Minimalism Strength and Health

Brian Wright

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Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Im a 39 year old business owner, husband and father that has pursued strength since the middle of high school. I remember the first time I put wagon wheels (the 45’s) on the bar for back squats, and later on (after my Bodyweight moved above 155lbs, when I did reps of 135lbs on the bench.

I’ve been in the personal training field since 2000. I feel like I’ve been able to play with, experience, and learn from a broad variety of training modalities in the last two decades.
A short list:
College and semi-pro soccer
Track
Olympic weightlifting
Power lifting
Body building
Boxing
Wrestling
CrossFit
Obstacle Course racing
Kettlebell sport

I’ve tried all of the above with specific training plans to improve performance. I certainly have my favorites, and can ascertain what works best for me.

The goal of my next 3 months will be:

Continue to lower my resting HR and recovery HR as I improve my cardiovascular base for the Fall TSC snatch event. (I’d like to make that event as aerobic as possible).

Maintain my standard of Simple and Sinister at my half Bodyweight Bell (40kg) so that after the fall TSC I’m able to purse the appropriate StrongEndurance plan to achieve Sinister.

Maintain my DL 1RM, 1 arm/1 leg push-up, and circa 20rep pull-up standard

I’d like to do this using an easy strength-like approach as this program has worked very well for me in the past, as well as keeps my interest to tinker with the principle of “same but different”.

My schedule starting May-Aug (Starting a specific TSC prep in Sept for 7 weeks) will be:

Sundays-open gym program - Heavy day (pushing on load, not volume)
Tues-Friday-Light and Medium days based on feel (I don’t coach this often with students, but can work for some).
Mon and Sat-off

Steady State HR training is outside of these sessions as a focus will be to improve cardiovascular performance (and health).

I call this “version” of easy strength
The Everyday Workhorse (my company is Workhorse Consulting)
Exercises:
Pull-up variations (grips, towel, rope climbs)
Deadlift variations (sumo/conventional, pins, deficits, SLDL)
Farmer Carry (rack carry, yoke carry, getup multiples)
10mins mobility training (T-spine extension and rotation)
Press (overhead variations and 1 arm push-up variations)
(Accessory work as needed-if time allows)
Must be done in under 40mins daily.

First entry-coming Tues May 1 2018
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Gearing up! This program is heavily based on "how it feels". It's like the old Bulgarian Olympic weightlifting method - work up to a heavyish max just about daily. Now those guys are famous for mowing through lifters - burning them out FAST. I'm not at all saying that I am planning on lifting those poundages. All I'm saying is that on days that I feel particularly strong (to quote Pavel), I may decide to push it a bit.

Tuesday May 1 is coming close!
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Thanks Steve!

First entry-May 1 2018

No warmup, just a cold start
Total training time from first set to putting the foam roller away at the end (mobility drill) 36mins

The categories are for this training program
pull variation
hinge
push
carry
squat
(Accessory or steady state HR training)

Today:
14 BW pull-ups
Rest 90sec
10 BW pull-up
Rest 90sec
7 BW pull-ups

DL 315-2
Rest 2mins
2x5 345 DL (75%) rest 3 mins between

Bench press
185-3
205-3
215-3
(About 90-120 between)

2 trips double 24kg rack carry
1 set 12/12 airborne lunges (BW)
T-spine rotation mobility drills-2.5 mins each side
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Am finding this to be what I like the most. Set programs are great-when destinations are clear. For GPP, I personally am attracted to the variety and feel of the training.

Yesterday was a bit heavy. I came out swinging!

5/2/18
2x5 16kg loaded toe pull-ups
2x10 tricep push (for push today)
044 StrongEndurance protocol for snatches-2x10 OTM, 3 series (60 snatches)
10 goblet pry w 24kg
2 trips suitcase carry-32
3 sets middle work
(26mins)
20 mins HR training-hiking on treadmill
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
5/3
40 min session with fight coach-hard interval work.
Later that day:
1 set pull-ups-17
SLDL-5/5 double 16’s
Kneeling press-24 10/10
Rack holds dbl 24’s 2x30sec
Dbl 24 FS 2x 5
20mins

5/4
3,3,3 pull-up w 24kg
25/25 x2 16kg Conditioning snatches
2x5/5 1 arm push-up on box
2x5/5 pistols 16kg
25 mins

5/5 off - yard work

5/6
Heavy day
DL 225-5, 275-5, 315-3, 365-3 (changed stance to sumo, even though I pull conventional)
Rope climbs-20’ 4x (no legs)
10/10 28kg presses
5/5 as singles 40kg presses (half Bodyweight-lots of rest)
2/2 getups 40kg (dine as consecutive reps)
50 mins at this point
Rest 20mins
20 tire flips
100 yards on sled
10hill sprints
All done in short anti-glycolytic explosion with lots of rest
Done in circuit fashion to change movements
25 mins

Monday 5/7
Stretching/rolling -15 mins
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Tues 5/8
40lb toe position pull-ups -3’s
Alternate with double press - 28’s-3’s
5 sets
1 set double 28 FS -10
3x10 double 28 swing
25 min ruck walk with HR monitor

Wed 5/9
Really strapped for time
Home garage-just a barbell set up primarily
1 pause clean pull-1full clean, 1 front squat
60kg
80kg
100 kg
1x3 FS 120kg
Then 1x5 back squat 140kg
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Wow! Really busy week.
My last entry was Wed 5/9

On 5/10 I just was able to fit 20mins in
2x4 Hanging Leg Raise (a little SFB work)
(My goal is to become a bit more text book on these for course demonstrations)
Snatch 32kg - using StrongEndurance protocol 044
2x10 OTM
3 series
Bent press
36/36
40/40

5/11
Back to easy strength
Weighted pull-ups at belt-32kg-set of 5 and a set of 4
225 DL-5
365 -2x3
2x7 double 24 clean and front squat
1x10 double 24 press
35 mins

5/14-15 mins
Pull-up sets
15, 12, 10, 10, 7

5/15-20mins before a class
Bench form work-lots of squeeze
135-10, 185-5, 205-5 (felt strong)
Narrow stance back squats w pauses (for pistol strength work)
135-5, 185-5, 205-5

5/16
“Game day”
Decided to test myself some and jump into my buddy’s CrossFit class. I’m not using this methodology for training, but as a once in a while fun way to express athleticism.

Work up to a heavy complex of barbell power clean, hang clean, jerk
Got up to 235

Then 3 rounds of clean and jerk with 135
400m run
(Almost like the litinov session from Dan Johns never let go)

5/17-10mins
2 rounds each arm
Snatch-3
1 bent press
1 get down
40kg
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
No sessions other than 15mins of mobility on the 18th and 19th.
5/20
Easy warmups of pry goblet squats, halos, and stick windmills
DL 345 -3x5
5 min S&S - 32,36,32,32,36
3/3 36 getups
1x12 pull-ups
Sprints 4x4 40ft w plenty of rest
HR steady state
(Total training time 105mins)

5/22
40lb weighted pull-ups -2x5
SLDL superset w hamstring curl machine-2x5
Kneeling press-2x5
1x10 double FS
25min treadmill hike
Total training time 45 mins

5/24
Total training time 20mins
4x5 depth back squats 135
Axle DL 4x3 225
4x3 mil press 135
(Circuit fashion)

No sessions between

5/27
Warmups
DL Heavy
295-5
345-5
375-3
315-5
385-3
Rest 15 mins
S&S simple with 32
Rest
3/3 getups 40
5x5 tire flips
1 mile slow pace
Total training time-105 mins
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Been a while since I have made time to update the forum. My workhorse every day Program has definitely become an almost everyday program. Still, I continue to support the easy strength program. I do think I will switch back to a 2 day per week program at the conclusion of this one. Obviously load and daily volume can increase with that scheduke.

Rather than go through the details from 5/27-6/18 I will sum up.

I have gotten in 13 sessions in that time. All pull-ups have been weighted with either a 12-24kg depending on the day/grip.
All deadlifts have been varied by deficits, sldl, conventional and sumo.
Presses have been either bench, one arm pushups, double kB military press or dips. (Just not practicing getups three days)
The carries have ranged from farmers to sled pushes (that’s pretty much it)
Last has been goblet squats with 1 session being another B.B. front squat day.

Just added some HR training in there.

Today I went heavy on DL cause I had a long weekend off. Just felt good. 3x3 395 moved. This is very heavy for me. So the neural tension practice is paying off! That’s really what this comes down to.

Going to be a fun week
Tests at the end of the month.
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Another busy week. Just 4 sessions (6/19, 6/21, 6/22, 6/24).
All good sessions with the average session length being under 30 mins. The sets were all just 1-2 depending on exercise. I’m tapering off a bit as I head into a mid year testing.

The idea is to use this test day to gauge where I am now as I prepare for the fall TSC.
I’ll switch over to a more traditional Marty Gallagher/StrongFirst Lifting Program. It will be just once per week on DL, and then follow that up with accessories. From there a StrongEndurance plan will make up the remainder of my GPP and prep for the TSC.

Again, the easy strength (sub 30-40min sessions more frequently) are fun and entertaining. I’d recommend this approach to anyone with some decent experience and know how to just have fun with strength and fitness.

Test posts next week
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
It’s been a while since I posted.
Recap-the “daily” practice sessions went well! But with a busy summer and an even busier fall, I have been and will continue to follow a GPP program that loosely follows a StrongEndurance plan (044).

The snatches, DL or sometimes SQ, with presses and pull-ups simply speaks to me. Steady state HR training or strength variety days occur semi regularly.

Posted session:
Snatch 32 4x5 every 30sec
Rest
Repeat for 5 series

2, 3, 2 DL
Alternating medium presses-6/6
2 sets weighted pull-ups
30min loaded hike

Total time
1 hour 10mins

(This is typical for 2 days a week)
 

Brian Wright

Double-Digit Post Count
Team Leader Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Sept 17, 2018
Am sticking with the GPP approach, but would like to take 12 weeks to add some muscle. In the minimalism approach that appeals to me, I will be just using clean and press (jerk) and squats. I will be usinibg a 3xweek plan strong program. Today is medium day using 7-10RM train8ng weight. I will be practicing using a modified grip setting the bell further back in the hand-resting more on the ulna, as opposed to equally balanced. This should give more support to a straight line press. Furthermore, I will pay close attention to super loading the list into the clean, setting up a great press.

Today’s session
Movement prep-rib pull, 3way neck, halos
A few swings and squats

Double 28’s sets of 3,4,3,5 with about 2mins between
BB front squat (1 clean then) same rep scheme - 100kg

40mins
 
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