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A Week of PR’s, Chicago Pizza, and Burgers

Last week was one of the best weeks I have had in a long time. After the Crossfit games open sectionals ended, I decided to take a week off of CF  to sleep in an extra hour every day, to let my shin splints heal and to focus on getting some PR’s in my lifts. All of these goals were accomplished, along with a few other surprises. More about these topics in a few minutes.

After making a stupid decision 3 years ago to take off a year from college, a decision that I have spent 3 years kicking myself in the ass for making and the last year in community college maintaining a 3.9 GPA to prove that I really wanted to get back and finish my 4 year degree, I finally received my re-admission letter from the University on Thursday. To say that I was relieved would be a gross understatement. I have been stressing about re-admission for the better part of a year, and it was great to get that off my chest.

To celebrate, my wife brought home a behemoth that atlas would have trouble supporting. In layman’s terms, she brought home a Chicago deep dish pizza. My life was forever changed after that.

This will humble the mighty and swole the famished
This was my first experience with a Chicago style pizza, and it is one of the best experiences I have ever had. So good in fact, that after buying another 345 pound barbell set, I went back and bought another pizza to keep in the fridge and eat over the weekend. I usually can put away a whole pizza, but I struggled to finish 3 1/2 of these slices. I am ashamed.
This pizza binge set off a weekend food binge that looked something like this:

Needless to say it was a great weekend. For some reason I actually was 2 pounds lighter Monday morning than i was Friday morning. The metabolism works in mysterious ways.
As far as taking time off from CF to focus more on my lifts, it was a great decision. I have steadily been increasing weight on my lifts since I started following Rippetoe’s method and incorporating some Westside Barbell programming in for good measure. I wish I would have started focusing on strength earlier versus focusing on a quick benchmark WOD time, but better late than never. I have a ways to go before I get my lifts up to a worthwhile weight that I consider great, so I will keep working on it and kicking it in the ass.
Front Squat-20 pound increase
Bench Press-10 pound increase
Press-5 pound increase
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The Importance Of A Strong Posterior Chain and A Swole Belly

If I had a list of things that were of greatest interest to me, a strong posterior chain and a swole belly would hover somewhere in the top ten every time.

For those who don’t know, a posterior chain is defined as “a group of muscles, tendons and ligaments on the posterior kinetic chain of the body. Examples of these muscles include the biceps femoris, gluteus maximus, erector spinae muscle group, trapezius, posterior deltoids, and so on”.

As for a swole belly, that is simply defined as eating quickly, so quickly that your meal is already settled in your gut before your brain says “please stop”, then continuing to eat at least two more servings of whatever was previously on your plate. A swole belly is best enjoyed after a heavy lifting session, preferably squats.

You will need a swole belly and a strong posterior chain to ride in the bear cavalry.
A wise man named Zeb (he is more of a hard-ass than his hard-ass name, with traps the size of Egyptian pyramids, do NOT cross him) once told me the muscles most useful for lifting are the ones your opponent sees while he is on the ground and you are walking away from him. Zeb was talking, of course, about the posterior chain. This would be in direct contrast to what 85% of what muscles most of the lifting community focuses on, which are usually the muscles people see the most, like biceps, calves, etc… Lets not forget about the 6-pack that everyone wants, “but most men don’t have an ice chest to put it in”. (Rippetoe)
The posterior chain is only useful in a few specific lifts, these lifts would be EVERY SINGLE LIFT. I can not think of a time when I wasn’t using my hamstrings, lower back, etc… on any of my lifts, even the bench press can use the lower back and hamstrings if your feet are positioned correctly, flat on the ground, driving that weight into the ground and giving you a solid position to get that weight up.
I have recently started incorporating more posterior chain specific movements into my programming in order to increase my numbers, I have made the GHD, glute-ham raise, and good mornings my new best friends. These exercises will help me get the barbell to break the crest of my knee without hitching on the deadlift, and drive out of the hole on a squat. Do you really need any more reasons to work your PC? If so, leave a message in the comments.

Important to remember that a big, strong posterior chain will  not allow you to wear your old jeans, and you will be forced to wear lululemon pants, shorts, and boxers belong to a titan.
On to other important things, such as a swole belly. I try to achieve a swole belly at least twice a week, having a wife that loves to cook makes this easily attainable. You will know that you have achieved swole belly status when the thought of taking a deep breath sounds too difficult. If you are trying to put on weight, a swole belly is necessary at least 3 times a week, paired with a metric butt-ton of squats. I did GOMAD (Gallon Of Milk A Day) for one month combined with epic meals and I put on about 20 pounds, bringing my total weight gain to 46 pounds. I am 6′ 5″, so I consider this a bit of a feat, considering how many calories it takes for me to simply break even. You will have reached a whole other level if you achieve a swole belly and feel like you will explode and break your chair, only to be hungry and ready for another round 30 minutes later. Welcome to my level.
I leave you with some swole inducing photos, if you have some photos, leave them in the comments.
 Keep a pack of these in your back pocket at all times.

 Four fried avocados. Bully for me.
 7 courses, all containing beef.
 This burrito was literally the size of my forearm. It comes with an optional stretcher to carry you out of the restaurant.
This is what your fridge should look like in an ideal week, enough food for 4 or 5 days.
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If you have any suggestions or comments for the blog or if you have some mind-blowing news to tell me, email me at

And if you’re really trying to stalk me:!/Bkreig

If you are in the Seattle area and would like personal strength training sessions, contact me at the email above and respond with your name, times/dates you are available, your contact info and your goals for the strength training. Pricing upon request.

For those who are outside of the Seattle area and would like personal strength consultations, I am available to organize personalized workout plans depending on your goals and needs, as well as a nutrition profile. Pricing upon request. 

Brandon Morrison, Level 1 Crossfit Trainer

**The author and publisher disclaim any responsibility for adverse effects or consequences from the misapplication or injudicious use of the information presented on this website.

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Why I Am Starting This Blog

Good morning loyal subjects, this is my first blog post, on my first blog, after years of saying I would never start a blog, it looks like I caved in. I may as well tell you a little about myself, and why I started this blog.

I am 23 years old, recently married, currently trying to attain my Bachelors in Strategic Communications, I am a huge fan of eating amazing food, especially food that my wife cooks,  and  I am an avid Crossfitter but have recently started to focus more on Strength and explosive speed, specifically the Powerlifts and Oly Lifts.
I love Crossfit, I think it is a great program and a great way to include people of all ages and backgrounds in a comprehensive fitness program. However, there are 3 main points of the Crossfit program that just don’t sit right with me:

1) Kipping Pull-Up vs. Strict (This topic has been beaten to death, resurrected, and beaten again)
2)High Repping Oly Lifts (Encourages decreasing good form and potential injury inducing)
3)Lack of Focused Programming 

Concerning #3, I know that this is what Crossfit is all about, But i prefer a goal to work towards, rather than doing one movement once or twice a month.

I also have decided to eat a very relaxed version of Paleo,  I also think the paleo diet is great and is what a lot of people need. But I am 6 foot 5 inches, and 230 pounds, and the last time I did paleo, I lost almost 17 pounds, which is the opposite of what i wanted. It is simply too hard on my wallet to get the 5000+ calories i need every day just to maintain my weight, much less add muscle, from eating strict paleo. Another reason is that my wife is an amazing cook, and can make some of the most epic meals ever, they almost bring a tear to my eye. She cooks everything from scratch, and always uses fresh ingredients (we dont eat anything packaged), so if there is some flour in the recipe or noodles, that is fine with me. I simply cannot get enough carbohydrates from a paleo diet, but if it works for you, then go for it.

In closing, this blog will focus on 4 main things, with possible divergences, the 4 topics include:

1) Progessions In My Lifts and CF WOD Times
2) The Meals My Wife Makes (Which Will Make You A Man)
3) Articles and Videos From Fellow Lifters and Websites That Inspire Me
4) Ranting and Raving About The Everyday World Which Pisses Me Off.

To finish off this post, Here is a picture of the best meatballs ever made(grass-fed beef, chicken sausage, duck eggs, spices, etc…), and 6 pounds of heavenly pulled pork. To quote one of my favorite sites “”,

“Eating is training. Beowulf had Grendel. We have Mongolian and Chinese buffets. If you don’t have at least one dining experience every couple of weeks that resembles an epic struggle worthy of telling over beers, you’ll be putting from the rough for the foreseeable future.”