Today is my 300th article.
With three shots of espresso down, I’m ready to type away with serious fervor on everything life, strength and conditioning, and business.
But holy shit. 300 articles.
How did I manage this body of work in the past couple years?
For one, coffee.
Two, amazing readers.
And three, the gift of introversion.
It’s been a solid two years hiding behind the keyboard in silence and spitting out content. Blogging has allowed me to escape into a magical world of creativity, connect with people across the world, and drop F bombs freely…all while hiding in my bedroom in the comfort of my pajamas.
So. Freaking. Sweet.
So without further ado, here are 30 thoughts on life, strength and conditioning, and business:
1.) It’s okay to fire a client.
Sometimes people aren’t a match. An empath can’t date a sociopath. A glass of water can’t be mixed with a glass of oil. A hobbit probably can’t get it on with an elf.
Earlier this year, I let a client of three years go because our values were out of alignment. He wanted results overnight, whereas I preached hard work and long-term consistency.
In the end, no one was right or wrong, it simply wasn’t a fit. I wrote an extensive article on this here.
2.) There’s no such thing as sport specific training.
“Sport specific” is a common buzz phrase in the performance world.
But in terms of strength and power most sports will be trained the same.
Conditioning is a different monster in which each sport has varying energy demands, so conditioning can be considered “sport specific.”
However, when we look to strength…
A gymnast wants to increase her performance on the parallel bars? Total body strength.
A soccer player wants to improve her kicking power? Total body strength and power training.
To that end, build athletes in the weight room, and build “sport specific” players on the field, court, ice rink, or pitch.
Oh. And a knowledge bomb: if you want to train sport specific, DO MORE OF YOUR SPORT.
3.) Writing tip: be yourself.
4.) Agility improves with a multi-faceted approach.
There are a number of factors that allow athletes to improve their agility. These include strength, power, coordination, and ability to react to uncertain external stimuli.
In order to perform the above drill, I need quadricep, hamstring, core, and upper body strength/power to accelerate quickly. Also, for the reactive component, being a Dean’s List student at Hopkins helped. ;-O
Only performing agility drills isn’t the answer anymore. It’s tantamount to a race car athlete expecting to win a race even though his car doesn’t have horsepower. Not going to happen.
5.) If someone gets defensive, that’s a bad sign.
If someone uses all their energy to prove they’re right and you’re wrong, they’re not worth a second more of your time.
I’ve experienced this in relationships as well as in an industry full of egos. Some people feel they have a lot to prove and aren’t afraid to bash everyone else’s opinion and make you feel crazy.
Solution: keep an open mind, try to grow professionally and personally, or be compassionate, and move on and do you.
6.) Yoga can be beneficial for athletes.
This isn’t an illusion. I’m starting to jive with yoga.
There are many benefits: improved flexibility, awareness of belly breathing, and focus on parasympathetic nervous system activation.
However, yoga isn’t the *only* way to hone in on this stuff. Read more here.
7.) I don’t know everything.
Olympic lifts, kettlebell training, and taming grizzly bears are a few of my weaknesses as a coach.
Put simply, I don’t know everything, nor do I pretend to.
8.) Given that, know your expertise.
There’s a lot of noise in the strength and conditioning industry, so it’s in your best interest to know and own your expertise.
Because you can’t be good at everything. And if you want to be or think you are, you’re a narcissistic a-hole.
Also, the more you get good at a niche, the better you’ll get at it and be seen as an “expert” in your craft.
With that said, if a client asks me to teach them the kettlebell snatch, you bet I’m referring out to a RKC or Strong First coach.
Which brings me to…
9.) Refer out.
There are a ton of people involved in the performance world: strength coaches, physical therapists, athletic trainers, tactical coaches, doctors, and sport psychologists.
It’s okay to share your athletes and send them to a specialist. After all, aren’t we in this profession to give our athletes the best resources available to get better?
10.) Life survival tip: have humble confidence.
11.) Fat loss is HARD.
It kills me when people have fat loss goals, yet don’t take any actionable steps to achieve them.
Fat loss is hard, people.
However, if it’s at the top of your priority list, then it will be less hard. Here is a Non-Bs Guide to Getting Results.
12.) If you have to talk about how good your are at everything, you’re probably not that good.
I’ll leave it at that.
13.) Strength training for youth does not always mean lifting weights.
More often than not, people get turned off when “strength” or “resistance” training is mentioned for youth athletes. They envision enrolling their kid in CrossFit, getting under a barbell, and hoping they do not die.
When it comes to resistance training for youth, this could me bodyweight, bands, or free weights. It all depends on the maturity and training age of the athlete.
Sometimes, bodyweight exercises will suffice because kids need to work on movement patterns first before adding load.
Play activities such as rock climbing, crawling, and sprinting could also be considered “resistance” training.
So be sure you know what your youth athlete needs.
14.) Anyone cringe when seeing this?
Cue: nails on a chalkboard.
Some athletes aren’t ready to perform a dumbbell snatch right away. Especially if they can’t hip hinge properly, or extend their hips with power, or extend their arm overhead. Also, if their hip external rotators are weak, as well as their core, they’re better off starting elsewhere.
15.) Okay, the correct version:
16.) Read these strength and conditioning books:
17.) Read these soccer books:
18.) Read these relationship books:
19.) You’re welcome.
20.) Never underestimate the power of a walk.
Cardio is no longer evil. It speeds up recovery, keeps us moving, and relaxes our minds.
Walk in nature daily and see what happens to your physical and mental health.
21.) Choose your friends wisely.
Are your closest friends uplifting you physically, mentally, and spiritually?
Who do you talk to or hang out with the most?
An emotional, drama queen, or an enlightened, boss woman?
Close friends matter. Don’t be an idiot and befriend people just to feed your ego.
22.) “Core work” is a vague term.
Mind fuck: everything can be considered “core work.”
Walking up the stairs, breathing, existing, and carrying a pumpkin spice latte in one hand and a Coach purse in the other. Basic bitches in the house!
Don’t be fooled by the term “core work.” As long as you’re doing your squats, pull ups, deadlifts, and push ups, your core is firing enough.
23.) Gas lighting is scary.
In human relationships, politics, but mainly, human relationships, beware of gas lighting.
Here is an excellent article shedding light on the topic.
24.) Business tip: drink coffee and pretend you know what you’re doing.
25.) Power only improves with strength.
The other day, I got into an argument with a fellow coach who claimed power training is the only answer to improving sprint performance in soccer players. And athletes shouldn’t train for strength.
Truthfully, science doesn’t give a damn about your opinion.
In order to optimize power output, athletes need to lie somewhere in between speed-strength and strength-speed on the force velocity curve. And none of this is achieved if we *skip* the maximal strength training component.
A year ago, I could only perform 12 pound medicine ball slams. But after incorporating strength training into my regimen, now I can do 16 pound slams at the same speed, therefore, optimizing my power:
Science wins again.
If you have an athlete who lifts heavy all the time, it’s in their best interest to start sprinkling in more speed and speed-strength work to get closer to the center where “power” lies.
And if you have an athlete who only does jumps, hops, and bounds, it’s best to get them performing more maximal strength and strength-speed lifts.
*exit stage right*
26.) Are we almost at #30?
27.) Don’t expect a lot from others.
Expect a lot from yourself.
28.) Pull ups are empowering for girls and women.
It’s amazing to see my female athletes excelling at pull ups, and sometimes, beating the boys.
There are so many ways to train for better pull ups, but you have to be consistent in order to truly get better.
A lot of my pull up variations (above) were stolen from Meghan Callaway’s Ultimate Pull Up Program. Check it out. It’s badass.
29.) What do you want to be remembered for?
Do you want to be remembered for how many phDs you received? How much literature you wrote? How many political Facebook arguments you won? Or for how caring you were? Or how much you gave a shit about people?
Something to ponder.
30.) Be able to live with yourself.
If you aren’t comfortable with yourself, then life and people will always disappoint you. Whatever happens, whether that is losing a friend, going through a break up, or moving far away, as long as you can live with yourself, you’re good.
And there we go.
300 articles down.
And many, many more on the horizon.
Thanks again for reading and supporting the success of this blog. <3