23 July 2013

Why Go Cannibal?

One reason for the slowdown in posts after a flurry last month was because I'm going through all of the old nutrition articles and rewriting them for the new nutrition ebook, which should be out presently.  Additionally, I've been spending a lot of time on new merch for CnP and the new supplements, plus working my day job.  As such, I've been getting out what I can, when I can.  To tide you fuckers over until my next epic post, I thought I'd drop the following on you, which is something I'm working on for the forthcoming corporate CnP (www.chaosandpain.com) website.  Lest you worry, the blog will remain as is, porn-and-gore-filled and generallyawesome.  The new site will feature semi-sanitized articles from the myself and uncensored articles by other authors (Jay Nera being among them), in addition to being a sales and info site for the supplements and new merch (CnP beer mugs and shot glasses, anyone?).  Some of you will find this interesting, and the rest of you can yank the panties out of your cracks, as there will be new shit posted soon, and there's a week-long 2 hour podcast (which I cannot get to upload to Youtube for some reason) that features our new addition, the aforementioned Jay Nera.

Preview of the new site- we're about to go big time.

The Story Behind Chaos and Pain's "Cannibal" Supplement Line

Long ago, at the University of Arizona, Chaos and Pain's founder Jamie Lewis was in the nascence of his writing career, but already deep into his lifelong campaign of anti-authoritarianism and shit-stirring.  It was here that he was enjoined to pen a paper either defending or critiquing the plan detailed in Jonathan Swift's A Modest Proposal, a satire in which Swift suggested that the English begin eating Irish babies to rid them simultaneously of the scourge of Catholicism and the Irish.  At the time, there was strong anti-Catholic sentiment in the strongly Anglican nation, concomitant with a virulent hatred of the Irish, who were considered basically subhuman by the Brits.  True to form, Jamie chose to defend the proposal as an intellectual exercise, and because he knew this would anger his class full of born-again Christians and foaming-at-the-mouth liberals beyond words.  As such, he set to discovering who had been cannibals in the past, and how they fared.

What he discovered shocked him- provided they avoided eating uncooked brains (which all but the people of Papua New Guinea did), cannibal tribes around the world were renown for their strength, size, speed, and ferocity.  Far from being the sickly, backward malcontents of unenlightened lands, many of these peoples were so feared and respected by others that they resisted colonization and the "civilizing" hand of Christian missionaries almost into the modern era.  This, of course, made a defense of "A Modest Proposal" a simple affair, and Jamie enjoyed watching security escort several enthusiastic missionaries from the classroom as he read his paper, the sole defense of cannibalism, aloud.

Cannibalism, he posited, was not merely the purview of the insane or the starved, the afflicted or the deranged.  Instead, cannibalism among primates is a rather common occurrence, as chimpanzees show rather frequently.  Likewise, cannibalism was common amongst Neanderthals and Australopithecines, and this practice has a profoundly positive effect.  The massive influx of protein from prey that was easier to catch and consume contributed to rapid evolution of hominid brains, and reinforced a desire for meat and a concomitant aggressiveness in succeeding generations.  Springing forward into modern humanity, the word "cannibal" was coined by the Greek historian Herodotus.  Prior to the invention of the word, cannibalism was apparently so common that a word to describe the practice of eating human flesh, as opposed to that of other species, simply did not exist.  Much later, sociologists would further define the word by dividing cannibalistic practices into two types- funerary endo-cannibalism, and aggressive gustatory cannibalism.

From what essentially amounted to an act of academic trolling sprang an idea- would human flesh then be the most healthy protein source humans could eat?  It only seemed reasonable that it would be, as it should naturally contain exactly the amino acids and nutrients that the human body would favor, and was famous among cannibals for being the most delicious meat on Earth.  Though the evidence gradually found its way into Jamie's hands, his concept for a "Cannibal Fuel" product seemed a pipe dream, as Jamie had neither the capital nor the necessary manufacturing experience to make it happen.  It wasn't until he met the other half of Chaos and Pain LLC's braintrust, Wayne Banks, that the idea began to solidify as the duo discussed its merits between sets of deadlifts and bench presses.  It was in the gym, then, that Cannibal Fuel and Chaos and Pain LLC sprang into being.

As it happens, protein powders are incredibly expensive to produce and unless the company has the capital to produce massive quantities, not a tremendously lucrative business.  Luckily, however, cannibals around the world found themselves competing with pre-modern humans for resources, land, and calories.  Were they to exist in large numbers today, finding food would be a simple affair- they'd simply find the nearest herd of ridiculously obese people and slaughter them en masse.  There existed few people, however, that resembles beluga whales more than humans, which forced the cannibal tribes to supplement their meat-heavy diets with various herbs to make them faster, stronger, and smarter, so as to facilitate the conquest of neighboring peoples and ensure a steady supply of human flesh.  The use of stimulants by hunters is ubiquitous to improve reaction time, strength, and performance, and foremost among the herbs used in that regard was ephedra.  Common throughout Eurasia, ephedra has been found in every Neanderthal burial, and has been commonly used by tribesmen from Europe to China since as a "performance enhancing drug".  Likewise, tribesmen in Africa have used the coffee bean and the herb khat as a stimulant for generations.  The Maoris used micropiper exelsum as a stimulant on hunts and an aphrodisiac thereafter, and the natives of the Americas used herb ranging from the coca plant to chocolate and western ephedra strains for energy.  Botanicals were also used to aid in everything from sex to sleep, and written records of ancient athletic competitions are replete with mention of athletes using the same herbs hunters and warriors used to help them on the athletic field.

This, then, is why Chaos and Pain's supplements carry the "cannibal" title- in a long line of badasses, we wish to produce the baddest of the bad, and harkens back to the days when the Androphagi dominated the Russian steppes, striking fear into the hearts of their neighbors- people known to be hyper-warlike, overly muscled, insatiably libidinous and wildly bloodthirsty.  These Mad Max psychos bowed before the Androphagi, men "more savage than those of any other race. They neither observe justice, nor are governed, by any laws. The "man-eaters", as the Greeks named them, "were in the habit of drinking out of human skulls, and placing the scalps, with the hair attached, upon their breasts, like so many napkins."  No man or woman was tougher, larger, or more fearsome that the Greeks encountered, and are thus the ideal classical group of maniacs of whom we could think to emulate in the present.

Go forth and conquer, fellow cannibals- we'll supply the num nums.

18 July 2013

There's More To Being A Ninja Warrior Than Owning A Colored Mask And Eating Pizza

Recently, I received an email from a gym owner in which he threw a lot of credit at me for championing high-volume, ultra-heavy training in an America obsessed with 10 minute abs and using beginner lifting programs for years on end.  If, of course, took every ounce of credit for inventing the idea and proceeded to lay claim to the invention of the question mark, the concept of perpetual motion, and having resolved the unified field theory at a picnic when I was twelve.  If you hadn't caught on, that's hyperbole- I only laid claim to the question mark.  In any event, I came to find that my new best friend was in fact far more interesting than your average person, as he competes in strength sports and participates in my favorite spectator sport- Ninja Warrior.  As such, I decided to ask Chaos and Pain's answer to Michael Dudikoff a variety of questions about his training, as getting different perspectives is generally the best way to learn.  Our Michael Dudikoff's name is Nate Aye, and here is the interview:

First, give everyone a little a little background on yourself.  Summarize the book you've already written me, add in whatever you like, but perhaps refrain from repeating the House Of Leaves-style delivery you busted out initially.  There are many reasons I've never recommended a book by Mark Z. Danielewski on CnP, not the least of which is the fact that anyone who's been photographed wearing a fedora should be beheaded on national television.

I'm 28 years old, 5'9'' on a good day and hover around 170-175 lbs. I'll try to keep this narrative relatively short, and I'll elaborate where necessary if you want me to include something. So here it goes:

I graduated high school in 2002, where I was a 4 year varsity wrestler, state placer, and holder of multiple records which still stand to this day, including single season takedowns (238), most tech falls, fastest techfall (1:58) and a few others. I finished my HS career at 135 lbs, where I was a weight cutting jackass, dropping about 15 pounds a week subsisting on naught but skoal and little whatever food wouldn't put me over on the scale.

Just out of curiosity, what was your go-to takedown?  We had a kid on our team in high school who likely was similar to you- a takedown specialist.  He'd win all of his matches by tech fall after taking his opponents down and letting them up over and over.  He grew up playing judo, so his inside trip was pretty much unstoppable.  I, on the other hand, pretty much only used the Russian double.  I was not, however, a particularly good wrestler.  My goal was just to make it to whatever period would give me top and immediately go for the pin after hurting my opponent as much as possible.

Arm drags and duck unders were my bread and butter. But I also made it a point to put on a clinic every time I stepped onto the mat. My goal was not to hurt, but rather to humiliate.
I turned down multiple college offers and decided to join the Marine Corps.There are myriad reasons I joined the military, some personal, but mostly I wanted to test myself and experience the challenge.  I was still 17 years old when I left home and "celebrated" my 18th birthday in bootcamp. I became and 0311/Rifleman and learned how to kill motherfuckers. At this time the invasion in Iraq had not yet kicked off, but rumors were flying and we knew shit was about to go down.

Nate majored in ass-whupping canneries.

Though I have no idea what would possess you to skip scholarships for the Marines, continue with your life story- I appear to be the one turning this shit into House of Leaves this time around.

During my time in the service, I deployed to Iraq and various other parts of the world 3 times. During my 1st deployment, I volunteered for the Scout/Sniper indoc, managed to pass, and spent the next 2 1/2 years with the sniper section. I failed the first time I went to the school and never got a chance to go again, but I was an assistant team leader in my sniper team. Lost some good friends, and a lot of brain cells.

In 2006, on my last deployment to Anbar province, my vehicle was struck by an IED. Thankfully, we all walked away, but I lost consciousness and suffered a class 3 concussion. I believe that rates a purple heart, but my higher-ups were too lazy and I haven't bothered to try and get it corrected. It seems petty compared to the guys who got killed or fucked up.

The operation tempo was really high, and we were carrying loads in excess of 100 pounds in 120 degree heat. Needless to say I withered down to 145 pounds.

Apparently, being a Marine blows.

After I got out of the Marines, I stayed in Cali for a little while, messed around and basically spent the next 6 months doing nothing but training for MMA. A surfer dude I used to roll with introduced me to CrossFit and it was a good match.

To that point, I was doing basically bodypart splits and then a bunch of bodyweight in conjunction with a ton of BJJ and Boxing.

I took a brief hiatus from training in order to deploy to Baghdad as a protective security specialist with a small company. They were fucked up and the situation was incredibly dangerous, as this was at the height of sectarian violence in Baghdad and just before the troop surge. After a few short months, I got the hell out of there. That's a story best told over beers.

Anyway, mid 2007, wasn't sure what I was going to do with my life, started working as a vet tech, found out my wife was pregnant with our first son. I fought a few times in MMA, still doing CrossFit, then I got recalled back into the military. A Marine I served with was working with a more reputable company overseas and promptly got me job there. So I found myself back in Baghdad in 2008, just after my son was born.

I started training my friends and designing post-partum workouts for my wife, and found I had a knack for it.

In 09 I opened a CF affiliate. I had my last fight in fall of 09. My training was not where it should have been and I got another pretty good concussion. I had bed spins for 3 nights and had to sleep sitting up. Said fuck that, and decided I wanted to get bigger and stronger.

Did some competitive CrossFit and qualified for the regionals. I placed 17th out of 130+ competitors, but the vibe just wasn't for me. As Kenny Powers put it, I play real sports, I'm not trying to be the best at exercise. So I started doing less conditioning and more strength work and keeping bodyweight in the mix, and got better. In 2011 I did my first strongman comp and finished dead last. I did ok on some events, as I was able to use good o-lift techniq and I taught myself how to continental clean.

Last year, I dropped my affiliation with CrossFit, and rebranded my gym as "Golden Age Strength Club". Basically, I wanted to get back to my roots and my true passion for training, as MMA was out of the picture, and I wanted to pay homage to the greats of yesteryear.

Now, I compete a couple times a year in strongman, which now has a 175 lb. class and I've been on American Ninja Warrior the last 2 years.

As much as I'd love to hear about you shooting assholes in the Mideast with bullets dipped in pig fat, I suppose most everyone else cares about your lifting.  Thus, hit us with some of your best lifts, in the gym and in competition.

Gym Lifts
Squat- 395 X 3, 405 X 1
1-Arm Barbell Press- 135 X 1
Bench- 290 ( i don't do it often, shitty shoulder from wrestling)
Pullups- 39 from a dead hang on a fat bar.
Strict Press- 185 lb
Tire Flip- 1000 lb
Log Press- 250 lb log press
Axle Clean and Press- 255 lb

Competition Lifts
Circus Dumbbell Press- 130 lb
Push Press- 275 lb (state record)
Clean and Jerk- 275 lb (state record)
Deadlift- 500
Axle Deadlift- 500 X 6 (pick was just below knees)

Ah well, he's halfway to Klokov's weights.

Whew- 275 C&J is a state record?  I think we've just identified the reason why we haven't medaled much in olympic lifting in the last 60 years.  What's your training like?  I assume you're a high volume guy, but how do you break up your training for such disparate goals?

Good question, I follow a loose template and kind of modify it based on my schedule, how I'm feeling and what I want to do that day. But my basic breakdown is:

Monday- Squat and press, I usually go in weeks of 5s, 3s, 2s, and 1s. I aim for 3-5 sets sometimes more, sometimes less. Then I'll do some rows of some kind and lighter presses.

Tuesday and Thursday- Bodyweight, which I rotate between strength, volume, and skill or a blend of these. For example, on a volume day, I'll put a weight vest on and do push/pull, every grip variation you can imagine and do small sets, like 10-20 sets of 5-20 reps. On a strength day, I'll do heavier weighted stuff, and on skill day, I'll try to practice things like press into handstand, levers, and ring work. Sometimes I'll do combos and throw in odd lifts. Like yesterday, I did 1-arm deads and handstands.

Wed- I deadlift and bench or press. I try to get a good variety in pressing different implements and pulling different implements. Might be trap bar, deficits, sumo, farmers handles, whatever. Same with bench. I like more reps on bench and fewer on pulls. Then I'll shrug, row, do pullups and dips.

Friday- Squat with a specialty bar or onto a box and pressing with odd objects. More bodyweight, and arms.

Saturday- Either strongman or ninja warrior depending on the season.

Sidenotes- I like to do some plyos, and a lot of my extra work comes from just playing around climbing and just fucking about in the gym.

Kipping is occasionally acceptable, provided there are booty shorts involved.

Do you kip your pullups in training?  If so, why?  If not, why not?

No I don't kip (anymore). Here's the deal, kipping is an important skill. Especially if you are interested in Ninja Warrior, however, lets think about what a kip really is: it's what gymnasts do to GET ON THE APPARATUS and do REAL GYMNASTICS!!!!!! Show me one real gymnast who reps out kipping pullups. You can't. Why? Because it's fucking stupid, that's why. Most people lack the requisite strength in the shoulder girdle to make kipping safe and effective. If you can't heave your bulk over the bar with out flailing about like some kind of inner city krumper, you're asking for double SLAP tears. I've seen it happen, thankfully never to any of my clients, but due to my proximity to a major airport, I used to get a lot of visiting crossfitters, you get the idea.

I completely agree on the kipping pullups- they're an awesome way to tear a rotator cuff, and that's about it.  They would seem to be useful for Ninja Warrior, though, as a method for easily climbing obstacles.  Would you agree?

Allow me to elucidate. I don't think including kipping pullups is useful, namely because of the shoulder risks. However, when I train people to do things like salmon ladder or muscle ups, we learn the proper technique of kipping. Specifically, the kipping swing. As soon as someone is competent in the swing, then we start doing the real stuff, like clapping pullups, muscle ups, and salmon ladder. That's not to say that when I'm hitting high numbers of pullups, a little bit of kipping sneaks in there to hit a few more reps, that's not a big deal. Bottom line, get the strength first, because if the strength is there, your shoulders are protected.

Living proof that Jesus hates squatting.

Your squat number is the same as Rich Froning's I think, which is pretty much a disgrace, especially against your other numbers.  What the fuck is with Crossfit and back squatting?  It seems like Crossfit affiliation is tantamount to AIDS of the cancer for one's back squat.  Any idea why?  Do you just not train it that hard?

Ah, I knew that was coming. In my defense, that was the last time I legitimately "maxed" back in March I believe. Since then a couple weeks ago, I did 425X2 with a safety squat bar off a box....either way, I know my squat is nothing to thump my chest about...yet. There are a number of reasons, which will probably shed light on the situation. For myself personally, I've suffered numerous setbacks due to minor injuries. Nothing serious, but enough to pretty much derail me on basically a quarterly basis for the last 2 years. Rolled ankles, knee tweaks, hip stuff. So for a while I was making one step forward and 2 steps back. I started lifting young, but it was always and after thought. I played football for a few years in high school, but I fucking hated it. That, and I also wrestled year-round. I probably averaged around 120 matches per year in high school, and when I wasn't wrestling, I was working with my dad installing hardwood floors in order to pay for my wrestling, or screwing around. That being said, I originally started training with barbells for strength at the end of 2010 and was doing 3X5 linear progressions on and off.

To give a broader answer though, with CrossFit as a whole, if you look at "main page" programming, they are only doing 3-4 heavy lifting sessions per month. As a CrossFit affiliate owner, you have the freedom to design the program however you want to, most people just shit in their palm and smear it all over a whiteboard. Problem is, you get a lot of chicks as clients in a  CF gym, they avid heavy lifting like the plague, and if you make too many of your workouts heavy lifting, they leave in droves and you go broke....finally, I stopped giving a fuck and the ones who stuck with it got great results.

A couple of supporting albeit "random" thoughts:

-much of my physical activity over the last 15 years was endurance related. Especially in the military. If and when I did get to lift, it was mostly bodybuilding style shit workouts. I never, ever, trained legs. Why the fuck would I want to after putting in dozens of miles per week on mountainous terrain with 50-100 pounds on my back? Then we ran a lot and did calisthenics.

Your comments on the squat make sense, in a rather depressing romcom sort of way.  You're like the Jason Segel of the strength world. Hopefully, we can avoid any singing about how misunderstood Dracula is. Back before I realized how ridiculous running is, I aped Bruce Lee and ran daily.  As I would only run 3 miles at a dead sprint when I did run, however, I never really ran into much of a problem with squatting.  Squatting was a once a week thing I did because that's what you're supposed to do, I guess.  I honestly cannot recall a week in which I didn't squat, though, going back to high school.  Even when injured, I was still squatting in the smith machine, on the body master machine, or with a safety bar.  I'd imagine that would account for much of my ridiculous squat- consistency goes a long ways.

Given the state of your squat and your litany of excuses for it, haha, have you given any thought to competing in push pull meets? 

Sure, I love competing. I might not be setting any records any time soon, but I still consider myself "green" in terms of strength sports. I'm only 28 years old, I've only been legitimately lifting heavy for a couple of years. I'm just getting started.

I love that Kenny Powers quote.  Do you have any plans to compete in Crossfit in the future?  The trend seems to be headed in the direction of stronger athletes rather than better conditioned- Jason Khalipa springs to mind immediately.  It'd seem your strongman training would put you in better stead for the Games, at this point.

No, I don't have plans to compete in CrossFit. I have a lot of criticisms about it, but I try to not to  be douchey about it. However, I think I have a unique perspective having been a part of it for as long as I was. I consider myself a reformed Crossfitter. I am grateful for the experience, mainly because were it not for CrossFit, I never would have been exposed to powerlifting or strongman, I'd probably still be doing "Arnold's Arm Blaster" or some shit....

On the other hand, I really don't like the vibe from competitive CrossFit. I came from wrestling, where you beat the fuck out of people, then the military where you train to kill people, then MMA where again, you beat the fuck out of people. Competitive CrossFit is like the adult version of peewee sports where "everyone is a winner". I won't take anything away from the athleticism of games level competitors. Those guys/girls work there asses off. But if you look at it, even at the games level, it's amplified mediocrity. The strongest/best Crossfitters are basically an amalgamation of the shittiest athletes from a multitude of sports and skills.

While I think you are right, at the actual CrossFit games, there are much heavier events than typically seen in CrossFit programming, it's still a prolonged experience. Last year, it kicked off with a mini-tri, then the USMC O-course (but they didn't even do the rope climb. WTF?

Then they had some 205 power cleans, and a few other heavy relative to CrossFitters.

What's your diet like, and does it differ when you're training more for NW and less for strongman and powerlifting?

30 bananas a day bitch! 100% raw vegan.

Sike! I guess the best way to sum it up is paleo-ish, generally low carb, high fat, and a lot of protein. I guess you could say I throw in some intermittent fasting. Basically, I eat my face off on the weekend and have 1-2 absolutely epic cheats. On Mondays, I usually fast, mainly because it's my busiest day of the week and I just drink water and coffee so I can focus on work. A few days a week, I'll have a nice big breakfast, 4-5 eggs, bacon, and potatoes cooked in butter and bacon grease. Then it's mostly meat, veggies every couple of days, and some fruit here and there. I also do 1-2 shakes of 50g whey and water. If I'm feeling beat down, or I trained particularly hard, I'll go whey and whole milk. If I had to guess macros it would average between 150-250g pro, even on days I eat potatoes, I'm under 100g carbs, and then a shit ton of fat. I'll eat 1/4 cup of natural peanut butter and mix in a teaspoon or so of jelly and eat that for a snack as an example.

The only thing I really change is my intake of dairy products. When I'm doing the Ninja Warrior stuff, the elbows and biceps tendons take a beating, and keeping dairy out allows me to keep a little bit leaner and control inflammation a little more. Also, I'll carb-up a little bit more when I'm focussed more on lifting. By that I mean, I'll grab a sandwhich here and there, a bowl of oatmeal, or drink some watered down gatorade the night before I lift. Other than that, I basically just try to stick with real food, get 2-3 squares a day, and fill in the gaps with shakes and extra fat. Oh and I take fish oil.

Sais have been on every single Christmas list I have ever given anyone.

Gotcha.  Now, onto a topic that doesn't make people break into hives (both CrossFit and dieting seem to annoy the fuck out of people lately)- I've had a ton of people ask me why I've not done Ninja Warrior, as I love the shit out of it and my bodyweight strength is excellent.  What they fail to realize, however, is that you need to be flexible, and I'm of the opinion that only gymnasts can touch their toes.  Would you agree with that statement?

Not really. If you can sit in the 3rd world squat position and lengthen your stride both forward and laterally, you're good to go. Aside from something like the spider jump, which statistically speaking, is a non-issue as so few competitors ever even make it that far. If you can jump over a mud puddle, you're good to go.

Nate jumping a mud puddle.

I'd imagine if you cut off both of my legs and then severed them at the knees, then glued it all back together in the third world squat, I might be able to hold that position for 3 to five seconds.  I can jump a puddle, on a good day, without pulling anything.  Perhaps there is Ninja Warrior in my future.  Should I decide to go that route, how would you recommend I go about training for it?  Do lots of climbing?

Nah, you should probably just give up. You wouldn't make it past the quintuple steps...In all seriousness, I'm a geek for training and technique, I have a tendency for obsessing over certain things, and a subsequent knack for being able to observe and dissect and apply whatever it is to my own purposes. The first time I got on the show, I did no specific training for it, as I found out about the tryouts, put a submission video together, and drove to Dallas for last year's regional in the space of 2 weeks.

If you dig around, you'll notice that the courses follow a certain pattern. If you understand the pattern, you know that regardless of the obstacle there are only a few basic skills you need to get good at in order to be prepared for whatever is in front of you. It basically boils down to balance, jumping, hanging/climbing, and the mental game.

I still want to be a ninja when I grow up, however.

I wasn't actually being serious about Ninja Warrior- I pull a calf every time I sprint, and would probably tear a hamstring on the first obstacle.  Additionally, I don't give much of a shit about technique on anything- brute strength and a ridiculous hatred of losing is how I win shit.  I was actually attempting to get your opinion on how anyone would go about training for Ninja Warrior, if they were so inclined.  Were I to program for it, I'd likely limit heavy training to two days a week and focus the rest of the time on jumping and climbing- box jumps, long jumps, jumps to a hang, etc, then just throw my ass up a rock wall as many times as possible for a couple of hours.

Come on man! Here's my quick and dirty: I approach it similar to the way many strongman competitors do, where they focus on basics and usually do event training maybe once per week. I lift consistently 3 days, do just bodyweight and some plyos the other 2 and train on obstacles 1-2 times. During the "pre-season" if you will, I lift M,W,F, Bodyweight/plyo/recovery activities T/Th, and train obstacles Friday night and Saturday morning.

Realizing that most people don't have access to a training course, I would recommend hitting up open gyms at gymnastics facilities, "free-running", or at the very least, familiarizing yourself with either elementary gymnastics skills and/or some "primal movement" type shit, like Erwan Le Corre. I often incorporate gymnastics drills from my 5 year old son's gymnastics class, and you would be surprised at just how bad many people suck at moving. Simply put, be able to do anything on a playground a 7 year old can.

I have never in my life heard of "primal movements" or Erwan LeCorre.  Both sound suspiciously French and ridiculous-even-without-the-metrosexuality-drenched-in-mayonnaise on the other.  As I find the French and mayo equally disgusting, we shall just avoid that topic altogether and move on.  

It seems like grip strength is really the most important factor in Ninja Warrior, and would play a very large part in success in strongman.  Most of the contestants on the new season of American Ninja Warrior seem to be failing on the nunchuks, which is pure grip strength.  I would think rope pullups, rope climbing, and lots of pinch grip work, in addition to mountain climber pullups (finger tip pullups) would put you in prime position to kick ass in NW, and would also translate nicely to strongman.  Would you agree?  How big are your forearms, and how do you train them and grip?

I would generally agree with that. In regards to the nunchuks, I don't think grip strength is nearly as much of a factor as the coordination and body position when making the transition. As an aside, according to first hand accounts of people who were on the course that night, there is a lot of mist in the air at Venice, and moisture on the obstacles was a big problem.

To address the point, grip is important, but not the end-all. Again, if you look at it statistically, you have about a %0.0004 chance of making it to stage 3 where grip becomes really important. Rather than focussing on grip, the focus should be on being able to keep the arms bent when hanging on an obstacle. On any uppor body oriented obstacle, people fall for one of 2 reasons. Either a technical error/flub, or they were just too weak and their arms straighten out. Once the arms straighten out, you're done. By climbing, deadlifting, rowing, pulling, swinging, etc. Grip is a byproduct of being strong.

To summarize, you need to be able to climb and transition from a controlled kip into a swing or vice versa, and muscle up, while fatigued and under pressure.

I don't really do any grip specific training. I'm of the opinion that grip training is for people who are too fat and lazy to do anything else. I will however do pullups on a fat bar, and stuff like that, and I'll mess around from time to time. But I don't dedicate specific work to training grip.

I just measured my forearms: right 14 3/4" left 14 1/4 "

Meanwhile, at Diesel Crew's headquarters.

Someone over at Diesel Crew just went Scanners on the deal and had their head explode.   Luckily, it didn't get on any of their strongman trophies, as from what I hear they don't have any.  I enjoy needling those guys for no reason at all, as they appear to be a very, very touchy lot.  I would tend to agree with you- grip specialists seem to suck at everything else.  Grip afficianados tend to do remarkably well at sports in which they have no aptitude, however, just because they can hang on to shit most people couldn't.  For instance, I've seen wrestlers with decent athleticism and unreal grip strength ruin kids on the mat, without much skill in wrestling whatsoever.  Grip is an awesome add-on, then, but hardly a good primary focus.

Hahaha, that Diesel crew line had me rolling. As I alluded to previously, I think grip is a result of work rather than something you attain through specific practice. But hey, if you want to be the plate pinch or captain of crush world champion, go for it. I just dislike the message targeted to weak ass beginners that you need to do grip training to accomplish whatever.

I paid my way through wrestling by swinging a fucking hammer and shoveling shit. If you want the secret to a vice-like grip, get your ass in front of home depot at 4am and become a day laborer....

I know what you're talking about, the wrestlers who suck, but are just the meanest motherfuckers ever.

Parkour- you think it's cool until you remember that it's French and involves running.

While we're waiting for the first angry missive in the comments over my Diesel Crew jokes, I might as well ask a final Ninja Warrior question- I've noticed that the parkour guys kick ass on NW until they really need strength, and for whatever reason those motherfuckers seem to think strength training is the devil.  Any idea why?  One would think that they'd see the benefit strength has on competitions like the Ultimate Banzuke and NW due to the fact that 150 lb fishermen with 18" forearms tended to win NW all the time in the past.

Very astute observation. I honestly have no idea. There are a few guys who are starting to see the light, but from my experience, it's pretty much ignorance combined with the mentality of Traceurs (practitioners of Parkour) and freerunners. A lot of these guys are pretty spazzy ADD types who can't sit still for more than 5 seconds and feel the need to jump and climb on everything they can. Most don't train in gyms at all, save for the few dedicated Parkour facilities around the country. A lot of these guys think that there is no carryover and that they will be negatively impacted  by extra weight. It's the athletic male version of "I don't want to become too bulky".

I've met Makoto Nagano, and I'll tell you what, I've never seen a thicker set of lats on anyone before. His arms are huge too, and he smokes like a chimney. Dude is a beast.

And there you have it- a 500 lb back squat is unnecessary (but probably couldn't hurt) in CrossFit and Ninja Warrior, dudes who do Parkour are actually French feminist drag kings, Japanese fisherman are hard motherfuckers, and being a Marine gives you a cancer patient physique.  If you want to check out Nate's ANW submission video, which has a hodge-podge of training footage, here it is:

If you, like I, are curious about how awesome a gym with Ninja Warrior training apparatus would be, check it out here and his new site with training advice and question answering (without all of the mocking of an Ask the Asshole) is here.  Up next will be the newest installment of Chaos and Bang, with our new cohost Jay Nera, and then back to titties and scat porn and training.  In case you're jonesing for titties, here you are:

11 July 2013

No Fap? More Like No Fucking Way.

It's no secret that I've long espoused the myriad benefits of jerking off as a method for unchaining your inner beast so you can go out and dominate heavy things in particular and life in general.  Perhaps that's due to the fact that I'm trying to justify my formative years, much of which were spent like a juvenile spider monkey, abusing myself like I was a one man bdsm show and my cock was my gimp.  Perhaps, however, it's because I know what I'm fucking talking about, and given the fact that I've actually done my research, it's highly likely that both reasons are equally valid.  To clarify a bit more, however, my interest in the promotion of masturbation as a useful endocrinological activity stems in large part from the fact that I learned, at a rather heavy cost, exactly what the abstention from masturbation accomplishes, and it likely does not take much inductive reasoning to come to the conclusion that it worked out about as well for me as Aaron Hernandez's imitation of Harvey Keitel in Pulp Fiction worked for him.

Apparently, Aaron Hernandez didn't care that he didn't see the sign about who he could store in his house, either.

One summer in college I somehow found myself in a conversation with a geriatric at my gym who still boasted veins on his biceps that rivaled my own, currently.  At the time I was still in heavy pursuit of what my friends and I had dubbed "the Arnold veins", and so I naturally assumed any man with the requisite muscularity and leanness to boast them under skin ensconced in liver spots likely knew what the fuck he was talking about.  As such, when he told me that his strength and virility came from abstention from both sex and masturbation, as spilling his seed was a waste of his vitality, I soaked the information up like a Bounty paper towel and resolved to quit cold turkey.  This was not easy- I've masturbated two or more times a day since I was in second grade, and falling asleep without jerking off was then and is now about as likely as Verne Troyer successfully dunking on a basketball hoop without the use of a jetpack.  Nevertheless, I gave it hell, and for about a year I jerked off to completion somewhere between twice and four times a month.  Proud of my "self control", I waited patiently for Brodin to bless me with the gains for which I prayed nightly.  They did not arrive, but what did was a horrifying case of erectile dysfunction when I attempted to have sex that was as breathtaking as it was infuriating.  It wasn't that I couldn't get it up- my erections became penile strobe lights, flashing on and off without rhyme or reason and not allowing either party to cum.  In a panic, I scheduled a doctor's appointment with a urologist, who proceeded to laugh out loud when I explained what I'd done (or not done, as the case may be) for the last year.  That's right- a panicky 23 year old was nearly laughed out of a medical doctor's office, so stupid was his mindset over the last year.  After assuring me my dick would stop randomly playing dead during sex if I followed his advice, he sent me on my way with "Buy some Penthouses (not Playboys) and masturbate as often as possible, and no fewer than three times a day" scribbled in chicken scratch on a prescription sheet.

You can see, then, why I wish to expose the people who would have you believe that abstention from masturbation and frequent sex as the lying, no-good, rotten, four-flushing, low-life, snake-licking, dirt-eating, inbred, overstuffed, ignorant, blood-sucking, brainless, dickless, hopeless, heartless, fat-assed, bug-eyed, stiff-legged, spotty-lipped, worm-headed sacks of monkey shit that they are.  Not only is their reasoning flawed- they misunderstand science worse than Young Earthers, lack competitive spirit, and are (to borrow a phrase I generally find ridiculous but is perfect for this) beta as fuck.

It should come as no surprise to you that the progenitor of the anti-masturbation/No Fap movement on Reddit is a closeted Christian homosexual who stopped jacking it so Jesus wouldn't toss his ass into the universe's largest barbecue.  That falls right in line with the historical anti-masturbation movements, all of which were motivated by Christians who were terrified that their terrible Jewish overlord in the sky would suddenly decide one of the half-million contradicting minor rules and forgettable platitudes he bleated over the last two thousand years would suddenly be the most important of them all.  Nevermind the Ten Commandments, these assholes were scouring every inch of their holy book of Hebrew fables to vilify every fucking activity they possibly could.  As such, masturbators in New Haven, Connecticut were eligible for the death penalty if caught, and masturbation was thought to lead to illness and death in puritanical circles for a couple of hundred years.  Like the anti-masturbatory psychotics of the modern era, those of bygone days had all sorts of beliefs about the evils of masturbation with no relation to reality whatsoever.  For instance, they though masturbation caused:
  • vomiting
  • nausea
  • weakening of the organs of breathing
  • coughing
  • hoarseness
  • paralysis
  • weakening of the organ of generation to the point of impotence
  • lack of libido
  • back pain
  • disorders of the eye and ear
  • total diminution of bodily powers
  • paleness
  • thinness
  • pimples on the face
  • decline of intellectual powers
  • loss of memory
  • attacks of rage
  • madness
  • idiocy
  • epilepsy
  • fever
  • suicide
  • disturbances of the stomach and digestion
  • loss of appetite or ravenous hunger [ed- this is one of my personal faves, as it pretty much covers the whole range of appetites]
  • a perceptible reduction of strength, of memory and even of reason
  • blurred vision
  • all the nervous disorders
  • all types of gout and rheumatism
  • weakening of the organs of generation
  • blood in the urine
  • disturbance of the appetite
  • headaches
  • such as affection of the liver and lungs
  • neuralgia
  • rheumatism
  • affection of the spine
  • diseased kidneys
  • cancerous tumors

The meta-psychotic inventor of Corn Flakes, John Harvey Kellogg, routinely burned off broads' clitorises and sewed guys' foreskins shut to prevent masturbation, which is an insight into exactly how wrong-headed and psychotic anti-masturbation campaigners are.  You might also find it interesting that no two anti-masturbation campaigners identified the same deleterious effects from masturbation.  This is, of course, because like the modern proponents of masturbation abstention, their reasoning is basically a giant bowl of lies drowned in pants-shitting insanity gravy and topped with little sprinkles of misplaced religious zealotry.  There are likely castratos with more fact-based opinions on masturbatory health effects than these idiots, and the Voynich Manuscript provides a far better example of well-reasoned argumentation despite the fact it's written in a gibberish language.  I would sooner entrust Edward Scissorhands with the care of an infant than I would a no-fap psychotic with computer access.  In short, taking the words of a no-fapper as truth is tantamount to hanging on every word of a lecture on feminism delivered by a Muslim man who punctuates the end of every sentence by punching a pregnant infidel in the stomach and beats his wife every ten minutes to improve the circulation in his hands.

What?  His hands were cold.

In the past, I've stated strongly that test levels are raised when one ejaculates frequently.  As there are studies that back this and others that refute it, I've found myself defending myself against eunuchs who are barely literate enough to frame their rebuttals in human English.  Hopefully, however, I've found the Fat Man to their Nagasaki- at no point in any of the studies testing testosterone levels in relation to orgasm do the scientists involved take note of free testosterone or sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG).  The contentions of the no-fappers are that refraining from masturbation will raise your total testosterone levels to unprecedented levels and thereby result in extreme hypertrophy and Ron Jeremy-like sexual prowess.  Though a quick glance at the profile of any poster in a no fap forum will immediately disabuse you of the veracity of their claims, science comes to the rescue to encourage everyone to grab their cocks and jerk like they're trying to rip-start a particularly recalcitrant lawnmower.   The No Fap movement is entirely based (at least scientifically based) on a Chinese study that showed a 46% one-day increase in total testosterone after seven days of abstention.

Nope, baby- we've gotta wait another six days before we bang, because I don't understand basic endocrinology and Jesus and stuff.

The problem here, is that it's free testosterone, not total testosterone, that is the hormone that really matters.  Additionally, total testosterone has been shown not to be a reliable indicator for free testosterone in most men (Anawalt).  For those of you who are as unaware of the importance of free testosterone and SHGB in your bodies, bear this in mind- only about 2% of your total testosterone is free testosterone. That means that only 2% of the testosterone in your body is biologically active, and only 2% of your body's testosterone is available to help in the muscle-building process.  Additionally, it's free testosterone and SHBG levels that are significantly correlated with orgasmic function and/or erectile function (Ahn).  High levels of free test correlate with positive erectile function, whereas high levels of SHBG correlate strongly with erectile dysfunction- total testosterone doesn't factor into the equation.  Thus, if you have higher total levels of testosterone but increased SHGB, you should theoretically have the sexual function and hypertrophy results of... any poster on a no fap forum, which is to say, none of either.  Science again has my back here, as a study of epileptics placed on anti-convulsant medication found that although total testosterone and luteinizing hormone were increased, the concurrent rise in SHGB and fall of free test led to diminished sex drive and erectile dysfunction (Toone).


I am, of course, simply speculating on the free testosterone/total testosterone/SHGB idea, but I wanted to point out that studies showing increased total testosterone are completely useless for showing the efficacy of infrequent masturbation.  What is plainly evident to scientists, however, is that a lack of intercourse makes your dick throw in the towel like it was a fat white tomato can in the ring with Mike Tyson fresh out of prison.  In other words, "the risk of erectile dysfunction was inversely related to the frequency of intercourse" (Koskimäki).  Another study showed that masturbation was an excellent method for resolving erectile dysfunction (Sue).  As erectile dysfuntion is inversely correlated with free testosterone levels, it stands to reason that frequent sexual activity may well raise free testosterone levels.   Even if the eunuchs are correct, however, and they do enjoy a one day spike in their free testosterone after seven days of abstinence, they're potentially sacrificing a day of increased hypertrophy a week for a lifetime of broke-dick cuckolding at the hands of a woman who happens to like guys with working dicks (that would be about 93% of them, i.e. all non-lesbians).  If that's your thing, fine- strap on a chastity belt and rock out with your cock locked- I will caution you, however, that neither anecdotal nor scientific evidence supports the idea that cuckolds are jacked.

I might be killing my gym gains, according to no-fappers, but I'm improving my gentleman sausage gains considerably.

The very fact that I felt it necessary to spend time researching this topic turns my stomach- the no fap premise is so counter-intuitive and asinine that its existence defies logical explanation.  The fact that they feel comfortable discussing their newfound sexual prowess after a period of abstention is even more ridiculous- it's like that obnoxious fat bitch at the gym who feels confident giving advice about dieting to everyone around her because she was allegedly able to see her abs once.  While dating a person of whom no one had ever heard, who lived out of state.  And another dimension.  You know- that dimension in which people with 30% body fat can see their abs and idiots who fuck once fortnightly break off nuts like porn stars and make chicks cum so hard it looks like they've got Parkinsons, Bell's Palsy, and epilepsy.  In summary, proponents of the no fap movement are lying sacks of weak sauce, scrawny, socially retarded, Christian fundamentalist dogshit with no understanding of science and even less understanding of human sexuality.
As Genghis Khan said "he who nuts the most and has the biggest pile of enemy skulls wins."

Ahn HS, Park CM, Lee SW.  The clinical relevance of sex hormone levels and sexual activity in the ageing male.  BJU Int. 2002 Apr;89(6):526-30.

Anawalt BD, Hotaling JM, Walsh TJ, Matsumoto AM.  Performance of total testosterone measurement to predict free testosterone for the biochemical evaluation of male hypogonadism.  J Urol. 2012 Apr;187(4):1369-73.

John Harvey Kellogg.  Wikipedia.  Web.  11 Jul 2013.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Harvey_Kellogg#Drastic_measures

Koskimäki J, Shiri R, Tammela T, Häkkinen J, Hakama M, Auvinen A.  Regular intercourse protects against erectile dysfunction: Tampere Aging Male Urologic Study.  Am J Med. 2008 Jul;121(7):592-6.

Sue D.  Masturbation in the in vivo treatment of impotence.  J Behav Ther Exp Psychrot.  1978 Mar;9(1):15-16.

Toone BK, Wheeler M, Nanjee M, Fenwick P, Grant R.  Sex hormones, sexual activity and plasma anticonvulsant levels in male epileptics.  J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 1983;46:824-826

08 July 2013

Why "Your Head Is Fucking Tiny" Is The Greatest Compliment You'll Ever Receive, Part 2

Every time I've had a picture taken of myself in the last couple of years, I've heard from my friends that I have a tiny head.  Not Beetlejuice tiny, but damn small in comparison to my body.  Most of that, it seems was attributed to the size of my neck, which while not superhuman certainly isn't the pipe cleaner most guys seem to have holding up their heads.  I've already outlined the myriad ways I've built my neck over the years, but it stands to reason one might need a bit more variety than I offer.  Unlike most people, I'm perfectly content to eat the same two things day in and day out, do the same lifts (by and large) and endlessly repeat the same Groundhog Day-esque life of wake, fuck, work, train, fuck, watch Top Gear UK, fuck, sleep day in and day out for years- clearly, variety is not the spice of my life.

As an FYI, pegging is a bad idea if done before your workout on squat day.

Clearly, the first place to start when looking at big necks would be wrestlers.  Known since time immemorial for having necks that more closely resembled tree trunks than normal human soft tissue anatomy, wrestlers focused on neck training out of necessity- it's hard to win a match when your opponent can smash your teeth out on the ground by leaning on you a bit.  The Greeks were known for their heavy musculature and obsession with training to physical perfection, so there's little point in investigating their methods- when they weren't lifting or wrestling, they were stomping around Europe wearing helmets that weighed almost twenty pounds.  As such, they'd basically have a neck as thick as their thigh or their head would fall the fuck off every other Wednesday.  In the interest of finding out what guys who weren't literally forced to rock huge necks, we have to look to India, current land of the 11" neck and the 44" waistline on a 150lb man.

As this pic of tiger Daula indicates, Indian wrestlers seem to have such giant heads and bodies that even a 20 inch neck looks "normal" on them.

The greatest of all Indian wrestlers is pretty much universally acknowledged to be the Great Gama.  Gama ran a mile every day with a 120 lb stone ring around his neck, then did his traditional bridging movements to build his neck further.  While Gama can't be used as an example of a typical pehlwan due to the fact that no one ever watched his workout from start to finish (due to their extreme length- Gama trained harder and longer than anyone had the patience to watch), his neck isn't terribly atypical of what you'd see in pehlwan at the height of Indian wrestling preeminence (Alter).  As a general rule, however, Indian wrestlers performed dhakuli, in which you begin in a kneeling position in a wrestling pit. From there, you lean forward and place your head on the ground, and then shift your weight to your head, driving it into the ground. At that point, you do a quick headstand, then twist so you land on your knees facing the opposite direction.  This builds massive neck strength, as well as balance.  To further build their necks, Indian wrestlers also performed the basic neck bridge I outlined in the previous entry.  Rather than add weight, however, Indian wrestlers typically added resistance by arching and then rolling from the back of their head to their forehead, switching from a back to a front arch, stepping over one leg so that they rotate in a circle around the axis of their head.

While all of that is well and good, most of us really don't give a fuck what people who wipe their ass with their left hand have to say about much of anything, much less lifting.  That said, I decided to get some neck training tips from a man who lives in a slightly more first world section of the worst of the third world.  Terence Mitchell is the owner and proprietor of Off The Grid Athletic in an unpronounceable city in South Africa.  Interestingly, Terence's gym is one of the nicest I've ever seen, something you'd not expect on the "dark continent".  Putting it to full use, Terence has taken time out of his busy deadlifting and overhead pressing schedule (Terence has the worst mental barrier to a 605 deadlift anyone's ever seen and has been training deads like a maniac as a result) to do a shitload of neck, and is currently rocking a 19" neck at a bodyweight of 200 lbs. Given that his neck's incredibly large for someone so light, I asked him for a little insight into his neck workouts.  As it happens, his approach is pretty similar to my own- just like Nick Manning in a porn shoot, we hit it hard, heavy, and with a shitload of volume.  Terence's favorite two neck exercises are neck harness extensions and weighted neck crunches, which he has been doing twice a day, six days a week of late.  Consistency is key to success in his opinion, as are high reps and extremely strict form- he busts out 100 reps of each exercise in each neck workout using 25kg for sets of 50 reps on the neck harness and a 45lb plate for 50 reps on plate raises. He worked up to that weight and volume, so start with a weight you can get for 50 reps and go up from there.

Piri Piri Plate Crunches
Don't turn these into some "weird crunchie bullshit", Terence cautions- that shit will get nothing done.  Instead, make each rep slow and controlled without any stomach or arm contraction to move the weight.

Cape Dutch Neck Harness Extensions
The key on extensions is to "squash the bug" on your upper chest with your chin, then get a full contraction and contemplate the ceiling for a moment.  

If Terence's small neck apartheid isn't to your liking, you've still got a shitload of weighted neck training options.  You could try my ultra-simple option with an ab strap and a cable crossover or lat pulldown machine, or try one of Steve Helmicki's options, which as you are about to see are more numerous than lesions on the inside of a Transnistrian prostitute's pussy.  Bear in mind that while I fixed glaring errors and formatting, these are his words, not mine (Helmicki, pp. 14-19)
Lids- Using a flat bench, attach jump stretch band around the pad so there is adequate tension when lying down and placing the band on the forehead while lying flat on your back.  Reverse and lying on your stomach attach the band to the back of the head.
Kettlebell Teeth Swings Back to Front- Using daisy chains or any strong nylon strap that can be cinched around the kettlebell with the opposite end in between the teeth, swing the kettlebell from bottom (hanging between the legs to an upward position fully extending the neck.
Kettlebell Teeth Swing Side to Side- Place daisy chain or nylon end that is affixed to a kettlebell inbetween teeth and in a bent over position swing the kettlebell in a controlled manner from side to side.(chin moving in the direction of the shoulder)

Neck Harness with Kettlebell- Attach kettlebell to harness and perform extension and flexion.
Neck Harness Plate Loaded- Attach plates to harness or loading pin and perform extension and flexion.
Neck Harness with Bands Attached to Feet- Place band under toes for back and under heels for front. Perform extension and flexion. Be sure to adequately secure the band under the shoe to prevent slippage.
Neck Harness with Bands attached parallel- Attach the band on a power rack or very secure object at face level and perform extension and flexion.
Neck Harness with Cable- Attach cable from above, below or parallel and perform extension and flexion.
Isometrics-place head against power rack, partner leg or any stationary object and push maximally for ten seconds front, back and sides of head.
Face Plate Raises- Place plate on forehead/nose area and extend head past the edge of a flat bench lower and raise in a controlled manner steadying the plate with the trainee’s hands but allowing the neck muscles to perform the work.
Neck Harness Squat- Place weight between the legs and attach it to the neck harness with enough slack that when the weight is on the ground the trainee can achieve an arched squat position. Squat the weight with the neck dead stop for the prescribed number of repetitions.
Neck Harness Sled Pull (front and back)- Keeping your neck upright and straight drag the sled for prescribed distance.
Neck Harness Sled Neck Extension/Flexion- The entire movement of the sled should be performed with neck power only (front and back) moving the sled for the prescribed number of repetitions.
Medicine Ball on the Wall (Front)-Using your forehead and standing in front of a wall
with the medicine ball placed against your forehead and the wall move your head up and down while keeping the medicine ball affixed to the wall.
Side to Side-Using your forehead and standing in front of a wall with the medicine ball placed against your forehead and the wall move your head from side to side as if you were looking over your shoulder.
Back-Place the medicine ball against the back of the head and the wall and move the head up and down with the medicine ball staying in continuous contact.
Olympic Bar Face Raises- Using a flat bench, extend head over benches edge and place the bar on the forehead utilizing the hands just enough to stabilize the bar but allowing the neck to perform the raising and lowering.
Dumbbell Face Raises-Using a flat bench, extend head over benches edge and place the dumbbell on the forehead utilizingthe hands just enough to stabilize the dumbbell but allowing the neck to do the raising and the lowering.
Partner Assisted Isometrics-Use partner’s hands to create maximum resistance on front, back and sides of head.
Or your partner's back.
Neck Bridges Front and Back on Ground- Perform wrestlers bridge with forehead on ground and back of the head on the ground.
Weighted Neck Bridges- Perform wrestlers bridge with forehead on ground and back of the head on the ground. Have your training partner stabilize the plate on the front or back of trainee.
Bridge on Bench Pullovers- On a flat bench, bridge facing up and while in the bridged position perform pullovers keeping the head in the extended bridge position.
Bridge on Ground Pullovers- Lying back on the ground, bridge facing up and while in the bridged position perform pullovers keeping the head in the extended bridge position.
Neck Rolls Side to Side on Exercise Ball- Feet on the ground or elevated on a bench place forehead on exercise ball and rotate neck side to side moving chin towards shoulder.
Neck Bridges on Bosu- With feet on ground place head on Bosu and perform wrestler’s bridge off of Bosu both face down and face up.
Dog with the Bone Bands- Place daisy chain or nylon strap that is affixed to jump stretch band in between teeth and rotate head side to side simulating looking over your shoulder.
Dog with the Bone Bungee- Place daisy chain or nylon strap that is affixed to bungee cord in between teeth and rotate head side to side simulating looking over your shoulder.
Neck Harness 30’s Front/Back- Perform ten reps of the first third, ten reps of the last third and ten complete reps both front and back.
New Twist on 21’s Neck Harness- Perform 7 reps of the first third, 7 reps of the last third and 7 full reps front and back.
Neck Harness Negative Front/Back- Lower 20% greater weight than can be lifted throughout the complete range of motion in ten seconds controlled.
Neck Harness with Band Suspended Kettlebell- Loop mini-band doubled through kettlebell handle and affix the other ends of the band to the harness. Do front and back in a controlled manner. The kettlebell vibrates up and down somewhat during the movement.
Handstand Football Helmet Neck Rolls with Drop Shrug- Using a football helmet assume handstand bridge position and perform bridge movement followed by a shoulder shrug towards the head while inverted.
Neck Harness Good Mornings with kettlebell/band attached underneath feet- With a band affixed under toes or kettlebell attached in front to harness bend at knees while keeping legs straight keeping arms in a simulated bar grabbing position or at the sides and stand erect and lower while maintaining proper arch.
Neck Harness Squats: Kettlebell/Bands- Kettlebell in front attached to harness or bands attached under toes squat up and down keeping the neck flexed and upright. Be sure to dead stop each repetition to avoid bouncing.
Neck Harness Sit-up- On a calf/ham/glute machine assume a straight legged sit-up position and affix kettlebell (tension) behind the trainees head. Perform a controlled sit-up with the neck flexed and straight. The raising should start with a dead stop and rise in a controlled manner to avoid neck strain and the potential for the kettlebell to have hard contact with the low back.
Suspended Band Olympic Bar Neck Extensions- Loop and choke band on top of power rack on each side. Place Olympic bar through loops and add resistance. Lay flat on bench with head hanging over edge. Remove bar in bench press style and with the assistance of spotters place on forehead and lower and raise neck throughout the full range of motion using hands just to support the bar.

Nautilus/Machine Four Way Neck-Perform front/backand both sides in a controlled manner without using leg drive.
Chin/Throat Gripper Helper- Place gripper helper open end between chin and clavicle. Support the closed end with one hand and compress the gripper helper by driving chin into upper chest.
Overhead Bungee Football Helmet Neck Extension- Attach bungees to power rack above the head (preferably low chinning bar) and attach other end to football face mask. Perform extension and flexion work.
Ballistic Exercises- These are advanced movements for individuals who utilize their head and neck in a ballistic manner. Soccer players, combat fighters who employ the head butt. Use caution and never train at full force.
Medicine Ball Forehead Throws- Lying flat on a bench with a football helmet on allow the cage to support a light medicine ball and with finger support on the ball only, drive the head from the lowest portion of the movement and fire the ball into the air with neck drive. Catch and repeat.
 Yes, this is apparently a neck training method.
Heavy Bag Head Butt- Wearing a football helmet or boxing headgear perform head butts on a water bag from front, back and sides at no greater than 50% velocity. Ease into the
movement and only utilize after substantial neck training and development.
Clearly, those are not all solid gold- they range in utility from pretty cool to insane to worthless, but they give you an idea of the amount of variation and creativity you can employ in your neck training if you're feeling a little froggy and want to try something weird to get your neck bigger.  If you're still unconvinced you need to train your neck, consider the fact that bodybuilder Reg Park would have called you a bitch for your lack of neck girth- "The bodybuilder finds he must pay attention to the neck and shoulder girdle if he hopes to attain as near perfect proportions as his type of structure will allow. You'll grant that a man with a massive development of every group but those of the neck and traps, would look out of proportion on a posing platform"(Drucker).  That's right- you'd even look the bitch on a bodybuilding stage if you have a tiny neck.  

Gina Carano has a bigger neck than you.  Get after it.

Alter, Joseph.  Gama the world champion.  Iron Game History.  Oct 1995.  Web. 5 Jul 2013.  http://library.la84.org/SportsLibrary/IGH/IGH0402/IGH0402c.pdf

Alter, Joseph.  The Wrestler's Body: Identity and Ideology in North India.  California Scholarship Online.  12 May 1992.

Drucker, Rob.  Reg Park on neck and trap training.  Muscles of Iron.  Web.  9 Jul 2013.  http://www.musclesofiron.com/articles/reg-park-on-neck-training/

Helmicki, Steven.  Art of the Neck.  Vol. 1.  2008.  PDF.