Brian Carroll | Offseason week 9 | Day 3 | and then the wheels fell off

I’m about 12 weeks out from the Arnold and in the middle of offseason! To read more about my current offseason 10/20/Life split, scroll down to the bottom of this post.

NOTE: Dr. Stuart McGill’s Back Mechanic and Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance will be available on PRS for sale next week!


For the rest of this year, clothing is on sale!

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Last Wednesday I felt like I was getting sick. My wife was sick all week and I just felt like crap. The training session didn’t feel great even though I got through it just fine (I thought) and actually made some improvements in my grip that I’m happy with.

My lower body was showing signs of being out of whack but I kept pushing it. Not smart.. here is what I did.

Normal warm-up which you can read about HERE McGill Big 3

McGill chins: 20
Barbell rack row: 5×5 up to 315
DOH shrug: up to 405×5
2-arm KB swing: 3×10
GHR: 3×10
Bulgarian split squat: 3×10
Piston squat: 5×5

My lower body felt like complete crap and off. I was tight in places I shouldn’t be and loose in others. This made me furious. It all started in my adductor, then I strained my glute a couple weeks ago.. THEN it jumped sides and now my lower body is gridlocked. I think I finished this deal off when I cranked out my GHR and Split squats during this session.

Being a little bit heavy (5lb) starting my walking again on crooked and uneven surfaces, not doing proper body work and cranking up the weight all the while ignoring some hip issues compounded this issue and I created a monster.

I went in for a massage last Friday as I was starting to see the error of my ways and it was brutal from start to finish, top to bottom. This pissed me off even more and I had a come to jesus with myself. I always seem to learn the hard way.

This woke up me up out of my stupid coasting nap.

I spent 10 years as a Massage Therapist (LMT) and know the importance of ART, NMT, proper freely moving mobility to ball and socket joints, and here I am not doing enough preventative work for myself when I KNOW better.

Those that know me well – I’m super hard on those I am closest to and can take it overboard at times. With that said, the way I get pissed at myself and hold my self accountable is a whole different level of self loathing. I get so f%^king pissed at myself when I don’t do the right things or mess something up, forget something or just act like an dufus. BUT I do not soon forget and get on the correct path. I’m here now.

Lisa, Todd, Will, Beth, Scott, Byrd and couple others can relate to this when I was with them in SC last July. I had a bad squatting and deadlift session (some was my fault, some out of my control) and so I went A CLockwork Orange that night and then the next morning as I mentally prepared and then repeated the session and did it well. There was nothing that was going to stop me from squatting well the next day.

And that’s where I am now…

I’ll obsess over this for a little bit, constantly talk to myself and beat myself over the head, then I’ll continue do what I should have been doing the whole time and be just fine.

Weekly massages, daily rolling where and when needed, ART therapy sessions weekly and rest (ZERO training) for another week is what I will be doing.

I have a LONG road ahead of me next year with the Arnold, US open, then RPS Redemption.. So I’m awake for the ride.

Thanks to all who have my back.

I just finished competing at the RPS Conquest Meet on 10/3/15 where I squatted 1100, benched 780 and pulled 760 for a 35lb squat PR and a 30lb total PR with a 2640tot for second all time.

Am I happy with the results? NO, but I’m content for now. I realize I have a few things I need to work on going forward as well as some things to dial in.

What am I HAPPY about? Being back with INZER!

Get some NEW 3/4 Sleeve Baseball 10/20/life Swag HERE


What I’m doing now

I’m doing a lot of pre/rehab – back, shoulder and hip work right now. I’m at the point now where being healthy and available is far more important than significant strength gains over each cycle. Yes, I attack my weak points and put work in but your body will be a complete weak point if you push volume/intensity too hard together for too long and it falls apart.

** keep in mind, I have ZERO pain in my body. It’s preemptive. It’s prehab to prevent and the rest of the work is rehab bc my I will always be rehabbing my back. It’s a life sentence but I’m pain free and wouldnt have it any other way.

I have the Arnold next march. I have not even thought about the meet to be honest. Time will come for that but no need for that now. Right now the focus is on healing and recovery!

Here is what my BIG 3 lift day looks like

5 week block
Work all three lifts on same day – light RPE and raw. Will be good for work capacity, high volume with lower intensity and allow for LOTs of assistance work throughout the week!
Day 1 -Pause squats – work hip mobility
Floor press – great movement for me to build raw bench power
Deads – conv deads – working below the knee to keep perfect position and work the mid range.
Day 2 – crap load of upper body work/bench ass. DB presses, dips etc to add mass to triceps and pecs
Day 3 – direct upper back and quad work – leg press, piston squats etc
Day 4 – Full and buff (mostly pec, delt and tri work)


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Brian Carroll

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Brian Carroll is committed to helping people overcome back pain and optimizing lifts and movement. After years of suffering, he met back specialist Prof. McGill in 2013, which led to a life-changing transformation. In 2017, they co-authored the best-selling book "Gift of Injury." On October 3, 2020, Carroll made history in powerlifting by squatting 1306 lbs, becoming the first person to break this record. He retired with a secure legacy and a life free from back pain.
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