Training on the Road

Training on the Road

Jul 28, 2016

By: Jeff Snyder

I have been competing in powerlifting for over 20 years and most have been dedicated to the bench press. Back in 2010 I started working as a MWD supervisor in the oil field. The majority of our work is on the road and is hard not only on my family life but also on my training. I have had great training partners in Randy Earle, Mitch Mayon, Wade Wakefield, Camron Anderson, Barn Nichols, Alex Smith and Mike and Ashlee Hafenbrack. Some of my best training has been with those people and I couldn’t have never accomplished what I have without these people (and my biggest fanboy and favorite Berserker Strength Radio host Josh Hunt). I have recently moved to North Carolina and I now have the privilege to train at Thompson’s gym (owned and operated by Donovan and Jen Thompson) which has been an awesome experience to train with US National Bench Press Coach Donovan Thompson, Multi-World Champion and World Record holder Jen Thompson, Matt Koe, Michelle Polinsky, Amanda Bradford, Logan and Devon Cox, Hannah Thrower, and Jeff and Shannon Holland.  However, this article is more about getting my training in on the road. It has been difficult at times but I stay motivated by pushing myself to try to keep up with my competition.

My training is very different from most other world class bench pressers. I have to change it up all the time with several different gyms. I try to do most of my heavy training when I am at my home gym with my regular training partners and then when I am out on the road I try to maintain as much as possible. For some of the places I have been, the biggest challenge has been simply traveling to the gym. The road conditions and also the travel time plays a huge part on my training. After a 12 hour day with maybe 4 hours of sleep the night before because of issues at work, I still push myself to go to the gym. I spent almost 3 years outside of Carlsbad, New Mexico where I made American Muscle my gym and met some great people there.  I made friends for life with Tim Gonzales and his son Tim Jr.  They walked right up to me and introduced themselves to me and helped me out whenever they could. I was invited into their home for party’s holidays and family gatherings. These two guys helped me out a lot with training and support and I am grateful for help and friendship.

There have been a few guys that I have worked with that have stepped up and trained with me also. Back when I worked with Ryan Directional Services my main man was Arlus Pierce.  What a great training partner he was out on the road.  We even bought weights and keep them in a storage locker in Cotulla, Texas. Just imagine.  No air in a tin building in south Texas.  Although it was blazing hot, we went every training day and Arlus never complained.  He just did the work and it pushed me to get better. With the oil prices the way they are, work has not been good, but for the past few months I have been working with 2 directional drillers from a company called Wolverine Directional Services. Mike Aary and Jeff Gillespie have worked out with me for the past few months and it has been great. I like to think I have helped these guys out a little.  I enjoyed motivating and pushing Arlus to get in shape because he was about 370 when I first met him.  Now I believe he has gotten himself down to 310!  This has been rewarding for me because I got to experience and be a part of that. Now I get to help with Gillespie’s technical form or Mike’s insecurities about strength, but it pales in comparison to how much these people have helped me out.

People have asked me how do I keep my strength up being out at work all the time, why I do what I do, or even how much longer I’m going to keep pushing myself to try to do this sport. I have been all over the world because of this sport and I have made some of the best friends in the world. Motivation comes from all different places whether it is seeing someone  else hit a huge number, friend or foe, or a teammate calling and saying can’t wait to see you at nationals. The people I have become friends with over the past 7 years in the USAPL and the IPF drives me more now than it used to just to go see my friends but don’t get it wrong, when the warm ups start for the super heavies, my fire burns as hot as anyone’s. To stand on a podium at the undisputed true world championships and represent the USA is a pretty awesome experience that not everyone gets to feel.  The amount of raw emotion is more than some people feel in their lifetime. So what drives me to train when the conditions are not always the best, or to purposefully miss sleep and drive 1.5 hours one way to train for 2 hours and drive back?  Well that’s easy, because I want to be the best for me, my training partners, friends, family, and dominate the platform for my teammates and THE USA!!!!


IMG_4675Jeff Snyder AKA War Machine, the last living Norse Demi-God in human flesh , is your 2014 IPF Master’s World Bench Press Champion and Best Lifter.  He has beaten all the greats in the sport of bench pressing, just ask him, he’ll set you straight.  He is arguably a better bench presser than Jona Leo and Blaine Sumner, after all Jeff is at least 3 inches taller with a longer range of motion.  If Jeff anatomically had a normal neck, he’d probably be 6 inches taller than both behemoths.  Doctor Emmett Brown invented the Flux Capacitor in order to transport himself from 1985 to the year of Jeff Snyder’s birth in order to study him. The intent was to ascertain what makes a man completely awesome and strong as an ox. These studies are ongoing and may have driven the doctor mad. There is no way of quantify the amount of masculinity and sheer awe that Mr. Snyder emanates. Look for the Jeff Snyder mixed drink in your local grocer in the near future. They are thought to increase your benchpress and badassedness.


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