Strength & Speed

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S&S Articles

Why Do New Year�??s Resolutions Fail?

Posted by Strength & Speed on January 3, 2017 at 9:55 AM

     While everyone talks about New Year’s resolutions in January, it is rare to meet someone still referencing them in June. I also do not recall ever meeting someone in December who is like “I did it, I accomplished my New Year’s Resolution.” Although I have not done any deep analysis, based off empirical data, I think most New Year’s resolutions fail (and so do most media websites who cite questionable data), and here is why I think that is….

     I think the main problem with New Year’s resolutions is people try to make a change based off a calendar day. Why make the resolution on 1 January. Why not make it tomorrow or on 7 April? 1 January is really just an arbitrary date that is no different from any other day of the year. If something is important enough for you to make a change, then change. Waiting for a specific date will not suddenly magically give you more discipline or more will power.

     Furthermore, most New Year’s resolutions involve drastic changes, which are often difficult to maintain and are usually unrealistic. So instead of saying “I am only going to drink alcohol once every two weeks” people say “I am done drinking alcohol period.” Try instead making a small change and also be sure it is specific. Instead of just saying I am going to eat healthy use a specific mark so you can tell if you achieved your goal or failed. For example, I am only going to order French fries with my meal once per week. This is specific and can be tracked. This is realistic if you are eating fries two or three times a week. If you are currently eating them seven times a week, you may want to set a smaller goal or one that gets more difficult with time. For example, January only eat fries six times a week, February & March five times a week and progressively lower.

     This is easier said than done and it takes some discipline. How do people have the discipline to change, it is a simple matter of priorities. Discipline is just choosing between what you want now and what you want most. So if losing that weight by the end of the month is more important than eating that extra piece of cake, then you should be able to rationally weigh your options to make a decision.

     One of my friends quit smoking a couple of years ago not by making a New Years resolution but because he got up one day and said “That’s it I’m done.” He threw away his cigarettes and changed immediately. If you are waiting for a day on the calendar to make a change, then you probably do not want it bad enough to actually change. So, instead of making a New Year’s resolution make a lifestyle change and start now, not tomorrow.


The Best & Worst Fitness Advice in One Statement

Posted by Strength & Speed on November 21, 2016 at 10:45 AM

I have a piece of fitness advice that is simultaneously the best and worse advice I can give out. I use this principal almost all the time, knowing it is not the correct book answer. I also rarely tell people about it because I do not want to be the source of a debilitating injury. So what is this magically awesome and terrible piece of advice?

Train through everything.

Yeah, that is right. Train through all your injuries, aches and pains. I have been using this advice for about 15 years. Anytime something hurts…I just pretend it does not and keep training. This has resulted in 15 years of being basically injury free. This includes powerlifting, marathons, bodybuilding, ultra-marathons, OCR and backpacking. Sure I occasionally have problems, but I have never had to take more than a couple of unscheduled days off from training in the last decade and a half. Before you close your computer and go running out the door on your broken leg, this advice does come with some caveats. So take an extra two minutes and finish reading the rest of the article.

Caveat 1: If you are seriously injured, do not train through it. As in you are in a cast, you can no longer walk or there is visible swelling/bruising. However, that does not mean you have to stop working out. In 2002 I broke my wrist after falling off a friend’s shoulder and had my arm in a cast. I obviously stopped lifting weights for that arm but I continued to run, backpack, do sit-ups and lots of one armed pushups (Side note: I actually got really good at them after doing so many for several weeks). To this day my patella tendon hurts sometimes. A couple of years ago it was so bad it caused me to limp for the first mile of a run, but it would go away before mile two. One of the generally accepted rules is, “If it causes you to change form, then you are injured and not just aching.” As it turns out, the pain was/is caused by tight muscles surrounding the tendon pulling on it. Had I not trained through it, I would have never known that.

Caveat 2: If something is wrong, you can take a couple of days off to let it heal. This is really just echoing the sentiments in the above paragraph. I have hurt my back deadlifting before my form got much better. I took a couple of days off and let that heal. I have severely bruised my toe trail running and had it swell to the point I could barely walk. I took a couple of days off, did the standard RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation plus a couple of ibuprofen pill) and kept training.

Caveat 3: If a certain exercise is causing you joint pain, find a different one that works the same muscles without the pain. I have had tendinitis in my elbow for months where every time I did free weight curls it caused me pain. I just switched to machines, pulleys and some free weight bicep movements that did not cause pain for a couple of months….it went away. I have had my knee make funny sounds and cause pain on some leg press machines. I stopped using those machines but still did squats. I have had my shoulder joints ache horribly after doing kipping pull-ups as part of a competition…I switched back to regular pull-ups in a controlled manner. No pain. Basically, you can find a work around for most joint or tendon pain.

Bottom line is I think most people feel some joint pain, get worried about it developing into a worse injury and end up not reaching their potential. This is the first time I have ever stated my “Train through everything” philosophy publicly and I don’t want to be responsible for other people’s injury, so approach with caution. The saying of “do as I say, not as I do” may be spot on in this case. So take this piece of advice and do as you will with it. I have my plan laid out.


When Four Minutes is Enough

Posted by Strength & Speed on August 26, 2016 at 9:50 PM

In today’s fitness world we seem to have a plethora ofoptions. Recently circuit training has come back into the main stream largely due to, in my opinion, the popularity of CrossFit (see my previous article formy take on CrossFit). But out of this resurgence has come a variety of choices from the all-out never ending WOD, to your various High Intensity IntervalTraining (HIIT) classes offered at many gyms across the country to this weird class called Tabata. No, Tabata is not the newest craze dance class like the name may imply. Even though the classes in your local gym may be somewhat new, the Tabata workout was actually created in 1996 by a Japanese physician andresearcher by the name of Dr. Izumi Tabata as a way to increase the maximum volume of oxygen (VO2 max) for Japan’s top speed skaters.

I know you are all saying “Well that’s neat. Why do I care?”  Well because your local gym, and the one I work at are doing it wrong! You see Dr. Tabata’s initial protocol and workout called for only 4 minutes. It’s hard to sell a class for only 4 minutes of work. So the fitness industry took Dr.Tabata’s idea, watered it down some and poof a workout for the masses. Now I am not saying the class at your local gym isn’t any good,  anything that doesn’t pose an elevated risk of injury and can get you up and moving is good. However, my OCD doesn’t like mutant forms of anything, much less a mutated workout (except for X-men and Ninja Turtles those are cool mutants).

So what does the “real” Tabata look like, well it is similar to your class in that it is 20 seconds of work with 10 seconds of rest, however, the kicker is in the intensity. In your class I am assuming the instructor istelling everyone to push hard and really work. But knowing everyone still has another 20 minutes of class left psychologically you are going to leave some fuel in the tank for the rest of the class. In Dr. Tabata's study he found that if the athlete works at 170% of their VO2 max for 20 seconds then rests for 10 seconds after only 8 rounds (4 minutes), this will illicit an increase in VO2 max. Like any workout this is not a one and done fix, Dr. Tabata’s study took place over 6 weeks having the participants perform the exercise multiple times per week. So if the 170% of VO2 maxmight as well be a foreign language to you here is an easier way to figure theintensity. Take 220-your age to find your maximum heart rate (roughly) this is not as fast as your heart can beat it is just a rough estimate that it is asfast as your heart will/should beat during strenuous activity. Now take 120% of that number.  Using myself as an example 220-31=189x120%= 226 is the heartrate I need to achieve. Now most people will say that is very high, which it is…that’s the point. That is also why this workout is only 4 minutes long. That level of intensity is near impossible to draw out for an extended period of time. In the simplest way to explain it, this workout forces your body to work harder and faster than it is able to pump oxygen through your body. So even though you are breathing you are still not getting oxygen to your muscles, thus forcing your body to adapt. The Tabata workout should be made of up primarily total body multi-joint movements, here is an example that I gave to one of myathletes: Sandbag squats, dumb bell cleans, mountain climbers, push-ups,burpees, jump squat, jump lunge, squats. Notice the progression from legs to arms incorporating the entire body then going back to legs, these are all big multi-joint movements with elements of speed and explosion that tax the system much greater than other exercise choices.

Now I understand that to Jane and John gym member this may be alittle intense. This is true, as I stated in the beginning, this work out was designed for top level international caliber athletes. As a trainer I havebegun to implement this on a couple of my clients. Both of which are endurance athletes, whom are accustomed to longer duration workouts.  So when they saw a4-minute workout there was some initial kickback, which only makes sense.  However, after they were not asking me to extend any form of the workout.

For the everyday person intense intervals have been shown to have a longer lasting effect on fat burning post workout and encourage the body to retain muscle as opposed to longer duration steady state cardio which can cause the body to use muscle as fuel. So for the gym goer looking to lose fat while keeping that oh so important fat burning muscle, I recommend inserting some type of interval into your cardio regimen. For the athlete, intervals are paramount to keeping your body a well-rounded machine tobe ready for everything tha is asked of it during your sport. Finally, for the OCRathlete I feel as if this can be a very useful tool to help get you over whatever hump or plateau you may be facing.  The intense nature of this workout with laughable time to rest between sets forces you to push beyond what you thought was possible. So please when you see the short 4-minute workout, be weary, because it may be the best/worst 4-minute workout you have done.

(top picture from, bottom picture from


Jared Renyer

Jared has a B.S. in Fitness & Wellness, as well as acertified personal trainer. As a college athlete he played soccer as well asran track. In recent years Jared has started competing in OCR events and hasbecome one of the strongest members of Team Strength&Speed and qualifiedfor and will be competing in the 30-34 age group for the 2016 OCR WorldChampionships.


Why you should dress like a A**hole in the gym

Posted by Strength & Speed on August 15, 2016 at 11:25 AM

      I typically roll into the gym with a sleeveless shirt, shorts, a hat, headphones in my ears and carrying my gym bag with random accessories. While I think I sport a good enough physique today that warrants a sleeveless shirt, 8 years ago (maybe less), I did not. However, I still encourage dressing the way you want when you go to the gym, because it is your time to work out and who cares what other people think.

     There is a term called the Observer Effect or the Hawthorne Effect. The quick explanation is that when subjects are being watched and they know it, it influences their behavior. The name stems from observers watching workers in Hawthorne Works, a factory in Illinois, and adjusting the lighting conditions to figure out if which provided the maximum level of productivity. Despite lowering lighting, productivity improved, but they ultimately concluded it was a result of being watched and had nothing to do with the lighting.

      If you want to wear a sleeveless shirt eve if your small tank top looks like it is two sizes two big, I say go for it! Everyone has to start somewhere, the fact that you are in the gym working to improve yourself says something. If you are familiar with the story of Arnold Schwarzenegger working on lagging calves, this falls into the same concept. The brief synopsis is Arnold felt his calves were lagging so cut off his sweatpants so his calves were always exposed. This ensured he always worked on his weakness.

     This observer effect can be used to your benefit in the gym. If I know people are watching me in the gym I subconsciously try harder. You may have noticed this effect if you have ever asked a friend to video tape you during a lift. While you do not have to dress like an asshole, dress how you want when you head to the gym and if other people stare, than it will probably only help you out. The same effect can be seen when males are lifting around attractive females (see “The Yoga Pants Efect”;).


Live A Little

Posted by Strength & Speed on August 1, 2016 at 8:45 AM

     “Live a little”, I despise the phrase. It is uttered by people with no ability to plan to put in hard work for a long term goal. It is thrown at me on a monthly basis, sometimes even more. “Here have some .” It varies each time I am offered an unhealthy drink/food, sometimes being as simple as a slice of pizza, other times some dessert, all the way to alcohol or cigars. Sometimes it is an invitation to stay out an extra couple of hours at a social event. After a polite decline to their offer, their inevitable response is “Come on live a little.”

     But my response is the same, “I agree…you live a little.” Instead of wasting your time getting drunk every night and slamming down XL pies from Dominos, you live a little. Set a goal that takes more than 10 minutes to achieve and cannot just be purchased. Work hard for something that requires months or years of successive effort. After a half decade of drinking, partying and eating crappy foods what will they have to show for all their living? An extra 10 lbs? Health problems? A bunch of memories that are blurred by the haze of alcohol? Store purchased items that hold little or no intrinsic value?

     What they fail to understand is that I am living a little, actually that is not right, I am living a lot. The only difference is the ability to delay gratification. By suffering during training I get my prize when I cross that finish line on race day. Sometimes the finish line comes in the form of a high placing but other times it is just performing at a level above what I thought was physically capable. Pleasurable experiences that require no work and can be repeated easily, will quickly lose their level of excitement. Compare that to something that you work hard for that takes months and is very difficult. The contrast and level of enjoyment with the end results can be extreme.

    My living also comes in the form of my projects including Strength & Speed, my articles for Mud Run Guide and my book (soon to be books) on OCR. My living comes in the form of spending time with my family and going on family trips. My living comes in the form of being successful at my job. My living comes in the form of being able to balance all of those things and still be an athlete. So I say again, “You live a little.”

    I understand why people do all those things (drink, smoke, party, eat unhealthy), they are just not for me at this point in my life. Just as I understand why they may not want to train for four months to set a new marathon PR or finish an ultra-Obstacle Course Race. However, every time I see them drinking I do not tell them to live a little and give them a speech on how they are wasting their life not enjoying things. Let’s try to show some respect in the other direction.


Father's Day

Posted by Strength & Speed on June 16, 2016 at 11:45 AM

     I am going to take the opportunity on this Father’s Day to share a personal story and highlight some things. I will start with my dad pit crewing for me at the Brazos Bend 100 mile trail race. 

      During my first 100 miler, my dad was my only member of my pit crew. After running the first 75 miles with relative ease, things started going poorly. I finished the first 75 miles in 14 hours with a mix of run/walk the entire time. I was pretty confident I would hit 100 in under 20 hrs based off my last 25 mile split. Around mile 78 my body did not feel like running anymore, weird I thought, I’ll just walk it out for a little longer than planned and then start running again. Nope, my internal hip muscles basically had hit complete muscle failure. At around mile 80 I told my dad, who a planning on taking a nap while waiting for me to finish, that I needed a pacer.

     My dad in his late 60s proceeded to join me and the trail and begin walking. For the next 8 hours he had to listen to me suffer with each step. Out of all the races I have participated in, I have never been in this bad of a condition. Maybe it was because it was my first 100 miler or maybe because I had just done World’s Toughest Mudder four weeks prior and still was not recovered. Either way, I was in bad shape. In the end, my father continued to pace me often having to slow down because my rate of movement was so slow. I literally made groaning, suffering, whiney noises for the next 8 hours until the race ended.

      After about an hour of walking he asked me if I wanted to stop. I responded with a clear no and that was the last time he brought up the topic. He later told my mom “I should have made him stop”. He seemed to regret the decision not to stop me even more when I had to be wheeled around the airport later that day to make my flight.  I later told him that I had to walk backwards for two days due to my muscles that create forward movement being destroyed, which didn't help his regret. Several days later I was back to normal with no permanent damage but with a shiny new 100 miler belt buckle. Was it the right decision not to ask me to quit again? That is up for debate, but regardless of what he said or did it probably would have ended with me continuing to walk towards the finish line.

     The ability or willingness to pace your child through the night does not make you a good parent, but this is a representation of a lifetime of good parenting. I think good parenting comes from a mix of pushing your child when they need it and giving good advice. However, the most important part, even if your advice is not always perfect, is simply being there. I am lucky to have a father that is always there for me as demonstrated by this one example. As my child grows up, I hope that I can be as good of a father to mine as he was to me.

     Whether your father is always there for you or not, whether you are always for there for your children or unavailable, always work on improving the relationship. I know I will. Happy Father’s Day to everyone!


Time to Give Pro Wrestling a 2nd Chance

Posted by Strength & Speed on May 17, 2016 at 11:50 AM

     Alright, total honesty time. I sometimes watch professional wrestling. I know there is a WWE following as demonstrated by the media giant they have become but I know very few adults who openly admit to it. While you will not catch me religiously watching every episode I like to catch Wrestlemania and one or two pay-per-view events a year.

     I know many people who say “The matches are fixed” or “it is all fake, so what is the point?” Movies are both of those but I do not know anyone who is vehemently opposed to watching movies? Reality TV is also largely scripted but that still sells. So why does wrestling get judged differently? Is it because at one point you thought it was real? Do not deny it…I do not know anyone growing up who immediately identified it as fake. Maybe it is different today with the rise of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), but when I grew up it seemed real to me.

      Why should you give it a second chance? In the two decades since I stopped watching, a lot has changed. There is still some cheesy acting, over the top promos, less than realistic punches and competitors letting their opponents get them into positions that seem preposterous but there is also a lot more. Some of these guys are ridiculous athletes. Reference the strength of Ryback or Mark Henry. Feel free to cite the Olympic Gold Medal won by Kurt Angle or the UFC Championship belt won by Brock Lesnar. Have you seen the high flying tricks of Neville or the Rey Mysterio?

      As someone who runs a small business with no formal training in marketing, watching the WWE grow is simply fascinating study. They went from a couple of pay-per-view events every year to one every month. Plus, they now have two primetime several hour wrestling shows (RAW and Smackdown), plus a Saturday morning NXT wrestling show highlighting new wrestlers. But it gets better, they have their characters integrated into cartoons with the Flintstones, fighting games plus he standard action figures they had when I was growing up. They even expanded into reality shows with Total Divas, attempting to pull in more female fans. If that is not enough they launched their own network so you could literally spend all day watching wrestling and wrestling related programs. I am literally amazed.

     This article has two points. The first is I think making fun of wrestling fans is like making fun of someone for liking movies. They have really done an amazing job in the last two decades, so you may want to check it out before you cite old Ultimate Warrior promos as evidence of bad acting. Second, make sure you check out my favorite wrestler, the Greatest Unsigned Talent Today, The Greek God Papadon (also one of my relatives) ;. While not a member of the WWE wrestling staff, he has been on the show once and was in he movie The Wrestler. Check out his Facebook page, which says when his next match is and tell WWE to miss the only business decision they have failed to see so far (signing The Greek God).


Star Wars Fitness Inspirational Quotes: Part II

Posted by Strength & Speed on May 4, 2016 at 6:45 AM

     If you missed part I, head back and check it out now. We continue with the May the 4th celebration with nine more fitness related Star War quotes.

10. “If you strike me down and I will become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” –Obi Wan Kenobi

Your path to success will have a ton of ups and downs along the way. Although if you die, you are not going to come back as a force powered ghost, this quote does apply to any setbacks you have. If you go through life without failing you will never know what you have to fix to become better. So although no one likes to fail, it is necessary to improve because it helps expose your areas that need improvement.

11. “Control, control, you must learn control.” –Yoda

Whether you are trying to gain muscle, lose fat, lift more weight or become faster, control is important. It could be saying no to that extra piece of cake or simply getting out of bed in the morning to workout. Improving physically is all about control. Dedication is all about going after your goals long after that inspirational moment has passed.

12. “I’m not afraid.” –Luke Skywalker “You will be…you will be.” -Yoda

If getting a training schedule from a personal trainer or book, you should have the opinion of Luke initially and the trainer should have the opinion of Yoda. If you have a training schedule laid out then and nothing in it makes you a little nervous, it is probably not hard enough. The challenging workout, which should be a little scary, is what will produce physical change to help you achieve your objectives.

13. “Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will.” -Yoda

If you are an athlete that is dedicated to competing on a fair playing field without using performance enhancing drugs (PEDs), this is a quote for you. While PEDs are not addicting like other drugs, it is a path to the “dark side”. If you are a serious athlete and considering using PEDs, it will “dominate your destiny.” Like powerlifter Mark Bell said, “I’m not going to go from squatting 800 lbs. to squatting 700 lbs.” While not physically addicting, they will be mentally addicting and start you down a “dark path.”

14. “Your powers are weak old man.” –Darth Vader

Despite Darth Vader having a great quote in the last (“I find your lack of faith disturbing”), his quote on this list is underestimating Obi Wan. Like many people, they use age as an excuse for lack of effort. While your age does make it harder to make physical improvements, most people us this as an excuse instead of just adjusting their training.

15. “Size matters not. Judge me by my size do you.” –Yoda

This quote is pertinent to both big and small athletes. Just because someone is small does not mean they are not strong. Likewise just because someone is big does not necessarily mean they are strong. Bottom line is it is not the size of the athlete but often a combination of numerous factors including training, diet, willingness to suffer and motivation.

16. “You don’t want to sell me death sticks. You want to go home and rethink your life.” –Obi Wan Kenobi

This one is for those that are taking those first steps towards a healthy lifestyle. The first step of physical improvement might be something as obvious as stopping smoking.

17. “Remember concentrate on the moment. Feel, don’t think, use your instincts” –Qui Gon Jin

While during training it is often better to dissociate while running, during competition or performance focusing on your body will yield better results. By focusing on your breathing and how you are feeling at the moment, you can enhance your performance. I usually am hyper focused during a marathon but during those last couple of miles I run by feel and try to empty the tank in order to get everything out of my body that I can for the best time.

18. “Surely you can do better” –Count Dooku

While the line is initially meant as a taunt, it is also a truth. Whenever you think you have done your best, look inside and think if you can do better. Sure it only might be by a couple of seconds or a couple of pounds, but you usually have more in you. Even if that was you best at the time, proper training can result in another leap forward in performance.


That concludes Strength & Speed’s 18 Star Wars fitness quotes. Keep training hard and May the Fourth be with you.


Star Wars Inspirational Quotes: Part I

Posted by Strength & Speed on May 3, 2016 at 6:35 AM

     In honor of May the 4th (May the 4th be with you), I figured I would do a couple of posts about Star Wars and fitness. Although Star Wars is typically not seen as a movie where its characters emphasize physical fitness, they do have some profound quotes. These quotes can provide you with a lot of lessons for physical improvements. Let’s start with the most obvious one so we can get it out of the way:

1. “Do or do not, there is not try.” - Yoda

The point of this quote is believing in yourself. If you go into an event whether it be a 5k, 5 miler, 50k or 50 miler with the belief that you will complete it, your likelihood of success will increase dramatically. Willpower is an incredible tool for athletes and Yoda knows the power of it, which is why he provides this sage advice to Luke.

2. “Never tell me the odds.” -Han Solo

Just like Yoda, Han’s quote is about willpower. When trying to achieve a goal, if you sat down and looked at the odds of achieving that goal it could seem depressing or make it impossible. Han did not want to know the odd of navigating an asteroid field (3720 to 1) and you should not concern yourself with the odds of wanting to achieve your goals if you are serious about putting in the work required to reach that level.

3. “In my experience, there is no such thing as luck.” –Obi Wan Kenobi

This is probably my favorite Star Wars quote that links to fitness. When people say things, “Why can’t I be that lucky” or “Best of luck in your race tomorrow”, it is not about luck. Luck is the product of tons of hard work and putting yourself in the right circumstances. This appears to luck like outsiders but is actually an accumulation of hard work via training, diet and effort. If you are waiting for your “lucky break”, you will be waiting a long time. Instead, make your own luck to achieve your goals.

4. “There’s always a bigger fish.” –Qui Gon Jinn

This quote is about remaining humble. Whether you are the strongest/fastest in your state, in your town, on your block or just in your household, always keep some humility. There is always someone stronger or faster than you just like there is always someone slower or weaker than you trying to reach your level.

5. “Great, kid. Don’t get cocky.” –Han Solo

Despite Han being a force non-believer at first and a scruffy looking nerf herder, he continues to reinforce profound quotes from elsewhere in the Star Wars universe. After Luke destroys a Tie Fighter and is proud of his accomplishment, Han hits him with this gem. Just like the quote from Qui Gon, remain humble even during your periods of success.

6. “I find your lack of faith disturbing.” –Darth Vader

When you set goals and go after them there will be naysayers. Whether your goal involves losing 10 lbs, running 10 miles, losing 100 lbs or running 100 miles, you will run into people who think your goal is impossible. Do not let these negative thoughts and beliefs determine if you can actually achieve your goals, which leads us to…

7. “Your focus determines your reality.” –Qui Gon Jinn

Qui Gon again provides some good wisdom with this quote. If you are focused, it is amazing what results you can achieve. Positive belief combined with focus will help determine your ability to reach new goals.

8. “Stay on target.”

Even the random Rebel Alliance X Wing pilot understands the power of focus. Luke is trying to destroy the Death Star with Tie Fighters on his tail shooting at him while speeding through a trench with laser guns and other objects. Despite all that is going on, the rebel pilot tells look to “Stay on Target”. As you go for your goals, your journey is going to look a lot more like a trench run then an uphill climb. Things will be going wrong frequently, there will be obstacles in your way and it may seem impossible at times, but having a focus can help you reach that exhaust port.

9. “I don’t believe it” –Luke Skywalker “That is why you fail.” –Yoda

Yoda started the list and finishes off the list with another pearl of wisdom. Yoda’s response to Luke drives home the strength of willpower and positive thought. Just like when going for a new PR in a lift, if you do not believe, you will fail before you even step up to the bar.

Check back for part II and May the force (fourth) be with you.


Application Window is Open for the 1st OCR Dev Team

Posted by Strength & Speed on March 9, 2016 at 4:20 PM

     Recently we had a lot of our top athletes get picked up by sponsors that include apparel, supplements and even several members of an OCR Pro Team. While this is not a conflict of interest, the more sponsors one has the harder it becomes to show love to all the people that support you in your athletic endeavors. With several of our members joining one of the three pro teams belonging to a race series that spans multiple states, it has pulled their attention in multiple directions.  This has created a desire for S&S to form a seperate team with a different focus.

     Just as Spartan has announced the competitive wave to bridge the gap between elite and open waves, we would like to announce the founding of the first OCR Developmental Team: Strength & Speed Dev Team. This is a team made of competitive athletes or athletes that run in the elite wave but may not necessarily be reaching the podium. The goal of the developmental team is to help athletes improve whether that be taking athletes from the competitive wave to higher rankings in the competitive wave, move them into the elite wave or finish higher in the elite wave. In order to fill this team, we are now opening an application process. The first six chosen members (three males and three females) will get access to an exclusive group, which will provide them the knowledge to succeed.



   Unlike Pro Teams which often provide larger benefits like free access into races spanning multiple states and other perks, the biggest benefit of this team is access to knowledge for improvement not published elsewhere. Upon entrance into the team you will have small group access to personal trainers, OCR professionals and other sponsored athletes. As part of the developmental team, you will get unprecedented access to knowledge includes training information, workout templates and guidance when applying for sponsorship.

     Additional benefits of the team include name/S&S score on the website, a couple of items of free apparel, marketing support, discounts not available to non-team members (such as discounts to OCR America) and the opportunity to expand you influence in the OCR world. Companies want athletes that not only provide them quality finishing results but also have an outlet for spreading their message. Being a part of Strength & Speed gives you an established platform to spread your desired message to a larger audience rather than trying to build something on your own from the ground up.

     Getting sponsored by a larger company is not an easy task and it requires significant work. The athletes at Strength & Speed have already solved a lot of the challenges associated with this process. If you do not need training advice but just knowledge on how to get sponsored, the developmental team will also help you with that.

     Apply today by filling out the information below and sending it in a private message to the “" target="_blank">Strength & Speed” Facebook page as an attached word document if you are interested. We are not necessarily looking for the best athletes, just those with a strong desire to succeed:


Major Goal for 2016:

Minor Goals for 2016:

Races for 2016:

2015 Race Results:

Race Highlights from 2014 or Earlier:

Social Media Sites (Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/YouTube/etc.):

Other Relevant Information You Think We Should Know:

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