T Nation

First Strongman Comp


As the title says I'm going for my first strongman style competition. It may seem a bit timid for what you guys are used to.

Its designed and taken part by those who don't actually compete in strongman, but are involved In Other sports to come and have a go, however from what I can gather a lot of blokes are pretty dedicated too it.

The events involve a circus DB press, a Deadlift event, an object loading event and I'm not entirely sure what else!
As you can see I'm horrendously unprepared and originally put my name down for the laugh, but now my competitive side is rearing it's ugly head and I'd love to give those guys something to think about!

The issue being I do t have acces to much equipment and I'm not entirely sure how I should be training, I've had a good look round on here and made a rough template. my aim is to be strong enough with good condition to make up for my lack of skill/technique, probably a terrible plan!

It involves 2 workouts a day, twice a week using what equipment I can make, borrow and buy, i'll be In The gym for the first workout focousing on getting nice and strong and the second wil, be at a local quarry with hill sprints, explosive and Event like movements

Horizontal push 
Horizontal pull 

Hill sprints/kettle bell work

Front squat

Shot putt/ hill sprints/circus DB

Vertical push
Vertical pull

sled work/farmers walk/axle clean and press 

The axle and sled will be home made, I've already got a 20kg kettle bell and the 50kg DB I'm hoping to buy from my gym which has just got all new DBs and wants rid of the old.

Anyone got any pointers? Or just want to tell me I'm an idiot and I need to be more prepared!

Oh and the comp is on august 20th


You're an idiot and need to be more prepared.

Also, when loading, make sure that you keep the stone/keg close to your body at all times. Press it against your chest and never let go!

NEVER curl the weight up on a clean-style event. Learn how to clean explosively.

Drive with your hips. Don't make your poor biceps pick up the slack when you're not lifting enough with your legs (soooo many gym-lifters-gone-strong man do this).

That's about all I got in terms of general pointers.


Thanks very much mate!

I've been advised to work on power cleans and direct arm work more (I never train my arms direct) the cleans for the event and arm work for injury prevention. Any merit to this?

I may have found a gym with a proper sized tire too, on nodding terms with the gaffer so going to ask him if I can go round and have a play.

Posted a new idea for training on my log, you can get on it through my profile or I can copy and paste it across here, but I'd be keen on you opinion. I think the twice a day training will be the way for me ass I'm not strong enough to simply focus on events.

Edit: my idea:

Monday: am
Front squat
Tbar row
Power clean
1 arm Deadlift

Circus DB
car push

Lower body movement
Bench press

Axle c+p
Arm over arm car pull

weighted chins
1 arm Deadlift

Carry variations
Any throwing event I can come up with


Yes and yes on the power cleans and direct arm work. Also, before you step to the tire, always do a few heavy DB curls to properly warm up your biceps.

Personally, I think 2-a-days are a bad idea in terms of recovery. But since you're 18 years old, 10 feet tall and bulletproof why not give it a try.

There's nothing wrong per se with your training plan, as long as you can do it, recover from it and keep getting stronger.

However, considering that your plan is kinda all over the place, IF you should find that you're stalling on your lifts, I would advise you to do the following, assuming a 3-day work week:

-Front Squat
-1 arm Deadlift
-Pump sets for arms

-Weighted Chins (superset with bench)
-Power Cleans
-T-Bar row

-Car Push/Arm over arm
-1 or 2 carry variations
-Axle C&P
-Circus DB
Pump sets for arms (optional)


That does look a lot more organised I've gotta be honest!

I'm 6 feet 5 so I'm not that far off lol.

I was expecting to be alright with the twice a day training as for the past year with the boxing the intensity has really kicked up a notch, and twice a day training was a regular thing, hell before my last fight it wasn't uncommon to train 3 times in a day. (strength work, sparring/pads, then speed and conditioning stuff)

You template looks to be the better way of going about things, although I think I'm going to swap front squats and Deadlifts round as I've never been able to FS before Deadlifts.

I understand you've got your first comp coming up too? When's the date and how're you feeling?


Yeah like I said, if you FEEL that you're up to it you can try 2-a-days. Maybe do the outlined template and add a second strongman session to every work day. I don't want to hold you back too much if you feel like you have the work capacity.
Like Thibadeau says, the more work you can do while being able to recover, the bigger/stronger you get.

About swapping exercises: Sure! It is advisable though to do back squats before deadlifts to make sure your back is warmed up properly.

The competition's tomorrow. I don't feel anything TBH but that's just me. I'm a bit anxious because my back and forearms are still a bit sore from a Wednesday session that might have been a mistake (I don't like to take entire weeks off though, as I feel like I get weaker and prefer to do a last "run-through" of the events).

I'll prolly make a thread over in the Strong Man forum when I get pictures/vids from the event.


I'm the same with the nerves mate, never really bothered me.

Good luck buddy and thanks for the advise!
I'll look forward to hearing how you do today!