If you can’t beat the best, join ‘em! Anthony Fuhrman is a professional strongman who has designed a program for you to become your best self.
That includes strength, power, and even dropping a few pounds while you’re at it! Let’s see why it’s a good program, or not…
About the Author – Anthony Fuhrman
Anthony might be one of the strongest individuals you’ll ever come across, and for good reason. He joined the army back when he was 18 years old, where he apparently started training intensely.
The Pennsylvanian-born youngling soon caught an affinity for strength training and soon started training under Mark Tayson in Colorado. Within 6 months, Fuhrman had qualified for Nationals as an HW, something we don’t see every day.
He later dropped to middleweight where he now remains, 105kg/231lbs. He went on to win an abundance of competitions at this weight:
- NC Strength Challenge 1st
- Rushmore State Classic 1st
- NC Strongest Man & Woman 1st
- Mid-Atlantic Strongman Challenge 1st
- Mid-Atlantic Strongman Challenge 1st
With a 765lbs deadlift and 655lbs squat, the man is a powerhouse! Anthony has also trained some of his peers, and as a result, is more than educated enough to design a program like this.
Total Package Strength Overview
Right off the bat, the Total Package Strength program is solely designed for serious strength. Sorry aesthetic boys, we’re lifting heavy over here. That being said, it’s not an excuse to eat like the retired powerlifter.
With a greater focus on barbell/compound movements, this plan is definitely not for beginners. That being said, it is still for people who want to further develop their strength, meaning you don’t have to be dirty strong – yet.
- Fitness level: Intermediate
- Duration: 6 Weeks
- Workouts per week: 4 Workouts per week
- Average workout duration: 45 – 60 Minutes
- Equipment needed: Full gym
- Goal: Gain strength
While Anthony himself is a strongman, he is adamant that the program is really for anyone looking to increase their strength levels. There will of course still be accessory work to manage recovery and injury prevention.
Total Package Strength Details
As with every other strength training protocol, there’s more to it than just “load another set of 40’s”. Strength training is actually really precise and calculated, so let’s take a look if this program is any different.
The training seems to be rather a low volume – especially in the first 3 weeks. Initially, you’ll only be training 3 times per week as an introduction to this style of training.
Not only do you need to adapt to the style, but also the intensity, load, and volume. Anthony has spent years under the bar, and that experience shines through in the program.
Like Meg Squats’ Uplifted, your training will be focused on the “big three lifts” – squat, bench, and deadlift. Thus, you will have a squat day, a deadlift day, and a press day per week. You’ll have an extra of either of the three, depending on which week you’re in.
Start off with that main lift that aligns with the “type” of day you’re training, and then accessories to help optimize your body for strength training.
When it comes to feeding a powerhouse, most people usually jump to junk food, drive-throughs, and just anything they can get their hands on.
Well hold your horses piggy (that makes no sense I apologize) Anthony is keen on doing the gains lean – after all, he is a weight-capped strongman!
Doing this leaner will allow for quality gains over time without the added bloat we so dreadfully want to avoid. He advises you simply follow these set of rules:
- Eat high-quality food while limiting junk food
- Include a large amount of protein with every meal
- Keep both your veggies and fluid intake high
- Skip the fasting and opt for smaller meals throughout the day
Of course, he also gives recommendations as to how much you should be eating, and from where those calories should come. The bodybuilding.com calculators are coming in great use for this part as per usual.
As a strength athlete, your recovery is going to be exceptionally important. Not just for your muscular recovery, but from a central nervous system perspective as well.
Luckily you’ll have 3-4 off days per week that you should make the most of for recovery. Anthony also advises you to follow these tips for increased recovery:
- Doing either some high intensity or moderate-intensity cardio on rest days
- Doing other activities like hiking or yoga on rest days
- Getting enough sleep, >7 hours per night
- Supplement with Whey Protein, Creatine, Fish/Krill Oil, and Pre-workout
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2 Pros of Total Package Strength
- It’s a proper strength program with an adequate load and ample rest period. This might make you go, “Yeah, it’s supposed to be”, but there are so many fake strength programs online, credit where credit is due
- It allows you to focus on your shortcomings. By doing sole days focusing on specific lifts, not only can you put physical effort into getting better but mental effort as well. This isn’t always possible with different lift focuses on one day
2 Cons of Total Package Strength
- He advises you to do quite a lot of cardio, and that might be a bit much for some. If your goal is pure strength, you might wanna take it easy on the cardio for recovery
- He advises you to lift with “intuition”. That means no RPE or percentages are given, which is fine in driven people. But if you “need” motivation, this plan might feel lackluster.
Total Package Strength – Final Thoughts
There are no real big negatives to this plan. Yeah, the cardio volume is a bit high, and I would prefer to see some recommendations about lifting the effort. That being said, it’s a solid plan regardless.
You will get more than enough rest time with a whole lot of stimulation from training. Eat and sleep well. You’ll be the strongest in your gym in no time.
If you’re only just getting into strength training but have spent some time under the bar, the Total Package Strength could be exactly what you need! Short, simple, and effective.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5