Strategy and Strongman
By Terry Rady
Since the Inception of strongman there have been multiple different types of events. Some based on pure brute strength, while others have been based on the overall strength and conditioning of the athlete. With that being said, a lot of athletes will go balls-to-the-wall the entire contest, or at least think they are. This however, isn’t always the best option.
Strategy is everything in strongman; knowing when and where you can exert minimal energy to save it for more important events is key. For instance, at World’s Strongest Man u90k this year I only had to pull 720 in the deadlift to win the event. I could have been a show off and tried pulling something huge, but knowing that 720 would win it I skipped multiple weights and only had to end up pulling 3 lifts total. Deadlift is a very physically taxing event, so exerting minimal energy on such a big stage was key to maintaining good energy levels throughout the entire contest.
This led to me going last on the second event which was The Keg sandbag medley. After watching everyone’s runs and keeping time I knew about the energy level I needed to exert to place top 5. The third event was the press medley-one of my favorite events. After watching a lot of people struggle with the inch dumbbell and only a few getting the axle and one person getting the log. I knew if I just hit the first three implements fast enough I would secure at least a top-three finish in the event. I ended up passing out on the log because I rushed it, but I did secure a top-two finish in the event.
After each event I would also sit down put my headphones in with calming music and focus on the next event; rather than standing up walking around socializing and trying to scream at the other competitors to be a “good sport”. Yes, it’s awesome to support your fellow competitors, but remember you’re going to that contest to win. Standing up pacing back and forth, screaming and jumping for your fellow competitor’s only wastes energy. Save the camaraderie for the end when you’re holding the trophy.
I won’t go through the whole contest overall, but as you can see strategy is key when planning out how to properly maintain energy levels in a contest. Yes everyone wishes that they could go one hundred percent in every event, but giving everything you’ve got on the first three events can spell disaster for the 5th event which is often the deal-breaker (i.e stones). With proper guidance on nutrition during your refeed and contest day, you can maintain huge energy levels throughout the entire contest.
In conclusion it is imperative to remember that this isn’t powerlifting, in which you have to do 9 Max lifts in a day, with a longer rest in between. This is strongman; one could be a Max lift, and the next one could be a 300-pound husafell carry for distance. Energy is everything in this sport and conservation thereof helps tremendously.
Terry Rady is the current Worlds Strongest Man U90kg best lifts include a 330lb log press and 700+ deadlift along with stunningly good posture and enjoys creating imaginary pizza on the pizza hut app that he will never eat.
For help with proper programming and diet contact : Terryrady1@gmail.com
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