Joshua Sarge

I LIKE TO MAINTAIN A POWER LIFTER MINDSET

BIG BACK GRIPS USER PROFILE INTERVIEW: JOSHUA “TANK” SARGE

BBG: Let’s start with the basics. Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you? Where are you from? What do you do?  What other jobs have you had? Where did you go to school? What are your major goals other than working out?

JOSH: Well I’m 24 and was born in San Clemente, CA, but grew up in Columbus, OH…home of the Arnold Classic. Over the past few years I’ve been trying to make my way back to California. Made a pit stop in Dallas for a couple years where I started a personal training company. I have worked as a personal trainer and nutrition consultant, and I had stints at Red Lobster and Lowes right out of high school lol. Now that I’m back in Cali I’m waiting to hear about a couple job opportunities and really just focusing on the gym. I went to high school in Grove City, OH, at Central Crossing High School and my college degree is still in progress. Honestly, my main goal is to 1) become an IFBB pro and 2) become Mr. Olympia. These are my goals and I’ll do anything and everything to attain them.

Interview Questions

BBG: Tell us about North Texas Personal Training.

JOSH: NTPT was a personal training company I started and ran for a couple years while I was in Dallas. Personal training is really something I have a passion for. Once I start competing I plan on taking it up a level and becoming a strength coach to help younger bodybuilders and powerlifters.

BBG: When did you start working out? What got you into it?

JOSH: I started working out when I was 14 because I knew it would help me with sports. I played football, basketball, and ran track in middle school. As soon as I began working out it I began to love it. But up until only a few years ago I really only lifted because it was fun. Once I realized how well my body reacted to weight training I decided I needed to do something more with it.

BBG: Your physique is really thick. 5’9” and 262 lbs. What are the rest of your stats?

JOSH: Right now my weight fluctuates between 260-265 and I’m working to burn some fat with a lower carb intake before I bulk up. My current measurements are: Arms 21”, Legs 31”, Chest 52”.

BBG: Do you consider yourself a bodybuilder or a power lifter? What are your goals in the gym?

OSH: I am definitely a bodybuilder, but unlike many bodybuilders I like to maintain a power lifter mindset on all of my heavy movements. Each and every time I’m in the gym I try to make it the best workout I’ve ever had. That’s my short term goal. Long term, I plan on being the best in the game.

BBG: Tell us about your workouts. Is there any guiding philosophy you apply?

JOSH: I am currently running Rambod’s FST-7. I have tweaked it a little though. I keep my reps between 6-12 reps per set, other than burnouts. I would say my philosophy is that of a “power” bodybuilder. I go hard and heavy…sort of like Branch Warren. Nothing builds density and thickness like heavy weight.

BBG: What are you like on the gym floor? If someone were to workout with you, what are they in for?

JOSH: They’d be in for the best workout they’ve ever had. Sometimes I spend an hour hitting heavy presses on chest day. And then you still have the rest of the workout. Supersets, drop sets, negatives, etc. I try to be as creative as possible. Anyone that’s not used to it would be dying.

BBG: What does your upper body workout consist of? What do you do for traps and shoulders? Your genetics seem excellent.

JOSH: My current split is: Monday, Chest and Tri’s; Tuesday, Back and Bi’s; Wednesday, Hamstrings and Calves; Thursday, Shoulders; Friday, Arms; Saturday, Legs. I always work heavy movements first to build thickness and density. For traps I love shrugs and upright rows. The shrugs I like to alternate between heavy weeks and light weeks. I pretty much always go heavy on upright rows, 225+. My PR is 315×5. Sometimes I do traps on both back and shoulder days. As far as delts go, they are my favorite bodypart. I could do lateral raises of all types all day long. I use dumbbells and cables on every workout. I have also always done shoulder presses to build mass. As far as genetics go, every good bodybuilder has them. I was blessed with some good ones for strength and size growth.

BBG: And of course we want to know what you do to train your back.

JOSH: Again I hit it heavy to start, whether it’s bent over rows or t-bar rows. I also hit deadlifts once every two weeks. After the heavy pulls I destroy my back with pulldowns of all types and dumbbell work. Currently I am using a lot of reverse grip exercises to build the bottom of the lats.

BBG: When we first met, you were using weight lifting straps and mentioned some problems you were having with weight straps. Can you tell us some of those problems?

JOSH: In my opinion there are two fundamental problems with lifting straps. The first problem is that the more you use straps the weaker your grip becomes because they take much of the grip out of the equation by locking themselves in around the bar and attachment. So in the long term you’re not helping yourself as much. The second problem is that they bruise your wrists and if the weight is heavy enough can actually cause pain and discomfort in your wrists. It’s not good when you feel like your hands are going to pop off lol.

BBG: And you now use Big Back Grips? What has your experience been so far?

JOSH: I love Big Back Grips. They help provide a solid grip that in turn allows you to utilize your actual strength and abilities. They even work better than chalk. They never slip, period. Plus you can still increase grip strength and forearm size by using them, a must for anyone looking to move serious weight.

BBG: What do you advise lifters looking to achieve the same strength and thickness you always display?

JOSH: First thing I will say is it’s not a sprint. Gaining strength and thickness is definitely a long process. You have to hit heavy presses and pulls. You can always tell a difference between a guy who hits heavy weight and a guy who always goes light and works just for a pump. There is something about that density and thickness you can’t gain any other way.

BBG: And lastly, can you sketch out a few workouts in detail? Something to inspire and impress us smaller guys? Maybe your chest, back and shoulder routine?

JOSH: Sure. Here are some sample workouts I did recently:

Cable Side, Front, Rear Laterals

  • 2 Warm up sets on each
  • Shoulder Press
  • 2 Warm up sets
  • 225x12x2
  • 275x8x2
  • 315×6
  • 225x12x2 w/ drop sets to 135×12
  • 135 burnout

Dumbbell Front Raises Supersets w/ Side Laterals 60x10x4

  • 110x12x2
  • 120x10x2
  • Behind Head Lat Pulldown Supersets w/ DB Rear Laterals 50x10x3
  • 100x12x3 (with squeeze)

Shrugs Supersets w/ Dumbbell Side Laterals (touch at top) 40x8x3

  • 405x50x4
  • Cable Rear Deltoid Pulls
  • 4 Sets up to full stack x12 reps
  • Cybex Shoulder Press Supersets w/ DB Side Laterals (30x12x7)(FST-7)
  • 100x12x7

Deadlifts

  • 2 Warm up sets
  • 225x10x2
  • 315x10x2
  • 405x8x2
  • 495×6
  • 585×4

Bent Over Rows (Strict, Full ROM)

  • 225x12x2
  • 315x8x2
  • 405×6
  • Pendley Rows
  • 225x12x2

Seated Cable Rows Supersets w/ Straight Arm Pulldowns 100x10x3

  • Full Stack x12x3
  • Reverse Grip Pulldowns
  • Half Stack x12x5
  • Pullups
  • BWx4x2

Cybex Lat Pulldowns (30 sec break between sets)

  • 150x12x7
  • EZ Bar Curls Supersets w/ Hammers (with twist and squeeze) 30x8x7 (30 sec break)
  • 75x12x7

Flat Bench

  • 2 Warm up sets
  • 225x20x2
  • 315x12x2
  • 405×6
  • 365×8
  • 455×5
  • 315×24
  • 225×60

Incline Bench

  • 225×20-25×5

 

Incline Fly Supersets w/ Plate Press 21s 20x 3 sets

  • 75x12x3

Cybex Bench Supersets w/ Incline Cable Fly 40x12x7 (FST-7, 30 second break)

  • 150x12x7

Single Hand Reverse Grip Cable Extensions Supersets w/ Straight Bar Ext 80x12x7 (FST-7, 30 second break)

  • 30x12x7

BBG: Joshua, thanks so much.

JOSH: Hey, thank you!

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