Finding ways to Win… Traveling and Training, being adaptive

Screen Shot 2013-03-30 at 12.53.46 PMI am sitting in my hotel room waiting on my food to arrive and I started to think back to all the different gyms and centers that I have trained in or around since 1990 when I first picked up a copy of Muscular development Magazine or MD as the kids call it today and it hit me. I have trained in some of the best and absolute worst facilities on the planet…and I say that with complete candor and honesty. Through athletics and work I have literally seen them all or a facsimile of something similar. Yet, I hear people all the time talking about their inability to get a good session in because the equipment here or there was dodge or crap and that they will just wait till they get home and get back on track….

Ah the ole’ I will get back on track when I get home story, because the equipment on the road is not up the world class standards of their bubble. Or when I hear people talk about missing reps while away from home because they didn’t get the right pre workout drink or nutrition…or towel…or ego hand job from the pretty cashier that always makes them add a spring to their step on leg day. Do you remember back when you started the pursuit of Iron? Do you remember? When you could do a 16 body part workout at lunch in a pair of jeans and t-shirt, upstairs in the school exercise room? Then get home and do it all again in your basement…Smashing green York’s together until the powder cement poured out on the floor and if needed you could do it all over again when your buddies came over and wanted to do it again? Yes 16 body parts because you were making it up as  you went along!

Danielle Sidell So when I was a kid…doing set after set on equipment fabricated on steal my brother designed in shop class and put together in the basement made me one of fortune! We had actual benches and squat racks, our weights from a store were all matched and perfect. When I actually stepped into a real gym and by what I consider my standards today, wouldn’t even make the top 100…I literally trained for two hours…smashing everything…using everything in the gym. I needed to have everything! I was like a starving man at a fruit stand. I needed it all and I would do it everyday! Sore as shit…eating whatever had sustenance  and drinking a rain drop worth of water but none of that mattered. I could be doing bench press and if the mood struck me I would load up a bar and max deadlift that shit! Not to mention God help the ladies that walked into that place… I was a teenager sweating testosterone…If you laid on my bench when I was done you would grow a beard. In fact I am turning 36 next month and it feels like I just started this journey! Some days I walk into a hotel gym and the smell makes me go from elite level sport performance coach with a plan to...’Lets fuck this place up like my 16 year old self …’ In 2.323 seconds the next thing I know I am doing sets of 30 leg extensions on a Techno Gym because when I am done I don’t want it to forget my name…. I want it to cry out for me at night when I am gone because I was the first person to show it  true passion! To twist the steel as I pour myself into every moment of that experience, to be consumed by the breath…the taste…the touch…the smell… the love. To be that 16 year kid that felt the steel bite my neck for the first time and think that it was going to be my mistress for the rest of my life….



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10 replies

  1. 2003 basra…training kit provided by wrecked vechicle parts and ammo boxes. Great at the time…not so good now as have depleted uranium poisoning! 🙂

  2. Damn, I got a woody reading this

  3. Haha…derek the boxes were 120kg used for biceps curls…obviously! 🙂 Good read! U r right ofcourse,where there is a will to train there is ALWAYS a way!

  4. Awesome Derek. For the love of iron 🙂 My best training sessions were in parks and backyards and with the weight set I drove around in the back of an ’85 Toyota as I travelled the Outback! Building cement barbells in mexican and outback australian communities and lifting junk with a bunch of ripped guys in Caracas central part ..wild weights!

  5. “Smashing green York’s together until the powder cement poured out on the floor….” Oh man, I had this exact set, same gig, same recollection. And I trained from the Arnold Schwarzenegger Encyclopedia of Bodybuilding following an Olympian split. Couldn’t move most of the time, and didn’t grow all that much. I train smarter now, but I’ve still got the attitude, man… it’s never left me.

  6. Your writing has this uncanny ability to transport people into your world, your thoughts and to physically feel what you are feeling. You now have me longing even more for the feeling of a barbell between my fingers and palms again…to say fuck you cortisol! Because my body aches for that feeling you described, the painful pleasure of the weight room.

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