The Wasted Workout?

A trainee came in, stressed about her daughter, tired from lack of sleep, and feeling mentally exhausted. She didn’t feel particularly strong and didn’t really lift any heavier than the prior week. “Did I just waste the workout?” she asked. “Not at all”, I replied. Wasted Workouts Online writers and trainers often talk about not […]

Split Squat and Knee Pain

The split squat is the basic single leg exercise. In my estimation, it is the single leg movement that should be taught first, before any type of lunging exercise. Split Squat Problems A couple problems become evident immediately when a trainee struggles to perform them. 1. Unfamiliarity. If a trainee is unfamiliar with the movement, […]

5 Quick Points About The Trap Bar Deadlift

Some people have asked me how I set up to use the trap bar for deadlifts. Here is a short video: 1. I set up with my feet in the middle of the bar. Often people set up too far back, which results in their hands being directly underneath or in front of their shoulders. […]

The “Ribs Down” Push-ups

Push-ups are great for building overall body strength and integrating that strength through the upper back, shoulders, arms, and core. They make the entire muscular system work hard, not just the muscles that are doing the pushing. The rest of the body has to struggle to stabilize the body as it moves through space. If […]

Stop the Fitness Comparisons

One thing that always comes up in training is the inevitable fitness comparisons. “Why don’t I look like that person”? The best answer is the most obvious one: you aren’t that person. If that answer doesn’t suffice, let’s examine why fitness comparisons are useless. The Keys to Improved Fitness If you consistently lift progressively heavier […]

The Genius of Joseph Campbell

At some point in my senior year of high school, during a particularly difficult time, my mom posted a card on my wall with a drawing of flowers and trees and some quote about “following your bliss”. I had no clue what it meant. Bliss is not a concept that I could easily relate to; […]

Don't Sweat the Yin

“When people see things as beautiful, ugliness is created. When people see things as good, evil is created. Being and non-being produce each other. Difficult and easy complement each other. Long and short define each other. High and low oppose each other. Fore and aft follow each other.” – Lao Tzu Yin and Yang are […]

Deadlift Problems: Where the Bar Begins

Starting with the bar too far in front of the body during the deadlift is fairly common but can cause some serious problems due to the physics involved. What I do at the end of rep #2 and the beginning of rep #3 is what I’m focusing on. Rep 1 is good. I then reset […]

Slow Down Your Life (and your deadlift)

In the midst of the American invasion of Sicily, 1943… A mortar fragment had chipped two of his teeth, but [Teddy] Roosevelt [Jr.] “mumbled and rumbled to himself snatches of song and bits of poetry in French, in Latin and in English”, while lamenting the lack of scholarship “in this hurried world”. – The Day […]

How to Break Out of a Rut

There are two definitions of rut that resonate with me: “A fixed, usually boring routine, dreary or undeviating, a narrow or predictable way of life.” and also “A habit or pattern of behavior that has become dull and unproductive but is hard to change”. Ruts can manifest themselves in all areas of life. A football […]