Lockdown Lifting Routine: Closed Schools Offer The Perfect Time To Make Strong Bodies and Strong Minds

I have noticed another trend over the last few weeks with the global quarantines due to Coronavirus/COVID-19. People are working out at home much more due to closed gyms. Of course, this is one area where me and my Tribe are definitely feeling the struggle as well. However, as with work, schooling and extra food, I have built-in redundancy and a back-up plan just in case.

My home gym was called the Iron Temple before the days of the internet, back during Bill Clinton’s first term and a booming economy. It’s the barbell set that changed my life and took me from being a chubby kid and adult to always being someone that at least looked like I lifted. I want my kids to know the latter portion and fall in love with the steel like their father has most of his life. 

Carl Lanore of Super Human Radio would always say that, “Muscle is metabolic currency for when we get older.” One, I have found that to be very true. Two, I want my kids to start building up that account right now. 

My equipment:

– Power cage w/Chin-up bar

– Set of Power stands

– Over 700 lbs. Of steel plates

– Two adjustable dumbbells ( Powerblocks 5-45lbs) 

– Olympic barbell

– Trap Bar

– Triceps Bar

– Bench

– Stability Ball

– Numerous attachment

– Heavy Bag

– …and a Arnold Arm Blaster!

As you can see, we can make it do what it do in our garage, and with a closed gym, that’s exactly what we are doing. 

I know how to train my kids because my career in the fitness field started with training children up to senior citizens. But by far, it was those kids that had the biggest impact on my life. I have told the story often, it was some of those homeschool kids that gave me the idea to homeschool! That said, I have held numerous certifications that did not teach me a tenth of what I learned from the old Ironman magazines. I even held the coveted National Strength and Conditioning’s CSCS certification after graduating college. But it was a certification called the International Association of Resistance Training (IART) and mentoring from my former professor that gave me a heart to train kids. So if I could train other people’s athletes, how could I not train those in my own home?

I have had the pleasure of working out with every single one of my children at one time or another, and I can’t wait to put it down on my grandchildren as well! Lexi-Lex still hits the steel periodically and you can read her story HERE. Now I train with Big Homie and he is 15 years old and with Boney, and she is 13 years old. Both, in terms of lifting experience, are at an intermediate level. I know longer need to watch over every squat, deadlift or bench press set, as their form is better than most in any gym (though that’s not saying much) and it is a matter of coaching them up, with less emphasis needed as we go on technique. 

Our current workout is called “Lockdown Lifting”. It is a bit of a separation from our traditional gym routine since there is no need to fight for the power rack. In this routine, we just go back to the good old basics now, and here is the routine they are doing:

The Tribe will be lifting every other day, and I can’t wait to see how their lifting totals jump. Currently, Boney’s one-rep max was 200 lbs. on the trap bar deadlift and Big Homie is at 200 lbs. as well on the same lift. So yes, she’s that strong! Her older brother is struggling to shake her as she continues to hang with him. 

So what about you? Are your kids training with you at home? If not, whatever equipment you have, involve them in your routine. I know, the gym is often our get-a-way time from home and work life, but why not seize this opportunity? Trust me, in a few years, if that, they will be gone and you will have the gym and your time all to yourself again. Secondly, your kids, like in many other areas, will develop their love for taking care of the only body they will ever have from you. As I remind them often, I am not training your body and mind for today, I am building your body and body for tomorrow. 

So stay tuned. I will certainly keep you posted on their progress and if you have any questions on how to get a routine set up for your kids, let me know in the comments section below!


Exercise Your Flexibility And Stretch For Freedom Part II: Now Is The Time For Your Trial Run and “Social Distancing”


In my previous post, I started discussing ways that you can begin to free up some of your life, and begin homeschooling. This post is an update to my original article, but I definitely think it deserves an update in the midst of the Coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak. So today, I’d like to touch on some easy best practices that you could implement if you:

  • are in a situation where your child must remain in school due to your work-life or because the other parent is not in agreement with homeschooling when students are called to return to school
  • you want to try doing what you can, but are not ready to make the full commitment at this point

Now, the first action I want you to take, again, is to look inwardly. Continue reading “Exercise Your Flexibility And Stretch For Freedom Part II: Now Is The Time For Your Trial Run and “Social Distancing””

My Experience In The Iron Temple

A two and a half years ago I decided I wanted to workout with my Dad at the gym. Not because I liked to workout, but because I wanted bigger biceps and I wanted to lose some body fat. I would occasionally go to the gym with him, but he would work me so hard it didn’t make working out fun. When we moved out to Arizona, my family and I were writing our goals for the next year, and I decided I wanted to get in shape.

I have made great improvements since the first day I walked into the gym, which my Dad calls the Iron Temple. When I went to the gym the first day, I went in with specific goals, but after a year my goals changed and I focused more on my muscle growth then my body fat. I now like to flex my biceps and calfs to see the muscles pop out. My best improvement by far is the Leg Press, I have gone from 90 lbs to 360 lbs. The pain has now become tolerable, and sometimes I welcome it. My Dad has helped a lot in making me not quit because there are days where I just don’t feel like moving. Mayoclinic.org says that exercising can improve your mood, boosts energy, promotes better sleep, and if you join a group or go with friends can be fun and social. About two years ago my mom and I went to two group workouts with some friends. I liked one class and my mom liked the other so we were usually split. Most of the time in the middle of the class I would want to rest or quit but I felt an obligation to keep going and being the youngest in the class, I didn’t want the older people to see me give up.  So being in a group can really help with your motivation.

When most people think of working out they think of a very painful and time-consuming activity, but it doesn’t have to be. If you like keeping track of your improvements then you can keep track of the amount of weight you use. If you like getting rewards you can set goals for yourself. Like everytime you workout you can have some chocolate milk or a piece of candy. Working out doesn’t have to be boring, just find ways to make it fun and comfortable for you.