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Tim "Temmmeeee" Butler is in the Grip Well!


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Tim Butler is in the Grip Well!

If the Grip Well is new to you, please quickly read the "Pinned" Post...(The Grip Well - What it is).  This is a great opportunity to get specific answers to specific questions...from an Elite Gripster.

The basics rules...

The thread is "open for questions" for only 7 days, but the "Answerer" has 14 days in which to finish answering questions, at which point the thread becomes part of history.

There will be no "open discussion" in "The Well Threads".  Only questions to the person in the well and responses by the Answerer.

The Answerer will have the ability to answer the questions during this 14 day period even though the thread will be closed after 7 days(Wannagrip will enable this ability).

Afterwards, this entire thread will become an excellent resource for all interested in training (especially Gripsport).  Former Gripsters in "The Well" have left invaluable nuggets of information that can "shorten the way" for those on their way up the Grip Ladder.  I'm sure Tim's entry will be no different in this regard.  Get your questions posted before Sunday, 10/08/2023.

The Grip Well is once again...OPEN.

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Tim, what is your thumb/hand stretching routine for blobs? 
Thanks!

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What paths have you gone down that were dead ends? Could be anything: training methods, bad advice, certain implements, etc. 

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1 hour ago, KristyC said:

What advice do you have for someone brand-new to grip strength endeavors based on your mistakes and successes along the way?

I think avoiding setbacks is important. Here are the 3 things that set me back the most.

1. Overtraining with too much volume and frequency. I find less volume with higher frequency helps me make better progress.

2. Not working the wrist extensors, which causes tendonitis flare-ups. Those have set me back for long periods of time, and I got a nasty one just few months into gripper training. So extensor band (rubber bands) work pretty much daily, with some sets of high rep/low weight reverse curls and reverse wrist curls throughout the week.

3. Continuing to train when I feel my skin ready to tear. Skin tears happen, especially in the beginning. And when it does happen, it can take up to 2 weeks to heal. And if you get back to things before it's fully healed, there's a good chance it'll just tear again. Now, if i see it's getting flakey and tender, I'll stop that exercise and let the area recover for a day or 2 (and apply hand cream like O'Keefe's Working Hands).

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1 hour ago, matek said:

Tim, what is your thumb/hand stretching routine for blobs? 
Thanks!

I don't really do stretching other than putting my hands over blobs. These days, if I'm trying to lift a challenge blob, I'll do some isometric holds (not trying to lift) on those blobs after trying to stretch my hand as much around it as possible. After a few, it starts to feel more loose and then I'll try and lift the blob. I use my other hand to help "set" the blob in my hand as well as tilt/my bodyweight to get maximum stretch.

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18 minutes ago, Cannon said:

What paths have you gone down that were dead ends? Could be anything: training methods, bad advice, certain implements, etc. 

One would be just training with too much volume. Grip can be addictive but, over the years I've learned that sometimes less is more. It can be different for everyone but, in my personal experience, I find like 5-6 "working sets" is all i need in a session. But i aim for about 5 sessions per week. I found when i was having like 10 or even more working sets in each session, my strength was pretty stagnant. But again, we are all different.

The other thing would be "spreading yourself too thin". There are countless implements out there and a lot of grip enthusiasts want to try them all. But I think it's important to choose a core 4 or 5 and stick mainly to those. Unless you're training for an upcoming comp. I've been all over the place with implements and when was training a bunch of different ones during the same time period, I made little to no progress. 

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Hi, Tim, sorry in advance for all the questions 😅

 

You mentioned you train with high frequency and low volume, would you mind going in depth? Possibly sharing your weekly routine or basically explain, how you approach your training?

Also, can you explain which grip lifts affect each other the most, which are better done together and such? For example: thick bar, pinch, grippers, bending, vertical bar, wrist work, how would you arrange these to make the most out of them?

 

Do you ever go to complete failure or do you find that counterproductive?

 

Do you train different grip lifts in different ways frequency and reps wise? 

 

Do you have any cues (mental notes) for each type of grip lift? An example would be doing a squat imagining you're doing an explosive jump.

 

Do you periodise your training or do you train pretty much the same intensity week in week out?

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1) Do you have a favorite non-grip implement exercise for grip training (only requires a bar &/or plates)?

2) What is your current favorite grip specific implement? Has it changed over the course of your training? 

3) Inspired by the weight transformation. Drop some nutritional knowledge on us! Please?

Edited by Harrison
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3 hours ago, smaikelzas said:

Hi, Tim, sorry in advance for all the questions 😅

 

You mentioned you train with high frequency and low volume, would you mind going in depth? Possibly sharing your weekly routine or basically explain, how you approach your training?

Also, can you explain which grip lifts affect each other the most, which are better done together and such? For example: thick bar, pinch, grippers, bending, vertical bar, wrist work, how would you arrange these to make the most out of them?

 

Do you ever go to complete failure or do you find that counterproductive?

 

Do you train different grip lifts in different ways frequency and reps wise? 

 

Do you have any cues (mental notes) for each type of grip lift? An example would be doing a squat imagining you're doing an explosive jump.

 

Do you periodise your training or do you train pretty much the same intensity week in week out?

 

  1. After warmup sets, I usually do 3-5 working rep sets. I prefer heavy triples or doubles that aren't max effort, but not easy. After those sets I usually do a couple 7-10 second holds. I like mixing reps with time under tension. Usually every other week, I'll do some closer to max effort singles instead of the holds. This is for pretty much all grip lifts, but i do more heavy singles with vertical lifts because i feel honing in on technique with high effort weight on those lifts is very important for consistently hitting high #''s. Weekly routine can vary depending on what's going on outside of grip and how recovered I'm feeling. I don't have a solid structure that I am constantly sticking to.

  2. I find mainly thick bar affects my crush. I spread out those days a good amount or do crush beforehand. I find pinch affects things the least and I pinch more frequently than the other lifts (this includes multiple widths and blobs). I seem to gravitate toward putting pinch with crush and vertical with thick bar. But if I'm planning a near max effort day, I'll only choose one type for that session. Wrist work is usually on it's own too, but I don't do that as consistently due to some issues I have.

  3. Going to complete failure might fatigue me a bit more and affect the next day's session, but I do often mess around with feats after my normal training. I “try” not to do too many attempts, though. Every so often, I'll test a true max if it's been a while.

  4. For frequency, I train pinch the most. It feels like it's the least taxing so I feel fresh sooner than other lifts. Again, I base a lot of my training on how I feel, which can vary week to week. If I'm feeling beat up, I'll choose rest over forcing a session. The way I train grip lifts are pretty similar except for and grippers and vertical lifts, where I do more heavy singles. That's because I think it's important to get the feel for how the heavy weight of a vertical lift will move as it leaves the ground. Those lifts are so technical IMO. And I also think it's important to get the feel of setting a very heavy (relatively speaking) gripper, because a good set is the most important part for closing a high effort gripper.

  5. I don't really have cues. But after years of training, I just know what “feels right” when I'm getting my hand placement and body positioning set. And that'll vary person to person. So practice makes perfect!

  6. It depends if I'm training for a comp and starting on implements that I haven't used in a while. I'll also decrease intensity if I am feeling particularly beat up. I don't really have a super specified approach.

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2 hours ago, Harrison said:

1) Do you have a favorite non-grip implement exercise for grip training (only requires a bar &/or plates)?

2) What is your current favorite grip specific implement? Has it changed over the course of your training? 

3) Inspired by the weight transformation. Drop some nutritional knowledge on us! Please?

1. Not really, I have a lot of grip equipment that I use regularly, so I don't do much outside of that. I'm not a big fan of plate pinching because my skin tears very easily, but I still to do it every so often. Other than that, I do double overhand no hook grip deadlifts during my warmups on deadlift days.

2. Definitely thomas inch style dumbbells. I've just always been a fan of the challenge and fatigue I feel after training with them. It's been that way since getting my 1st bell. I like most vertical handles too but I think that's just because they're my strongest lifts.

3. Glad to be some inspiration! The biggest part of losing the weight was just consistently using the MyFitnessPal app and making sure I wasn't consuming too many calories and hitting my protein goal. I stick to a high protein diet (30-35%), especially during a cutting cycle. Protein is generally more satiating and your body burns ~25% of the calories of protein consumed just by digesting it (but don't include that in your counting). It's also important for retaining muscle as you get deeper into a cut. I'm able to function well without a lot of carbs, but everyone is different. I don't do keto or anything like that, but can get away with as little as 120g per day. It's usually more, though. To hit my protein and stay within my calories, I eat a lot of lean meats, white fish, and egg whites. It may seem like a lot of work, so you can ease into this and clean things up as you go. Cutting out alcohol and beverages that contain calories can be extremely helpful. Also, be conscious of condiment usage. A lot of people overlook that and will put loads of ketchup, bbq sauce, mayo, etc on their food and it can add up very quickly. A little bit can still go a pretty long way. I LOVE to add hot sauce to most of my food. If you're also a fan of it, just know that some hot sauces have sugar and some are very high in sodium. So always check labels!

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As your feats videos gain in popularity, how do you feel about being a role model/source of inspiration to people who want to try the kind of things they see you do? 

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3 hours ago, SarahChappelow said:

As your feats videos gain in popularity, how do you feel about being a role model/source of inspiration to people who want to try the kind of things they see you do? 

I think it's pretty amazing! I never imagined so many people coming across my videos, let alone having so much interest in the grip stuff. It's been surreal! I have always been a pretty shy/reserved person (this was the 1st forum I ever joined and it took months of hesitation to finally make an account when I was new to the sport), so it was a bit overwhelming at first. But it has been helping me break even more out of my shell at a very quick rate. And the fact that I've been inspiring others get into the sport, as well as get into general health and fitness, has been beyond rewarding. I didn't think I'd ever get exposure like this, I'm not even sure if I really wanted it to this degree. I was just having fun with my feats these last 7+ years. But now that it's here, my goal is to be motivational and add some positivity/lightheartedness to people's lives. Particularly the younger crowd and those who have had struggles similar to mine. There is so much negativity out there these days and social media can really mess with people's heads. So I want to be a little bit of light in the darkness. Even if that just means being my strange, silly self and posting feats of grip strength.

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Hey Timman. Thanks for taking to time to do this.  Got a few for yah...

1. Do you document your workouts (besides your insane Instagram feats)...and if so, do you program from them?  Or has your whole process organically grown out of "feel"?

2. I understand your body kind of subconsciously guides your training, but do you do any conscious biofeedback testing before or during workouts?

3. Your LBH/Anvil strength is off the charts. Did you do anything specific to gain this world class strength, or was it simply a matter of gravitating towards a lift you had an affinity for.

4. Like many people, I struggle with life stress and turn towards unhealthy coping mechanisms (food, alcohol, etc.) In your body transformation, did you develop any personal habits that kept you on the horse or allowed you to get back on it quicker?

5. How do you train for the bigger competitions (King Kong, Nats, etc)? How do you taper you your workouts leading up to it? Do you change your diet at all?

Thanks!

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What's your least favorite grip feat that you're good at? 

 

What's your favorite grip feat that you're "bad" at? 

You're from central New Jersey so I gotta ask (again)  pork roll or Taylor ham? 

 

 

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6 hours ago, anwnate said:

Hey Timman. Thanks for taking to time to do this.  Got a few for yah...

1. Do you document your workouts (besides your insane Instagram feats)...and if so, do you program from them?  Or has your whole process organically grown out of "feel"?

2. I understand your body kind of subconsciously guides your training, but do you do any conscious biofeedback testing before or during workouts?

3. Your LBH/Anvil strength is off the charts. Did you do anything specific to gain this world class strength, or was it simply a matter of gravitating towards a lift you had an affinity for.

4. Like many people, I struggle with life stress and turn towards unhealthy coping mechanisms (food, alcohol, etc.) In your body transformation, did you develop any personal habits that kept you on the horse or allowed you to get back on it quicker?

5. How do you train for the bigger competitions (King Kong, Nats, etc)? How do you taper you your workouts leading up to it? Do you change your diet at all?

Thanks!

1. It's mainly just how I feel. I do keep #'s in my head but, oftentimes, when one type of lift is up, another will be down. But everything comes up in the grand scheme of things over time. Like usually when my thick bar is feeling great, my pinch will be down a bit, and vice versa.

2. Not usually with normal training on implements, but I sort of do that with challenge items like inch dumbbells and blobs.

3. I find those lifts to be extremely technical, and every mm of hand placement and body positioning/angles matter. I try to hone in on that "perfect setup" (which is why I prefer more very heavy singles with those lifts). I feel like people can almost always find a slightly better setup to lift more weight. I still have trouble replicating my ideal setup every time, especially if it's been a week or more since training on a particular vertical lift. 

4. Staying on the horse can be difficult, but it really will come down to wanting it badly enough and sticking to your convictions. That said, there will always be slip-ups. We are human, after all. So when there is a slip-up, it's very important not to overreact and blow things out of proportion. Because that will lead to a downward spiral and truly set you back. Take a step back and a deep breath, and remember that this slip-up hasn't destroyed everything you've worked for. Even if it feels that way in the moment. Tomorrow (or even right after the slip-up) is a new chance to get dialed in again and keep working toward your goals. It's been a couple years now since I've had a bad one, but I have had slip-ups that led to week+ binges, and it's never worth it. You just have to keep telling yourself "it's not the end of the world, and I've got this!" Granted, you don't want to use that as a justification to have slip-ups more often than you should. In the beginning of my journey, I had to separate myself from my main temptations as much as possible. And after a while, I was able to slowly allow more exposure to them and I didn't feel nearly as much temptation when I did. But there will always be some temptation.

5. I usually test a max about 2 weeks out and then have lighter sessions in the 7-10 days leading up. I try to really analyze my hand placement and technique and replicate what feels like the ideal setup for each rep. Sometimes I overthink them though, and that can mess me up. Still trying to become a better competitor lol. For diet, I just eat like 500 calories more a few days leading up. Mostly added carbs.

Edited by temmmeeee
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4 hours ago, stranger said:

What's your least favorite grip feat that you're good at? 

 

What's your favorite grip feat that you're "bad" at? 

You're from central New Jersey so I gotta ask (again)  pork roll or Taylor ham? 

 

 

Tough questions!!

1. I guess very big blobs like Blobzilla and the Napalm Blob. Conquering them was extremely satisfying, but it's a very uncomfortable stretch for my hand. And, if I do too many attempts, it really bothers my fingers. I am still going to go for the Blobfather, but nothing bigger than that.

2. Plate hub feats. They just seem so badass to me. But I struggle even just to lift many 45's out there 😅

3. When I was young, my mom would always refer to it as Taylor ham when we had it. But since around my teen years, I've referred to it as pork roll. There was a short period of time when I thought they were 2 different things.

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How does one get abs like those? 😂 but Seriously, is it mostly nutrition or a combo of training that involves something else besides grip sport?

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41 minutes ago, Tammy said:

How does one get abs like those? 😂 but Seriously, is it mostly nutrition or a combo of training that involves something else besides grip sport?

Lol it's mostly just nutrition and getting to a pretty low body fat %. I have been very meticulous when it comes to my caloric intake for the last 4 years and do a lot of powerwalking for my cardio.

I used to directly train core (only a few sets per session) 2-3 times a week, but it's been a couple years since I've done that. I feel like squats and deadlifts work the core pretty well. I also feel a lot of core engagement with awkward mismatched grip lifts like a blob and inch combo and other things along those lines. One hand suitcase style lifts too.

But it really is mainly just being lean. And everyone will have different abdominal muscle inserts which also plays a factor with how abs will look.

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15 minutes ago, temmmeeee said:

Lol it's mostly just nutrition and getting to a pretty low body fat %. I have been very meticulous when it comes to my caloric intake for the last 4 years and do a lot of powerwalking for my cardio.

I used to directly train core (only a few sets per session) 2-3 times a week, but it's been a couple years since I've done that. I feel like squats and deadlifts work the core pretty well. I also feel a lot of core engagement with awkward mismatched grip lifts like a blob and inch combo and other things along those lines. One hand suitcase style lifts too.

But it really is mainly just being lean. And everyone will have different abdominal muscle inserts which also plays a factor with how abs will look.

Fortunately for me (but not for you lol), ab definition does not correlate in the slightest with one's RGC gripper close ...

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