Brian Mahoney was my first weight training coach. I came to him in 1996 as a, pizza faced, 16 year old wanting to bodybuild. He was in his ?70s?, had a patch over one eye, a cane, and was in the early stages of dementia. The gym was in the basement of a gymnastic studio, dusty, rusty, filled with barbells, dumbbells, olympic bumper plates, and scruffy looking chaps wearing ripped and threadbare clothes. There was even a big bowl of chalk. Brian had a background as an Olympic Lifting coach and took a dim view of bodybuilding. Yet he gave me a simple routine and gave me a love of lifting. Below are some of the best things I learnt from him:-
- Serious lifters squat and pick stuff up off the floor and put it above their head
- Take three breathes before squatting, and three after. This will strengthen the muscles that expand the ribcage, making the chest appear bigger - even at rest, they also build the trapezius muscles.
- Carry a notebook. Write down what I do in the gym. Use that to remember what i did last workout, and beat it, and see what i did in previous years and work out what works for me.
My first routine was 3 set of 10:-
- Back of the Neck Press
- Power cleans
- Bench press
- Barbell rows
- Bicep curls
- Tricep extensions (with dumbbell)
- Leg Curls
- Leg Extensions
- Back 'hyper' extensions
- Calf raises