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The Army’s Strongest Man (with Anthony Fuhrman)

Today we’re talking to strongman competitor Anthony Fuhrman. He’s the two-time World’s Strongest Man at 105 kilograms and was a competitor on NBC’s Titan Games. Anthony is also an active duty service member, and our discussion today focuses in part on how he balances his training with a full time job in the US Army. Anthony is also a BarBend contributor and one of the most personable people in strength. If you’ve ever been interested in strongman, the military, or anything in between, this is one episode you won’t want to miss.

We want to take a second to give a special shoutout to our episode sponsor, Transparent Labs. If you want clean, clearly labeled supplements with ingredients backed by science, Transparent Labs has you covered. (Seriously, no hidden ingredients, no proprietary blends, and nothing artificial.) That includes their uber-popular BULK pre-workout, with ingredients we love to see for focus and energy PLUS vitamin D3, boron, and zinc. All the good stuff, absolutely no fillers. Use code “BARBEND” at checkout for an extra 10% off your order.

On this episode of The BarBend Podcast, host David Thomas Tao talks to Anthony Fuhrman about:

  • Overcoming a recent injury and surgery (1:45)
  • The challenges of the block press (and why it’s different than a standard overhead press) (4:50)
  • Anthony’s military career (8:34)
  • Anthony’s unique role in the Army’s Warrior Fitness Team (13:00)
  • Falling in love with the sport of strongman (15:50)
  • Becoming the World’s Strongest Man at 105 kilograms (18:40)
  • Balancing training with a full time military career (24:50)

Learn more about our sponsor Transparent Labs and get 10% off your order with code “BARBEND.” (We may receive commissions on items purchased through links on this page.)

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Relevant links and further reading:

Transcription

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

He had a set of stones and he was like, “Can you lift this?” and he’d take me up. I loaded a 300-pound stone my first time touching a stone. Addicted. That feeling of accomplishment, it was crazy.

David TaoDavid Tao

Welcome to the “BarBend Podcast,” where we talk to the smartest athletes, coaches, and minds from around the world of strength. I’m your host, David Thomas Tao, and this podcast is presented by barbend.com.

 

Today, I’m talking to strong man competitor Anthony Fuhrman. He’s the two-time World’s Strongest Man at 105 kilograms and was a competitor on NBC’s “Titan Games.” Anthony is also an active duty service member and our discussion today focuses in part on how he balances his training with a full-time job in the US Army.

 

Anthony is also a BarBend contributor and one of the most personable people in strength. If you’ve ever been interested in Strongman, the military, or anything in between, this is one episode you won’t want to miss.

 

I want to take a second to give a special shout-out to our episode sponsor, Transparent Labs. If you want clean, clearly-labeled supplements with ingredients backed by science, Transparent Labs has you covered. Seriously, no hidden ingredients. No proprietary blends, and nothing artificial.

 

That includes their uber-popular BULK Pre-Workout. With ingredients we love to see for focused-in energy, plus vitamin D3, boron, and zinc. All the good stuff. Absolutely no fillers. Use code BarBend at checkout for an extra 10 percent off.

 

Anthony, thanks so much for joining us today. I know you’re just getting back into training after recovering from surgery. Tell us what happened.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I was offered a one-month window, like, “Hey, next month do you want to break a block press world record for the 105 kilogram class?” Luckily, when I compete, I maintain my weight within 20 pounds of my weight class. It’s silly to blow up like some of these guys do. A lot of weight cuts take a toll on you.

 

I took that. I was training for it. I was going to break it. Then, exercise one day, I did a pull-up. I tore my bicep distal tendon. Something I’ve done a million of. I’ve done muscle-ups, all types of stuff. One pull-up just sent me crashing to the floor.

David TaoDavid Tao

It’s kind of like you hear the stories of an All-Star pitcher who breaks their finger getting out of bed, or something like that. It’s the smallest little thing you don’t even think about in your warm-up. Boom. Done.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yep. It’s the damnedest thing. I couldn’t believe it. At first I didn’t know. I thought I’d maybe torn the muscle belly because it didn’t roll up. There’s not really a lot of swelling, no bruising, all the tell-tale signs.

 

I kept training for the block press for another three weeks. I took it easy as not to irritate it. I knew I already have the power. I just wanted to make it to there. A week before, I just messed the block a little bit and I couldn’t clean it. It’s one bicep.

David TaoDavid Tao

Well, you’re not…

 

…the block press. I want to talk about that a second. It’s not a block press from the rack. You have to actually pick it up. It’s not like it’s mounted right here at front rack level and you could just press it.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

If it was, I could have still done it because pressing didn’t hurt. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

It’s actually getting up. A block press. For people who might not be familiar, even people who are familiar with the sport of Strongman, you don’t see block press that often. It’s one of those events that…You can go to a competition. You can expect to see a stone loading. You can expect to see a carry. You can expect to see a log press or a Viking press.

 

A block press, it’s this weird thing. What is it and what were you aiming for?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

With the block press, is pretty much what it sounds like. It’s a block.

 

They’ve been made out of steel, made out of concrete, stones. This one was a mouser block press called [inaudible 3:57] from over here. He created his own loadable ones which was cool for people who start training on and get their hands on. That was going to be on that.

 

In training, I hit worth of 300 pounds fairing north of it. I would say around 315, 320 was doable on contest day for no joke. The record was 283.

David TaoDavid Tao

You were going to smash this record. You were…

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I’m not going to nickel-and-dime like some of these guys. One, I don’t get paid because I’m one of five. [laughs] I don’t want that nickel-and-dime and keep breaking it like they do, I guess.

David TaoDavid Tao

You do it for the glory. Well, the thing about a block press too is there are no handles on this thing. It’s just a block. You have the edge, that 90-degree edge digging into your palms. It’s unwieldy. It’s not something that after you…cleaning it’s tough. It’s also where after you clean it, you can comfortably even hold it there for a long time. This is a tough movement.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 It’s very important to have a good, very stable upper back and strict press to be able to push the press block, I mean. There’s a certain point…push presses, it’s impressive. You hold it out here. You got to lean back.

 

It’s almost like the whole time you bent press — bend back and press up and then come through. If you go to push up the heavy block, you did it. It’s going to just fall forward.

David TaoDavid Tao

You had the surgery. What’s your recovery been like? What’s your timeline? — I know you’re back to training. You’re back to doing some upper body movements — to where you’re like, “OK, this is where I’ll be at full intensity and volume?”

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I took it very cautious the first month. I felt good. I came out of the surgery, one year later came out the cast and I didn’t even need the walking brace.

David TaoDavid Tao

Oh, that’s great.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Extensions. That’s a head start. I took it easy, I was very careful just because this is a new injury for me. I don’t need to be setting myself back six months again. Going in a month-two, I started testing it a little more than I should have to be honest. It felt good, I still pulled back when it felt finicky. I was just cleared to lift five pounds.

 

It goes to show you doctors are not always aware of the patient’s abilities because I’m benching right now. I didn’t pull any of my first pull-ups last week, two months out. I’m ahead of normal schedule is usually about 12 weeks before you can start doing that again.

David TaoDavid Tao

What kind of — this is just a medical disclaimer here are the BarBend Podcast, listen to your doctor’s advice. This is not a medical podcast, I should just say that.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Please listen to your doctor, not me.

David TaoDavid Tao

Anthony Fuhrman is not a doctor, nor does he play one on television. My question is what kind of training were you do…? I mean were you still doing a lot of lower body accessories, were you able to squat? Were you able to do some of those things that not upper body dominant?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Initially I did, for a week or two. I did three days a waist squat up. Honestly, I just got burnt out real quick. I knew that it wasn’t fun. I was trying to grind through too much, but I just basically took two months off training. I needed it. My body needed it. I dropped a bunch of weight. It felt good. I started running again.

David TaoDavid Tao

I remember we were talking a couple of weeks ago and you were like, “Yeah, I’ve been running,” and you had just confused intonation. You still didn’t quite believe it. Honestly, as a Strongman athlete, we need video proof. We got to get a video of your…Hey you can set a record for the Fastest Strongman Mile. I’m sure it’s 15 minutes or something, I’m kidding.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I used to run a 13-minute, 2-mile.

David TaoDavid Tao

That’s fast.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah, back when I was 18 to 21 timeframe. I was the wind.

David TaoDavid Tao

What was your body weight then compared to now?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I was still about 220, 215, 220. I don’t think I’ve been under…I did under 200 one time my first Afghanistan to work but that’s because I was malnourished.

David TaoDavid Tao

Fair. I mean, that’s a heck of a way to lose weight is to stop training or just being malnourished on deployment…

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I remember I came back and my dad, my ex-wife, she jumped out at me and she was 110 pounds. I couldn’t finish a sandwich. [laughs] I started [inaudible 8:06] so much.

David TaoDavid Tao

That’s actually a good segue because we’ll talk a bit more about your career and your background in the sport. You’re obviously extraordinarily accomplished two time World Strongest Man at 105 kilograms.

 

I don’t think it’s the most interesting part of your day-to-day and the career that you’ve carved out for yourself in the fitness industry, also in the military. Talk a little bit about your background in the military and bring us to what you’re doing today in the army.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 I joined in 2006 show my age here, under good old Bush administration. That’s how old I am about three presidents ago now. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

Three about…

 

It’ll still be three by the time I don’t know. It’s…Yeah, we’ll see.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

One, two, three. I’ve served on three presidents some like that. I initially joined for military intelligence because my family pushed me it’s safer. I remember I was watching, “We Were Soldiers” with Mel Gibson. Have you ever seen that movie?

David TaoDavid Tao

I have. Just a quick aside you’re stationed in Kentucky right now. That movie is based on a book written by a guy from my hometown in Kentucky.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

The Colonel’s from here, he was from [inaudible 9:23] .

David TaoDavid Tao

Bardstown, Kentucky, or the surrounding area basically where I grew up…This is getting to inside baseball if you’re not from Kentucky, I don’t want to make this podcast super confusing but that’s a…Anyway.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Colonel Hal Moore or Hal…Anyways, he guest me when they start charging machine guns just the whole. I remember watching it and this was the [inaudible 9:46] of the Iraq war. It hit me. I felt like a pansy for not joining the infantry so I went back into the recruiting office and demanded the switch my job infantry because I wanted…

David TaoDavid Tao

I’d like the harder job where you go through tougher things and unpleased.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

For me, it was just putting in. I wanted to contribute. I saw evil happening, and I wanted to positively affect change, honestly. It felt like it was a calling. People say, “It’s a calling,” and it sounds corny. It really was.

 

I joined the infantry, was stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. 101st Airborne for five years. Deployed Iraq, to Baghdad and Kandahar with them. Moved on to another station. Went to Afghanistan again. Moved on to another station. Then, I became a recruiter. They were selecting for recruiting. This was after about 10 years in the infantry or so.

David TaoDavid Tao

You’ve got a good decade in active service at this point.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. I was a Sergeant First Class already. Multiple deployments, infantry. I was, we call it “Mr. Hooah.” That’s what we call it. Then, I got selected for recruiting. I thought it was going to be drill sergeant, but they made me recruiter. Turns out I love talking, so it was a very good fit. [laughs]

 

I got stationed in Tampa, Florida, as a recruiter. I loved it. Actually, I loved it as much if not more than infantry. Once again, I saw positive change I was affecting. Everyone thinks recruiters are these little mustachioed weirdoes at a corner snatching kids. I tell you, I volunteered in the community.

 

I was a volunteer high school football coach in my free time, because I love working with kids and affecting change positive. I’m talking straight conditioning-wise. I volunteered with them, and then the community. I can’t tell you how many kids came back after basic training like, “I got out of this situation.”

 

I had kids coming in, even wealthy. Everyone thinks wealthy kids don’t join the Army. You know what the parents can’t buy you is a Ranger contract and a 50-cal machine gun. That’s what kids want sometimes. They want stuff that can’t be bought, too. It’s really quite amazing the amount of different people you run into as a recruiter. It’s not the stereotype.

 

That’s my job now permanently. I switched over because, once again, I’m always trying to affect positive change in the world and my community. That was my best option.

David TaoDavid Tao

We’ll get back to that in just a moment. First, another quick word from our sponsor, Transparent Labs. You know Hafþór Björnsson, 2018 World’s Strongest Man and one of the strongest human beings in history? Yep, he uses Transparent Labs to fuel his performance.

 

Now, not everyone is a 6’9″ Icelandic world record-holder, and you probably don’t eat 8,000 calories a day. Transparent Labs has the goods for every strength athlete. Clinically effective doses, nothing artificial, and a label you can actually read. Now, let’s get back to the conversation.

 

I remember when we first had a conversation about you doing some work with BarBend and becoming a contributor, we were chatting. I was like, “Is there anything you have to get cleared with your higher-ups or your supervisors, because being an active duty service person conflicts of interest and things like that?”

 

A big part of your job is to actually just get out there and represent the United States Armed Forces in the media spotlight through fitness. Tell us a little bit more about how that came about.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

The US Army Warrior Fitness Team is a broadening assignment. What they did is they started this team to bring in high-level competitors to the Army. There are a bunch of us. There’s powerlifters, bodybuilders, Strongmen. CrossFit is a big one, because that methodology is really in-line with military readiness the best way.

 

The way I train is not ideal for the Army. I’m 100 percent honest with people all the time. It’s fun being strong, but you don’t need to be strong to be a good soldier. We had Captain Chandler Smith, obviously number six at the CrossFit Games this year. He’s a pretty good athlete. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

Almost in that top five. We were really like, “Oh my goodness!”

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

His work ethic, it puts me to shame. I worked out with him once, and I threw up everywhere. We did the workout with Martins. I took Martins there. We all did a workout while I was still recovering, which sucked. I couldn’t give my all.

David TaoDavid Tao

Martins, for a big guy, for an open competitor, he’s about as athletic as you’re going to get.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

He is. He’s astonishingly athletic. The obstacle course we did, I thought he was going to do a third of them. He did all of them that he tried. A couple he didn’t try, because he’s not afraid of heights, of course. Other than that, he was nimble as can be. It blew my mind. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

Gravity hits different when you weigh 330 pounds.

 

The Warrior Fitness Team — how many people are on the team? Are they all stationed where you are? Are you all working together?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. We got 15 people. We have our facility here at Fort Knox. We train. We go around the country competing at different things. CrossFit has a lot of team events they do. Then, we have some strongmen on our team. My training partner, Sergeant Justin Loy, is doing Nationals next week. I think he’s going to win it. I call him out.

David TaoDavid Tao

We’ll probably release this podcast after that, so people will be able to know if you…

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

No. I’m psychic.

 

I’m going to call it. [inaudible 15:08] .

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Your passion for Strongman and for fitness and strength training and your day job have started to blend together. It took a decade or more, but they started to blend together. There’s this singularity, which is super cool, but it wasn’t always the case. It’s not like you joined the Warrior Fitness Team, and then you got into Strongman.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I won my first world title before I was on this team.

David TaoDavid Tao

Right. Tell us about your background in the sport of Strongman. You’re clearly super athletic. We’ve seen you on the Titan Games. We’ve seen you do all sorts of stuff. You probably had your choice of strength sports you could go into. What sparked your passion for Strongman, and how did you start competing in that?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

It was after a knee scope I had out in Colorado, Fort Carson station. It was a torn meniscus. I think it was my second or third one.

David TaoDavid Tao

I’ve had a couple of those, too. [laughs]

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

They went and cleaned it up. It was prophylaction. No. I don’t know. Either way, I was down for a little bit. I couldn’t do the normal Army PT, physical training. I couldn’t do the running and the rucking, so I picked up lifting again. I drill lifted for a while. This was back in 2014, 2015.

David TaoDavid Tao

 It’s actually fairly recent, in the scope of how long it takes to build strength.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. That’s when I started lifting heavy-ish. I thought I was heavy when I was drill lifting, but then I started getting stronger. I wasn’t running, because I was hurt. Go figure. I think I hit a 600-pound deadlift fairly quick that year.

 

Then, Mark Taysom — I don’t know if you know who that is — he was running a program for 4th Infantry Division at a gym there. He saw me lifting. He’s like, “You’re kind of strong, but I’ve deadlifted that much, too, and you’re way bigger than me.”

 

We got talking. I knew Strongman. Everyone knows Strongman. I watched the Dominator growing up, Mariusz Pudzianowski. Perhaps the greatest Strongman of all time.

David TaoDavid Tao

Arguable and debatable for another recording.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

[laughs] I was like, “Stones, truck.” I knew all that stuff. He had a set of stones. He was like, “Can you lift this?” He taped me up. I loaded a 300-pound stone my first time touching a stone. Addicted. That feeling of accomplishment. It was crazy. I started training real hard. My first competition was June of 2015 in Denver, Colorado.

David TaoDavid Tao

You obviously hit the elite level. You have been the best in two years. When was that time when you were like, “Wow, I can really excel at this!”?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I think that moment was my first America’s Strongest Man in 2017. I had turned pro earlier that year at Platinum Plus. I had done pretty well. It was a pretty convincing win. I also knew that amateur professional levels were different, even though I was only two years in the sport. I really didn’t know. I thought I knew.

 

I’m all right, those guys are gone. I look at who I’m competing now and it’s Shaun D. Marinez and Nicholas Canby and James Stephenball and I’m just like, “Oh, my God. These guys are way stronger than anyone I competed against.” I won America’s Strongest Man 2017 just hoping to not lose my ass.

 

I just didn’t want to come in last, pretty much, and I was fighting deep. I was fighting for first place. We got a tiebreaker and that’s just when I was like, “I belong. My hard work pays off.” That’s pretty cool.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Winning your first World’s Strongest Man at your body weight category, what was that like? Most people trained for a lot longer than you trained in the sport before they’re competing for world titles like that. What was your feeling after that?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

That was in 2018. That was a couple months after I filmed Titan Games. Titan Games hadn’t aired yet. It was a very good year. I felt like the universe was almost riding me on a high. I felt very confident going into it. My body felt great. I was probably the leanest, strongest I’ve ever been. I could have stepped on a bodybuilding stage in that timeframe.

David TaoDavid Tao

Humble brag. Nice little humble brag there.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

I say that one time, though. It ain’t been like that since.

I promise you that. Everything came together, was my basic point. It was tip of the spear. That was my weekend. No matter who was there, that was my weekend.

David TaoDavid Tao

Let’s talk a little bit about The Titan Games. 2018 was a very busy year for you. Obviously, The Titan Games has been a massive success for NBC. It helps that the most popular, high-end…

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Human being. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

The most popular human being in the world is behind it, Dwayne Johnson. I almost said, “The Rock.” I should say, “Dwayne Johnson.” That’s his…

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

DJ. We call him DJ.

David TaoDavid Tao

You call him DJ. Well I’m not going to call him DJ. I’ve never met the guy. I’m not going to upset him. Have you seen the guy? Did you have a sense when you were filming Titan Games, you’re like, “This could do well. This could help bring strength mainstream.”

 

We’ve seen so many shows. “American Gladiators” they tried to reboot. Didn’t quite take off. Didn’t have the stickiness. It’s looking like Titan Games might be that. It might be the show that brings strong people more mainstream. Did you get a sense of that when you were filming it, or did you have your doubts?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I was pretty happy. I thought it was going to be a great thing for the sport. I think if I would have done a little better, held up my end of the bargain, I could have brought a little more [inaudible 20:43] the competition. It would have been a little better for the community if I had done a little better.

 

The whole thing is, I wasn’t even ready yet. They don’t tell you. It was blind. It was like going into a Strongman comp blind. I thought it was going to do it. I think it did. We had Charity Witt, of course the first Titaness. She brought a lot to the community.

 

You got to see the difference in people. I was way different in my size and abilities than most of the people there. A lot people do cross-training, CrossFit, Ninja Warrior stuff. They all look the same-ish. I’m not even big in our sport, and I dwarfed them. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

I hate to use this term. You’re one of the self-described “little guys.” You show up, and everyone’s like, “This guy is massive!”

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I was like, “What are you talking about? No, I’m not massive.” I spend so much time around huge people. You forget you’re 250 pounds. It’s a linebacker. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Let’s give a sense for those who might not be aware. You compete at 105 kilograms. For the pound-inclined folks, he’s 105 kilograms, not 105 pounds when we say, “105.” Anthony’s a pretty big guy by normal standards. How tall are you? My follow-up to that is, have you ever thought about going up to the open weight category?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I’m 5’11”. I spent most of last year chasing the open category. I competed at the Arnold South Africa and Arnold Europe. Pro Arnold, against Mateusz and Mikhail and all those guys. They were really cool with me, even though they knew they were going to destroy me.

 

I probably got the strongest I’ve ever been, but it was still like…

David TaoDavid Tao

What was your body weight at that comp?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

At one point, I got up to 275.

David TaoDavid Tao

Some of these guys still had about 100 pounds on you.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

Oh yeah, and that 275 was not necessarily a solid 275. That was fun. I got real strong. I competed with them, but it took a toll on my body. My knee gave out again. I’m not meant to be that heavy. I had fun. I’m blessed that I had that year I had where I was able to do that with them, but I think it’s out of the realm of my capabilities.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Becoming that big, it almost becomes your job. I’ve talked to Rob Kearney a bunch about this, and Rob did not start that big, right? He is not a 6’7″ naturally gigantic-framed guy. He actually found Strongman after doing CrossFit. For him, gaining weight has been a years-long endeavor.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Half a decade I think it’s taken him to put on the weight necessary to compete with them guys. He’s about my height. I think he’s a little shorter, actually. Once again, I’m not necessarily in a position where I can gain that weight. I have duties and responsibilities for the Army.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

That’s another factor. You could’ve just said that. You could’ve just been like, “It’s not my choice, man.” No, I’m kidding.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I mean, I feel calm. Even at 275, I was able to pass the body fat percentage in the PT test.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

What is the body fat percentage?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

I think I’m allowed. It goes by age. I’m in the old man bracket. I think I get 22 percent now. I’ve never been borderline, so I don’t actually know off the top of my head the max.

David TaoDavid Tao

I didn’t realize it changed with age.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

They give some leniency as you get older. Guys put on weight, get fatter I guess. I don’t know. I’m going to be in the best shape when I get older. I’m not trying to put fat on. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

I have heard a lot of athletes in strength say it’s actually easier for them to drop weight and lean out when they’re a little bit older. It could be they’ve built more muscle mass, or they’re just better aware of dieting and more in tune with their bodies. I’ve heard most people say as a master’s athlete, dropping a weight class is much easier for them.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

Yep. I’ve heard that too, and I’ve seen it.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Let’s talk about what a normal day — I obviously know you’re getting back into training now — what does a normal day look like for you in your responsibilities at work, in the army but also…How does that impact your training schedule? Take us through your Tuesday.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I’ll get up about 6:00, 6:30. I’ll go for either a walk or a run depending on my schedule. Come back, eat my breakfast, all that stuff around 8:00 or so. That’s when I start work. Administrative stuff, army, kind of. You’ve got to still do your job. It’s not like I get to lift all day and eat all day. In the afternoon, I’ll usually get my workouts in. Early afternoon.

 

Two, three hours when I’m training hard, when I’m actually getting ready. That’s taking it easy. I’m not rushing, because I have the time. Then it’s eating every couple of hours. Even when you’re not putting on weight, it’s important to still eat throughout the day. I’ve been fasting with great athletes.

David TaoDavid Tao

What kind of bodyweight…What kind of caloric intake are you at on a daily basis these days?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

Right now, I’m down to 2800. Not working out for a couple of months, being laid off, I put on some unwanted weight. I’m trying to drop down a little bit. Just take my time with it though, no rush. I don’t want to go into such a caloric deficit I can’t live life. Right now, it’s about 2800. I think I’m taking in 220 protein, 75 grams of fat and another 250 in carbs or so.

David TaoDavid Tao

Got you. Training really hard, say you’re prepping, six weeks out from a comp. Obviously you have to be at a certain body weight threshold. Would that go up or stay around 2800?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

Oh, no. If I’m training for a 105 show, I can get away with about 4000 a day. Probably not be in the 240s. As long as it’s the right…As long as it’s not 4000 calories of pizza.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

[laughs] I’ve done that before. Let me tell you, it’s fun for a day. It’s great for a day.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

When I was putting on weight, I remember…I don’t know if you ever had the dessert, “Dirt?”

David TaoDavid Tao

No.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

It’s basically just whipped cream, cream cheese, Oreos.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

That sounds amazing.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

It is. It’s delicious. I had about 12 ounces of it every night before I went to bed to help put on weight.

David TaoDavid Tao

I could just smell that and probably put on weight.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

It worked. It tastes delicious and I love Oreos. I did it for four months straight and I never got tired of it.

David TaoDavid Tao

Oreos, whipped cream and cream cheese?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. It’s all mixed in and layered. It kind of looks like dirt.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

You’d just make it yourself? You’d just whip it up yourself?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. It’s a homemade thing. I grew up with it. My mom, I learned how to make it. It’s a lot of calories in the small portion. [laughs]

David TaoDavid Tao

 

It just sounds so delicious. It’s like, “Whipped cream and Oreos, cool.” Then you add in the cream cheese. You just add in this saturated fat.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

It just had some pudding involved, it’s very good.

David TaoDavid Tao

At that point the pudding-like lightens it up. You had a pudding in that it’s just break it, just light it up a little bit. That’s OK. I know what I’m going to do if I like what I to go to if I ever have to really bulk up, do that at night, and I gain weight like that. What is your normal training schedule look like?

 

I always like asking Strongman athletes just because everyone seems to have a slightly different split between training for the Strongman events, so training for specific events like the stone loads, the log press versus what might be considered kind of general powerlifting style training, spending a lot of time under the barbell. What is your kind of training split look like in a given week?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

I’m a big six-day week guy. I train six days a week. Obviously, not for intensity and I really don’t train events longer than six weeks out, I think it’s just a good way to get burnout. It’s a good way to start seeing some of your strength not…So my theory on events is strong.

 

It’s not training the implements doesn’t make you stronger because the competition is using your strength on the implements. You have to build the strength to use on the implements, so I focus a lot on building strength as opposed to being my new implements. If you do it long enough you know I know one of those. I don’t need to do that for 12 weeks.

 

I need to get my hands on it before a few times but what I really need to do is get my posterior chain strong. Below that stone, so that’s why I focus on it. It’s like the overhead press day. I do like a squat day. I’m a bit of a big believer in that strong bench squatting even though it’s not Strongman event. You should squat because if you have a big squat, you have a big everything else. This is how it works.

 

Have a press day, squat day, like a fun day. We’re just going in and do some bodybuilding weight. Tri’s and Bi’s, Tri’s to chase…

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Chase the pump?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Chase the pump and deadlifting. A bench day I’m a big believer in bench press even though it’s not a Strongman event. I just get tired of people like excuses. I think bench carries over, especially if you’re doing variations of it for press incline, stuff like that. Then Saturday I’ll do some events sometimes even…I don’t know like I just get on the yoga and have some fun. It doesn’t make sense yoga and fun but…

David TaoDavid Tao

I like doing yoga, it’s fun.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 

I like doing [inaudible 30:19] . I just…Then once I have competition six weeks out that’s why I focus in. Maybe I’ll take a day or two out and focus on events more.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

What are you doing as far as it sounds you’ve run a good bit compared to a lot of other Strongman athletes, what are you doing? Are you doing anything else for conditioning? Is that kind of built into your event-specific work when you do it?

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yeah. Once again, I’m blessed to be around some pretty good CrossFit athletes. I’ve been doing a lot about bike stuff, skier. I had them write up some blogs for me basically longer ones. I’m also mixing some shorter Salt Lake work because that’s really the catastrophe is as Strongman as that short bursts energy burst.

 

A good way to do that it’s like [inaudible 30:58] stuff like that is very good for our cardiovascular capacity. Carrying who’s [inaudible 31:04] cardio guys never should be. I’m sorry but you should have good cardio to help you manage your blood flow better at oxygen depletion for that event.

Anything the Strongman events or cardio, none of them are.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Also recovery between events if you’ve got four events at a day. That makes a lot of sense. Anthony, where’s the best place for people to keep up to date with you? The training you’re doing? You’re recovering now but also competitions that you’ll be training for in the future.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Yep. My Instagram is probably my main training one. @anthonyfuhrmanstrong is where to find me, so that’s it.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Not to be confused with Anthony Fuhrman weak, Anthony Fuhrman average. No, no this is Anthony Fuhrman strong only [inaudible 31:47] .

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

 [laughs] I didn’t want to put pro strong. I didn’t want to put pro I thought that was tacky. I don’t know. I wanted my mates from The Titan Games people, they said we have our name card, our angles so people search us. It was like Anthony from what I put up that Anthony Fuhrman pro. Anthony Fuhrman, you know, and I was like strong.

David TaoDavid Tao

 

Fair enough. You’ve got the accomplishments to back it up. Anthony thanks so much for joining us today. Awesome hearing from you. Best of luck in getting back to full training after the surgery, and really excited to see what you’re able to do in the coming years.

Anthony FuhrmanAnthony Fuhrman

Thank you, appreciate it [inaudible 32:17] .

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