Keep it Real

Posted: February 18, 2021 in Uncategorized
Auburn athlete Maura Huwalt 100 pounds ago. Looks even better now! Real Strength.

Let’s face it. Lifters and athletes are hung up on moving more and more weight often at the expense of form.

Any team be it high school or college that has worked with me has heard me use the term “real” strength. If you’ve gained 25 pounds in the Squat or Bench Press and your form looks identical to what it was 25 pounds prior then this is “real strength”. If your Squat has lost a foot or two of depth or you suddenly wrapped your knees then the extra 25 pounds is “false” strength.

If your new 25 pound heavier Bench has smashed your sternum since you rebounded so hard to use momentum in your lift then this is false strength. An even better one is when your spotter or spotters take over about 25 pounds of the lift and they say “didn’t help it was all you, all you”. Or maybe you decided you needed some elbow wraps to absorb some of your lift instead of you. False.

This leads to repeated plateaus and staleness. You’ll be stuck in a rut for a very long time if you are an intermediate or advanced lifter and keep fooling yourself with “false” strength.

The Deadlift?? Don’t get me started. Orthopedic Surgeons and Chiropractors are busy enough. Let’s say you Deadlifted 400 with a nice flat back. You then get 425 with a lift that turns your back into an inverted U, makes it halfway up your thighs followed by a hip thrust and wiggle to get into an almost finished position on the lift. You guessed it….”false strength”.

Look harder at your programming and EFFORT and not shortcuts. Your effort, and by effort I mean true focus and real effort, trumps any programming or supplement. When 100% effort takes over then programming becomes important. White hot focus and do or die approach to finishing lifts makes programming important. If pure effort is not there, program design is irrelevant.

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