Awesomeness in Training Session

My friend/gym owner where I train hosted a stone seminar over the weekend. He’s a 200 lbs competitor at a world-class level. I’ve touched stones less than 5 times in the last year, and I’m back in the gym for 3 weeks after a 4+ month layoff, and I’m weighing 190-195 right now, so I was super happy to manage a 330 stone for 1 rep. That might have actually been a PR for me at this bodyweight. I’ve done 360 in competition as a 181 competitor… but I was actually walking around almost 10 lbs heavier than I am right now, and I was in MUCH better training condition.

The gym owner went head to head with another friend with a 345 lbs stone-over-bar. Other friend weighs over 300 lbs. These guys managed 13+ reps each! I was blown away. They had 30 seconds on each side to rest once the other guy got the stone over. I couldn’t fucking believe a 200 lbs dude could get a 345 stone for 13 damn reps.

Anyway. That’s my story for the day. Anyone else got a good one?


First and foremost, 13 reps is damn is impressive for anyone that is not a HW pro, much less an U200 dude.

Umm, I rowed a 70 lb dumbbell with no pain lol (coming back from a pretty big lat tear), that’s about the best story I have right now.

I did see a show recently with a max axle clean and press, the U231 winner hit 325 and he was the lightest middle weight at the show (the guy normally competes U200, but didn’t cut weight for this show and was walking around at 210). I also got to see 2 HW guys going head to head, the winner hit 365 and the 2nd place guy hit 355.

At the same show there was a max mammoth bar deadlift, the U231 guy hit 700 for the event win and the HW event winner hit 775 for a solid RPE 6 lol. That was all he needed to win.

I still think the single most impressive thing I have ever seen in strongman at middleweight (from an amateur) was Justin Loy running a 700 lb yoke 120 ft in under 18s (that was in prep for 2020 SC nats)

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jesus that’s fast.

I would say literally anything cambidude is doing right now just blows me away (although obviously he’s pro status). He’s turned into a goddamn monster. Basically owning the sport the way Anthony was for a couple years, but IMO against better competition.

We have a max axle at the show I’m doing end of January, and I think we’re going to see some crazy numbers. I’ve got a HW friend (the dude in the story above) who will be hitting over 400, hoping to set a national record if things go well. I’ve seen him hit 380 for a triple in training. Derek, the other guy in that stone-off can hit over 300 on the axle as well, he’s got the Texas State record for the 200 class, although he won’t be competing, he’s running the show. I think it’s 315 or so. And he’s capable of more.

Man, no kidding. You’re not going to find many MW shows where ANY middleweight competitor has to get that for 1… much less 1+. 13 was stupid. It really showed me how much of a gap I need to close to get back to that level.

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Best axle I have ever hit was 285x3, I don’t know what my max is.

Best stone load I have ever done was a 5x2 with a 345 stone, 30s rest between sets. I’ll put my stone loading up against damn near anyone, even some of the pros. Otherwise I’m just average lol

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I think my body type lends itself to being one of the best LW stone lifters in the world, if I really wanted to push that hard. My height is a huge advantage. The last time I did stones on a big stage, I was right there with the best, and I think I could do even better now. If I really pushed it, I bet I could get close to 400 and still be in a cut-range of LW.


That would certainly be close to a WR for a U175 guy. I think the U200 WR is 441 and the U231 WR is 455-460

Those are stupid. lol. It’s crazy to think about how far stones and deadlifts have come in the last 10 years. It wasn’t THAT long ago that there were plenty of heavyweight pros that couldn’t do a 440 stone.

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I think I saw something like the 2005 WSM log lift for reps was like 265

The original Atlas stones went up to 160 kg, and I think only a few guys completed them all (I think Bill K, and Jon Pall finished them in the first time they were used). I think that was before tacky though.

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I think you’re right on the no tacky part. It makes a HUGE difference. I have loaded a 300 lb stone once or twice without tacky and that pretty hard.

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I haven’t done strongman much, but my gym has most of the implements. I think I remember doing a 200 lb stone with no tacky, and it was tough AF. I know I couldn’t do much more than that. Maybe 210 lbs.

YEP! hahahaha I watched that contest at my gym one day. I had to rewind it to make sure I heard the weight right. AND there were multiple dudes who either zeroed or just got 1 or 2 reps. And now you’ve got 80kg guys hitting 330, lol.

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that’s around my max without tacky. I’ve actually shouldered a 300 stone too, but it was a relatively small diameter one.

I use sleeves now, and have been for a few years. Good sleeves, for me, help almost as much as tacky does. When I do add tacky, I use VERY little. I’ve often found it best to just rely on the residual tacky on the stones when I’m competing, since everyone else fucking covers their entire body in the stuff. I put it on the back of my hand and wait to use it when I hit the heavy stones that no one else made it to, haha.

You could do more after 1 or 2 sessions. It is tough, but you can learn a lot quickly, and make massive jumps in your first few sessions with stones.


I think learning how to use tacky would help as well. It is humbling struggling with 200 lb stone with a 600 lb deadlift haha. Maybe I’ll delve into them. I don’t like how messy it is either though. Even if I don’t use tacky, I am gonna get tacky from the stone on me.


If you do decide to give them a run again, just wrap your forearms with tape. It’s cheap, disposable, and does add a fair amount of grip, without being so messy. I also hate tacky, I rarely use it in training. And I love my leather sleeves (I have 2 different pair of them), but they’re expensive, so I wouldn’t recommend going that route to a casual stone lifter, lol. For training purposes, you’re really mostly going to be trying to make things harder on yourself anyway, so reserving tacky for just the heaviest training sessions, and contests, is really ideal to me.

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I like the A7 stone sleeves for training, but I don’t like using them all the time because they have a tendency of sliding down my arm. It really screws up my loading, but I like using them at least every other week if I am training stones weekly. This helps save my arms from becoming ground beef.

Are you using stiff sleeves that don’t slide down or bunch up?

Stones are very technique intensive. The technique isn’t hard to nail down, but stones are exponentially harder if you don’t know that technique. It also GREATLY depends on how clean the stone is. If the stone is dirty and your tacky doesn’t really stick, it makes lapping and loading very hard.

Once you nail down your technique, you’ll be 1-motion loading a 200 lb stone with ease.

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I have the shaw sleeves, which are pretty stiff, and I have a pair that I bought from a dude in Florida who makes them. They’re less stiff, but really don’t slide because they fit so well. I’ll take a picture of them when I get home, I think they’re great.