Posts Tagged ‘DIY’

I decided that I was spending WAY too much money on supplements.  Because supplements are supposed to be SUPPLEMENTAL to what I am already consuming I thought it was a waste of money to pay for the Big Name Brands with their fancy Proprietary Blends and what not.  I decided to try to create my own personal Pre and Post workout supplements.  I buy ingredients in bulk.  My last bill was around $140.00.  This included ingredients for both the pre and post workout stuff.  The amount of ingredients that I bought should supply enough material for around 3 months of training (1-2 times a day, 5-6t times a week).  The equates to around $1.50 a day or $45 a month.  I was spending $100-150 a month on the Big Name Brands. I tried to keep it simple and easy.  I researched what a lot of the Big Name Brands used for ingredients in their supplements and tried to replicate it as closely as I could. What I found was that most pre and post workout supplements contained roughly the same ingredients as other pre and post workout supplements.  Here are the main ingredients:


  1. Caffeine
  2. BCAAs
  3. Beta Alanine
  4. Creatine
  5. Flavoring


  1. Whey Protein
  2. BCAAs
  3. Creatine
  4. Flavoring

These along with a few other ingredients (glutamine, vitamin c, etc) make up the bulk of most pre and post workout supplements.  I decided to go to BulkSupplements.Com to see how cheap (but good) of ingredients I could get.  After I placed my order (I actually ordered through Amazon so I could get 2 day free shipping so I could get it faster) I figured out how much of each ingredient to use to get me to the average amount that most other supplements used.  Here is what I came up with:


  1. Green Coffee Bean – 1/8 tsp = ~212mg of Caffeine
  2. BCAAs (2:1:1) – 3 tsp = ~5.3g
  3. Beta Alanine – 1/2 tsp = ~2.3g
  4. Creatine Monohydrate (Micronized) – 1 tsp = ~5g
  5. Great Value (Wal-mart brand) Sugar free-Low calorie Pink Lemonade Drink Mix – 1/2 packet = 1/2 tsp = 5 cal, o carbs 15mg Potassium, and flavoring to cover up the other stuff.


  1. Whey Protein Isolate – 2 Tbsp = ~30g
  2. BCAAs (2:1:1) – 3 tsp = ~5.3g (yes, I know I probably didn’t need to double up on the BCAAs)
  3. Creatine Monohydrate (Micronized) – 1/2 tsp = ~2.5g (yes, I know I probably don’t need much more than 5g of Creatine a day)
  4. Gatorade Powder – 1 scoop/12 oz = 80 cal, 21g carbs, and is good flavoring.

I poured the powders into (better)sealable containers and labeled them.  I measure them out each time.

If any of my readers have other ideas or a better way/cheaper way, etc. let me know.  I am open to trying anything.  I have been using my DIY supplements for a few weeks and I think they do help with my pre-workout energy and post-workout muscle soreness.



Week: 1

Date: Friday 6/24/16

Time: 12:30 pm

Location: Heavy Hammer Gym

Training Partner: Nick Bennigsdorf

Working Sets:

High Bar Squat - 355x3x3/fail, 6/6/6 reps, -1 (really hard today)

Wide Grip Bench Press – 155x2x1/2 Mondays reps, 6/6 reps, 1 rating

One Arm DB Row – 75x2x3/fail, 12/12 reps

BB Upright Row - 90x2x3/fail, 12/12 reps

Crunches – bodyweightx3x3/fail, 20/20 reps


Preacher Curl/French Press superset – 25/75x3x3/fail, 12/12/12 reps

DIY Wrist Roller – 45x3

Calf Raises - Bodyweightx9x10

Daily "Selfie":


Crusaders: Bash at the Barefoot 2007 Cut-off.  The was a high school reunion type of party I went to almost 10 years ago. Flip-flops...

Back felt tight, but after a few sets of squats it started to loosen up.  It was a bit sore the whole time, but manageable. Some of the movements each day are starting to get hard while others are still really easy. I am not sure how the program will auto regulate this, but I trust it and the great staff at Renaissance Periodization. 

Here is a link to the video of my training on my YouTube channel:
Heavy Hammer Gym - Hypertrophy Mesocycle: Week 1: 6/24/16

I have become a HUGE fan of the Do-It-Yourself stuff lately.  I have taken it upon myself to try to upgrade and outfit the Heavy Hammer Gym with as many DIY projects that I can.  My latest endeavor resulted in a pretty nice product.  I made Deadlift Blocks.  Here is what you need to know:

  1. Here is a great article from EliteFTS explaining some benefits of partial range of motion deadlifting: Partial Movement Training For The Deadlift / Elite FTS
  2. You can make this a DIY project, but if you don’t think you are up to it there are a lot of choices out there for purchasing deadlift blocks such as: Rogue 15 Wood Jerk Block PairRogue Medium Metal Pulling Blocks, or DC Blocks – Set of 18.
  3. List of materials used. (you can make them to whatever dimensions you think will work for you and your space/needs; this list will make 2 blocks(because you need 2 blocks to do it right))
    1. 8 – 4×4 cut to 15″ lengths (I actually used 2×4’s because I couldn’t cut the thicker wood)
    2. 2 – 3/4″ plywood cut to 15″ squares
    3. 2 – 1/2″ rubber matting cut to 15″ squares ( I used a very nice welcome mat for mine, just flipped it upside down; people tend to use horse stall mats)
    4. 4 – 1×2 cut to 15″ length (so weights don’t roll off the top of the block)
    5. 2 1/2 ” or 3″ screws
    6. EXTRA: Wood Glue (I actually used industrial strength so it will hold up longer)

Pretty easy to put together.  Used 4-4×4’s on the bottom, screw them together (use wood glue too, maybe, I did), screw (wood glue) plywood to top of 4×4’s, screw (wood glue) rubber mat to top of plywood, screw (wood glue) 2- 1×2’s to top of mat on either side.  Be generous with screws (wood glue) to make sure it can handle the HUGE weights you will be using on it.


Hope you like this DIY project as much as I have.  I have used them multiple times now with 400+ lbs and they haven’t moved/given out at all. Check back from time to time for more DIY Gym Projects.

Week: 1

Date: Wednesday 6/22/16

Time: 10:30 am

Location: Heavy Hammer Gym

Training Partner: N/A

Working Sets:

Overhead Press – 145x5x3/fail, 9/9/8/8/8 reps, 0 rating

Underhand EZ Bar Row – 125x2x3/fail, 12/12 reps

DB Lateral Raise – 20x2x3/fail, 12/10 reps

Figure 4 Crunches – bodyweightx3x3/fail, 20/20 reps


EZ Bar Curl/Overhead Machine Ext superset – 75/50x3x3/fail, 12/12/12 reps

DIY Wrist Roller – 45x3

Calf Raises - bodyweightx9x10

Daily "Selfie":


Fear No Evil Cut-off (Matt 28:20/Deut 31:6, "Be Strong and of good courage; Do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go".  Flip-Flops...

Training felt great today.  Shoulders were a little sore from yesterday but I managed to complete all reps/sets required for the day.  I am really starting to get into this new training style.  I know it will get harder the next couple weeks as intensity and volume change, but hopefully my body will be ready for the adaptation.

Here is a link to the video of my training on my YouTube channel:
Heavy Hammer Gym - Hypertrophy Mesocycle: Week 1: 6/22/16

After a long hiatus from blogging I have decided to return to the world of digital journaling. (thats basically what my blog is) I have begun a new training program supplied by Renaissance Periodization.  It will include a 15 week Hypertrophy Block, a 12-16 week Strength Block, and a 4 week Peaking Block before my next competition.  I just started week 1/workout 1 today.  Check out the blog entitled Hypertrophy Block 6/20/16 if you want to see what it included. I will try to do a better job next time discussing my feelings (like a social justice warrior/triggered person) next time on how I think that particular training session went.  I will also resume my book reviews and product reviews. I have started DIY (Do-It-Yourself) pre-workout and post-workout supplements and will review that process too, as well as give you an easy receipe you could follow. I will also post DIY projects that I have been working on in regards to equipment or gym accessories. Hopefully, I will also start posting videos again and I will introduce you to my new training partner Nick. This is just a heads up.  Look for more posts coming soon.

PS: Here is my daily selfie coming back. This is a shirt I got for helping carry the giant Warner Bros balloon during a parade a few years back.


Product: Wrist Roller

Brand: DIY (Do It Yourself…tried the manly thing, making something myself)

Specs: Section of 2″ PVC Pipe, 2+” Stainless Steel Hose Clamp, Dog Leash

Review: First off, cut (we just used a hand saw) the section of 2″ PVC Pipe to fit over the safety bars on any standard squat rack.  (If you don’t have a squat rack or safety bars, this product won’t really work for you as it is intended.) Mine ended up being around 22″. Then secure the loop of the Dog Leash around the PVC Pipe.  After you loop it around, attach the Stainless Steel Hose Clamp to secure the Dog Leash in place. Tighten it down with a screw driver.  You now have a DIY Wrist Roller. Total cost was around $12.00.  My friend, and sometimes lifting buddy, Paul Ebsen gave me the idea and helped me make it. All you have to do now is attach any weight plates to it by looping the dog leash through the center hole on the plates and attach the clip to itself on the leash.  So far, mine has held 45lbs with no issues.  I am sure it can go heavier, but my wrists/forearms can’t yet. Here are some pictures:


Here is where I got the materials:

Home Depot:

Screen Shot 2015-12-05 at 9.41.30 AMScreen Shot 2015-12-05 at 9.42.26 AM

Wal-Mart:Screen Shot 2015-12-05 at 9.44.16 AM


If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section.  I will reply to comments as soon as possible.