There is a huge difference between power-lifting competitions and Olympic lifting – strongman events are what you can call unconventional. The reason for this is because depending on the promoter of the event there will be different types of lifts that need to be performed. Granted, there are the usual tire flip, truck pull and atlas stone event but there are several events to choose from so if you want to train for a strongman competition you can’t train the same you would as a power-lifter or Olympic lifter. Training with more than just the traditional barbell movements is very important.
What you have to realize is that training for a strongman competition is not an exact science. Another important aspect that needs to be brought to light is the need for cardiovascular conditioning that is necessary to compete in strongman competitions. The cardio conditioning used in strongman training can be seen as “power-cardio” because walking on a treadmill for 10 minutes is not the same as pulling a truck 60 feet. The importance of functional strength is enormous because it is very different than lifts that are mainly done in the gym. Functional strength requires power, stability, and also explosiveness throughout the entire body.
Sample Strongman Workout:
Deadlift from ground: 3 sets of 5 reps.
Deadlift partials (bar set 18” from ground): 2 sets of 5 reps, 2 sets of 2 reps
Stiff legged deadlifts: 3 set of 10 reps.
Leg Curls: 3 sets of 10 reps
Bent over rows: 3 sets of 10 reps. (straight bar for 2 hand) (kettlebells or dumbells for 1 handed)
Shoulder Shrugs: 3 set of 10 reps, 2 sets of 5 reps.
15 minutes of various ab crunches
Bench Press: 5 sets of 5 reps
Triceps extension: 5 sets of 10 reps (kettlebells can be used for seated of lying extensions)
Biceps curl (straight bar) 4 sets of 10 reps
Dips (weighted if you can) 6 sets of 10 reps
Power Cardio: Suggestions –farmer’s walk with dumbbells, Carry 100lb plates, carry and load sand bags
Squat or Leg Sled: 3 set of 10 reps, 4 sets of 5 reps
Leg Curl: 4 sets of 10 reps
Calf Raises: 5 sets of 20 reps
Power Cardio: Suggestions -carry and load sand bags, push or pull vehicles, stadium stairs carrying weight
Military Press: 3 set of 10 reps, 2 sets of 5 reps
Kettlebell Isometric Shoulder Exercises: front raise and hold, side raise and hold. These are great for training for the Crucifix Hold in Strongman
Power Cleans: 3 set of 10 reps, 2 sets of 5 reps
Full Pull with Kettlebell or One Armed Snatch with Dumbell: 3 sets of 10
15 minutes of ab work with a medicine ball
Big Power Cardio Day
Work with Strongman Implements you have or just find some heavy items and lay out a carrying medley
Wind Sprints at 80 percent effort
5 – 100 yards 5 – 50 yards (then add as you need)
This is great for building endurance and wind!
Suggestion: Get a massage on this day