with lifting in every Oly meet in a 250 mile radius.  It’s gonna be a hell of a weekend because I want to make the Highland Games in Tulsa the next day. After that, the next deal will be the Falls Fest Highlander.  Then we’ll see.

So where are you gonna compete?

Check back next moth.

Liberty or Death: SCBC goes all in at the Liberty Open

On July 9th the SCBC crew traveled south to Wichita Falls, Texas to participate in the 2011 Liberty Open Olympic Weightlifting meet. A 2.5 hour burn through scorched Earth landed us on the hallowed asphalt outside the Wichita Falls Athletic Club, home of renowned strength sage and meet host Mark Rippetoe.

Preparation for the meet was condensed due to some extended travel, but condensed works for me. Previously, I trained for three weeks to prep for Lock and Load and PR’d in both lifts. For the Liberty Open I trained for three weeks again, and again PR’d in both lifts. Of course, I’d like some more time to perfect technique and allow for more strength development, but the shortened format forces me to focus intensely on my weaknesses. It also keeps me clear of pitfalls such as injury and overtraining. I spent a lot of late nights in my garage chalking up and working lifts. I made April video my lifts for later inspection. She was also an important player in my nutrition and my mobility work. I was able to toil with Tom Ward at Edmond Memorial High School twice. His instruction was insightful and helped sharpen my focus and streamline my programming. I shifted my aim from progressive overload and peak loads to pure bar speed, better technique, and greater flexibility. I also incorporated some of his rotating load programming model (60%, 75%, 90%) to great effect. This was a solid move and paid dividends. I was also able to collaborate with Ryan Self in matters of work volume, tapering, and overall strategy. The amount of progress and preparation I crammed into 23 days is absolutely astounding. 
The weight cut is always an adventure in and of itself. I tend to hover right around 94 kgs/207 lbs normally. Unfortunately, the Liberty Open is set the weekend after the 4th of July. I don’t want to say I spent the 4th wallowing in gluttonous drunken debauchery, but we all know it happened. Thus, I came in the week of the meet looking at a 5 lb weight cut. I was able to manage a gradual weight cut fairly well. I went 90% paleo and dropped down to 209 lbs with a day to go. I switched to distilled water and cut salt and sugar out completely. The day of the meet I woke up at 207.5 lbs. Ate light, pounded distilled aqua, and headed south-by-southwest toward Liberty.
The drive to Wichita Falls from OKC is short and sour. We went a solid hour without seeing any other life form. Luckily, there are an abundance of old school rap and Cherokee pow-wow radio stations south of Lawton. We made good time, found the place easily, and settled in.  
The Wichita Falls Athletic Club is a pretty sweet gym. Not overwhelming, but a good size with lots of open space, high ceilings, and no shortage of squat racks. The gym walls are adorned with Frazetta prints, Gadsden flags, Paul ’08 bumper stickers, and other mementos of hyper-masculine, self-sovereignty. Even the meet t-shirt paid homage to Atlas Shrugged. Among the more notable gym rules: “no silly bullshit”, and “anyone caught doing FRAN owes me a decent bottle of merlot”. Can’t help but feel that we’ve wandered into the den of a cave bear, and that bear’s name is Rip.
The last guy caught doing “silly bullshit”
Rippetoe is an imposing figure. He carries a tangible presence with him when he enters the room. Dude’s about as alpha male as they come; a throwback to a bygone era when a man was judged by the amount of hair on his legs and how far he could hurl a stone. Rip would be right at home on some ancient highland, spearing an overgrown mountain boar and snapping its neck to the delight of his fellow huntsmen. As it is, he makes do with riding a Harley sans helmet and being really good at strength training.
So, once Rip walks in we gather in the meet room and wait to be called to weigh-in. The weigh-in takes place in a tiny, dark closet on a 1980s-model double-beam scale. As I wait to be called, I note that weigh-ins are moving slowly. Everyone who comes out of the closet is getting redressed. I’m surprised that so many people are cutting it that close on weight. My name is called and I make my way to the closet. Once inside the door is shut behind me and Rip commands “naked, on the scale”. This ranks as one of the top 5 most horrifying moments of my life. I’m in a broom closet with a 240-lb caveman who just ordered me to strip and turn around. So, I comply. As I stand on the scale, a gigantic, furry forearm reaches over my shoulder to adjust the scale beams. I hold my breath so not to anger him. “92.9 kilos”, he remarks. “Opening snatch?” I fumble nervously to find the list I’d made the night before. “75 kilos” I reply. He turns to jot down the numbers and I bolt for the door, happy just to be alive. Made weight, feel great, an hour to kill – time to eat!!
We load-up on Subway and spend a few minutes relaxing. Here we chatted with fellow lifter and Subway patron Tom Witherspoon of Spoon Barbell Club, host of our previous meet. After a 16-hour fast, getting some chow was carnal and I probably over did it a bit, but I felt that to err on the side of over fueling vs. starving before a weightlifting event was the proper course of action. On the way back we stopped in to borrow a set of hangnail clippers from the Asian nail salon up the street. These were used quickly and effectively for dangling callous removal. This little turn of luck cannot be overstated. “You take pedicure. You enjoy.” Not today; daddy’s gotta snatch. 
Back at the club, we set our strategy in motion, warming-up with agility drills, foam rolling, and light bar work. Once the women’s portion of the meet was winding down, I started working snatch-related lifts (overhead squat, snatch balance, snatch high pull, hang snatch) at light loads with a focus on speed and technique. It felt really good. After lifting almost daily for three weeks, taking three days of complete rest leading up to the event left me feeling very sharp and refreshed. The bar speed and energy in the warm-up were excellent. I hit my opening attempt once or twice during warm-ups to give myself confidence for the platform. Now you focus and you wait. This was the best part of the event aside from actually lifting. Ryan would watch the meet from the other room and come through the hallway and tell me “you’re two out” or “you’re next”. I waited in the warm-up area and visualized my lifts. My nervous energy was beginning to build. “You’re up.”
Walking out into the main room I was overcome with a huge rush of adrenaline. The announcer spoke, “the bar is loaded”. My opener was 75 kilos (165 lbs). This is a medium weight for me. My PR is 86 kilos (189 lbs). As I chalked-up I told myself to relax, but it wasn’t happening. I stood over the bar and forced myself to take a few seconds, breathe, clear my mind, and get set. This was helpful. The room got quiet as I found my grip. The bar felt thin and light in my hands. It felt good. I rolled it back to my shins, set my back, took a full breath, and paused, crouched and coiled, ready to explode. My mind went completely blank. I pulled the bar off the ground, trying to remain patient. Once it cleared my knees I jumped with everything I had and almost threw the bar through the ceiling. I was shocked to find myself standing completely upright – a power snatch was not my intention, but it’s what happened. The lift felt light, very fast, and a little chaotic, but it was a good lift and I was happy to get the opener out of the way. It is vital, especially for emotional lifters, to set the tone with a good opener. With each successive attempt I felt more confident, more relaxed, and more capable. My second attempt was at 85 kilos (187 lbs); one kilo shy of my PR. I hit it with ease. My final attempt was scheduled for 91 kilos (200 lbs) if I felt good, 94 kilos (207 lbs) if I felt really good. We opted for the latter. This would be a body weight snatch and a new PR by 18 lbs. It went perfectly. Good bar speed, good control, and still a power snatch, but my best lift of the three. After I dropped the bar I gazed eagerly at the head judge. He signaled the lift was good. What a thrill. Tiger Woods fist pump and high five Ryan as I leave the room. I’m learning just how big of an impact the nerves and adrenaline in a competitive environment can play. 
There is some down time between sessions. Maybe 30 or 45 min. You take a pee, drink water, foam roll a little, and find a good bench to lie on. Ryan tries to gauge warm-up times based on how the meet progresses. When I’m 20 minutes out we start working clean and jerk. This, too, feels good today. I work up to a 100 kilo (220 lbs) lift and then relax. My opening attempt is 109 kilos (240 lbs). This is a medium-heavy weight for me. My PR is 116 kilos (255 lbs). However, I’ve also cleaned 265, 270, and 280, so I’m pretty confident that if things go well, I’ll be in uncharted territory very soon. 
In this portion of the meet, I am much calmer and more confident. I still have an adrenaline spike, but most of the nerves are gone. I hit my opening lift with ease and move on to a 118 kilo (260 lb) attempt that will be a meet PR and a jerk PR. I kick its ass. It really felt great. This is where things get interesting. I’m only a few kilos out of 1st place and things are feeling phenomenal. We opt to roll the dice. After announcing 125 kilos (275 lbs) as our final attempt, we elect to change the load to 126 kilos (277 lbs). This accomplishes a few things: I get an additional 90 seconds of rest, I psyche out my opponents, and I put myself in position to win my weight class. This is what we came for. 
I still can’t think in kilos so I have to know what the pounds are in order to wrap my mind around the lift and properly prepare and visualize what I need to do. 277 lbs is a big lift. Its 3 lbs shy of my clean PR and 22 lbs above my jerk PR. I feel confident, but I know that the lift needs to be perfect in order to succeed. As I walk onto the platform I stomp my feet. Hard. It feels solid. I feel strong. I clamp down on the bar like a vice, roll it in, tighten up, and prepare to kill. I rip the bar off the ground and clean with all the force and speed I can muster. I hit it perfectly. Good catch on the delts, hands in good position, ride the clean to the bottom and use the bounce to start my assent. At the top of my squat I get a nice re-bend on the bar which I use to re-grip. Everything feels right. I take a few seconds to breathe and prepare for the jerk. This is the most dangerous part of the lift, especially for me. Luckily, someone in the crowd yelled “heels” so I’d remember not to push 277 lbs off of my toes. I fill my lungs, tighten up, and thrust the bar off my shoulders. As I drop under the weight I catch the bar perfectly, locked out and stable. It’s heavy. I struggle. I find my footing and make eyes with the head judge who signals me to drop the bar. My gaze is locked on his hand. Thumbs up! Tiger Woods, high five, walkout. 
My total of 220 kilos was enough to take 1st in my weight class. I was very pleased to be called up and awarded. 
Even the Dog got a Medal
My new total puts me at 111 nationally among 94 kg lifters according to USAW. An additional 5 kilos puts me in the top 100. I plan to do that and more at the Copperhead Open October 8th. Having completed two meets now, I have to say I could not be happier. I’ve gone 11-for-12 on attempts and set 4 PRs. I’ve made tremendous progress mentally and technically, and I still have a long way to go. It was a phenomenal experience to lift at the Liberty Open, to see the WFAC, to meet Rippetoe, and to kick ass on the platform. All of the lifters and staff were great. We made some new friends and accomplished some valuable networking. It really could not have gone any better and I can’t wait to do it again.
Jeremy Rutledge a.k.a Jimmy Ray “Bodine” Ray-Ray Simmons
Editor’s Note: I prefer Jerry Ray.  That’s simply out of hand.

A Beginning Program for Highland Games

The Tulsa Highland Games are coming up and I’m getting pretty excited.  The Iron Thistle Games were awesome.  I thought I’d put something out for you guys that may be interested in coming out to compete.

Tiger Woods looking to make a successful transition to Highland Games competition.

This is a program for beginning throwers by Dan John:

“For an example, I offer you the world’s simplest program:

1. Two Dumbbell Clean and Press: start light and go up to max.
2. Overhead Squat: Mix reps each workout. 3 sets of 8 with a minute rest OR 5×5 OR 5×3 OR Pyramids OR multiple Pyramids, aka “Waves”.

Go home. Repeat two days later.”

Dan is big on simplicity and treating the body as “one piece.”

I’d like to expound on this.  If you’ll notice, these exercises do a lot for stabilization of the body.  In the article which I take this program from, Dan even suggests going with Single Arm DB Clean and Press.  Good idea.  I would take these ideas and implement them as the following:
Olympic lift – full, power, hang or any combination there of
Unilateral oly movement – opposite of the previous
Corresponding squat – to the first oly movement
So to stay with the alternating A / B format I love so much:
A
Hang Snatch
One Arm DB Clean and Press
Overhead Squat
B
Power Clean
One Arm DB Snatch with rotation

Front Squat

As for the schedule: Throw, Lift A, off, Throw, Lift B, off, off or repeat.
I may even like to see the squats come second, alternating Overhead Squat with Back Squat.
 This is tricky and if you’re not prepared, you will end up on your face.
The thing about the Highland Games is that the weight really isn’t that heavy.  Nothing is over 56lbs. except the caber but it probably won’t be more than 90lbs. for most.  The trick is balancing the weight and the body.  To do well your body needs to be explosive and stable.  Balancing a 90lbs. pole held vertically is a challenge.  And in some of the throws you will be whipping 50lbs. around your body.  The centrifugal force here is substantial.  Core work is important but it is not the whole of the answer.  What we need is stability work in which the core is a part but not the whole.  Where core work will mostly consist of abdominal and low back muscles, stability work will include all the small muscles of the torso.  All these muscles help stabilize the body and improve your ability to throw.  So this is why we work the overhead squats and unilateral movements.  These do well to work the stabilizing muscles.  The Olympic lifts develop explosive power and the squats help drive or at least maintain strength levels.  Like I said, you are probably already strong enough to handle the weight.  Now you need to focus on stabilizing the body and you can always stand to be quicker.
So as a full program:
Mon
Throw – Ideally, if you have the implements, choose two or three events and practice them.  But most will not be able to do this.  So get a shotput or a big rock and get 50 good throws.  Don’t go nuts.  Give about a 75% effort.  Easy throws focusing on form.  You could also do kettlebell tornadoes as these help mimic the motion of the hammer throw.
Tue
Hang Snatch 8 x 2 – be quick here
Overhead Squat 3-5 x 3 – go deep and stay tight
                                    -or-
Back Squat 3-5 x 3-5 – go heavy
1 Arm DB Clean and press – go to a heavy single, then a few back off sets
Wed
Off
Thur
Throw – A different two or three events if you have the implements.  Or up to 20 KB throws overhead if you have one.  If you do, also try to work some kettlebell throws for distance.  Or just throw the shot as Monday.
Fri
Power Clean (jerk optional) – heavy single, then back off sets with power clean only for triples
Front Squat 3-5 x 3
1 Arm DB Snatch 8 x 3
Sat
Off or find a group of guys you can throw with on this day
Sun
Off or find a group of guys you can throw with on this day or start cycle over
It’s pretty simple.  Maybe too simple.  You throw twice a week and you lift twice a week.  Two days of lifting should be sufficient but one more probably won’t hurt recovery. On throwing days we work to perfect technique.  Lifting days are to develop explosive power and improve stability.  Probably wouldn’t hurt to add in some core work.  Curlz are admissible, too, as they may have some carry over in flipping the caber, if you are so inclined.
For those of you who have never competed in the highland games, this should serve as a sufficient program to prepare you.  I can’t guarantee you will win, but you will be prepared and you will have a good time.


Ryan

Liberty Open Recap

I was going to leave this to Jeremy but he is taking forever.  So here is my recollection of the Liberty Open at the Wichita Falls Athletic Club (WFAC) July, 9th.  I’ve been having some shoulder issues so I opted not to participate.  Instead I served as a coach for Jeremy.

We left OKC around 10 in the morning and made it to Wichita Falls around noon.  Rippetoe has a pretty sweet setup.  One room is filled with squat racks and various strength equipment.  Another room is a dedicated Olympic lifting area with a bunch of platforms.  Outside is a small sprinting track and a small area for strongman stuff.  There is also a platform here.

Anyway, we had hoped to arrive early, weigh-in and go eat.  But this was not the case.  As I said, we arrived around noon but weigh-in was not until 1pm.  And early weigh-in was not permitted.  So we milled around for a bit, checking out the gym.  We got to converse with Josh Wells for a bit.  He’s a pretty cool guy and slightly strong.

I don’t think Rip was very impressed with us in the beginning.  The guys at WFAC are self-professed lifting snobs.  And by this, I mean they don’t take well to people outside their LWC.  We were actually lucky to get in.  They harbor some ill-will towards Oklahomans due to the lack of meets in our state.  SCBC is changing that, though.

So we are just hanging around not doing much.  We didn’t really know anyone their and after the long ride we were sick of talking to each other.  So I told Jeremy to find some where to lay down and rest.  I took a seat next to the bookshelf and began a little light reading.  Most of the books in Rip’s shelf were right leaning political.  Light, indeed.

So Rip finally shows up.  As soon as he comes through the door the first thing he takes notice of is the bald gentleman sleeping on his bench press.  I don’t think he liked that.  He gave Jeremy the stink eye on a couple of occasions.  Shortly, after Jeremy got up and introduced himself to Rip.  Rip shook his hand and walked away without saying anything.

Our first meet experience was at Lock & Load hosted by Spoon Barbell and this time around things could not have been more different.  This was much more, um, official?  As the clock hit 1pm weigh-ins began.  I think I’ll save this story for Jeremy because it is just too funny.

After weigh-in it was time to eat.  Jeremy likes to cut it close on weigh-ins.  He hadn’t eaten much in the previous days so now it was time to fuel up.  Subway was the destination.  Foot-long turkey, bacon, avocado sub was the objective.  Over the course of lunch Jeremy couldn’t stop picking at a torn callous he’d ripped about three days prior to the meet.  Now he had a piece of skin dangling from his palm.  To remedy this, he thought the best course of action was to stop at a nail salon we passed.  He went in, asked for some nail clippers and clipped it off.  I wish I could have seen the staff react to this request.

After lunch we were back at the gym getting ready for the meet.  As usual Jeremy was being overly cautious.  I can’t remember what his planned attempts were but I know they were too light.

For the snatch, Jeremy’s attempts were 75kg, 85kg and 94kg.  He made all these with ease.  94kg was a PR body weight snatch.

In the Clean & Jerk, Jeremy also went 3 for 3 at 110kg, 121kg and 126kg.  126kg was also a PR.  Total was 220kg up 18kg from his previous meet total at Lock & Load.  As a result of his efforts Jeremy took 1st place in the 94kg open division.  Everyone that placed got a medal.  Everyone that competed got a shirt.  Jeremy, however, was the only competitor to have his shirt thrown on the ground in front of him rather than placed in his hands.  Go SCBC!  I mean go, really.

So after the meet we all met up at Opa’s German Brewhouse and Sausage Factory.  That wasn’t the real name.  We got there at 6:30pm.  Everybody else showed up at 7:15pm.  The plan was to be there at 7pm but we wanted to go ahead and get some beer.  When 7 rolled around and no one showed up we thought for sure they had ditched us.  But they did eventually show and we had a pretty decent time.  We sat with the cool kids from 210 Crossfit in San Antonio.  We lifted with some of these guys back at Spoon Barbell.  Pretty decent guys.  The owner, Steve Galvan even bought everybody’s meal.  If I knew he was gonna do that I’d of had a few more beers.

Anyway, another meet in the books.  Jeremy did pretty well.  Rip even turned out to be pretty congenial.  I guess he is just a no bullshit guy in the gym.  We talked a bit about the state of Olympic lifting in Oklahoma and that it was our mission to change that.  Rip seemed pleased and he offered to help out.  He said he would bring some people to help staff the meet and he would even announce for us.  I thought that was pretty decent.

So that’s my story.  Hopefully, Jeremy will provide a more detailed post soon.  He has all the pictures of actual lifting.

Ryan

So what is Ryan doing? pt. 2

So I wanted to break this down just a little bit more.  Yesterday I told you what I was doing andwhere the ideas came from.  Now I want to talk a little more in depth about the “science,” if you will, behind it.
Here it is again:
A
Power Snatch x 2 x 8 alternate Power Clean x 1 x 10
Squat x 5 x 3
Bench 5, 5, 5+
Row x 8 x 3
Neck Harness x 20-50 x 2
Curlz x 10–15 x 2
Back Extension x 15 x 2

B
Front Squat x 3 x 3 (recovery)
Overhead Press 5, 5, 5+
Chinup / Pullup x max x 3
Deadlift x 3-5 alternate with speed pulls, fat bar deadlift, wide grip, whatever
Shrug x 12
Dips x max x 2
Abs x 15 x 2

I’m in a kind of a holding pattern now.  I’ve tweaked my shoulders and can’t really push numbers in the O-lifts.  My immediate goals are to get my squat and deadlift numbers back to 500lbs. or above.  I’m trying to take it easy in the presses to rehab the shoulders.  And that’s it.  Everything else is just extra.
So now let’s look at the exercises themselves and how I try to balance things. 
Squatting
I’m pushing numbers in the back squat.  As I said, this is pretty much my main goal.  What I want to do is work the back squat on Mondays and Fridays using front squats on Wednesday as a sort of active recovery ala Starting Strength advanced novice program.  But alternating A / B format ends up seeing me back squat only once a week some weeks.  This is fine, though.  I think A and B complement each other perfectly.  Going to an A/B/A, A/B/A format would throw off the symmetry of the program.  My OCD will not tolerate that.  And I need to get my front squat numbers up as well.  I am an Olympic lifter.
Pressing
My shoulders are jacked.  I gotta use light weight until I can get them back.  My muscles are strong enough to push heavier weight but my shoulders can’t handle it.  So, to paraphrase Wendler, if you can’t push weight, push reps.  Get some work in.  I’m alternating bench (horizontal press) with overhead press (vertical press). 
Press Antagonists
This is probably a dumb name but I don’t want to label these pulls.  I only do these to maintain balance.  Most people have seen the gym rat that comes in to work chest and biceps.  And that’s it.  ‘Cause the chicks dig it.  What you will notice about these guys is how their shoulders begin to round forward with so much press work without the corresponding pull.  I want to avoid that.  So when I bench (horizontal press), I row (horizontal pull).  When I overhead press (vertical press), I do chin-ups or pull-ups (vertical pull).  Rippetoe likes to think that heavy deadlifts are enough to maintain balance between the front and the back.  I disagree.  We need to use the antagonist movements of the presses.  Always pull more weight for the same reps or the same weight for more reps as the corresponding press.  For me, I bench Xlbs for 5 reps.  Then I row that same weight for 8 reps. 
Posterior work
“Pulling” or posterior work is basically bending over and picking things up.  The deadlift is the posterior movement.  A novice can get away with heavy deadlifts every workout, but only for a while.  Deadlifts are hard to recover from, though this varies from person to person.  Also note I said heavy deadlifts.  Sub-max deads can be done often.  I take this into account and do heavy deadlifts approximately once every two weeks.  But I am still working the posterior when I don’t deadlift heavy.  The power snatch and power clean, in addition to being a total body explosive movement, also work the posterior.  B workouts that are not scheduled for heavy deads are basically light deads.  Active recovery, if you will.  Using fat bars or a wide grip will limit the total poundage you can lift due to grip strength.  So you really can’t tax the back with heavy weight in these movements because your grip will fail well before.  Straps are not allowed.  But chalk is.  I pretty much screw around on off B days.  I should pick something and work on making it better.  I think speed pulls are the way to go here.
Explosive movements
Power snatch and power clean.  As I said, these movements also serve as posterior work.  Right now, I really only use them as a warm-up and to keep my technical proficiency in the movements for when I transition back into a more Olympic lift focused program.  I open A workouts with these and alternate every other workout.  I also do explosive kettlebell moves at the end of each workout.
Beach work – Yoke and Gunzzzzzzzz
I’ve never been a big fan of things like this.  I’m actually a little ashamed to admit I’ve made room in my program for such.  But I have.  Honestly, I think the Olympic lifts are the best way to build the yoke.  And chin-ups are the preferred method to build the biceps.  But shrugs, neck harness work and curlz are kinda fun.  And I’ve not done any of this stuff in years so it’s kind of a refreshing change.  I keep the reps high and the sets low so I can get some hypertrophy benefit with little hindrance to recovery.  Notice how curlz are worked with the bench and dips with the overhead press.  I think A days work the triceps more and B days work the biceps more.  So arm work is biceps on A days and triceps on B days.  I also like how the dips serve as a little chest work on off bench days.  Curlz could be replaced with chins and pull-ups could be used solely as the antagonist for the press.  This is actually a good idea.
Core
The core is the abs and the lower back to me.  I have a roman chair and this is where I get the core work done.  Sit-ups and back extensions.  I think deadlifts adequately tax the low back so extensions are done with squats.  The abs stabilize more in the squat than the deadlift so abs are worked with the deadlift.  A lot of people think heavy squats and deads are sufficient core work.  I think a little extra won’t hurt.  Ideally, I think one should break down ab movements in flexion (sit-ups), rotation (russian twist) and static (planks).  I will wait until later to try to incorporate these.
So that is why I’ve chosen to do what I do.  I’m trying to get my squat and dead numbers up as quickly as possible.  But right now the weights are heavy enough to require some active recovery techniques.  My shoulders are weak and require some rehab work.  I can’t lift very heavy but I can push reps.  I keep oly work in to warm-up and to maintain some quickness.  I employ a little hypertrophy work because it is summer and I’ve got a little juice left in the tank for them.  I use core work and press antagonist movements because I’ve come to believe they are important for balance in the body.  Yoke, gun and core work is supersetted to serve as a little metcon cardio.  Once I feel strong again I will probably switch to Texas Method.  Or when a competition gets closer I will adjust programming accordingly.  I think this is sufficient to get me ready for the upcoming strongman stuff.  I will need a little GPP conditioning work, though.  The NASA meet is coming up but I don’t have time to do any sort of periodization.  If I feel like I can get back to 500lbs in the squat and dead I may enter.  The Copperhead Open is in late October and I want to make that.  So by mid to late September I will probably focus more on the O-lifts.  This is just a general program to get me strong so I’ll be ready to make a change in programming when the time is right.  Right now I squat 375lbs for sets and I can deadlift 455lbs. for a single.  I’m close.  My max squat is probably around 455lbs. and my dead close to 500lbs.
Ryan