Strength & Fitness Newsletter

I’m constantly amazed at just how much my training is influenced by the people on this site. Whether you’re looking for a new piece of equipment, an unusual exercise variation or just an idea of how others approach things, you’ll enjoy these :

Over to you. I’d love to hear what you think : leave your comments on the above articles, and share them with your friends/colleagues/clients and so on.

NB : If you’re keen to do more writing in 2014 and would like to submit your own piece for Straight to the Bar, here’s how.

Video : Nutrient Timing – Is There a Post Workout Anabolic Window?

Very interesting indeed. Cheers Josh.

Gymchat 259 – Chronic Pain Research (Nutrition/Supplements/Habits – Kamal Patel)

There are many forms of chronic pain – none of them a whole lot of fun.
What’s behind the pain itself; the foods you eat? Supplements you take? Your lifestyle?
Joining us this week is Nutrition Researcher Kamal Patel, together with Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett. Fantastic.

NB : We love hearing from as many people as possible. Join Kamal and Josh on the Hangout, or fire in your questions via the Q&A. Full details below.
And if you’d like to point your friends/colleagues to the discussion, just use the ‘share‘ button at the top of that page. The more the merrier.

Details –

Who : Nutrition Researcher Kamal Patel, Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett, and You
Topic : Chronic Pain Research
When : Monday Oct 13, 8:00pm EDT (the Event page shows what time that is in your local timezone).
How : Watch the live stream, join the hangout (just add Top Form Fitness to one of your circles, and Josh’ll send out the URL when the Hangout starts), or jump in the Q&A on the Event page itself. We’ll also post the full video on the main site shortly after the Gymchat.

Previously : In Gymchat 258 we discussed Questioning Fitness Authority (Your Trainer Might Be Wrong) (with Performing Strongman/Author/Speaker Bud Jeffries and Personal Trainer and Strength Athlete Josh Hewett). Great conversation.
If you missed the live stream (or just want to go over a particular point again), you can watch the entire video here.

Tip of the Week: Returning to Heavy Training – Inspecting the Equipment

Each week we publish a number of tips and techniques via Twitter, Google+, the blog; and now the newsletter. Wherever you are, there’s always a way to improve what you’re doing.
This tip is an answer to the question ‘If you’re using your old gear, how do you test things to make sure they’re still safe and working correctly?‘, directed at Vic Magary during the Heavy Training after a Break Gymchat. A great discussion.

Vic Magary

Vic Magary.

“I think the most important thing to inspect would be the J-cups where you set the bar. Also simply taking a wrench to all of the bolts of a rack to make sure they are good and tight. Depending on the type, you may want to double check the collars. I’d think the barbell and plates would be fine even after a few years as long as they were subject to normal conditions.”

Good stuff.

Re-Reading : Becoming a Supple Leopard

Great book.
The Goodreads piece we noted earlier put me in mind of many superb fitness books, including Kelly Starrett’s Becoming a Supple Leopard. Love it.
A quick overview on what the book’s all about :
It’s Kelly’s approach to mobility. A detailed understanding of how the body works; in order to improve athletic performance, reduce injury time and a whole lot more.

From the Amazon page

If you are like me you won’t put this thing down. I am going through it a second time as I write this. I have already recommended it to all my patients, and this will be a staple in my office and it is a must read for anyone that has a BODY – I guess that covers all of you reading this. In closing I have spent thousands of dollars on seminar after seminar. I can say unequivocally that this book has more information in it, which by the way is very simplistic for you to implement, than all of the education I have received on the dynamics of the human body.

Becoming a Supple Leopard. Fantastic.

Quick update on the Hip Thruster we mentioned recently – fantastic thing.
Rather than trying to explain how it works, here it is in action :

Good stuff Bret, looks great.

Exercise of the Week : Duck-Feet Clean-Grip Deadlift

Duck-Feet Deadlift

Heels in, toes out.

Thib takes a look at 10 deadlift variations, including this one – the Duck-Feet Clean-Grip Deadlift. Oddly appealing (particularly as it hits the quads a little harder than usual).

Incidentally, if you’d like to get in touch regarding this or any other aspect of strength, you can contact me here. Look forward to hearing from you.

New Guide : The Straight to the Bar Guide to Fat Loss

We’ve received some fantastic feedback following Vic Magary‘s Gymchats on Fat Loss, cheers. Greatly appreciated.
If fat loss is one of your own fitness goals, and you haven’t yet watched the discussions, you’ll find them all here. I’ve also added several other fat loss resources we’ve noted over the years – all of them highly recommended. Dive in.

Straight to the Bar Strength Calendar

Taking part in, helping out with or going to watch an upcoming strength competition?
Tell us about it.

Kettlebell Exercise Demonstrations & Tutorials

Pavel Tsatsouline with Flamebell

We’ve looked at a lot of kettlebell exercises and variations over the years – in the form of tips, tutorials and demonstrations.
Where do you find them all? Right here – a complete list of Kettlebell Exercise Demonstrations & Tutorials.

A Daily Dose

Straight to the Bar Daily

Love this stuff? Same here. If you’re looking for a daily dose of strength-training goodness, grab the Straight to the Bar Daily.
Absolutely free.


If you’ve been training for a while, gradually cleaning up your diet, no doubt you’ve experienced the amazing power of transformation. It’s a tremendous feeling.
If you’re ready to give someone else a hand to transform their own lives – through education, sharing equipment, financial help – take a look at the full list of organisations on the Giving page. Cheers.