Saturday, December 14, 2013

Schedule for 12/16 - 12/20

Hello everyone. Happy holidays. 

Here is the schedule for this coming week:


There will be one workout offered per day. Monday and Tuesday will be the same. Wednesday and Thursday will also be the same. Finally, Friday will have a separate festive workout. 

There will be in influx of newly matriculated people from the on ramp. So expect it to be a bit more crowded. I expect Monday, Wednesday, and Friday to be the most crowded.. So if that's an issue for you, adjust accordingly. 

Also, there is a 4pm session offered Monday Wednesday and Friday. So there's that.

12/20 will be our last session and we will return next year on 01/06/2014. Enjoy the break! 

Thank you all for your patience while the track undergoes its facelift and the holiday scheduling changes. We appreciate it very much. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Construction at Drake

As you have all surely noticed, Drake stadium is undergoing some construction. Please bear with us while we accommodate and adjust things accordingly. We are just as anxious on our toes as everyone else. 

Keep checking Facebook and the blog for location and schedule changes. We will try to make things as smooth as possible. 

Also, please note that the entrance to drake is NOT a good entrance. So please enter through the IM field and carefully walk through the gates in the back to the stadium. Use caution. 

Again, thank you all for your patience and understanding. 


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Thanksgiving Week

This week, we will only hold sessions on Monday 11/25 an Tuesday 11/26. We will be off until the following Monday. Enjoy the holidays! 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Soccer cancelation for 11/21 and 11/22

Once again, due to soccer practices and games, we will be canceling a few sessions this week. 

Please note and adjust your attendance as needed:

Thursday 11/21: NO SESSIONS AT 11:00 and 12:00. 

Friday 11/22: NO EVENING SESSIONS AT 5:15pm and 6:15pm. 

Thank you much. Please spread the word. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Soccer cancelation.

Tomorrow. Friday. 11/15. November 15th, 2013. 

Access to Drake Stadium will be restricted to NCAA soccer exclusively. That means, unless you buy a ticket to watch the soccer game, you won't be able to enter. 

As such, we are going to cancel the 5:15pm and 6:15pm sessions. 

As always, thank you for your understanding and have a wonderful weekend. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

Location change for TONIGHT (8/23)

5:15pm and 6:15pm sessions will meet in front of the NAF field tonight. The area is called Wilson Plaza. Please pass this information along.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Days off for the rest of the year.

Hello everyone.

Please note the following dates. We will not have any sessions on these dates.

8/30, 9/2, 9/3, 11/11, 11/27-11/30, 12/19-1/3

I can't believe we're already looking at 2014 but so be it.. 


Dang.. If only I made you guys squat.. 

In 15 years, I'm going to write a book called "New exercise for being awesome and all that jazz" and in it there will just be one word... any guesses?

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Happy 4th

No sessions this Thursday (07/04) and Friday (07/05). Be safe and have fun this 4th of July.


Friday, June 7, 2013

Graduation time

Hello loyal readers:


Next week Friday is fully cancelled. I suggest staying away from campus if possible.. unless the idea of tens of thousands of students and their seemingly proud parents all teeming and clamoring to witness their progeny's academic climax while pretending that they didn't spend the last 4 -6 years turning their brains and bodies into mush via various less-than becoming choices sounds appealing to you. I digress....

Wednesday will also be canceled. Drake will be closed for some reason. They told me why but I lost interest rather quickly after the point came across and now I can't recall. So don't ask me, please.

So the revised schedule is:


So you'll all still have plenty of opportunity to cling and clang those weights around.

Meanwhile, here's a few good reads:


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Rest = Smart

REST: Smart!

I've only been saying this for a few years now. So far, no one has listened to me. That's so strange. Not even going to start ranting though. Too tired of it, so I'll do the smart thing and just rest.

Read this:

Maybe if you get it from a stranger....

Stretching: NOT Smart.

Another installation in the "I already told you this" post. Stretching is something that came out of the 50's and was a good way for gym teachers to kill time. There was never any good science to support it, yet millions upon millions of people adhere to these fallacies and scorn you if you don't. The reality is that exercise addicts are just that, not experts or even knowledgeable gurus. So be careful who you listen to.


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Being useful can suck

No sessions this Thursday 3/28 or Friday 3/29. Enjoy the time off.

My buddy asked me to help him move because I'm a lot stronger than the rest of his friends. I should be honored and flattered by this gesture, but in fact I'm bitter. What a waste of a perfectly good Sunday!

So the lesson here is that as you get really strong and make the "rigors" of civilized life a joke, don't tell anyone. Even if lifting a TV set is easy, make it look tough and let out a few grunts periodically.

Don't go showing off either. I grabbed like 8 of his "heavier" bags, as described by him, at once and walked them to the van a few stair flights below. What a mistake. This only raised the bar on what he believed I could do. Before I knew it, I was carrying all of the heavier stuff while everyone watched. It was easy, yet all I wanted to do was sit around and stare at paint dry or watch grass grow today. I lift heavy stuff for no reason all week. I ask for one day to just veg out. What do I get? How about a day to demonstrate the product of my efforts.

Lucky me, by the end, everyone expressed that they'll be calling me for help. Yeah.. Fat chance.. I learned my lesson.

Being strong means you're much more valuable to the human race. The problem is that you don't get a choice. This is an inherent aspect of being awesome. It's expected of you. So keep it under wraps and don't go flexing at the beach just yet. There's a lot to be said for modesty an humility, especially when it saves you from helping friends move on a Sunday.

But if by chance, your brawn is called upon, you better deliver. Not to impress anyone, but rather to validate all of those seemingly pointless efforts lifting and moving things.

That's all for this week I think.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Ready, steady, GO!

Keep in mind, everyone. This is the first week of CHOOSING THREE day out of 5.

So choose wisely!


Tuesday, February 19, 2013


It's raining. That means no outdoor sessions. But you all can still come into the Wooden Center and get your exercise on. Try IFT.

Thanks and enjoy!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Too wet

It's too wet to play tonight, folks. Enjoy your weekend. Be safe! Stay warm! Play!

We'll see you Monday.

P.S. there may be 5 days optioned next week.

Monday, February 4, 2013


Get ready folks. This one's a doozy. If you fall asleep, don't worry, you won't hurt my feelings, I passed out a few times while writing it.

Here it is.


Unless you have been lifting for a good seven years, you are more than likely a beginner lifter. Even the intermediate lifters can easily be considered beginners. What defines a beginner lifter is adaptation. An advanced lifter has maxed out his or her adaptation responses to the point where even minuscule progress may take a year to produce. These are people who compete at elite Olympic levels and their programming is designed years out from competitions for them to peak and maybe, just maybe the training will manifest a result.

The rest of us are beginners; simply because our bodies can adapt to stress much more actively. A heavy set of squats, a good meal or five, and a solid night’s sleep and all of the sudden, our bodies change. We adapt to facilitate and negate the stress with more work capacity. This is called the law of accommodation. It is also why you can’t just keep doing the same thing and expect results. So what do we do? We add weights to the bar to stimulate the same adaptation response. The cool thing is that for beginners, the programming is simple and focused around progress.

Here are a few approaches:
First let’s define a hypothetical lifter.
Hypothetical lifter –
                Jack, Male, 165lb, beginner lifter.
                                1rms: squat – 185; dead lift – 250; Press – 105; Power Clean – 135

Linear Progression:

I linear program is one that elicits adaptation after every training session. It is phenomenally effective and work so elegantly. But, and this is a big BUT: it’s brutal. The idea dates back to the ancient Greek days when Milo the wrestler carried a calf around a track every day. The calf grew slowly and incrementally, and as such Milo’s body adapted to the ever-increasing load and demand of the calf. In time, Milo ended up carrying a full-grown bull around the track, but logically, he would have never achieved this task without the daily progressively increasing overload training imposed upon him by the growing calf.

A training protocol would essentially follow that logic. Every training session requires the lifter to lift a little more than the previous session.

So a squatting set would look like this for Jack.

5 @ 135 (~<75 135.="" 135="" 1rm="" 5="" o:p="" of="">

The last set of 5+ is the kicker. That’s where you get to lay down your worth and squat until your legs fall off or you pass out.

The next week:
5 @ 140, 5 @ 140, 5+ @ 140.

So slowly but surely; most importantly: CONSISTENTLY and PERSISTENTLY, jack will keep adding small increments of weight for his body to adapt against and that last set of 5+ will really stress the body maximally. He’ll use the same gradual incremental progressive overload model for the other lifts as well. And he’s going to get stronger. No two ways about this; the body will adapt.

Eventually, he might stall out and fail to make progress. No problem. All Jack has to do is “Reset”. Let’s say his last successful session ended with a set of 5 reps at 205. That’s huge progress, but he missed a rep at 210. Jack’s next squat session will reset him to 90% of the last successful session. So 205 x .9 = 184.5; round down to 180. So the next session will look like  this:

5 @ 180. 5 @ 180, 5+ @ 180. 

So not only is this 45 pounds of progress since the last starting point, the last set of 5+ (the + is the important part) will pick up the slack from resetting to a lighter weight. Use this approach for all of the lifts and you will make incredible progress as long as you follow this program consistently. If you start missing days and opting to do other things, then your body won’t invest in strength and you’ll fizzle out rather quickly. I know this for a fact. I followed a linear progression for a solid 18+ months. It works as long as you commit to it. If you want to do a little of everything and cherry pick your workouts, then this won’t be for you. You will fail more often than not and progress will be elusive at best.

So plan on adding 5 pounds to the squat, 1-2 pounds to the press, 5 pounds to the dead lift, and 1-5 pounds to the clean for every session where the lift is revisited.
Many different variants exist, but they all basically follow this approach.

Monthly Progress:

There comes a point where daily/weekly progress becomes unsustainable or life makes it a bit hard to keep up with the demands of physiology. Not everyone can handle the progressively escalating load demands. Workouts become scary at best and form takes a back seat to the numbers.This is where a monthly progress method becomes useful. The idea here is that if you focus on making progress in your 65-85% or 1RM ranges, then theoretically, your 1RM will also progress.

Example: if I make Jack squat 135 (75%) 5 times today, 6 times tomorrow, 7 times the next day and so on, we can assume that by the end of the month Jack got stronger.

Lucky for us, someone figured out a more effective periodization than simply battering the body repeatedly: enter the 5/3/1 method. This method utilizes monthly progress. It is slow and steady and very effective because much more focus is placed on form and volume over high intensity.

The program follows a weekly breakdown of monthly baselines.

In this case, Jack would use his 185lb 1RM squat as the starting THEORETICAL MAX. But, to enhance form and progress, he would reduce his tested 1RM to 90%. So 185 x .90 = ~165. So the ACTUAL starting 1RM is 165lbs.

** Note: This method applies to all of the lifts. The squat is being used as the example.

The 5/3/1 program incrementally increases the loads weekly as a percentage of the 1RM for 4 weeks at a time. Each lift being trained once per week. So you’re not jumping into the unknown every day like you would with a linear progression. You’re usually lifting weights well below your maximal efforts.

So for the squat, it would look like this:

Week 1: Warm up; 5x @65%(105lbs); 5x @75%(120lbs): 5+ @85%(140lbs). DONE!
Week 2: Warm up; 3x @70%(115lbs); 3x @80%(130lbs); 3+ @90%(145lbs). Done!
Week 3: Warm up; 5x @75%(120lbs); 3x @85%(140lbs); 1+ @95%(150lbs). Done!
Week 4 (deload/recovery): Warm up; 5x @40%(65lbs); 5x @50%(80lbs); 5x @60%(100lbs). Done!

At the end of this 4 week cycle Jack would simply add 10lbs to his Theoretical 1rm: 185 + 10 = 195. Then, he’d once again, he’d reduce that to 90%: 175. This is his new Actual baseline 1RM. Thus the progress continues and the resets work the same way as in a linear progression. Where does the progress come from, you ask? From the sets that have the +. This is where you have an opportunity to blast through what you previously thought was impossible. You can even use a formula to estimate where your progress is taking you: Weight x Repetitions x .0333 + Weight = Estimated 1RM; but don’t worry too much about this.

This program works. Plain and simple. It is relatively less stressful and leaves you open to doing plenty of other activities for workouts.

This program is highlighted in the back of some of your log books. Let us know if you need one.

Also, there is an iPhone app called "Big Lifts" that will track things for you.

So choose the lifts you want to make progress in, hopefully all of them, but not necessarily and come in on the lifting days (Monday, Wednesday, or Friday) and hit those numbers. The most important thing is to adhere to a program; the more simple the better. Adhere to it until you reach your goals and make the progress you were shooting for. Until you do, don’t go cherry-picking and lallygagging around doing a little of everything. If you want to squat 315 and you've been stuck at 185, well, you have work to do. You should probably aim to squat 195; then build on that. Investing a month here and a month there and hoping something hatches just won’t work. Strength requires applied commitment.

Reminder: This is how the new 5-day layout will break down.
Monday – Strength (Squat + Press), Assistance lifts (optional TBA), Complimentary short Met-Con
Tuesday – Varied workouts (standard BHIP protocol).
Wednesday – Strength (Dead lifts/RDL/Rack-pulls), Assistance lifts (optional TBA), Short Met-Con
Thursday – Varied workouts (standard BHIP protocol).
Friday – Strength (Squat + Press), Assistance lifts (optional TBA), Complimentary short Met-Con

Again, if you don’t want to lift or are to beat up to lift, you can side-step all that business altogether and do a met-con or anything else to your heart’s content as long as it is suitable.
I hope this helps shed a little light on the protocols. And if this is all over your head, don’t worry; we’ll have plenty of coaching on hand to help you figure things out.


* I realized this is an exercise in futility upon reading this.. but maybe you'll learn something.

Friday, January 25, 2013


It's raining, folks. The condition are quite undesirable and less-than safe. So we're canceling all evening session, but feel free to come inside of The Wooden Center and exercise or do whatever blows your hair back.

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Changes are coming


From the start, the intent of ongoing BHIP was to be a strength and conditioning program that addresses an individual’s work capacity comprehensively utilizing time-tested fundamentals of strength training and metabolic conditioning applied to the daily demands of normal life. No gimmicks. No Hype.

In order to stimulate adaptations that strengthen and prepare the body and mind to compensate accordingly, we utilize overloads and intensities that sufficiently stress the neurological and physiological systems of the human body and thus effectively increase work capacity and general physical preparedness relative to daily demands.

In short, strength and conditioning makes a person more capable at addressing and dealing with the demands and rigors of daily life and more tolerant to adversities. With all other variables equally, a stronger person with a higher work capacity will be more productive.


Previous short comings:

Strength is the foundation of all training. At the very least, strength is injury prevention as a stronger body is more resilient. At most, strength is an awesome display of human potential. Strength is the only thing that our muscles are responsible for, at the end of the day. They contract and they relax. How hard they contract is how one’s strength is defined. But strength also cascades into the other facets of life and sport. And happiness.

This girl looks rather happy after dead lifting 512lbs while weighing 136 pounds.

In a way strength IS conditioning. A stronger person can endure more and produce more functional output before fatigue sets in then a less-strong individual. Suppose two people have to move televisions weighing 80lbs each. One person can maximally lift 100lbs. The other person can maximally lift 200lbs. The first person is carrying 80% of his max with every TV, while the second person is carrying a mere 40% of his max. Logically, the person carrying the greater percentage of his max will experience fatigue sooner and thus will succumb to that fatigue, regardless of how well conditioned he may be. The stronger person is also more resistant to fatigue in addition to being better resistant to injury.
Look how happy she is. Because she's so strong and doesn't get tired easily.

Conditioning is also dependent on strength. If the workout calls for a high volume of something like wall-ball shots or power cleans or something else that involves moving weights, the person who can move more weight quicker will experience the better conditioning effect, while the less-advantaged person will get bogged down by the weight or will be forced to use lighter weights with less overload effect and thus less effective conditioning.

Not too worried about Summer Krasinski's work capacity. She squats 200lbs 8 times and makes it look easy. She seems pretty content with that as well.

Unfortunately, the traditional layout of fitness programs is not conducive to strength training; only conditioning. The current format of constantly varied workout does produce a strengthening effect, but it is incidental and passive. True strength training requires a systematic approach involving incremental and progressive overload. Maintaining a scheduled routine, or a program, is integral to this type of training. Results have to be made and measured on a fixed periodic basis. This may mean adhering to a schedule for several weeks, or months; sometimes years; and for some, the rest of their lives.

 This is hard to do if not nearly impossible in a group format unless everyone involved shares this focus. Special dedicated time, space, equipment, and programming are required.


3/5 day model:


BHIP will soon be offered 5 days a week. BUT all members will be able to elect to go to a MAXIMUM of 3 workout sessions per week. This means that everyone can elect the focus and purpose of their exercising. One individual may want to focus on conditioning while another can focus primarily on strength training. Here’s how it will break down:

Monday – Strength; assistance work; or pick-a-lift; or a short optional complimentary met-con.

Tuesday – Met-cons: likely 3 different options. Team workouts; normal BHIP style stuff.

Wednesday – Strength; assistance lifts; optional lifts; optional short met-con

Thursday – Same as Tuesday.

Friday – Same as Monday and Wednesday.


So everyone can choose what to do with their time and how to invest their efforts. The workouts will be very similar if not identical to what everyone is already used to, except now, those who want to lift more instead of just get huffy and puffy can. Those who have no interest in lifting weights still have the option to completely sidestep that component. Anyone can still do the short met-con and forgo the lifting on MWF as well. But those who want to invest in strength will now have the potential with cycle strength training as much as they want rather than only once a week.

This will also decongest the class sizes and will make equipment utilization much easier. Hopefully this is welcome news to all of you as our popularity is causing a bit of swelling at the seams.

Again, we will soon be offering 5 workout sessions a week, of which you can select any 3. 3. Before you start emailing us about coming to all 5, please reread this a few times: 3. 3 sessions per week. Three. You get to pick 3. Choose 3. Choose 3 based on what you want to focus your efforts on.

Once we are underway with the strength options, I will introduce some strength training protocols. Essentially, the programming will be based on simple linear progression models. But some of you might be familiar with 5/3/1 style or something similar. You’ll have the option of following any protocol you like as long as it is safe and well-suited for you. I will be there along with other instructors to coach and help you perfect your lifts and achieve new benchmarks of fitness and work capacity. Hopefully many of you are excited about this. It will be fun.