Ethical Dilemmas

  1. A guy and his girlfriend do the Madcow program.  He squats approx 195×5.  He tells you that he is looking forward to doing his 1st meet in four months.  He weighs 175 and wants your opinion on whether he should lift @ 181 or 165.  Your opinion is “You should not lift at all because it’ll just be a waste of a good Saturday and $85.”  (i.e. you have the potential to not win in a contest where everyone is a winner) Do you tell him this?
  2. A girl with a smoking hot body; wearing shorts the size of underwear and a sports bra; is doing half squats with 85 lbs.  You don’t want to tell her to fix her form because obviously she trains to look good and she is succeeding.  You don’t want to even talk to her at all.  But…she has the rack set up too high, so that she has to do a calf raise to rerack the bar.  This is annoying you to no end.  Also, she is the gf of a guy who has always been friendly to you.  Do you say anything about the rack height?

Answers (for me): 1) No, 2) Yes

3. This is the trickiest one.  “George” is a 181 lb lifter.  He’ll be in my weight class at the meet.  It’s his first meet.  He deadlifts 475, benches 275?, and the other day told me that he squatted 385.  He’s a friendly guy.  He and his wife came last year to the meet just to be spectators and watch other lifters.  His best quality is that he often asks for my advice.  His worst quality is that he often asks for my advice.  Ha, jk.

So he sets up to do box squats.  He uses this little metal stand about 18″ by 18″, and asks when he is sitting on it – is it below parallel.  I tell him no.  Then I say that I would use the aerobic steps because their height is adjustable.  Also because I never use the little metal stand bc I’m worried about puncturing my rectum on an edge or a corner if I don’t hit the box exactly.  Of course he is worried about that too, now 🙂 so he goes and gets the aerobic steps.  I recommend the height to use so that he is an inch or so below parallel.

When he starts doing the box squats, I notice that he is just sort of tapping the box with his glutes.  I show him how to do a Box Squat the Westside ™ way.  He explains that he is just doing it to check his depth.

So I stop helping him, but am somewhat puzzled.  For one thing he squats into the mirror so he can see his depth.  For another, I can just watch him and tell him.  Also, just learn what parallel feels like (he’s been squatting for about 8 mos.)  Or go lower if you are not sure.  Wide range of better solutions but I guess it’s not the end of the world to do it his way. 

Except he’s not parallel any more.  When I checked his depth, he was sitting on the box.  Just touching the skin of his ass (really he started his ascent as soon as he brushed his hamstring against it) to the box made him at least 2″ high.

I just left without giving any advice and asked my wife if I should say anything.  “No.” she said, after about 0.8 seconds.  I’m not totally sure if she was listening, but I’ll go with it.

Oh yeah, I also worked out:

Front Squat: 45×3, 115×2, 185, 255, 295, 315, 325, 335; 270,275,280,285,290,295, 274×1,1, 279


Push Press: 45×9, 95×3, 145×2, 195, 220, 230; 190,195,200,205,210,215, 190,195×2, 190×3


RDL: 155×3, 205×2, 275, 310×3; 220×3, 225×3

I thought I was good at RDL.  Casual examination of the Internet refutes this notion.  Time to improve.

Chinups: 5,5,4,4


Band Pulling

Time of workout: 2 hrs.  Time spent talking to old guy in locker room, mostly against my will: 10 minutes.  Time spent clearing snow off my car afterwards: 15 minutes.


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