Thursday, March 24, 2011

The St. Cloud Institute for Human Performance

Head over to for our new website. We will still keep this blog up and active, but the new website will be where we will post everything new. That website is a work in progress and will be constantly updated so please bear with us.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Forced Relaxation

315 PR Deadlift

205 PR Deadlift

Jump Squats

5 Rounds
5 Double Kettlebell Clean
10 Burpees

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Closing Big Grippers

Closing Big Grippers

By Heath Sexton

When most people talk about grip strength, the conversation usually very quickly goes towards closing grippers. In this article I will try to detail some different gripper techniques and some different workout tactics. This is by no means a concrete guide to working with grippers, just some insight from a few years of training.

You do not have to have many grippers to be good at grippers. Joe Kinney (the first man to officially close Ironmind’s #4 Gripper) had, I think, a #3 and a #4. He had some other homemade equipment including a grip machine that he worked with, but only 2 grippers. Having several different gripper strengths will allow you to progress faster in my opinion. Just like lifting weight, say you can Squat 445lbs and all the plates you have are 100’s. So you can squat 245, 445, or 645, now 245 will give you a good workout, but unless you are doing high reps, not much else challenging can be done. 445 is your max, and how many times can you go after a max squat in a week? Then, 645 would crush you like a can under a car, so it is useless. You need a variety of plate poundage. Having a Trainer, #1, #2and #3 is a standard I think, having a Super Master, a couple of Elites, maybe a Super Elite, and a #4 and you have everything you need. Again, you certainly do not have to have this set-up, but it is nice. (Note: Super Master, Elite, and Super Elite can be purchased from Wade Gillingham at

Read the rest of this article here


Now that we have video analysis software I'm debating changing our gym name to "The St. Cloud Institute for Human Performance" since we will be conducting research. Post thoughts to the blog.

Shoulder Press

4 Rounds

20 Swings

5 Pull Ups

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Deadlift Technique

Even with a rock on his shoulder, Joel still finds time to smile for the camera.

PNF Hamstring


M/E Deadlift

4x80m Prowler Sprints

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Push Up

Push ups are a great form of exercise for several reasons. First, a push up is something that anyone can do whether or not they have money to spend on fitness equipment. Second, they do not require any extra skills, making them a possible form of exercise/weight training for anyone. Third, the results of consistent push ups are visible after a relatively short period of time. Aside from these obvious benefits of push ups, there a number of non-obvious reasons you should consider adding them to your routine.

  1. Full Body Workout

    • Many people don't realize just how many parts of the body a push up affects. But, when you break down the physics of a push up, you get a better picture of how beneficial they are for your entire body. For example, push ups work your fingers and hands, biceps, triceps, shoulders and forearms, upper and lower back and even your abdominal muscles. In addition, they strengthen your leg muscles, including your hamstrings, quads and calves.

Read more: What Are the Benefits of Push Ups? |


Driving out of the Overhead Squat

185 2x2


Death By Push Ups

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Dennis Rogers At The Arnold

Power Snatch 2x2

Sled Drag with Farmer's Carry

Sunday, March 13, 2011


"Few things are graven in stone, except that you have to squat or you're a pussy." - Mark Rippetoe

Wall Squats

Kettlebell Jump Squats

M/E Squats

Litvinov Sprints
8 Power Cleans
Sprint 400m

Thursday, March 10, 2011

"The Goal Is To Keep The Goal The Goal"

PNF Hamstring Stretch



Tabata Front Squats

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

2 Hour Marathon

Knee Jumps

Box Squats

3 Rounds
20 Push Ups
25 Kettlebell Swings

Sunday, March 6, 2011

1180 Pound Worlds Record Squat

40 kilo (88 pound) Stacked Press


Single Leg Deadlift

M/E Clean

Mile Airdyne

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Law of Supercompensation

Goblet Squats

Med Ball Passes

Waiter's Carry

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

5 Reasons That Squats Hurt Your Back

Try finding a Squatter who has never experienced lower back pain at least once during his Squatting career. There was a time where I had to stop doing Squatscompletely for several months because I couldn’t do them painlessly anymore – too much sitting was my culprit. Maybe that sounds familiar to you.

Fast forward today and I’m not only 100% free of lower back pain, I also Squat400lb raw at 165lb bw. From my personal and coaching experience, here are 5 reasons why Squats might kill your lower back, and what to do about it.

Read the rest of this article here

Box Jumps


Kettlebell Clean Breathing Ladder

Monday, February 28, 2011


We have an Airdyne on layaway

Deep Squat

Shoulder Press

Suitcase Carry

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Dave Whitley At the AOBS Dinner

Depth Jump

Koji Safety Bar Box Squat

Car Push

Monday, February 21, 2011

Updated Pictures




Side Lunges, Single Leg Deadlifts

M/E Clean and Jerk

100 Kettlebell Swings

Friday, February 18, 2011

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Rotator

Deep Squat

Illinois Agility Test

4x80m Prowler Sprints

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Slim "The Hammer Man"

Slim "The Hammer Man" offered a prize of $10,000 if anyone could imitate his style using his hammers weighing in at 30.25 pounds.

Deficit Deadlifts
8x3 @ 70%

3 Rounds
10 Kettlebell Cleans
25 Double Unders

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Eggs Are Good for More Than Silly Cliches


People like to use eggs in words like eggscellent, eggxactly and eggstatic.

Poor eggs. I recommend using them in your meals instead – and think beyond breakfast on occasion. Eggs are slowly regaining favor after their Humpty-Dumpty fall during the whole cholesterol paranoia of the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

We know that they contain valuable protein, vitamins and minerals: stress-busting selenium, antioxidant E, and eye-healthy lutein among them.

Because I am an egghead (sorry), I’m proud to bring you the latest findings from a study Mark pointed out to the Bees in the Journal of Nutrition. In a study that was randomized (good), controlled (great), and cross-sectional (nice), scientists found that a daily egg gave people’s eyes a boost with lutein and zeaxanthin (an antioxidant from the carotenoid family) and didn’t raise their serum cholesterol. Not that we worry too much about cholesterol anyway. That’s right – we don’t lose sleep over cholesterol! Just one of the many MDA ongoing health debates you might want to check out in the forum.

Taken from here at Mark's Daily Apple

48" of 1/4"x6" Cold Rolled Steel

Thoracic Rotations

M/E Front Squat

5 Minute Snatch Test

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Gray Cook Teaches The TGU

Reaction Ball

40 yd Parachute Sprints

30 Minute Deadlift Challenge

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Defying Gravity

Safety Bar Box Squat

Reverse Hyper 2x10

Slosh Pipe

Conditioning Rope

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

2 Hand Anyhow

4x10 Double Kettlebell Cleans

5 Rounds
3 Front Squats
20 Swings

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Notice The Difference?

Pull Ups

Barbell Complex
Front Squat
Back Squat
Good Morning

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Unhappy People

Arm Bars

5-10-5 Test

4 Rounds
Run 400m
Waiter's Carry

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Finger Tip Push Ups

Jumping Pistols

Zercher Squats

4 Rounds
12 Hindu Push Ups
10 Kettlebell Snatches

Monday, January 24, 2011

A Tribute Week To Jack Lalanne

In memory of Jack Lalanne we will be playing clips of him in his prime all week.

50 pound 2 Hands Anyhow

Dips 3x3

3 Rounds
1 Atlas Stone
5 Kettlebell Front Squats

Sunday, January 23, 2011

RIP Jack Lalanne

Hip Mobility

Slosh Pipe

Two Hands Anyhow

80m Prowler Push

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bent Press Instructions

Sled Back Pedal/Side Hops

4 Rounds
20 Kettlebell Swings
10 Kettlebell Push Jerks

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Reverse Bending Instructions


M/E Koji Bench Press: 165+ 32kilos

Box Jumps

Turkish Get Ups

8 Overhead Squats
Sprint 400m

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Dr. Siff Discusses The Olympic Press

Mel Siff:

same amount and usually about 20kg more, so that many big pressers could
defeat a lifter who had a good snatch, but a weak jerk.>

A member wrote:


Obviously if your press is larger, so is your jerk. But superior technique is
a must for a big jerk. My current 1RM press is 65 kilos and my 1RM jerk is
75. Obviously technique has a lot to do with it. I have a relatively strong
press considering my experience in weightlifting but as you can see, the jerk
is a lot about technique and agility in the legs. As an example is a lifter
in the gym where I train who has a 80 kilo press for 2-3 reps and has a max
jerk of 135 kilos. His massive load in the jerk comes from technique.>>

Read the rest here

Timing with the jump rope is vital. Notice the difference in the two pictures



Powermetric Pull Ups

M/E Koji Bench Press

Windmills/Arm Bars

3 Rounds
3 Power Cleans (Men use 185/Women use 123)
10 Palms Up Presses

Friday, January 14, 2011

Strenght Compilation



Knee Jumps

Box Front Squat

Pistols 2x2

Deadlift (Men use 275/Women use 185)
Weighted Pull Up

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Kendrik Farris Power Jerks

True Back

Box Drill

2 Split Jerks (Men use 155/Women use 103)
Suitcase Carry
10 Kettlebell Cleans

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Jack Lalanne

Joel, 25 unbroken deadlifts at 225

Michelle, 20 unbroken bench presses at 95

Sled Drag

Hang Power Snatch 8x2@ 60%

4 Rounds
10 Clapping Push Ups
5 Double Kettlebell Snatches

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dave Tate Q & A

Maximum Repetitions at 225

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

17 Ways to Improve Your Sleep

Like last week’s stress post, I’m not going to delve deeply into why sleep is so important. I’ve done it before, and doing so again would simply take up valuable space that’s better used for action items – for actual sleep hacks that you can put into effect immediately. Just rest assured that it’s crucial to health, longevity, immunity, recovery from training, cognition, aptitude while operating vehicles and/or machinery, insulin sensitivity and, well, do I need to go on? If you want to enjoy your limited time on the planet, you better get your Zs.

Despite the long list of health benefits, sleep is one of those things that people skimp on, whether by necessity (work, traffic, kids, busy schedules) or because they figure they can simply “power through it”. The supposed ability to lower our sleep requirements through sheer will is pervasive. “Tough it out” is a popular slogan, as are “Sleep is for the weak” or “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” Then there’s Virgil’s “Death’s brother, Sleep” (or, alternately, Nas’ “Sleep is the cousin of death” – thanks, Worker Bee). What we end up with, then, is a nation of overworked, overly fatigued men, women, students, and even children shambling through days dotted with Starbucks Ventis and ridiculous energy drinks. If you count yourself among their numbers, or perhaps you just want better sleep, read on for some tips and tricks:

Read the rest of this article here

One demonstration of strength: Picking an object up off of the ground.

Front Raise Snatches


Bench Press 6x2 @ 50%

4 Rounds
25 Swings
10 Push Ups

6 Week Bench Press Cure

T-Spine work

245 pounds

Turkish Get Ups

High Bridges

Squat Clean 3x2 at 70@

Waiter Carries

Monday, January 3, 2011

Deload Week

We will be deloading again this week as an active recovery method as well as to re-learn techniques.

Mark Rippetoe's website is an excellent resource for lifting that deserves some time researching.

Wall Squats, Goblet Squats, T-Spine work

Dead Stop Squats @ 80%

Sled Pulls