Tip: Squat, Carry Heavy Stuff, and Shut Up

Three things every lifter and athlete should be doing. Get the details here.

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1. Do High-Rep Squats

High-rep squats are the mass-builder's secret. Try this:

  • If you weigh 135 pounds or below, use 135 when squatting.
  • 135-185 pounds, use 185.
  • 185-205 pounds, use 205.
  • Over 205 pounds, use 225.

When you squat deep for 50 reps, you'll understand the value of high-rep squats. After you do that, come back in two or three days and repeat it.

2. Carry Heavy Stuff

This generation of lifters is lucky. They've seen the strongman and CrossFit competitions and most of them know about the farmer's walk and the family of loaded carries. Try using a trap bar with the same loads listed in tip number one. Strive for 100 yards or the equivalent.

3. Shut Up About Inconsequential Stuff

Lifting weights is the following: picking weights off the ground, lifting weights overhead, carrying weights for time or distance. We can argue about the fundamental human movements, but if you won't do the three things listed above, shut up.

Yes, deadlifts, overhead presses, and farmer's walks are really that important. And yes, squats and pull-ups are good, but if you can't pull double bodyweight off the ground, press bodyweight overhead, and carry bodyweight for about 100 yards, let's see if we can take care of that first, shall we?

Dan John is an elite-level strength and weightlifting coach. He is also an All-American discus thrower, holds the American record in the Weight Pentathlon, and has competed at the highest levels of Olympic lifting and Highland Games. Follow Dan John on Facebook