New and Lost

Good Day to everyone. My names Rob and i am a 35 year old father living in northeast PA. After a battle with life, I have decided that I need to do something positive for myself and my recovery. I have decided that I want to get into strongman. Now I know a bunch of people will laugh and tell me an out of shape 35 year old has no place or chance, but I have a desire beyond all others.

I am here looking for any advice, thoughts, anyone is willing to give. Also looking for advice on beginners workouts that will show some early results even small, that will help motivate me to keep going. Thanks in advance for anything any one has to offer, positive or negative.


99% of people who have a passion for strength would NEVER tell someone the have no place or chance. The 1% that would doesn’t deserve to train.

If you’re a complete beginner, go with Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe. That will get you a base level of strength before you need to start working on actual Strongman lifts.

Start with one of the tried and true programs and stick with that for a while. This is important not only begin establishing a base of size and strength but also one of knowledge and experience. You’ll be able to get an idea of how your body responds to various stimuli and build your repertoire and technique. Educate yourself in training and nutrition, but don’t rush it. Focus on a handful of men and women that have proven themselves in both their feats and their writing.

What are your current goals?

x2 what the others have said.

I spent 2 years building up a strength base before entering Strongman specific work. I’m not saying that’s necessary, but it helped me tolerate the heavy loads for events fairly well without any major injury so far. I’m still weak, and still learning (only been strength training since 2009) but it certainly helped.

Side note: I wish I’d put more focus into my OHP instead of my bench early on. I think that may have cost me a bit.

Hi. I’m really especially strong, by the standards of folks on here, which I say in the interests of full disclosure. Having said which, I’m giving out advice anyway, because I think I can help. What other posters have said about developing a base of strength is absolutely true. One of the strength coach/article contributors on here wrote recently that ‘if you can’t do 100 pushups, you have no business going near the bench press.’ I’m unsure about that, but here’s what advice I have:

Kettlebells are ace. They’re a trad strongman tool, they’re cheap, they don’t take up much space and there’s loads of carryover into the trongman moves you’ll want to do down the road. Check out Pavel Tsatouline (sp sorry) online or Steve Cotter (who is probably a genetic freak), or buy ‘Enter the Kettlebell,’ a good simple introduction to Kb training.

Bodyweight moves are more than crunches. As people get more open minded and results/evidence oriented, you find even bodybuilders and powerlifters using gymnastic movements like levers or muscleups to gain strength. Progressive calisthenics is a good place to start. Try throwing in some handstand work, lots of jump squats and pullups: pullups are a good tool for developing the shoulder musculature for overhead pressing even though it’s the opposite movement pattern.

For beginners there’s nothing like the muscle-up. And that’s what your first attempt will look like: nothing like a muscle up. But by the time you get it you’ll have gained some confidence and lots of strength and mobility. I’ll check back to this thread over the next few days and if you express interest I’ll post my patented muscle-up progressions for you.

Dan Johns, who writes for TN amongst other things, has a free ebook out called ‘from the ground up’ that’s a great place to start. It preaches the O-lifts as a solution to everything which I’m not sure about, but it does offer encouragement and lots of good training advice as well as the ‘rapid ascent’ program for beginners to strength training. When I began I couldn’t do the warmup so I skipped it, don’t skip it, theres some good advice.

Everybody started out bad at this. Everybody’s trying to get better. The people who are best at it are often encouraging, polite and friendly (being like that doesn’t mean you’re good at it though). Everyone’s an enthusiast, no-one wants to put you off and you certainly should’t feel you don’t have a a chance or listen to anyone that tells you that.

Now might be a good time to edit this: ‘I’m really especially strong’ - to read what I meant to write: ‘I’m really NOT especially strong.’ See how the rest of the first paragraph makes more sense, and less like I’ve come on to a forum frequented by serious strenght athletes to claim that I’m the strongest person here? Yeah. Typo.

But I think the advice I gave is good for building a base of strength for future efforts. Maybe it’s not the best training once you’re into strongman stuff proper but if you’re ‘out of shape,’ as the OP says he is, it seems a sensible place to start.

kettlebells pushups and muscle ups to do strongman?

to the orignal poster

I don’t know how close you are but i know if i was within 2 hour drive i’d go here. It’s in PA and ran by Mike Jenkins who just won the Arnold classic

Thanks for the replies, I was out of town unexpectedly. There are not many if any strongmen/powerlifters in the gym Im going to which I think has been where Im getting the shitty attitude from, because they are mostly there to to look good. spar4tee you asked what my current goals are.

Honestly, they are trying to get a good beginner program together based on what I want to accomplish, learn how to do the lifts properly so as not to get hurt, and see some progress to help motivate me to continue. Injurytime, Id love to see the muscle up, Im not opposed to trying any advice anyone gives short of NOT trying to do it at my age.

Yes I am out of shape. But like I said before, say everyday I look in the mirror, and will continue to say, DESIRE TO CHANGE AND BECOME SOMETHING WILL OVERCOME!!!

KALLE THANKS!!! I used to work in Harrisburg where that is and never knew that existed. Its about 2 hours from me now but looks well worth the investment to make the drive.

[quote]RForeman wrote:
KALLE THANKS!!! I used to work in Harrisburg where that is and never knew that existed. Its about 2 hours from me now but looks well worth the investment to make the drive.[/quote]

Even if you could just go once a week it would be worth it man

I also believe in PA is IRONSPoRt GYM…not sure where…they have both strongman and powerlifters there