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The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning by Zach Even-Esh
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The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning by Zach Even-Esh
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9.57 out of 10 (28 reviews)
Great training motivation
Rated 10/10
By Ben MarvinAustin, Texas, USA

This book is more that just a great manual that gives training tricks and sample programs, while it does include those things the part of this book that I found most helpful was Zach's insight into the realities of training. While most books are written focusing on ideal environment and…
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The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning

How to Get Stronger in the Gym & in Life Using the Training Secrets of the Athletic Elite

By Zach Even-Esh

Paperback 424 pages

Some of the world’s toughest—and most successful—men have endorsed Zach Even-Esh’s Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning as a must-have, go-to resource for developing the supreme athletic durability, multi-functional strength and spiritual fortitude they most prize…Men like JOE DE SENA, founder of The Spartan Race:

"At Spartan, we have always said the world needs a thorough encyclopedia on strength and conditioning. Whether it is our own athletes attending our races, moms, or even the elite special forces we speak to, everyone is looking for an edge. Zach's Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is exactly what today's society needs to build a stronger mind, body and life, just as we encourage here at Spartan.

The inspirational life lessons shared in this book along with these training methods are what make this book powerful and timeless. You owe it to yourself to read this book if you want to change your life."

And men like the warrior-athlete CDR MARK DIVINE, founder of SEALFIT and Unbeatable Mind, NYT bestselling author of 8 Weeks to SEALFIT and The Way of the SEAL:

"When it comes to functional strength and conditioning—old school style—Zach Even-Esh has been there, done that. Zach is a master at developing young athletes who not only become world class at their sport, but also develop the strength of character to be successful at whatever they choose in life. I highly recommend this book, as it will open your eyes to reality-based training."

Who else wants to bust beyond their current athletic limitations—and transform themselves physically, mentally and spiritually? The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning shows you how...

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How a Once-Mediocre Athlete Fought Through Loss, Career-Ending Injury and Emotional Breakdown—to Become
The Inspirational Coach of a New Breed of Ultra-Tough, Champion-Minded Athletes…

Some of the world’s toughest—and most successful—men have endorsed Zach Even-Esh’s Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning as a must-have, go-to resource for developing the supreme athletic durability, multi-functional strength and spiritual fortitude they most prize…

Men like JOE DE SENA, founder of The Spartan Race:

"At Spartan, we have always said the world needs a thorough encyclopedia on strength and conditioning. Whether it is our own athletes attending our races, moms, or even the elite special forces we speak to, everyone is looking for an edge. Zach's Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is exactly what today's society needs to build a stronger mind, body and life, just as we encourage here at Spartan.

The inspirational life lessons shared in this book along with these training methods are what make this book powerful and timeless. You owe it to yourself to read this book if you want to change your life."

And men like the warrior-athlete CDR MARK DIVINE, founder of SEALFIT and Unbeatable Mind, NYT bestselling author of 8 Weeks to SEALFIT and The Way of the SEAL:

Mark Divine"When it comes to functional strength and conditioning—old school style—Zach Even-Esh has been there, done that. Zach is a master at developing young athletes who not only become world class at their sport, but also develop the strength of character to be successful at whatever they choose in life. I highly recommend this book, as it will open your eyes to reality-based training."

Or take this from AJ ROBERTS, 2x All-Time Powerlifting World Record Holder (who else wants to squat 1,205 lbs, bench 905 lbs and deadlift 815 lbs?):

AJ Roberts"From the minute I began reading I was completely captivated. The mixture of life lessons along with powerful workout information is what makes this book truly phenomenal and one that belongs on any strength enthusiast’s book shelf."

And then there’s the legendary author of the world’s #1 bodyweight exercise book Convict Conditioning, PAUL WADE, who weighs in with this praise:

"If there’s a hardcore, super-functional tool or tactic for maximizing strength, speed or muscle, it’s here—bodyweight, kettlebells, barbells, tires, ropes, sandbags, kegs and sleds. The bodyweight section alone is worth more than the price of the book—it’s a ‘must read’ for calisthenics fans. What interests me particularly is Zach’s emphasis on bodyweight for athleticism and conditioning, as well as raw strength.

There are dozens of very, very powerful drills and unique approaches here. I’ve no doubt this book will be considered the bible of old school athletic strength training over the coming decades."

Or how about revered strength coach and powerlifting world champion MARTY GALLAGHER’s ringing endorsement:

Marty Gallagher"This big book has a lot of soul. I love the mix of bodybuilding and wrestling and power training and farm-boy strength combined with the sincere earnestness of his ongoing quest for continual physical improvement. I love his crazed, gonzo approach towards fitness and strength and functionality. Zach has thrown a big lasso around a hell-of-a-lot of athletic modes.

Zach has transformed himself, and ergo, he knows of what he speaks. Best of all, most important of all, he gets irrefutable results for his people. I love the functional, uber-fit physiques of Zach’s students, the final finished products. In one word, Zach, Awesome!"

How Did "The Weakest Kid on The Block" and "The Worst Athlete on The Team" Become One of The Most Respected Strength and Conditioning Coaches in America?

What is SO remarkable here is that Zach began his athletic life as the weakest kid on the block and a perennial failure in team sports…

Zach was crippled by self-doubt, low self-esteem, depression…and career-ending injuries…

Zach got sidetracked by false prophets trumpeting bodybuilding lies—that WEAKENED him and had him beaten down over and over again by stronger, more agile, TOUGHER opponents…

Faced by all these failures Zach could easily have thrown in the towel and contented himself with a comfortable, average role as a so-so athlete and so-so trainer…

But Zach had a dream and a vision that was more powerful than the army of setbacks and the bouts of despair…

Zach NEVER QUIT in his relentless quest for athletic supremacy…the inner fire burned strong…the spirit stayed steady…

Zach continued to persevere and struggle, whatever the odds and continued setbacks…

Things Changed When He Was Told That He Was Put on This Earth to Make People STRONG!

Then one fateful day—thanks to a special mentor—it all came together for Zach: his mission on the planet was to make people stronger and tougher.

And that Mission has become the Reality

What do you get when you mix 25 plus years of training experience along with the pain of regret?

You get a coach who goes through hell and high water to ensure you don't experience the same painful mistakes he made in training and life.

And you get a book that inspires the hell out of you and forces you to dig deep to discover WHO you truly are and WHAT you're all about, both in the gym AND in life.

And THIS is why so many world-renowned strength experts, master coaches, bestselling fitness authors, world champion lifters and some of THE toughest men of the planet are giving two very big thumbs up to Zach’s The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning.

THIS is why DAN JOHN, coach extraordinaire and author of the acclaimed Never Let Go says:

Dan John"I felt like I was back in 1964 thumbing through Strength and Health getting the answers to strength: it's the basics, it's hard work and there is a funny story that needs to be told to get me to understand the simplicity of it all. You get every tool, every idea and practically every mistake as Zach takes us on his journey. The sections on elite athletes are told as clearly as possible and I think I coached ‘Strong and Useless,’ too. I really enjoyed that section as we all face the same obstacles as we try to figure how to translate the relatively straight line in the weight room into the chaos of the athletic field. Zach gives you these answers.

It's a hands-on book from a hands-on coach and you get the feeling you know everybody he is talking about in each story. The book needs a two-way radio: ‘Yeah, I know that guy!’ It's a great book that will open up a few eyes and maybe a few windows in your training. Enjoy."

And why JASON FERRUGIA, author of Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0 exclaimed:

Jason Ferrugia"It got me so fired up I couldn't sit still. It's honest, insightful, touching, and inspirational. Zach's passion bleeds through every page and will make you want to not only train harder, but man-up in every aspect of your life."

Or for TOM VENUTO, author of Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle to write in:

Tom Venuto"No book combines the old-school methods of strength training and muscle-building with the new science of performance enhancement and athletic conditioning better than The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning. And no author delivers his knowledge with more heart and passion than Zach Even-Esh.

This 'bible of strength' is an inspiring must-read for every athlete, coach and fitness enthusiast of any age who wants to help themselves or others get an edge on the competition and become bigger, stronger, faster and tougher."

Who CAN You Trust to Show You What Will REALLY Work—To Get Stronger, Tougher And Way More Powerful?

The modern fitness landscape has exploded with a bewildering array of quick-fix methods, shiny gizmos and training programs of every imaginable type—advocating this or that method for attaining a superior athleticism.

But what really will work for YOU? Who can YOU trust? Who should YOU listen to and believe in?

As you can see, many experts’ bet for THE MAN to listen to and trust when it comes to knowing what to do, for YOU to succeed athletically, is Zach Even-Esh.

Why? Because over the last 25 years Zach has literally tried EVERYTHING when it comes to the Holy Grail of supreme toughness, dominant strength and enduring physical power.

And because, in those 25 years, Zach made as many mistakes in his training of himself and others as he has had dramatic successes. Mistakes you now don’t have to make…

Zach documents ALL of his mistakes—to ram home once and for all what you absolutely should NOT be doing if you want to be truly tough, truly competitive and animalistically strong…

Zach then provides you with every real-world, results-tested, training method that he guarantees to put massive muscle on your bones and power-pack you with unstoppable energy.

Even more importantly, Zach teaches that YOU are unique. YOU are different. There is a program for YOU in particular that sits waiting for you. Zack gives YOU the keys for you to discover the formulas and training protocols that will truly work for YOU, specifically. Zach helps YOU discover the all-important "Why?" question—and its personalized answer—that is crucial to figure out, if you are to develop the transformational mindset…

Whether you're a coach, a parent of an athlete, an avid exercise fan or someone who needs direction in the realm of strength, this book can become your go-to Bible for kicking ass and taking names.

Flip it open to any page and get inspired and educated to take your success to the next level…

Prepare to punch your inner laziness in the face because this book will reignite your passion for developing strength like never before...

Listen to what these other fellow trainers, coaches, authors, athletes and experts have to add about the inspirational life stories, passion and the super-practical training information you’ll get with Zach’s masterwork:

Billy Beck III"If you are a fitness or strength professional or a serious fitness enthusiast then you must own this book. Read it cover to cover again and again. Over the last 20 years I have interviewed and trained over 1,000 trainers and coaches and I can tell you that there is a powerful, not so obvious difference between a good coach and an OUTSTANDING coach. However, knowing this will transform your life and those you help massively. This is what you will discover in The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning. It is worth its weight in gold."—BILLY BECK III, MET-Rx World's Best Personal Trainer, Personal Fitness Professional Magazine Trainer of the Year, International Presenter, Author, Lean and Mean: Fat Burning Secrets

Dr Chris Hardy"The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning should be in the library of every trainer and coach. Zach Even-Esh has filled his book with the kind of wisdom that can only be obtained from years in the trenches making mistakes and learning from them. Zach outlines techniques and tactics to build not only useable strength, but well-rounded athleticism that enhances performance and provides resilience from injury. The ultimate report card for a coach is results, not knowledge of theory. Zach gets results for real people."—CHRIS HARDY, DO, MPH CSCS, Physician, trainer, co-author Strong Medicine

Danny Kavadlo"Zach's wisdom is both bold and heartwarming at the same time. Besides a touching, often humorous story, what Zach provides is an incredibly comprehensive manual which details not only strength and conditioning, but also speed training, muscle building, feats of strength and more. Zach provides years worth of material in this fantastic resource."—DANNY KAVADLO, author, Diamond-Cut Abs

Coach McKenna"I have been a strength coach for over 30 years and this by far is one of the most powerful strength training books I have read. It’s a tool that every strength coach, new or old, every person who trains new or old, should have in their toolbox. This book will be required reading for all my trainers and athletes from this point on."—COACH JOHN MCKENNA, Athletic Performance Director, Notre Dame High School, Lawrenceville, NJ

Matt Wichlinski"Everything you need to know about getting stronger and mentally tough is covered in detail in this book. If you are looking for a shortcut, or don't have a true desire to work as hard as possible, this book is not for you. This book is all about embracing the effort, doing your best, inspiring everyone around you, and being the consummate leader of your social circle, all while becoming the strongest version of yourself.

This book is loaded with inspirational stories and informational programs that work. Zach's training methods are intense and his passion is unparalleled; if you want to succeed, this book is for you."—MATT WICHLINSKI, Strength Coach, WWE Performance Center

Jon Bruney"Zach Even-Esh throws down the gauntlet—challenging you to live strong, think strong, and be strong. The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning inspires and educates allowing you to elevate your training both mentally and physically. The information in this book will not only make you a better athlete, but also a better person."—JON BRUNEY, author, Neuro-Mass

Mike Gillette"This book clearly speaks to the duality of strength training; the internal and the external. Zach first provides a compelling rationale for the pursuit of strength and then delivers, as promised in the title, an encyclopedic manual on exactly how to attain it.

Zach covers the mindset and modalities of true strength building. It's all here; barbell and dumbbell work, odd-object lifts, calisthenics, kettlebells, ropes and running. I've seen Zach in action with his athletes. He is ‘for real’ and so are his methods. If you want to coach yourself or others to greatness, you need this book!"—MIKE GILLETTE, Performance Coach, Member Martial Arts Masters Hall-of-Fame

Joe Di Stefano"Zach Even-Esh’s Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning provides a very resourceful guide to proper training and most importantly a call to action that you never miss a workout again! Zach guides you through how to train hard whether you have the luxury of a gym or the good fortune of a stone, a friend, a playground, a picnic table, a tire, a sandbag, a keg, or—heck —the truck that’s parked in your driveway."—JOE DI STEFANO, BS, CSCS, PES, CES, Co-creator, Spartan Race’s SGX Certification

Mike Bledsoe"Zach not only shares his deep knowledge of training in his book but also shares his journey on how he got there. This is the book I wish I had read in my early years of training and am now ecstatic to have it on my bookshelf. I 100% recommend this book to anyone desiring to find their passion. Zach is a true inspiration and I am honored to also call him my friend."—MICHAEL BLEDSOE, CEO, Barbell Shrugged Podcast, Faction Strength & Conditioning, CrossFit Memphis

We Make These BIG PROMISES About What You Can Expect to Gain From The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning—And We Intend to OVER-DELIVER On Those Promises!

And thus we have The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning…which is exactly that: an encyclopedia of what NOT to do and what you CAN do to utterly transform yourself physically, mentally and spiritually (because they all go together).

So, if you get Zach’s Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning and YOU WORK IT (yes, WORK IT) then Zach makes these promises to you:

  • Yes, you CAN transform yourself into a superior physical monster
  • Yes, you CAN be the Total Athletic Package, with a farm boy’s all-around power and a gladiator’s whipcord resilience…
  • Yes, you CAN have the mental toughness, durability and spiritual fortitude that would do a hardened Spec Ops proud…
  • Yes, you CAN develop the steely, never-ever-quit endurance capacity of a true champion…
  • Yes, you CAN be fully prepped to overcome the rigors and uncertainties of your combat-sport—or whatever else gets thrown at you…
  • Yes, you CAN combine the horsepower of a Ferrari with the grinding strength of a tow truck…
  • Yes, you CAN turn into an on-field terror—agile, mobile and hyper-hostile…
  • Yes, you CAN be beach-god-beautiful—yet still be stacked with righteous cords of "GO! GO! GO!" hyper-powerful, hyper-functional muscle…
  • Yes, you CAN make relentless progress in your physical prowess—without sacrificing your health…
  • Yes, you CAN develop a tigrish self-confidence that guarantees you NEVER surrender to any set back or apparent obstacle…
  • Yes, you CAN have all of this—and a whole lot more—because master-athletic coach Zach Even-Esh, has already delivered on these promises to literally thousands of real-world athletes over the last 25 years…

Zach has spent over 25 years figuring out what REALLY works in the REAL world to be utterly devastating athletically. And he is ready to share ALL of this hard-won know-how with you…

Zach’s sole mission in life is to pass on to the world what truly does work to produce an EFFECTIVELY strong and powerful human being.

Be warned of all the nonsense—still woefully prevalent in the modern training world— that will cripple your hopes of ever being anything special athletically…taken from Zach’s own heart-breaking experiences. He made classic mistakes and spent bitter years as an also-ran rather than a winner—following false promises, faux science, shiny balls and dead-end paths.

You don’t have to make those same mistakes! Zach’s done the needless suffering for you. You can take his winning formulas now—his in-the-trenches, golden blueprints—and run with them…

Zach has done the real-world experimenting for you—with himself and countless thousands of hard-charging athletes. The mistakes have all been made. The useless methods have been discarded, the impurities burnt away. The fluff is gone. Pure training gold remains for you to take full advantage of…

Sometimes the truth can hit you like a 2 by 4 between the eyes. And that’s the kind of wisdom-truth that’ll hit you when you open up to Zach’s world…the world of the "soul athlete"…

How To Be a "Soul Athlete"—Can This Be You?

Punch a ticket to ride with Zach—and enter the exalted territory of the "Soul Athlete"…

"Soul Athletes" see the whole world as their physical-transformation playground. Doesn’t matter where you are—you work with what you got…trees, sand, tires, sledgehammers, kettlebells, barbells, ropes, trucks, sandbags, ocean, kegs, stones, sleds, bodyweight, free weights, training partners, playgrounds, scaffolding, park benches…whatever you can lift, pull, grind, push, run with, jump over, grab…

The soul athlete engages with his total environment with deep passion, for the love of it, for the blissful pain of it—and for the shear unadulterated FUN of it…

There can be no excuses in the life of the soul athlete because, well, there ARE no excuses! It’s ALL good!

So: if you want to plunge into the mystic pain and know the glory and the ecstasy of the soul athlete—you have definitely arrived at the right place. Zach’s Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is made-in-heaven-and-hell for you…the keys to the kingdom are right here for your taking…

And here’s a selection of special insider tips you’ll discover within The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning, any one of which might make the difference between success and failure:

  • Way too many wrestlers still make THIS huge mistake when training their sport…
  • Understanding the vital difference between beach muscles versus getting-the-job-done muscles…
  • How best to measure progress to ensure continual gains…
  • The 6 essentials you have to dial in for optimal progress…
  • Successful commitment comes from knowing exactly how to employ THIS strategy…
  • How to develop Farm Boy Strength—and wail on urban sissies…
  • THIS Gladiator-Maker formula will make you Master of the Beat Down…
  • Developing THIS is one of the biggest answers to dominating your competition…
  • How, when and why to break the rules—and come out on top…
Stone Deadlift
  • THESE patented combat-style circuits will help you outlast 99.97% of any athletes you’ll ever face
  • What it takes to succeed as a combat athlete
  • How to develop an indomitable strength in mind, body and spirit…
  • How "Science" can be the enemy of Progress—and kill your chances of making it big…
  • How training-rigidity can act like a wrecking ball on your athletic success
  • How to work with athletes in the real world—and continue to put winners on the map
  • How and why to identify and work on your weak points…
  • Are you strong and useless?—don’t be THIS guy!…
  • How to develop speed strength…
  • How listening better makes you a better coach…
  • Why your mind is your number 1 success determiner—and what to do about it…
  • How to thrive while others are quitting in droves…
  • How and why you need to get comfortable being very uncomfortable
  • How to turn your warm ups into a bootcamp for developing mental toughness
  • The biggest downfall for most athletes is a lack of strength endurance, power endurance, and overall durability—discover how to possess all 3 attributes to the max…
  • What the champion chooses to do that others don’t—for the massive winning edge…
  • The 3 things that need to be in every athlete’s blood
  • Why overall athleticism is the true winning formula—and how to get it…
  • The 16 training basics that ALWAYS deliver powerful results…
  • How to progress from Gym Strength to Sports Strength…
Sandbag Blitz Training
  • Do you have the heavy horsepower to REALLY drive your muscles?—Here’s how to make it a reality...
  • When to train hard, harder and hard enough…
  • The 6 factors that determine how hard you can train…
  • A commonsense approach to an annual plan for a single sport athlete…
  • Understanding the 3 major categories of athlete—each needs a different approach or they won’t develop their full potential…
  • The astonishing but little-understood training power of "Auto-regulation"—get the all-important knowledge here…
  • How and why to blend science and hell—for the perfect athletic success cocktail…
  • How to transform yourself into a superior physical monster…
  • How to avoid burn out…
  • Why it is a huge mistake to allow parents into your gym…
  • How and why THIS initial no-hoper went on to become the most successful wrestler to ever come out of his high school…
  • How to forge an indomitable spirit and extreme mental toughness—upping the ante for all the marbles…
  • Why athleticism should always be the priority—not strength…
  • How a chubby loser went on to be 2-time winner of De Franco’s World’s Strongest Athlete…
  • The coach’s role as "gap-filler"—and why this is so crucial to his athletes’ success…
  • 8 perfect exercises to Grease the Groove with
Trap Bar Deadlift
  • How much weight you should aspire to and lift in the big 3—Press, Squat and Deadlift…
  • What ultimately matters in training—it’s not at all what most people focus on…
  • The Ethan Reeves 10% Rule for staying motivated with your training…
  • The #1 focus for your GPP training should be THIS…
  • How to be as strong as a horse…
  • How to fix the fear of leg training…
  • Why you should never divorce your health from your strength
  • How when and why to deload as the smartest way to avoid hitting the wall
  • The perils of perfectionism and how it can limit your progress…
  • How to perform jump training for greater explosiveness
  • How to successfully implement mini-cycles into your training…
  • Why comfort is the enemy of adaptation and physical transformation…
  • Beyond mental toughness—how to develop the Inner Warrior spirit…
  • For the brave few: check out this not-so-kosher, "not for everyone" training program…
  • How to do hellish workouts to build your spiritual fortitude…
  • How to breed success and toughness beyond the gym walls…
  • How to be a Soul Lifter…
  • How to discover your big WHY—then go do it…
  • The transformational power of especially hellish training challenges…
  • The evolution of the WHY…
  • Discover what should be the essence of any intro training program…
  • The 6 key bodyweight exercises you must begin with…
  • 8 ways to use bodyweight training as a coach…
Hanging Knee Raise Bodyweight
  • How to get GO muscles with tire flipping…
  • How to use kegs as a secret key to massive functional muscle
  • THE secret to getting really big and strong with free weights…
  • Why you should NEVER add weights to your lift unless THIS is the case…
  • How to get so damn tough it will blow everyone’s minds…
  • How sled training inevitably jacks up strength, stamina, overall fitness, speed and power—PLUS helps rehab you from injuries and surgeries…

Kenneth Pagach"It is my pleasure and honor to recommend and endorse the publication of The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning by Zach Even-Esh. As Zach’s high school Wrestling Coach, I marvel at his growth, development, and maturation into an outstanding expert on strength and conditioning. His knowledge, expertise, and motivational skills as a teacher and coach shine throughout the book. His dedication, intensity and zeal are so obvious. His own life story and work ethic will serve as a great role model to the numerous young athletes who are fortunate to fall under his mentoring.

The many exercises, pictures, and schedules will be an invaluable aid to any young athlete, as well as other teachers and coaches, who desire to improve in strength and conditioning. An outstanding publication!"—KENNETH PAGACH, Edison High School Wrestling Coach (NJ)1964 – 1994, National Wrestling Hall of Fame

The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning TABLE OF CONTENTS

Foreword by Coach Ethan Reeve
Chapter 1 - Blood, Stones, & Tears
Chapter 2 - Live To Ride, Ride To Live
Chapter 3 - How It All Started
Chapter 4 - Push Ups, Arm Wrestling & Training Partners
Chapter 5 - Andre The Giant
Chapter 6 - The "Best" Training Program
Chapter 7 - Learning The Hard Way
Chapter 8 - Eagles Football & The Eye Of The Tiger
Chapter 9 - Functional Training
Chapter 10 - Mind Over Matter & Mr. Israel
Chapter 11 - Strong Mind, Strong Body
Chapter 12 - Diamond Gym
Chapter 13 - Welcome To The REAL World
Chapter 14 - Slaying My Inner Demons
Chapter 15 - The Moment That Changed My Life Forever
Chapter 16 - Sports Specific Training & Farm Boy Strength
Chapter 17 - Kettlebells For Combat
Chapter 18 - Learning From Others
Chapter 19 - The Experts
Chapter 20 - The Enemy of Perfection
Chapter 21 - Strong & Useless
Chapter 22 - Coach Reeve & Champion Workouts
Chapter 23 - Gym Strength vs. Sports Strength
Chapter 24 - When To Train Hard, Harder, & Hard Enough
Chapter 25 - Underground Strength Gym Memories
Case Study # 1: The Original Underground Wrecking Crew
Case Study # 2: Just Enough & No More. The Minimalist Approach
Case Study # 3: The Baseball BEAST
Case Study # 4: Strong & Useless
Case Study # 5: ALL Heart
Case Study # 6: Curls
Case Study # 7: 60 Lbs Lighter
Case Study # 8: Modern Day Milo
Chapter 26 - Filling The Gap
Chapter 27 - Rest & Recovery
Chapter 28 - Life Lessons: Training Year Round
Chapter 29 - The Art Of Coaching
Chapter 30 - Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

The Underground Strength Gym Bodyweight Warm-up
Combo Warm-up Drills
Partner Warm-up Drills
Explosive Lower Body Bodyweight Drills.. Explosive Pushup Drills
Sprint & Stairs Training
Upper Body Bodyweight Playground Pulling Movements
Upper Body Playground Bodyweight Pushing Movements
Wall Walking Variations
Upper Body Playground Abdominal Training
Table Training
Bodyweight Workouts

Sandbag and Bodyweight Workouts

Stone Workouts

Truck Pushing
Battling Ropes
Outdoor Workouts

Tire Throwing For Power

Keg & Tire Workouts

Barbell Exercises


Michael DeMarco"When I first met Zach I was 135 pounds soaking wet and a sub-500 wrestler. In a little more than a year I packed on 15 pounds of muscle and was pound-for-pound one of the strongest guys on my wrestling team. The underground program transformed me physically and mentally from zero wins my freshman year of college, to having successful junior and senior seasons as a captain of the Rutgers wrestling team.

Not only did I benefit athletically from the underground methods, but Zach's approach to training, coaching, and life played a major role in detouring my career path as I completed college. My experience at the Underground helped inspire me to pursue a career that allows me to cultivate training environments that constantly challenge athletes of all ages to be ‘comfortable being uncomfortable’ as Zach says.

The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is the secret formula people have been searching for, and it's finally compiled into one place for everyone to see. I personally experienced the Underground methods, and have seen the transformation every one of my athletes has experienced. There's no doubt that Underground Strength and Conditioning will have a major influence on my athletes' programming for years to come."—MICHAEL DEMARCO, Motives Movement – Owner, The Helm CrossFit – Owner, Rutgers Wrestling 12

Product Information

The only thing relevant about the price of The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is how astonishingly inexpensive it is for what you receive in benefits.

You get 424 pages of life-changing, inspirational life-lessons with a veritable treasure chest of trenches-tested, hyper-practical training tips, strategies, methods and programs. All for less than the cost of an average meal at an average restaurant! Throw in the bonuses and you are looking at a no-brainer, if you are remotely serious about enhancing any aspect of your athleticism.

The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning: How to Get Stronger in the Gym & in Life Using the Training Secrets of the Athletic Elite

Encyclopedia Underground Strength and Conditioning LgBy Zach Even-Esh

424 Pages
Paperback $39.95
eBook $19.95


Read Reviews For: The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning (paperback)
9.57 out of 10 (28 reviews)
Rated 10/10 Great training motivation
By Ben Marvin / Austin, Texas, USA

This book is more that just a great manual that gives training tricks and sample programs, while it does include those things the part of this book that I found most helpful was Zach's insight into the realities of training. While most books are written focusing on ideal environment and training under perfect conditions, this book is a great look at making training work when you don't have those things. Zach Even-Esh has written a book that shows how to make training brutally effective in any environment, whether in a collegiate weight room or your own back yard. Having gotten to meet and work with Zach in person it is immediately apparent that he truly enjoys training and that this is really what matters. Desire to work hard and improve will overcome any obstacles to success.

Rated 10/10 Where inspiration meets practical guidance
By Robert Storey / Noblesville, Indiana, United States

This is one of the best books I've ever read on hard work, dedication, and fitness. It is more than just a "how to" of getting strong. It's how to approach life. How to be strong in spirit as well as body.

Rated 10/10 An Instant Classic!
By Michael Krivka, Senior RKC / Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States

Are you ready for a book that will radically change how you train? Do you use body weight, kettlebells, sandbags, or bars and just aren't getting the results you are looking for? Are you using all of these tools and just don?t have the tactics to utilize them to their maximum potential? I?m guessing that the answer is a disappointing ?NO?.

Zach Evan-Esh?s new book, The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning, is an epic sized introduction into the background, philosophy, and the nuts and bolts of how Zach trains his amazingly strong and resilient athletes. You?ll learn not only how he trains his athletes, but his philosophy and background that lead him to these amazingly effective protocols. Zach opens the doors to his underground training facility and shows you what it takes to truly be strong on the field and on the mat. You?ll find yourself referring to this book often in the future and learning more each time you crack the cover. Great job Zach and I look forward to your next project!

Rated 9/10 Basics of life, and training in a nutshell. only f
By Amnon Darsa / Kefar saba, Isarel

When taking the book at first, I was expecting it to be more like an encyclopedia that will be divided to different training apparatuses and just a list of exercises to follow and do.
What I got instead, is a deep personal story of a journey through life in training experiences and a learning journal that is amazing to read. It put me in a place of ?I didn't do it all wrong...?

I just love the thinking behind ?Underground Strength?: play, check your limits, basics are the most important and love what your doing.
For me this is the main idea when I train Krav-Maga and strength. I love KB's, DVRT system and body weight exercise. I put myself through all kinds of crazy workouts that challenge me and my endurance. In this book I found the approval and confirmation that what I do is OK. I found someone that holds the same ideas regarding training and is not afraid to think out of the box. Personally, I feel I don't have to follow a plan by the letter, however, I need to tweak it so it fits me and my needs.

I love the fact that Zach Even-Esh plays with whatever he can put his hands on and wherever he can.

There is also a nice angle for me: Zach is partly Israeli, something that already gives him some bonus points...

In short I like this book. It has a lot of good simple ideas, thoughts and approaches to training and life.
I very much enjoyed the simplicity and straight forward approach that is a bit missing in this world of fitness and training. One thing I would have liked to have is a bit more on the exercise variations and tools of the trade.

Rated 10/10 One Of The Great Books!
By Paul Britt / Rockwall, Texas, USA

This is one of the best books that I have read on fitness and strength. I have read Zach?s work over the years and always thought it was good information, but missed something. Now that he has laid out his background and the path that lead him to where he is, I fully get it. In this book, he tells you what to do to make people better.

Zach mentions Arnold?s Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding and how much he loved it. That book did chang bodybuilding. Zach?s book is as good and important. It will change strength and conditioning for the better. It is a true game changer for making yourself, as well as your students, better, stronger and faster.

While my methods were already in line with Zach?s thoughts, this book improved my gym from the start. I have already implemented some of his tools and tactics along with the reasons Zach uses them with my own students. They have noticed and liked the noticeable differences they felt in the first week.

The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength and Conditioning is a life changer. At 446 pages, a simple review cannot do it full justice. It is a an incredible resource and truly fits the definition of encyclopedia.

This is a must have in your library. Do yourself and your clients a favor and get this book.

Rated 9/10 Great read and resource...
By Darius Boockholdt / Boise, Idaho, USA

First, I was very impressed with the quality of this publication. You get 400+ pages of reading plus a ton of great photos.

This is part storybook and part training manual. Lot's of interesting stories and anecdotes as well as good training advice along the way. Much discussion on toughness and functional training.

Zach seems to have experienced a lot in his life, and he's not even very old. He shares his journey and weaves in practical training advice, usually with a moral to every story.

This is not a concise workout guide or program - although he does sprinkle in a few specific workouts throughout. This book gives you hundreds or ideas on workouts and exercises and gives you the information needed to write your own program...with the only limit being your own creativity.

Rated 10/10 Awesome! Hard to put down!
By Julio Olvera / Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico

Let's be honest, the book is mostly autobiographical but the anecdotes and stories are amazing, this book will inspire you to lift your butt from the couch and go outside and lift heavy stuff.

The book will help you to eliminate all your excuses to avoid working out

The warmup section is worth the price of the book

Be strong

Rated 10/10 Great work, love it & live the code!
By Philip Arngrimsson / Dalian, Liaoning, China

For less than 1 year been following Zach Even-esh work and has changed my life. Was lucky enough to find his podcasts on a random search on itunes and since then have been hooked. His mantra of Strong Body, Strong Mind & Strong Life resonates with me and this book Encyclopedia of Underground Strength & Conditioning tells the story of how he was formed, his training philosophy for himself & his Underground Strength Crew. I'm a 35 year old with 2 kids and some sports injuries from my youth, had been doing the usual bodybuilding routines but began incorporating strength work, calisthenics, grease the groove & farmer walks all from this book and learned via Zach's podcast. As Zach puts it do you want beach show muscles or functional muscles that will help you or your family in a crisis... am sure most fathers (and mothers) would choose the latter.
In this book your going to find tried and tested strength techniques that have lasted the ages and where most of the bodybuilding world is turning back to. Zach shares his passion for training, his life and training mistakes and how he formulated his current training programs for elite athletes. He's done this by being in the trenches of strength & conditioning from a young age, by trying & failing plus learning from his extensive list of top coaches in multiple fields of strength & conditioning. Most of these names I feel I know as have listened to them on Zach's podcast and these have really fired me up further in the gym & in life.
Obviously not all the techniques here for developing a young athlete I can use in my middle ages but Zach does a great job of balancing programs for developing young athletes plus sharing core foundational strength techniques to make you stronger and keep you going long into the future.
Overall a great read for a wide variety of people, the middle age needing a spark of motivation, the young athlete wanting to achieve the next level and beyond & the strength coach wishing to learn from others who achieve results! Great work, love it & live the code!

Rated 10/10 Absolutely amazing
By Stephen H / Dublin, Dubliin, Ireland

I bought the E-Book and instantly read half of it in one sitting. I stayed up until 4am reading it. The stories are so good and continue on from each other so well it is like a movie.

This book is not only a game changer but a life changer.
Definitely one to re-read many many times.

HIGHLY recommend.

Rated 10/10 Excellent job Zach
By Bruce Kelso / Champaign, IL, USA

This book pretty much confirms what I've known for years. There is no "Silver Bullet!" You just have to work hard. Everything is easy if you work hard at it. So just shut-up and do it. Get under the bar, do pull-ups, push-ups, lunges & squats, lift heavy stuff, work hard. And keep doing it every day so you don't lose that edge. I'm 62 and can still do 15 to 20 pull-ups, 5 pistols each leg, bench 200. I'm 5'5" and weigh 145. This book is inspiring because Zach is inspiring, energetic, and sticks with the fundamental exercises that make you strong. I read Zach's e-mails every day and thoroughly enjoy his perspective. This book is full of good ideas, but don't just read it; use it and get off your duff and do these things every day. It's worth it.

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