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Today went wrong – quick. I went in pumped to throw up some heavier weight, but from the very start it didn’t feel right. I don’t know if it was the lack of sleep, something I ate, the bike ride on Saturday, or all of the above, but today’s numbers were terrible. I tweaked my shoulder during one of the last sets of snatches.

Direction for the 4th Big 24 routine was to get to 10# shy of Monday’s finishing load by the 3rd or 4th round and then finish all the remaining sets at that weight. I could feel the added volume. I hope to finish Monday’s routine 20# above where I finished today’s.

“The Exercise”

1 65
2 75
3 85
4-8 95

Power Clean + Push Press

1 65
2 85
3 105
4-8 115

Squat Clean

1 65
2 85
3 105
4-8 115

Finished off the session with 40 KB snatches @ 16kg

Workouts for the week:

M: Big 24 III + Bench

T: 40 min sub-lactate threshold run – focus on midfoot strike. 30 min stretch and foam roll session. 30 Pullups during the course of the day.

W: Work Capacity “Ohio State“. + DB Bench. Spend 15 minutes stretching after.

R: 40 min sub-lactate threshold run – focus on midfoot strike. 30 min stretch and foam roll session. 20 Pullups during the course of the day.

F: Big 24 IV + Bench

S: Rest

S: Hike or 2+ hour easy road bike ride.

Looks like a big week in the gym, but it won’t really do me much good if I don’t manage to keep the diet in line.

One day off on the strength cycle. Couldn’t get to the gym on Friday so I went Saturday morning. It means I’ll have slightly less rest going into Monday’s Big 24 III, but that should be OK.

Big 24 II numbers (each set = 3 reps):

The Exercise:

1   45
2   55
3   65
4   75
5   80
6   85
7   85
8   90

Power Clean + Push Press:

1   65
2   75
3   85
4   95
5   105
6   105
7   110
8   115

Squat Clean:

1   65
2   85
3   90
4   95
5   100
6   105
7   110
8   115


15   115
8    135
4    145
2    155
2    165
2    175
1    185

I’m adding a Bench Press to the end of my Big 24 workouts since that’s obviously a weakness of mine. I think in future workouts I will use the same 8 sets x 3 rep format as with the compound movements.

All the compound movements went up 5-10 pounds versus the previous Friday.

As I was in the gym I was thinking that the same format would work for the “Operator Ugly” tested lifts: Front Squat, Dead Lift, Bench Press.

Today was supposed to be the first day of the 4-week Big 24 strength cycle. However, I was visiting my parents. I thought we still had a bar and some weights at their place, but I was wrong. Instead, I came up with the following work capacity routine with what I had: a 20 kg kettlebell and 65 lbs sandbag.

For time:

25-20-15-10-5 reps

– Strict Pushups
– 50 yard Sandbag Run
– Kettlebell Swing
– 50 yard Sandbag Run
– Sandbag Front Squats
– 50 yard Sandbag Run

So the first round would look like this:
– 25 Strict Pushups
– 50 yard Sandbag Run
– 25 Kettlebell Swings
– 50 yard Sandbag Run
– 25 Sandbag Front Squats
– 50 yard Sandbag Run

Second Round
– 20 Strict Pushups etc…

Hold the sandbag however you want on the run. There is simply no comfortable way to hold it since the same muscles you use to stabilize the sandbag are also the ones you need to breathe. Same thing goes for the front squat. This makes it a lot harder to recover and by the end of the 20 rep round I was hurting.

The sandbag pretty much forces you to hang on to it in a zercher hold. Bear hug is harder. Throwing it over either shoulder is easier, but then you aren’t really doing a front squat.

I did the workout in 23:55. I was happy to crank it out on a day most people are downing beers and eating chips, though it wasn’t the strength routine I had planned to do.

I started a strength cycle today. It’s a 4 week cycle that I’m going to do in 5 weeks. I’m going to do the first week twice in order to get used to the movements. Big 24 is heavily focused on snatches and overhead squats, two lifts that I haven’t been doing much. This week is helping me lock in the moves and get my body ready for the heavier weight that starts next week.