Which Lineman Puked?
Because I hate leaving mysteries unsolved, I talked to Mark Philippi, seven-time World's Strongest Man competitor and offseason trainer of Redskins, attempting to wrap up yesterday's loose ends. He told me that the heaviness of the weights guys like Renaldo Wynn and Joe Salave'a are hauling during the infamous "Drag" is based on the friction created by this special Strongest Man device he has. It's some sort of machine that allows him to replicate, for example, dragging around a tractor trailer without actually bringing a tractor trailer to his facility. He said when they were doing the backwards drag, the equivalent was probably 500-600 pounds.
He's worked with Wynn for more than a decade, first meeting him when Renaldo was still a linebacker at Notre Dame and Philippi worked for UNLV. This offseason was his first extended work with Salave'a, whom he called "an impressive-looking athlete." And he said his goal is to have all pro athletes who live in Las Vegas train with him during their offseasons.
Finally, my hard-hitting questions: which man would be a better Strongest Man competitor?
"Obviously Joe would probably be better, just because he's a large individual," Philippi said. "If they trained the right way, they could do well. It's easier to make a good athlete into a stronger athlete; you can't make a strong guy into a good athlete. Whenever you have athleticism, you can always make it stronger. You can take the potential they have and turn them into what I do at Strong Man a lot easier than you can train me to do what they do."
And which of them actually vomited after doing "The Drag?"
"Both Renaldo and Joe at one time or another had puked," he assured me. "So they're kind of telling on each other, you know what I mean? When you go in the bathroom and close the door there for a while during the workout several times, you're not just going to the bathroom. They won't admit it, but both of them have."
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