In a matter of 15 years you go from someone who can't bench the bar to benching a bar loaded with a dozen 45-pound plates. The journey to get there requires lots of pain and sacrifices that must be made.
It doesn't have to be a suffrage - the bench press lifestyle can be one of the most exciting ones in existence if your outlook is wise.
Follow these tips so you can go far, overcome fears and enjoy every second climbing the bench press ladder.
1 - Enjoy All Accomplishments.
If you're a beginner benching 135, an intermediate benching 315, or even an advanced bencher benching 675 for the first time, you'll simply amaze yourself! You get off the bench, celebrate, and think "Holy Sh*t!"
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The animal desire will be burning and you'll be ready to take your benching to the next level and then the next!
This will only build confidence to blast through any bench press obstacle you will face in your quest to becoming that bench press super star you always wanted to be!
2 - Enjoy The Highs & Learn From The Lows.
|WHAT'S YOUR GOAL|
If you have the determination and bravery to
attempt ... beginner or pro - feel good about it. (Bravery is doing things even when you know you will lose.)
Anyone who ever amounted to something in benching has experienced successes and failure. Remember though, the only moments that can't be remembered or enjoyed are the ones never attempted.
It's not even about the temporary failures anyway; it's the whole journey. If you miss a weight, a new path opens, same as if you succeed. Free yourself from the success/failure mindset and take it all as a great learning experience!
3 - It's The Big Picture That Matters Most.
It's the journey that counts. Most people find their favorite places to be Florida or Mexico. Benchers on the other hands favorite place is being alone on a bench with the bar loaded and smashing past personal records!
It isn't just the max attempt that is important - It is man vs. the bar; survival of the physically and mentally strong; the attitude of will - It's the sacrifice it takes to get there is what brings benchers the ultimate satisfaction when the moment comes to conquer a goal.
You alone with the bench; It's war; the 3 most intense seconds of your life; it can give you a feeling that nothing else can. Setting personal records and breaking your records time after time after time.
The things you see, the people you meet, the adrenaline rush, the training partners yelling your name and exploding personal records, time after time - The bench press is the continuous feeling of Victory!!!
4 - We Can Be A Great Bencher At Any Age!
Just fall in love with the sport - The bench press is an exercise that just about anyone can do. It's a lift where you can only get better if you prepare well and train hard.
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Most of all the bench press is a great way to stay competitive against yourself while you go through your teens, and throughout life. Your age does not matter!
5 - Allow The Bench Press To Make You A Better Person.
The bench press is a lot like life in that you must overcome many small obstacles to realize your final goals.
Whether it is a world record holder, a champion athlete, achieving a bigger upper body and most of all if you have the guts to bench, you will have the guts to attempt anything!
This is great because in life, as it is relative, we all have strengths and weaknesses depending on the environment that we are in.
Benching teaches us to be humble, hard working and open minded; we can carry these tools to other areas of our lives and accomplish more than we could ever imagine.
6 - The Only Person You Have To Beat Is Yourself.
Many of us became lifters because we have egos that rejected what we once were or from negative experiences. The lean guy rejects the fat guy, the fat guy rejects the fitness guy so we meet this internal pain called shadows.
We must remember though: if an ecto walked in the super heavyweight's shoes, then he would have been different. If he was put in an ectos shoes then his experiences with training would have been different as well.
| What Does Ecto Mean?
Ectomorph (ecto) is a body type. Ectomorphs have short upper bodies, long arms/legs, long/narrow feet and hands, little fat, narrow chest and shoulders, and long thin muscles. Ectomorphs are hard gainers.
We must remember that we are all the same and the only way to be internally healthy is to feel whole; negative experiences ruin that wholeness.
By understanding and making the journey, a battle against ourselves is the best thing we can do - for we only have our own bodies and styles that we must beat to move on!
Make the bench press journey a battle against yourself! Support your buddies and realize we are all in this together! If you worry about everyone else, you will lose track of yourself and go through your bench press quest in a state of hate and pain.
7 - Never Settle.
I hear people say "
I want to bench 315 and then I will quit." Or after I hit xxx weight, I will train easy and only do sets and reps. it doesn't work like that! If you're training with 185x5 now and are attempting 225x1.
| What Does It Take To Bench 315?
Anyone Can Bench 315! It just takes the right nutrition, routine & supplements.
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By the time you get to 315 you're going to want to rep it 3 times! Then you will be adding 10s and screaming, "350, here I come and nothing is going to stop me!!"
You will crank up the volume, practice your mental imagery and by the time you step into the gym you will set yourself on fire. Then, 400, 425, 450 will come. It only gets bigger from there!
8 - Take Advantage Of Whatever You Can.
There is training information out everywhere.
From Critical Bench, Westside Barbell, Top lifters making customized programs, strength coaches, videos, interviews, articles, training programs and just about any great is willing to teach you what it takes to bench more.
You decide, what's more important? $50 or bench press excellence that will last a lifetime. If you take advantage of what's out there you will learn and you will be on the path to being a champion.
Your desire, drive, determination, discipline, dedication, intensity, integrity and intelligence will take care of the rest!
9 - You Can't Be The Best At Everything.
To be great at anything you will have to give things up: Too many people try being a bench press star, having the greatest mile time, being the biggest, the most ripped, fastest and the best athlete all at the same time.
You can't have all and if you want a big bench you have to make great sacrifices.
It's give to gain, as everything requires a different talent. It's a battle of desires and you must let the desire you want most win out and win big! So stop dreaming of being 6-foot-2 and 450 pounds of muscle and beating Lance Armstrong in bike races.
Trevor Smith Making Jay Cutler Look Small.
What you feed grows and what you ignore diminishes. Pick a goal, then hit that goal and decide where to go from there.
10 - Set Direct Goals.
It's simple to get anywhere you need to know where you are going. If you train to 225 every workout, you stay there!
"If you never quit and keep striving,
this is the making of a champion"
Try to cycle your workouts; add weight to the bar, do a speed day with the bungee bands, make weaker muscles stronger, get stronger throughout the range of motion and soon 225 will be 255, 275, 300, and so on.
11 - Use Fear To Your Advantage To Go To The Next Level.
Sometimes we fear to go to the next level. I think it's basic, "ectos are scared to lose their 6 packs, big guys fear being weak for their size, or simply put, it's easier to just walk around looking big without having to back it up."
The bottom line is: the ones who aren't afraid to be different, who are willing to be freaks, who every time they step into the gym get insane in the head and think "Welcome to Hell," get in the zone, turn the volume up and turn into lions, attacking the bench every time, will bench big!
12 - Run Away From Mental Barriers.
In benching we want to move ahead but some people get freaked out by "225" or "405." This is called "Mental Barriers."
Mental barriers come partially from the way one was raised, genetics, past failures and because they don't know how to overpower the subconscious part of the brain (as it doesn't really think on a conscious level).
Some try to overcome it with trickery, but that is a temporary solution. The 2 best ways to overcome mental blocks:
1 - Practice The Single!!!
The single strengthens all your attachments, perfects your form and builds confidence.
2 - Treat Every Single Weight The Same.
If it's the bar say "
I'm gonna explode it." You should be so focused on the setup that there is no way you can let the weight scare you!
You visualize, picture yourself lifting the weight, let the monster (internal motivation) build and save it all for the exact moment (when you're lifting the weight).
With proper setup, internal motivation and practice you shall be confident and ready to go to the next level. With time, habits and experience you can conquer just about anything!
13 - Don't Believe In Magic Answers.
Many people believe "if you do this exercise you will get super strong." "If you take this supplement, you will be strong." The mindset that goes deeper into the "gym talk" gets confused and gets farther away from the "gym gains."
People get so wrapped up in information they lose track of what's really most important! It's not the bench shirt, it's not the supplement, it's not the pros routine. It's simple: for anything to work, you must work and make them work!
14 - I Know Benching Hurts, But ...
Don't think of it as
you vs. pain. Think of pain as your friend!! You need to use it all to your advantage! Most of us think you should think, "Pain is nothing, and I'm going to conquer it while it's happening."
In reality you are just playing with aspects of pain and fighting it.You don't fight it, you go along with it.
Same with fear - Stay in the moment and realize you are powerful: when you are trying to mess with power/fear that is a great way to cause mental blocks fast!
Let everything work for you! And then you can have the heart and drive of a wild animal!
15 - Putting It All Together.
So, you have found a routine, you have discovered the training techniques that work for you, you have your goals, your diet is down, and attitude and routine is down. You know what it takes to bench big and you want to enjoy it. So let's put it all together, the internal pieces to loving that wild bench press ride ...
- Enjoy All Accomplishments
- Lose The Success / Failure Mindset
And replace it with an enlightened learning experience mindset.
- It's The Big Picture That Matters!
Mess ups are temporary, so remember to always be proud of what you have become and that you're giving it your all.
- Anyone Can Enjoy The Bench Press.
From a 15 yr old to 30 to 70. It's a lifetime battle.
- Allow The Bench To Make You Stronger In All Aspects Of Life.
If you can bench you shouldn't fear trying to get a job or approaching women. Confidence takes you a long way.
- The Only Person You Have To Beat Is Yourself.
This saves you from the stress of putting down others and you'll make greater gains as you are more in the zone with your own body and training.
- Never Quit
Gains take time and really do add up, stay patient.
- Take Advantage Of Whatever You Can.
Learn from the guys who came before you.
- You Can't Be The Best At Everything.
Benching is benching and nothing else. A Chinese proverb said, "The person who tries to chase 2 rabbits usually catches neither."
- Set Direct Goals
You can't go from 135 to 700 if you don't have direction to get there.
- Use Fear To Your Advantage.
Think of it like this ... are you more of a monster before you bench or when you make your bed? That's what I thought. Turn fear into attitude!
- Run Away from Mental Barriers.
Benching is extreme; if you can't believe to achieve in benching then go bodybuild.
- Don't Believe In Magic Answers.
If it was easy, having a big bench wouldn't mean anything.
- Make Pain Your Friend.
If you can't you will lose desire and burn out.
Keep adding layers, shades and positive experiences to your views! And it will only get better ... there is no end to learning. Training is always evolving and we all have something to offer.
Follow these attitudes and you will learn to love the bench press and the training! It's the only way to survive! Keep smiling and destroying all personal records, and remember to smile and laugh every time you do it!
Now step into the bench with that 'positive-crazy-warrior' mind set that you always wanted!