Posts Tagged ‘power’


I teach four classes a week at the gym that I work at and no one ever ends up disappointed when I use the kettlebell swing to give them a challenging workout. Sometimes the move is at the end of the class as a finisher. Other times it is placed during the class as a strength move or as a part of a complex and so-on.



This week’s workout is based solely on the kettlebell swing and will challenge during, then make you feel successful as on who has overcome the adversity of training.

Watch the video below to learn how to do it, (it is under two minutes) then get to it!






The guidelines are:


  1. Safety first- Always value proper form and movement above all. Do as many Quality reps as possible.
  2. Breathe– As always match up your breathing to your movements (In on the bottom of the swing and out on top).
Also as a gift to you; I want to share with you my free videos series on how to do the kettlebell swing properly for strength and conditioning,  Click here for it.


I am a huge lover of living heavy weights at various times throughout the year of my training and as I write this, I am right now in an awesome cycle that I felt compelled to share with you my friends. This program has done wonders for my strength, weight and overall mood. It is a Westside barbell on conjugate method based program, which could do the same for you as well, if you choose to follow it. However, if you do choose to- you should have at least a year of heavy lifting under your belt and know how to do the different exercises safely with very heavy weights .(80 to 90% of your one rep max.) So buckle up we are going for bumpy ride much like Ace Ventura’s short cut in When Nature Calls.





Now, if you have never read anything or heard about a West Side style program it is two days of max effort days of upper and lower splits. It also calls for two sessions of dynamic or explosive days as well. My two heavy days consisted of 5 exercises, two being my big three on my lower body day and the other the holy grail of strength (da’ bench) on my upper days. The rest were accessories based on the power lifts and then it got more specifically geared towards my weaknesses that I saw in my training the program unraveled.

I sat down ahead of time and decided what numbers I wanted to reasonably attain form my 8 week program. Afterwards I decided which exercises to use in my periodization. This type of program uses a lot of the same but different concept to avoid maladaptation and CNS burnout while getting stronger.

After all of that I found my loads that I would use, picked my rep range and put my program together as a chief makes a stew and came out with my lose 5 pounds and get stronger program.


This program involves lifting four days a week. I also did conditioning on my off days. I was able to incorporate, tempo runs, boxing, towers and incline walks on my non strength days and on one of assistance exercise days. This allowed me a total of 5 to 6 workouts a week throughout this cycle.

This program if you are familiar with the west side technique has tow max effort days, switches the exercises frequently to avoid maladaptation and requires that lift 80 to 90% on these days.

It also has two dynamic effort days wherein you are doing fast and or explosive exercises to help you overcome any stocking points on your max lifts.

Now the break of each workout had your main two to three heavy lifts and then two to three accessory exercise in each session. I found that I had greater success with these as well if I also changed my exercise pretty frequently as well.

My plan was as follows and it worked well:

Day one:
This was usually Monday and was a tempo run. I ran at 70% effort for 10 to 12 seconds lasting anywhere form 15 to 20 minutes and I also did correctives and a lot of mobility work. ( I have to use my time wisely.)

Day 2: Max effort upper:
I choose to do upper first because it wouldn’t flatten me as much as lower body would. The first week was board presses, I did this because how grumpy my shoulders could be and I also wanted to go a bit heavier that was for 3 sets of 3. This movement was in the program for three weeks.Then I switched it to dumbbell bench and made incredible progress in my strength. This rep and set sequence was 2 x 3 sets with a 3 to 5 minute rest. After 2 weeks< I switched to floor presses and so-on. All of these sets require 3 to 5 minutes rest due to the heavy nature of the lifts.



For my upper pulls there were: Week 1: Weighted pull-ups: 3×3,
Week 3-5: Weighted chin-ups with heavier weight for 2×3
Weeks 5-7: heavy lat pull downs 3×3
Weeks: 7-8: Heavy pull-ups 2×3.

Once again rest three to five minutes between sets and go heavy!

Overhead press work:
Weeks 1-3:
Bottom’s up kettlebell presses: This drill helps me with my bench grip,wrist position and shoulder mechanics.
2×5 with three minutes rest in between sets



Weeks 3-5: Fist push ups. This drill offers a lot of the benefits of the B.U.P, but it is also an anti-spinal extension drill as well. 2×5 2 minutes rest in between sets, although sometimes, I only did one.

Weeks6-8 : Heavy half kneeling presses. The goal here was strength without going to my full max. 2×2 3 to 5 minutes rest each set.

Tricep work: The goal here is to help with the bench press. Sometimes smaller muscles can limit a move , so get them stronger too.

Weeks 1-3: Dumbbell nose breakers. This move strengthens the elbow extensors and helps stabilize the shoulders. (These qualities are important for the bench. ) 3×6 medium weight, 2 minutes rest each set.

Weeks 3-5 Heavy (weighted) dips: 3 reps 2 sets 3 minutes rest in between. If you have bad shoulders, use the band. See the video below to learn more.

Weeks 5-8: Triceps push downs (rope or handle) It s a well known and documented fact that, different hand positions emphasize different muscle fibers and portions of a group . The approach takes advantage of this fact and makes you better and stronger as a result. 2×6 , one to two minutes rest in between.

Midback work: This is often a neglected area. But is important for shoulder health and for the success of your main lifts.

Weeks 1-3:
Bench supported rows: This variation will allow you to use more weight to train with. 3 x 8 2 minutes rest each set. I also supersetted these my my French press to increase metabolic stress and to save time.

Weeks 3-5: Seated Dumbbell shrugs. 2×12, 1 minute rest

Weeks 6-8 Dumbbell reverse flies. 2x 5 pretty heavy. Rest 2 minutes in between
For an strength, I alternated between hands sit ups, an wheel roll outs and hanging leg raises.
2 x 5 2 minute rest.

Day 3: Max effort lower:
This is by far my favorite day, this really test my determination and toughness for about to 2 or more days later due to the soreness etc. Plus this program made my quads blow up!


Weeks 1-3: Heavy box squats 3×3 to 12 inch box. 3 to 5 minutes rest

Weeks4-6: Barbell front squats: 3,2,2 3 to 5 minutes rest

Weeks: 6-8: High bar back squat: 2,2,2 3 to 5 minutes rest

Weeks 1-3: Sumo deadlifts: 3×3 3 to 5 minutes rest

Weeks 4-6: Narrow stance deadlifts 3×2 (this variation is very challenging for me. ) 3 to 5 minutes rest.

Weeks 6-8: Jefferson deadlifts 3×1 per side. 3 to 5 minute rest.

As before, try to choose accessory work that helps your weaknesses as a lifter. But here is what I did, if you want to copy it until a few weeks in and until you know where you are weak, go ahead and train it.

Weeks 1-3: Pistols 2×5 You may use a counter balance such as a weight plate or kettlebell 3 minutes rest, but if you are super wiped, rest up to 5 minutes between sets.

Assisted bodyweight leg curl , 2 x 5 2 minutes rest.

Outside the leg kettlebell cleans 2 x 8, 1 to 1 1\2 minute rest.

Weeks 4 -6:
Air lunge 2 x 5 2 minutes rest
Trx bodyweight leg curl 2 x 8 1 minute rest
Outside the leg kettlebell swings ( heavy) 2 x 5

Weeks 6-8:
Single leg deadlifts 2 x 5 half bodyweight plus 50 weighted vest. 2 minute rest
Glute\ham raise : 2 x 12 50 lbs 1 minute rest
Slider eccentric leg curl ( just lower down) 2 x 12 , 45 second rest

That is it for my heavy days, next are the dynamic effort days. The goal of these two sessions is be able to accelerate weight through a sticking point.

Before I did these days, I took a rest day due to doing two heavy days back to back. I did however, do boxing drills on this day. So it was an active rest. You can do something like this, but don’t kill yourself and mess up your strength days. Remember this is the lose 5 lbs and get stronger program!

Day 3: Dynamic effort day 1:
Weeks 1-3:
Physio ball cable bench press 2 x 12, 1 minute rest.

Fast pull-ups: (This does not mean jerky, but disciplined pull-ups quickly done ) 2x 8, 2 minute rest

Push-press: 2x 12 one dumbbell about 50% one rep max, one minute rest.

Medicine ball scoop toss: 2 x 12 ,30 seconds rest medium size ball.

Tricep over head toss: use a medium to heavy medicine ball 10 x 2, 1 minute rest.

Weeks 4-6:
Supine med. Ball pass, 2x 12, 1 minute rest (all reps must be fast)

Med. Ball slam, 2x 12 (fast and hard reps only) 1 minute rest

Sand bag push press: 2 x 10 ,1 minute rest

Weeks 6-8:
Clap push-ups, 2 x 10 , 1 minute rest.

Lateral med. ball slam 6 x 2 , 1 minute rest

Med. Ball push-press 10x 2, 30 seconds rest.

Dynamic plank: 15 x 2 , 30 seconds rest

Day 4, dynamic effort day 2 lower body:

Weeks 1-3:

Quick high bar back squat 30% one rep max 8 x 2, 1 minute rest.

Band resisted dead lifts. 2 x 10, 1 minute rest .

Single leg jumps 10 x 2, 1 minute rest

Skater jumps ( paused landing) 6 x 2, 2 minutes rest

Weeks 4-6:

Pause low bar speed squats 2 x 10 50% 1 rep max, 1 minute rest

Heavy kettlebell dead swings: 2 x 10, 1 minute rest.

Counter movement jumps : 2 x 8 , 30 seconds rest.

Skaters (quick) 2 x 6, 1 minute rest

Weeks 6-8:

Speed box squats: 2 x 10 , 40% 1 rep max, 1 minute rest

Speed sumo dead lifts: 2 x 8 , 50% 1 rep max, 1 minute rest

Broad jumps 2 x 12 , 1 minute rest

Lateral jumps over box : 2 x 6, 1 minute rest




This program was pretty grueling, but not unreasonable. The results were also awesome, I achieved my squat and bench press goals pretty easily as a result of this program. It also allowed me to identify and work on some things that needed help in my lifts.

So, if you enjoy lifting heavy and have been stuck on some lifts, I recommend this program to you. You will not be disappointed with its results as you put it to work!