If you’ve ever talked to anyone that’s been going to the gym for years, even decades, you’ll know that there are people that are strong for the weight room, but there are also people strong enough for anything. A number of people have the “brute strength” necessary to lift big, heavy, clumsy loads without any assistance or leverage, and if you want to find out how strong you really are, try to do what they do – it’s a test of your endurance and strength like no other.
Robert Herbst, a coach, personal trainer and 18-time world’s best power lifter has often been quoted as saying that this brute strength is just untainted, animalistic strength that comes to you without thinking and is available to you at any moment. When your wife calls you because she stuck something under the oven, you go over there and you lift it without a second thought – that kind of strength.
However, while some folks are blessed with it, that still doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t and can’t refine it or reach it. With the right training routine, you can do anything, including this. Brute strength has to be there, but you can’t shut down after just a rep of something – you have to be able to do more. When the mammoths lived alongside the humans, they’d be killed, then hacked to pieces and everyone would carry a piece back to the camp or cave. That’s how we got our brute strength, ancestrally speaking.
Today, you can train it, but you can’t just start with the maximum possible weight and then expect to become and stay strong. Like anything else, you have to start a bit lower, having low weight and high reps, meaning that you should do anywhere from six to twelve reps per exercise so you can get your form down. When you train with maximum weight, your form will reduce in quality so you have to get your form right before you start the heavy workout.
After that, you have to start with around five reps at 65-75% of your maximum potential, and you should train for up to eight sets with a minute of recovery between them so that you can improve your strength endurance. If you keep doing that for a total of six weeks, you will have a very solid base and your form will be good. After that, you are going to get very strong in a relatively short period of time, however to accomplish that you will need to use weights that are close to your maximum, with singles, doubles or even triples. However, you will need to be able to complete all your sets so make sure to rest well for up to 10 minutes between sets and exercises, until you are at least at 90% of your total strength.
There are a few things that you can put into your strength training program if you want to put on some more brute strength and increase your capabilities. Remember, this won’t be a walk in the park – it will actually be quire painful to make your body accommodate the new program that you put it in. If you want to be really strong, you have to stiffen that upper lip and clench your fists – it’s not going to be easy. When you’re done training, you will have to take a while to recuperate – up to two weeks – to get your strength to come into effect. You will be much stronger when you start again. These are the 7 things you can integrate into your program to increase your brute strength.
When you’re doing conventional deadlifts, you’re pushing the limits of your real strength. This happens when you lift as much as possible off the floor. When you lift, you should keep the bar as close to your legs as possible, just so that you don’t change the center of gravity or put extra force on your lower back, leading it to strain. If you know people who have deadlifted for a long time, they’ve probably mentioned that when you’re doing a good deadlift, your shins should be bleeding from the bar dragging across them, this is why you put tape on your legs – so that you won’t bleed up the gym.
When you’re lifting, the instep of your feet should be located directly under the bar with slightly pointed out toes – this ensures correct form. Other things that you need to be careful about are your knees and arms – your knees should be soft and your arms straight – straighten your arms, lean forwards into a half-squat so that you can reach the bar on the floor, while keeping your head up. Brace your abs, pull the slack out of the bar so it doesn’t touch the plates anymore and flex your lats as hard as you can.
To lift, press your feet hard into the floor as you lift the bar along your shins, and slowly pushing your hips forward when the bar is past your knees. When the bar reaches its highest points, clench your glutes and you have yourself a deadlift. Lower it down slowly so it doesn’t bounce, put it down, take a breather and do it again when you feel ready.
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