Ali placed first out of seven competitors in the Man's Novice Tall class and third out of ten competitors in the Men's Open Tall. This is a huge accomplishment for a beginner!
Ali prepped well for a first-time competitor. Not just every macronutrient accounted for; also written right in the container. No brainer.
Chris is one week away from his first ever strongman contest, the Hudson Valley Strongman. Under the close eye of Team Guide Stephen, Chris did a run through of events (even though he had to approximate a couple of them) to see where he is standing. His prep did not go as he had hoped (school priorities were intense for him this semester), but he is nonetheless looking solid!
Thanks as always to Total Performance Sports for continuing to support beginner athletes like Chris, teams like Atlas, and all of the strength community with a truly unrivaled facility and pool of knowledge!
It's a Next Level tradition; a right of passage, if you will. Into the cool evening a team goes, and together creates drills and workouts emphasizing dynamic ranges, power and – of course – conditioning and fat loss.
Atlas just attacked their first session, and even though it was only "basic content," the intensity was rough. Sam hit it hard and conquered any doubt that he can become the next great bodybuilder/strongman. Meanwhile, Ali, whose first contest fast approaches, began learning how to increase his fat burning.
Special thanks to Phil "Bakuri" (Wolfpack) for being a Team guide for the session, and coming through for Alex!
Ali's progress shots at five weeks out from his first bodybuilding competition. The lines are coming in and he's in great conditioning for his goal of gaining experience in his first show in order to take what he learned into his second and third competitions.
The while team is getting excited for how he's coming along.
Beginning of March, and Ali continuers to slowly get leaner.Read More
The team settles up on a name: Atlas.
And they have a seriously kick-ass logo.Read More
It is the key to understanding competitive bodybuilding symmetry; an ancient mathematical concept so true it is startling, yet so overlooked it is frustrating. It's an irrational number named "phi," 1.618…, and looking at it has given yet another Next Level team an edge in competition.Read More
Do not be mistaken, that is his happy face. Cuts just beginning to show and holding mass very well at the onset.
Behold the remains of an intensive review on diet strategies : a ruined marker board, a team of athletes with a pile of homework, and a coach with a minor headache.
Here we see mostly just the marker board.
About 12 weeks out or so. Right on target.
This is one scary heavyweight.
Steven's new leg day. Quads burn to a crisp and that much more functional for the wear.
"Lifting" is actually the art of getting underneath things.
Sam is learning this fast. With some mobility and flexibility, he ought be able to gradually achieve a frighteningly competent drop press.
Stephen Cyr is the Team Guide for The Next Level Spring team. (A guide is somewhere between a team captain and an assistant coach; a means for athletes to make a transition in real-time to leader, champion or coach in their own right.)
Recently, while training with the guys, he showed them what bodybuilders look like when they're not presenting: essentially, like heavy lifters.
Chris likes to lift heavy.
And while his focus this season is appropriately on improving his ranges and technique, here we see what he can do when he just bullies into a heavy bar.
That thing didn't stand a chance.
As his techniques evolve and improve, no doubt he will be a killer!
Another close lock for Steven. He is SO close to this, with only some technique tweaks in his way.
Again, this clip is not important as an example of perfect technique or amazing accomplishment. But rather to show the amazing accomplishment of just not giving up.
SPOILER: He doesn't get it.
But that's not why these clips are important. They are vital for another reason.
You see, Steven has never managed to complete this weight before. And while he is constantly adjusting and improving his form in order to eventually get it, in the end it is his dedication and refusal to give up will be what will make or break a conquest of the weight.
That is why these clips are important. Not as an example of perfect technique or amazing accomplishment. But as proof of a key factor: not giving up.
Being defeated is worse than a moment of failure. And no matter how many times he fails, Steven will not be defeated.
It is this attitude that will eventually produce his victories.