Friday Jams: Bushwood

I was grocery shopping yesterday and as I entered the produce section looking for good Games snacks, it hit me that I’m shopping for the first Highland Games of the season. Wait…whut? Uhhhhhhh, exsqueeze me, where did the off-season go? Really, where did it go?

I swear it was just a couple of weeks ago I threw in the Texas heat among the lion roars and enjoyed one of the best post-Games meals I’ve had at the food truck court. Srsly, it’s also the last time I’ve tossed the Sheaf so tomorrow should be interesting. But here we are, Games 1, The Shammies.

The good news is that we’re supposed to have the warm spring sun beating down on us, errr, I mean everyone else NOT inside a horse coliseum throwing in a wind tunnel with about a foot of dirt as our trigs. Heh. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. For as much dirt as there is, this is the Games where we blow that winter stink off our throws and start to get a feel of how our off-season went. I’ve had a chance to throw a couple of times and started to log what I need to work on the next few weeks before the next one.

Our first half of the season is very tame but incredibly exciting this year. After tomorrow’s Games, I look forward to the Oz man being home for Spring Break; kids birthdays (all of them, Oz on the 3rd and twins on the 7th…for 16 years now I have been completely broke by April 8th. Heh); Easter and then Hawaii. Yup, I get to throw in Hawaii. The Motherland.

See, sometimes I get these ideas and I say to my hubs, ‘I have an idea’ and he’s cute enough to try not to say “uh oh.” We were hoping to take Zandra on  a spring break to Amsterdam but with some schedule and job changes, that didn’t work out. I’ve spoken enough about her tough start to 2015 and so I thought, if we have enough miles, maybe she and I should try to take a trip. Well, miles worked out and it just so happens, since she works for a Hyatt that we get a bangin’ rate in Waikiki (I’ve already told her she can never quit this job. Ever.) She was able to talk to her BFF (and yes, these two amazingly silly young ladies will most likely be BFF’s forever) into coming too so we meet up with her at the Minneapolis airport and I couldn’t be more thrilled.

To be around their energy, yes, it’s exhausting but it’s also exhilarating. I adore them, let’s see if I say that after sharing a hotel room with them for 5 days. Hee. Anyways, these girls work harder than most real adults I know and to be able to help them chill in paradise for a few days makes this mom’s heart glow. The bonus to this whole trip is that two of the German throwers, Michaela and Petra will be there throwing too!! It will be amazing. I’ve never been to Oahu and even though schedules prevent my Auntie from making the jaunt over from Maui, I’ll still get to wave to her from the beach.

I have a backyard Games at the end of April ala Jason Clevenger, yeah! Bigg guy is bailing for the 3 Floyds Dark Lord Day, something he’s been looking forward to for about a year now. We take a break in May, instead of hitting Merl’s May Games, we’re taking the Oz man for his Birthday surprise trip to Indiana to participate in a WWII reenactment (some boys dream of playing in the big leagues, this is HIS big leagues and we are SO thankful to Craig Morehead for helping us out with it.)


And in June, we go to Iceland. We just got the go ahead this week and I think we’re still both in shock at the thought of not only traveling to a place that has been on top of our “musts” for years now, but getting a chance to throw there. We are beyond excited about it and in some weird way, I’m cautious of saying too much in case it makes me wake up from this “we’re going to go throw in Iceland” dream. We’ll miss our hometown Games but oh well. Ya know, Iceland.

And that’s it. We’re going to try to stay home bound until late July. We can hopefully meet up with our Scottish flat mates this summer in Minnesota but other than that, practice; rest; and enjoy summer. Last year, I entered the critical second half of the season exhausted and sore and I want to avoid that this year plus ya know…older.

A bunch of Games peeps have already kicked off their season, many others are getting underway this weekend too. Women’s World Championships are this weekend down in Phoenix, strong throws Katie and Jessica and save travels to all!

So here we are, 2015 Games season. Really? Really. FoShizzle.  We don’t know what this season has in store for us but hopefully it will be safe for all with PR’s here and there and of course, a shit ton of fun (did you think I’d make it through a post without cussing? Come’on!)

You’re a lot of woman, ya know that? Yeah, wanna make 14 dollars… the HARD way? 

Al Czervik

About tosabarbell

For training opportunities at tosabarbell, call or text Juli at 320-296-9313. e-mail to At tosabarbell, I build relationships cultivated in a strength and learning environment. There is no 12 week magic pill program to strength but rather a lifetime commitment to be the very best and most useful human you can be. tosabarbell is a private, home grown gym with three lifting platforms; squat rack; prowlers; throwing implements; bars, bumpers and everything else needed for an effective strength and conditioning program. Straightforward barbell programming including the Olympic lifts; sound (read: not fancy bullshit) diet advance for weight gain or loss; and strong coaching will ensure you will meet your goals such as becoming stronger, more explosive, and better conditioned. I have been coaching teams and athletes for over 30 years. I grew up participating in various sports at various levels but was always drawn to those that require strength training. I have multiple local, national, and world records in the sports of Weightlifting and Highland Games Heavy Events as well as a combined total of 5 World Championships. My 5 years of training and coaching under Mark Rippetoe provided a wide range of influence from some of the top strength & conditioning and throwing coaches in the country. I will strongly encourage tosabarbell athletes to compete (and prepare you to do so.) However, tosabarbell is also for those who wish to be stronger and go through life feeling better. Matt WanAt is a retired Professional Strongman who competed frequently with Strongman Champions League in Europe. He played a year of D1 football with Iowa before concentrating on his Chemical Engineering degree in Iowa City. He is a native of Wauwatosa and still remains a staunch supporter of Tosa East. This blog will be a mixture of strength notes, coaching and nutrition tips, personal shit; bacon delicacies, and a whole lot of fun.
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4 Responses to Friday Jams: Bushwood

  1. Dwood says:

    Hey you don’t update you’re training log on nasgaweb anymore,boycott or something?

    • tosabarbell says:

      I don’t anymore. I use the database on NASGA but the forum got to be a negative experience. Most of my training has switched over to speed work, the Olympic lifts and throwing now anyway so it’s not very exciting. Hope your training is going well!

  2. Dwood says:

    Nice season opener in the shamrock games..good luck in 2015! Hopefully see you at MWC

    • tosabarbell says:

      Dan! I have a friend named Dave Wood down in Texas and assumed that’s who I was talking to;) Thanks so much, the Shammies are very special and Merl is in complete WMC mode. It’ll be amazing! I’m looking forward to meeting you and Teri in September and seeing her in action. Your family is never far off my thoughts. Much Aloha:)

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