Did I just accidentally hit all of my goals I set? A guest post by Rob Sugama


It's January 2015, and I just stepped out of a goal setting seminar.
(side note: Geoff was the one speaking, and set off the whole year for me)
The picture displayed is all of the gym goals I wanted to hit for the year.
I listed all of my weak movements, and goals for the year.

  • 400# Deadlift
  • 225# Bench press
  • 200# Clean + Jerk
  • 135# Snatch
  • 300# Back squat
  • 180# Strict (Military/Shoulder) press
  • 30 Double unders in a row.

I started with the snatch and overhead squats, on my own following a linear progression.
Originally I planned on working on 2 movements for 3-4 months. Sounds doable right?
Turns out real life happens. It threw a wrench in consistent training.

  • A Crossfit competition in late January,
  • A 10k in February
  • Crossfit Open in March
  • Warrior dash in April
  • A 10k in May
  • A 5K fun run in June
  • Spartan Race in July

From January to July I hit exactly 0 goals.  Throughout I was discouraged, and wandering.

In mid July Geoff posted a Powerlifting competition on facebook that was happening in October.
I thought to myself, hmmm....this is a good way to hit some of these goals, and not have my year be a complete wash.

Early on in the training, Geoff suggested I sacrifice some training days to just lift and focus on a program. I implemented a new mobility drill for warmup and each session made slight adjustments to my lifts and it created a snowball effect. All the numbers went through the roof!
After 3 months:

  • Back squat 265# ---> (300# goal) ---> 405# (+140)  
  • Strict Press 170# ---> (180# goal) ---> 195# (+25)    
  • Deadlift      325# ---> (400# goal) ---> 370# (+45)    

I am more than happy with all goals + gains (bro) I achieved and I'm ok with the ones I didn't achieve this year.

The lessons learned:
1. Find help when trying to achieve your goals. (a coach)
2. Find a group of peers who will go through the grind with you (whether in person in workout sessions, or online, sharing progress). It can push you further than you would by yourself. Its another avenue for help.
3. I should have set only 1 or 2 goals, get on a program and set a date. (going into a competition really helps set a deadline) In retrospect, it was too many goals for me at one time. 
4. Really focus! Previously I did each lift once a week, but progress came when I hit lifts 2-3 times per week! 
5. Mobility 10-15 min a day helped in recovery + gains (bro) believe it or not.

It's now January 2016, and after my strength program:
My front squat (5 rep max) went up from 155# to 230# (+75), and just cleaned 205# when I haven't done a heavy clean since March.

I have no doubt I actually could hit ALL of the goals I set one year ago, right now.
Did I just accidentally hit all of my goals I set? Hmmm....
What a weird side effect to strength training. Who knew it was transferable?

Rob