MANY years ago I took a trip to the prison where the movie Lock Up was filmed with Sly Stallone. I wanted to learn how the inmates trained. I had seen a documentary on how inmates are working out every day and a friend of mine introduced me to her Dad who was an LT in the prison.
I wound up taking a long trip behind those walls and spent hours talking training with some of the guys. I look back and can't believe I did such a thing. On the flip side, my passion for training has always been through the roof.
I'd say your current day "Fitness Guru" isn't go inside a prison to learn training methods to share with you.
I'll go in depth with what I learned with a video inside The Underground Strength Academy. For now, I will break down some of my thoughts and how you can learn from this prison strength training.
It's VERY interesting to see how inmates can look the way they do and, as seen in the video below, how they can demonstrate the strength they do... Deadlifting 500 lbs and well over. These guys are strong and jacked.
When people say prison is the perfect place to get BIG and Strong, no job, no this, no that, etc. come on, do you really think it's stress free for those guys? Every day they are training for life. Do we need excuses here and a green light to complain how our life is too hard to eat well, train hard and get big and strong? Excuse makers NEVER kick ass and get results.
If you're not strong, point the finger at yourself. Do the work. Eat and sleep as you NEED to, not just how you WANT to. Getting strong begins in the mind. Never forget that. If deep down you don't like doing the work, forget it, you'll never get strong.
These inmates focus on a select few things you can learn from:
- Free Weights and the Basic Powerlifting and Bodybuilding movements.
Just like the days of the Golden Era, free weights WIN every time.
They pack on the most size and strength and deliver results the fastest. Pretty boy bodybuilding is OUT. Squats, Deads, Benching and heavy curls.
- Bodyweight Training on a regular basis. High reps for muscular endurance as well as muscular hypertrophy. Bodyweight training performed through the day in a 'Grease the Groove' fashion ala Pavel, always performing the exercise when fresh, with solid technique, never training to failure to maximize gains in size and strength while ensuring full recovery.
The guys I interviewed in prison, 1 group of guys did calisthenics every morning before breakfast. Another guy, the biggest guy in the gym, he would do free weights all week, then Saturdays were ALL bodyweight, 100 reps of every bodyweight exercise he could think of. And this guy was HUGE. He looked to be 275-285. Most big guys can't do pull ups.
The strongest guys understand that "Strong is STRONG". Which means, you should be strong with the weights and calisthenics.
- Using ALL training methods to keep the mind strong and to develop confidence & mental toughness.
These guys understand that training is a ritual, a place where they can clear the mind of all problems and focus on something good, take care of their own health, both physical AND mental. It's about taking ownership which translates to a stronger Life.
At The Underground, we train for Mind AND Body. If you only train for appearance, well, that motivation is fleeting. It is superficial. You must train for something deeper and more meaningful than big biceps.
- Use of Odd Objects - Inmates are not cry babies like many of the "Fitness Gurus" telling you that their way is the only way and the best way. These guys train with anything they can lift.
These men are using water filled bags and jugs, lifting their bunk beds, etc. I remember watching a video ages ago with inmates training using the picnic tables that were out in the yard after their weights were removed from the yard.
It inspired me to use the picnic table when training athletes outdoors, using an endless array of exercises. We would perform picnic table circuits with my wrestlers at a school yard; table press, split squats, floor press, jumps on the table, etc
Now, before you begin complaining about the fact that inmates are being given credit, let all that go for 5 seconds.... I am looking at their training, NOT what they did in life.
The complaining and excuse making needs to end. It's plain and simple, don't use my website as a ground for complaining, instead, it's a place to learn, share and become inspired. DO. THE. WORK.
Let's get STRONG. Period.
Live The Code 365,
PS: This is THE place where strength and muscle building are taken to a whole new level, I'm there for you, 24-7-365.
I'll get an in depth video reviewing my time visiting the prison and everything I learned.