A blog about Grip Strength, Dinosaur Training, Feats of Strength, Stonelifting, Kettlebell Training, Strength and Conditioning for Martial Arts, and the Paleo Diet.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

(English) Home gyms: part I

Who doesn't love home gyms?

A friend of mine, Martin, sent me pictures of his formidable home gym setup a few days ago. I think it is a good example of how you could equip a small space so it won't lack anything and serve you a lifetime.

- Powerrack including...
- ...olympic bar...
- ... and skidproof washing mashine mats
- A lot of weight plates...
- ...on beautiful self-welded wall racks

- Two sturdy benches
- Stationary bike

- Cable tower
- Two Kettlebells
- Motivating Poster

And this corner is my favourite:

- Miscellaneous accessories
- TV for motivating videos
- Leg curl mashine (?)
- Fridge!


Great home gym.


(Deutsch) Home Gyms: Teil 1

Wer liebt Home Gyms nicht?

Ein Freund von mir, Martin, hat mir neulich Bilder von seinem vorbildlichen selbst eingerichteten Trainingsraum geschickt. Ich denke es ist ein gutes Beispiel dafür wie man zuhause auf kleinem Raum ein super 'Studio' einrichten kann, dem es an nichts fehlt und das ein Leben lang hält:

- Powerrack mit...
- ...olympischer Stange...
- ... und rutschfesten Waschmaschinenmatten
- Jede Menge Gewichte....
- ...an wunderschönen selbst geschweißten Wandhalterungen

- Zwei stabile Bänke
- Heimtrainer

- Seilzug
- Zwei Kettlebells
- Motivierendes Poster

Und diese Ecke gefällt mir am besten:

- Diverses Zubehör
- Fernseher für motivierende Videos
- Beinbizepstrainer (?)
- Kühlschrank!


Super Heimstudio.

Euer Robert

Sunday, May 6, 2012

(English) How to find a tire for Strongman training

A short field report and some advice on how to get hold of a tire for Strongman training (tire flip). Credit goes to the incredible Leo Moser  (www.ll-motion.at), who gave me some advice to start out on my search for a tire.

Here is the tire I found this way. Ain't she a beauty?

It weighs 770 lbs.

Finding the tire: I went to my local tire dealer and explained the issue to the guy in the office: I'm looking for an old tractor tire or something similar for Strongman training. Somewhere between 660 and 880 lbs. Luckily, almost everyone is familiar with the Strongman sport and especially craftsmen are fascinated by it. He was willing to help me right away. After a few phone calls it turned out that their company had no appropiate tire lying around. To my surprise the man began calling all rival companies in town. The last one he called told him, yes, they have a damaged wheel of a digger which can be disposed of. I can come and pick it up.

So I had found my tire the first time I tried. My conclusion is that it is not much of a problem to find a fitting tire in a larger town with a couple of tire dealers, if you allow yourself a couple of weeks' time in the worst case.

Paying for the tire: I already knew from Leo Moser and some other people that tire dealers usually simply dispose of damaged tire which cannot be reconditioned (for example, if there is a hole somewhere in the rim). They probably even have to pay a fee to get rid of it, which they save if you take it. So: never pay for a tire. If someone offers you a tire and wants you to pay for it, because he could still make use of it otherwise, be patient and wait for a better opportunity.

However: a few workers at the company where I picked up the tire really toiled to help me with loading the tire. Therefore I gave them 10 EUR to buy a cup of coffee. As the workers themselves won't have any personal benefit from helping you, I think this is the least you can do. 10 EUR as the only expenses for such a nice piece of equipment is probably even rather stingy.

Hauling the tire: A friend of mine lent me a trailer to transport the tire with my Jeep. However, the tailer wasn't wide enough, so I had to load it slantwise, leaning on one of the side panels. I had fixed it properly with ratchet straps, but I was still very careful when driving through town. If your trailer, loaded with a 770 lbs tire, tilts in a turn, it won't be a lot of fun. If possible borrow a trailer where you can be sure the tire can lie flat. You will feel a whole lot better. An alternative is a delivery truck, but even there I would make sure it is wide enough for the tire to lie relatively flat, or can be tied down securely. If it see-saws while driving, or starts to roll to and fro, you won't have fun either.

The slantwise loaded tire had one advantage, though: I could unload it relatively easily on my own. As it was already almost upright, I only had to erect it completely and roll it off the trailer. Do this only if there is ample saftey space. Who knows where the tire will roll and what damage it will cause there.
When loading the tire onto your vehicle you will be dependent on the know-how of the working at the tire dealer. Generally, however, it is not a bad idea to take a strong buddy with you for the whole process. A tire you can flip with much effort as a trained man, can usually be flipped by two strong, untrained men as well. Having a friend with you will save you a lot of work and risk when unloading the tire. Should the tire land unluckily and cannot be left lying where it is, you will have to perform a feat of strength on the spot, with a tire you probably never had a chance to test. With the help of a friend it will only be half as difficult lift it upright and roll it away, if necessary.

Determining the weight: If you tell your tire dealer you need a tire wheighing exactly 689.8 lbs, not more and not less, you won't have any luck. Because most of the time the tire experts won't know themselves how heavy a tire is exactly (why should they, it is of no use for them to know). The following helped me to pick a tire: I asked one of the workers, now, how heavy is  that tire? Of course he couldn't tell me exactly, but he remarked that neither he nor any of his colleagues is able to 'flip' it on their own - two of them together can do it, though. This sounded like the proper mix of challenge with possibility to me.

Still, I wanted to know the exact weight of the tire (at least to let you guys know). So before I picked up the tire I drove to the local junk yard, where I know they have a truck scale. I drove onto it with car and empty trailer and asked for the weight. I noted it down. Then I went to pick up the tire. Once I had it on the trailer, I drove to the junk yard again and asked for the weight once more. It was almost exactly 770 lbs more.

By the way, if you behave naturally all the time and act as if what you are doing is self-evident, you will not be faced with too many questions.

Storing the tire: Remember: it is not a rpoblem for the tire dealer to give away a damaged tire for free, because they will probably save a disposal fee. This means: if you want to get rid of your tire, it is likely that you have to pay! Except if you find someone in your vicinity who trains as fanatically as you, has the space, and takes it over (rather unlikely). So get hold of a tire only if you have the space to store it indefinitely! Getting rid of it quickly can become a real problem otherwise.

Apart from that, storage isn't complicated. Neither snow, rain, frost, nor sun can damage your tire to such a degree that you won't be able to train with it.

As a rule, tires are preserved for a longer time that humanity could wish for.

Have fun flipping tires.