As Seen On

Sasquatch is REAL!


I’m here to tell you Sasquatch is REAL!

You better believe it.

I mean think about it.  Do you actually think that some (out of work crazy old men) hunters would actually make it up that they saw something incredible and lie about seeing Sasquatch (just to make their own miserable lives exciting)?

Don’t miss this post!
Well, you just don’t believe in humanity then.  These (flannel wearers) men wouldn’t put their reputation and integrity on the line and make fake footprints (with a fake molded gigantic foot) just for some fleeting notoriety?

I mean, can you deny these photos?


If you tell me Sasquatch is NOT real, what’s next?  The Easter Bunny?  Spandex isn’t cool?  Mentos isn’t the fresh maker?

Well, the reason I know Sasquatch is real is that I’ve seen something even rarer than a Yeti sighting – a legit squat from a highschool athlete.

The Building of the High School Athlete


“A boy comes to me with a spark of interest and it becomes a flame. I feed the flame and it becomes a fire. I feed the fire and it becomes a roaring blaze.” Cus D’Amato

Do you remember that feeling when one of your athletes hit that first 135 lb squat or that 225 lb bench press or whatever PR they were going for?  That overwhelming sense of pride?

I’d love to have to feeling every minute of every day.  For some reason you think back about the time YOU hit a PR.  You are so happy for them and excited for them because you know how it feels.  Also, you were part of this small victory.


Mike, one of my athletes, is coming into his senior year.  Wrestling season is starting soon and he is testing out of his strength phase.  We are moving into the pre-season conditioning and speed phase.

I took Mike from a spark, that first day he come to train, to a flame.

He started with the barbell when his friends were in the highschool weightroom with too much weight and too little range of motion.

He started with little kettlebells when no one around here knows what kettlebells are.

I always told him, “Form, form, form” and the weight will come.  When I got Mike he was lean but weak.

He was not only weak, he was dedicated…and that is all you need.


Mike has recently hit in the gym:

Full Squat:  315 lbs

Front Squat:  265 lbs

Sumo Dead:  405 lbs

Bench Press:  255 lbs

Double 65 lb Kettlebell Clean & Press for 3 reps

5 x 10 Thick Grip Pull-ups

The music in the video is from Try.Fail.Repeat, they’re AWESOME!  Go to their site and buy all of their music!

The Program

Top 10 Tips for Athletic Strength Training Programs

1.  Start With No weight, Work on Form. As a coach, watch EVERTHING!  The breathing, posture, the stability, the movement, the balance, their feedback.  It is that important.  Break them down and rebuild them.

2.  Again, FORM is King. Chaos can be trained but this is in addition to fixed, linear strength training movements.  Fix their form, fix their posture.  Do not push the weight, push the discipline.

3.  Include Everything and Include NOTHING. There are kettlebells, dbs, barbells, chains, bands, sandbags, tires, thick ropes and about 1000 other freaking “tools”.  Use them all!  But, there are times when you should NOT use any tools, ie. go back to bodyweight training.  That is a very real, very important and very productive form of training.

4.  Where are the Compensations. Watch them with eagle eyes.  Is one arm lagging, do they push to the side when squatting, is their running mechanics off, how do they land from a jump?  Remember, you can see compensations when they use barbells, but you will see completely different compensations when they use db’s or even bodyweight.

5.  Be Like Water.


I’m not talking about static stretching.  I’m not talking about dynamic stretching.  I’m not talking about conventional, linear mobility movements & patterns.  I’m talking about flow. When you put tension (load) on the body, it tightens to overcome (or be overcome) by this tension.  Put this on top of crappy form and short range of motion exercises, YOU WILL LOCK THE ATHLETE UP.  The tension must be released and movement must be enhanced and promoted.  Think moving like an animal.  This is the biggest revelation I’ve had in the last year.

6.  There is no Perfect Program. Remember that.  As the athlete changes, so too does the workout AND the program.  You must change the workout real-time (according to their feedback, recovery and your observations) and you must change the program as the athlete evolves.  As they develop, as they fail.  All programs work up until a point.  It all adheres to the SAID principle.  Put the body on a “new” volume, a “new” exercise or a “new” program and there will be a compensation to overcome this stimuli. The program must be reactive and progressive.

7.  Full Range of Motion. Use the tools through a full range of motion.  Full squats, pressing with the bar touching your chest, pull-ups to the chest,  lunges from a deficit, and so on…  Google Law of Repetitive Motion.

8.  Talk, Call, Email, Twitter (I hate myself) Other Trainers. You have to keep learning, you have to keep asking questions, you have to NEVER BE SATISFIED WITH YOUR CURRENT LEVEL OF KNOWLEDGE AND ABILITY TO HELP MAKE THE ATHLETE BETTER.  As soon as you quit, I will beat you.  Because I’m f*cking relentless, because I am never satisfied.  I want to learn.

9. Teach While You Train. Do NOT put the athlete on an exercise unless they know why they are doing it.  If they know WHY, then they will do it with purpose.  And if you don’t know why you are making them do it, then don’t make them do it.  If you want them to do it and it has a purpose, but they can’t do it – then regress the exercise.  Because there is always a way and there is a progression and regression to all exercises.

10.  Live Every Minute of Your Life. Hey, it is going to be over soon, you better be good to people, you better love your family and friends with the red hot intensity of 1000 suns and you better give to others when no one is looking.


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25 Responses to “Sasquatch is REAL!”

  1. sidharth Says:

    Hey Smitty,

    This post is like salvation to me and all of us who had been putting blood and sweat to break all performance barriers.
    At the same time its a reality check for all.
    When i was doing good i realized and i tried to practice these principles to train myself, but then shit happens and i got injured while i badly handled a case of plateau , i was frustrated but the injury was more frustrating and it wrecked me. You and your crew’s work and dedication has put the belief back in me to back myself and get back to 100% and more. It wasn’t like this some years back until i found you guys, so any amounts of thanks is less. So thanks a lot for this checklist again, DieselCrew is an inspiration!

  2. Jim Smith Says:

    If you work hard and you’re consistent, you can reach your goals.

    Be relentless and never doubt yourself.

    Thanks Sidharth!

  3. Doug Says:

    Copy, Paste, Save, Print, Apply.

    This post shows me exactly where I want to be, in regards to coaching not “training” my clients. Thanks Smitty.

  4. Jim Smith Says:

    Thanks for reading Doug!

  5. Mark Huband Says:

    Great video. Mike looks strong as hell and shows great technique in all his lifts. The depth in the front and back squats is particularly impressive. Keep up the good work!

  6. Smitty Says:

    Thanks Mark, I’m sure he’ll be glad to hear that.

  7. Dustin Lebel Says:

    Awesome post and transformation! #10 is the tip that many people seem to be missing…live your passion and give back!

  8. Adam L Says:

    #8 From above?,
    As I am not a trainer but try to help others with my ever growing knowledge in fitness, how or where can I get some spot checking on my form and principles? When I get out of the sandbox (>14 days!) I plan on taking the family camera to the gym and taping myself, posting on youtube and hope to get some spot checks from anyone. I have came across some Xfitters that have helped me with some of my exercises but lack the ‘strongman’ knoweldge that I want to persue. Thank you for the post as always Smitty. Wish I could watcht the video, but my internet out here moves at the speed of smell.
    Semper Fi

  9. smitty Says:

    Adam – start a youtube channel and send the links through and we’ll talk through each one

  10. Al in Vancouver Says:


    You nailed this post out of the park!

  11. Jim Smith Says:

    Thanks Al!

  12. Andy Book, CSCS Says:

    Smitty, Awesome stuff as always. Have you had Mike do my “New Twist on the 40 Yard Dash” circuit yet?

  13. Jim Smith Says:

    Definitely bro, we’ve been throwing everything at him.

    Here is Andy’s killer article!

  14. Max Shank Says:

    Amen, brother! Spread the word.

  15. Jim Smith Says:

    Thanks for reading Max.

  16. andrew kirkhouse Says:

    great video,
    it would be interesting to know what nutritional advice you gave this young athlete.I think there may be a new ufc fighter in the making.The video shows some great dedication and self discipline.Your top ten tips make real sense keep up the great work and i really enjoy the knowledge you pass on.
    Thanks Andy K.

  17. Mike Hanley Says:

    It is so great to watch athletes or anyone for that matter get better, stronger, faster, healthier day after day, week after week, month after month. It is the reason I am in this profession and will continue to be in this profession til the day I die.

    Great post Sniffy:)

    Mike Hanley

  18. chris g. Says:

    love this one.. just some more motivation to keep on doing what im doing! thanks man

  19. Guy Jones Says:

    Hi Jim,
    Once again a magnificent piece of writing. I couldn’t agree with you more. You have to keep on learning and never be satisfied with what you know, cos its a drop in the ocean of what is to be known. You should check out the little known art of systema also known as the Russian System. I learnt a shed load about movement and the nature of tension and relaxation as it relates to breathing. Fascinating stuff



  20. Jim Smith Says:

    Thanks Guy for reading!

  21. Jim Smith Says:

    Thanks Chris!

  22. Simon Voggeneder Says:

    Hi Jim,
    this posting is just great. The story of an athlete that learned to become strong the right way – it is a rare see these days and I feel that Mike has evolved tremendously.

    He will now be stronger and more mature than he has ever been – thanks to your guidance, in particular. This is the way, I would love to be coached – as it is a rare see as well to have a good coach on your side.

    Keep the stories coming – I am highly motivated right now!

    In love for life

  23. Gunny Says:

    Interesting post. I like the variety of exercises and stressing the technique. It is easy for trainers, coaches, etc. to want to get to the end results faster than they should (meaning ok technique, minor program adjustments, minor nutritional adjustments etc.)

    It seems in the US we are always trying to get the end result as fast as possible without thinking through our process to get there and in result we tend to do the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Thank you for the great post– it helps keep me doing the right things instead of giving in to the money game (quanity vs. quality). Thanks again.

  24. JT Says:

    great post! btw how did mike do during the season/?

  25. Jim Smith Says:

    He did great, thanks for asking. 3rd at States!

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