Welcome to Straight to the Bar

Scott Bird. Artwork by Vince Palko.
Yes, I love the deadlift.
If you’ve just joined us, welcome. Here you’ll find everything that grunts, groans and ticks in the world of strength training. In short, this site is the home of all things strength.


Incidentally, this site’s been helping people become fitter, healthier and stronger since January 2004. If you’ve just joined us, I highly recommend subscribing to the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter, which contains details of new posts on the site, freshly-minted video demonstrations & tutorials, details of upcoming Gymchats and a whole lot more.

And yes, it’s absolutely free.



Quick Tip : The Stages of Workout Nutrition


This tip is a brief look at the major stages of workout nutrition, and their goals. A bit of fine-tuning here can go a long way indeed. From Gymchat 133 - Workout Nutrition :
Kurtis Frank
Kurtis Frank.
Any meal can contribute to a workout (glycogen replenishment mostly), but generally workout nutrition is broken into three segments. The pre-workout, the intra-workout (optional dependent on goals), and the post-workout. Pre-workout is literally just a meal you eat before you hit the gym. It holds more importance than other meals (say, breakfast if you train in the PM) since the nutrients you ingest at this meal will still be floating around in your blood when it comes time for a workout. Intra-workout is typically something you bring to the gym to sip on, and where stuff typically gets all fancy with supplementation and is the area most people like to talk about. (This includes post-workout shakes consumed immediately after training) Post-workout is when you get home and make a nice meal. There are typically higher rates of muscular metabolism and generally more metabolic direction to muscle and away from fat mass (compared to other meals). So nutrients post workout tend to be put to better fates than other meals.
Good stuff.
NB : We first looked at this one in the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter (part of the Strength Kit). If you'd like to have it sent to you automatically (free!) each week, just add your email here.


Enter the Dragon


Fantastic. I was lucky enough over the weekend to re-watch all of the Bruce Lee movies (as well as a couple of the more recent documentaries); with my favourite still being Enter the Dragon. Love that film. If it's one you've never seen, definitely give it a run. Quite apart from the '70s charm, it's a superb display of Lee's incredible abilities. Enter the Dragon.

Gymchat 259 - How to Choose the Right Gym for YOU (Jaime Smith)

Find the right place to train.


Whether you're just embarking on your strength-training journey, or have been lifting for years : how do you find the 'right' gym? The one that has the equipment you want, the people that can help; the one that best suits your needs? This week we'll be tackling these, and all of the underlying questions they invoke. Helping us get a handle on this critical area is Personal Trainer Jaime Smith, together with Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett. Fantastic.
NB : We love hearing from as many people as possible. Join Jaime and Josh on the Hangout, or fire in your questions via the Q&A. Full details below. And if you'd like to point your friends/colleagues to the discussion, just use the 'share' button at the top of that page. The more the merrier.

Squat Like an ANIMAL 2014 - 500lb for Reps

How many times can you squat 500lb?


How many times can you squat 500lb?

NB : We first looked at this one in the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter (part of the Strength Kit). If you'd like to have it sent to you automatically (free!) each week, just add your email here.


Looking At : Sep 28, 2014

What we were talking about this week on Google+, Twitter and the Daily 'Paper'



During the past week we've discussed a number of great links; on Google+, Twitter, Facebook and so on. Here are a few of my favourites.

StrongerGrip BandGrips Handle and StrongerGrip BandAnchor


StrongerGrip BandGrips.Fantastic. Ryan goes into a bit more detail over on the Strongergrip Blog, but in short : you'll want these. Beautifully simple idea. These will be available in a couple of days. In the meantime, the pre-order page briefly...

Gymchat 258 - Fitness Business Strategies (Matt Palfrey)

What works, and what doesn't?


If you've been involved with the fitness industry for any length of time, chances are you've thought about setting up your own gym. Perhaps you've already got one. Either way - how do you promote it? Attract new customers? Learn about what works, and what doesn't?

Quick Tip : Getting Back Into It

Take it easy. It'll come back.


Returning to Heavy Training After a Break
Returning to Heavy Training After a Break
If you've been away from the iron for a while, how do you get back into it?
Vic takes a thorough look at this in the 'Returning to Heavy Training After a Break' ebook. For a brief overview though, check out the discussion we held on that very same topic.
In Gymchat 136 - Heavy Training after a Break, Vic noted :
I lost a LOT of strength on some lifts. It was surprising. That's why that initial 3 weeks of lighter work was important to me - it was smart to underestimate my strength at first.
And
It's important to consciously do less those first few weeks. I was off for almost 2 years - as a rule I did not put any more than 135lbs on the bar the first week. I did not push any sets to failure the next two weeks while still staying at 5 reps or less for most sets.
Good stuff.

NB : We first looked at this one in the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter (part of the Strength Kit). If you'd like to have it sent to you automatically (free!) each week, just add your email here.


Ascending Pull Up Ladder

Great bit of technique fine-tuning.


Great exercise, and an interesting bit of technique fine-tuning. Nice one.

NB : We first looked at this one in the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter (part of the Strength Kit). If you'd like to have it sent to you automatically (free!) each week, just add your email here.


Looking At : Sep 21, 2014

What we were talking about this week on Google+, Twitter and the Daily 'Paper'



During the past week we've discussed a number of great links; on Google+, Twitter, Facebook and so on. Here are a few of my favourites.



Like to contribute something? I love hearing about how other people are training; if you’d like to write an article, record a video or tell us about a site you’ve discovered, get in touch.


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As you can imagine, there’s an incredible amount of material on this site. Articles, video demonstrations & tutorials, the weekly Gymchats and a whole lot more. To keep up with everything going on in the World of Strength, sign up for the weekly Strength & Fitness Newsletter.

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