Flight of the Wind Sock
It’s about 5 am. I’m just getting home from my post work, workout. My training partner and I decided to finish our workout by loading up the prowler with 12 45′s and doing several trips up and down the parking lot. The lot is about 50 yards long and we started by pushing it two parking spaces and switching, then one, then grinding out inches at a time until we just could not move it. As much as I wanted to throw that fucking thing into the scrap yard across the street, I couldn’t be happier. On my drive home I started thinking about the last 2 years of my training life. All of the peaks and valley’s achievements and setbacks. I’ve been lucky to have met some great people through training. People who I’d never have crossed paths with in 100 years had it not been for the simple act of lifting weights.
My journey began in roughly January 2010. Life was good at that time. I was a level 1 Crossfit instructor, completely shredded, busting out muscle-ups for reps, and recently reached my goal of 20 dead hang with a 20lb vest on. I was 180lbs and knee deep in elite fitness.
My job was great. Family was even better. I was living the dream…
I work in a town that has a mixture of literally everything. We have upper class homes, homeless, college students, a large illegal alien population, and government owned projects. All of this intertwined with 37 liquor establishments. The majority of our calls are drugs and alcohol related. What happens when young guys get drunk and all the girls have gone home with StrengthVillain board members? You guessed it, they fight.
I didn’t think anything of it one night when I was called for a fight. I arrived on scene and saw a pretty big dude, most likely a football player at the college, all amped up outside. He had apparently been fighting with bouncers inside. His back was to me so I walked up from behind (earmuffs) and grabbed his shoulder. Naturally he spun around to see who the fuck was grabbing him. In doing this he lifted me off of my feet, turning me into a wind sock. As this was happening several other cops pulled up and were able to handcuff him before anything else happened. In hindsight the guy probably had no ill will towards me but if he had, I was fucked. I was mortified but even more, it scared the shit out of me. How could this happen? I was fucking elite. What about all of the tabata wall balls, double unders and handstand pushups? Good thing was, I wasn’t tired. I was so conditioned that he could have thrown me around all day and I wouldn’t have broken a sweat (earmuffs?). All of my training and experience in defensive tactics was useless if I couldn’t keep myself attached to the fucking planet. Shit had to change. Fast.
I did a stint on Starting Strength and had some success but something was missing. I was caught between counting almonds and chain swallowing milk. I had read some of John’s stuff on the old site and stumbled across his article about resigning from crossfit and realized that what I needed was at Greyskull.
I met with John in May of 2010. We squared away my diet and started me on the GSLP. After a few months on GSLP we met again switched to a power building program. When I started I was around 190lbs. When my son was born in January 2011 I was 248lbs, squatting 420×7 and pulling 450×7 and had been accused of taking steroids by everyone I work with.
Shortly after that, a spot opened up on my departments ERT team. The tryout was a long day requiring some strength but much more conditioning. For the sake of professional goals I stuck to just the main lifts and focused on conditioning and leaning out.
Fast forward to July 2011 and I’m about 220 which is probably a better weight for me when you factor in life outside of the squat rack. On the flip side I’m bigger, faster and stronger than I’ve ever been.
I attribute my gains to a couple things. My initial consult with John really got me on track. The nutritional plan was straightforward and easy to manage. The program had everything I needed and nothing more. It also had some flexibility to layer in conditioning as needed. I’ll take a little credit because my OCD kicked into full gear and I didn’t miss one workout from May to January.
The purpose of this article wasn’t to thump my chest and try to get a couple cheap compliments. Nor do I think my results are anything special. I know there are a lot of guys on this board that can out lift me any day of the week. But I also know there are guys who look at some of the numbers and think there’s no way. I thought the same thing.
Many of you have followed similar paths. We all came to StrengthVillain for a reason. You now know mine. What’s yours?
DBT is a 5’11″, 220lb beast of a police officer in a college town in Pennsylvania. He spends most of his time breaking up bar fights and keeping the peace in a non-bastard manner. He is a husband and father of two, and will be contributing much to StrengthVillain as well as our soon to debut sister project.