December 30, 2014

Check out the latest video of us at the Record Breakers meet in SF.  Big thanks to Kevin and everybody from Hassle Free for hosting a great event.

American Open 2014 Video.

December 24, 2014


Yeah, I know it’s a reference to a different Christmas movie.  But we all know there is only ONE Christmas Movie.


Nakatomi Plaza 4 lyf.

The American Open Video is uploading right meow.  Merry Christmas.

So I’ve pretty much got one more day until I finally get a break and I’ll be able to catch up on stuff.  So in the meantime, here’s a sample workout from the current Yamdancer Olybuilder cycle that the team is doing.  Keep in mind that this is a Tuesday workout and Tuesdays are traditionally shorter “accessory days” to our primary days.


1) Power snatch x1, hang power snatch x1, hang snatch x1: 3 sets at a target weight.  RPE 6/10.  Yes, hang power snatches.

“But Ben, didn’t you write a post saying that you don’t like hang power snatches?”

No.  I wrote a post saying that hang power snatches have a relatively small part in the Olympic weightlifter’s training year (if at all).  They do provide some benefits and force the athlete to keep the loads relatively light.

So if we do them maybe 20 minutes a week a month or two out of the year, how often should the general fitness client/functional fitness athlete do them?  Just food for thought.

2) Jerk from the split: 3×5 at the barbell only or light weight.  Focus should be keeping proper footwork with the torso in a “stacked” position.

3) Push press x3, split jerk x1: 3 sets at a target weight.  RPE 7/10

4) Superset these three movements:  BTN push press x8, Plyo plate push ups x12, db front delt raises x12.  3 sets.

5) Db side bends x12, band tricep extensions x12.  2 sets.

It’s painfully obvious when I see weightlifters or functional fitness folks who’ve had NO experience doing general strength training or bodybuilding.  Athletes of mine (like Emelie) will benefit greatly with a little bit more general strength (and the skill sets that come from training it).  Also, it gives us a month or so where we get to add more variation into our program and take some of the focus away the maximal efforts.

A quick note on my yamdancers.  Everyone coached by me is expected to follow the program or they are not coached by me, not one of my people, etc.  That sounds harsh BUT lets define what being on the program means first.

1) We never have to have a conversation if an athlete wants to do less than what I write.  If Cameron doesn’t fee like he needs the Tues/Thurs workouts, then he doesn’t.  End of story.

2) If an athlete wants to do MORE than what’s expected then we ALWAYS need to have a conversation.  IT’s important for safety and keeping the program measurable.

3) I give personal verbal instructions to athletes who have different needs.

See?  Not that hard to remain a yamdancer.  All you have to do is buy into what we’re doing and buy into the power of the group.

Record Breakers.

December 21, 2014

The gang competed at the record breakers meet in San Francisco this weekend.  I took video but then . . . that would mean I have to finish the video for the American Open before I start that.  Which means I have to start the American Open video.

My lack of time cannot be overstated.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Whenever I need it, I give myself perspective.  A long day (or month) of being a strength coach is better than a half day of pretty much anything else.

But back to this weekend.  A month ago, I approached a few of my general fitness clients who’ve been with me for a while and seemed to enjoy the weightlifting that I include in my group classes.  Three ended up competing and I couldn’t be more proud of how well they performed.  I’ll talk more about that later in the video.  Five of my experienced team members competed as well.  Most of them got meet PRs and all of them represented the club well.

Savasana for Shriners.

December 19, 2014

Attn local yogis:

Check out this charitable event going on at Solfire Yoga studio in Midtown.

Savasana for Shriners

Yoga is difficult to implement into a high volume training schedule however it is something I try to do in between training cycles following a big meet.  I’m going to be doing at least a handful of sessions before I jump back into HEAVY training again.  The team and I will also be doing more bodybuilding and general fitness stuff for the next 6-8 weeks.  I’m calling it Olybuilding and you have to pay me a nickel every time you use say it, think it or do it.

I’d like to get out and do some winter hiking at some point but I’ve been exceedingly busy lately.  If you’ve tried to get in contact with me at some point this week, I promise I’ll get back to you.  Someday.  Maybe.

Also coming up is my annual top 20 list of my favorite tracks from 2014 and my video/synopsis from the AO.

Eleiko Photos.

December 17, 2014


Jacob with the classic coach celebratory gangsta lean.




A big thank you to my long time friend and fellow coach, Jacob for counting attempts for me.


Stay in the Moment.

December 16, 2014

Jake asked me for some last minute advice.  I told him to stay in the moment.

Jake asked me for some last minute advice. I told him to stay in the moment.

Just got back home.  My real home; which is a folding chair in the weightroom.  It also happens to be one of the only places I can steal internet from.  I’ll post my thoughts and synopsis from this weekend as soon as I can.  Thank you to everyone both in the gym and out for all of your love and support.  It means the world to me.

American Open Info.

December 10, 2014

Hey everybody, this will hopefully be one of my last updates going into the weekend.

HERE is a link to the USAW event page for the American Open.  Here you will find the schedule and hopefully the link for live feed if they have it this year.

If the link for some reason doesn’t work “I can’t do nuttin’ for ya” because I won’t have my laptop on me.

I’m rushing around Sacramento right now trying to get ready to leave for the weekend.  You’d be surprised how difficult it is for a weightlifting coach.  But once I get on that plane, everything else stays at home and it will be time to have me some fun. 

I might’ve posted this scene before.  But I mean come on.  It’s Predator.