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EP 100 – ASM recap w/James Deffinbaugh and Laura Anderson

This episode we go over an indepth article on periodization for powerlifters by Dr. Mike Israetel which can be found at the Juggernaut Training Systems website here.

We cannot say enough great things about this guide. Dave learned the difference between micro, meso, and macrocycles. Everett and Janine debate over phase potentiation and Janine reads excerpts from her copy of Periodization Training for Sports by Bompa and Carrera.

There are a number of helpful visuals you won’t get in the podcast so please do check the link out above. Enjoy the show!

EP 99 – Visible and Invisible Church

EPISODE 100! We are delighted to have James Deffinbaugh and Laura Anderson to give us a recap on how the ASM 105kg and Strongest Woman in the World events went. 

Day 1

Log Clean and Press for reps – 60 secs

WT Men 105k – 325

Fatback Farmers – 60 sec., Athlete will carry farmers walk implements 30 feet perform and 4 Deadlift reps with the farmers implements, then carry 30 more feet to finish line and perform 4 more Deadlift reps for time. Athlete will be given a down call on deadlift.

105k – 340


Keg Over Bar 60 secs

WT Men 105k – 320


Arm over Arm Pull



Axle Deadlift for reps

WT Men 105k – 675


For James tiebreaker – one-arm farmer’s handle hold for max time AT 300lbs


Questions for Laura – the log press and farmers (? she got 2nd on farmer’s) were the two that kept you from gold. How close were you to getting more points on both events (1 rep for log press, 1 second faster on farmers)?


Questions for James – how heavy was the arm over arm, how heavy do you usually train at the gym? Sean Demarinis tore his quad on the farmers. How big of an upset was that?

EP 98 – Weekly Gainz Strategies

Today’s episode we discussed the visible and the invisible church…and no this has nothing to do with H.G. Wells.

Some of the discussion points that were covered included:

Understanding the Visible/Invisible church distinction

  • In Scripture
  • In History
  • As regards the Reformation

Errors when it comes to this distinction

  • The invisible church IS the visible church
  • The visible church IS the invisible church
  • The visible and invisible are two different churches

How do we account for churches that are not faithful?

  • Impure vs pure
  • How impure before it is no church at all?

Here’s the question for debate – What does the modern visible church today look like and how close is that to what it should look like? What things would be different?

What is the role of the local church?

What is the social gospel?

What is the invisible church? How does that differ from the visible church?

Westminster Standards. Chapter 25, “Of the Church,” states: “The catholic or universal church, which is invisible, consists of the whole number of the elect, that have been, are, or shall be gathered into one, under Christ the Head thereof; and is the spouse, the body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all. The visible church, which is also catholic or universal under the gospel (not confined to one nation, as before under the law), consists of all those throughout the world that profess the true religion; and of their children: and is the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ, the house and family of God, out of which there is no ordinary possibility of salvation” (sections 1, 2).

EP 97 – Ethan McElroy

This week we discuss an article from Greg Nuckols website, Stronger By Science


This article was originally penned by Dr Mike Zourdos who has an extensive impressive history in powerlifting as well as a long list of educational credentials. 

When it comes to load progression, many of us have done a few of these strategies without even being aware of it. Some of the ways to progress in load I’ve heard go as follows:

If work is below an 8 RPE, progress up by 2.5% for that week and see how next week feels, repeat until at 8 RPE…new cycle of training changes things up on a monthly basis so you shouldn’t hit an 8 RPE until near week 4 of each training cycle. This was presented by kizentraining, as well as by Jake Noel.

Another progression strategy I’ve seen is more linear – follow plan and at week 3 do an amrap for squat and bench and based on number of reps your working 1rm will go up and your linear percentages will change with that new number. DL changes based on speed of bar that is tracked by coach or can be tracked personally,.


From the article:

Surely, we all look to continuously increase the load we are lifting, but how are we supposed to do this? What strategies can you use to dictate load progression?  How much should you increase load each week? Are different progression strategies appropriate for experienced and novice lifters?


There are 3 strategies for load progression: These strategies are:


  • An arbitrary progression
  • Autoregulatory Progressive Resistance Exercise
  • Rating of perceived exertion (RPE) progression


Arbitrary progression – Great for novice or intermediate lifters as the progression tends to add weight quickly. However, just because you can add 10kg, doesn’t mean that you should.


When a novice individual increases load too fast, this causes a constant increase in volume, and in the short-term, moderate volumes may be preferable for both strength (2, 3) and hypertrophy (3) to high volumes. Therefore, I see no reason for a novice individual to adapt to a higher training volume early on, especially if there is no guarantee that extra benefit will occur. Further, it is likely that a novice individual is still making great strides to improve their technique on multi-joint lifts (i.e. squat, bench press, deadlift, etc.), thus rapid load progressions could increase injury risk when technical mastery is not yet achieved. Therefore, in novice to intermediate lifters, it may be a successful strategy to prescribe an excellent load with a simple 2.5kg progression increase.


Final Word: An arbitrary progression from week to week cannot be used universally since rate of strength adaptation is individual; however, it could keep novices from progressing too much too soon by stipulating they stick to a simple 2.5kg weekly load increase.


Autoregulatory Progressive Resistance Exercise (APRE) – This is what I’m currently using with this training block.

  1. Pros – as long as you are using a % increase of load this is a good model as it is based on how many reps you can achieve based on last week’s (month’s) numbers (which are based on the previous week/month).
  2. Cons – that AMRAP might be over what you can usually do due to excitability and you knock out 10 reps when you usually could only knock out 8, which can lead to progressing in too much load and missing reps down the road.


Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) – RPE 10 – no more in the tank, 9 – 1 rep, 8 – 2 reps…you can utilize RPE for load progression (lower RPE = more reps x sets). This can be done looking at last training session or looking at an average RPE based across all sets.

  • Pros – it doesn’t get much more individualized than RPE.
  • Cons – is the RPE accurate? How long does it take for a lifter to know for sure? Noobs might think they are at a 7 RPE when they are much closer to a 9.

Final Word: Load progression with RPE has distinct advantages in that it individualizes progression not only for the lifter but also across different days of the week (if different repetition zones are used within a week); however, this strategy is predicated on the lifter providing accurate RPE values.

EP 96 – Discipleship w/Tom Dugan

We are joined by Ethan McElroy, Raleigh area coach for powerlifting and general fitness. Ethan’s specialty is strength training for general population and coaching others in strength and power sports. He has competed and coached in powerlifting and football. Ethan has also participated in one strongman, 2 highland games and threw shotput and discus for 7 years. Ethan will be competing in a meet coming up in November as well as a strongman event in spring and the State one in May.

Ethan’s coaching site can be found here, and he is on Instragram here.


How did you get into Powerlifting? What got you into strength sports? Where did your lifting journey start? I got into powerlifting in my final year of college. I had spent the previous year focusing on losing weight and been lifting weights for a year following basic linear progression and workouts. I was getting tired of not lifting for strength and wanted something to fill my competitive itch. A friend and fellow personal trainer suggested I check out Port City Sports Performance where he was interning. I went there and met with one of the owners who is a powerlifter, got started training there and was hooked!


Talk about experience in powerlifting: I have been training for powerlifting since March 2015 and competing since November 2015. I have loved every minute of it. I think it is a great sport as it lets me do what I love most interact and help people and move heavy objects.


How many meets have you done? I have competed in 4 meets with my 5th one coming up in November.  I have coached in 4 meets.

Different meets and stories there: At my first meet the whole crowd cheered as I tried to pull 478 on my third attempt. I missed it but it was an awesome feeling. It was really cool competing at Nationals last year. I saw a lot of great lifts. I saw Ray Williams sitting in the warm up room a couple hours before he squated 1000lbs.


Different programs and experience writing/following programs: I have used conjugate, wendlers 5/3/1, starting strength, linear progression, big Texas method, Travis mash, smolov jr and more for myself and my athletes.


Fitness culture – good, bad, ugly: I like that more people are starting to weight lift now and I feel slowly people are starting to realize there aren’t instant fixes.


Any strongman stories you have? What meets have you competed in strongman? I have competed in NC Strongest Man and Woman in May 2017. I was a lot of fun definitely harder than a powerlifting meet. A lot more to worry about and learn. I plan on doing NC Strongest Man and Woman 2018 and possibly another one in the Spring of 2018. I have also competed in 2 highland games and hope to compete again just not sure when.


Biggest strength numbers: Competition- Squat 385 Bench 291.5 Deadlift 511.5,Gym Squat 390 Bench 300/315 Deadlift 515   Frame Deadlift 600, Atlas Stones 200, 225,255.


Any injuries that you had to deal with? Elbow tendonitis, knee pain, iliolumbar sprain, sprained toe, constant tightness in right trap and shoulder blade from throwing and sleeping position.


What do you take on a regular basis to supplement your training? How many calories do you eat off and on season? How can you afford to eat that much? Multi vitamin, vitamin d, magnesium, fish oil, bcaas. While cutting my calories have been 2,500 to 2,100 and on my current reverse they are 2,800. A nice caring wife who tries to understand why the fridge is empty two days after grocery shopping.


Favorite training music? Metal, viking metal, alternative rock

EP 95 – Conseling and the Christian Walk

This episode happened last minute, but as usual Everett takes us to the deep end of the pool. We talk counseling and the pastoral role of counseling. Inevitably we discuss some of the stigmas of always having on your Sunday best which can imply that the church isn’t a place for people to share their struggles and problems. This is probably one of Dave’s fav episodes…check it out!

EP 93 – Meet Day and Everything Went Wrong

Dr. Rori Alter is an accomplished powerlifter and physical therapist. Some of her achievements in powerlifting include:

  • Arnold Classic Sling-Shot Pro American 2017 – 1st place 72 kg Women Open
  • USA Powerlifting Raw National Championship 2016: 4th place 72kg Women Open
  • USA Powerlifting Raw National Championship 2015: 4th place 72kg Women Open
  • 2015 USA Powerlifting Raw Open Rankings:7th place 63kg Class and 7th place 72kg Class
  • USA Powerlifting Pro Raw Challenge at The 2015 Arnold Classic: 3rd place 72kg Women Open
  • USA Powerlifting American Open 2014:1st place 75kg Women Open
  • USA Powerlifting Raw National Championship 2014: 5th place 72kg Women Open

From her website Progressive Rehab & Strength, Rori is a Full Body Certified Active Release Techniques Practitioner, a Starting Strength Certified Coach and a sought-after Physical Therapist and Coach within the powerlifting community.

Rori holds a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from New York Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science in Health Science from Boston University. At Boston University, she specialized in Human Physiology, a topic that has fascinated her since she was a young dancer training in New York City.Rori transitioned from the performing arts to racing triathlons in her early 20s. She not only competed, but also started the Boston University Triathlon team and competed on the regional and national collegiate level during her undergraduate and graduate careers.

Some of the topics we discussed included:

  • What got you interested in PL? What got you interested in working with hurt athletes?
  • What different modalities of care do you provide?
  • How did Progressive Rehab and Strength get started?
  • Who are some of the big names you’ve helped rehab? How did they find you?
  • The medical community within powerlifting – how do we build it up so that powerlifters have more services/doctors they can choose from and become better educated on how to take care of themselves? What are some things that you would suggest that could be done to connect PTs and others to the PL community?
  • Lower back injuries tend to be most common among powerlifters – why is this? What could be done to minimize potential back issues?
  • There is some debate on the usefulness of foam rolling – useful or no?
  • Same with static stretching – useful or no?
  • What is the biggest single thing an athlete can do to improve his longevity in the sport of powerlifting?
  • What frustrates you the most about the PL community and what can be done to improve that?
  • Between active and passive therapy, which do you think is the more effective?

EP 91 – Strongman and Apologetics with Laura Anderson

Cheri Rushing is a powerlifter, wife/homeschool mom, and co-founder of the Facebook group Belle of the Bar. We talked about a bunch of crazy stuff like fitness and modesty culture…it gets real and crazy. Some of the topics included:

  • How did you get into Powerlifting?
  • Talk about experience in powerlifting
  • How many meets have you done?
  • Different meets and stories there
  • Different programs and experience writing/following programs
  • Fitness culture – good, bad, ugly
  • Why weren’t you taken seriously by mainstream strength facebook groups?
  • Modesty and sanctification…what is good and bad about the purity culture?