Excruciating pain woke up Harry TheBicepsFlexKilla in the middle of a sizzling summer night. The suffering was incredibly intense. Harry felt as if the Grim Reaper was laughing out loud while drilling a hole in his poor human head. The barbarous sensation was spreading through his lower teeth too. It felt like somebody was tightening his jaw with a large metal vise. Harry couldn’t breathe properly either because his chest was gradually dwindling under the pressure of something really heavy.
Harry grabbed his head and tried to get up by flexing his abs as hard as possible. He had the strength to open only one of his eyes. Thereupon a street light stabbed Harry in the same eye. He failed to get up and sat in the middle of the bed for a few minutes, waiting for the pain decrease. The change of position shifted the blood balance in Harry’s head. This increased his suffering even more. He tried to say “What the fuck,” but his throat had already reported bankruptcy. This is when Harry was forced to ask himself the painful but logical question: “Am I sick?” This only added fuel to Harry’s suffering because tomorrow was a PR squat day, and he didn’t want to miss it for the world. He had trained many weeks for this day. Skipping such an important workout was not an option. Even the Grim Reaper wasn’t offering a convincing argument.
Harry mobilized himself and went to the medicine corner of his small one-bedroom apartment. There were only painkillers and anti-inflammatory creams which Harry had bought to mute his nagging knee pain caused by frequent squatting. He had nothing for colds or infections. It was time to visit the med shop. He put on his winter jacket from 8th grade even though it was summer and went to the local pharmacy which was supposedly working 24/7.
10 minutes later Harry was standing in front of a small cage designed specifically for nocturnal clients of the drug store. “I guess most people who come here at night are drunks and low life losers. It makes sense to keep yourself protected,” thought Harry.
5 minutes later he was still sitting there, taking a bath in his own liquid production. Harry looked like a total junky due to his pale face and thin ectomorph frame.
There was a small light inside the pharmacy, but nobody was paying attention to him. A series of painful shivers all over his body forced him to look through the small square window. The situation was terribly simple: a female pharmacist with red hair and another male pharmacist were about to test the elasticity of the condoms sold at the place. “Those guys are so irresponsible. I am here dying while they are training reproduction during working hours,” said Harry to himself.
He knocked on the window with the heavy duty carabiner holding his key chain. He almost cracked the window before getting a reaction from the fuckers. The redhead looked at Harry and jumped out of the sexual position that she had previously assumed with so much passion. Then the lovers covered their faces and turned off the lights completely. This was their way of saying, “Get lost, junky!” The unfortunate experience complicated the plan of Harry even more. He was not only sick beyond belief but also unable to buy medical supplies of any kind.
On his way back home, Harry saw a non-stop shop for alcohol and cigarettes. Since his throat was already burning, he decided to buy a strong whiskey – a trick that his grandfather had taught him. He paid the seller (a low IQ woman with poorly engineered teeth) without saying a word and returned to his apartment. He drank some whiskey, left the bottle on the ground at arm’s length and went to bed.
Sleeping felt like mission impossible. The pain was keeping him awake even though he was exhausted. “What am I going to do now? I have to rest. I really need that PR,” thought Harry while looking at his phone – it was already 4 in the morning.
Harry gave up after half an hour. He grabbed the bottle of whiskey, put on his coat and launched the old and noisy computer running a pirated version of Windows 7.
Harry went straight to the popular training site www.lowbarsquats.com and started going through the posts of the high ranked members there. He was looking for information on how to train when you are sick. During his research, he was drinking whiskey drop by drop. He loved the way the liquid was burning his throat. A sonorous “ahhhh” followed the end of every sip. Harry felt like a real man from a Western movie.
After a while, Harry found a post made by a guy nicknamed HamburgerDestructo. It was entitled “Testing Your Squat Faith or How I Squatted 500lbs” and contained the following wisdom:
To become a world class squatter, you need to acquire an alpha mindset and a strong squat faith. This is my secret to squatting 500lbs low bar style with a 10-inch belt at the light bodyweight of 350lbs.
Below are a few scenarios designed to test your squat faith and mindset. Underneath each example, I give you the proper reaction that a squat champion MUST have when dealing with similar issues.
1.A 7-year-old girl does 26 pull-ups in front you.
Proper reaction: Cool, but how much can she squat?
2.“I lost 50lbs and can now see my abs. My blood work is better too,” says a friend.
Proper reaction: Cool, but how much can you squat?
3.“I graduated from Harvard”, says another friend.
Proper reaction: Cool, but how much did that diploma add to your squat?
4.“I broke my leg,” says a dog on the street.
Proper reaction: Cool, but how much can you squat?
5.“I won the lottery,” says another friend.
Proper reaction: Cool, but money can’t buy squat numbers.
6.“I have three months more to live”, says a friend.
Proper reaction: Cool. Use Smolov to get your squat up.
If your reaction to the situations above is different, don’t ever expect to be a word class squatter like me. Squat heavy or die trying.
After reading this heart touching letter from an old squat master, Harry’s pain started to disappear, and he began accumulating energy for the epic squat session that was only a few hours away. He drank a little more whiskey, started the radio at low volume and went to bed. Luckily, he was able to sleep for 2 full hours.
By 10 o’clock Harry was already in the gym, getting ready to destroy the weights. He was wearing his lucky red shoes, a pair of brown pants which his dad had bought him from Canada 6 years ago and an olive green T-shirt with a squirrel on it saying: “Protect your nuts.” Harry loved this message.
The hardcore gym of Harry, which consisted primarily of homemade devices, was deserted during this time of the day. There was only one guy besides the owner and Harry – a middle-aged man with a massive upper body who looked like a wannabe Dorian Yates. His dress code was as follows: XXL tank top, bodybuilding sweatpants, blue bandana and old-school basketball shoes. The guy was training his back on the pulley machines and listening to mainstream gospel coming straight out of his iPhone covered by a camouflage casing. He looked determined and wasn’t paying attention to his surroundings. Just like Harry, he was there to destroy the weights. “Perfect. I can concentrate,” thought Harry after analyzing the conditions.
The bar was loaded with Harry’s work set. He had a thick powerlifting leather belt around his waist and chalk on his back. The weight was 220lbs/100kg and had to be lifted for 3 sets of 5 according to the beginner program that Harry had found on lowbarsquats.com.
Harry got under the bar and smoked the first set, although the last two reps were grinders. He knew that getting 2 more sets with that weight was going to be tough but decided to give it a try anyway. During his rest periods, he was sitting on a wooden school chair right next to the squat rack. Most of the time he was contemplating a picture of 8 times Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman squatting 10 plates per side. “I am only squatting two plates per side. This guy is doing 5 times more. It can’t be that difficult. I will complete all reps,” thought Harry.
Time for set two. Harry got under the bar, flexed his back and unracked the weight. 1st rep – easy; 2nd rep – easy; 3rd rep – easy hard. Harry knew that the 4th rep was going to be brutal, but the post of HamburgerDestructo flashed before his eyes. He bent his knees with a combination of passion, anger, and fear of the unknown that only real iron warriors are familiar with. He got up to about midpoint, and then the bar transformed into a car.
Harry was pushing as hard as possible, but the weight was not moving at all. He stood in that position for about 10 seconds. The tension was so strong that blood mixed with secretion started coming out of his nose. Harry felt the blood accumulating on top of his lips. He liked the taste because it made him feel like a real man.
The whole time he was squinting like a professional bodybuilder flexing on stage. 3 seconds later, he got up somehow. The effort was accompanied by an extreme barbarian scream which got the attention of the Dorian Yates wannabe. The guy turned around and stood motionless for a few seconds. He saw a skinny boy covered in blood getting pinned by a heavy barbell on his back. “Is this guy trying to do a barbell seppuku,” thought the wannabe while adjusting his bandana.
Meanwhile, Harry was wondering whether he should go for another rep. He was crazy that day and decided to go all in. He bent his knees once again, hit depth, bounced out of the bottom, pushed a little and then immediately gave up. The barbell hit the safety pins and shook the power rack. The crash sounded like a giant bell.
Harry collapsed on the floor. The intensity of the fluorescent lamp above his head made him feel like he was in the white tunnel of life or death. Most cells in his body were regretting their existence and wanted their money back. His nose was still bleeding steadily, and the label on his T-shirt was almost completely covered in red. Ironically, the only readable word left from the original message was “nuts”.