Monday, May 28, 2007

If you want to be a better trainer.......

...therapist and strength coach, you must know and understand "Anatomy and Physiology." At a recent NMT Lecture I took in Phoenix in April, this is what Don Kelley (NMT Instructor) kept emphasizing. I completely agree with Don, 100%. The level of knowledge of the average trainer and fitness professional is appalingly bad, and frankly, I don't care to ever be put into that category. These NMT seminars are igniting a new level of commitment and passion for learning much more in depth the amazing principles and anatomy that are the human body. For those of you reading this that really want to increase your knowledge about anatomy I highly recommend the seminars put on by NMT Center, started by Judith Delaney Walker. Two must have resources explaining the Neuromuscular techniques written by Judith Delaney Walker and Leon Chaitow are:

Clinical Applications of Neuromuscular Techniques Volume 1 The Upper Body

Clinical Applications of Neuromuscular Techniques Volume 2 The Lower Body

On a similar but different note, if you want a crash course in anatomy and physiology do yourself a favor and see the BODIES exhibit. Talk about an amazing exhibit!!! We went with Yoana's family last weekend in San Diego to see the exhibit and we were totally blown away. Real bodies, real organs, and reaaaalllllyyyy good information. What helped me was the fact that I was able to see four cadavers in Phoenix in April. It gave me a first hand look and touch of what the anatomy looks like pre-disected. And the Bodies exhibit gives you that same advantage, even though you cannot touch these bodes. Either way it gives you such a real persective about how amazing the muscles are, yet alone the rest of the body.



Track Day / Tempo Running
Warm Up

8 x 100 meters (@70% effort)

MondayA-1 Double Clean and Press
24kgs 5 x 5

B-1 Weighted Chin Ups
24kg 5,4,3,2,2

C-1 Single Leg Deadlift
28kg 5 x 6/6

Tempo Runningy May 26th

10 x 100 yards (@75% intensity)

Off to Palm Desert this weekend for some R & R with Flaca (my wife)!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Posture Seminar: The Gravity Game

Just got back from an incredible seminar from NMT Center in Phoenix called the "Gravity Game", a comprehensive seminar about postural assessment, the effects of biomechanical stress in the body, gravity, the feet and gait. Overall it was very good and the part on the foot and how to assess foot function was OUTSTANDING! This year has been especially cool for me as I have new found passion to study human anatomy and take my comprehension of functional anatomy to a new level.

One of the first laws you learn about in the Bible is the law of sowing and reaping. What you sow you reap. This principle applies to every aspect of life and especially your career. If you are a trainer for your profession or are in the health and wellness industry what you sow in terms of study and self growth you will reap. It's funny, since I have started taking these Neuromuscular Therapy Seminars I have started attracting so many new clients and with complex orthopedic challlenges that I would have never been able to help due to my lack of knowledge is various areas. Well, I can tell you first hand that the law of sowing in reaping applies big time when it comes to expanding your business and becoming a person if influence in your community. Those of you who are avid self growth junkies and actually put into action the material you learn can attest to the truth of what I'm talking about. The day you stop growing is the day you start going backwards, both spiritually and professionaly. I am so excited with the new direction in my business as it has BREATHED NEW LIEF INTO ME!!!

BOTTOM LINE: Keep learning, keep growing, ask questions and don't be one of those people that thinks they know it all. For the more you learn the more you truly learn how little you do know.

Monday Training

A-1 Reverse Lunges
2x20kg's 4 x 6/6

B-1 Clean and Press
28kg 5 x 2/2

C-2 Bent Over Rows
28kg 2 x 6/6

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Pleasure, Ease and Comfort!

One of the interesting topics we talked about during the NMT(Neuromuscular Therapy) Seminar last month in Phoenix was that the body's primary goal is to move toward pleasure, ease and comfort. If you think this through you will find that what I'm saying is totally true. The body will do everything it can to avoid displeasure, pain and discomfort. What I'm talking about here are the autonomic functions of the body that we do not consciously control. You never have to tell you body to bring blood into an injured area or to remove lactic acid completely from you muscles within 45 minutes after a workout. Because of this we have to learn how to work with this principle and use it to our advantage. That is why trigger point therapy such as NMT, myofascial release, foam roller work, joint mobility and other modalities are so important. They assist your body in moving toward ease and pleasure which allows you to train and function at a higher level.

Let's look at the reverse thinking of that principle and apply it to attittude and character. Now when it comes to attitude and moral issues, staying in our "COMFORT ZONE" is a huge mistake. The only time you really stretch your moral fiber is when you put yourself in uncomfortable situations and grow. In fact, you can never really grow in a comfortable place. I have found that some of the biggest and most important lessons in my life have come from very difficult situations which at times seemed hopeless. As my client Bob says (who by the way is multi-millionare and unbelievably successful) "adversity is a tool that can be used to make you better." He even says that truly successful people will bring self-imposed adversity into their lives when things get to easy or the sailing is too smooth. If life is too comfortable you may be in a dangerous place.

That is how I look at strength and conditioning: SELF IMPOSED ADVERSITY.

You are intentionally putting load (adversity) on your muscles and structure so that it builds itself up and becomes stronger. If you never expose your muscles and structure to this adveristy, you never get stronger or fitter. You become less healthy, more fat and less prepared for the trials and potential tribulations of life that come your way.

Please share me what you think about ADVERSITY and how you have used it to overcome obstacles in your life....

Thursday Training

A-1 Barbell Front Squats
95lbs 5 x 5 (1 min rest on the GymBoss)

B-1 Dead Snatch
28kg 5 x 5/5 (1 min rest on the GymBoss)

C-1 Weighted Pull Ups
20kg 5,5,3,3,3 (1 min rest on the Gym Boss)

Tempo Running at Track
Warm up
9 x 100 yards sprints @ 70% intensity (hamstring is feeling better!)

Monday Training:

A-1 Reverse Lunges
2x16kgs 4 x 6/6

A-2 Double Clean and Press
24kgs 4 x 5

B-1 Alternating Cleans
2x20kgs 1 x 10/10

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


"Hurry is not of the devil; hurry is the devil." - Carl Jung

"Superficiality is the curse of our age." - Richard Foster

Why write about this? Because I feel that always being in a hurry has caused me to miss out on many of life's most simple joys. Owning your own business, keeping a healthy vibrant marriage, training, reading, studying ,self growth, and family all require a certain amount of time in order to be fruitful. The challenge is in learning to keep all of these in balance without forgetting what is truly important in life. My tendency is to get my schedule so busy with clients that I barely have time to train, study and spend quality time with Yoana. The hectic pace leaves me absolutely smoked and in a chronic state of mental and physical exhaustion. Perhaps some of you have experienced what I am talking about?

Perhaps it's my personality but I have tend to be fear driven with alot of anxiety. I feel that keeping ultra busy with my work will keep me and my family financially secure, but at what expense. Starting in January I really started noticing how much my physical, mental and spiritual health has been impacted from my hectic "HURRIED" pace of life. I honestly cannot say that I have cured this problem, but I am 100% aware of the problem and the negative impact it has had on my life. My training has suffered. An amazing book I read by John Ortberg called "The Life You've Always Wanted; Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People" really awakend me to the ideas I am writing about in this post. I know I am not alone; hurry sickness is the disease of the modern 21st century. Perhaps you have seen people do these things or you yourself do them"

* talk on the cell phone while driving
* Check your e-mail on your cell phone while driving or while eating
* Check your e-mail or answer phone calls while eating with your family
* Multi -tasking (driving, eating, talking on the phone, listening to the radio)
* Accumulating Clutter
* Constantly speeding up daily activities
* Superficiality

One of the things I have started doing is intentionally slowing down my day. Rather than speeding around everywhere as fast as possible, I am purposely driving slower or picking the longest line that the grocery store rather than the shortest one. Beleive me, it is not easy, but it is giving me more peace and less stress. I am also trying to find time for more solitude. Going for walks by the ocean or going and practing putting has been great for me in many ways. It slows me down, gets me into nature as well. Another thing that Yoana and I have started doing is hiking on the weekends. Just getting outside and hiking up mountains has brought so much joy into my life I can't believe it. I feel like a kid again when I do things like hiking.

Anyway, my point is that Life does require alot of work, but we can do our work is a slower, more mindful state of mind. Trying to do everything rushed rarel works, and the quality of our work is mediocre at best. Here is a quote from the book,

"The deeper truth is that we live is a lethal environment. American society is filled with ideas and values and pressures and temptations about success and security and comfort and happiness that we will not even notice unless we withdraw on occasion. Thomas Merton wrote that the early church fathers places such an premium on solitude because they considered society to be a shipwreck from which any sane perosn must swim for his life. These people believed that to let oneself drift along, passively accepting the tenets and values of what they knew as society,was purely and simply a diaster."

Powerful stuff. Are you passively accepting things in your life that are destructive you your soul? Only you can answer that question.

My hamsting is still healing as I feel some pain upon stretching. I think I'll start doing some light tempo running next week. I have a track meet in late June and plan on running in the 50 meter dash. Hopefully my hammie will be ready to go by then.

Training this week: I am taking this week off. True to my nature and habits, I overdid it last week and am smoked. I ran myself into the ground and need a week to recover. You would think I would start to learn from my mistakes, geez!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Imperfection Training.........Have you tried it?

My twin brother Keats wrote a article called "Imperfection Training" for T-mag a couple of years ago. The basic premise of the article is that in our quest for the holy grail of strength and fitness, training PERFECTLY or safely is not always to our advantage. In other words, mixing your training by using barbell that are unevenly weighted on each side, performing your exercises blindfolded or even having someone unexpectedly bump and push you while exercising can have tremendous benefits. So rather than always mixing up our movements so we never make any real progress, we take Pavel's concept of the "SAME BUT DIIFERENT" and tweak the current exercises we currently do.

Well that is what I did today during my Single leg deadlifts, I used a blindfold and man was it difficult. Talk about a nervous system cocktail!!! If you have not tried it, do it, you will be shocked how difficult it is. So go ahead and try to spice up your current training program my using the "Imperfection" technique.

Is safe always better? Not always!!! Is your posture always perfect in a sporting environment? If a lineman tackles you are worried about posture? Questions to ask yourself. I am all for posture and maintaining integrity in your structure during training but I think we can get carried away with it. Read my brother's article for a more indepth discussion!


A-1 Pistol on Bench (to rehab the left hammie)
8kg 3 x 5/5

B-1 Single Leg Deadlifts (blindfolded)
24kg 5 x 5/5 (left hammie is feeling better. I'm Pummped I could even do this)

C-1 See Saw Press
24kgs 5 x 5/5

D-1 BW Chin Ups
12,12, 8

E-1 Farmers Walk
2 x 20kg 90 yards x 3 sets