Spicing Up Your Workout


One-handed tyre flip
Shane, a Cornell U. football player, nails a 1 handed flip 2 days after major wrist surgery!
I'll keep this article short and to the point. Ever find yourself in a rut? For weeks I've woke up at the same time, ate the same things, and have had seemingly the same conversation with my co-workers day after day. It happens to everyone at some point in their lives. The days become stale and unexciting. Then one day you do something out of the ordinary, like taking the time to make your favorite breakfast. That small change all of a sudden makes it a good day!

The same shake up is required in training. The basics stay the same, just as you go to work every day and eat every day. You should keep the big lifts, squats, deads, presses, etc as primary in your program. However, set aside a few minutes at the end of your workout to mix it up. Grab a plate and try to flip it and catch it, pick up some 35's and try to pinch grip them, or attempt an isometric hold on the glute ham raise. It doesn't really matter what it is, as long as it's different from your usual routine!

I'll give you some ideas by explaining a few shake ups we have attempted. At the end of a lower training day in July, we decided to attempt one handed tire flips. There isn't much of a standard or protocol on how to accomplish this, but we decided to give it a shot. At first, we couldn't get our hands underneath the tire, so we ended up rolling it into the yard and digging a small hole under one of the treads. It was just large enough for us to slide our hand under. After a few attempts people started landing the one handed flips. It was a great sense of accomplishment for those involved! They forgot about the strain of the dead lifts, GHRs and chain step-ups just a few minutes before. The next day, everyone had sore legs, hands and forearms primarily from the tire work.


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Chains and bands
Pat Messing Around w/ Swinging Chains and Band Resistance
Other days include push-up contests, farmers walking for distance holding odd objects, and hex head pinch grip flips. Again, keep your primary lifts the same, but when you take a few minutes to try something new, the training becomes memorable and fun!

Hit something crazy and then tell me about it so I can try it! I am also making a new blog section at Synergy-Athletics.com just for user submitted creative and crazy lifts! This way, we can help each other spice up our workouts!


Joe Hashey

Joe Hashey is a CSCS through the NSCA, owner of Synergy Athletics and author of the superb Bull Strength manual. Take advantage of the Synergy Athletics Free Newsletter by signing up at the website. All subscribers get instructions on how make a 3 inch independently revolving thick bar, a free athlete training report, and an insight into Bull Strength!



Like this? Check out :

DIY Equipment Ideas.

Stuck for ideas? Try these.

The Home Gym 2007.

Wonderful place to train.

2005 : A Summary.

My take on lifting in 2005.

Welcome to the Gymchats IV : 137 - 156.

Over the past few months we've had some superb discussions on Google+ : thank you all. It really is fantastic to hear your ideas and techniques on such a wide variety of training topics.



Of course, if you enjoyed these, I'd highly recommend grabbing the Strength & Fitness Newsletter. Delivered weekly, and absolutely free.

(there's also a Daily Update, if you're looking for an even larger dose of training-related goodness.)

NB : If you'd like to write a guest post for Straight to the Bar - I love hearing how other people are training - get in touch. If you've got a fitness competition or seminar coming up, add it to the calendar.

Look forward to hearing from you.


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