Paul Oneid – Know yourself

If you have been following along, you would know that I have been struggling the last couple of weeks with my training.  If you haven’t, let me give you a run down…  I made the decision in the new-year to prioritize my personal and professional endeavours and place training on the back burner.  I needed a goal to train for and I had a very successful weight loss of 25lbs and have managed to maintain the physique very well.  With things looking stable outside the gym, I reached out to Derek Wilcox to handle my training and even though he is extremely busy, he graciously agreed to help.  Things went well and he pushed me hard – which I wanted and thought I was ready for after the significant time away during the weight loss.  Unfortunately, things were not stable and my stress levels outside the gym have continued to rise.  This leads me to where I was on Sunday – CRASHED.


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In the last month I have gotten married, been engulfed in a professional dispute on a side project, launched a seminar series with Jay Nera and Jordan Shallow, continued to work full time, continued to work with some amazing clients online and travel to handle lifters at meets.  In fact, I have worked every weekend since my wedding, including the day after it.  I say this not for pity because things are in general very good, but just for full disclosure.  I have a habit of pushing myself too hard in the gym, but that is a trait that encompasses my life.  It was at the point for me this weekend where something had to give.  Unfortunately, that was my training.  I showed up to squat and could not squat 405 without significant joint pain in my hips and knees.  I know these feelings all too well and as hard as it was to do, I left the gym.  I quit my session.  Something I haven’t done… ever.  Although I have never done it, I have coached many of my lifters to do exactly that – go home and try again.  No harm, no foul.

In situations where I am questioning my next steps, I am very lucky to have my wife #hotpam to bounce ideas off of.  She said exactly what I needed to hear – You need to slow down.  Unfortunately, where I am at in my life professionally, I cannot unload things and quite frankly, I don’t want to.  It is going too well!  This means that training needs to take a back seat again.  In this regard, I had two choices.  The first was to contact Derek, explain my situation and come up with a plan to accomplish more with less.  For most, this is the ideal scenario because Derek is a phenomenal coach and has BEEN THERE before with his own PhD studies.  Unfortunately, because of my personality, if I am beholden to someone I need to deliver, or it causes me stress.  I cannot have my outlet for stress continue to be a stressor.  If we put a plan together and I couldn’t follow it, it would increase my stress level.  I can’t have that.  The second option and the one I chose was to explain this to Derek OVER A PHONE CALL (not a text you immature child) and thank him for working with me for a short time.  He understood me completely and respected my decision.

So what now?  Well, I keep training, but I keep it light and continue to work hard.  Exactly what I have always done.  The difference is that I cut myself slack and listen to my body when it tells me to slow down.  I will focus on pushing the pace of the workouts and increasing density of training, as opposed to loads.  I seem to recover better from this.  Training will be my time away from the outside world and when that side quiets down a bit more, I will try to ramp up again.  I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to know yourself and not continue to push when all signs are telling you to slow down.  Powerlifting won’t pay my bills, but it could possible impact my ability to if I get hurt again.  This is my hobby and a way for me to push myself.  You can’t push hard in all aspects of life at the same time and I am glad that I came to this realization before I got hurt again.


*Goal for this day was to get a sick pump and move quickly between sets, which I did.  Nothing higher than RPE 6.

  1. Close Grip – 4×8
  2. Feet Up, Close Grip Spoto – 4×8
  3. DB Press – 3×20
  4. French Press – 3×10
  5. Pressdowns – 4×25
  6. Dynamic Resisted Deadbug – 4x10ea
  7. Low trap work



  1. Daily
    1. Bottoms-Up Carry – 5 trips/arm
    2. McGill Big-3
  2. Upper
    1. ShoulderRok – 4x10ea
    2. McGill T-Spine – 10reps
    3. Pushups – 3-5×10-15
    4. Band Pull Apart series – 2x10ea x5 positions
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Paul Oneid

Paul is an elite level raw Powerlifter with personal bests of an 805lbs squat, 440lbs bench, 725lbs deadlift and a 1960lbs total in the 242lbs class, as well as an 800lbs squat, 430lbs bench, 700lbs deadlift and 1930lbs total in the 220lbs class. Paul brings a deep educational background to the team as he has earned Master’s degrees in both Sports Management and Exercise Science. He is a former D1 Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coach, who now works as a Functional Rehabilitation Specialist in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Paul provides coaching services in the areas of training and nutrition through his company Master Athletic Performance and is also the co-founder of a technology company, 1-Life Inc. Stay tuned for more information on that in the future!
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Brian Carroll

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Brian Carroll

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