190 lbs in 2013 & 230 lbs in 2015
190 lbs in 2013 & 230 lbs in 2015

Making Weight – Eating for Your Goals
Written by Bryan Miller

In 2013, I won the NorthWest Regional and while I was competing in the 2013 CrossFit Games, I discovered that I had some major holes in my fitness. I needed and wanted to change in order to become a better athlete. Standing next to my competition that summer, I realized I needed to be stronger, and definitely had to add muscle to my frame if I wanted to improve on my Games placing.

In 2013, I weighed 190lbs. My lack of muscle mass and strength was apparent during the Clean and Jerk ladder event where, after PRing my Clean and Jerk at a whopping 305lbs (not so whopping compared to most there), I was forced to sit on the grass watching most of my competition lift some impressively heavy weight that I was nowhere near lifting.

The silver lining of sitting out was that I was able to look at the successful Games competitors with similar physiques (6’2”) including the likes of Tommy Hackenbruck, Nate Schrader and Chad McKay. Guess what – all of those guys are between 210-220lbs with 8-10% body fat.

After the 2013 season, I decided to bulk; I added both strength and muscle mass to my frame. My 2014 goal was simple: gain weight. At the 2014 Regionals I knew that, thanks to my weight gain, I wouldn’t have the aerobic capacity required to qualify. But, I won three events and ended up 9th in the Southern California region. Between the 2013 and 2014 seasons, I put on another 10-15 lbs of bodyweight with probably 6-10 lbs of lean body mass. I also added 30 lbs to my snatch in just one year!

Progress yes, but enough? No.

The 2015 season started with a shoulder injury (this happened snowboarding) just before the Open. Knowing that I was not going to compete individually in 2015, I saw this as an opportunity to continue what I started in 2014. My 2015 goal was to get my legs as strong as possible. To achieve it, I ballooned up to 230 lbs. I had a legit and affectionate nickname of “Chocolate Milk Belly.”

After the 2015 Games, I decided I was ready to make a run at competing as an individual for the 2016 season. I modified my diet and started hitting conditioning again pretty hard at the end of the 2015 summer, and I ended up leaning out to about 210 lbs. I just recently PR’d my snatch at 290 lbs, so a lot of the strength that I gained is still there.

The lesson? Don’t be afraid to lose some of your “breathing” abilities; that will come back faster than you think, and the extra strength will pay dividends.




My Advice
#1: Find successful athletes who are roughly the same height and body type as you and use them as a guide for your weight to strength ratio.

#2: Understand that the road to the CrossFit Games isn’t alway a straight line. Gaining 40lbs (eating becomes a chore), skipping a year of competing and then getting back into super Open shape isn’t easy, but when your goals are clear then the path to get there is too. You will never make the Games if you look like a triathlete! Put on some muscle and maximize your potential!

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Derek Rampersaud
Derek Rampersaud
March 27, 2016 4:47 pm

I second Christopher’s thoughts. Would love to hear some more specific bulking advice as that’s much needed on my end as well.

Christopher Camp
Christopher Camp
March 26, 2016 8:34 am

do you have advice on how and what to eat to bulk heavy properly? or coaching i could pay for? i need this pretty badly.

Christopher Camp
Christopher Camp
March 26, 2016 2:54 pm

thanks mary. wonderful news.

April 7, 2016 9:27 am

Hey @disqus_JG1yShjhHX:disqus! Shoot an email to info@invictusathlete.com and they can guide you to someone who can help you with this!

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