Good Intentions, Not Good Enough

I have lost count how many times someone says to me “I’d love to go to the gym but…”.  There are many endings to that story and frankly 97% of them are weak.  Going to the gym to ensure you are in the best shape possible is a commitment and not just words.  You actually have to go and perform a workout and not just talk about it.  It needs to become a priority in your already super charged schedule.

If you REALLY want to get into shape you make time in your schedule (it can take less than one hour) to hit the gym and get some solid work in.  The next step is making better food choices more than 80% of the week/month.  Too many times people work their butts off at the gym then wonder why they are not seeing/feeling results because they have not make the full commitment to both physical training AND better eating habits.  Trust me, in the early days when I used to visit Tyler in his garage gym and work super hard I used to have that “I’ll work it off…” or “I’ve earned it” mentality when it comes to eating garbage.  You cannot outwork bad eating habits, PERIOD.

They say it takes 3 weeks to form a new habit so if you have getting to the gym on your wish list for fall, make it happen today.  You’re an organized person and I’m sure you can schedule that hour in if you really want it.  Make sure to add better food choices to the mix and your everyday will get better before you know it.

It’s as much mental as it is physical.  On the days when you’d rather not “just show up” just go!  I recently posted on the “Just Show Up” advice so feel free to scroll down, its great advice.

Time to turn those good intentions into action, otherwise I don’t want to hear you want to join the gym but blah, blah, blah.  You want to feel better, look better, well you know how to do it if you follow this blog since this is not my first post on this topic.

How does that saying go? Put up or shut up.

Be Great!



Danimal’s Birthday Paleo Challenge

Enough already….been snacking here, eating whatever there a bit too much lately.  It hasn’t been overly bad but enough for me to put my foot down and recruit an army of people to hop on board and get through the next almost 5 weeks at 100% paleo. 

Summer is a fun time for all and we like to have a few pints, buns on our bbq burgers and other sweet treats that come with the season.  Problem is…summer is done now and some are having trouble shaking the relaxed habits you were so good at before the sun started shinning everyday.  Well, it’s now time to bring back those good habits and hit it hard cold turkey as of right now!  Not next Monday or tomorrow, NOW!

I am going 99% paleo until October 22nd (which is my Bday).  The only treats I am allowing are cream in my coffee (helps reduce cortisol levels) and red wine (I might want to let my hair down a few times before then).  I am not having any treat meals during this mission and I am also giving up my Friday caramel machiato until then as well.  It’s time for everyone to get into the groove and clean up the old meal plan.  Don’t wait until spring to be bikini ready, start now!

I will be weighing myself and getting Josee (who also wants in, her Bday is the day after mine) to measure me and the results will be posted here on October 24th.  If you want in please comment or email me and we will get you weighed and measured.  I will be at the gym tonight between 8pm and 9pm as well as tomorrow from 7:30pm to 9:30pm.  Plenty of time to get in on all the fun!

Be Great and Lean!


Kids Need Weight And Resistance Training, They’re Built For It

There is a reason we hear a lot about child obesity and overweight kids in recent years.  Most of them are glued to the television, their laptop, Nintendo DS, and other portable gaming devices.  Back in the day, kids helped out with chores around the house, played outside for countless hours and video games were less common and television wasn’t geared to them after school with as many options as they have today.  I heard a story on the local radio station this morning that found kids who watched SpongeBob SquarePants had attention span problems.

One of the problems today is that many parents still believe the false information from the 70’s that weight training will stunt your child’s growth.  That couldn’t be further from the truth.  Unfortunately people are lazy and like just just go with what their told.  If you google search Youth Fitness Training you’ll find countless articles about the benefits of training for youngsters from ages 3 to 18.  NOT BODYBUILDING OR POWERLIFTING, but just some basic resistance training and body and light weight type training.  The recommendation for the youngsters is to put them into a supervised setting with a professional coach to ensure the training is safe. 

My 2 year old nephew shows great motor skill recruitment and coordination with a jump off two feet onto a platform and landing with both feet.

But weight training stunts growth….Wrong.  Weight and resistance training in youngsters from 3-10ish sees strength gains without the muscle build.  The resistance training stimulate the nervous system to better communicate with the muscles so motor skills are improved and better coordination is established.  Inactive kids will have the same muscle mass as an active kid but if the nervous system isn’t firing all the muscle capacity they will be a bit weaker and uncoordinated.  A child’s body doesn’t recognize weight so whether or not it’s a barbell or kettlebell or a balloon or simply an empty hand the body will develop.  Even with teenagers, strength training doesn’t produce big bulging muscles, but there is muscle increase.  It also helps their mental awareness and focus levels in school.  That could be an entire other post.  We’re hunter gatherers by nature so sitting down for hours at a time is not what we are built for.  We need physical stimulation in order to stay focused.  For you teachers who read this who have an unfocused class, get them to stand up and move around doing some basic things like jumping jacks, hop on one leg  or squats for 5-10 minutes and sit them back down and watch the difference.

Alright enough with the studies, here is my personal experience coaching kids.  I see the 3-9 year olds gaining huge amounts of coordination and their interest in participation increases every week and we can’t do enough to satisfy them in an hour or less.  Many of them also have an entirely new level of confidence in themselves which will translate into other parts of their lives.  The 10-14 year old are getting stronger by the class and their levels of confidence are sky-high as well when they come into the gym now.  They have made new friends and are doing fun and cool things that benefit them not just at their other chosen sport but in school as well. 

The training doesn’t just help with muscle development either.  It is beneficial to a child’s bone density, ligament development and much more.  I will say it again, we are built to move this way, it’s natural.  Most kids can squat before they can walk, coincidence, I think not!

My 2 year old nephew picking up a ball, perfect squat. We untrain ourselves as we get older.

The fun factor, that’s the emphasis we, as coaches, try to focus on.  How do we make sure they are getting good strength and resistance training and having fun at the same time.  If it’s not fun they won’t come back or want to come and as a parent I know how crappy it is to try to force your child to something you want them to do but they have zero interest in.

For those of you who are still skeptical go ahead and do your research, you’ll see there are countless studies out there that recommend this type of training.

Be Great!


Over 10,000 Views

I started this 18 month ago and have enjoyed the journey tremendously.  I am beyond extatic to see the total view go past the 10,000 mark.  Thanks to all my faithful readers.  Hope you all stick around to get to 20,000.

Please let me know what you like about the blog or topic you’d like me to tackle in the comment section.


Thanks and Be Great!


Goals, Got’em? You Need’em!

As kids head back to school and chase that diploma to graduate high school and move on to college, university, trades or whatever they hope to achieve in life.  They’re hopes and dreams are goals and the bigger the goal the harder they will work in school to achieve it.  The same applies at the gym.  When you train with specific goals in mind you train a bit harder with more focus and push to achieve what it is your are after be it a certain amount of weight or rep count.

So here is what brought me to this post.  Most of the summer I was in the gym and training many times twice a day. I felt good, my efforts we respectable and I felt alright.  I was doing comfortable workouts and getting my front squat numbers up.  I hit a point where I was just going through the motions and not really getting anywhere.

Fast forward to last week when I was presented a sheet with numbers I should be hitting in the Snatch and Clean & Jerk based on my front squat.  According to that chart I was 105lbs off my potential snatch and 96lbs off what I should be cleaning!  Ouch!  The result of simply squatting and not doing the time or work on technique in the other two movements.  It was a wake up call to zone in my training and hit those movements hard and refine the technique to get those  numbers up.  I was able in one week, working on efficiency in the movements and at them daily to put 15lbs on my snatch and refine the movement of the clean & jerk.  My zest for the gym is higher than it’s been in a long time and I can’t wait to try to improve that movements each day.  Did I PR (personal record) every time I lifted, no, but left each session satisfied that I moved closer to my goal.

The other part you need to ensure for success is making those goals realistic and specific.  Mine are specific and based on my front squat I know they are realistic.  Don’t just say I wanna lose weight or I want to lift heavier.  Make the goals real and map out a real plan.  If it’s weight give it a number and figure out how many weeks it may take to get there.  Stop weighing yourself each day and do it once a week at the same time on the same scale.  You’ll see it will keep you honest when presented with an untimely treat to the new regime.  Lifting heavier is vague as well.  Put a number and chase it, don’t skip the down sets and figure out a realistic timeline.  I am 80lbs off what my snatch should be so I didn’t set a 4 week goal to get there. I am eyeing Christmas to be  close.  Have plan, just saying it or writing it down doesn’t cut it.  I am in a good place to come to the gym twice a day and tackle those movements to get better.  Where there is a will there is a way.

The other thing many forget is enjoying the journey.  If you just have your eye on the prize it can seem long and create frustration.  It is important to celebrate every step that leads you to what the goal is.  If I simply focused on the goal I would give up after 2-3 weeks since the weight gains I need on the bar are high.  But, I celebrate each pound up, each pull where the bar felt right and all else that comes with focus.  I leaned out a bit during last week.  Keeping focused on goals has many benefits aside from the final achievement.  The side effects are better eating to increase performance to lean out.  Increase in overall mood, I have been a pretty happy dude walking around with my goals and have been pleased with my first week’s efforts.  Time for you to do the same.

Choose a goal or more, come up with a plan and enjoy the ride my friend.  I will meet you at the finish line! There is  no such thing as “I can’t”, it’s more “I won’t”…be on the right side of that fence and say “I can” and “I will”.

Be Great!