Bracing--turn your core into steel reinforced concrete.


                The art of turning your core muscles into steel reinforced concrete


It’s essential for heavy lifting.  Yes, that is a relative term, but I can’t think of one lifter in the gym who, upon discovering how to breathe for a lift didn’t beat a personal record. 

In a few simple steps, let’s do the same for your max effort lifts—beat them.

Think about your trunk.  This is all of the muscles of your core and you need to make them stiff so you don’t collapse while under the load of the barbell.


Public Domain,


Place your hands just above your hip bones, and tighten as if you are about to be punched.  You should see your hands move apart, just slightly.  This is NOT the “drawing in of the belly button to the spine.”   It’s creating a shield and your abdominal muscles may poke out a bit.

                Let’s get your diaphragm involved.

Take a breath and say, “HA!”  This should activate not only your diagpragm but also your internal and external obliques.

                Lastly, squeeze. 

This is the part I often don’t hear discussed much.  Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles.  Having pushed out 5 babies, this is an important part of my bracing sequence.  Squeeze it like you’ve got another 20 miles to go before the next rest stop!!   Not sure about how to work these muscles?  Stop and start midstream. You know what I mean. 

Hey—peeing on the platform is perfectly acceptable. 

But you might want to avoid is as best you can.


As for using a belt,  I think it’s a great tool.  But only AFTER you have properly learned how to brace without it.  We don’t want you just pushing your belly out into the belt without proper stability.

Prepare for the punch, say HA, squeeze.


Now you may lift.


Easton Gym Personal Training CrossFit Workouts 20170424


Strength:  Back Squats
4x6 Tempo Back Squats (4221) Every 3 Min
4 = 4 second descent
2 = 2 second pause at bottom
2 = 2 second ascent
1 = 1 second pause at top
First set ~ 55% of 1RM, work up as tolerated.

Metabolic Conditioning:
13 Min AMRAP: 
Sled Push (180/120, 50 feet) 
10 Dumbbell Snatch (70/50) 
Sled Push (180/120, 50 feet) 


Strength: KB clean and press ladders
(1-2-3-4-5)x5  Keep increasing either reps (climb higher in the ladder than last week) or increase weight

Met Con:
10 double kettlebell step ups (35/55)
40ft double front rack carry
15 GHD sit ups
Strength:  Tempo Front Squats
4x6 Tempo Front Squats (4221) Every 3 Min
4 = 4 second descent
2 = 2 second pause at bottom
2 = 2 second ascent
1 = 1 second pause at top
First set ~ 55% of 1RM,

Olympic Lifting
EMOM (15x1)
1 Snatch pull, 1 Hi hang full snatch

Run 400m x 2,  
Run 200m x 4, 
Run 100mx 8,
Same pace each effort, rest as needed.  May sub rowing or mix as desired
This is about pace.  

E90s:  Split jerk work:  
1 jerk drop with foot movement, bar at eyes
1 jerk drop with feet in place, bar at eyes
1 jerk drop with bar at rack
1 jerk

Met Con:
15 minute AMRAP
200m Run
15 RR
200m Run
10 Dips

Warm up:  2 rounds of 200m Run, 10 each pushups, pull ups, situps, squats

Work for 30 minutes
30s work 30s Rest
Sit up
Box jump
Mountain Climber
Ball slam

Mobility:  1 minute each
Shoulder smash, each side
Couch stretch
Seated star (feet together, knees out)
Iron crosses

3x3 tempo clean deadlifts:  take 10s up and 10s down
50 Clean and jerks
Begin with an empty barbell and build to 80%  1rm, quickly.